11:57:21 AMCeltic and Rangers face a nerve-shredding end to the Scottish Premier League season
|Gordon Strachan's side travel to Dundee United, while Rangers visit Aberdeen. |
Both Old Firm sides are locked on 86 points, with Celtic's goal difference four better off than their rivals.
Celtic captain Stephen McManus wants to win the title in memory of late coach Tommy Burns, while Gers boss Walter Smith has no regrets over the campaign.
Gordon Strachan is trying to steer Celtic to their third consecutive SPL crown, while Smith wants to add the title to the CIS Cup - with the Scottish Cup final against Queen of the South still to be played on Saturday and his side having also reached the Uefa Cup final, where they lost to Zenit St Petersburg.
The destination of the title will be decided at Tannadice and Pittodrie.
A win for both Old Firm clubs will see the title decided on goal difference.
Rangers triumphed on the final day of the season in 2003 and 2005 but Celtic's McManus is determined his side will be celebrating their third title in as many years.
And the central defender said the death of first-team coach Burns last week was an added incentive for the players.
"We've always said we were doing this for ourselves but Tommy's death has changed things." stated McManus.
"He'll certainly be our motivation and we'll dedicate any title win to him."
Rangers have been unhappy with the number of fixtures they have had to play en route to the Uefa Cup final.
The club felt the SPL was far from helpful as the Ibrox outfit saw their lead at the top of the table chipped away by their fiercest rivals.
After enjoying a seven-point lead over Celtic at one stage, Rangers are now playing catch-up.
But manager Smith insists his side have exceeded expectations this season - whether they secure the title or not.
"We have an opportunity to win the league on Thursday night and we want to take that," said Smith.
"We have probably played more games than we wanted to this season.
"But, if it happens that it is the cause, that is something we just have to put up with.
"We go to Pittodrie looking for the win and hopefully that does us in terms of the league."
Whatever happens, Old Firm supporters up and down the country will be glued to the action with joy and despair in equal measure as the destination of the SPL title swings back and forth between Tannadice and Pittodrie and with a helicopter on standby to deliver the trophy to the victorious team.
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