STEVEN GERRARD reckons Rangers were almost ‘perfect’ as they defeated Hearts 3-1 at Tynecastle this afternoon.
The Light Blues picked up from where they left off in recent weeks with a dominant showing in the Capital and raced into a thee-goal lead, though Steven Maclean pulled one back late-on to take a little bit of the shine off the day for the manager.
He told RangersTV at full-time: “There are a lot of positives to take from the game. I thought we were strong from start to finish and we stood up to Hearts.
“You know when you come to Tynecastle they are going to be physical with you and the big guy up front tries to back in, lean and foul, and they can be awkward at times and try to rely on set-pieces and mistakes you give them.
“We nearly got the perfect performance, it’s just a bit disappointing we never kept a clean sheet at the end.
“This system certainly suits the way we have been trying to play, but you have got to give the credit to the players – we give them the ideas but they have got to go and carry it out.
“We have studied Hearts really well and we knew at certain times they were going to give us the ball back in good areas and we knew if we broke fast at speed and showed quality we could go and really hurt them.
“I think on another day, we could have got five or six goals.”
Gerrard has called all season for his side to find consistency, and to that end, he has been pleased with what he has seen in the last three matches.
He continued: “That is the challenge with four games to go – and you see the support which was excellent again today – the players owe it to the supporters as at certain times we have let them down this season and we haven’t given them enough to shout about. So for me, the message is to keep earning the right for a shirt and keep showing as a team that you want to reward your supporters.
“There are 12 points to play for, and we want to go and try take them all.”
The level of football Gers have found recently has also been impressive with the manager adding: “The fans appreciate that and you can see them on the edge of their seat, and they are rewarding the players with their good play.
“We have good players and we have a style that we want to play football and entertain, and, at the moment, the players are delivering.
“We spoke about consistency though, and the challenge now is to go and make it four – we won’t achieve anything if we keep taking three or four steps forward and then one or two back.
“That doesn’t work in football – you have to be hungry and you have to keep doing everything you can to keep the run going.”
A further positive today was Gerrard handing a debut to Matt Polster, and on him, the manager said: “The idea with Matt was always to get him in, over the line as he is a good signing on a free and give him a couple of months to settle into the city and get used to the way Rangers play and get used to his teammates, and then, at the right time, introduce him to it.
“He got five or six minutes today and did well, and hopefully we can give him some more gametime from now until the end and then he will be ready for next season with a full pre-season under his belt.”