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Rangers 1-3 St Johnstone: Mark Warburton hopes his players learn a lesson

Mark Warburton: Rangers boss watching his team lose to St Johnstone
Image: Mark Warburton: Rangers boss watching his team lose to St Johnstone

Rangers boss Mark Warburton conceded his team were punished for slackness in the 3-1 Scottish League Cup reverse to St Johnstone at Ibrox.

Saints cruised into the quarter-finals of the competition with goals from Murray Davidson, Simon Lappin and Michael O'Halloran.

The Scottish Premiership side could have been in a more comfortable position with Lappin and Steven MacLean coming close to further goals, before James Tavernier grabbed a late goal back for Rangers.

Confidence was high at Ibrox with Warburton's team sweeping aside opponents in the Championship and Petrofac Training Cup with ease, but Saints were well organised and tactically superior as they took advantage of their opponents.

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Former Brentford boss Warburton said: "I thought we were sloppy in the first half. We were two down at half-time and you can't give a goal away straight after half-time.

"After that the reaction was good but we have to learn from the first half.

"We had one bad half of football early in the season at Brentford and we referred back to that every single week - if we drop our standards that will happen. That could be our first half here.

"That feeling in there now, we don't want that again. We had a 10-minute discussion about that, it is how we deal with it. But I think you will agree we kept on playing, probing and trying to play the right way."

St Johnstone boss Tommy Wright was delighted by his team's cohesion as they earned their first away win of the season.

"I am delighted. It is nice to win a cup tie and put in a performance like we did," Wright said.

"We fully deserved it. Possibly we could have had a third goal before half-time with Steven MacLean's chance but I am really pleased with the way the players applied themselves.

"We came with a plan and limited them to very few clear-cut chances.

"We defended more like we can defend when we had to. Hopefully that will give us confidence to go on a run."

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