STEVEN GERRARD has sung the praises of his Rangers side tonight after they hammered Hibernian 6-1 at Ibrox this afternoon.
In driving rain, there was a flood of goals for the Light Blues who played some outstanding football and could even have added to their huge advantage.
Gerrard knows how difficult it is to beat a team of the quality of Hibs, and was thrilled with what his side produced to do so with such comfort.
He told RangersTV: “Hibs are a good team and they are a team who have taken points off us last season. They have outstanding players and a good manager, and I really like the way they come to places like Ibrox and believe in themselves and try to play.
“They had a 15 minute spell where they were on top and caused us quite a few problems. So my respect is there for Hibs, even though we have won by a big margin.
“We were ruthless and emphatic in front of goal. I am very pleased with our performance, but yeah, if you are doing it to one of the better teams in the league, then that is a good sign.
“You have to praise their goal. Scott Allan’s through-ball was outstanding and it’s one I would have been proud of myself as a player, and the finish was terrific as well. That’s what Hibs are about – they’ve got Horgan, Allan and Mallan – and if you give them time and space they can hurt you.
“So that was a tough task for us out there at the back end of the first half and it was about resetting at half-time, forgetting the 2-1 scoreline and really getting going again and getting back to the first 30 minutes where we were swarming all over them and playing some really nice stuff.”
Jermain Defoe grabbed a hat-trick in the rout, while Alfredo Morelos came off the bench to grab a double – the manager having been fulsome in his praise of the Colombian in the 4-2 win over Midtjylland in midweek.
“I’m pleased with both of them,” the gaffer continued. “They are two outstanding finishers and it’s great to have them fit and firing.
“If we are going to have a good season, we need both of them to stay healthy, both of them to stay hungry and want to score goals. One gets a hat-trick today and the other comes off the bench and gets a brace – Alfredo was outstanding through the week and they both have a massive part to play.
“I’m the lucky one as I have them both available. We have a decent support act as well – Sheyi gets his goal today and Greg Stewart gets his assist.
“In terms of numbers, we are in a decent place. Steven Davis’ performance was outstanding. If you take Jermain’s hat-trick away, he was probably our best player. Ryan Jack again was solid and consistent, and what a start to a career Joe Aribo has had.
“The fans have taken to him and he has taken to the fans, and I am really looking forward to seeing that blossoming as well.”
Gerrard had also asked in the build-up to the game for the Rangers support to get right behind his side, and on their performance, he added: “They were probably just as responsible for our opening 30 minutes as us. They were encouraging the boys and getting behind us – that helps us an awful lot.
“They got a little bit edgy when it went to 2-1, and understandably so. But, the players didn’t feel sorry for themselves – they reset and went again, and until we got the third goal, the game was in the balance.
“So I am pleased with the fans and pleased with the team. It was a good day for us.”