Rangers put in a strong performance to beat Dundee 4-0 at Ibrox. Every player had excellent moments in the match, and a few were particularly impressive. When the team beat Dundee towards the end of last season by the same scoreline, it didn’t feel like it was deserved. This time around, Dundee were lucky not to concede more. Below is how I believe each player rated on the day.
ALLAN McGREGOR – 7
Not an awful lot to do on the day in terms of shot-stopping, as Dundee struggled to get shots on target. One save in the second half was strong, but no other moment troubled him. His kicking was excellent, finding the full backs every time. As always, he was a big voice in organising the defence and maintaining that clean sheet.
JAMES TAVERNIER – 8
Tavernier scored his penalty well and was always looking to be involved in an attacking sense. He ran at the Dundee defence often which created chances on numerous occasions. His crossing wasn’t as accurate as it can be, but the number of chances he had to get the ball in meant that it didn’t have to be in many ways. Dundee played a rather lopsided system with their width only really coming on their right. That meant Tavernier didn’t have a lot to do defensively.
BORNA BARISIC – 8
Barisic was composed on the ball and a constant attacking option throughout. At one point in the first half, he got back to block a shot by Ngwatala after a quick Dundee counter attack. Involved in the play which led to the first goal, having chased down a seemingly lost cause seconds earlier. Barisic has more to offer as he’s still settling in, but this was a strong performance.
CONNOR GOLDSON – 7
In the first half, Dundee created a few chances on the counter-attack. Goldson read the danger well and defended strongly. The goal which was chopped off incorrectly came from him showing real composure in his own area and finding Kent with a good pass. He moved the ball out wide quickly, and in the second half, he had little to do defensively in many respects.
NIKOLA KATIC – 7
Like Goldson, Katic was strong when called upon. He won pretty much every header and dominated physically. On the ball, he kept it simple as Dundee looked to press at certain points. Yet again he looked far more composed and experienced than his age would suggest.
ANDY HALLIDAY – 8
Halliday did an excellent job in midfield. He won the ball often through reading the game well and using his strength to get into good positions. He was also good when on the ball, finding passes quickly and keeping the tempo high. With both full-backs getting forward, Halliday showed good tactical discipline to cover for them. In the second half, he was one of the main reasons Rangers were camped in the Dundee half and dominated the game.
SCOTT ARFIELD – 8
Arfield played a couple of roles in midfield and shone in both. His link-up play led to the goal for Kent, and he was unlucky with another couple of good passes and flicks. When asked to drop deeper in the second half, he showed for the ball constantly and played as a deep-lying playmaker. As always, he put in a real shift defensively as well. He’s still chasing his first competitive goal and should have scored with a great chance in the first half.
LASSANA COULIBALY – 8
Coulibaly would have had a higher rating had he not been substituted early in the second half. He scored the first goal, was unlucky with an effort not long after that, and seemed to win every challenge he went in for. With Halliday playing the defensive role, Coulibaly was free to get involved all over the pitch. That meant he was a threat going forward and played some good passes which prompted attacks.
DANIEL CANDEIAS – 9
From very early in the match you could see that Candeias was going to play well. He was getting a lot of space on the right as Dundee didn’t seem to have anyone playing wide left to back up their left back. He linked up excellently with Tavernier and Morelos to create a number of chances on that side of the pitch. His cross led to the mistake by Kusunga for the fourth goal, and many other chances he created were spurned. Excellent pressing and use of the ball throughout.
ALFREDO MORELOS – 7
Morelos was denied a good goal by an incorrect call from the assistant referee early in the match. He also missed a great chance in the second half when he had time in the box to try and pick a spot but saw his shot blocked. His link-up play and ability to hold off defenders meant he was vital to how Rangers played. The first goal could have been his, but Coulibaly stole it from him at the last second. He was involved in the move for Kent’s goal and won the penalty for the third. Despite not being as sharp as he can be, he still made a big impact.
RYAN KENT – 9
This match suited Kent perfectly. Dundee were rather attack-minded and open which gave the on-loan winger loads of space to run into. His first goal for the club came from some strong running and excellent link-up play. On numerous occasions, he beat the full-back and got crosses into the box, with more than one unlucky not to be converted. A good save prevented him from getting a second goal, and his passing and vision meant that Rangers were a huge threat going forward. He’ll take a lot of confidence from this match.
GLENN MIDDLETON – 5
Middleton did well when he came on, running at the Dundee defence and beating his man more than once. He also showed good reactions to score his first goal for the club after the mistake by Kusunga.
KYLE LAFFERTY – 3
Lafferty got involved and was desperate to score. One effort was ruled out for offside, and another saw a header hit the bar.
EROS GREZDA – 2
Grezda got around 20 minutes, but the game was winding down somewhat. He showed a lot of good movement and constantly asked for the ball. Unlucky with a cut-back when played through.
How did you rate the players on the day? Tweet us @abouttherangers with your thoughts!