Aberdeen v Rangers: I did not enjoy "nasty" Dons matches - Barry Ferguson

Derek McInnes, Mark Warburton
Aberdeen and Rangers have both taken nine points from their opening six Premiership matches

Former Rangers captain Barry Ferguson says there is "a nastiness" attached to Aberdeen versus Rangers fixtures as the teams prepare to meet for the first time in four years on Sunday.

Rangers travel to face the Dons after a difficult start to the season, and Ferguson says it was not always an enjoyable experience at Pittodrie.

"It is a place you go to and you don't feel very welcome," said Ferguson.

"There is a nastiness about the fixture."

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Archive Sept 2010: Aberdeen 2-3 Rangers

Speaking on BBC Radio Scotland's Sportsound, the Clyde manager added: "That's not with the staff. They are fine. It's with the fans.

"Obviously it goes back to the days of what happened with (Ian) Durrant.

"I always found it a very difficult place to go and especially now with Del (manager Derek McInnes) being there, I watched their game against Dundee, and they are back firing.

"They are looking good. The front three I really like - Hayes, McGinn and Rooney are always looking a threat.

"It is going to be a tough game."

Kevin McNaughton, Barry Ferguson
Barry Ferguson (right) says he did not enjoy taking on Aberdeen at Pittodrie

Mark Warburton's side have come in for criticism for their performances since promotion to the Premiership, which culminated in a 5-1 hammering at rivals Celtic in their recent league outing.

Ferguson believes his old Ibrox team-mate McInnes will have his Aberdeen players primed for the visit of Rangers, but thinks Rangers could exploit weaknesses in the Dons defence.

He said: "The only problem I have with Aberdeen is that defensively they don't look great, but going forward they are a major threat.

"So it is a massive game next weekend. It is a very hostile place to go and it boils down to what happened with Durranty - it has always been like that.

"I know Del really well - obviously I played with him - and I really like the way he is setting his teams up, his signing policy.

"He's not got a lot of money to play about with, but he's got some real good players.

"I really like the look of the boy he's brought in from Norwich, the midfielder (James) Maddison - he looks a player.

"Del has an eye for a player and Rangers will have their work cut out, but I can't wait.

"It should be a cracker."