Rangers 2-0 Airdrieonians: Match Report
Rangers 2-0 Airdrieonians: Match Report - view commentary, squad, and statistics of the game as it happened.
Rangers claim another victory
Rangers marched on to the Scottish League Two title with their 16th victory on the bounce against Airdrieonians at Ibrox as they won 2-0.
After firing another first-half blank, the Light Blues prevailed courtesy of Jon Daly's 16th goal of the season and Lee McCulloch's strike from the penalty spot.
The Ibrox club extended their gaping lead at the top of Scotland's third tier to 16 points and maintained their 100 per cent record in the division.
Before kick-off, the Rangers supporters took part in their annual remembrance of the Armistice weekend, while on the second minute, the fans showed their support to former defender Fernando Ricksen who was diagnosed with motor neurone disease a fortnight ago.
A physically-demanding clash with Dunfermline in midweek left Ally McCoist without Richard Foster and Andy Little with Sebastian Faure and Nicky Clark coming in for the second match with Airdrie in eight days.
McCoist's side knocked on the door as early as eight minutes when Lee Wallace's deep cross was met by the in-form Daly to no avail.
Clark, replacing the injured Little, was presented with a superb chance after 16 minutes, controlling a wasteful kick-out from Andrew Duncan, but lashing past the far post.
The closest Gary Bollan's men came to troubling Cammy Bell was from an over-ambitious bicycle kick from Jamie Bain, but Rangers continued to dominate towards the end of the half.
After half an hour, Wallace unleashed a 30-yard drive which trundled through to Clark who saw his close-range finish saved by Duncan at his bottom left-hand corner.
Nicky Law's incisive and tireless energy in midfield was Rangers' biggest source of creativity in the first half and the Englishman would have been presented with three open goals, if the Light Blues had been sharp enough.
The former Motherwell midfielder roamed clear on 35 minutes, cutting back cleverly to Wallace who blazed over the bar under intense pressure from the Lanarkshire side.
Not even the "Geez a goal" chants from the home supporters could inspire Rangers to a first-half lead, as Bollan's side held the Gers to a blank for the second consecutive match.
But almost like clockwork, Rangers came out from the interval with some fire in their belly and within 30 seconds, Honduras international Arnold Peralta crossed for Daly who headed into the far corner of the net.
His strike-partner Clark was cursing his luck after missing three gilt-edge chances, denied twice by Duncan and then by the woodwork after 54 minutes.
It seemed only a matter of time before the Ibrox side added some shine to a safe three points and they were awarded a spot-kick on 63 minutes after David Templeton was fouled by right-back Gregor Buchanan.
McCulloch, who is forming a strong centre-back partnership with Bilel Mohsni, has been resilient from 12 yards this season and he rammed home his second penalty in two games.
The defensive duo have now popped up with 17 of Rangers' 61 goals this season, in all competitions, as the Rangers captain moved into double figures.
McCoist was able to stretch his squad depth with Lewis MacLeod returning to first-team action from the bench, as Rangers cruised to another convincing win.
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