Rangers reign over Hearts

Glasgow Rangers moved up into second place in the Scottish Premier League on Sunday (19/11), following a one-nil win over Heart of Midlothian in Edinburgh.

Edinburgh, Nov 20: Glasgow Rangers moved up into second place in the Scottish Premier League on Sunday (19/11), following a one-nil win over Heart of Midlothian in Edinburgh.

Spanish striker Nacho Novo scored the only goal after 78 minutes to extend Rangers' unbeaten run to seven games, but they are still 15 points behind champions Celtic.

Hearts have now gone seven games without a win and are due to appoint their seventh coach in 21 months next week.

Hearts' off-field problems came to the surface at Tynecastle on Sunday as their inspirational skipper Steven Pressley was omitted from the starting line-up again - most of the Hearts faithful are convinced that it's because the 33-year-old Scot told a press conference that there was 'significant unrest' at the Edinburgh club.

Having not won in seven games, it was perhaps not the best time then to welcome Rangers to Edinburgh and Hearts were fortunate to go into half time still on level terms.

Rangers' front two Nacho Novo and Dado Prso could each have bagged a couple in the opening 45 minutes.

Hearts came out with more desire in the second half and seconds after the restart, Lithuanian striker Andrius Velika tested the reflexes of Allan McGregor in the Rangers goal.

However, meaningful Hearts attack were thin on the ground and home 'keeper Craig Gordon had much the busier afternoon.

The Scottish international produced a smart save to deny Barry Ferguson in the 51st minute and 16 minutes later, following Prso's clever cross, Gordon made a marvellous point blank save from the prolific Kris Boyd.

As the clock ran down, it seemed that Gordon would single-handedly earn Hearts a point, but Novo had other ideas and it was his drive from 25 metres that finally found the net with 12 minutes to go.

It was the former Spanish international's fourth goal of the season.

Gordon was perhaps a little unlucky to see the ball flick the right boot of team-mate Christophe Berra on it's way to goal, but on the balance of play Rangers deserved their lead.

There was no way back for Hearts and they duly lost their fourth game in seven outings.

Rangers move up to second as a result, but are still 15 points behind champions Celtic.

Roman Romanov, the son of Hearts owner Vladimir, will be hoping the appointment of new coach Eugenijus Riabovas next week will deal with some of their problems - but a seventh coach in 21 months is hardly the basis for consistency on the pitch.

Bureau Report

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