Boxing day at Ibrox is amongst the first viewed on fixture release. Not for the first time our fans are missing out on the big fixtures due to increasingly frustrating Government decisions. St Mirren are today’s visitors with just 500 inside Ibrox to hopefully watch Rangers increase our lead in the league back to six points.
Rangers have responded well under Giovanni Van Bronckhorst with six straight league victories since he took charge. He has given the team their spring in their step again and we look much more confident in our performances. That run on top of two at the end of the Gerrard reign mean we could make it nine straight league wins and that is great form considering injuries and management change.
What we will face is a determined St Mirren side however, buoyed somewhat by their determined (and welcomed) draw with Celtic midweek. St Mirren are almost back to full strength from that game and Alnwick, Erahon, McGrath, Power, Flynn all start.
Rangers have Borna Barisic returning at Left Back, Nathan Patterson drops out to the bench. Scott Wright starts wide right with Kamara, Hagi and Aribo centrally. Very attacking from Rangers who go in full with McGregor, Tavernier, Bassey, Goldson, Barisic, Kamara, Aribo, Hagi, Wright, Kent and Morelos.
So it’s full steam ahead for Rangers but without the amount of fans we deserve or who deserve to be here. Let’s hope we can put on a show for them.
First half action
2 mins – Chance! Morelos effort blocked after great run by Kent, he paused slightly allowing the block, instant chance immediately for Rangers.
5 mins – Hagi shot blocked as Rangers press.
10 mins – great Rangers move, Aribo control and slide rule pass to Barisic who cross for Morelos to header over. Good play Rangers.
14 mins – GOOOALLLLL! Tavernier corner flicked on by Aribo and Scott Wright heads down and into the net! 1-0 Rangers!
18 mins – Kent drifts on and fires a shot wide.
21 mins CLOSE! Brilliant possession and we work it to Tav who bullets a shot just wide off a St Mirren defender. Great effort!
23 mins – SLACK! Hagi losses the ball and Main is sythed down on the slide by Goldson who is cautioned 📒 The resulting FK is blocked!
27 mins – GOAAALLLLL! Alfredo Morelos makes it two with a lovely cross from Borna, Morelos header is brilliantly saved but Alfie thrashes in the rebound! 2-0 Rangers!
31 mins – GREAT PLAY! Scott Wright running down the right passing two players and his cross is blocked, great by Wright, he’s in the mood today.
37 mins – SHOT! Alfredo Morelos and then Joe Aribo test Alnwick at St Mirren are literally penned in. Rangers in the mood and playing some lovely stuff.
42 mins – Morelos header just wide after excellent play by Kent.
44 mins – Morelos fires over as Rangers finish strongly.
2-0 Half Time
Half time summary
Brilliant half for Rangers, a half a full Ibrox deserves to see. We have been excellent and penned St Mirren in who have offered absolutely nothing, aside of one break for a free kick.
Rangers have been magnificent though, best half of the season? Certainly close to it and it could have been more. Kamara dominating and both full backs hugely involved. Scott Wright has done so well on the right and Alfredo looks much more in the mood up front, as he has done since Gio got here, no doubt in my mind he looks sharper and more interested now he is leading the line, he’s been brilliant so far.
More goals for Rangers if they keep going, really enjoyable so far. Keep going 👏🏻
Second half action
52 mins – CAUTION 📒 Shaugnessy pulls by Scott Wright after excellent play by Morelos to break clear. Borna fires the FK just wide!
57 mins – CHANCE! Great break and Wright to Kent at back post who plays it back to Hagi who fires well over wastefully.
60 mins – POST! Brilliant by Scott Wright who fires a shot off the post, the rebound is fired in by Borna and well saved by Alnwick. No corner given however!
64 mins – CHANCE! Aribo wins it and break, we have men over but Kent squares it and St Mirren clear, Wright drags a snap shot wide.
66 mins – WIDE! Brilliant by Kamara who leaves Power for dust, he’s been immense today, Aribo on to his left but shot well wide!
Substitutions – 68 mins
OFF Ryan Kent and Ianis Hagi
ON Fashion Sakala and Scott Arfield
69 mins – CAUTION – Erhahon cautioned for a high challenge on Tavernier 📒
70 mins – GREAT HIT! Tavernier from corner with a half volley which Alnwick is over to save, great effort by the skipper.
77 mins – Great play by Wright who gets to byline and Morelos screws wide his effort!
80 mins – Good play by Rangers as Sakala squares to Arfield who shots just wide. Rangers still all the ball but wasteful.
Full Time Rangers 2 St Mirren 0
Brilliant first half won the game for Rangers in a match which expertly demonstrated our efficient best since Giovanni Van Bronckhorst has taken charge. It was a game we should have scored six but were wasteful at times.
Rangers are much more like their old self, moving it well and passing the ball with the players looking much happier. Kamara thrived all game, winning the second ball and playing it around nicely, he was my man of the match. Morelos lead the line well and should have had more.
Rangers though will be happy and six points clear as we approach the winter break is a brilliant return for a team who faced managerial change and nine consequent wins is great form. Rangers keeping a zero becoming the mandate to reinforce that efficiency.
Another satisfying three points as winter break arrives, give Gio that help to strengthen and rangers may just not be caught. It’s nine league wins on the bounce and six clear for Rangers.
Well done Giovanni and the team