Former Rangers captain Barry Ferguson targets ‘major shock’ against Celtic as Alloa boss urges players to ‘relax’ in Scottish Cup tie

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Barry Ferguson has urged his Alloa players to approach their Scottish Cup fourth round tie against Celtic in a “relaxed” manner as he targets “major shock” on Saturday evening.

The former Rangers captain, who won the competition five times during his career, is relishing the chance to lock horns with Ange Postecoglou’s new-look Hoops side at the Indodrill Stadium.

Ferguson wants his part-time squad to believe they can pull of a cup upset during the televised clash and believes he has a game place in place that will frustrate the Glasgow giants in Clackmannanshire.

Barry Ferguson became manager of Alloa Athletic this summer. Picture: SNSBarry Ferguson became manager of Alloa Athletic this summer. Picture: SNS
Barry Ferguson became manager of Alloa Athletic this summer. Picture: SNS

Speaking on the Go Radio Football Show, he said: “Sometimes you can overthink it. I want the boys to be as relaxed as possible because I know on the day of the game with it being on TV and leading up to the game there’s going to be a lot of hype.

“Albeit Celtic are coming to town, a massive club with top quality players, I am trying to treat it as normal as I can.

“I think Ange is going to come full strength, I’d be surprised if he doesn’t come full strength.

“We have got a way we need to approach it. We can’t go toe-to-toe with them, if we do that we are playing right into Celtic’s hands.

“I’m looking forward to it because as a coach I’m coming up against a new manager who I’ve been really impressed with the way he has set up.

“I am not one of these managers where we are just going to enjoy the occasion. We are going to try to create an upset, although it is going to be very, very hard.

“It will be interesting come kick off, a full house of 3,500, I will need to have my earmuffs on, no doubt about that but I am looking forward to it.

“We have nothing to lose. Celtic are expected to win, they are expected to come and run all over the top of us, but hopefully our game plan works.”

Ferguson was complimentary of Celtic’s dominant performance against Hibs on Monday night, with new signings Daizen Maeda and Reo Hatate impressing on their debuts.

Reo Hatate impressed on his Celtic debut.Reo Hatate impressed on his Celtic debut.
Reo Hatate impressed on his Celtic debut.

However, the Wasps manager reckons a “major shock” could be on the cards if things fall in his side’s favour.

He admitted: “It (Celtic vs Hibs) was impressive, I’ve got to be honest with you, albeit Hibs should have taken the lead with a glorious chance for Kevin Nisbet, but after that it was just wave after wave of attack.

“They played at such a high tempo and obviously the boy in the middle of the park, Hatate, was really impressive, certainly in the first half.

“We know we are up against it, but you never know - it is cup football. We need to go out with a game plan. Come 7pm (on Saturday) there could be a major shock.

“You need a slice of luck, a lot of things to go for us. I’ll be charged up and the players will be charged up, but on the flip side of that I am sure Celtic will be as well.”