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Gerrard heaps praise on Barisic as free-kick maintains Rangers' perfect start

The Croatian’s 25-yard free-kick settled a bruising Scottish Premiership clash in the 59th minute.

Rangers players and fans celebrate together after Borna Barisic's winner.
Rangers players and fans celebrate together after Borna Barisic's winner.
Image: PA Wire/PA Images

RANGERS MANAGER STEVEN Gerrard praised Borna Barisic for the “moment of magic” that secured a hard-fought 1-0 win at St Mirren on Sunday.

Barisic’s 25-yard free-kick settled a bruising Scottish Premiership clash in the 59th minute.

The Croatian’s goal extended Rangers’ undefeated start to the season.

Former Liverpool captain Gerrard was delighted with Barisic’s contribution as his side kept the pressure on champions Celtic, who host Hearts on Sunday.

“It’s a moment of magic. I always felt that it would take a moment of brilliance from one of the front men or wide men, or a really well-executed free-kick,” Gerrard said.

“Thankfully Borna stepped up and he deserves all the credit that he gets. I’ve seen him do that many times on the training pitch but it’s alright doing that when nobody’s there.

“You’ve got to do it in big moments so fair play to him.

“He’d be the first to admit he’s played well at times but underperformed at other times. But he got his opportunity today and took it with both hands.

“Not just with his free-kick. I thought his all-round game was strong.”

Gerrard made five changes to the team who had drawn away to Legia Warsaw in the Europa League on Thursday and said he would need to utilise his full squad should Rangers qualify for the group stage by getting past the Polish club at Ibrox this Thursday.

“If we get the chance to play Thursday and Sunday every week then it’s difficult to get everyone recovered and fresh for the next challenge,” he said.

“I won’t make that many changes all the time. But I’ll just need to see what the European games take out of certain people.

“Criticism will fly if I don’t get it right but I have to do what I think is best for the squad.”

- © AFP, 2019

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