'There was a big performance coming' ... Rangers star proved Gerrard 100% right against Maribor
Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

Morelos puts eventful week behind him with outstanding Maribor performance

It has been an eventful week for Alfredo Morelos. Sent off so early on the opening weekend of the league season against Aberdeen for an incident so innocuous that the SFA later rescinded his dismissal, he was charged with once more leading the Rangers attack in a tricky Europa League first leg against Maribor.

It took the Colombian just six minutes to put all that behind him and open the scoring with an early tap-in to settle the nerves at Ibrox, but it wasn’t a flawless performance.

Morelos should have had his and Rangers’ second in the closing stages of the first half. Daniel Candeias laid him on for another simple finish but Morelos got too excited and went too early and the goal was chalked off for a needless offside call.

GLASGOW, SCOTLAND – JULY 29: Alfredo Morelos of Rangers celebrates after he scores the opening goal during the Pre-Season Friendly match between Rangers and Wigan Athletic at Ibrox Stadium on July 29, 2018 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Morelos must have been ruing that miss when Maribor’s Mitja Viler levelled with a stunning volley just second later, but he didn’t let it show in the second period, as he continued to run the visitors ragged.

Steven Gerrard said he had ‘felt there was a big performance coming’ from his first choice centre forward and Morelos produced, especially after the interval as part of a Rangers performance his manager described as ‘the best we’ve seen from Rangers so far’.

He earned the penalty that James Tavernier converted – to show that interest from West Brom had not unsettled him – which put Rangers back in the lead.

GLASGOW, SCOTLAND – JULY 29: Alfredo Morelos of Rangers celebrates after he scores the opening goal during the Pre-Season Friendly match between Rangers and Wigan Athletic at Ibrox Stadium on July 29, 2018 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

He even nearly got his head on the Jamie Murphy cross that Lassana Coulibaly converted to double Rangers’ advantage with just four minutes of normal time remaining.

The silly offside last night and the petulance at Pittodrie – he still shouldn’t have reacted to provokation – is the worst of Morelos.

But, there was also a showcase of his best form as he was a menace throughout and good news for Gerrard is that Morelos is now available for the game against St Mirren and he will hoping for more big performances like this one as the season wears on – starting on Sunday.

LOGIN to Comment
LOGIN to Comment