DUNDEE United boss Billy Kirkwood will have a sense of deja vu this weekend when he walks back into Ibrox for the meeting with league champions and leaders Rangers. Kirkwood served his managerial apprenticeship with Rangers - as a coach under current Ibrox manager Walter Smith - before Dundee United, the club he made his name with as a player in the 1980s, asked him to take charge in 1995. Long-serving Tannadice supremo Jim McLean had moved upstairs to become chairman and his successor, Ivan Golac, was sacked for taking the club into relegation waters. Kirkwood couldn't stop United sinking but they have re-surfaced in the big-time after a season in the first division. What concerns Rangers more than the newly promoted team are the after-effects of their long midweek journey to Vladikavkaz - just 40 kilometres from the civil war in Chechnya - to face Russian champions Alania in the Champions' League qualifying round second leg. 'The United match will be tough after all the travelling we've had to do in Europe,' reflects Rangers boss Smith. 'The good thing for us is that we've been scoring a few goals. 'Ally McCoist proved at Dunfermline last weekend and in Russia that he's not lost any of his appetite.' Bottom club Raith Rovers open their new stand at Starks Park for their first home match of the season, against Motherwell. The trip to Kirkcaldy was not a happy one for Alex McLeish's team last season and the Lanarkshire side will be happy to take a point. Hibernian face Dunfermline at Easter Road. Hibs' Edinburgh rivals, Hearts, make the long journey north to Aberdeen for a Sunday clash with both teams having faced European opponents in midweek. Aberdeen boss Roy Aitken is certain to make changes following his team's showing against Lithuanian side Vilnius, losing 3-1 on their own Pittodrie pitch but scraping through to the next round of the UEFA Cup 5-4 on aggregate.