Rangers 1-3 St Johnstone: Saints showed their mettle, says Wright

Blair Alston scores
Blair Alston scored St Johnstone's equaliser in their 3-1 win over Rangers

Manager Tommy Wright said St Johnstone showed "how good we are" in the 3-1 win over Rangers at Ibrox.

Saints secured an away league win over Rangers for the first time in 46 years, despite falling behind to an Alfredo Morelos goal.

Blair Alston, Denny Johnstone and Graham Cummins all scored their first goals of the season for Saints.

"Overall, great performance and three goals from three different players," Wright said. "Great finishes."

St Johnstone bounced back from a 3-0 midweek home defeat by Aberdeen.

"After the disappointment of Wednesday, it was important we came here and put on a performance," Wright told BBC Radio Scotland's Sportsound.

Tommy Wright
Wright has now enjoyed two wins at Ibrox as St Johnstone manager, his last coming in the League Cup in 2015

"I thought we'd started the game well. We responded brilliantly [to going behind] and it's always important when you come here that you get back as quickly as possible.

"We encouraged our players to go out and just be braver on the ball and make sure we can pass the ball, show how good we are and we did that in the second half.

"Denny proved a real handful. Because we haven't got a 20-goal a season man, we have to get goals from all over the pitch and that was a big help today.

"I wasn't aware that we hadn't won here in the league in 46 years so that's another little milestone for them.

"We like teams to come on to us and we can counter attack and that's a perfect set-up for away games. At home we have struggled and I do believe at home our players have got to be braver on the ball. We've been sloppy a lot of the times in possession and caused our own problems.

"We haven't defended as well as we have and done the basics as well as we should've but I'm happy with the away form and it's keeping us in that top six at the minute."

Michael O'Halloran
Michael O'Halloran sat out Saturday's match at Ibrox

On-loan Rangers winger Michael O'Halloran was unavailable against his parent club and Wright hopes the winger can be retained, with O'Halloran due to return to Ibrox next month.

"I've a meeting with my chairman and hopefully I'll find out if I'm shopping in the used car sales or the brand new cars in January - more likely I'll be in the used cars again," Wright joked.

"We would like to hold on to Michael but Rangers may have other plans for him and that'll unfold over the next couple of weeks.

"I do believe that we have to try and strengthen, we have to give the squad a wee bit of a boost because the league's a lot tighter this year."

'Reality check' for Rangers

Rangers interim manager Graeme Murty - in charge for ninth successive game - apologised to the home fans after the third defeat on his watch this season and fifth overall in this season's Premiership, four of which have been at Ibrox.

"We didn't actually get to where we needed to and there's no excuse," he told RangersTV.

Graeme Murty
Murty has overseen six Rangers wins this season after winning three of six in interim charge last term

"I think they know that that's not the level that they are required to play at and it's possibly a reality check for themselves. It's a reality check for me in terms of where we are and where I am on my journey.

"We had to move the ball faster. We were too slack all over the pitch.

"If you don't get to the right level then teams in this division will find you out. They're very well organised, they're very well structured and they play to a plan and we didn't manage to deal with that. It's just not good enough from us.

"I was targeting getting to that really healthy state - pushing on with a real good feeling. The next three games now are a test of how well we react and how well we prepare.

"Today we didn't manage to sustain any kind of level that we've hit in the previous four games, which is annoying me at the moment but I won't get too emotional about it. I have to make sure that I give them constructive stuff to move forward."

Top Stories