Pedro Caixinha praises Alfredo Morelos' fighting qualities

Pedro Caixinha believes Alfredo Morelos is destined to become a prolific marksman for Rangers after scoring his first two goals for the club.

Rangers' Daniel Candeias (centre) celebrates his goal with Alfredo Morelos (left) and Fabio Cardoso at full-time. Picture: Paul Devlin/SNS
Rangers' Daniel Candeias (centre) celebrates his goal with Alfredo Morelos (left) and Fabio Cardoso at full-time. Picture: Paul Devlin/SNS
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The 21-year-old Colombian striker, signed in the summer from HJK Helsinki where he netted 46 times in 62 appearances, grabbed his double in the 6-0 rout of Dunfermline at Ibrox which sent Rangers into the quarter-finals of the Betfred Cup.

“That’s just two goals in a long career of scoring many more goals for Rangers,” said manager Caixinha. “Strikers live on goals, it’s important for Alfredo. The levels of confidence make a difference to him.

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“What really pleased me was the anger and the passion he played with. He fought for every ball, he was always fighting and he was in the right place to score.”

Rangers face a short trip across Glasgow to take on Partick Thistle in the last eight of the tournament next month but Caixinha was more concerned with the here and now as his team built on their opening weekend Premiership win at Motherwell.

“It’s too far away [to think about Partick Thistle],” he said. “It’s going to be a game that we need to fight in to get to the semi-finals.

“But we’re focused on the immediate. It was important to have this performance and result tonight, to get through in the competition. Our focus now is on Saturday and Hibernian. I really enjoyed it tonight, I was really pleased with the quality, commitment, pace and rhythm.

“The leadership was good, controlling the game. We were much more efficient. I have to be pleased with that.

“One point I’m really pleased is how the team got on top. We have been really ready for the game, ready to fight for every inch. The scoring means we have freedom in all positions. We ask the players to be dynamic and play aggressive football.

“Everybody wants to shoot and attack spaces. Then, when we don’t have the ball, we have to leave the opponents thinking they are playing against 22 players.”

Dunfermline manager Allan Johnston was left dismayed by his team’s performance which failed to match the standards they had set during a group stage campaign in which they eliminated Hearts.

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“We were really poor tonight,” said Johnston. “You can see the quality Rangers have when they get the confidence to play. We made it far too easy for them.”

In the other quarter-final ties, holders Celtic were drawn away to Dundee, Motherwell will host Aberdeen and Hibernian were given a home tie against Livingston, the last Championship side left in the competition.