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Friday, 16 August, 2002, 15:00 GMT 16:00 UK
Rangers cruise to victory
Peter Lovenkrands celebrates
Peter Lovenkrands scored twice for Rangers
Hibernian 2-4 Rangers

Rangers piled on more misery for Hibs with a comfortable win at Easter Road.

Ronald de Boer put Rangers in front early on and, although Derek Townsley pulled Hibs level, the visitors went ahead again just before the interval with a Barry Ferguson penalty.

Rangers continued to dominate in the second half and increased their lead thanks to two Peter Lovenkrands goals.

Hibs had Paco Luna sent off for two bookable offences but they managed a late consolation goal through Garry O'Connor.

Hibs got off to the worst possible start when Arteta, who had already threatened once, freed Lovenkrands on the left and his square ball was tucked into the net by De Boer in six minutes.

Rangers should have been two up minutes later. Arteta picked out Arveladze who headed past Nick Colgan only for the assistant referee to raise his flag although the striker was onside.

Ian Murray loses out to Shota Arveladze
Ian Murray loses out to Shota Arveladze
Hibs' threat up front was almost non-existent and it took a superbly-timed challenge by Paul Fenwick on Lovenkrands to deny the Dane a clear shot on goal.

Derek Townsley became the first Hibs player to worry Stefan Klos with a powerful free kick that whistled narrowly past the German's right-hand post on the half-hour mark.

Five minutes later, though, Townsley grabbed the equaliser. A corner from the right came off Luna and fell kindly for Townsley who swivelled before placing the ball beyond Klos.

But just before the interval, Rangers went back in front. Doumbe tugged Lovenkrands in the area and referee Hugh Dallas awarded the penalty.

Ferguson coolly sent Colgan the wrong way from the spot.

Lovenkrands missed a glaring opportunity to add to Rangers' lead five minutes after the restart when he shot over from six yards out after getting on the end of Arteta's cross.

Rangers put together a superb move involving Arteta and Lovenkrands that culminated in De Boer chipping the ball over the outrushing Colgan, but the ball drifted wide.

Lovenkrands did make it three in 64 minutes, getting in front of Doumbe to emphatically knock Ricksen's cross past Colgan.

Derek Townsley scores Hibs' equaliser
Derek Townsley scores Hibs' equaliser
A minute later Hibs thought they were back in the game again when Luna's headed effort appeared to have crossed the line after good work from Garry O'Connor.

But instead, Dallas ruled that Luna had intentionally handled and showed him his second yellow card, reducing Hibs to ten men.

Rangers pushed forward and Arveladze almost got on the end of Numan's inviting cross.

Stefan Klos had to be alert to halt O'Connor in his tracks as Hibs tried desperately to pull a goal back.

But in 86 minutes, Lovenkrands killed any hopes they had with his second goal, a composed left-foot finish past Colgan.

Hibs did reduce the deficit two minutes later when O'Connor volleyed past Klos after a corner from the right.


Hibernian: Colgan, Doumbe, Smith, Fenwick, Daquin (O'Connor 59), Brebner, Jack, Arpinon (Townsley 21), Murray, McManus (Paatelainen 74), Luna.

Subs Not Used: Caig, Wiss.

Sent Off: Luna (66).

Booked: Smith, Luna, Brebner, Colgan, Jack.

Rangers: Klos, Muscat, Moore, Amoruso, Numan, Ricksen, Ferguson, Arteta, de Boer (Flo 78), Arveladze, Lovenkrands.

Subs Not Used: McGregor, Latapy, Ross, Konterman.

Booked: Lovenkrands, Amoruso.

Att: 11,633

Ref: H Dallas

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
BBC Sport's Grant McPherson
"Rangers were always in control"
Hibs manager Bobby Williamson
"We probably didn't deserve the two goals"
Rangers manager Alex McLeish
"Getting the three points was the most important thing"
The SPL season gets under way

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