Last Updated: 13/09/11 4:42pm
A Rangers win always looked likely after Johnny Russel's disastrous red card in the first half, and Kyle Lafferty duly obliged in the second half. Steven Davis could have made it two but was denied by the post but Peter Houston will be pleased with his side who looked threatening frequently despite playing nearly an hour with ten men. Thank you for your company at Tannadice and I'll see you all soon!
Rankin gives the ball away to Ortiz but makes amends as he picks it back up and charges down the left with Broadfoot conceding a corner. Last chance for the hosts!
Goain clears and Rankin tries a thunderbolt from 30 yards which lands with the Dundee United fans behind goal.
Gunning is on hand to clear from six yards as Broadfoot's ball in forced a top clearance before Rangers pick it up again but McCulloch plays a poor cross to McKay which flies out.
Kenneth is offside as he looks to latch on to Swanson's flick as Peter Houston looks dejected on the sidelines as Rangers win a free-kick in the centre of the pitch.
Naismith's header is inches away from Lafferty's toe as he stretched to meet it before Pernis stepped in and claimed.
McKay is immediately in the thick of it but on the defensive front as ke knocks Swanson off the ball before the hosts pick it back up in their bid to find a late equaliser.
Davis is again desperately unlucky not to score as Naismith's inadvertant dummy finds the Rangers captain whose fierce drive keeps climbing and marginally flies above Pernis' net.
In a collison with Dow, McGregor seems to be hacked down while making a clearance but Murray waves play on and Whittaker runs away with the ball.
Naismith picks it up from the goal kick and knocks it back to Ortiz whose chipped shot is parried by Pernis for a Rangers corner.
The Dundee United fans are in agony as Rankin's strike looks destined for the net but his half-volley is narrowly wide, with McGregor running the risk of a booking for time-wasting on the goal kick.
Broadfoot intercepts a lovely move between Rankin and Swanson and seeks Wylde who gets the ball on to his left foot and crosses into the edge of the area with Kenneth clearing.
Swanson picks the ball up on the edge of the penalty area and has a pop which carries a sting but in the end it lies with the fans behind goal.
Davis holds up play impressively and allows more Rangers players to join the attack but a mistake by Whittaker allows Dow in before the defender makes amends and clears the ball out of play.
After some uncertain defending, Rangers eventually hoof the ball away from their box, with Naismith's lovely ball finding Wylde who drives across goal with Lafferty inches away from making contact.
McGregor punches clear the free-kick as Rangers look to break before Kenneth hussles the ball out for a goal-kick under pressure from Wylde.
Bocanegra is booked after a poor challenge on Flood that leaves Dundee United with a free-kick 30 yards out from goal.
Corner to the hosts with Rankin's cross cleared by Goain before Dalla Valle's ball is again dealt with by Goain.
Another good chance is spurned by Rangers as Wylde drifts a corner in with Goain getting to chance to poke home from 10 yards but he blasts wide.
It's risky defending from Kenneth but the Dundee man does well to clear before Davis is unbelievably unlucky not to score after picking the ball up the in the six-yard box, unmarked, before firing off the one post with the ball flying off the other post and outo to safety.
Dalla Valle has a pop and nearly strikes lucky when his effort flies off McGregor's shoulder but Broadfoot is on hand to divert the ball out of the path of Swanson.
Whittaker drifts down the right and crosses in to Davis in the six-yard box whose header draws a marvellous save from Pernis but offside is given against the Rangers captain.
Dalle Valle does well to turn past Bocanegra but Rankin's touch is poor as he looked to get down the left side and Rangers win a throw-in.
It's lovely football from Rangers now as they move the ball around smoothly as the hosts seek to maintain any form of possession right now.
Naismith picks up the ball in midfield and chips over to Lafferty but Watson does well, heading the ball off the striker and out for a goal-kick.
The hosts have picked up their game but Swanson is guilty of being too enthusiastic on Broadfoot and hacks down the Rangers man, ending a good spell of possession.
The goal looked likely and it has finally come as Wylde crosses in from the right and from six yards Lafferty heads across goal leaving Pernis stranded.
Dalla Valle trips Edu as Rangers win a free-kick from 25 yards out which Davis and Wylde debate over who will take.
Lafferty drifts offside behind Watson as Wylde's ball drops into the penalty area but you get the feeling that Rangers are closing in on the opening goal any time now.
Dalla Valle floors Broadfoot in the corner to simply try and win back possession but a foul is given and Rangers pick up possession again.
The hosts seem to have had all their attacking impetus of the day dissolved as Flood's ball to Rankin on the right travels poorly out of play.
Pernis shows top handling as he claims Davis' cross to the far post, before Rangers are straight back on the attack with Naismith staying onside from Edu's pass before crossing into Lafferty who heads over.
Davis' corner is poorly controlled by Lafferty and it rolls out for a throw-on as Rankin seeks treatment after receiving a knock from the Rangers striker.
Nearly a fantastic opening for Rangers as Naismith's through ball to Ortiz was superbly cleared by Gunning before more men joined the attack and this time Watson was on hand to block Lafferty's close range shot.
Naismith is incensed after his through ball to Lafferty hit referee Murray before Wylde again bombs down the left but his cross into the far post sails over the bar.
Dalla Valle is down after a collision in the penalty area and is being treated to as Rangers resume play from the re-start.
Flood is penalised for a foul on Edu and Lafferty collects from Davis, shooting on goal which took a deflection off Gunning with Pernis getting down to make the save.
Kenneth finds Swanson who looks to skip past Broadfoot but Rankin is offside when trying to play a one-two with the striker.
Lafferty's neat touch for Naismith is glorious but Rankin gets involved to interrupt Rangers' attack and plays it back to Pernis.
William Duncan Scott writes: "Rangers should win this one but must be marking better at United corners - would like to see Mckay make his debut."
Bobby Cant writes: "The sending off is a game changer, ..and I'll say that Rangers should go on to absolutely "horse" Dundee Utd 1 - 0"
Johnny Russel's sending off was suicidal as Rangers now have a man advantage for the second half but Peter Houston's side have been resolute as Danny Swanson looks threatening with John Rankin also impressive. Stay tuned for the second half and keep those e-mails coming into firstname.lastname@example.org
Edu plays his first poor pass of the day as he curls a ball into Naismith which completely eludes the striker and lands in Pernis' arms.
Wylde takes the corner which Watson clears before Wylde crosses back in with the hosts again managing to clear as the SPL Champions pick up the pace with seconds to go.
Rangers are finishing the half on top as Davis and Broadfoot link up before Whittaker fires from the edge of the area with Gunning poking it behind for a corner.
Lafferty produces a fantastic run down the left as he skips past Dixon and decides to have a pop at the near post which Pernis parries before Gunning clears.
It's Kenneth there again but this time it's a harder header as Broadfoot breathes down his neck and forces Kenneth's header over the bar.
Rankin is still acting as a superb middle man in midfield as Rangers struggle to track his runs as he continues to link up play superbly.
Edu floors Swanson as the striker still looks lively in Rangers' penalty area, but the hosts give the ball away from the free-kick and Whittaker's ball into Lafferty ends up in a goal kick.
Rangers have picked up their game now as they boss the midfield with Edu and Broadfoot exchanging passes but Ortiz is offside from Davis' pass. You feel Dundee United need to score first right now or the numerical advantage will come to haunt them.
Best chance of the game for Rangers as Davis plays in Naismith who takes a touch to control before stabbing at goal with his left foot before seeing his effort trickle inches wide.
Swanson makes a superb run down the left but Goain steps in and blocks him off after Broadfoot was left trailing.
It's fireworks at Tannadice as Swanson nearly capitalises on a Goain slip before McGregor steps up quickly to dive down low and parry the ball clear.
Rangers are still being pegged back in their own half but the genius of Naismith finds Ortiz as Rangers look to break with Pernis somewhat fortunately for handball not to be given as he looked to have handled clear on the edge of the area.
Peter Houston doesn't look a happy man on the sidelines, especially after the impressive start that his side have made but Rankin is still a livewire in midfield as he dispossesses Edu and gets the hosts on the front foot.
It's a stupid moment from the Dundee United man. During a spat with Broadfoot he headbutts the Rangers full-back, who admirably stays on his feet, but Calum Murray saw the whole thing and now the rest of the game will be 11 v 10.
Edu's switching off play has been top-notch so far but Whittaker lets down a superb 50-yard ball by letting it travel out of play, with Rankin whipping a ball into the near post which is caught by McGregor.
Kenneth looks to make amends for his missed header with a 25-yard drive but his effort never worries McGregor and sails over the bar.
Dixon gets forward and launches a ball at the far post to Swanson who beats Whittaker to the header but can't direct it on target, and while the header was admittedly tough, he might feel he could have done better.
Davis' ball in from the free-kick is cleared away by Gunning with Swanson looking to break quickly leaving only Edu standing his ground to cut off the threat.
Bocanegra looks to play in Naismith who is well marked by Kenneth and the Dundee man clears before Bocanegra goes down after a foul by Watson.
Kenneth gets a yard on Goain and from five yards amazingly heads wide with the goal gaping. Rangers under real pressure currently.
It's backs against the wall as Lafferty is back to clear Flood's ball in as the hosts win another corner.
Davis' frustration boils over and he lunges in viciously on Swanson and picks it up a yellow card from Calum Murray.
The pace of Rangers has slowed down which the hosts seem to have picked up on as Swanson nicks the ball off Davis and regains possession.
Lafferty loses the aerial battle with Gunning and is penalised as the Gers striker remain frustrated early on.
Rankin is linking up play superbly for the hosts as he searches out Swanson who is muscled off by Goain before Swanson goes down in the penalty area and is booked for a dive.
After some initial Dundee United pressure, Rangers look to regain their composure after clearing the corner but Davis' pass is misdirected and ends up in the arms of Pernis.
Rangers' shape is causing the hosts all kinds of problems as the play loose passes and are closed down well, before Flood picks it up and again has a drive at McGregor with the Rangers keeper standing tall to tip the ball over.
Wylde does brilliantly to skip past Kenneth and cross into the near post but Naismith amazingly clears the ball behind goal from 10 yards as Rangers spurn a great chance to go in front.
Kirk Broadfoot finds Naismith on the edge of the area and he is backwards header is on target but comfortable for Dusan Pernis to save, before Lafferty is played in by Davis who from ten yards drives straight at Pernis. Good pressure from Rangers.
Robertson heads away as Gregg Wylde drifts a second corner in before a foul is given aginst Whittaker on Keith Watson.
Ortiz takes on Dixon on the right and skips past the left-back before crossing into the near post with Gunning getting across Naismith to clear.
Good play by Dundee United with Danny Swanson and John Rankin linking up well as the hosts look to settle after a strong Rangers start.
Davis again shows his range of delivery as he crosses in from 25 yards but Lafferty and Naismith find themselves in each other's way before the former ends up heading behind goal.
Rangers break after Kirk Broadfoot's clearance and a yellow card is shown to Garry Kenneth after hacking down Davis on the break.
The hosts' corner is cleared behind by Dorin Goain and Flood whips the second set piece back in with Scott Robertson blasting a shot away, earning a third corner with a deflection off Davis.
Rangers have started fairly well as they knock the ball around their defence but Lauri Dalla Valle capitalises on a lapse pass from Carlos Bocanegra and plays in Flood who shoots agonisingly wide after a deflection.
Whittaker finally gets a cross in from the right but it sails over Kyle Lafferty and Steven Naismith and rolls out for a goal kick.
Rangers' point of attack remains on the right side, with Whittaker and Ortiz again combining but Dixon stands strong to concede another throw-in.
Ortiz is getting plenty of touches early on as he races down the right with Paul Dixon tracking well and forcing a corner.
Juanma Ortiz picks it up on the right but his cross is cleared at the near post by Gavin Gunning as John Rankin looks to break before a timely interception by Edu breaks it up.
Steven Davis and Maurice Edu link up smoothly to intercept a through ball from Willo Flood as Rangers look to control the early stages and settle on the ball.
Luke Thompson has high hopes for Rangers' new Aussie import, writing: "I'm hoping Mckay gets a run. Rangers should win I'm from Australia but Mckay was a good player to watch in our a league."
SPL Champions Rangers are favourites to emerge victorious this afternoon according to Sky Bet, being priced short at 4/7. A win for Peter Houston's Dundee United side is at 5/1 while a draw at Tannadice Park is avaliable at 11/4.
Dundee Utd: Pernis, Watson, Kenneth, Gunning, Dixon, Russell, Flood, Robertson, Rankin, Swanson, Dalla Valle. Subs: McCallum, Douglas, Armstrong, Mackay-Steven, Allan, Dow, Marsh-Brown.
Rangers: McGregor, Whittaker, Goian, Bocanegra, Broadfoot, Juanma Ortiz, Davis, Edu, Wylde, Naismith, Lafferty. Subs: Alexander, McCulloch, Fleck, Healy, McKay, Kerkar, Perry.