Rangers faced Russian side FC Ufa in their pursuit to book a place in the UEFA Europa League this season. The Gers showed good discipline and came out as winners in the first leg of the fixture, which was played at Ibrox, courtesy a goal from their defensive ace, Connor Goldson.
Steven Gerrard had to leave Lassana Coulibaly out of the team due to an injury. Ryan Jack came into the team in his place to partner Ovie Ejaria in the middle of the pitch. This match also marked the first outing after his return to Ibrox for new signing Kyle Lafferty, who came on as a substitute for Daniel Candeias.
The Russian side showed some resilience in the later stages of the match but failed to break the defence led by Connor Goldson and Nikola Katic. Rangers, however, would have stretched their lead further if Alfredo Morelos could have capitalised on the chances he squandered.
The Rangers players are rated as follows.
Allan McGregor: 7
Had a solid presence in between the sticks throughout the night. Made a brilliant save to deny Dmitri Zhivoglyadov or the result could have been very different.
James Tavernier: 6
Took on the Captain’s armband and led the side to an important victory. Complemented the attackers well from set-piece situations.
Connor Goldson: 9
Brilliant performance from the Englishman as he fired the ball into the net from close range to give his side an all-important advantage over their opponents ahead of the second leg. Was as dependable as ever in the heart of the defence.
Nikola Katic: 7
Kept his cool to see off the danger besides making a number of crucial blocks and clearances.
Jon Flanagan: 6
Played wholeheartedly, running up and down the pitch, looking to assist his teammates.
Ryan Jack: 6
Made a good impression after replacing Coulibaly in the middle of the pitch. Sat back into the midfield most of the times and prevented opposition attacks from building.
Scott Arfield: 7
Brought all his experience into play and dominated the proceedings in the midfield.
Ovie Ejaria: 7
Looked like a midfield general. Made important interceptions to steal the ball possession.
Ryan Kent: 6
Good work rate. Missed out on producing an end product on quite a few occasions.
Daniel Candeias: 6
Looked sharp throughout the match. Galloped forward from time to time to put in threatening crosses from the right flank.
Alfredo Morelos: 7
Agile and dangerous as ever. Was somewhat responsible for Goldson’s goal. Could have done better with the two headers.
Kyle Lafferty: 5
Was brought on in the second half to a thunderous applause and saw a booking a few moments later. Looked physically dominating.
Glenn Middleton: 5
Was brought on for Ryan Kent. Was denied a penalty in the later stages of the match.