There were a number of good performances from the players as Rangers beat Hearts 2-0 at Ibrox. From middle to front, the play was exciting and impressive. These were the three main candidates, in my opinion, for man of the match.

The first was Jamie Murphy. Not only was his goal very impressive, but his all-round game was excellent. He stretched the Hearts defence by staying wide when required, but was able to move inside to get involved, which led to his goal. His touch and ability to beat players created plenty of chances. He also won free kicks in dangerous areas. The link-up play with those around him was strong. His teammates have real confidence in his ability to receive the ball under pressure.

Whilst at the game, sitting so far away from the Broomloan goals, it was hard to appreciate just how good his goal was. The movement showed his intelligence, being the only player to read that Docherty wasn’t going to shoot. The composure to take the ball past two defenders and the goalkeeper under pressure was impressive. To then be able to open up his body and slot the ball home was a real testament to his ability. He’s now scored three goals in three games, and looks every inch the player we expected when he signed.

The second man of the match candidate was Greg Docherty. His performance really raised the mood of the Rangers support from the first whistle. He won the ball without ever having to dive in. He drove forward at every opportunity, but knew when to play a simple pass as well. His shooting drew a couple of good saves from the goalkeeper, and set up the Murphy goal with a beautiful pass. For a 21 year old midfielder, making his first Ibrox start, he was highly impressive. Many fans commented after the match that they didn’t realise he would be that good, and the fact Rangers signed him for £600k was a complete steal.

My man of the match, though, was Daniel Candeias. He set up the second goal with a good low cross, but for the preceding 88 minutes he had been an inspirational player on the right. He got in plenty of good crosses, which were either defended well or just evaded a Rangers player. As always, he worked very hard, especially off the ball, and forced mistakes from the Hearts players. On the break, he was very dangerous, and should have had another assist when he played in Windass in the second half. Yet again, he showed ability, desire and energy and never seemed to stop moving.

Candeias was unlucky with a couple of great runs where he cut in from wide to centre. He does this often in matches, but only now do we seem to have the players who can spot that. More than once, he killed the ball coming down from the air, even under pressure. His link up with Tavernier, which has been a strength all season, yet again bore fruit with the second goal. When you consider that many worried he would struggle after Caixinha left, the fact he’s up there in conversations about who the Rangers player of the year is shows you just how good his attitude is.

Do you agree with the choice of Candeias? Tweet us @rangersnewsuk with your thoughts!