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Rangers 2-0 Dundee United: Ibrox side delay Celtic title win

James Tavernier celebrates after scoring a penalty
James Tavernier netted a penalty against United for the second time this season

Rangers delayed Celtic’s Scottish Premiership title win with a deserved home victory over Dundee United.

Only a win and three points for the Europa League finalists was enough to postpone their rivals’ celebrations.

Fashion Sakala and Scott Arfield were denied by Benjamin Siegrist before the United goalkeeper fouled Sakala in the second half.

James Tavernier scored the resulting penalty and Sakala set up substitute Amad Diallo for the clinching goal.

Rangers reduce Celtic’s lead to six points with two games to go, with Ange Postecoglou’s side 21 goals better off.

United remain a point in front of fifth-placed Motherwell and well placed for a European spot.

  • Reaction & as it happened

A Rangers team showing seven changes following Thursday’s Europa League semi-final win against Leipzig took time to fully stretch their visitors, Sakala pouncing on a Charlie Mulgrew mistake to give Siegrist his first contribution.

Arfield exchanged passes with Steven Davis before drawing another fine save and Sakala spun well in the box only to shoot wide.

The Zambian tested Siegrist from wide on the left early in the second period but the goalkeeper was culpable when Sakala latched on to Aaron Ramsey’s chip.

The forward was pulled down, prompting a booking for the Swiss, and Tavernier converted confidently to the right.

United had to show more attacking intent and Ryan Edwards, buoyed by his recent strike against Hearts, flashed an effort over Jon McLaughlin’s goal and substitute Nicky Clark was wide with his effort.

Scott Wright’s half-time replacement Diallo, after being clattered by the booked Ross Graham, made an impact on Rangers’ right and sent a couple of efforts wide before converting Sakala’s pass for goal number two.

Man of the match – Fashion Sakala

Fashion Sakala is fouled by Benjamin Siegrist
The forward was Rangers’ most industrious attacker and played a part in both goals

What did we learn?

In Kemar Roofe’s continued absence, Sakala was the only recognised striker in Rangers’ starting line-up but started wide left. Scott Arfield was deployed in an advanced central role and linked well with Davis and Ramsey.

The second half featured a Rangers debut for Adam Devine, sent on with fellow youngsters Alex Lowry and Charlie McCann and joining teenage starter Leon King on the pitch as manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst rested players ahead of the Europa League and Scottish Cup finals.

United’s strategy was primarily one of containment, a task they performed admirably until the penalty incident. In attack, they struggled to create openings and still have work to do to secure a top-five finish and a Europa Conference League qualifying place.

What’s next?

Rangers play their final home match of the season on Wednesday against Ross County in the Scottish Premiership (19:45 BST) while Dundee United host Celtic (19:30), with the visitors needing only a draw to win the title.

Pick your Rangers XI

Choose your starting XI. It’s up to you how to approach it – you could go for the team you WANT the manager to pick or the one you THINK he will.

Pick your Dundee United XI

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helpHow to play

Rate players out of 10 throughout or after the game. The rater will close 30 minutes after the final whistle.

Rating range key1 = Give it up10 = Pure perfection
  • Rangers
  • Dundee United

Rangers

Starting XI

  1. Squad number33Player nameMcLaughlin
    Average rating

    6.37

  2. Squad number2Player nameTavernier
    Average rating

    5.79

  3. Squad number6Player nameGoldson
    Average rating

    6.14

  4. Squad number43Player nameKing
    Average rating

    6.41

  5. Squad number31Player nameBarisic
    Average rating

    6.26

  6. Squad number19Player nameSands
    Average rating

    6.11

  7. Squad number10Player nameDavis
    Average rating

    6.50

  8. Squad number23Player nameWright
    Average rating

    6.09

  9. Squad number16Player nameRamsey
    Average rating

    6.27

  10. Squad number30Player nameSakala
    Average rating

    6.62

  11. Squad number37Player nameArfield
    Average rating

    6.33

Substitutes

  1. Squad number9Player nameDiallo
    Average rating

    7.43

  2. Squad number18Player nameKamara
    Average rating

    6.92

  3. Squad number42Player nameMcCann
    Average rating

    6.92

  4. Squad number51Player nameLowry
    Average rating

    7.02

  5. Squad number64Player nameDevine
    Average rating

    6.49

Dundee United

Starting XI

  1. Squad number1Player nameSiegrist
    Average rating

    7.74

  2. Squad number20Player nameNeilson
    Average rating

    6.80

  3. Squad number12Player nameEdwards
    Average rating

    6.47

  4. Squad number29Player nameGraham
    Average rating

    6.07

  5. Squad number2Player nameSmith
    Average rating

    6.65

  6. Squad number19Player nameLevitt
    Average rating

    6.64

  7. Squad number4Player nameMulgrew
    Average rating

    6.37

  8. Squad number17Player nameMeekison
    Average rating

    6.59

  9. Squad number3Player nameSpörle
    Average rating

    6.72

  10. Squad number58Player nameAnim Cudjoe
    Average rating

    6.81

  11. Squad number32Player nameWatt
    Average rating

    6.20

Substitutes

  1. Squad number6Player nameMcDonald
    Average rating

    5.27

  2. Squad number7Player nameNiskanen
    Average rating

    5.21

  3. Squad number10Player nameClark
    Average rating

    5.36

  4. Squad number26Player nameMochrie
    Average rating

    5.11

  5. Squad number33Player nameMcMann
    Average rating

    5.21

  • Line-ups
  • Match Stats
  • Live Text

Line-ups

Rangers

Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 33McLaughlin
  • 2TavernierSubstituted forDevineat 66′minutes
  • 6Goldson
  • 43King
  • 31BarisicSubstituted forMcCannat 66′minutes
  • 19Sands
  • 10Davis
  • 23WrightSubstituted forDialloat 45′minutes
  • 16RamseySubstituted forKamaraat 79′minutes
  • 30SakalaBooked at 25mins
  • 37ArfieldSubstituted forLowryat 65′minutes

Substitutes

  • 3Bassey
  • 4Lundstram
  • 9Diallo
  • 14Kent
  • 18Kamara
  • 28McCrorie
  • 42McCann
  • 51Lowry
  • 64Devine

Dundee Utd

Formation 3-5-2

  • 1SiegristBooked at 55mins
  • 20NeilsonSubstituted forMcDonaldat 45′minutes
  • 12Edwards
  • 29GrahamBooked at 59minsSubstituted forMcMannat 73′minutes
  • 2Smith
  • 19Levitt
  • 4Mulgrew
  • 17MeekisonSubstituted forMochrieat 79′minutes
  • 3Spörle
  • 58Anim CudjoeSubstituted forClarkat 56′minutes
  • 32WattSubstituted forNiskanenat 72′minutes

Substitutes

  • 6McDonald
  • 7Niskanen
  • 10Clark
  • 13Eriksson
  • 22Freeman
  • 26Mochrie
  • 33McMann
  • 46Thomson
  • 50O’Donnell
Referee:
Steven McLean

Match Stats

Home TeamRangersAway TeamDundee Utd
Possession
Home73%
Away27%
Shots
Home20
Away3
Shots on Target
Home5
Away0
Corners
Home8
Away1
Fouls
Home7
Away8

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Rangers 2, Dundee United 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Rangers 2, Dundee United 0.

  3. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Charlie McCann (Rangers) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Steven Davis.

  4. Post update

    Foul by James Sands (Rangers).

  5. Post update

    Nicky Clark (Dundee United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  6. Post update

    Steven Davis (Rangers) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  7. Post update

    Foul by Scott McMann (Dundee United).

  8. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Steven Davis (Rangers) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

  9. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Connor Goldson (Rangers) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Amad Diallo with a cross.

  10. Post update

    Corner, Rangers. Conceded by Ilmari Niskanen.

  11. Post update

    Steven Davis (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  12. Post update

    Foul by Scott McMann (Dundee United).

  13. Substitution

    Substitution, Dundee United. Chris Mochrie replaces Archie Meekison.

  14. Substitution

    Substitution, Rangers. Glen Kamara replaces Aaron Ramsey.

  15. Goal!

    Goal! Rangers 2, Dundee United 0. Amad Diallo (Rangers) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Fashion Sakala.

  16. Substitution

    Substitution, Dundee United. Scott McMann replaces Ross Graham.

  17. Substitution

    Substitution, Dundee United. Ilmari Niskanen replaces Tony Watt.

  18. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Fashion Sakala (Rangers) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Alexander Lowry.

  19. Post update

    Offside, Rangers. Alexander Lowry tries a through ball, but Amad Diallo is caught offside.

  20. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Alexander Lowry (Rangers) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Amad Diallo.

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