Rangers boss hails his entertainers but is delighted by special moment in Ross County win

Rangers manager Steven Gerrard awarded his team full marks for entertainment value after their 4-2 win over Ross County at Ibrox but his delight was tinged with frustration at the concession of what he described as ‘sloppy goals’.

Rangers manager Steven Gerrard saw his team maintain their four-point lead at the top of the Premiership table by beating Ross County 4-2 at Ibrox. (Photo by Craig Williamson / SNS Group)
Rangers manager Steven Gerrard saw his team maintain their four-point lead at the top of the Premiership table by beating Ross County 4-2 at Ibrox. (Photo by Craig Williamson / SNS Group)

The Scottish champions have scored 10 goals in their last two Premiership fixtures, establishing a four-point lead over Celtic at the top of the table.

They had to come from behind yet again on Sunday after Joseph Hungbo gave County an early lead as goals from Joe Aribo, Ryan Kent, Juninho Bacuna and an Alex Iacovitti own goal put them in command.

Jordan White’s late counter for County was the 13th goal Rangers have conceded in the league this season, as many as they let in during the whole of their 2020-21 title-winning campaign.

Gerrard was thrilled by his team’s firepower on a day he opted to leave leading striker Alfredo Morelos on the bench but concerned by their defensive vulnerability.

“I’m very pleased, there are a lot of positives,” said Gerrard. “Bacuna has come in today and put in a real top performance, Joe Aribo was at it, Ryan Kent scored a worldie goal, I thought Fashion Sakala’s performance was really selfless, a lot of hard work and running in behind.

“We looked really mobile and dangerous today, which is great and why we want fast players in those positions. Ten goals in two league games, we are entertaining our supporters and that is the main thing from a going forward point of view. We have just got to stop conceding these sloppy ones now.

“Their first goal was offside – very marginal, but in my position I am always going to point a finger at that. The second one is sloppy but I have taken Leon Balogun off (by that stage) to protect him because we need him for the League Cup semi final against Hibs and with Fil Helander being out injured, he is so important.

“So I am putting people in positions that they are maybe not fully up to speed with or strong in. So maybe I will take part of the responsibility for the second goal. But, in general, we need to stop conceding sloppy ones and get back to clean sheets and being tough to play against. If we do and we keep showing that quality going forward, we will be difficult to stop.”

Gerrard was also boosted by the return from injury of Ryan Jack who received a huge ovation from the Rangers fans as he made his first appearance since February as a substitute.

“You could feel that energy, feel that appreciation for what he has given to this club,” said Gerrard.

“Ryan is the type of person that represents the fans on the pitch and you could feel that energy when he came on. He deserved that because he has worked ever so hard and he has had some frustrating days. He has been down.

“It is not nice being injured but he has put in a lot of sacrifice so I wanted to reward him and boost him. Now the next two weeks for Ryan are super important so we can try and get him more ready and try and get him in and around the semi-final as well.”

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