Rangers 1-1 Aberdeen extras: Ryan Kent and Lewis Ferguson centre of attention but eyes drawn to player with the 'Gazza' makeover

The key points as Rangers’ lead over Celtic in the title race is restricted to four points.

Rangers winger Ryan Kent is sent off by referee Kevin Clancy in the 83rd minute of the Scottish champions' 1-1 draw against Aberdeen at Pittodrie. (Photo by Craig Williamson / SNS Group)
Rangers winger Ryan Kent is sent off by referee Kevin Clancy in the 83rd minute of the Scottish champions' 1-1 draw against Aberdeen at Pittodrie. (Photo by Craig Williamson / SNS Group)

Player of the match

There were contenders aplenty in the Aberdeen midfield where captain Scott Brown, as ever, relished the fray against Rangers and Brighton loanee Teddy Jenks also made a big impression.

Sign up to our Football newsletter

But the pick of the bunch was Lewis Ferguson who capped a fine display on his 150th appearance for the Dons by converting his team’s second half equaliser from the penalty spot.

The 22-year-old was outstanding as Aberdeen imposed themselves against a Rangers engine room missing the influential trio of Joe Aribo, Scott Arfield and Steven Davis.

Letdown

Despite the selection issues he faced, Rangers manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst would be disappointed by what was by far the least fluent and controlled display his team have produced since he succeeded Steven Gerrard.

Turning point

The denial of a strong penalty claim for Aberdeen in the 20th minute, when Ryan Hedges lobbed the ball over the advancing Allan McGregor and was then clipped by the Rangers goalkeeper, was followed second later by Ianis Hagi finishing off a sweeping counter-attack to give the visitors the lead.

Had Aberdeen had the chance to go in front from the spot, they looked more than capable of inflicting a first defeat on Rangers since van Bronckhorst took charge.

Ref watch

Kevin Clancy had his work cut out for him when he dished out nine yellow cards - two of them to Rangers winger Ryan Kent who could have no complaints about his foolish dismissal which left his team hanging on grimly for a point.

Clancy could have done with some help from his assistant Graeme Stewart who surely had the best view of the incident when Hedges went down under McGregor’s challenge but the referee made amends of sorts to Aberdeen by spotting the Alfredo Morelos handball which allowed Ferguson to equalise from 12 yards.

Gave us a giggle

At 34, Jonny Hayes is still a little young to be having even an inkling of a mid-life crisis. But the winger’s peroxide-blonde hair makeover, reminiscent of the one Paul Gascoigne effected at Euro ‘96, suggests the Aberdeen winger is trying to recapture something of his more youthful days.

Don't miss out on a 30 per cent discount on an annual sports subscription. We have a special offer throughout January where you can get a reduced package. Visit https://www.scotsman.com/subscriptions/sports for more details.

 0 comments

Want to join the conversation? Please or to comment on this article.