Rangers will continue to ignore the “noise” around claims the Scottish Premiership title is theirs to lose after defeating Celtic, says manager Steven Gerrard.
A 1-0 victory over their rivals at Ibrox on Saturday moved Gerrard’s team 19 points clear at the summit.
However, the Rangers manager claimed the lead was only 10 points, with Celtic holding three games in hand.
“Prior to this game, we were aware of the noise,” he said.
“But it’s my job to protect my players and we are not going to gain anything or get an advantage by listening to the noise and getting involved in playing to it.
“We need to keep a tight-knit group and keep doing the right things. Everything we have done this season has got us into this position and we need to keep fighting to remain there.
“My reaction to the win is I’m really proud, really happy and satisfied with the three important points. It stretches our lead to 10 points with where it’s at.”
Rangers began the game on the back foot as Celtic started quickly knowing a win was crucial in clawing away at the huge gap between the two sides.
And while Callum McGregor’s own goal after Nir Bitton’s red card was pivotal late on, heroics from goalkeeper Allan McGregor in the first half provided a platform for the hosts to build on after the break.
The 38-year-old was inspired in the Rangers goal, in particular to deny Leigh Griffiths with an acrobatic finger-tip save on to the post.
“It’s a shame he is nearly as old as me, because I’d love him to be my keeper for many, many more years,” said Gerrard.
“A couple of the saves in the first half were world-class.
“We talk about him a lot after big games, which tells its own story. You are talking about a legend of the club, a phenomenal goalkeeper.”