Rangers ace Nicky Clark takes confidence from draw with Alloa

Rangers Nicky Clark scores during the Scottish Championship match at Ibrox
Rangers Nicky Clark scores during the Scottish Championship match at Ibrox

Rangers striker Nicky Clark insists his side can take confidence from their 2-2 draw with Alloa when they bid to avoid another defeat to Hibernian on Sunday.

Clark’s headed double looked to have earned Rangers all three points at Ibrox on Tuesday night but a late goal from Liam Buchanan consigned them to a fifth-consecutive draw, and their second under Stuart McCall.

Any new-manager bounce is yet to take effect on their results and Rangers now travel to Easter Road on Sunday, scene of a 4-0 thrashing just after Christmas.

Rangers are 9-1 down on aggregate against Hibs in the Scottish Championship and have won just once in nine matches.

But Clark felt there was some creativity in the team from wide players Tom Walsh and David Templeton and agreed with McCall’s assessment that there were reasons for optimism.

The former Queen of the South forward said: “We are looking forward to it. We know it’s a massive game for us but every game is massive at this club.

“We can take a lot of positives out of Tuesday’s game. I thought we did well. Wee Walshy was brilliant again, Temps made a difference when he came on.

“So we will take confidence into Sunday.”

Rangers looked to have turned the game on its head going into the final quarter with Clark heading home a rebound following a short burst of intense pressure, before heading home Templeton’s cross in the 77th minute.

Dean Shiels came close from long range soon after but Buchanan broke in behind the home defence to level with eight minutes left and Rangers could not capitalise on some late chances.

Clark said: “It was great to get the two goals on a personal level but I would have much preferred to have got the three points.

“Once we got the second I thought we would have seen the game out and maybe have gone on to get a third. Shielsy had a great shot and it was tipped over the bar and at that stage we looked comfortable.”

McCall claimed Ibrox was one of the most difficult places to play for a home team.

Clark said: “It’s obviously a difficult place to play. It’s different from every other club, there are 40,000 here every week wanting you to do well. But as professionals you wouldn’t be here if the manager didn’t think we could handle that. We need to make sure we are professional.”