RANGERS were held to a goalless draw by St Johnstone this afternoon in the Scottish Premiership.

Despite their best efforts, the Light Blues were unable to break down the stubborn Saints at Ibrox as they made it back-to-back games without scoring.

From the side which was also held to a 0-0 draw by Kilmarnock in the Scottish Cup a week ago, boss Steven Gerrard made four changes.

Out went the suspended Allan McGregor as well as Andy Halliday, Ryan Jack and Scott Arfield, with their places taken by Wes Foderingham, Steven Davis, Glen Kamara for a debut and Steven Davis.

The early moments were dominated by the visitors in terms of possession, although at no point were they able to trouble Foderingham in the nets this afternoon for the Light Blues.

A clever corner routine from Ryan Kent to release Daniel Candeias along the 18-yard line ended with the Portuguese shooting just over while Steven Davis improvised to send a Jermain Defoe ball goalwards on the volley, albeit that effort ended on the roof of the net.

Connor Goldson headed a Borna Barisic corner into the arms of Saints stopper Cammy Bell before Kamara came close to a debut goal as he saw an effort blocked just shy of the line by Richard Foster after picking up a rebound from a Kent shot.

The chances were beginning to mount up for the hosts, with captain James Tavernier next to go close with a curling effort just over the bar.

The first half, however, was punctuated with a number of niggly fouls in both directions, meaning both sides struggled to build up any real head of steam.

Indeed, the final opportunity of the half fell to Saints, with Chris Kane bringing out a decent stop from Foderingham at the keeper’s near post.

The second half followed much the same pattern, with it taking a full 12 minutes for any real effort f note, and that came with Joe Worrall volleying a Barisic free-kick over the bar on the turn.

A Barisic ball from the left was then deflected into the path of Candeias, unmarked around 15-yards from goal, but he volleyed over.

That was to be Candeias’ last action of the game before being replaced by Kyle Lafferty, while Glenn Middleton came on for Steven Davis as boss Gerrard looked to find a breakthrough.

Joe Shaugnessy brought out a wonder save from Foderingham on 74 minutes with a header on the end of a Liam Craig free-kick; the Gers stopper somehow getting across goal to his left to turn away the effort of the defender.

Lafferty three times shot wide of goal; firstly as he turned on a Kent ball to the edge of the area, then after being released by Defoe before bringing down another Kent ball with his chest, turning, but narrowly missing the target.

But Gers were unable to muster any further efforts, with the visitors leaving Ibrox the happier of the two sides, and indeed they could have won it at the death, with a Blair Alston effort coming back off the bar after he lobbed Foderingham from the edge of the box.

 

RANGERS: Foderingham; Tavernier, Worrall, Goldson, Barisic; McCrorie (Coulibaly, 76), Davis (Middleton, 59), Kamara; Candeias (Lafferty, 68), Defoe, Kent.

SUBS: Firth, Halliday, Katic, Polster.

ST JOHNSTONE: Bell, Tanser, Shaughnessy, Davidson, Kane, Wotherspoon (Callachan, 89), Kerr, Foster, Craig, Goss (Alston, 71), Kennedy (Swanson, 80).

SUBS: Hurst, Hendry, Gordon, Keown.

REFEREE: Steven McLean

ATTENDANCE: 49549

 

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