Steven Gerrard fired Rangers a major warning about living in the past – now it's on Clement to 'turn the dial up'

Steven Gerrard -Credit:PA
Steven Gerrard -Credit:PA

The answer would have been unequivocal if you polled Rangers supporters in the immediate aftermath of 55 and asked if a new era of Ibrox dominance was inbound.

And, in the eyes of those who live and breath the Light Blues, how could it not have been? Steven Gerrard had cracked it and, momentarily, left Celtic in a crumpled heap – the deposed champions' 10-in-a-row dream went up in smoke after finishing a record-breaking 25 points behind their biggest rivals who romped to an undefeated Premiership season.

But, three years later, that dominant Rangers title win remains a singular act of resistance amid the psychological headlock Celtic have had their biggest rivals squeezed in when it comes to lifting the title. Brendan Rodgers' side will all-but guarantee a 12th crown out of 13 if they beat Rangers on Saturday. But Philippe Clement – the third man at the helm since Gerrard's hasty exit to Aston Villa in October 2021 – is itching to triumph on enemy territory and rewrite a narrative which is hard to shake.

Gerrard – understanding exactly what Rangers needed to do after a first title in a decade – made it abundantly clear the mindset needed to multiply the success of a dominant Premiership campaign weeks after he delivered his only trophy in Glasgow. He said: "We have created history. It will never go, it will be there for the rest of our lives. The players have done ever so well. You don’t achieve something so big and it doesn’t just vanish and people forget about it, but we are well aware that the language of 55 has to stop now and we need to move very swiftly on to 56 to try and achieve that.

"We are going to be the team that is hunted now rather than being one of the hunters, so it changes, the mentality needs to change and we need to keep and maintain our standards that we have shown over the last 12 months, and even turn the dial even more and turn the heat up even more. We need to add to it.”

And that's what it all boils down to, just ask Gary McAllister who confessed securing title glory can mitigate other setbacks. Speaking to Sky Sports, the former Rangers No.2 said: "Deep down, I think everyone behind the scenes - the players, the management staff, the owners and the board - they will still be chasing winning the league. It brings back memories to when Steven and I came up. We were quite a bit behind Celtic, so we were given a bit of time, but winning that league was very key. We didn't have any great success in the cups, but getting that title was the big thing."

And while Rangers haven't followed up with a Premiership title they have won a League Cup, a Scottish Cup and reached a Europa League Final since Gerrard's call to arms. And, if they win their final four games they will have a legitimate shot of securing their first Treble in 21 years. That would compelling evidence of 'turning the dial up'.