Forget Morelos: £32k-p/w Rangers colossus who won 100% duels was Beale’s unsung hero – opinion

Glasgow Rangers manager Michael Beale continued his unbeaten run in charge of the club by beating Hearts 3-0 in the Premiership on Wednesday night.

The Gers opened the scoring in the eighth minute of the match as they worked a quick free-kick out to Ryan Kent on the flank and the Englishman’s delicate ball to the back post allowed Alfredo Morelos to nod into the back of the net from close range.

Fashion Sakala thought he had put Rangers 2-0 up just before the half-hour mark but the linesman’s flag put an end to his joy and VAR confirmed that the forward was offside. The Zambia international then missed a huge opportunity to get on the scoresheet as the attacker got onto the end of Malik Tillman’s cutback and saw his effort saved by the goalkeeper.

Tillman made up for Sakala’s miss shortly after that as Connor Goldson’s header back across the box was met sweetly on the volley by the on-loan Bayern Munich gem to make it 2-0.

Morelos secured his second and Rangers’ third in the second half as the Colombia international ghosted into the box to finish from Sakala’s cross.

It was an enjoyable performance from the Light Blues as they used their intensity and quality to starve Hearts of possession whilst consistently bombarding the opposition box to create chance after chance.

Whilst the attacking play on display from the side was superb, an unsung hero on the night for Beale’s side was central defender Connor Goldson as the gem put in a fantastic performance at the heart of the defence.

Supporters may want to laud the exciting play from the likes of Sakala, Tillman, and Morelos, and rightly so, but the English battler provided the platform from which the forwards built.

Out of possession, Goldson won 100% of his individual battles on the pitch – winning both of his ground battles and his one in the air – with the ex-Brighton man proving dominant by not affording the Hearts attackers a sniff all night.

The £37k-per-week colossus, who also made two clearances and one tackle, was also composed on the ball as he completed 82% of his attempted passes and, of course, assisted the second goal of the night by heading the ball across to Tillman.

Goldson was, therefore, key to what Rangers did at both ends of the pitch by dominating the opposition in his own third and venturing forward to contribute in Hearts’ box.

His excellent defending allowed the attacking players for the Gers to push forward and do what they do best in the final third, which is why he was an unsung hero for Beale on the night amongst a number of impressive displays.


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