STEVEN GERRARD believes Rangers’ “quality came through” as they netted four times without reply away at Ross County tonight.
The Light Blues were in irresistible form at times to record their biggest ever win against the Staggies – and naturally, boss Gerrard was a pleased man when he spoke to RangersTV at a frozen Global Energy Stadium.
“I’m very pleased,” he beamed. “It’s three important points just before we go into a semi-final, so it was important we kept focused tonight and I thought we started the game on the front-foot, competed really well and we earned the right to play.
“Then our quality came through and we scored four excellent goals. There are a lot of positives – a clean sheet as well and a lot of strong performances. The fans too were excellent.
“Tav [James Tavernier] was superb and I am pleased for him as obviously he has been in the firing line of late, but I thought he was immaculate tonight.
“Ryan Jack with two goals – he got excited! Plus, another couple for Buff [Alfredo Morelos] so I am very pleased.
“I thought we got sloppy in the last 20 minutes – the game is won, but I want the standards to remain the same because goal difference could be important and I don’t want us putting ourselves where we are risking injury and taking too many touches and slowing things down so we need to just remain with the same standards all the way through.
“But in the main, it was a very strong performance.”
The doubles for Morelos and Jack both thrilled the gaffer who continued: “Ryan was outstanding in his performance, and I had the luxury where I was able to take him off and rest him as he is so important for us.
“But he scored two fantastic goals from the edge of the box and Buffalo, I think Sheyi [Ojo] does magnificently well for the first goal – passes it, runs and then puts a delicious ball to the back post.
“The second goal was all about Buff really – it was a lovely little slide-pass from Joe Aribo and it is what we have been working on a lot in training.
“From there, he just smashes the side of the net off, and it was a fantastic finish again.”
The level of control the Light Blues had in the Highlands was also something the manager noted, and he said: “I think they had one moment where they needed a bit of luck with the deflection and the ball hits the post.
“I am delighted we got the clean sheet as I thought with the way we did the basics and the way we competed and did the dirty bits tonight, I thought we deserved a clean sheet.
“In possession, we had a lot of control and a lot of strong performances besides a bit of sloppiness and laziness in the last 20 minutes.”
The manager also praised the club’s supporters for the way they got behind club captain Tavernier tonight, adding: “I have been a player when things are not going your way and you are in the firing line and you are fighting to get your top form back.
“The last thing you need is teammates getting on your back, your manager getting on your back and supporters ooh-ing and aargh-ing.
“The supporters here are fantastic – they are up there with the best in the world, there is no doubt about that.
“But sometimes I need to plea at times just for a bit of support for maybe an individual – that is what I did and I thought they got right behind James tonight and it is no surprise he performed really well.”