For most people associated with Oxford United Sunday will be a first chance to visit Ibrox, home of Glasgow Rangers. United striker Jamie Mackie has a different story though.
“I went there last season to watch Rangers play Celtic” the Scottish international told us. “I took my little boy to watch it because I had heard so much about it and it is a massive fixture; one of the things I’d love to do when I finish playing is go to as many games like that as I can because you don’t get that opportunity when you are playing every Saturday.
"Rangers Celtic was one of those games and everything you have heard about the atmosphere; just double it when you actually experience it. The hairs on the back of my neck were up and now when my little boy comes to any other game he says “it’s not that loud here Dad.” Games don’t come much bigger. I loved it and never thought I would get to play there but it’s funny how things work out.”
His accent may not make you think it but playing for Scotland was one of the highlights of Jamie’s long and distinguished career.
“I qualified through my dad’s dad and was extremely proud to play for Scotland. I played in some big games and loved the experience. We played Spain in a World Cup qualifier and it was really disappointing not to qualify in the end, but I gained a lot of experience and for that side of the family it was a massive thing for me and obviously for that side of the family.
Jamie may miss out on actually playing at Ibrox as he is a doubt for the game after a tough week of pre-season training in Portugal but he knows that the U’s are going to be up against it against Steven Gerrard’s side
“Rangers will be right at it because they play in Europe soon after so it will be a big test for our boys. We are a young squad and it may only be a pre-season game but for some of the lads it mat be their only opportunity to play there. But we like a challenge and I am sure it it will be a great day for all the Oxford fans travelling up.”
See the full interview in iFollow.