Pedro Caixinha concerned about long-ball St Johnstone

Rangers manager Pedro Caixinha has expressed concern about St Johnstone's direct play. Pic: SNS/Roddy Scott
Rangers manager Pedro Caixinha has expressed concern about St Johnstone's direct play. Pic: SNS/Roddy Scott
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Rangers manager Pedro Caixinha has told his team to improve when facing “long-ball” experts St Johnstone.

READ MORE - Why St Johnstone are Scotland’s answer to Atletico Madrid

The Light Blues were heading for a third draw against St Johnstone this season before Emerson Hyndman netted a late winner in their previous meeting on 1 March, before Caixinha took over.

However, the Portuguese coach has watched the Perth team in action and feels they are the kind of team Rangers struggle against.

Ahead of Sunday’s final Ladbrokes Premiership game at McDiarmid Park, Caixinha said: “I expect the same that we watch them play all the time: a very strong team on long balls, a very strong team on second balls. A team that waits for some sort of mistake to get a quick transition and quick counter-attack.

“So we need to be clever, to know how to perform against these teams.

“And we are struggling to understand how to perform against these teams that take the ball from us and play long balls and get stronger on the second wave and on the second ball.

“We need to find a solution to face them, which is having the ball rather than giving the ball to the opponent.”

Caixinha could blood more young players after fielding the likes of Myles Beerman, David Bates and Aiden Wilson in recent weeks.

“They have had a chance to play and maybe a couple more of them will have the chance to start on Sunday, more than on Wednesday,” he said.