In a season of difficult moments for Cyriel Dessers, perhaps the hardest have come in the last couple of weeks, as he has watched the Celtic players celebrate their success.

The images burned into his brain though of the scenes of jubilation around one half of Hampden on Saturday and the desolation at the other may well yet prove valuable. Scenes he hoped never to witness, but that he forced himself to when they arrived.

As consolations go, it is in the scant category, but Dessers is at least trying to salvage something from the way this season ended for Rangers by using that personal lowlight reel as motivation to come back stronger next term.

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“It’s been a heavy season, that’s for sure, in all kinds of ways,” Dessers said.

“It’s easy to all go down now in energy and everyone needs to take a rest. But to see them celebrate [on Saturday] and 10 days ago gives me a lot of energy to go again this summer.

“It maybe seems weird to say now, but I cannot wait for pre-season to start again and to do better than this season. I’m looking forward to that.

“We have to turn things over in our favour. We’re on a good path but we’re not there yet. If you look at the balance at the end of the season we showed good things, but we’re not there yet.

“We will go further along that path and I’m sure it will lead us to more trophies next season.”

Dessers realises that the Rangers fans have grown weary of hearing such statements from their players over the past few seasons, and they have become especially tired of hearing how close they are to overcoming Celtic rather than seeing the evidence of it on the pitch.

That being said, while the Scottish Cup final loss was the fourth defeat from five matches that Rangers have suffered at the hands of Celtic this season, it was the closest they have come to getting that monkey off their backs.

The way they competed and even bettered Celtic for long spells in the second half provided Dessers with both encouragement for the future, and frustration in the present.

“We neutralised them well,” he said.

“We had our moments as well. So as the game went on, in the second half especially, I felt it was growing. I was thinking that this was going to be the day when we turned everything around.

“Everybody is devastated. We were close and we played a good game. It wasn’t an easy game and if you lose it that way in the end then obviously it hurts.

“Even if you look at the five games between the teams this season the gap is not that big. Everybody has seen that. But there is still something about these games. We didn’t win this season any of them.

"But on the other hand, the performance that we had on Saturday and the game plan that we had worked. It was good and that’s something to build on especially in these head-to-head games.”

For now, Dessers and his Rangers teammates will retreat to lick their wounds over the summer. Though, there is a fair old chance that many may not return for another crack at overturning Celtic’s dominance.

The scale of the required rebuild has been played down by Ibrox manager Philippe Clement over the past week, and fans may worry that the comfort Rangers seem to have taken from their Scottish Cup final performance will lead to a false belief that the wholesale changes many of them crave are not actually required.

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The level of turnover in personnel remains to be seen then, but however they manage it, Dessers acknowledges the one thing that does need to change is the mentality within the squad. It is between the ears as much as between the white lines that Rangers have fallen short this season, and that is something that will have to be addressed.

“I think every summer at a top club is significant,” he said.

“We will need a reset, also mentally, and then get the energy back together. We showed really good things this season and some things to build on that we will take to the next season.

“The basics are there. We just have to build on that and finally make the difference in these head-to-head games. And then I feel that things will go our way as well.”

The rest may have come at a good time for Dessers, who appeared to speak to the press after the game on Saturday with an unwelcome adornment to his cup final suit in the form of a moonboot.

That was the result of a challenge from Celtic defender Cameron Carter-Vickers that forced him from the action at half time, and he is hopeful that fears he may have damaged ankle ligaments prove unfounded.

“I got injured in the first half after around 20 or 25 minutes,” he said.

“I tried to go on because obviously that was the game of the year, the big final at the end of the season and one big push. But I had to come off.

“I’ll get it assessed in the next few days.”