Scottish Premiership
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Livingston 0-3 Rangers: Steven Gerrard's side move second in Premiership

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Highlights: Livingston 0-3 Rangers

Steven Gerrard's Rangers reignited their title challenge as they moved second in the Scottish Premiership after beating Livingston.

In a dominant 90 minutes at the Tony Macaroni Arena, the Ibrox side, who lost at Kilmarnock on Wednesday, could have won by more as the hosts toiled.

Ryan Jack gave Rangers the lead after a howler from Livi goalkeeper Liam Kelly, who allowed the ball to slip under him.

Ryan Kent hammered in a second before Alfredo Morelos added a third.

That defeat at Rugby Park saw Rangers start the day in fourth, but they moved back above Steve Clarke's side and Aberdeen, and to within three points of leaders Celtic, but having played a game more.

Livingston - who at one point were riding high at the top of the Premiership - fall to eighth in the table after suffering just their third home defeat of the season.

Gerrard makes the changes

After dropping points to Kilmarnock, another set-back would have left Rangers' title challenge looking precarious.

And they arrived in Livingston having won just one of their last five top-flight visits to West Lothian, including a defeat on their last trip.

Jermain Defoe started on the bench as Gerrard made four changes from that Killie loss, but early on he watched as his side passed up the type of chances the Englishman has made a career out of finishing.

Ross McCrorie steered a header wide at the near post, then Morelos failed to burst the net from point-blank range.

But Livi were being smothered under Rangers' high pressing. Ricki Lamie gifted possession to Daniel Candeias, who proceeded to play a brilliant through ball to Morelos whose low shot bounced off the post.

The pressure had been building, but the goal was a nightmare for Livi goalkeeper Kelly. Jack's low shot was straight at him, and Kelly allowed it to slip under his body and into the net.

But after taking the lead, Rangers appeared to ease off and allowed the hosts more joy in the opposition half.

However, they lacked a final ball and shots over the bar either side of half-time from Steven Lawless and Dolly Menga left Allan McGregor relatively untroubled in goal.

Kent passed up a golden chance before making amends a minute later. He made a late run from the left to meet James Tavernier's cross but sent it wide, but he could not miss when Kelly rebounded Morelos' flick into his path and he thumped in his fourth goal of the season.

It was not Livi goalkeeper Kelly's day against his former club and Morelos was determined to put one past him. He failed to hold a cross - gifting the ball to the Colombian who shot wide - then tipped a header over.

But it was third time unlucky for Kelly when Morelos dashed on to Scott Arfield's pass, rounded him, and scored from a tight angle.

Livi had their best moments of the game in time added on. Scott Pittman forced McGregor into a save before Scott Tiffoney was also unfortunate not to earn his side a penalty after Joe Worrall nudged him in the back inside the box.

Liam Kelly
Liam Kelly's fumble gifted Rangers a first-half lead

'Rangers could have scored six' - Analysis

Former Livingston and Rangers defender Gary Bollan told BBC Sportsound: "Rangers deserve huge credit for the way they went about their business. It was top class.

"Suffering a midweek defeat and disappointment, they've gone and rectified that today.

"With the chances they missed Rangers could have scored six. It just shows you the quality they've got throughout their squad."

'We won't point the finger at Liam' - Reaction

Livingston manager Gary Holt said: "Never ever point fingers at anyone, we all make mistakes.

"I'll look at myself today and I'll analyse did I pick the right formation, did I pick the right team? And Liam has made a mistake but when a keeper makes a mistake it ends up in the net.

"But the young man has been phenomenal for us and what he does and produces day in day out, game by game - one little mistake doesn't cost you the game, there was plenty time to come back from that it's just a guess a very good side like Rangers make it difficult.

"But that's life. You get the chin up and move on."

Line-ups

Livingston

  • 1Kelly
  • 31Gallagher
  • 26Halkett
  • 4Lithgow
  • 15Lawless
  • 8Pittman
  • 6Byrne
  • 7JacobsBooked at 86mins
  • 3LamieBooked at 27minsSubstituted forTiffoneyat 68'minutes
  • 19ErskineSubstituted forSibbaldat 76'minutes
  • 45MengaSubstituted forWyldeat 59'minutes

Substitutes

  • 5Brown
  • 10Sibbald
  • 11Cadden
  • 21Stewart
  • 22Tiffoney
  • 33Lawson
  • 39Wylde

Rangers

  • 1McGregor
  • 2Tavernier
  • 3Worrall
  • 19Katic
  • 31BarisicSubstituted forHallidayat 82'minutes
  • 17McCrorieBooked at 36mins
  • 8Jack
  • 37Arfield
  • 21Candeias
  • 20MorelosSubstituted forDefoeat 76'minutes
  • 14KentSubstituted forDavisat 76'minutes

Substitutes

  • 9Defoe
  • 10Davis
  • 13Foderingham
  • 16Halliday
  • 23Coulibaly
  • 36McAuley
  • 40Middleton
Referee:
Kevin Clancy
Attendance:
9,028

Match Stats

Home TeamLivingstonAway TeamRangers
Possession
Home49%
Away51%
Shots
Home5
Away14
Shots on Target
Home1
Away5
Corners
Home1
Away9
Fouls
Home9
Away8

Live Text

Match ends, Livingston 0, Rangers 3.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Livingston 0, Rangers 3.

Corner, Rangers. Conceded by Craig Halkett.

Attempt blocked. Jermain Defoe (Rangers) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

Attempt saved. Scott Pittman (Livingston) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

Attempt blocked. Scott Pittman (Livingston) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Corner, Rangers. Conceded by Craig Halkett.

Foul by Daniel Candeias (Rangers).

Scott Pittman (Livingston) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Ross McCrorie (Rangers) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Gregg Wylde (Livingston).

Booking

Keaghan Jacobs (Livingston) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Ross McCrorie (Rangers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Keaghan Jacobs (Livingston).

Nikola Katic (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Scott Tiffoney (Livingston).

Substitution

Substitution, Rangers. Andy Halliday replaces Borna Barisic.

Attempt missed. Jermain Defoe (Rangers) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the right.

Attempt missed. Gregg Wylde (Livingston) left footed shot from outside the box is too high.

Corner, Rangers. Conceded by Keaghan Jacobs.

Attempt blocked. Daniel Candeias (Rangers) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Substitution

Substitution, Rangers. Steven Davis replaces Ryan Kent.

Substitution

Substitution, Rangers. Jermain Defoe replaces Alfredo Morelos.

Substitution

Substitution, Livingston. Craig Sibbald replaces Chris Erskine.

Goal!

Goal! Livingston 0, Rangers 3. Alfredo Morelos (Rangers) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the right to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Scott Arfield.

Corner, Rangers. Conceded by Liam Kelly.

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

Foul by Steven Lawless (Livingston).

James Tavernier (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Shaun Byrne (Livingston).

Alfredo Morelos (Rangers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Attempt missed. Alfredo Morelos (Rangers) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left.

Substitution

Substitution, Livingston. Scott Tiffoney replaces Ricki Lamie.

Foul by Borna Barisic (Rangers).

Shaun Byrne (Livingston) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt blocked. Alfredo Morelos (Rangers) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.

Foul by Ross McCrorie (Rangers).

Shaun Byrne (Livingston) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Alfredo Morelos (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Declan Gallagher (Livingston).

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Celtic22153453143948
2Rangers23136447182945
3Kilmarnock23136434211345
4Aberdeen23134637241343
5Hearts2312382928139
6St Johnstone2211472626037
7Hibernian238873324932
8Livingston238692623330
9Motherwell2383122233-1127
10Hamilton2342171449-3514
11Dundee2334161748-3113
12St Mirren2333171646-3012
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