Can the Lichties dare to dream of cup upset?

View from one of the gantries erected for the visit of Glasgow Rangers.
View from one of the gantries erected for the visit of Glasgow Rangers.

ARBROATH will be hoping to pull off one of the biggest shocks in Scottish Cup history when reigning Premier League champions Rangers come to town on Sunday.

Almost 6,000 people will pack into Gayfield Park for the fourth round clash and millions more will watch on television with Sky Sports broadcasting the match live around the world.

Tutties Neuk bunting is on the way up around the bar on Wednesday for the Arbroath v Rangers match on Sunday. Pictured are, from left - Holly and Hannah Forbes with Carol Shand, John Reid, Eyvonne Powell, Paul Forbes, Steve Swankie and Mike Swankie.

Tutties Neuk bunting is on the way up around the bar on Wednesday for the Arbroath v Rangers match on Sunday. Pictured are, from left - Holly and Hannah Forbes with Carol Shand, John Reid, Eyvonne Powell, Paul Forbes, Steve Swankie and Mike Swankie.

Since the draw was made in November, the town has been buzzing as the Lichties prepare to welcome the Ibrox men to town.

And operations behind the scenes at Gayfield have been particularly busy as everyone connected with the club has played their part to ensure that Sunday’s match puts Arbroath on the map.

It is nine years since the Glasgow giants came to town when they won 3-0, but this time around the Maroons may well believe they have a better chance of causing an upset.

In May last year they clinched their first ever league title and they are in the race for promotion from the Second Division.

A number of the men who will face Ally McCoist’s side have played at a higher level and will not be fazed by meeting the Light Blues, whose own form recently has been patchy to say the least.

But regardless of the result, what is assured is that the match will provide a bumper pay day for Arbroath, thanks to the sell-out crowd, cash from Sky Sports and associated sales of hospitality packages and refreshments.

Arbroath manager Paul Sheerin will be hoping for a cup upset as his side try to knock out the ‘Gers who have already won the Scottish Cup 33 times.

And he is hoping his players and all the Maroon faithful packing into Gayfield on Sunday can believe they can pull off a special result.

He said: “You have to believe you can win any game regardless of who you are playing.

“There is always that belief and we will be preparing to win the game.

“Realistically, Rangers will have to be off the ball a bit as when you compare our squad to theirs, pound for pound they have a massive advantage.

“But we have to look at it like we have nothing to lose playing them on the day.”

Off the field, the board of directors have also been hard at work to ensure that the day goes as smoothly as possible.

Ever since the draw was made, the work has been non-stop and the next time they will get to relax will be when the referee sounds his whistle for kick-off.

But despite all the time and effort put in, for club chairman John Christison it will all be worth it.

He explained: “I just wish we had these problems every week!

“As soon as the game kicks-off and I see everyone’s smiling faces inside Gayfield I will be happy and will finally relax.

“And hopefully we will be cheering an Arbroath victory.

“We have had some many other people volunteer to help us too which has been tremendous and we are so grateful.”

Meanwhile supporters heading to the game on Sunday are asked to get to Gayfield as early as possible to make sure there is no congestion on matchday.

With it being an all-ticket fixture the club asks that supporters leave plenty of time to get to the ground as kick-off will not be delayed in any way due to the game being broadcast live on Sky Sports.

Spectators are being reminded that parking in the vicinity of Gayfield will be very limited as Queen’s Drive will be closed off to traffic.

There will also be no parking available at the Ladyloan access as the Sky TV vehicles will be occupying this area.

And the club stress the importance of supporters making sure they are inside Gayfield ready for the kick-off at 12.45 p.m.