Scottish Championship
Morton0Rangers2

Greenock Morton 0-2 Rangers

Barrie McKay
Barrie McKay gave Rangers a 2-0 lead in the second half

Rangers were reduced to 10 men against Morton but still restored their five-point lead at the Championship summit.

Kenny Miller took advantage of a deflection in the box to poke the visitors in front.

Morton gave a good account of themselves but could not score an equaliser, and Barrie McKay played a neat one-two before doubling the lead.

Andy Halliday was shown a second yellow card for celebrating his side's second goal in front of the Morton fans.

The decision riled Rangers' coaching staff, but the team saw out the win against a spirited Morton side.

From the outset, Morton's play was a blend of energy, vigour and intent.

The plot was to pressurise Rangers players, particularly when they took the ball over the halfway line. Both full-backs were also harried, and James Tavernier had an awkward night trying to cope with the lively and spirited Bobby Barr.

The visitors were never wholly comfortable at Cappielow. Even in possession, their passing lacked the tempo or precision that has underpinned so much of their progress this season.

Morton were well served in midfield by Joe Mckee, up front by Denny Johnstone and Declan McManus and at left-back by the sure-footed Mark Russell, who kept Martyn Waghorn unusually quiet. Yet Rangers still carved out some half chances.

Miller would have been frustrated by the way he skewed a header wide from a central position and from close range. Lee Wallace also sent a shot wide from a good position. It was in keeping with the nature of Rangers' performance that their goal came from a moment of luck.

When Halliday struck a shot from 20 yards out, the ball bounced off the chest of defender Thomas O'Ware and fell to Miller, who prodded it past Derek Gaston, the Morton goalkeeper.

The home side did not lose heart, though, and a driving run and cross by McManus caused some alarm for Rob Kiernan, although he managed to slide across to block out the danger. The home fans appealed for hand ball, but it was his leg that made contact.

Andy Halliday (left)
Andy Halliday (left) was sent off for gesturing to the Morton fans after Rangers' second goal

Morton raised their tempo after the break, which caused anxiety in the Rangers defence as the game opened up. McManus was alert, shooting wide after Rangers conceded possession then seeing his effort saved by Wes Foderingham after Barr had skinned Tavernier on the left and crossed into the box.

Rangers responded by changing their side, with substitutions seeing McKay move into midfield. He grew in stature, striking the bar then embarking on a driving run, playing a one-two with Miller and expertly clipping a shot beyond Gaston's reach and into the net.

The visitors' celebrations were cut short, though, with Halliday shown a second yellow card for gesturing triumphantly to the Morton fans. That decision infuriated Rangers manager Mark Warburton, who was eventually spoken to by the referee Barry Cook.

The dismissal was a set-back, but the home side saw the game out.

Line-ups

Morton

  • 1Gaston
  • 15Pepper
  • 2Kilday
  • 4O'Ware
  • 17Russell
  • 16BarrSubstituted forScullionat 84'minutes
  • 7McKee
  • 8Forbes
  • 11McCluskeySubstituted forTidserat 78'minutesBooked at 83mins
  • 9JohnstoneSubstituted forSamuelat 82'minutes
  • 21McManus

Substitutes

  • 3Lamie
  • 6Miller
  • 12Scullion
  • 14Tidser
  • 18Samuel
  • 30McGowan

Rangers

  • 25Foderingham
  • 2TavernierBooked at 45mins
  • 4Kiernan
  • 27WilsonBooked at 67mins
  • 5Wallace
  • 8ZelalemSubstituted forForresterat 58'minutes
  • 16HallidayBooked at 72mins
  • 7LawSubstituted forShielsat 59'minutes
  • 33Waghorn
  • 9MillerSubstituted forBallat 75'minutes
  • 19McKay

Substitutes

  • 1Bell
  • 6Ball
  • 14Clark
  • 15Forrester
  • 22Shiels
  • 42Hardie
  • 45Thompson
Referee:
Barry Cook
Attendance:
5,778

Match Stats

Home TeamMortonAway TeamRangers
Possession
Home39%
Away61%
Shots
Home11
Away20
Shots on Target
Home4
Away7
Corners
Home7
Away6
Fouls
Home6
Away10

Live Text

Match ends, Morton 0, Rangers 2.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Morton 0, Rangers 2.

Attempt missed. Declan McManus (Morton) header from the centre of the box is high and wide to the left.

Corner, Morton. Conceded by James Tavernier.

Attempt missed. Declan McManus (Morton) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right.

Attempt saved. Barrie McKay (Rangers) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom left corner.

Attempt blocked. Ross Forbes (Morton) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Attempt missed. Martyn Waghorn (Rangers) left footed shot from the right side of the box is just a bit too high.

Corner, Morton. Conceded by Wes Foderingham.

Attempt saved. Declan McManus (Morton) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Attempt saved. Harry Forrester (Rangers) right footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

Attempt saved. Ross Forbes (Morton) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

Substitution

Substitution, Morton. Jon Scullion replaces Bobby Barr.

Attempt missed. Declan McManus (Morton) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left.

Booking

Michael Tidser (Morton) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Substitution

Substitution, Morton. Alex Samuel replaces Denny Johnstone.

Foul by Declan McManus (Morton).

Dean Shiels (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Corner, Morton. Conceded by Dominic Ball.

Attempt saved. Harry Forrester (Rangers) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

Substitution

Substitution, Morton. Michael Tidser replaces Stefan McCluskey.

Substitution

Substitution, Rangers. Dominic Ball replaces Kenny Miller.

Foul by Thomas O'Ware (Morton).

Barrie McKay (Rangers) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Kenny Miller (Rangers).

Joe McKee (Morton) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Dismissal

Second yellow card to Andy Halliday (Rangers) for a bad foul.

Goal!

Goal! Morton 0, Rangers 2. Barrie McKay (Rangers) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the top left corner. Assisted by Kenny Miller.

Attempt missed. Thomas O'Ware (Morton) right footed shot from the centre of the box is high and wide to the right.

Foul by Lee Wallace (Rangers).

Stefan McCluskey (Morton) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Barrie McKay (Rangers) hits the bar with a right footed shot from outside the box.

Booking

Andy Halliday (Rangers) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Declan McManus (Morton) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Andy Halliday (Rangers).

Booking

Danny Wilson (Rangers) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Declan McManus (Morton) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Danny Wilson (Rangers).

Attempt missed. Kenny Miller (Rangers) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the right.

Denny Johnstone (Morton) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Rangers21172263164753
2Hibernian21153337172048
3Falkirk22137238172146
4Raith Rovers208482225-328
5Queen of Sth208482127-628
6Morton206681923-424
7Dumbarton2154121839-2119
8St Mirren2046101931-1218
9Livingston2244142435-1116
10Alloa213216940-3111
View full Scottish Championship table

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