Match report: Dons beaten 3-0 on night to forget at Ibrox

Derek McInnes protests, right.

Aberdeen were beaten 3-0 by Rangers on a disappointing evening in Govan.

The Gers rushed out of the blocks and caught the Reds cold at Ibrox.

First half strikes from James Tavernier and Carlos Pena had them in control before Tavernier added another in the second period with a miserable evening for the Red Army being completed with Ryan Christie being sent off.

Dons boss made one change to the side that beat Kilmarnock 3-1 at Rugby Park on Sunday. Kari Arnason returned to the side with Gary Mackay-Steven dropping to the bench.

This meant the Reds used a back three of Arnason, Anthony O’Connor and Scott McKenna with Shay Logan and Andrew Considine used as wing-backs.

In the first minute Rangers were nearly ahead when Tavernier got free on the right and his low cross ball was just beyond the sliding Josh Windass at the back post.

Only six minutes into the game the hosts were given a questionable penalty by referee Andrew Dallas. A cross into the area was headed away by Graeme Shinnie and dropped towards Jason Holt, Greg Tansey went in, it was a 50-50 and Tansey appeared to get a touch on the ball but Dallas pointed to the spot.

Tavernier stepped up and struck it down the middle past Joe Lewis.

On 20 minutes Lewis tipped Pena’s 25 yard strike over the bar.

The Dons first moment of menace was seconds later as Kenny McLean played a superb ball down the inside left channel for May to chase.

He was quicker than Bruno Alves to it and tried to chip the onrushing Wes Foderingham but the goalie got a touch to get it behind for a corner which Arnason headed wide.

On 25 minutes Windass had the ball in the net for the Gers but he was flagged offside.

But just two minutes later the ball was in the net again and this time it did count.

Aberdeen were exposed down the right and Holt was able to burst clear, Arnason was dragged across to cover which left Pena free in the middle and he knocked home the cutback from eight yards.

The Dons almost pulled one back soon after when Christie’s free-kick from the right caused a scramble in the home six-yard box but somehow it was hacked away.

On 34 minutes Lewis made a fine save to keep it at 2-0. A good reverse ball from Pena slipped in Tavernier on the right of the area but Lewis smothered the effort at his near post.

Three minutes later May was close again for Aberdeen. A well-worked passing move culminated in Shinnie working the ball out to Considine on the left side of the area.

His measured low ball found May at the near post who poked an effort goal-wards from eight yards but it flashed just wide.

Gary Mackay-Steven was introduced two minutes before half-time for Tansey and with his first touch Mackay-Steven nearly scored  – and he was also denied a clear penalty.

Mackay-Steven was played in behind Tavernier and as he was about to shoot the back-tracking full-back tripped Mackay-Steven from behind meaning the winger sent his shot wide.

It was a stonewall penalty but Dallas decided not to give it with Mackay-Steven booked for complaining.

The second half was far more even with the Reds enjoying more possession. Chances though were at a premium Danny Wilson’s touch onto a Windass corner was easy for Lewis at his near post and then Christie shot over from long range.

Just after the hour May was nearly presented with a chance when keeper Foderingham mis-controlled a back pass, but the goalie recovered just in time to clear.

Seconds later Christie’s low shot from the edge of the box was well held by Foderingham.

But with 20 minutes to go the game was killed as a contest when Rangers got their third.

Windass, who was threat all evening, crossed from the right flank and Tavernier was there to touch it home at the near post from close range.

With six minutes left things got even worse when Christie was sent off after getting a second booking for a foul on Ross McCrorie, his first yellow card came on 57 minutes for an off the ball shove on Holt and it means he will now miss Sunday’s game against Rangers at Pittodrie.

Rangers: Wes Foderingham, James Tavernier, Declan John, Danny Wilson, Ryan Jack, Kenny Miller (Eduardo Herrera 84), Josh Windass (Ryan Hardie 89), Bruno Alves, Jason Holt, Carlos Pena (Daniel Candeias 68), Ross McCrorie.

Subs not used: Jak Alnwick, Eduardo Herrera, Lee Hodson, Niko Kranjcar, David Bates.

Aberdeen: Joe Lewis, Shay Logan, Anthony O’Connor, Kari Arnason (Greg Stewart 78), Scott McKenna, Andy Considine, Greg Tansey (Gary Mackay-Steven 43 (Adam Rooney 83), Graeme, Shinnie, Kenny McLean, Ryan Christie, Stevie May.

Subs not used: Mark Reynolds, Adam Rooney, Nicky Maynard, Dominic Ball, Danny Rogers.