Revenge was sweet for Rangers winger Ryan Kent after he played a key role in his side’s 4-2 win against Aberdeen at Pittodrie.
Kent set-up two of his side’s four goals in the six-goal thriller as the Gers beat the Dons for the first time this season to claim all three points.
A delighted Kent said: “It sends out a big message. Aberdeen have got the better of us on a couple of occasion this season and we felt as if we owed them one.
“It was a very difficult night. We were terrific in the first half and looked dangerous every time we were on the ball.
“In the second half it was very difficult. I felt dangerous and could make something happen in the first half but I had to defend a lot more in the second half.”
Jermain Defoe came off the bench to score the fourth goal in injury-time to finally end Aberdeen’s hopes of getting something from the game.
The former Bournemouth striker was sent on after team-mate Alfredo Morelos was sent-off for the third time against the Dons this season while Aberdeen defender Scott McKenna was also dismissed for retaliating to the Colombian’s stamp.
Defoe said: “They put us under a lot of pressure in the second half. It’s a difficult place to come so it was nice to win the game and it’s a vital three points.
“I didn’t see what happened. The crowd here make it difficult for the opposition b ut we kept our heads and got the goal.
“At half-time the manager said don’t concede but if we do we make sure we win the game and we managed to do that.”
Rangers manager Steven Gerrard was delighted to finally beat the Dons for the first time but he insists he does not expect the challenge from Derek McInnes’s side to falter anytime soon.
He said: “It’s a huge win for us and both sets of players played their part in a fantastic match.
“We deserved to win the game but Aberdeen were good. They pushed us all the way and credit to them too but I have to praise my players.
“Before the game we felt we were under pressure as we hadn’t beaten Aberdeen but we delivered a top-class performance.
“This was a three point game. We’ve won, we’re delighted we’ve won but Aberdeen are not going away, Kilmarnock are not going away, Hearts are getting stronger. We will enjoy tonight but we have to keep going.
“Aberdeen are a good team. They are physical, tall, big and you can see the profile of the team is really strong. They’re in good form and sometimes teams cannot stand up to them but tonight we stood up to them all over the pitch and we looked really dangerous at times.”
The Gers boss was also disappointed to see Morelos incur his third dismissal against the Dons this season.
He said: “For him to go to the next level or to improve he will have to channel his aggression. I haven’t analysed the incident so I can’t say whether Scott McKenna or Alfredo deserved to go. They had a terrific battle up until then.
“I’m doing everything in my powers to help the kid grow as a footballer and a person.
“I won’t take the physical side away from him as he will get bullied, but to get to the next level and for people to trust him he has to channel it in the right manner.”