12162017

Pena scores twice as Rangers win at St Johnstone

Carlos Pena scores

Carlos Pena struck high into the net to give Rangers the lead

Carlos Pena scored twice as Rangers beat 10-man St Johnstone in the Scottish Premiership.

Pena fired in James Tavernier’s cross to put the visitors ahead shortly after goalkeeper Wes Foderingham denied Saints’ Graham Cummins.

The hosts had Steven Anderson sent off for two bookings before Pena headed home another Tavernier delivery.

And Graham Dorrans rounded off the win for Pedro Caixinha’s third-placed side, who move three points clear of Saints.

Defeat meant Tommy Wright’s team lost back-to-back league matches for the first time this season.

Rangers were again without Kenny Miller, who had returned to training with the first team after missing the win over Hamilton Academical following a fall-out with Caixinha.

Miller did not travel to Perth, with Caixinha putting his absence down to injury.

Saints, who have not beaten Rangers at McDiarmid Park in the league for more than seven years, unsettled the visiting defence at early corners.

But Rangers responded well, with Pena going through on goal only for Murray Davidson to save Saints.

The Ibrox side might have done better with a free-kick after Davidson had fouled Alfredo Morelos. But, instead of shooting, the worked the ball to Declan John and any danger was quickly snuffed out.

Steven Anderson is sent off<!–

Anderson (far right) was sent off twice in six minutes

At the other end, Saints had a great opportunity when Davidson’s pass sent Cummins through at great pace but his effort was well blocked by Foderingham.

They would rue that three minutes later, when a brilliant ball in from right-back Tavernier allowed Pena to finish with aplomb at the back post.

Daniel Candeias was then flagged offside – perhaps incorrectly – when through one-on-one with Alan Mannus, though his shot was saved in any case.

St Johnstone were on the back foot but found some late first-half energy, with Cummins trying his luck with a hooked effort that went out.

Rangers celebrate<!–

Pena (far left) peeled away in the St Johnstone box to nod Rangers’ second

Steven MacLean and Cummins caused Rangers further problems after the break, but Saints were unable to make the most of their set-plays.

Five corners came in quick succession and Rangers, with Bruno Alves back to captain the side, handled the pressure, defending well.

If not taking advantage was bad enough, St Johnstone then lost a man. Skipper Anderson was shown a second yellow card for a tug on Morelos’ jersey and Rangers were soon further ahead.

Tavernier then sent over another lovely ball, inch perfect for Pena to make it 2-0 with a bullet header.

Rangers were running riot. Dorrans thundered a shot off the bar, but then a minute later wrapped up the three points from Jason Holt’s low cross.

The scoreline suggested a comfortable win for Rangers without much battle from St Johnstone, but that was not quite the case. Saints offered plenty, but met a Rangers side who looked more organised.

Live Text

Match ends, St. Johnstone 0, Rangers 3.

Second Half ends, St. Johnstone 0, Rangers 3.

Substitution, Rangers. Aaron Nemane replaces Josh Windass.

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by James Tavernier.

Substitution, Rangers. Eduardo Herrera replaces Alfredo Morelos.

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Wes Foderingham.

Goal! St. Johnstone 0, Rangers 3. Graham Dorrans (Rangers) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Jason Holt.

Substitution, Rangers. Ross McCrorie replaces Carlos Peña.

Attempt blocked. Alfredo Morelos (Rangers) header from the centre of the box is blocked.

Graham Dorrans (Rangers) hits the bar with a right footed shot from outside the box.

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Daniel Candeias.

Substitution, St. Johnstone. Denny Johnstone replaces Steven MacLean.

Paul Paton (St. Johnstone) is shown the yellow card.

Graham Dorrans (Rangers) is shown the yellow card.

Foul by Stefan Scougall (St. Johnstone).

Graham Dorrans (Rangers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Goal! St. Johnstone 0, Rangers 2. Carlos Peña (Rangers) header from the centre of the box to the top left corner. Assisted by James Tavernier.

Attempt saved. Craig Thomson (St. Johnstone) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Substitution, St. Johnstone. Craig Thomson replaces Graham Cummins.

Declan John (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Steven MacLean (St. Johnstone).

Attempt saved. Carlos Peña (Rangers) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Second yellow card to Steven Anderson (St. Johnstone) for a bad foul.

Foul by Steven Anderson (St. Johnstone).

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

Paul Paton (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Carlos Peña (Rangers).

Substitution, St. Johnstone. Paul Paton replaces Chris Millar.

Foul by Aaron Comrie (St. Johnstone).

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

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Fábio Cardoso.

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Fábio Cardoso.

Steven Anderson (St. Johnstone) is shown the yellow card.

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Bruno Alves.

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Josh Windass.

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Daniel Candeias.

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Declan John.

Chris Millar (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Carlos Peña (Rangers).

Declan John (Rangers) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

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