Take our chances
Easy enough, right? Well, being able to prod the ball home from a few yards would be a decent start, too. Morelos got a lot of stick for his jaw-dropping miss, but too much has been made of it. Firstly, for any ‘my nan could’ve scored that’ misses, it’s generally not down to a player genuinely not being good enough to find the target from a yard out but a freak misfortune when trying to guide a fast-moving ball. Secondly, the miss would’ve only equalised - and a draw was little use to us.
Instead, Morelos deserves far more criticism for his miss at 2-2, when he thundered a shot directly at Scott Bain. That could’ve won us the match, and indeed Odsonne Edouard made no mistake when presented with a near-identical chance moments later, sealing the win for Celtic. It’s hard to imagine Jason Cummings being so profligate - but then, he doesn’t quite bring what Morelos does with his hold-up play and defending from the front.
Morelos isn’t great when he has lots of time to think about things, and not is he particularly good at scoring from crosses. This adds up to a simple fact - in present form, Morelos just isn’t a particularly good player on the counter-attack. Finding a way for him to contribute in his physicality and finishing with the ball at his feet in the box is necessary - Windass and Cummings are far better at actually spearheading attacks and getting on the end of crosses. Murty needs to figure out a gameplan to allow the three to play to their strengths.
Keep the shape better
Rangers got carried away in the raucous atmosphere after the opening goal and quickly lost the run of themselves as they forgot all notion of team shape. A large part of that was probably due to the poor Sean Goss and good-but-not-great Greg Docherty taking in their first Old Firm matches, while screening a highly dodgy backup centre-back pairing. We badly missed both Ross McCrorie and Ryan Jack, but the pair will have to be much more disciplined the second time around to make sure we keep our foot on the ball and in some semblance of control of the game.
Be more precise with passing
Lumping it up to Alfredo Morelos is not a bad strategy given the wee man’s phenomenal strength and work-rate, and the dodginess of Celtic’s centre-backs. But with Daniel Candeias, Josh Windass and Jamie Murphy in the side, Rangers are the best counter-attacking side in the country. Sean Goss needs to do better to find them with precise passes in turnovers - and if he can’t, somebody else needs to step up.
Be more ruthless with substitutions
There was no doubt that Brendan Rodgers made the key subsitution to win the game while Murty comparatively dithered. The latter has always been loathe to change a winning team but he often leaves it too late to make tactical changes, preferring to leave on dangerous players who are capable of moments of magic. But Sunday was a clear example of waiting too long. Josh Windass is superb in open games but worse than useless against deep defences - it was the perfect time to sacrifice him for Jason Cummings and move the latter further up front. Instead, Murty dithered and Rangers huffed and puffed to no avail against Celtic’s ten men.