Rangers player ratings: Dundee United defeated 2-0 in penultimate game at Ibrox

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Ibrox hosts its second Premiership Old Firm match of the season, the third of the campaign – and it’s a big one.

It would be asking a lot for Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s team to live up to the pulsating performance of Thursday when they secured a place in Seville for the Europa League Final on May 18.

They didn’t reach those heights against United in a match that carried significance for the Premiership title race. Anything other than a home win would make mathematically certain the top league title was bound for Celtic Park.

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At half-time Benjamin Siegrist had been called into action and his post struck but no breakthrough for the home side. United were seeking a boost to their European ambitions themselves but saw a point denied by a second-half penalty from James Tavernier and a goal from substitute Amad Dillo.

Back in for Allan McGregor and rarely troubled throughout the 90 minutes.

Giovanni van Bronckhorst then used the opportunity to field some youngsters and give more rest to his first-team after an energy-sapping few days.

Here is how his players rated in the 2-0 win.

Fired the important penalty that extends the title race, mathematically, another few days. After leading an emotionally charged evening he showed no signs of a hangover in a typical display of the captain. Replaced by youngster Adam Devine for final 25 minutes.
Subdued Tony Watt and took a backseat to allow Leon King a step forward and youngster spread play well. Heart in mouth moment when backpass rolled towards empty goal but McLaughlin spared blushes on penultimate Ibrox appearance – but two finals to follow for the modern-day stalwart
First start and no signs of nerves. Stroked passes out from the back and untroubled by United in the first half before moving left to accommodate flurry of young changes introduced by van Bronckhorst.
Croatian left-back looked particularly spritely and had a zip about him after a shift on Thursday evening. Replaced by Charlie McCann on 65 minutes and serenaded by the stands.
American exhibits the utility attributes van Bronckhorst likes and after starting in midfield moved back to partner Goldson. Tidy enough without catching the eye.
Anchored the midfield and experience was increasingly important as average age dropped considerably in the latter stages of the second half and the game finely poised.
Won the penalty after being wiped out by Siegrist. Played on the shoulder and frequently found but goal proved elusive. Supplied the second for Diallo with driving run and lay-off. Harshly booked midway through the first half.
Far from dominant but picked and placed his team-mates, lifting the ball over to earn the penalty incident, also hit the post and offside in the first half. Technical ability to make match-winning contributions, even without full fitness, could prove crucial as Rangers pursue silverware in one-off ties later this month.
Denied by a good save from Siegrist in the first half after clever link with Sakala, general link-up play in the first half created openings but no goal for the Canadian international to mark his contract extension. Replaced by Alex Lowry.
Given a consistent run of starts by van Bronckhorst but after exertions of midweek failed to make much headway against United’s defense before being replaced by Amad at the interval.
Took opportunity to give minutes to those who needed it and give youngsters a taste plus full 90 minutes for Leon King – and still ensured a win.
Brought a gallus air to the second half after replacing Wright at the interval. He suffered several severe challenges but bounced back and gained his winger’s revenge with some cheeky flicks against Ross Graham on the right side, and his goal from him.
On for final 25 minutes but though got on the ball, space to create was hard to find.
On with 25 minutes to go and showed confidence and power in the center of midfield.
Tough act to follow replacing James Tavernier but stepped up in a confident display for the final 25 minutes on the right side.
On late for Ramsey to shore up and see out victory.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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