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Rangers rally to earn draw but miss chance to pile pressure on Celtic

The Ibrox side were brought crashing back to earth after the Europa League heroics as they played out a 1-1 draw against Dundee United.

Image: PA

RANGERS WERE BROUGHT crashing back to earth following their heroics against Borussia Dortmund as they were held to a 1-1 draw by Dundee United at Tannadice.

The Ibrox side, who pulled off a stunning 4-2 win away to the German giants in the Europa League on Thursday, missed the chance to pile the pressure on cinch Premiership rivals Celtic.

Giovanni Van Bronckhorst’s team fell behind to a first-half goal from 20-year-old United defender Ross Graham but despite dominating the second half, they only had a Joe Aribo equaliser to show for their efforts.

United made one change to the team who started the Scottish Cup win at Partick Thistle last weekend as Charlie Mulgrew replaced Kevin McDonald.

There was also one alteration to the Rangers starting line-up from the victory over Dortmund as Filip Helander took over from Leon Balogun in central defence. Aaron Ramsey, who featured as a substitute in Germany, was missing from the squad with what the club described as a “minor knock”.

The visitors had a big shout for a penalty in the 12th minute when Mulgrew’s clearance from a James Tavernier cross struck the arm of his team-mate Graham, but referee Bobby Madden waved play on.

Two minutes later, Rangers midfielder Ryan Jack had to make a vital challenge just as Marc McNulty looked set to knock the ball home from an Ian Harkes delivery after Mulgrew had released the midfielder down the right with a clever free-kick.

Rangers went close immediately afterwards when Ryan Kent played the ball wide to Scott Arfield who rolled it into the path of Alfredo Morelos in a central position 12 yards out, but the Colombian was unable to get the ball under control and Benjamin Siegrist rushed out to claim.

United almost took the lead in the 24th minute after some brilliant work from Ilmari Niskanen to get himself clear in the box but Tavernier made a crucial block.

The hosts were coming on strong and they went ahead in the 29th minute when Graham rose above Helander to head in Dylan Levitt’s corner.

United had a huge let-off in the 59th minute when Aribo’s glancing header from a Tavernier corner was brilliantly pushed out by Siegrist.

As substitute Fashion Sakala tried to turn turn the loose ball into the net, he appeared to have his shirt pulled by Graham and Liam Smith was able to clear the danger.

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Rangers had been piling on the pressure and the equaliser eventually came in the 76th minute when Aribo fired an emphatic finish high into the net from a Calvin Bassey cutback at the end of a brilliant flowing move down the left.

The Ibrox side had a great chance to win it when Amad Diallo went clean through on goal but the on-loan Manchester United attacker clipped a post.

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