(Originally published on September 21, 2020).
The Old Firm playing in the Premier League has been discussed for decades, but in his most recent column, Peter Crouch has shared his honest opinion about where Celtic and Rangers would finish.
Over the weekend, Henrik Larsson celebrated his 50th birthday and with such an illustrious career that included league titles in Scotland, Spain, and England, it’s still bizarre to think that some football fans doubted if the Celtic icon could score goals outside of Scotland.
Well, his time at Barcelona and Manchester United definitely proved that he could – not forgetting the remarkable international career that saw him score goals at three World Cups and three European Championships.
However, you could argue that the Swedish striker played for Celtic at a time when The Bhoys and their fierce rivals Rangers were at their most competitive.
For example, Larsson spearheaded Celtic’s attack in their 2003 UEFA Cup final defeat Porto, while five years later, Rangers also reached the final where they lost to Zenit St Petersburg.
However, a recent interview that Celtic supremo Dermot Desmond gave to The Athletic has reignited the long-standing idea that Celtic and Rangers should join the Premier League.
The Irish businessman believes that the acceleration of changes in the broadcast and digital rights landscape brought about by the coronavirus pandemic is likely to prompt a rethink by English clubs of their opposition to the involvement of The Old Firm in a reformulated Premier League.
“Celtic and Rangers are in the top eight clubs in Great Britain by any metric – support, attendance, international appeal. At some stage, there’s going to be the realisation that if they want to maximise their revenues, then there’ll be a British Premier League. And there should be a British Premier League, because you already have a couple of Welsh teams in the English leagues. So why not?” said Desmond.
Well, in Peter Crouch’s latest column, the former Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur striker was asked where Celtic and Rangers would finish in the Premier League?
“I’ve got to be honest with you, unfortunately, and say as things stand both Rangers and Celtic would be in the bottom half if they entered the Premier League and that is purely down to the budgets. The squads assembled and the wages the top English teams play are on another level.
“For that reason, I don’t see how Rangers or Celtic could compete. I’m enjoying watching Steven Gerrard’s progress as a manager from afar and I hope, one day, he wins a trophy at Ibrox but we need to be realistic. The top of England and the top of Scotland are two different things,” said the former England striker.