Rangers, the reigning Premiership winners, began their title defence this afternoon against Livingston. Steven Gerrard missed a few of his key first-team stars due to fitness woes, yet the champions looked relentless en route to scripting a commanding 3-0 win to greet the Ibrox crowd.
Below are the Rangers players rated in their comprehensive victory against Livingston.
Jon McLaughlin: 7
Was not at all tested all afternoon. Impressed with his decision-making and ball-playing ability from the last line of defence. Another cleansheet for the Scotsman as he might grab the ‘number 1’ role this term after making his presence known last season as Allan McGregor’s understudy.
James Tavernier: 8.5
Back in business with two assists despite starting as a right fullback. His free-kick led to Hagi’s opener, also a header late in the game set it up for Scott Wright to ensure all three points.
Connor Goldson: 7.5
Solid as always in deep defence. Kept on winning duels against Bruce Anderson and his aerial supremacy at the other end continued to trouble the Livingston players.
Leon Balogun: 7.5
Started in the absence of Filip Helander. His no-nonsense defending, tactical fouls, timely tackles and interceptions refrained Livi from threatening McLaughlin in the Rangers goal.
Calvin Bassey: 8
The absence of Borna Barisic was never felt as the youngster kept on running riot from the left with his marauding runs, crosses and smart one-twos with Kent. Performed his defensive duties with discipline and great intent, also played his part in Roofe’s goal moments before the final whistle.
Steven Davis: 7
His pressing game and quick passing proved crucial in maintaining the shape as well as balance in the middle of the park. Lost possession on a few occasions after the break but made quick recoveries, thanks to his enormous work rate.
Joe Aribo: 7
His footwork and down the middle runs helped the Gers retain possession and construct attacking moves from the centre of the pitch. Should have done better with his final delivery when Wright staged a swift counter-attack. Made way for John Lundstram just over the hour mark.
Glen Kamara: 7
Managed the game well with his technicality and intelligence. Did not allow Livi to settle in and take charge of the midfield game. Could have offered more directness while combining with his teammates high up the pitch.
Ianis Hagi: 7.5
Did extremely well to receive Tavernier’s cross from a free-kick, controlled exquisitely before finding the net early into the contest. Picked an injury minutes later and was eventually forced to leave the pitch just over the half-hour mark. Scott Wright replaced the Romanian down the right-hand flank.
Ryan Kent: 7.5
Covered a lot of ground and his link-up play with Bassey kept the visitors on their toes. Had an attempt on target but was denied comfortably by Max Stryjek. His swift skills played a key part in Wright’s stunning strike.
Fashion Sakala: 6
Caught off-side a few times and his pace caused some problems in the Livi backline. Need more time to settle in and deliver as an outright ‘number 9‘. Was taken off to be replaced by Kemar Roofe midway through the second half.
Rangers Substitutes Vs Livingston
Scott Wright: 7.5
His touches were heavy early on, but the former Aberdeen ace turned out to be a persistent threat all throughout the second half. His stunning strike doubled the lead late in the match.
John Lundstram: 6
The weight of his passes was not accurate all the time. More to come from the former Sheffield United superstar who is indeed the most high-profile summer signing due to his Premier League reputation.
Kemar Roofe: 7
Exhibited his poaching instinct in the final seconds as he finished it into the back of the net from the close range.
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