06 May Looking over the Hill
Rangers defender Clint Hill hopes his side are looking to repay some of the hurt caused by last week’s Old Firm humiliation when they take on Partick Thistle on Sunday.
The Ibrox outfit could barely lift a hand to defend themselves as Brendan Rodgers’ rampant Celtic ran riot at Ibrox last week.
The 5-1 pasting was their biggest ever derby defeat at home and leaves them an astonishing 36 points behind their bitter foes.
Hill knows victory over Alan Archibald’s Jags at Firhill will not make up for the pain suffered by the Light Blues faithful after their team was also sent spinning from the William Hill Scottish Cup semi-finals by the Parkhead side the week previous.
But he reckons three points will sooth some of the disappointment being endured by his team’s beleaguered support.
He said: “You don’t walk off that pitch after that scoreline thinking you have done well. The last couple of weeks have been hard and I don’t think we have played as well as we can.
“The fact it has been against Celtic has made it more painful, but there is a chance to rectify that now.
“We go to Partick and have four games where we need to kick on and have a positive effect for next season.
“I don’t put myself in the situation where I see things like [the criticism aimed at the team]. Maybe some of it is right as we should be playing more consistently as a team, and we should be higher as a team.
“I’ll leave that to other people to make judgements, and try to make a few corrections at the end of the season to things that didn’t go quite right.”
As bad as Pedro Caixinha’s players were last week, the new Ibrox manager must also take his share of the blame after leaving the flanks of his team exposed against Rodgers’ men by going with an ill-judged midfield diamond.
The displays from his first two Old Firm games in charge will understandably leave supporters worried but Hill believes patience is needed while the Rangers players adjust to the Portuguese coach’s methods.
The veteran centre-back said: “Generally, it takes time. You might get a little bounce from a new manager coming in, and players taking that reaction with a slate being wiped clean for everyone.
“But, I do think it takes time for his philosophy to get through to the players. They might need to change players to ones that suit their style.
“Hopefully we’ll have pre-season, the lads will hit the ground running and we can have a better season.”