On the pitch, the Ibrox side enjoyed numerous league and cup successes, while coming close to European glory. "It's not until you look back on your career that you realise how fortunate you were to be involved in those games.?"
Rangers are on a run of four consecutive wins in the league. It was an incredible fall from grace for a club that has won more domestic honours than any other in world football.
The men from the Stadium of Light have been suffering for some time with a lack of confidence and barring a late turn around, they could soon be into the third tier of the Football League system in this country.
The Northern Irishman is preparing for Sunday's Ladbrokes Premiership clash with the Light Blues at Ibrox knowing that a huge roar erupted from the Rangers dressing room last weekend when they heard the draw after beating Falkirk in the quarter-finals.
However, for the first time since former Liverpool manager Rodgers arrived in Glasgow, Celtic are looking over their shoulder.
"Celtic, on their day, are a very good side".
"It tells you they expect to win and their supporters will clearly expect them to win".
Celtic go into the game with a six-point advantage over Rangers as well as a game in hand and a victory tomorrow should see off any talk of a potential title race.
The Old Firm game is available in most countries through the rights holders' online platform, if they have one.
"They've made strides but this game is really important".
Bates said: "After the game, we were buzzing having got to a semi-final and any team we'd have got in the draw we'd have cheered".
Rangers have doubts over defender Russell Martin and winger Jamie Murphy before Sunday's meeting with Celtic.
"Rangers were from where they were then to where they are now have a long way still to go".
He added: "We don't want to change anything before a big game".