Whilst Ross County co-manager Stuart Kettlewell is an admirer of Rangers boss Steven Gerrard, he says Wednesday’s meeting between the two will be ‘war.’
County host Rangers on Wednesday night as they look to hold onto their current top six spot. They will face a Rangers side who will travel to Dingwall for their third game in six days.
Kettlewell is preparing his side for an aggressive approach against the Gers, who the Staggies co-boss coldly refers to as the ‘enemy.’
He told the Press and Journal (page 54, 29/10/19): “Of course, we’ve all got respect for what someone like Steven Gerrard has achieved in the game. But it is not a scenario where we sit back and admire. Myself and Steven Ferguson have to pit our wits against somebody doing a very good job at a massive club.
“For that period of 90 minutes, we’re looking only for our team to get a result. Rangers will be doing likewise, to try to maintain the pace at the top of the league. I think you show your respect after a game of football.
“You’re going to war. “You want three points for your football club. I believe you’re cheating everybody if you stand there and admire your opponent and start cuddling your opponent, offering handshakes. You have to go play against them first. The respect comes after.”
Kettlewell should look at Motherwell’s Rangers approach
If the Staggies were watching Rangers’ most recent match against Motherwell, then they may want to adopt some of the tactics the Steelmen used to frustrate Gerrard’s side.
It wasn’t particularly pretty, but Motherwell played a high pressing style with aggressive tackles and counter-attacking. Rangers reacted slowly to this and only managed to scrape a 2-1 win.
Should Kettlewell drill his players with this approach in mind, County could trouble Rangers. Motherwell proved this is an effective method and it may be one to consider for the Dingwall club.
Kettlewell will know his side are underdogs for this clash but he certainly seems up for the task.