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Celtic cut Rangers’ lead as Scottish football honours Smith

By Guardian Nigeria
28 October 2021   |   2:20 am
Rangers paid tribute to legendary former manager Walter Smith on Wednesday as their lead at the top of the Scottish Premiership was cut to two points by a 2-2 draw with Aberdeen.

(FILES) In this file photo taken on December 08, 2009 Ranger’s coach Walter Smith smiles during a press conference in Seville, on the eve of their UEFA Champions League football match against Sevilla. – Former Scotland and Rangers manager Walter Smith has died at the age of 73, the Glasgow giants confirmed on October 26, 2021. It is with profound sadness that we announce the passing of our former manager, chairman and club legend, Walter Smith,” Rangers said in a statement. (Photo by Cristina Quicler / AFP)

Rangers paid tribute to legendary former manager Walter Smith on Wednesday as their lead at the top of the Scottish Premiership was cut to two points by a 2-2 draw with Aberdeen.

Smith, who won 21 trophies in two spells as Rangers boss, died on Tuesday at the age of 73.

A minute’s silence was held at all six Scottish Premiership games, a huge banner held up by Rangers fans read: “For deeds done and glories won, thank you Walter.”

Once the action got underway, Steven Gerrard’s men struggled to cope with the emotive night at Ibrox.

Aberdeen had won just once in their last 11 games, but led 2-0 inside 16 minutes as Christian Ramirez and former Celtic captain Scott Brown headed home.

Alfredo Morelos quickly halved the home side’s deficit, but it took a controversial penalty nine minutes from time, converted by James Tavernier, to preserve Rangers’ unbeaten home record in the league stretching back to March 2020.

Celtic took advantage of dropped points for their Glasgow rivals with a 3-1 win at Hibernian to move up to second.

The Hoops not won a league game away to Hibs since 2014, but put that rotten record behind them with three goals inside the opening half hour at Easter Road.

Anthony Ralston’s diving header from David Turnbull’s free-kick found the top corner before Cameron Carter-Vickers fired home from a corner.

Kyogo Furuhashi then slotted home his 10th goal in 15 games since moving to the Glasgow giants to round off a brilliant team move involving Tom Rogic and Jota.

“I thought the first half was probably the best we’ve played all year,” said Celtic manager Ange Postecoglou.

“We scored three and could have had another three. It was really pleasing to see, especially here against a good side.”

Hibs have now lost four straight games after a bright start to the season, but got a consolation before half-time when Martin Boyle forced the ball over the line from close range.

Hearts remain unbeaten after 11 games, but fall to third after a 1-1 draw at St Johnstone.

Dundee United also missed the chance to go second as they were held 1-1 by the 10-men of Livingston.

Ross County remain bottom, but got their first league win under Malky McKay in emphatic fashion with a 5-0 thrashing of Dundee at Dens Park.

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