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Ross County record first ever victory over Rangers as Staggies claim crucial three points in battle to avoid Premiership relegation play-off

By Andrew Henderson

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For the first time ever, Ross County have beaten Rangers – picking up a vital three points in their bid to avoid a relegation play-off in the process.

Picture - Ken Macpherson. Aberdeen(2) v Ross County(1). 30/03/24. Ross County's Simon Murray celebrates his equalising goal.
Picture - Ken Macpherson. Aberdeen(2) v Ross County(1). 30/03/24. Ross County's Simon Murray celebrates his equalising goal.

The Staggies had started the game well, with George Harmon missing a chance from close range in the opening minutes.

They were made to pay at a Rangers corner kick, which was flicked on at the near post into the path of Jack Baldwin. The County captain was stretching to try and intercept the ball, and ended up diverting ip past Ross Laidlaw, who had been restored to the starting 11.

Laidlaw was called into action multiple times before the interval, with Cyriel Dessers the main culprit who missed a numbers of opportunities.

County continued to show some threat, though, with Harmon blazing over the bar from space around the penalty spot shortly before half time.

The Staggies turned the game on its head in a five-minute spell after the restart though.

First it was Simon Murray who was picked out by Josh Sims, and although Jack Butland saved his first effort Murray as on hand to follow it up and score his 10th league goal of the season.

Murray had a hand in County’s second too, again forcing a save out of Butland that this time was followed in by Harmon, who gave County the lead.

Rangers thought they had an equaliser when they again bundled the ball in at a corner kick, only for the referee to give the home side a free kick for handball.

County would make their visitors pay immediately afterwards, going 3-1 up through Josh Sims.

It was an expansive passing move that Sims actually helped start in the middle of the park, eventually working its way out to King who forced the ball inside for Sims to finish at close range.

With a two-goal advantage, it was just a question of whether County could hold on for a historic result, and title-chasing Rangers would put them under considerable pressure.

Most notably, Todd Cantwell hit the bar from range, before Brandon Khela was pulled up for handball inside his own box by VAR to give Rangers a prime opportunity to cut the deficit to a single goal.

James Tavernier stepped up, and expertly beat Laidlaw – who guessed the right way – to pull the scoreline back to 3-2.

Try as Rangers might, though, they could not find another way through as Ross County on for a first ever win over Rangers, reducing the gap to St Johnstone in 10th place in the Premiership table to a single point going into the split.

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