Graeme Murty proud of Rangers after draw at Celtic
By Peter Smith
Last Updated: 31/12/17 6:42pm
Graeme Murty says Rangers' draw at Celtic is the first step on their "long journey" back to success.
The visitors could easily have come away from Parkhead with more than a 0-0 draw, after Alfredo Morelos wasted a couple of clear-cut openings.
However, Rangers boss Murty was proud of his team's display and believes the performance will help them with their progression.
"It was well deserved," he told Sky Sports. "They had moments in the first half where we were fortunate and made good blocks, good saves. But we had opportunities to go and win the game. I'm really proud of the way the players stood up to a big challenge at a great stadium.
"We could have won the game. But I can't fault the guys, they gave me absolutely everything today. I feel now as though we're at the start of a very big job but it was a fantastic first step to take today.
"I want more days like this. Players who want to come and play for Rangers have to excel in places like this. I thought the guys did today. I didn't enjoy it during the game but now I'm satisfied with what the guys have done."
Murty also had special praise for man of the match David Bates, who stepped off the bench to replace the injured Bruno Alves after just 18 minutes.
"The players need to know that you trust them, as a manager. And I do, I trust them all," said Murty. "Trust is a sacred thing which is easily lost, but David's not done anything since I've been at the club to lose my trust at any time.
"So throwing him into a cauldron like this, I didn't have a second thought. Once you go onto the pitch you have to trust your players to play. He came in and he excelled."
Rangers will next head off to Florida for warm weather training during the winter break and Murty believes it will be a key time for him to explain his vision for the club to his players.
"There are little bits we can improve. We can certainly get better at building up the play and we can certainly get better at moving the ball quickly but in terms of intensity and effort for the full 90 minutes that is where we needed to be," he said.
"I think we're at the start of a very long journey but this first step can bring us together a little bit more. I want the players to understand where we want to go. It's up to me to impart a clear vision of the changes I want to bring in but also help people see what you're going to do to help them change. And that's what the trip to Florida is going to start doing."