Rangers thrash 10-man Hearts to go top

Antonio Colak tops the Premiership scoring charts with eight goals after his Tynecastle double

Ruthless Rangers moved top of the Scottish Premiership after an impressive thrashing of 10-man Hearts.

An Antonio Colak double rewarded the visitors’ electric opening, before Cammy Devlin’s senseless lunge on Rabbi Matondo earned a first-half red.

That allowed Rangers to coast to a victory, crowned by substitute Alfredo Morelos and Ryan Kent – his first goal since March – in the closing stages.

Rangers go a point clear of Celtic, who face Motherwell later on Saturday.

Hearts remain third, now six points behind Rangers, after their 100% league record at Tynecastle this season was demolished.

Robbie Neilson backed up his bold pledge to take the game to Rangers by starting on-loan Wigan Stephen Humphry to bolster an attack-minded line-up.

But Hearts – despite a lively start – couldn’t live with Rangers’ speed and incision at the other end. Within 40 minutes the Ibrox side were two goals and a man up and Neilson’s game-plan was out the window.

Any hopes of a comeback were effectively ended by Devlin’s senseless dismissal, rushing in to plant his studs on Matondo’s ankle as the Rangers winger shielded by the ball from Alex Cochrane on the touchline. Devlin prides himself on combative play, but it was sheer stupidity.

Colak, again preferred to Morelos, continues to justify his status as Rangers’ first-choice striker. The Croat had just four touches in Hearts’ box and two shots. Both ended in the back of the net as he clinically took his tally to 11 goals in 14 games.

Colak barley had to jump to meet Kent’s excellent Ryan Kent’s whipped cross and divert a header in off the post for the early breakthrough.

Scott Arfield missed a glaring chance, guiding wide from 10 yards, but the second goal wasn’t long in coming. John Lundstram’s raking pass found Matondo, who darted in from the right touchline and threaded a pass for Colak to beat Craig Gordon from a tight angle.

Hearts were spared further first-half punishment when Arfield had a goal ruled out for a dubious foul by Matondo on Gordon.

The dismissal made it a damage limitation exercise for Hearts. Both sides, perhaps with an eye on looming European action this week, made a double change at the break. Hearts fans will hope the withdrawal of Barrie McKay and Stephen Kingsley was nothing more than precautionary.

While Rangers’ intensity noticeably dropped, they had plenty of chances to add to their lead, and Gordon was finally beaten a third time when James Tavernier teed up Morelos to blast home.

And Kent rounded off an emphatic Rangers performance with the pick of the goals, curling into the bottom corner.

More to follow.

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Heart of Midlothian

  1. Squad number1Player nameGordon

  2. Squad number2Player nameSmith

  3. Squad number20Player nameNeilson

  4. Squad number3Player nameKingsley

  5. Squad number19Player nameCochrane

  6. Squad number29Player nameHumphrys

  7. Squad number8Player nameKiomourtzoglou

  8. Squad number14Player nameDevlin

  9. Squad number17Player nameForrest

  10. Squad number18Player nameMcKay

  11. Squad number9Player nameShankland

  1. Squad number5Player nameHaring

  2. Squad number7Player nameGrant

  3. Squad number16Player nameHalliday

  4. Squad number30Player nameGinnelly

  5. Squad number77Player nameSnodgrass


  1. Squad number1Player nameMcGregor

  2. Squad number2Player nameTavernier

  3. Squad number6Player nameGoldson

  4. Squad number26Player nameDavies

  5. Squad number31Player nameBarisic

  6. Squad number8Player nameJack

  7. Squad number4Player nameLundstram

  8. Squad number17Player nameMatondo

  9. Squad number37Player nameArfield

  10. Squad number14Player nameKent

  11. Squad number9Player nameColak

  1. Squad number10Player nameDavis

  2. Squad number19Player nameSands

  3. Squad number20Player nameMorelos

  4. Squad number30Player nameSakala

  5. Squad number71Player nameTillman



Formation 4-4-1-1

  • 1Gordon
  • 2Smith
  • 20Neilson
  • 3KingsleySubstituted forHallidayat 45′minutes
  • 19Cochrane
  • 29HumphrysBooked at 66mins
  • 8KiomourtzoglouSubstituted forGrantat 61′minutes
  • 14DevlinBooked at 39mins
  • 17ForrestSubstituted forHaringat 44′minutes
  • 18McKaySubstituted forSnodgrassat 45′minutes
  • 9ShanklandSubstituted forGinnellyat 61′minutes


  • 5Haring
  • 7Grant
  • 11Mackay-Steven
  • 12Atkinson
  • 13Stewart
  • 16Halliday
  • 21Sibbick
  • 30Ginnelly
  • 77Snodgrass


Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 1McGregor
  • 2TavernierBooked at 36mins
  • 6Goldson
  • 26DaviesBooked at 14minsSubstituted forSandsat 45′minutes
  • 31Barisic
  • 8JackSubstituted forDavisat 45′minutes
  • 4Lundstram
  • 17MatondoSubstituted forSakalaat 79′minutes
  • 37ArfieldSubstituted forTillmanat 63′minutes
  • 14Kent
  • 9ColakSubstituted forMorelosat 63′minutes


  • 3Yilmaz
  • 10Davis
  • 19Sands
  • 20Morelos
  • 23Wright
  • 30Sakala
  • 33McLaughlin
  • 38King
  • 71Tillman

Steven McLean


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