The Ibrox rearguard has now conceded 12 goals in the opening six league matches – a record which could cost the team dearly. But this match should never have been allowed to reach that point as Neil McCann’s classy strike on 56 minutes should have been enough for a win. The match was tightly poised for an almost an hour and it seemed that a single goal would be all that was needed to claim full points.
When McCann struck it should have been all over but smash and grab sub Juan Sara nicked a goal which earned the Dark Blues a point. With Michael Mols, Ronald de Boer and Arthur Numan packed into the starting line-up the stage looked set for an interesting afternoon against Ivano Bonetti’s unorthodox line-up. It was Mols, making his return after a 10-month knee injury, who created Gers’ first chance of the game. SPL debut boy de Boer showed neat footwork on the left before floating a delicate cross into the box which was met on the volley by Mols.
Fortunately for Dundee the Dutch ace failed to get enough power behind the shot to trouble dens Park keeper Robert Douglas. Dick Advocaat’s side continued to exert pressure on Dundee but staunch defending and the Gers’ failure to create any clear-cut openings kept the scoreline blank in the first-half.
Just before half-time Billy Dodds should have put the visitors ahead after a telling pass from Tugay Kerimoglu. As Dodds raced through on goal and fired his effort off the post the lineman raised his flag in response to howls from the away support. The influence of Tugay in midfield eventually came to bear on the match when he picked out McCann on the left. The Scotland star drew the keeper and stroked the ball home after 56 minutes. Dodds could have doubled the lead moments later when he headed wide from a McCann cross.
Advocaat brought on Peter Lovenkrands for McCann and the Dundee manager was replaced by Sara. An immediate mistake in the Rangers defence allowed the new arrival to roll the ball into the net as Lorenzo Amoruso and Stefan Klos looked on.
It was always going to be inevitable that the failure of Rangers to kill off the Dundee side would come back to haunt them in a game they should have tied up with relative ease.