Ange Postecoglou has told Sky Sports (broadcast on 2/1; 22:07) that he thought that Allan McGregor was outstanding for Rangers despite the Ibrox side suffering a heavy defeat in the first Old Firm game of the calendar year.
Celtic have gone top of the Scottish Premiership. And in truth, the game was completely put to bed inside the first-half. The Hoops found a gear Rangers could not cope with.
A brace from Reo Hatate and another from Liel Abada ensured that the home side went into the break 3-0 up. But the scoreline could have arguably been even more alarming for Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s side.
McGregor went into the game off the back of a poor performance at Ross County at the weekend. He came in for criticism for two of the opponents’ three goals. So he went into the clash with a point to prove, despite how amazing he has been in recent years.
He was not flawless. Some of his distribution was poor. But Postecoglou suggested that he was hugely impressed by the Rangers goalkeeper as he assessed his side’s performance.
“I thought our first-half was outstanding,” he told Sky Sports. “We scored our three goals, but the football we played was just brilliant.
“And we could have had a few more, Allan McGregor was outstanding in their goal.”
Old Firm loss needs to be turning point for Allan McGregor and Rangers
Of course, Postecoglou will know that praising McGregor helps highlight how dominant his side were. But the Rangers goalkeeper did manage to make a number of superb stops.
His reactions were unbelievable at times. And Celtic could have indeed put the game beyond doubt a lot sooner were it not for some of his moments of brilliance.
McGregor now has a massive role to play in the weeks ahead. Rangers have lost top spot. And they are not on a good run of form right now.
The key men within the squad now need to step up if they hope to get their domestic season back on track.
McGregor silenced some of his doubters even in defeat. Those in front of him now need to improve dramatically.
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