Rangers FC had another set-back in what has officially become a worrying stretch of play by losing in the Betfred Cup semi-final against Aberdeen.
The game was back and forth, fairly even, and it was 0-0 heading into half-time. Steven Gerrard was forced to start Umar Sadiq up front as Alfredo Morelos was suspended and Kyle Lafferty was unavailable. Rangers were clearly not up to snuff on the final third, able to create some chances, but unable to finish them off.
In the second half, it was mostly more of the same and the game remained tied at zero. Rangers struggled to create offense but were holding firm on defense. Then, in the 79th minute, Aberdeen had their breakthrough.
Lewis Ferguson won a header at the back post to put it into the net which put Aberdeen up 1-0. Aberdeen had their edge and they were not going to give it up.
Steven Gerrard tried to give the offense a shot in the arm in the final ten minutes by putting Scott Arfield and Glenn Middleton into the game for Daniel Candeias and Ryan Jack, but neither was able to help you with the breakthrough.
The final whistle sounded and Aberdeen had defeated Rangers 1-0 at Hamden, which sent Aberdeen to the Betfred Cup finals against Celtic, while Rangers went home.
This failure makes an officially worrying stretch for Rangers, who had a disappointing 0-0 tie against Spartak Moscow at Ibrox in the Europa League group stage.
Rangers will luckily have a quick chance to turnaround by playing Kilmarnock so they won’t have to stew on this, but it is very disappointing. Not just the chance to stop Celtic from winning yet another trophy, but winning the Betfred Cup would’ve been another nice thing for Steven Gerrard to take as a signal of the team turning things around.
This clearly is not the end of the world for Rangers, they progressed pretty far and if there is one competition for them to fail out of early it would be this one. Still very disappointing.