THE HALF DECENT FOOTBALL MAGAZINE

17 April ~ After sealing promotion to the Scottish Premiership with a 1-0 win over Dumbarton on April 5, Rangers have the chance to reach the Scottish Cup final today. Standing in their way are Premiership leaders Celtic, meaning the two will meet in a Scottish Cup semi-final for the first time since 1998.

Having already won that season’s League Cup, the 1998 semi-final was the next stage in Celtic’s bid for the Treble, as they also aimed to stop Rangers making it a record ten consecutive League titles. The match was held at a “neutral” Celtic Park and was deadlocked until the 75th minute, when Ally McCoist’s diving header put Rangers 1-0 up. It was left to Jörg Albertz to seal the win two minutes from time, finishing powerfully after a run from inside his own half.

Craig Burley’s late consolation could not inspire a Celtic fightback, so it was Rangers who advanced to the final. There, having lost out to Celtic in the race for the League title on the last day of the season, they lost 2-1 to Hearts. It was also McCoist’s final game as a Rangers player and Walter Smith’s last match of his first stint as the club’s manager.

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