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Dropping Kris Boyd is reigniting his striking power: Ally McCoist

By Andy Newport

Rangers boss Ally McCoist hopes dropping Kris Boyd may give the frontman the spark to rediscover his best form.

The former Scotland striker was benched for last week's defeat at Hearts and was again left amongst the substitutes as Jon Daly started against Kilmarnock on Sunday.

But he took just 90 seconds to make his mark with the crucial second goal against his old club as the Light Blues clinched a William Hill Scottish Cup last 16 slot with a 3-0 win.

It was the 31-year-old's 15th goal in 16 games against his former employers.

He was Killie's top scorer last year with 22 goals but the record Scottish Premiership scorer has struggled to live up to the standards he set during his first Ibrox stint since returning in the summer.

But McCoist hopes Boyd will now kick on and add to the nine goals he has managed so far.

He said: "We felt big Jon Daly was terrific leading the line for us last week and we decided not to change it. It's fortunate that we can bring in the goalscoring threat of 'Boydy'.

"It's strange how football works, he's on the park a minute and-a-half against the team he scored 22 goals for last season and he scores. Sometimes these things are meant to be.

"You are always tempted to start 'Boydy'. He is capable of scoring goals against anybody. It would be crazy of me to say you are not tempted to play him.

"But we just felt that him coming on a little bit fresher, having taken him out of it again, might be what he needs. He might benefit from it. From 'Boydy's' point of view, introducing him later on in the game might help him.

"The way it turned out, Jon and Kenny Miller were working the defenders really hard. So when 'Boydy' comes on later, maybe the defenders are just not so sharp as they were at the start of the game.

"I hope he can kick on from that. It was a good finish from him and you could feel everyone's relief and delight for him."

Nicky Law had opened the scoring 19 minutes in when his 20-yard strike beat Craig Samson after nicking off Sammy Clingan.

Killie never really threatened and their fifth straight defeat was confirmed with 19 minutes left as Boyd showed little mercy to Samson by firing home at the near post after the goalkeeper flapped at Lee McCulloch's header down.

Law then wrapped up the win with another sublime finish six minutes from time.

It was a welcome boost for McCoist after a week of speculation about his own future following the 2-0 Tynecastle defeat which leaves the Ibrox men nine points adrift of their Championship title rivals.

"The criticism goes with the territory," the Gers boss said.

"Last week was a disappointing result for us but we were not panicking by any stretch of the imagination.

"This result was really just what the doctor ordered after the disappointment of losing last week.

"We've played Inverness and St Johnstone and it was another tough game against a team from the top flight and we knew it would take a good performance for us to win it and that's what the boys gave us.

"I'd settle for that standard throughout the team and there were some very good individual performances within that. But I'd settle for that team performance week in, week out."

Killie boss Allan Johnston said: "It was a cup tie but we didn't play to our potential. We never closed them down quickly enough, we let them get behind the ball, we passed the ball well but without actually creating any chances, it was all just square or backwards passes.

"We've got to be a lot more positive. It's worrying especially when we're losing goals in the manner we are just now.

"We've got to be harder to beat. We're losing the first goal and seem to be chasing games, we've got to stay in games, we can't afford to open up and be easy to counter on."

Belfast Telegraph


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