Rangers not getting carried away, insists David Bates

Rangers and Celtic players
David Bates (centre) helped Rangers get a draw against Celtic late last year

David Bates insists Rangers are not being over confident after stringing six wins together.

Ibrox manager Graeme Murty said his players celebrated drawing Celtic in next month's Scottish Cup semi-finals.

The Old Firm rivals meet on Sunday in their third Scottish Premiership contest of the season.

"Yeah, there was a cheer, but we're just happy to be in the next round with a big game coming up," said defender Bates, 21.

"Whoever we got we'd have cheered anyway. We had won against Falkirk and were buzzing to be in the next round.

"We are going into the game [on Sunday] confident from the last few games. We are not getting ahead of ourselves and just concentrating on Sunday."

'A platform to prove yourself'

Bates replaced Bruno Alves after 18 minutes to partner Danny Wilson in central defence as Rangers drew 0-0 at Celtic Park in December.

Wilson has since left Rangers and Bates has partnered Alves and Russell Martin in recent games and the Ibrox side trail Premiership leaders Celtic by six points, though Brendan Rodgers' side have a game in hand.

"They are top players," said uncapped Scot Bates. "No one signs for this club without being a top player, so they are all great to play next to.

"It is a wee bit different having to adjust to a different partner but when you go in alongside a top player that always makes it easier.

"Games like Sunday are a platform to prove yourself as a player and to make it into the international team."

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Highlights: Rangers 4-1 Falkirk

Rangers beat Celtic on penalties in the 2016 Scottish Cup semi-final but since then have lost six and drawn two of the eight meetings of the two sides in all competitions.

"I think if we go into Sunday and are right at it we will have a good chance in the match," Bates added.

"Sunday we just need to make sure we do the basics well at the back. We need to defend well all game and then take our chances when they come.

"We're closer in the table but no one expected us to be this close to Celtic. But in the dressing room we all thought we could be as close as we can to them. Everyone wrote us off at the start of the season but I think we've done well so far.

"Coming into this game, everyone will probably write us off again. They have written us off on every other occasion."

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