Scottish Premiership
Rangers0St Johnstone0

Rangers 0-0 St Johnstone: Steven Gerrard's side held by stuffy visitors

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Highlights: Rangers 0-0 St Johnstone

Rangers missed a chance to narrow the gap with Scottish Premiership leaders Celtic to three points after being held to a draw at home by St Johnstone.

Without suspended top scorer Alfredo Morelos, Rangers rarely tested former Ibrox goalkeeper Cammy Bell.

They had Wes Foderingham, deputising for the suspended Allan McGregor, to thank for good saves from Chris Kane and Joe Shaughnessy.

And they had to make do with a second successive goalless draw.

Steven Gerrard's side have now gone six games without defeat, but the manager will have been looking for an improvement on last weekend's Scottish Cup stalemate away to Kilmarnock as Celtic now have a chance to stretch their lead to eight points away to the Ayrshire side on Sunday.

Counterpart Tommy Wright will be pleased to see his side recover from a 5-0 thumping by Celtic to end a run of five defeats - four of them away from home - as they move to within five points of fifth-placed Hearts.

Rangers had won three in a row against Saints, scoring 11 goals in the process, since the Perth side won 3-1 at Ibrox in December 2017.

But a tighter affair was always likely this time with both sides coming into the game without their main strikers and having drawn a blank in their previous outings.

Jermain Defoe overcame injury concerns to start as Morelos served the second of his three-match ban, while Kyle Lafferty was fit enough for the bench, but Rangers have proved to be a less potent force whenever they have had to make do without their top scorer.

Only a header from Connor Goldson tested Bell during the first half and even then it was straight at the man deputising for the injured Zander Clark.

Saints, without injured forwards Tony Watt and Michael O'Halloran, were subduing their hosts and threatening on the break, with lone striker Kane breaking clear only to be thwarted by goalkeeper Foderingham.

Daniel Candeias was prominent as Rangers attempted to force the issue after half-time and, when his dangerous low cross was pushed clear by Bell, a timely Jason Kerr interception denied Defoe before the winger himself lashed wastefully over.

Foderingham denied Saints the lead after a Liam Craig free-kick found the head of centre-half Joe Shaughnessy.

St Johnstone came even closer five minutes later as David Wotherspoon picked out Alston as he darted beyond Worrall.

The midfielder looked up to see Foderingham off his line but was denied a spectacular winner as his lob hit the face of the bar before bouncing into the keeper's grateful grasp.

Defoe had scored three times and been provider for one other goal in his four outings since joining Rangers on loan from Bournemouth, but it was the introduction of substitute Lafferty that added more potency in the latter stages.

However, a couple of snap shots from the Northern Ireland striker flashed wide as Rangers, for whom former Dundee midfielder Glen Kamara made his debut, had to settle for a point.

Line-ups

Rangers

  • 13Foderingham
  • 2Tavernier
  • 6Goldson
  • 3Worrall
  • 31Barisic
  • 17McCrorieSubstituted forCoulibalyat 76'minutes
  • 21CandeiasSubstituted forLaffertyat 68'minutes
  • 10DavisSubstituted forMiddletonat 59'minutes
  • 18Kamara
  • 14Kent
  • 9Defoe

Substitutes

  • 11Lafferty
  • 16Halliday
  • 19Katic
  • 23Coulibaly
  • 25Polster
  • 32Firth
  • 40Middleton

St Johnstone

  • 12Bell
  • 19Foster
  • 15Kerr
  • 5Shaughnessy
  • 3Tanser
  • 27GossSubstituted forAlstonat 71'minutes
  • 10WotherspoonSubstituted forCallachanat 88'minutes
  • 8Davidson
  • 26Craig
  • 33KennedySubstituted forSwansonat 80'minutes
  • 9Kane

Substitutes

  • 4Alston
  • 11Swanson
  • 22Hendry
  • 23Gordon
  • 28Callachan
  • 30Hurst
  • 31Keown
Referee:
Steven McLean
Attendance:
49,549

Match Stats

Home TeamRangersAway TeamSt Johnstone
Possession
Home61%
Away39%
Shots
Home18
Away6
Shots on Target
Home1
Away2
Corners
Home5
Away5
Fouls
Home14
Away10

Live Text

Match ends, Rangers 0, St. Johnstone 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Rangers 0, St. Johnstone 0.

Attempt missed. Kyle Lafferty (Rangers) header from the right side of the box is just a bit too high following a set piece situation.

Ryan Kent (Rangers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Murray Davidson (St. Johnstone).

Foul by Glenn Middleton (Rangers).

Danny Swanson (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, St. Johnstone. Ross Callachan replaces David Wotherspoon.

Attempt missed. Borna Barisic (Rangers) left footed shot from the centre of the box is too high.

Glen Kamara (Rangers) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Blair Alston (St. Johnstone).

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

Substitution

Substitution, St. Johnstone. Danny Swanson replaces Matthew Kennedy.

Blair Alston (St. Johnstone) hits the bar with a right footed shot from outside the box.

Attempt missed. Kyle Lafferty (Rangers) right footed shot from the centre of the box is high and wide to the left.

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

Substitution

Substitution, Rangers. Lassana Coulibaly replaces Ross McCrorie.

Attempt saved. Joe Shaughnessy (St. Johnstone) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

Foul by Ryan Kent (Rangers).

Matthew Kennedy (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Glenn Middleton (Rangers).

Liam Craig (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Substitution

Substitution, St. Johnstone. Blair Alston replaces Sean Goss.

Kyle Lafferty (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Joe Shaughnessy (St. Johnstone).

Substitution

Substitution, Rangers. Kyle Lafferty replaces Daniel Candeias.

Corner, Rangers. Conceded by Sean Goss.

Glen Kamara (Rangers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Murray Davidson (St. Johnstone).

Attempt missed. Daniel Candeias (Rangers) left footed shot from the centre of the box is too high.

Foul by James Tavernier (Rangers).

Matthew Kennedy (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Glen Kamara (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Murray Davidson (St. Johnstone).

Substitution

Substitution, Rangers. Glenn Middleton replaces Steven Davis.

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by James Tavernier.

Attempt missed. Joe Worrall (Rangers) left footed shot from the right side of the box is high and wide to the right following a set piece situation.

Connor Goldson (Rangers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Christopher Kane (St. Johnstone).

Connor Goldson (Rangers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Celtic25183459144557
2Rangers26157455203552
3Aberdeen26145743311247
4Kilmarnock25137537251246
5Hearts2513483129243
6St Johnstone26115102732-538
7Hibernian269893628835
8Motherwell25103122734-733
9Livingston2687112728-131
10Dundee2646162252-3018
11Hamilton2653181753-3618
12St Mirren2634191954-3513
View full Scottish Premiership table

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