Rangers boss Steven Gerrard shows match officials a red card

Rangers manager Steven Gerrard rounded on the officials following yesterday’s 1-0 win over Livingston and claimed only poor calls by referee Euan Anderson and his far-side assistant David Doig prevented the Ibrox men recording a comfortable victory.

Steven Gerrard confronts referee Euan Anderson at full-time at Ibrox yesterday. Picture: SNS
Steven Gerrard confronts referee Euan Anderson at full-time at Ibrox yesterday. Picture: SNS

A 59th-minute strike by Scott Arfield proved enough for Rangers to stay 10 points behind leaders Celtic, who have played a game more than their rivals. The visitors almost rescued a point when Lyndon Dykes hit the post with nine minutes left, but Gerrard believes that put a false complexion on the encounter played 24 hours after it was originally scheduled because of Storm Dennis.

In the 66th minute, a corner floated to the edge of the penalty box by James Tavernier struck the outstretched arm of Ciaron Brown, but no penalty was given, while Alfredo Morelos was wrongly flagged for offside by Doig after he had found the net six minutes later. “I don’t like talking about officials, especially after a defeat, because you can look like you have the violins out or are looking for excuses,” said the Rangers manager. “But, after a win, I think the timing is right and I must say I was disappointed in them today.

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“The result is very important to us. Everyone knows we are not firing on all cylinders, so it is important we get the job done and get over the line, and we did that. But people will look at the highlights and think Rangers rode their luck because Livingston hit the post.

“But, if we had the right officials today, that would have been a 3-0. If we score the penalty, which I am not sure you would back us for right now, we could have been out of sight and more comfortable if the officiating was better.

“The Morelos one was onside and it is a blatant handball. The referee said it is because of the conditions he didn’t mean it. He said to Connor Goldson ‘I couldn’t give it because of the conditions, he didn’t mean it’. That is new. I think when the officials look back at their performance they will be disappointed.”

Gerrard revealed that Andy Halliday was fortunate to escape a serious eye injury after he required stitches in a wound on his brow as the result of falling into an upturned stool when crashing over an advertising hoarding at the side of the pitch. Following treatment and the insertion of stiches, Halliday completed the match with his head bandaged. “A very, very lucky boy. Extremely lucky boy,” said Gerrard.

Meanwhile, the Rangers manager stated he will be paying close interest to the situation developing south of the Border that has ensued from Manchester City’s two-year European ban from Uefa over breaching financial fair play rules. Reports have stated that the English Premier League will now establish a commission to look into similar infringements at domestic level between 2014 and 2016 – the period that covers their 2014 title success achieved by edging out by four points a Liverpool captained by Gerrard captained. If City are found guilty, it has been suggested that this could lead to title stripping as the result of a retrospective points penalty being applied.

“We will wait and see,” said the Anfield club icon. “From a Uefa point of view, it is a real strong sentence. I’m sure they will appeal so we will wait and see what the outcome is. Then we will see if the Premier League act from there. I will give you a comment once I know what the Premier League decide to do.

“If you look at the severity of the punishment from Uefa, something has gone badly wrong. So I’m really interested to see the outcome of that. Until I get the punishment from the Premier League, I won’t comment. But I’m really, really interested in it… for obvious reasons. As I sit here right now, congratulations to Manchester City [for the 2014 title]. They are champions. Until things develop – if they develop – it’s all ifs and buts. I’ve got nothing to say on the matter.”