Rangers star Alfredo Morelos surprisingly praised by Dundee United defender following incident
Photo by Alan Harvey/SNS Group via Getty Images

Rangers star Alfredo Morelos surprisingly praised by Dundee United defender following incident

Rangers star Alfredo Morelos has received praise from Dundee United defender Mark Connolly despite the controversial clash between the pair at Tannadice [Sky Sports].

Morelos was booked for jumping into Connolly in the early stages of Sunday’s contest and at the time, the Irish defender appeared to be incensed that his opponent hadn’t been sent off.

Rangers’ Alfredo Morelos clashed with Mark Connolly of Dundee United. (Photo by Alan Harvey/SNS Group via Getty Images)

El Bufalo was subsequently charged with violent conduct after it was deemed that his forearm had struck the Terrors centre-back out of sight of the referee.

Rangers accepted the subsequent two-match ban, ensuring the striker missed Wednesday night’s League Cup defeat to St Mirren and will also be unavailable for Saturday’s Premiership clash against Motherwell at Ibrox.

Connolly isn’t holding any grudges, though, and when asked about the incident, he issued more praise than criticism of the Gers striker.

“The jaw is fine, no problem at all,” he said [Sky Sports]. “It was disappointing but it’s been dealt with and we move on. It’s something I don’t really want to get involved in. Tempers fly in games but I’m fine and ready to go for Hibs on Saturday.”

“He’s a top-class player who is a brilliant striker. He’s been one of the best strikers in the league for so many years. I think he can give it out and he takes it as a player as well.

“I wouldn’t say (it was about) provoking him. He’s an intelligent player, he knows what he needs to do to score goals and maybe he was a wee bit frustrated at the weekend.”

Morelos has only scored twice in his last 15 games. (Photo by Alan Harvey/SNS Group via Getty Images)

The Gers eventually won 2-1 in Dundee but after a bitterly disappointing League Cup exit in Paisley, the group’s mentality is set to be tested over the coming weeks.

Fifth-placed Motherwell travel to Ibrox on Saturday and Rangers can’t afford consecutive slip-ups with a difficult January schedule looming.

As Morelos is unavailable once again, we think Steven Gerrard should hand just a third Premiership start of the season to a reliable performer