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Page last updated at 16:57 GMT, Saturday, 6 March 2010

Rangers   3 - 1   St Mirren

Rangers players Danny Wilson, Lee McCulloch and DaMarcus Beasley
McCulloch (centre) turned the match in Rangers' favour with two goals

By Andy Campbell

Lee McCulloch scored twice as Scottish Premier League leaders Rangers came from behind to beat St Mirren.

Graham Carey stunned the Ibrox crowd with a superb free-kick to give St Mirren the lead on the half-hour mark.

McCulloch quickly levelled for Rangers with a deflected shot and the midfielder volleyed home his second just after the half-time interval.

Rangers hit the woodwork three times in an open game and sealed victory through Nacho Novo's 78th-minute strike.

The result came hours after widespread media speculation about an imminent takeover of Rangers by a London-based consortium and moved the Ibrox side 13 points clear of nearest challengers Celtic.

A high-tempo start to the game saw Michael Higdon fire over the Rangers goal from 20 yards and the striker was then fouled on the edge of the area by David Weir, who escaped punishment before Carey's attempt cannoned off the defensive wall.

At the other end, Lee Mair made a crucial block to divert Kris Boyd's shot out for a corner.

St Mirren went back on the attack and Steven Thomson latched onto a through-ball and stabbed a shot towards goal, forcing Allan McGregor to make a last-ditch save.

Steven Davis' swerving free-kick struck the St Mirren crossbar and, after the ball was returned into the penalty area, Sasa Papac fired against the outside of Paul Gallacher's right-hand post.

On-loan Celtic full-back Carey broke the deadlock with a fiercely-struck free-kick that flew into the corner as McGregor stood rooted to the spot.

Rangers responded within two minutes as Kevin Thomson's free-kick into the area eventually fell to McCulloch, who found the net with the aid of a deflection off Chris Innes.

St Mirren defenders John Potter and Graham Carey
Carey (right) had given St Mirren the lead with an impressive strike

The Ibrox side looked to get in front before the break and Danny Wilson's volley from McCulloch's knock-down was superbly saved by Gallacher.

However, the hosts did not have long to wait to take the lead as a well-worked move in the opening minute of the second half ended with McCulloch finding the net again.

Papac's deep cross was headed down by Boyd to Kenny Miller, who teed up McCulloch for a scoring strike.

Rangers continued to pressurise and Miller's shot across goal was almost converted at the back post by DaMarcus Beasley.

Innes limped off to be replaced by Stephen O'Donnell before Beasley headed against the post from a Thomson free-kick.

Higdon's replacement Craig Dargo tested McGregor from 25 yards as Saints looked for a leveller.

Novo had earlier come on for Beasley and made his mark on the scoresheet when he ghosted in behind John Potter to flick home Davis' free-kick.

St Mirren had a good chance to reduce the deficit when Carey's cross found O'Donnell at the back post but the midfielder skewed his shot wide.

Dargo had another shot saved by McGregor and Andy Dorman was inches away from connecting with a teasing O'Donnell delivery before Steven Whittaker's powerful drive cleared the St Mirren crossbar in injury time.

Live text and stats

 

Saturday, 6 March 2010

Scottish Premier

Home Team Score Away Team Time
Rangers 3-1 St Mirren FT
(HT 1-1)
  • McCulloch 32
  • McCulloch 46
  • Novo 78
  • Carey 30

Rangers

  • 01 McGregor
  • 03 Weir
  • 05 Papac
  • 16 Whittaker
  • 66 Wilson
  • 06 McCulloch yellow card
  • 07 Davis
  • 08 Thomson (Edu 64)
  • 20 Beasley (Novo 64)
  • 09 Boyd
  • 18 Miller (Naismith 79)

Substitutes

  • 25 Alexander,
  • 21 Broadfoot,
  • 02 Edu,
  • 10 Novo,
  • 14 Naismith,
  • 29 Fleck,
  • 48 Little

St Mirren

  • 01 Gallacher
  • 05 Mair
  • 06 Potter
  • 19 Barron
  • 21 Innes (O'Donnell 50)
  • 03 Carey
  • 08 Dorman
  • 10 Thomson yellow card
  • 14 Brady
  • 09 Mehmet
  • 11 Higdon (Dargo 70)

Substitutes

  • 20 Howard,
  • 25 Faulds,
  • 12 O'Donnell,
  • 26 McLennan,
  • 41 Johnston,
  • 18 Dargo
Ref: RichmondAtt: 47,474
RANGERS
ST MIRREN

Possession

  • Rangers 61%
  • St Mirren 39%

Attempts on target

  • Rangers 16
  • St Mirren 7

Attempts off target

  • Rangers 9
  • St Mirren 5

Corners

  • Rangers 6
  • St Mirren 3

Fouls

  • Rangers 10
  • St Mirren 10
  • Final Result
  • Full Time
  • 90:00+3:09 The referee ends the match.
  • 90:00+2:10 Steven Whittaker has shot on goal from just outside the area which goes wide of the right-hand upright.
  • 90:00+1:21 A cross is delivered by Andy Dorman, clearance made by David Weir.
  • 90:00+0:59 Nacho Novo concedes a free kick for a foul on Graham Carey. Garry Brady restarts play with the free kick.
  • 90:00+0:39 Steven Thomson sends in a cross, David Weir manages to make a clearance.
  • 90:00+0:23 The ball is sent over by Graham Carey, Billy Mehmet takes a shot. Blocked by Danny Wilson.
  • 90:00+0:11 Stephen O'Donnell delivers the ball, Sasa Papac makes a clearance.
  • 89:57 The ball is swung over by John Potter, clearance made by Sasa Papac.
  • 89:17 Graham Carey takes a outswinging corner from the left by-line played to the near post.
  • 88:00 Craig Dargo takes a shot. Save by Allan McGregor.
  • 85:06 Nacho Novo crosses the ball, clearance by Lee Mair.
  • 84:36 Sasa Papac gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on David Barron. Paul Gallacher restarts play with the free kick.
  • 84:27 The ball is delivered by Sasa Papac, David Barron manages to make a clearance.
  • 83:46 Shot from just outside the area by Maurice Edu goes over the bar.
  • 83:38 The ball is sent over by Kris Boyd.
  • 82:55 The ball is crossed by Steven Davis, clearance made by Lee Mair.
  • 82:32 The ball is sent over by Billy Mehmet, save by Allan McGregor.
  • 82:04 The ball is sent over by Graham Carey, clearance made by David Weir.
  • 81:02 Graham Carey delivers the ball, Stephen O'Donnell takes a shot from close in clearing the crossbar.
  • 79:49 Stephen O'Donnell produces a cross, clearance by David Weir. Graham Carey takes a inswinging corner from the right by-line to the near post, clearance by Lee McCulloch.
  • 79:01 Centre by Steven Davis, Header by Kris Boyd from deep inside the penalty area misses to the left of the goal.
  • 77:39 Substitution Steven Naismith joins the action as a substitute, replacing Kenny Miller.
  • 77:39 The assist for the goal came from Steven Davis.
  • 77:39 GOAL - Nacho NovoRangers 3 - 1 St Mirren Goal scored by Nacho Novo from close range to the bottom right corner of the goal. Rangers 3-1 St Mirren.
  • 76:49 Stephen O'Donnell concedes a free kick for a foul on Nacho Novo. Steven Davis delivers the ball,
  • 75:15 Kris Boyd concedes a free kick for a foul on Lee Mair. Paul Gallacher takes the indirect free kick.
  • 74:44 Stephen O'Donnell produces a cross.
  • 74:30 Kris Boyd is caught offside. Indirect free kick taken by David Barron.
  • 72:52 Kenny Miller takes a shot. Save by Paul Gallacher.
  • 72:39 Garry Brady crosses the ball, save made by Allan McGregor.
  • 72:05 Andy Dorman takes the indirect free kick.
  • 72:05 Booking The referee cautions Lee McCulloch for unsporting behaviour.
  • 71:55 Free kick awarded for a foul by Lee McCulloch on Andy Dorman.
  • 71:08 Sasa Papac produces a cross, clearance by Graham Carey.
  • 69:59 Substitution Craig Dargo joins the action as a substitute, replacing Michael Higdon.
  • 67:19 Steven Whittaker takes a shot. Graham Carey gets a block in.
  • 66:56 Lee McCulloch takes a shot. Blocked by Andy Dorman.
  • 66:02 The ball is sent over by Graham Carey, David Weir makes a clearance.
  • 64:42 The ball is crossed by Andy Dorman, David Weir makes a clearance.
  • 62:41 Paul Gallacher takes the free kick.
  • 62:41 Substitution Nacho Novo replaces DaMarcus Beasley.
  • 62:41 Substitution Maurice Edu is brought on as a substitute for Kevin Thomson.
  • 62:41 DaMarcus Beasley takes the outswinging corner, free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Billy Mehmet by Danny Wilson.
  • 62:03 A cross is delivered by Sasa Papac, clearance made by David Barron.
  • 61:06 Steven Davis delivers the ball, David Barron makes a clearance.
  • 60:56 A cross is delivered by Steven Whittaker, Lee Mair makes a clearance.
  • 60:30 Kenny Miller takes a shot. John Potter gets a block in.
  • 60:04 Centre by Stephen O'Donnell.
  • 59:15 Corner taken right-footed by Steven Davis to the near post, David Weir takes a shot. Comfortable save by Paul Gallacher.
  • 58:28 Stephen O'Donnell crosses the ball, Allan McGregor makes a save.
  • 57:22 Centre by Stephen O'Donnell.
  • 56:24 Steven Davis crosses the ball, clearance made by John Potter.
  • 53:27 David Weir concedes a free kick for a foul on Michael Higdon. Strike on goal comes in from Graham Carey from the free kick.
  • 53:01 Steven Davis takes a shot from just outside the penalty area clears the crossbar.
  • 52:29 Handball decision goes against Graham Carey. Kevin Thomson sends in a cross, DaMarcus Beasley has a headed effort at goal from close in that strikes the post.
  • 51:59 Stephen O'Donnell sends in a cross, Allan McGregor makes a save.
  • 50:44 John Potter gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Kenny Miller. Shot on goal comes in from Steven Davis from the free kick, Paul Gallacher makes a save.
  • 49:50 Substitution (St Mirren) makes a substitution, with Stephen O'Donnell coming on for Chris Innes.
  • 48:43 The ball is crossed by Chris Innes.
  • 48:14 Steven Thomson takes a shot. Blocked by Sasa Papac.
  • 47:24 Graham Carey delivers the ball, Danny Wilson manages to make a clearance.
  • 46:33 Shot by Kenny Miller from deep inside the penalty area misses wide to the left of the target.
  • 45:42 Assist by Kenny Miller.
  • 45:42 GOAL - Lee McCullochRangers 2 - 1 St Mirren Lee McCulloch gets on the score sheet with a goal from the edge of the area to the bottom left corner of the goal. Rangers 2-1 St Mirren.
  • 45:35 Sasa Papac sends in a cross.
  • 45:01 The match restarts for the second half.
  • Half Time
  • 45:00+1:24 The half-time whistle blows.
  • 45:00+0:40 The ball is swung over by Steven Whittaker.
  • 44:24 Kenny Miller is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Paul Gallacher takes the free kick.
  • 44:13 Steven Davis delivers the ball.
  • 43:51 Steven Davis sends in a cross, Danny Wilson takes a shot. Save by Paul Gallacher.
  • 43:44 Kevin Thomson delivers the ball, clearance by Graham Carey.
  • 43:20 Steven Davis takes the outswinging corner, John Potter manages to make a clearance.
  • 43:09 A cross is delivered by DaMarcus Beasley, clearance made by Lee Mair.
  • 42:36 Corner taken by Steven Davis from the left by-line.
  • 41:56 Outswinging corner taken by Steven Davis from the right by-line, David Weir takes a shot. Lee Mair manages to make a clearance.
  • 41:16 Free kick crossed by Steven Davis, save by Paul Gallacher.
  • 41:16 Booking Steven Thomson booked.
  • 41:11 Steven Thomson gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Kenny Miller.
  • 40:22 Graham Carey delivers the ball.
  • 40:02 Foul by Danny Wilson on Michael Higdon, free kick awarded. Garry Brady takes the free kick.
  • 38:33 The ball is delivered by Andy Dorman, save made by Allan McGregor.
  • 37:52 DaMarcus Beasley sends in a cross.
  • 37:16 Billy Mehmet challenges Lee McCulloch unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Kevin Thomson.
  • 36:41 The ball is delivered by Sasa Papac, Headed effort from deep inside the area by Lee McCulloch misses to the left of the goal.
  • 36:01 Unfair challenge on Kris Boyd by John Potter results in a free kick. Steven Davis takes the free kick.
  • 35:23 Graham Carey takes a shot. Blocked by David Weir.
  • 34:47 Andy Dorman takes a outswinging corner from the right by-line to the near post, David Weir makes a clearance.
  • 34:25 Steven Davis takes a shot. Save by Paul Gallacher.
  • 33:09 Unfair challenge on DaMarcus Beasley by David Barron results in a free kick. Steven Davis crosses the ball in from the free kick, clearance made by Andy Dorman.
  • 32:00 Kris Boyd provided the assist for the goal.
  • 32:00 GOAL - Lee McCullochRangers 1 - 1 St Mirren A goal is scored by Lee McCulloch from inside the area to the top left corner of the goal. Rangers 1-1 St Mirren.
  • 31:31 Lee Mair gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Steven Whittaker. Kevin Thomson delivers the ball from the free kick left-footed from right wing.
  • 29:57 GOAL - Graham CareyRangers 0 - 1 St Mirren Graham Carey scores a goal direct from the free kick from long range to the bottom left corner of the goal. Rangers 0-1 St Mirren.
  • 29:11 David Weir challenges Michael Higdon unfairly and gives away a free kick.
  • 26:41 Foul by Graham Carey on Steven Davis, free kick awarded. Free kick crossed left-footed by DaMarcus Beasley, comfortable save by Paul Gallacher.
  • 25:58 The official flags Billy Mehmet offside. Allan McGregor restarts play with the free kick.
  • 25:52 Graham Carey delivers the ball, Sasa Papac makes a clearance.
  • 25:14 Kris Boyd challenges Graham Carey unfairly and gives away a free kick. Graham Carey crosses the ball in from the free kick, clearance made by Sasa Papac.
  • 24:14 The referee penalises Michael Higdon for handball. David Weir takes the indirect free kick.
  • 23:01 Sasa Papac produces a right-footed shot from close in and bounces off the post.
  • 22:07 Free kick awarded for a foul by Garry Brady on Kenny Miller. Strike on goal comes in from Steven Davis from the free kick,
  • 21:44 Centre by Billy Mehmet, Lee McCulloch makes a clearance.
  • 21:07 Steven Davis sends in a cross, Graham Carey makes a clearance.
  • 20:54 Steven Davis takes a shot. Blocked by Graham Carey.
  • 20:34 DaMarcus Beasley takes a shot. Blocked by Chris Innes.
  • 19:27 The assistant referee flags for offside against Michael Higdon. Allan McGregor takes the indirect free kick.
  • 19:18 The ball is delivered by Steven Whittaker, Paul Gallacher makes a save.
  • 17:43 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on DaMarcus Beasley by David Barron. Steven Davis delivers the ball from the free kick right-footed from left wing, Michael Higdon manages to make a clearance.
  • 16:49 The ball is sent over by DaMarcus Beasley, clearance made by John Potter.
  • 15:51 Michael Higdon takes a shot from a long way out which goes wide of the right-hand upright.
  • 14:38 Steven Thomson takes a shot. Save made by Allan McGregor.
  • 13:15 Steven Whittaker delivers the ball, clearance by Chris Innes.
  • 11:35 Kenny Miller delivers the ball.
  • 11:12 The official flags Billy Mehmet offside. Free kick taken by Allan McGregor.
  • 10:50 Centre by Steven Whittaker, Paul Gallacher makes a save.
  • 10:21 Inswinging corner taken left-footed by DaMarcus Beasley played to the near post, Andy Dorman manages to make a clearance.
  • 10:07 Kris Boyd takes a shot. Blocked by Lee Mair.
  • 9:46 Kevin Thomson takes a shot. Save by Paul Gallacher.
  • 9:36 Sasa Papac sends in a cross, clearance made by Lee Mair.
  • 8:43 Centre by Steven Whittaker, blocked by Graham Carey.
  • 8:33 A cross is delivered by Sasa Papac, John Potter makes a clearance.
  • 7:06 David Barron delivers the ball.
  • 5:27 Garry Brady takes a shot. Blocked by Sasa Papac.
  • 4:02 David Weir gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Michael Higdon. Graham Carey fires a strike on goal direct from the free kick, Sasa Papac gets a block in.
  • 3:23 Steven Whittaker produces a cross.
  • 1:58 The assistant referee flags for offside against Billy Mehmet. David Weir takes the indirect free kick.
  • 1:08 Shot by Michael Higdon from just outside the area goes over the net.
  • 0:26 The ball is delivered by Steven Davis.
  • 0:00 The match gets underway.

Live text and data provided by The Press Association.



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Scottish Premier results

6 Mar 2010 23:59 UK


Scottish Premier table snapshot

As it stood on 6 Mar 2010 23:59 UK

Position Team P GD PTS
1 Rangers 27 46 64
2 Celtic 27 22 51
3 Hibernian 28 9 47
4 Dundee Utd 27 5 45
5 Motherwell 28 4 44
6 Hearts 27 -3 37
7 Aberdeen 27 -9 30
8 St Johnstone 25 -6 28
9 Kilmarnock 28 -14 26
10 St Mirren 27 -14 23
11 Hamilton 27 -19 23
12 Falkirk 26 -21 20

see also
Smith weary of referee criticism
06 Mar 10 |  Rangers
Weir card call angers MacPherson
06 Mar 10 |  St Mirren
Rangers enter talks on takeover
08 Mar 10 |  Rangers


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