McCoist gives players reality check after Cup win
Ally McCoist warned his Rangers players not to get carried away after the fallen Scottish giants defeated Motherwell 2-0 to knock the Scottish Premier League leaders out of the League Cup.
It was the first time a SPL side had visited Ibrox since the Rangers newco were denied entry to the country’s top flight and voted into the Scottish Football League in the summer.
Despite having not won at Ibrox since May 1997 Stuart McCall’s side arrived in Glasgow as favourites after impressing with their performances on their way to the top of the SPL.
However, Motherwell were on the back foot from the start and captain Lee McCulloch headed the hosts into a deserved 49th minute lead before Dean Shiels volleyed home a fine second just seven minutes later to make a mockery of their lowly league status.
McCoist was delighted with victory but warned his side, who sit second in the Third Division and were knocked out of another Cup competition last week by Queen of the South, they still have a long way to go.
“It is a wee indicator to themselves and the support that we can certainly play against teams higher up in the divisions,” McCoist said.
“But also we can’t get carried away. It is a very small step in what is going to be a long, long road and I make no apologies for telling the supporters that.
“We have got miles and miles to go but it shows you that in a one-off game we can compete with anyone.”
The Rangers manager denied his side had been motivated by a desire to show the SPL sides what they are missing.
“Not at all to be honest. I just wanted to win the game tonight to progress to the next round of the cup,” McCoist added.
“We were obviously aware of who we were playing. They are top of the SPL and you could argue they are the in-form team in the country at the moment.
“All it did was give us an opportunity to see how we can compete against a team like that at the moment and we did it very well tonight.
“But let’s not get carried away. It was a good result and a good performance but in the cold light of day it gets us into the next round but we still have miles to go.
“The priority is, and always has been, to get out of the division.
“We are up at Forres Mechanics in the Scottish Cup on Saturday and it is a completely different game.
“As good as this result was I just hope that the players can look at the game and see the reasons for their performance and victory.
“I think it’s really important we look at the game and see the reasons why we did a lot better tonight and we have to see that on a far more consistent and regular basis.”
Rangers are certain to face an SPL side in the quarter-finals and Celtic’s victory over Raith Rovers on Tuesday sets up the mouth-watering prospect of a potential Old Firm tie.
The Hoops would be overwhelming favourites for any meeting but McCoist said he would happily take on any side at Ibrox.
“Obviously the Old Firm game is a completely different game and it would certainly create a massive amount of interest, not that they don’t usually,” he said.
“But if you can give me a home tie I will take that against anybody.