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Morelos can weave even more magic, says Gerrard


Double delight: Alfredo Morelos celebrates

Double delight: Alfredo Morelos celebrates

Getty Images

Double delight: Alfredo Morelos celebrates

Steven Gerrard declared Rangers hitman Alfredo Morelos punch-perfect after watching his knock-out performance against Rapid Vienna.

But the Ibrox boss has dismissed comparisons with best pound-for-pound player he ever lined up alongside.

Spurred on by a raucous Ibrox crowd, Colombian Morelos netted twice and also won his side a penalty as Gers moved to the top of their Europa League section with an impressive 3-1 win against the Austrians.

“He fed off the supporters,” said Gerrard. “You can see the love both ways.

“The fans have been behind him from day one whether he’s got it wrong or got it right like last night. It’s a fantastic relationship.

“His behaviour on the pitch, his application, his selflessness got him his reward with two fantastic goals.

“He got some great service with the cross from James Tavernier for the first, Ovie Ejaria’s through-ball for the penalty then Daniel Candeias’s back-heel for the third.

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“If you give him service he will score us goals.

“But everything last night was perfect from him. It was a top performance.”

Morelos left team-mate Joe Worrall so impressed with his display, the Nottingham Forest loanee even compared him to Barcelona’s Luis Suarez.

But Gerrard does not want to heap extra pressure on the 22-year-old by likening him to his former Liverpool colleague.

He said: “I don’t want to compare Alfredo to Luis Suarez.

“Obviously Luis is a lot older, a lot more experienced, he’s a world-class player — probably the best I played with.

“So it’s unfair to compare them just yet.

“But there are a lot of similarities in behaviour. They both play on the edge. They want to win, be it training or games, they can both finish, they score big goals, they’re relentless in the way they play.

“So yeah there’s similarities but Alfredo is a young lad who’s still learning and growing so I think it’s a bit unfair to compare him to Suarez.”

Having stormed to the top of Group G, Gers next aim is to slash back their eight-point deficit on runaway Ladbrokes Premiership leaders Hearts tomorrow.

Gerrard is hoping for another pumped-up performance from both his players and the Light Blues faithful.

“We’d love Ibrox to be bouncing and rocking again,” he said.

“I’m sure the supporters are going to be going to Ibrox in good spirits after last night.

“But we also have to play our part. We can’t start slow and wait for the crowd to lift us.

“Last night the players fed off the atmosphere and it really took them to a high level. But the players’ quality, their tempo and intensity made the fans even more vocal.

“It worked perfectly yesterday and as a manager I’d love to see that again on Sunday.

“Ibrox was rocking, it was shaking, it was bouncing. I’ve experienced that many times when at Anfield. The support was almost like a 12th man and it felt like that last night.

“I’m blessed because as a player I felt I had the best support in the world and the fans got performances out of me because of the noise they created.

“Rangers have done that as well over many years with all their successful teams but last night was ... wow! The noise took you back.

“I got involved in it emotionally myself but that’s what football is all about at a top club and the more times the supporters can bring that, then the better it is for the players.”

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