Rangers 2-1 Motherwell: 'Lay-off James Tavernier' pleads Steven Gerrard

Rangers' James Tavernier (right) shows his frustration after missing a first-half penalty against Motherwell
Rangers' James Tavernier (right) shows his frustration after missing a first-half penalty against Motherwell

Steven Gerrard has made a "plea" to Rangers fans to back captain James Tavernier after he missed his third spot-kick of the season in the win over Motherwell.

The Rangers manager admitted he will "consider" taking Tavernier off penalty duties.

But he was unhappy with sections of the home support due to a "few moans and groans and it doesn't help".

"I would like the crowd to help him a bit more," said Gerrard.

"Sometimes when it's tough and you are not at your best, you need your crowd to be with you rather than against you.

"So a plea for the crowd to stay with him because he will play through it and he can change games, like he did for us today. It's a fantastic delivery for Fil's [Helander] goal. But James needs his people now, it's important."

Rangers fell behind to Devante Cole's opener before Tavernier missed from the spot.

Jermain Defoe eventually levelled before the break, with Filip Helander's header sealing victory.

"Winning ugly is probably the best way to describe it," Gerrard said. "There was a big improvement in the second half but - over the course of the game - we weren't at our best. We have got away with one.

"We have found a way to win but I must pay credit and respect to Motherwell, I thought they were outstanding: A lot of pace up front, direct running, players who do the basics very well, second balls, a lot of hard running.

"Outside of Celtic, they are the best team that have come here."

'Very dubious decision for first goal'

Motherwell manager Stephen Robinson felt Liam Donnelly had his heels clipped by Defoe just before the Rangers' equaliser.

"We deserved at least a point," said Robinson.

"The players implemented exactly what we tried to do and showed a lot of quality. We have no right to come here and show that kind of quality and we did.

"The frustration for me is we got beat by a set-piece. I have to give credit, it was a brilliant delivery but we got beat by a set-play and a very, very dubious decision for the first goal.

"If they come together and he falls over and it's accidental, it doesn't matter. It's a foul. And it leads to the first goal."

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