Scottish Championship
Falkirk3Rangers2

Falkirk 3-2 Rangers

Bob McHugh struck in stoppage time as Falkirk recovered from the loss of two early goals to stun Rangers.

Blair Alston found the top corner on 72 minutes and Myles Hippolyte rounded the goalkeeper to level before McHugh turned in a neat, near-post finish.

Rangers looked on course for a comfortable victory when Kenny Miller and Barrie McKay applied close-range finishes inside nine minutes.

But the Championship leaders let their lead at the top slip to 11 points.

It was just a third league defeat of the season for Rangers, who will guarantee the title with four wins from their remaining seven games.

But Falkirk boast the same number of losses and a remarkable comeback also takes them six points clear of Hibernian, although they have played three more games than the team in third place.

Rangers had gone 15 matches unbeaten since losing another thriller to Falkirk in December and Mark Warburton's men could have been out of sight after a dominant first-half display.

Having had a strike incorrectly disallowed for offside, James Tavernier drilled in a cross for Miller to tap in the opener.

The huge travelling support were still celebrating when Rangers swaggered forward and fired in a second, with Lee Wallace setting up McKay.

Rangers have lost both of their league visits to Falkirk this season
Rangers have lost both of their league visits to Falkirk this season

Miller and McKay threatened again, while Wallace and Halliday had shots well saved by Danny Rogers before the interval.

Rangers started the second half with the same drive, with Miller and Halliday going close to extending their lead.

But the home side's desire was never in question and they began to cause problems for the Rangers defence as Luke Leahy, Will Vaulks and substitute Hippolyte had shots repelled by Wes Foderingham.

The Rangers keeper was also tested by a fierce Alston shot in the first half but had no chance when the Bairns midfielder expertly lashed the ball on the half volley into the top corner of the net.

Soon after, the increasingly lively Hippolyte found space on the left, skipped past Foderingham and blasted the ball beyond two covering defenders.

The home fans behind the goal rose and roared as one and in near disbelief as Hippolyte back-flipped away in delight.

And just as they were preparing to celebrate an unlikely point, McHugh handed them the victory and added to the delirium.

Kevin O'Hara did well to create room for a cross on the left and when he drove the ball in low fellow substitute McHugh nicked in to steer the ball home from inside the six-yard box.

A bewildered Rangers had scarcely any time to respond and Falkirk held on to secure a vital three points in their push for promotion.

Line-ups

Falkirk

  • 1Rogers
  • 4Muirhead
  • 5McCracken
  • 44Watson
  • 3Leahy
  • 8Alston
  • 6Vaulks
  • 10SibbaldSubstituted forO'Haraat 74'minutes
  • 7Taiwo
  • 9BairdBooked at 76minsSubstituted forMcHughat 80'minutes
  • 18MillerSubstituted forHippolyteat 50'minutesBooked at 64mins

Substitutes

  • 17Smith
  • 19McHugh
  • 22Hippolyte
  • 26McCann
  • 28Mehmet
  • 30O'Hara
  • 33Gallacher

Rangers

  • 25Foderingham
  • 2Tavernier
  • 4Kiernan
  • 27Wilson
  • 5Wallace
  • 16Halliday
  • 6Ball
  • 23Holt
  • 17KingSubstituted forO'Halloranat 68'minutes
  • 9MillerSubstituted forClarkat 69'minutes
  • 19McKaySubstituted forForresterat 60'minutes

Substitutes

  • 1Bell
  • 7Law
  • 14Clark
  • 15Forrester
  • 22Shiels
  • 29O'Halloran
Referee:
Kevin Clancy
Attendance:
7,804

Match Stats

Home TeamFalkirkAway TeamRangers
Possession
Home37%
Away63%
Shots
Home14
Away17
Shots on Target
Home9
Away10
Corners
Home4
Away13
Fouls
Home8
Away5

Live Text

Match ends, Falkirk 3, Rangers 2.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Falkirk 3, Rangers 2.

David McCracken (Falkirk) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Danny Wilson (Rangers).

Corner, Rangers. Conceded by Myles Hippolyte.

Goal!

Goal! Falkirk 3, Rangers 2. Robert McHugh (Falkirk) right footed shot from very close range to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Kevin O'Hara.

Corner, Falkirk. Conceded by James Tavernier.

Attempt blocked. Kevin O'Hara (Falkirk) right footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked.

Corner, Rangers. Conceded by David McCracken.

Corner, Rangers. Conceded by Aaron Muirhead.

Corner, Rangers. Conceded by Myles Hippolyte.

Corner, Rangers. Conceded by Aaron Muirhead.

Attempt blocked. Nicky Clark (Rangers) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

Attempt saved. Rob Kiernan (Rangers) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

Corner, Rangers. Conceded by Luke Leahy.

Attempt saved. Will Vaulks (Falkirk) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Myles Hippolyte (Falkirk) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Andy Halliday (Rangers).

Substitution

Substitution, Falkirk. Robert McHugh replaces John Baird.

Goal!

Goal! Falkirk 2, Rangers 2. Myles Hippolyte (Falkirk) left footed shot from the centre of the box to the centre of the goal.

Booking

John Baird (Falkirk) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by John Baird (Falkirk).

Dominic Ball (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Falkirk. Kevin O'Hara replaces Craig Sibbald.

Goal!

Goal! Falkirk 1, Rangers 2. Blair Alston (Falkirk) right footed shot from outside the box to the top left corner.

Attempt saved. Michael O'Halloran (Rangers) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Substitution

Substitution, Rangers. Nicky Clark replaces Kenny Miller.

Substitution

Substitution, Rangers. Michael O'Halloran replaces Billy King.

Corner, Falkirk. Conceded by James Tavernier.

Corner, Falkirk. Conceded by Wes Foderingham.

Attempt saved. Myles Hippolyte (Falkirk) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner.

Myles Hippolyte (Falkirk) has gone down, but that's a dive.

Booking

Myles Hippolyte (Falkirk) is shown the yellow card.

Attempt saved. James Tavernier (Rangers) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Attempt saved. Will Vaulks (Falkirk) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top right corner.

Substitution

Substitution, Rangers. Harry Forrester replaces Barrie McKay.

Attempt saved. Luke Leahy (Falkirk) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

Attempt missed. James Tavernier (Rangers) left footed shot from outside the box is too high.

Jason Holt (Rangers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Craig Sibbald (Falkirk).

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLGDPts
1Rangers2923335472
2Falkirk30171032661
3Hibernian2717461955
4Raith Rovers2812610042
5Morton299812-335
6Queen of Sth2810414-1234
7St Mirren288713-1031
8Dumbarton288515-2229
9Livingston286616-1024
10Alloa293521-4214
View full Scottish Championship table

Top Stories

Get Inspired Activity Finder

Run by the BBC and partners

Find ways to get active near you: