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'Disrespectful' Rangers boss Caixinha fired Kilmarnock up: Sammon


By Andy Newport

Conor Sammon has accused Rangers boss Pedro Caixinha of disrespecting Kilmarnock by naming his line-up a day early.

With a defence ravaged by injuries, the Portuguese coach confirmed youngsters David Bates and Myles Beerman would be making their first-team debuts.

He later explained he had taken the unusual course of action as a show of faith in his depleted squad. But Killie frontman Sammon says the move only served to fire up his side as they battled their way to a deserved 0-0 draw on Wednesday night.

"It's a bit of a strange one," he said. "I don't really understand it. I'm not sure if he was trying to highlight the fact that maybe they had a few injuries or something.

"But we used it for a little bit of extra motivation by thinking, 'yeah, it's a little bit disrespectful'.

"It just fuelled us even more to go out and do the business."

Caretaker Killie boss Lee McCulloch was adamant he did not change his starting line-up after Caixinha dispensed with the element of surprise.

But he did tinker with his game-plan, putting Sammon up against teenage left-back Beerman.

The 18-year-old former Manchester City winger stood up to the test well and Sammon reckons he could have a big part to play for Rangers going forward.

The Irishman said: "He's a smallish full-back but I thought he did well. You can see he has a bright future in the game."

Beerman revealed he only discovered he was playing when Caixinha handed his line-up to the media during his pre-match press conference.

With skipper Lee Wallace now facing a month on the sidelines following surgery on an abdominal problem, the youngster could find himself vying with Lee Hodson for a starting slot when this month's Old Firm double-header with Celtic comes around.

"It was different class," grinned the Malta Under-21 international after his bow. "It's always been my dream to be a professional footballer.

"I can't really describe my feelings after making my debut for such a massive club. I spoke to Lee before the game. He's a great guy and really encouraged me. He gave me tips ahead of the game.

"I'll just keep on working hard, doing my best. I just need to make sure I'm ready for it, no matter my age or physicality."

Belfast Telegraph


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