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Scottish Cup: Arbroath 0-4 Rangers

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Instead, those associated with Rangers were greeted with one of the nicest days weather wise in a long time in Arbroath and saw their team stroll to a 4-0 victory.

With Steven Davis missing due to suspension, American national team captain Carlos Bocanegra stepped into the breach to captain Rangers for the first time.

After suffering a shock defeat in the League Cup earlier in the season to Falkirk, Ally McCoist took no chances and sent out a strong side to face the side sitting in second place in Division Two.

There was a return from injury for Nikica Jelavic who partnered David Healy upfront, whilst John Fleck made his first start since last March to join Maurice Edu in midfield.

The opening ten minutes was full of end-to-end action. David Healy twice missed great chances that he should have buried. The first chance that fell to Healy saw him played in by Jelavic but he volleyed over the bar from seven yards out. The second chance that fell to Healy started when Sone Aluko raced to the by line and cut the ball back, but Healy could only manage to scuff his shot.

Down the other end Bocanegra slipped, which let in Arbroath top scorer Steven Doris, but his shot flashed wide of Allan McGregor’s goal.

Then after a free-kick was only half cleared by Jelavic, midfielder Josh Falkingham unleashed a superb volley which McGregor superbly tipped over the crossbar.

It was too much relief for the travelling support that Rangers took the lead on 17 minutes. After a good move involving Jelavic and Edu, the ball was poked through to Healy who slid past goalkeeper Darren Hill.

From then the Scottish champions were dominant and they soon added a second when Jelavic’s cross was diverted into his own net by Craig Wedderburn.

However, Arbroath still tried to take the game to Rangers and were denied a penalty when Gavin Swankie was tugged by Sone Aluko, who then forced Hill into a good save with a low drive. Hill was also alert to a well struck half-volley by Edu as Rangers looked to go further ahead before half-time.

Arbroath player-manager Paul Sheerin showed his attacking intent at half-time, taking off midfielder Liam Caddis for striker Lee Sibanda.

But it was Rangers who started the second half stronger, with Fleck immediately missing a headed chance after Jelavic had broken clear.

The Croatian then got himself on the score sheet on 58 minutes slotting home from close range, after some excellent trickery from Sone Aluko to kill off any chance of the home side causing an upset.

On 77 minutes Salim Kerkar, somewhat of a cult figure amongst Rangers fans, finally grabbed his first goal for the club volleying home a cross from Healy to complete the victory.

An upset may have been avoided in comprehensive fashion here, but with Dundee United looming in the Fifth round for Ally McCoist, tougher assignments await if the Scottish Cup is to head back to Ibrox.

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About Author

Ewan is a third year Journalism student at Glasgow Caledonian University. A Rangers season ticker holder, he is interested in all things related to Scottish Football, but also writes about the English Championship.

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