STEVEN GERRARD suffered his first Old Firm defeat on home turf as Celtic claimed a comprehensive 2-0 triumph this afernoon.
The Ibrox boss had masterminded his team to a 1-0 victory over Brendan Rodgers’ side in December and repeated the feat – this time 2-0 – when Neil Lennon took the Hoops to Govan in May.
Rangers were rated favourites by many critics, including the bookies, but they hardly laid a glove on their opponents with comeback keeper Fraser Forster rarely troubled.
At the other end, Allan McGregor made several fine stops, but had no answer when Odsonne Edouard strolled through to open the scoring in the 32nd minute.
And he was beaten again in stoppage time after making a brave block from Jonny Hayes only for the substitute to follow up and tuck away the killer goal from the rebound.
A clearly dismayed Gerrard, speaking to Rangers TV, said: “I’m not pleased with the performance at all.
“Across the board we weren’t good enough as a team or as individuals. It was only really Jon Flanagan who could be proud of his performance.
“But we take it on the chin and the criticism as a group. And I’m part of that. We’ll have to take everything that comes our way and move on quickly.”
HELPLESS…keeper Allan McGregor has no chance as Odsonne Edouard opens the scoring.
Asked what he had said to his players in the dressing room, Gerrard replied: “I told them we’ve done really well to get into this position to get neck and neck before a ball is kicked.
“But you’ve got to go out and perform in an Old Firm. You’ve got to win one-v-ones and you have to put in a performance that wins you the game.
“If you don’t win it, then you must not lose it.
“I’m bitterly disappointed to gift them the early goal. The idea was to put a stranglehold on the game, but to go a goal down goes against what we were trying to do.
“I don’t think we’ve been outplayed or outclassed, but Celtic were very effective in what they did. We couldn’t handle their direct play at times.
“The reality is if you want to beat a good team you need more than one player at it.”
Gerrard’s agony was compounded in the fading moments in the six minutes of added-on tme when substitute Jordan Jones was red-carded for a crazy lunge at Celtic’s new Bhoy Moritz Bauer that left the Austrian right-back writhing in pain on the touchline.
The winger now faces an automatic suspension.
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