Rangers: Ally McCoist issues Cup warning to Celtic boss Deila
Rangers manager Ally McCoist reckons Celtic counterpart Ronny Deila would be wrong to write off the Ibrox men should the sides meet in the League Cup.
Both teams go into Saturday's semi-final draw, with McCoist admitting he would prefer "anyone but Celtic".
But, with his side in the second tier, he challenged Deila's claim that the "best teams are in the top division".
"We are the outsiders along with Aberdeen and [Dundee] United, but we fancy our chances," said McCoist.
And McCoist believes that having his side, Hibernian and Hearts in the Championship this term means Deila's assessment is wide of the mark.
"Ronny is entitled to his opinion and maybe it makes sense because we are the only team from outside the top division. I can understand Ronny's logic, yeah," the Rangers boss said.
"I don't think it's unfair, but then I don't necessarily agree with it. I can understand where he is coming from.
"In most cases, you would think a team from a lower division that is left in a competition with three teams from the league above is the weaker side.
"Ronny would be 100% right in his beliefs if it was a normal playing field. But I don't think anyone can argue that, in recent years, Scottish football has been anything but a normal playing field.
"We have got three of the top five clubs in the country playing in the division below the top flight."
And McCoist, whose side meet Dumbarton in the Scottish Cup on Saturday, takes huge confidence from Rangers' two League Cup wins over Premiership opposition this season.
"Aberdeen and United are two of the better sides in the country on their day, but we have proved this year that, against teams from the top flight, we can handle the occasion and we now look forward to the draw," he added.
Striker Kenny Miller is also confident Rangers would be able to compete with Deila's outfit.
"They are the reigning champions of the SPL, playing at the higher level, but we would go in confident, as we do with every game," said Miller, who also played for Celtic.
"We are in the Championship, we are the lowest-ranked team, so what Deila said makes sense a little bit. But only time will tell who the strongest is and who the weakest is."