Dublin: 13°C Sunday 1 August 2021

Rangers take top spot in Scotland - but Gerrard unimpressed with 'very sloppy' finish

The Ibrox outfit maintained their 100% start against St Johnstone last night.

Joe Aribo celebrates, chased by team mate Filip Helander, after scoring to give Rangers a 3-0 lead last night.
Joe Aribo celebrates, chased by team mate Filip Helander, after scoring to give Rangers a 3-0 lead last night.
Image: PA

RANGERS MAINTAINED THEIR 100% start to move top of the Scottish Premiership last night – but it still was not enough to satisfy perfectionist boss Steven Gerrard.

The Ibrox side made it three wins from three as they eased past St Johnstone.

Borna Barisic’s free-kick was followed by goals from Ryan Kent and Joe Aribo before Gerrard rang the changes with half an hour left.

But Rangers failed to keep up the pace after the introduction of four substitutes – including a debut for new signing Kemar Roofe – and Gerrard warned that is not good enough.

The former Liverpool star said: “They were three good goals – a piece of magic from Borna, a great team goal for the second and a good set piece for the third.

“But I thought we got really sloppy at 3-0. We let the game die instead of maintaining our standards. Over the course of the 90 minutes, we turned the ball over too much. So there is still a lot to work on.

“You probably think I’m a moaner but even though we won the game comfortably 3-0, we can still learn a lot collectively and as individuals.

Tonight was our fourth game in 11 days and I made a lot of subs in the second half, so I’ll take my part in the game going flat and sloppy.

“There are a lot of positives. I’m not complaining, I’m happy.

“But we can’t pick and choose when we want our standards to be good. We never played like a top team at 3-0, we let the game fizzle out. We complicated a game which should have been easily managed.

“The players know that a Rangers team 3-0 up has to show a little bit more style and class. I thought we were very sloppy.”

The win nudged Gers ahead of Hibernian on goal difference to the table summit – and also opened up a five point lead on Celtic.

Rangers could be 11 clear by the time the Hoops are back in action if they can carry on their winning run against Livingston and Kilmarnock – but Gerrard is not getting carried away.

Be part
of the team

Access exclusive podcasts, interviews and analysis with a monthly or annual membership.

Become a Member

“I don’t think it is important [being top of the league],” he said. “What’s important is that we are winning football matches. We are keeping clean sheets.

Tonight is the first time I have seen us sloppy. There were signs tonight that we are not where we need to be.

“But I’m pleased in the main at where we sit, of course, but it’s very early days and there is tons of football to be played. All we need to do is focus on the next game, which is Livingston.”

rangers-v-st-johnstone-scottish-premiership-ibrox-stadium Gerrard takes a knee before kick-off. Source: Ian McNichol

Saints made life difficult for Gers early on but Callum Davidson admitted “lapses in concentration” cost his side dear.

“David Wotherspoon gave away a free-kick for the first goal – you can’t give away stupid free-kicks at Ibrox. He knows that himself.

“I thought we limited Rangers to very few chances in that first half but we went in 2-0 down.

“The message was to not concede early doors in the second half but we lost a goal to a set-play and the game was over.”

Meanwhile, Greg Docherty and Ross McCrorie are set to depart Ibrox permanently after Rangers manager Steven Gerrard ruled out sending the duo back on loan.

Hull have opened talks with the club over a move for Docherty while Hibernian are in the early stages of discussions as they plan a swoop for fellow midfielder McCrorie.

The42 is on Instagram! Tap the button below on your phone to follow us!

About the author:

Press Association

Read next:


This is YOUR comments community. Stay civil, stay constructive, stay on topic. Please familiarise yourself with our comments policy here before taking part.
write a comment

    Leave a commentcancel