JON Daly admits Rangers must get out of the traps quicker in future if they are to continue their impressive start to the Scottish League 1 campaign.
Rangers claimed a 4-0 win against East Fife at Bayview on Saturday to secure a tenth league win in a row and maintain their 100 per cent league record so far.
But they we forced to wait until the second half, when an own goal by Gary Thom set the ball rolling before Daly bagged a hat-trick.
A week earlier, Rangers fell two goals behind in the opening eight minutes before fighting back to secure a 4-3 win at Brechin City.
Reflecting on the victory in Methil, Daly said: “The manager just told us he wanted more at half-time.
“We knew ourselves our first-half performance wasn’t up to the standards we had set ourselves.
“So it’s up to us to make sure we come out and start games better than we have being doing.
“But we didn’t concede in the first half when we weren’t at our best and gave them something to hang on to.”
Daly netted his second hat-trick of the season in a blistering 15-minute spell to ensure a comfortable win in the end.
The forward said: “It was great deliveries for my goals and I was just happy to be there to put them away.
“In the first half, East Fife deserve credit because they didn’t give us a lot of space and closed us down, but thankfully in the second half we managed to get a few goals and go on to win the game.
“We always knew once we got one we could go on and score a few more.”
The Irishman’s impressive goal haul so far means he has already revised his target for the season.
Daly said: “My best tally is 22 for Dundee United a couple of years ago.
“I always set little targets to reach. The first one was ten and I think I’ve got 11 now, so next it will be 15 and then we will just go from there.
“We’ve got games coming thick and fast now so it will be a difficult period with plenty of games and the squad is going to be utilised to the full.
“We have a massive game now on Tuesday in the semi-final of the Ramsdens Cup.”
East Fife boss Willie Aitchison said: “I doubt very much any team in the league will stop Rangers before they win the title.
“You’re talking about a team that will have a win rate this season of 85-90 per cent. They have 45 times our budget. That’s what you’re up against.”
After a fairly drab first half by the visitors, the goals began to flow after the interval.
The Rangers breakthrough came four minutes after the restart when Lee Wallace tried to pick out Daly in front of goal and Thom’s attempted clearance deflected the ball into his own net instead.
Daly scored two minutes later when he met an Arnold Peralta cross with a header that left East Fife goalkeeper Greg Paterson with no chance.
Daly was on the scoresheet again on 57 minutes. Nicky Clark nodded into the path of in-form Irishman who finished well with a looping header. His hat-trick was completed in 66 minutes when Lewis Macleod cut back and Daly stroked the ball home.
The home side could have pulled a goal back but Cammy Bell produced a fine save to deny Scott McBride a late consolation.
Rangers boss Ally McCoist was delighted his side managed to win comfortably in the end after his side had endured a tough opening half
“That was a really tough 45 minutes and it ended up a comfortable afternoon for us,” said McCoist.
“But until we get the first goal it’s up in the air because you have to keep working. The first goal was vital.
“We got it today and I thought it gave us a little bit of confidence. It knocked a bit of the stuffing out of them.
“We know what to expect when we come to these away games. The opposition never let themselves down with their commitment and standard of football.”