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Rangers held by bottom club Ross County

Both sides were guilty of poor marking from corners in the first half

Both sides were guilty of poor marking from corners in the first half

Rangers missed the chance to go second in the Scottish Premiership as they were held to a draw at bottom side Ross County.

In a first-half littered with errors, Clint Hill rose unopposed to head the visitors in front from an eighth-minute corner.

Andrew Davies then levelled in almost identical fashion.

Liam Boyce shot wide for County late on, with Rangers’ James Tavernier drilling into the side-netting.

Rangers nudge above Hearts into third place, while the Staggies close to within a point of Dundee.

County’s run without a win extends to 10 games and, while Jim McIntyre’s men will take confidence from their showing, there remains room for improvement in defence.

The same applies to Rangers, who had chances to stretch their lead before County’s equaliser.

The opening goal came from a cheaply-conceded corner when no-one picked Hill up and the veteran defender powered in a header.

County responded with Davies seeing his header kicked off the line in what was an unheeded warning for Rangers.

The Dingwall defence continued to creak, with a Marcus Fraser slip allowing Joe Garner in, but the striker hesitated for too long.

Rangers then engineered a four-on-two situation on the counter-attack and, when Lee Wallace played in Kenny Miller, a second goal looked inevitable. But his effort hit the side-netting.

County always looked promising going forward and were given encouragement by some poor distribution from visiting goalkeeper Wes Foderingham.

The equaliser appeared to be straight off the training ground. From a corner, everyone raced to the front post, defenders were blocked and Davies peeled away to the back, where Chris Burke’s inch perfect delivery arrived.

The calamitous defending continued when Tavernier inexplicably played the ball back, Boyce almost nipped in, and Foderingham clearly handled to get himself out of trouble. However, the incident went unpunished to the fury of the Staggies bench.

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Rangers goalscorer Hill (right) applauds the visiting fans at full-time

There were fewer lapses in concentration after the interval, making it a less entertaining spectacle, but the game remained on a knife edge.

Foderingham saved from Boyce, before Miller saw a great angled effort beaten away by Scott Fox.

In the closing stages, County’s Tim Chow fired over, wasting a great opportunity. Substitute Alex Schalk then released Boyce, who fired a hurried shot narrowly wide.

In the 90th minute, Tavernier took a touch as he approached the six-yard box from the right but fired wide from an angle when a first time shot might have paid off.

There was still time for Schalk to give Foderingham a fright with a swerving strike that keeper awkwardly fended off.

With both sides showing tremendous desire to win, both could argue they might have deserved maximum points given the chances they had a different stages.

Neither did with the single point perhaps a better outcome for County given their position.

Ross County defender Andrew Davies: “I just felt we had some really good opportunities in the final third where we could have maybe done a little bit better.

“We’ve had six or seven weeks where results have not gone our way and it was very easy to play today against a very good team and fold.

“But the lads grafted for each other and I’m proud of every single one of them.

“We’ve worked on a lot of corners. It hasn’t been coming off for us in the last few games, but when you do something like that, it is full credit to the manager.

“This club is the best I’ve ever been at for working on set plays and I think they are so important because they get you goals.”

Rangers manager Mark Warburton: “We were looking for the three points – it’s two points dropped and that’s no disrespect to County.

“We weren’t playing as well as we wanted to play, but we had chances in the first half. You can’t give up opportunities like that.

“If we get a consistent high level of performance then the results will come.

“You are where you are. We dropped two points by being sloppy and not clinical enough.

“We got the early goal and then we had six counter-attacks that we had to take advantage of and get ourselves out of sight.

“Last week was very good, but we want to make sure our average is much better than that. I thought we did enough to be out of sight by half-time.”

Live Text

Match ends, Ross County 1, Rangers 1.

Second Half ends, Ross County 1, Rangers 1.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Wes Foderingham.

Attempt saved. Alex Schalk (Ross County) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

Foul by Liam Boyce (Ross County).

Andy Halliday (Rangers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Attempt missed. Tony Dingwall (Ross County) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left.

Attempt blocked. Liam Boyce (Ross County) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Foul by Alex Schalk (Ross County).

Jason Holt (Rangers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Attempt missed. James Tavernier (Rangers) right footed shot from the right side of the box is close, but misses to the right.

Attempt missed. Alex Schalk (Ross County) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right.

Foul by Marcus Fraser (Ross County).

Barrie McKay (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt blocked. Tony Dingwall (Ross County) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.

Attempt missed. Liam Boyce (Ross County) left footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left.

Chris Burke (Ross County) is shown the yellow card.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Rob Kiernan.

Attempt missed. Tim Chow (Ross County) right footed shot from outside the box is too high.

Christopher Routis (Ross County) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Christopher Routis (Ross County).

Josh Windass (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution, Rangers. Joseph Dodoo replaces Michael O’Halloran.

Tony Dingwall (Ross County) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Tony Dingwall (Ross County).

Andy Halliday (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution, Ross County. Tony Dingwall replaces Ryan Dow.

Attempt missed. Chris Burke (Ross County) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right.

Ryan Dow (Ross County) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Josh Windass (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Ryan Dow (Ross County).

Martyn Waghorn (Rangers) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Martyn Waghorn (Rangers).

Liam Boyce (Ross County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Lee Wallace (Rangers).

Chris Burke (Ross County) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match Andrew Davies (Ross County) because of an injury.

Corner, Rangers. Conceded by Kenny van der Weg.

Jason Holt (Rangers) is shown the yellow card.

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/37814107