RANGERS 3-1 ST MIRREN
(Wallace 4′ & 26′, Shiels 89′; Howieson 28′)
angers got off to a winning start in the Ladbrokes Championship despite a spirited performance from a young St. Mirren side.
The skipper; Lee Wallace got the scoring started following a series of corners. Wallace managed to grab his second when he slid the ball past Ridgers to make it 2-0.
Kiwi international – Cameron Howieson grabbed his first goal for the buddies to quickly make it 2-1. Early in the second half, Captain Thompson had the chance to equalise following a superb run by Paul McMullen to win the penalty; however he skied his penalty.
Dean Shiels came on from the bench to secure the points for Rangers at an atmospheric Ibrox on the opening day of the season.
The first chance of the game came to Nicky Law who broke free in the box but his shot was intercepted by Sean Kelly at the last instance.
Rangers were red hot in the opening minutes and the crowd were rocking. A series of corners tested the young buddies defence – and they eventually buckled. McKay’s corner was not cleared away as Baird went down injured. Wallace free in the box, rattled it into the top of the net.
St. Mirren had a chance following going a goal down when Foderingham’s kick went straight to Agnew, however the chance was blown by the overlapping Conlan who’s cross went high into the Copeland Road stand.
Tavernier had a chance to double the Gers’ lead after great midfield play by Halliday and McKay found the bombing right back; however his shot went well wide of Ridgers goal.
Rangers began to press for a second goal as the hosts look to attack the full backs. Law’s cross into the box found McKay on the far side; the youngster’s half volley was ambitious but went well over.
The second goal of the game eventually came when the buddies switched off in defence and Holt was allowed to play through Wallace who slid the ball into Ridgers near’ post to double their lead.
St. Mirren bounced back quickly after losing the second goal, Paul McMullen drove at the Rangers defence and played a beautiful through ball past Kiernan to find Howieson; who slid the ball past Foderingham to make it 2-1.
The Gers’ could’ve grabbed their third goal when Waghorn unleashed a monstrous shot from distance that teased the Ibrox crowd before whistling over Ridgers crossbar.
A superb counter attack by Rangers and more notably Lee Wallace earned a standing ovation from the Ibrox crowd shortly before half-time. Wallace picked up the ball deep in his half, performed excellent skill to get away from McMullen before driving and feeding through Walsh – however the yongsters shot went just over.
Early in the second half; McMullen drove deep into Rangers half before being took down in the box by James Tavernier to win a penalty for the buddies. Captain Steven Thompson stepped up in the cauldron to sky his penalty well over the bar. A sickener for the St. Mirren captain.
The penalty miss was a wake-up call for the Gers as they realised the game was far from over. Waghorn showed tremendous skill to get away from two St. Mirren defenders who then slid the ball across goal but there were no takers.
Jack Baird was putting in a man of the match performance for the Buddies, however a massive flashpoint for the youngster came when he was extremely late for tackle on Lee Wallace.
Rangers sealed the win in the dying embers of the game. St. Mirren were pushing for an equaliser however, on the counter attack as Templeton crossed the ball to Shiels who initially had his first effort saved from a heroic effort by Ridgers; but the Northern Irishman scrambled in the winner to the delight of the Rangers support.
- 25 Foderingham
- 02 Tavernier Booked
- 04 Kiernan
- 27 Wilson
- 05 Wallace
- 23 Holt (Shiels – 61′ )
- 16 Halliday
- 07 Law
- 19 McKay (Templeton – 84′ )
- 33 Waghorn
- 48 Walsh (Clark – 61′ )
- 11 Templeton
- 14 Clark
- 20 Aird
- 22 Shiels
- 32 Kelly
- 42 Hardie
- 45 Thompson
- 01 Ridgers
- 02 Naismith
- 05 Conlan
- 15 Baird Booked
- 03 Kelly Booked
- 07 McMullan
- 11 Howieson (Morgan – 67′ )
- 10 Carswell
- 16 Agnew
- 14 Mallan (Gow – 82′ )
- 09 Thompson (Gallagher – 73′ )
- 06 Goodwin
- 08 Gow
- 17 Morgan
- 18 Mclear
- 19 Cuddihy
- 22 Gallagher
- 32 Wilks
Ref: Kevin Clancy