DUNDEE were the victors on Tayside tonight as Rangers yet again were left to rue a plethora of missed chances.
After taking almost total ownership of the first half without finding a breakthrough, Mark O’Hara struck twice either side of a Josh Windass equaliser to consign Gers to a second defeat in a week.
Gers created the first chance of the game after five minutes. From the right, Daniel Candieas dug-out a superb, left-footed cross to the back-post for Kenny Miller.
Miller managed to get his head to the ball, albeit under pressure, and he headed straight into the arms of goalkeeper Elliot Parish.
Then, after some good build-up play involving Miller and Alfredo Morelos down on the left, Miller managed to find Ryan Jack in space 20-yards from goal for a shot which was deflected behind. That forced a pair of corners for Gers which ended in a foul going the way of Dundee as Miller flung himself acrobatically at the ball in an attempt to divert it goalwards.
At the other end, Wes Foderingham was called into action to tip a Faissal El Bakhtaoui effort from distance over the bar, but it was a rare foray into the visiting half for Neil McCann’s men who were being put under constant pressure from Gers in the opening minutes.
Some of the away fans thought Morelos had ended his scoring drought with a 25-yard piledriver, but the ball hit the outside as opposed to the back of the net. A further effort from distance from Josh Windass followed, but it was an easy take for Parish.
The chances, once again, were mounting up for Gers, and their latest and best opportunity came on 34 minutes. Ryan Jack played a defence-splitting pass through for Candeias to put him one-on-one with Parish, but the Portuguese found only the large frame of the stopper as opposed to the back of the net.
Gers were in need of a little luck in front of goal, and they almost got it as Josh Meekings deflected a Candeias cross off the crossbar before the ball bounced down on the line and the Dees managed to smuggle it to safety.
Another cross, this time from Windass, was almost met by Morelos, with the Columbian colliding with the post as he attempted to meet with the ball. He attempted to play on but eventually had to be replaced by Eduardo Herrera.
As half time approached, the Light Blues’ latest chance saw a James Tavernier free-kick dropped onto the penalty spot for Miller to meet on the slide, but again, it was too easy for Parish.
The second half began with a warning that Dundee were still a threat to be reckoned with. Declan John was short with pass back to Foderingham that was seized upon by Sofien Moussa. After Gers got bodies back, the ball eventually broke the way of Roarie Deacon, but he shot straight at the Gers number one from the edge of the box.
As happened with the Hamilton Accies game last week, Rangers were made to rue their chances as Dundee took the lead on 66 minutes.
A Jon Aurtenexte free-kick wasn’t properly dealt with inside the box by Gers before the ball bounced the way of Mark O’Hara for a simple finish beyond the reach of Foderingham.
Graeme Murty’s men showed a good reaction to going behind however, and within four minutes, they were level through Josh Windass.
Ross McCrorie popped-up on the right win and crossed the ball into the area. It was met easily by Josh Meekings, but he cleared it only as far as the lurking Windass just inside the area. With a first-time effort, he slammed the ball high into the net to give the visitors the platform to win the game in the final 20 minutes.
A superb run from Declan John from his own half ended with him playing a neat one-two with Candeias out on the right wing. From there, Candeias found Kenny Miller at the back post in plenty of space, but his effort went right across goal and out for a goal kick.
And, yet again, missed chances were to haunt Rangers as Dundee went back into the ledundeead with 10 minutes remaining.
Scott Allan was allowed to ghost unchallenged into the box before the box broke the way of O’Hara to grab the second of the night.
Gers huffed and puffed in the closing minutes to try and again find a route back into the match, but it wasn’t to come with Dundee collecting all three points.
RANGERS: Foderingham; Tavernier, McCrorie, Wilson, John; Candeias (Hardie. 84), Jack, Holt, Miller; Windass, Morelos (Herrera, 45+1).
SUBS: Alnwick, Pena, Hodson, Bates, Barjonas.
DUNDEE: Parish, Kerr, Kamara, O’Hara, Aurtenexte, McGowan, El Bakhtaoui, Deacon (Allan, 79), Hendry, Meekings, Haber (Moussa, 43).
SUBS: Ferrie, Holt, Leitch-Smith, Extabeguren, Curran.