Rangers midfielder Andy Halliday has revealed he was forced to celebrate last month’s Old Firm win on the plane to Dubai after seeing his cheeky bid to toast the triumph in the streets around Ibrox foiled.
The boyhood Rangers fan – who grew up just yards from the stadium on Copland Road – helped Steven Gerrard’s men halt Brendan Rodgers’ run of derby dominance with a 1-0 win over Celtic.
He later described the victory as the best day of his life but he was forced to dart straight to the airport after full-time having signed up for a sunshine break with girlfriend Jilly Cross in the Middle East.
However, Halliday admits he asked his other half if he could postpone the holiday by 24 hours so he could join the Gers faithful in the bars around Ibrox – only to be left disappointed.
The 27-year-old, speaking from the club’s winter training base in Tenerife, told to RangersTV : “I got straight on a plane after the Old Firm; it has been such a long season in a short space of time so it was good that the gaffer gave the boys a bit of time to recoup.
“I flew a couple of hours after the game but I celebrated on the plane, don’t worry about that. I actually said to my girlfriend if there was a possibility to get a flight the next day I was heading down Paisley Road West for the night.
“The feeling at the final whistle was sheer ecstasy, these couple of players who have been here for the last few years have been through some difficult times but we have stood up to it and come back stronger.
“No more than the fans, they have gone through hell and back but they have followed their club all the way through so it was important to get that victory for them and you can see on the streets of Glasgow they certainly enjoyed it.”
Halliday ensured the decibel levels went from loud to deafening just three minutes into the game as he launched a ferocious tackle on Olivier Ntcham.
That got Gers pumped up and they went on to claim their first league triumph over their bitter foes in seven years thanks to Ryan Jack’s winner.
“I heard my tackle early on went a bit viral but you have to set the tone in a derby,” said Halliday, whose side now sit level on points with the Hoops. “I said to the boys if someone gets the chance to leave a marker on them then do it and I was the lucky one that got the chance.
“It is the best fixture in the world, it’s as simple as that. I had some difficult times in that fixture in the past with some heavy defeats but it was certainly good to give a bit back to the fans. It was 1-0 but it was a doing, it could have been five.
“It added that bit extra because of the way the boys played and the result. When you look at the title race going into the winter break it is looking good for us.”
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