Raith reveal how plan to catch Rangers out almost paid off in spectacular style
Rovers crashed to a 3-0 defeat at the home of the cup holders but on-loan Livingston striker Esmael Goncalves went agonisingly close to silencing the stadium inside 90 seconds when a shot from his own half looped over the stranded McGregor only to narrowly miss the target.
Murray, a former Rangers team-mate of McGregor, revealed he had informed his players of the stopper’s tendency to drift outside his box, and when Connor Goldson presented the ball to Goncalves in the centre circle, the tactic to shoot from distance so nearly paid off.
"We might just have annoyed them a wee bit early doors," Murray said. "We highlighted that before the game. We felt the goalkeeper went far off his line and asked, ‘can you hit the ball early?’ We didn’t expect to be shooting from our own half, to go so close.
"But I think, for a couple of seconds, the whole stadium thought it was in and it would have been fantastic for us and fantastic for our supporters. I’m not sure it would have changed the outcome of who went through in the tie. But, look, I can’t speak highly enough of the players today."
Raith, missing seven first team regulars, kept Rangers at bay for 42 minutes before Connor Goldson headed home the opener from a Borna Barisic corner. An own goal from Ryan Nolan early in the second half and a late strike from substitute Scott Arfield completed the scoring but Murray felt Rovers could leave with their heads held high.
"We are disappointed to be out of the Scottish Cup. We wanted to go further obviously. But my emotion right now is pride in the football players, I thought they were excellent.
"I thought the discipline and the shape and structure they carried out was great. Also pride in the supporters we brought today and the appreciation they showed us towards the end.
"It’s been a tough season, we had to rebuild a little bit. We all know what happened last season at Raith Rovers and we are trying to rebuild the football club."
Want to join the conversation? Please or to comment on this article.