Rangers midfielder Kevin Thomson expects the Old Firm to finish well ahead of the chasing pack by the close of the Scottish Premier League season. "I certainly do think teams have got better in and around the Old Firm," Thomson told BBC Sport.

"And if teams want to talk about challenging that's an incentive for us.

"I'm not going to say that Celtic and Rangers will finish 20-25 points clear of the rest, but I'd be pretty surprised if they're not."

The 25-year-old was dismissive of a sustained challenge from Dundee United or Hibernian.

"I don't think many people would be betting on any team breaking the Old Firm this year," he added.

"I've been in a situation, at Hibs, when we've had good seasons and the hype goes on 'the Old Firm are in a crisis, blah, blah'."