Michael Beale insists Rangers have to stop making life difficult for themselves after coming from behind to beat 10-man Kilmarnock 3-2 at Rugby Park.
In a barnstorming Killie start to the cinch Premiership encounter, defender Chris Stokes headed in from a corner after six minutes but Rangers steadied and responded with goals from attackers Alfredo Morelos and Ryan Kent.
Kilmarnock winger Danny Armstrong was sent off by referee Kevin Clancy for picking up the second of two yellow cards for an elbow in the face of left-back Borna Barisic.
Morelos headed in his second from a Barisic cross in the 73rd minute but Killie pulled a goal back in the 85th minute through defender Joe Wright to ensure a nervy ending.
Beale, former assistant coach at Ibrox under Steven Gerrard, said: “It was never going to be a beauty contest because I don’t think the surface allows for that.
“Kilmarnock started on the front foot and we started the complete opposite. We didn’t heed the warnings the staff had given players and we found ourselves 1-0 down, with a mountain to climb. Again.
“The start is a concern because you know what’s coming your way here. You either stand up to it which we did after the first five minutes.
“There are things I can’t work out at the moment, things I’ve spoken about with the group. They’re as frustrated as me so we need to work away.
“We’ve played nearly as many games as we’ve had training sessions. So it’s about remembering some old themes from maybe 18 months ago, rocking up and playing games.
“The results are good. We just need to tighten the screws in one or two areas, because we’re scoring goals.
“We can’t keep on going behind and coming back. It’s all right saying it shows a fantastic mentality but we can’t keep doing it.”
Swansea head coach Russell Martin had reportedly claimed that Rangers had failed with a bid for forward Morgan Whittaker but Beale said: “Did he really? I didn’t know we had made a bid but if he said we did… I will talk about the player.
“They have recalled him for a reason. I would say that he was one of the better if not the best player in League One in the first half of the season and unless they have recalled him to play him, they must have recalled him to move him to a higher level.
“I think he is a good player but there is nothing more than that. And that is not what I have been told in-house.”
Killie boss Derek McInnes believes his side were “spooked” by the movement of Rangers at times.
He said: “I enjoyed the start and the end having a go. In the middle Rangers were better and their movement spooked us.
“On a tricky surface at times they moved the ball quite well. But the biggest thing was their movement at the top of the pitch and I thought Kent had a really good game and it spooked us.
“We didn’t defend the way I expected us to so I’m disappointed. Not long into the second half we went down to 10 men which made it difficult.
“I thought Danny was trying to stop himself but having seen it again I can see why the referee has given a yellow card.”
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