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Weir calls for Rangers discipline

Pedro Mendes is sent off by Steve Conroy against Kilmarnock
Mendes became the third Rangers player to be sent off in recent games

David Weir says Rangers must tackle their disciplinary problems as two points from their last two games is not good enough for the reigning champions.

Rangers were held to a goalless draw by Kilmarnock on Saturday - seven days after another stalemate at Motherwell.

"It's something we've got to address," said Rangers captain Weir.

"We won at Hearts and we were a man down there. But that's three games where we have been a man down and it obviously makes it difficult for us."

Rangers were fortunate to leave Motherwell's Fir Park with a point when Madjid Bougherra picked up two yellow cards for dissent and Allan McGregor pulled off a brilliant penalty save late on.

And it was a similar story in Ayrshire, with Pedro Mendes dismissed just before half-time and Kilmarnock going on to create the best of the chances, despite also having Manuel Pascali ordered off in the latter stages.

"We've got to go away and win games, but every game is difficult," said Weir.

There was a bit of a mix-up because Walter Smith had a go at us, thinking we were running over to the ref to get him booked

Kilmarnock striker Conor Sammon

"The Motherwell game was a tough game and they played well against us and Kilmarnock also played well and put a lot into the game.

"Nobody gives you anything for nothing, so maybe it's going to be difficult for everyone this year, but we are never happy with a point."

Indeed, whereas last week Celtic also drew at home to Dundee United, Rangers' Glasgow rivals went on to beat Hearts on Sunday to take over at the top of the Scottish Premier League by two points.

"We didn't win last week and we didn't win this week," said Weir. "The bottom line is we've got to be winning games.

"If we keep dropping points, we won't be top of the league."

Both camps agreed that the red cards for Mendes and Pascali were harsh on a day when seven other players were cautioned by referee Steve Conroy and Rangers manager Walter Smith was sent to the stand.

"I'm not going to criticise the referee because it's a hard enough job," said Weir.

Walter Smith airs his views to Conor Sammon
Walter Smith was sent to the stand after confronting Conor Sammon

"But, for Pedro's first booking, I don't think he even saw the guy coming and just stuck his leg up to get the ball.

"He has made contact, but I don't think there was any intent.

"The second one, I don't even know if he made contact. I think it's harsh."

Smith was told to take a seat in the stand following an angry exchange with Killie players - particularly Conor Sammon - when Mendes was dismissed, but the Rangers boss admitted after the game his actions were wrong.

Sammon added: "There was a bit of a mix-up because Walter Smith had a go at us, thinking we were running over to the ref to get him booked.

"I can understand, in the heat of the moment, it might have looked like that, but the referee will tell you we were only looking for the advantage to be played."

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see also
Celtic 2-1 Hearts
20 Sep 09 |  Scottish Premier
Kilmarnock 0-0 Rangers
19 Sep 09 |  Scottish Premier
Motherwell 0-0 Rangers
12 Sep 09 |  Scottish Premier

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