STEVEN GERRARD has praised his “clinical” Rangers side and was delighted with how they kept pushing for more goals against Hearts this afternoon.

Alfredo Morelos and Ryan Kent handed the home side an interval cushion before a Christophe Berra own-goal and a Greg Stewart double completed the rout.

Speaking at full-time, satisfied Gerrard told RangersTV: “It was clinical and I am pleased with the second half as I thought we turned the heat up and continued to search for goals, and had people coming off the bench hungry too to take their opportunity.

“So I am very pleased with all the players. I thought our first-half performance was pretty good, it was okay, but I still think we had had gears to go into, certainly from moving the ball quicker but we have scored two excellent goals to get ourselves in front at half-time and then I am really pleased with the attitude and the mentality to go and make the win more convincing.”

The threat at the other end this afternoon from Uche Ikpeazu is always a dangerous one for opponents – but Gerrard was thrilled with how his defence handled him.

He continued: “We demanded a clean sheet before the game as I think it was the three prior where we hadn’t had one.

“That’s what I like to build my team and our team around – having that real, good structure about us and being aggressive without the ball and being hard to play against.

“So the defensive side of the game and the defensive players deserve a lot of credit as well.”

The double from Stewart was another highlight today for the manager, who revealed he was more-than deserving of his appearance from the bench today.

“I always knew I was bringing him on as he has trained ever so well,” said the boss. “I was thinking of starting him, but I wanted us to try something different with Joe Aribo there.

“But Greg was really close to getting a start there today, and I am really happy with him coming off the bench and being hungry to get on the scoresheet.

“He has certainly given me something to think about.”

The combination on the right of Aribo and Scott Arfield was a new one, but one which showed plenty of promise.

Gerrard added: “They have the license to swap and change. Scotty likes running forward and Joe likes to come and receive to feet, so it is a nice balance and they can interchange.

“These forward positions that we are playing, I want to give the players license and freedom to go and express themselves.

“They have obviously got to have tactical discipline – but go and break the rules – go and be a 10 with freedom and go and create and score and cause havoc – that’s what I want them to do.”

 

 

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