Rangers assistant Gary McAllister marvels at condition of Jermain Defoe after striker bags landmark goal

Rangers assistant manager Gary McAllister believes Jermain Defoe belongs to a select band of strikers capable of scoring the kind of goal he produced in the 2-0 win over Livingston at Ibrox on Sunday.

Jermain Defoe celebrates the 300th goal of his club career in Rangers' 2-0 win over Livingston at Ibrox. (Photo by Rob Casey / SNS Group)

Defoe took a lofted through ball from James Tavernier in his stride and guided a magnificent first time left foot shot low into the net as Rangers moved six points clear at the top of the Scottish Premiership table.

It was the former England forward’s 300th goal in club football as the 38-year-old returned to the Rangers starting line-up for the first time since January.

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McAllister knows all about longevity in the professional game, having extended his own playing career late into his 30s himself, and he was full of praise for Defoe’s latest contribution.

“We saw another fantastic goal today from a player who has had a fantastic career,” said McAllister. “He is probably coming towards the end of it but that sort of movement towards the ball and spinning in behind to get the finish is pretty special.

“There are not many players who can do that. He is a player I have always admired from afar. He is someone always capable of clever bits of movement and finishing.

“Today was another example of that. The fact he is playing at the age he is now is a credit to him.

“He is in fantastic shape. He’s had a couple of injuries recently but, like Kemar Roofe for us against Standard Liege last Thursday night, it’s another player coming back into the team and producing. Jermain did that today.

“We have four strikers now with Jermain, Alfredo Morelos, Kemar and Cedric Itten, so it’s very competitive in that area of the pitch.”

Rangers are now unbeaten in 16 matches in all competitions so far this season and took full advantage of Celtic dropping two points against Aberdeen at Pittodrie earlier on Sunday.

“We try to keep our focus here,” added McAllister. “It’s very difficult to stay away from getting to know the Celtic result but we try to keep that away from the players as much as possible. Tunnel vision. Just do your job. The job was to get three points. And we got them.”

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