James Tavernier is determined to justify the faith shown in him by manager Steven Gerrard (pictured) when Rangers face Celtic in Sunday’s Betfred Cup final (Rangers 21/10, Celtic 13/10, draw 13/5 – Match Betting).
Tavernier, 28, was a controversial choice of captain by the English manager but has now worn the armband on 100 occasions for the Gers and will lead out the Light Blues at Hampden Park this weekend.
The Bradford-born defender has certainly put in a shift since moving to Glasgow in 2015, making 162 league appearances and rarely missing a game for the Scottish giants.
He has played every minute of Rangers’ 2019-20 Scottish Premiership campaign to date, scoring three goals from 15 outings as the Ibrox outfit battle with the Hoops for league honours (Celtic 4/11, Rangers 2/1 – Scottish Premiership Outright).
The right-back will now try to add some more silverware to his CV north of the border and feels it is the ideal opportunity to prove he deserves to be captain.
“I’ve enjoyed the responsibility and the role since the gaffer gave me the armband,” he said. “It makes me want to do better, especially for myself, the club and the boys.
“It brings more attention but I relish the pressure. I just want to repay the gaffer, the lads and the fans with silverware.”
Tavernier, who is priced at 5/1 to score anytime in the match, will probably be forced to defend for the majority of the contest, with Neil Lennon’s Bhoys favourites to lift the trophy.
However, there is an air of confidence among Gerrard’s players and the proverbial form book will go out of the window when the Old Firm go head to head at the home of Scottish football.