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Rangers' patience is paying off in title charge as lesson learned from past failures, says Steven Davis

 

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All smiles: Steven Davis with Rangers team-mate Ianis Hagi

All smiles: Steven Davis with Rangers team-mate Ianis Hagi

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Alfredo Morelos

Alfredo Morelos

PA

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All smiles: Steven Davis with Rangers team-mate Ianis Hagi

Steven Davis is looking forward to Rangers reaping the rewards of their new-found patience.

Steven Gerrard's Ibrox side were made to fight all the way to the 87th minute to grab the breakthrough at Livingston on Wednesday night.

Alfredo Morelos' late winner sealed a 1-0 triumph that moved the champions-elect to within four points of the title.

Gers could be crowned champions as soon as Sunday if they can topple St Mirren tomorrow and Celtic slip up 24 hours later. Otherwise, the Old Firm derby clash at Parkhead on March 21 will be circled in the Light Blues' diary as title D-day.

Having been made to wait 10 years to get their hands back on Scotland's biggest prize, Rangers have realised they cannot rush success. And Davis reckons that patience has been the key component to this season's impending triumph.

He said: "That has been a huge positive for us this year. I think that comes with the confidence of getting results by doing it that way.

"We have certainly learned from the past and believe in our quality and we have to just continue to show that (patience) and even in games where there are spells where it is difficult, we just keep believing, keep doing the right things and more times than not we have found the answers this season.

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"You know what you are going to get every time you come to Livingston. You are going to have to compete first and foremost and try to win the battles, and I thought we stood up to that challenge really well and it was just a matter of being patient and trying to do the right things.

"Luckily, Alfredo got the winner for us in the end."

Morelos has taken his time to get going this season but the Colombian now has seven goals in his last 10 appearances after firing home the late clincher at the Tony Macaroni Arena.

Boss Gerrard was dismissed at half-time after marching onto Livi's plastic pitch to confront referee John Beaton, who had booked Morelos for a dive despite him being clearly tripped by Lions keeper Max Stryjek.

But Northern Ireland skipper Davis praised the striker for keeping his cool.

He said: "He caused their centre-halves a lot of problems and everyone knows it was a penalty in the first half so for that to go against him, and for him to keep his nerve and keep doing the right things, I am delighted for him to get the winner at the end."

Gers kept their 29th clean sheet from 44 matches this season and Davis hailed that record, saying: "That has been a big bonus for us.

"We knew Livingston were going to play direct at times and were going to ask questions of us. I thought we stood up to that challenge really well, so I am delighted with the defensive display and another clean sheet and three points. We move onto the next game now."

Rangers have lodged an appeal against Beaton's controversial decision to book Morelos for diving.

The 14-goal frontman will seek to have the caution wiped out after launching a challenge with the Scottish Football Association.

His case will be dealt with by a fast-track disciplinary panel today.

The first-half flashpoint sparked a furious response from Gerrard on the touchline, the former Liverpool skipper having to watch the second period from the main stand after marching onto the pitch to confront referee Beaton at half-time.

Gerrard's four-letter rant at the official saw him shout: "You're bang out of order."

Beaton responded by flashing two quick-fire yellow cards, which was then followed by a red, at the Gers manager.

Gerrard will have to wait to learn what punishment he will face for his spectacular outburst.

The matter does not fall under the SFA's fast-track procedures, meaning there is no set deadline.

However, it took Hampden disciplinary chiefs almost a month to take action against Hearts boss Robbie Neilson after he also fell foul of Beaton during a 3-2 defeat to Raith in January.

If the SFA follow a similar timeframe, Gerrard will be free to take his place in the dugout at Parkhead on March 21.


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