Rangers win big in Ramsey debut

Aaron Ramsey makes his much-anticipated Rangers debut in a heartbeat preventing Celtic from extending their one-point lead in the Scottish Premiership.

GB About: Rangers Publish: 02/06/2022 Edit: 02/06/2022 Author: Gardener

RamseyAaron Ramsey made his much-anticipated Rangers debut as they beat Hearts to prevent Celtic from extending their one-point lead in the Scottish Premiership. The influential Alfredo Morelos netted in each half and put Glen Kamara on goal after Hearts spurned great chances before Scott Arfield scored a well-taken fourth and Fashion Sakala completed the loss. Ramsey, who was loaned to Juventus and signed in January, was given the last 14 minutes by Giovanni van Bronckhorst and, 4-0 up, could not have dreamed of an easier debut against the side who are now 16 points adrift of third place. It was a game where Morelos underscored his importance, a day that showed the striker's influence, dynamism and class time and time again. Rangers worked in the three games they played when he was an unused member of the Colombia squad. Many of the 50,000 spectators at Ibrox on Sunday will have wondered why his country took him halfway across the world to not only drop him from their lineups but from matchday squads altogether. Van Bronckhorst will certainly be delighted with his return - not least after Wednesday's soft and hurtful defeat at Celtic Park. Morelos laced a busy performance with bright flashes of subtlety. His goals came recklessly, the first coming from a superb Calvin Bassey pass and a Ryan Kent delivery; the second, an insistent left-foot curl from the edge of the box. If it was coincidence that Morelos' attempted through ball bounced straight back to his feet, then the forward did enough to deserve his lucky shot and was deadly enough to grab it. His connecting play was top-notch throughout, repeatedly pressuring Hearts' central defense - lacking Craig Halkett and Rangers-bound John Souttar. The Hearts keeper practically did this again in the final act of the game. Morelos' second, however, had been the defining moment. Because if Rangers had come flying out of the traps in the first half, they started the second while still asleep in them. Trailing 1-0, Hearts could have equalized when Nathaniel Atkinson failed to convert a glorious ball from Stephen Kingsley, and really should have equalized when Bassey's terribly weak header missed Allan McGregor and Cammy Devlin went wide. But with a swing of his left shoe, Morelos calmed the fear simmering in the home ranks. With a right turn, he sent Kamara screaming into the penalty area, where the Finn fooled a thrashing defender and pushed home. Rangers put icing on their cake late, Arfield scored in the second try from a Super Kent pick-out and Sakala converted neatly with six minutes to go. Beating Hearts – even a 5-0 win over them – won't heal the wounds inflicted by Celtic, but Rangers' pulse is strong again after Wednesday's flat-lining. The Rangers mentality has been questioned by outsiders and their own this season. Back in November, when Hibernian knocked them out of the League Cup, Connor Goldson said he felt his team had "lost a little bit of hunger". They had to prove themselves on Sunday after what Celtic did to them. Hearts will be broken at how badly this ended for them. Although Rangers dominated the game, there were chances but the Edinburgh side couldn't take them. Their moments to grab the game by the neck came early in that second half. Rangers manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst on Sky Sports: "We're very happy, it's a big win for us." The key is to keep playing Game In and Game Out, it's key to the way we do want to play we have to maintain that energy and there's a good chance of winning [the league] slightly capitulated. When you come to a good team you have to take your chances and we had two or three.

Keywords: Rangers, second, Morelos, Celtic, three, Wednesday, Sunday, Giovanni van Bronckhorst, first, two, third, fourth, 16, Game In and Game Out, Sky Sports, Edinburgh, Connor Goldson, the League Cup, Hibernian, November, Beating Hearts, six minutes, Sakala, Super Kent, Arfield, Finn

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