Ally McCOIST insists Rangers must move on from the loss of Steven Naismith and focus on finding other ways to win games following their first Clydesdale Bank Premier League defeat of the season at Kilmarnock.
Manuel Pascali grabbed the only goal of the game at Rugby Park yesterday to end Rangers’ run of 14 consecutive wins on the road.
The 1-0 reverse followed last week’s goalless draw against St Johnstone at Ibrox, with the slump coming after key player Naismith was ruled out for the rest of the season with cruciate ligament damage sustained a month ago.
McCoist said: “Any team in the country would miss Naismith. But there is no use sitting here saying we are missing Naismith without doing something about it. We have to win games other ways.”
Sone Aluko made his Rangers debut from the start, despite a lack of match action since his contract with Aberdeen expired in the summer, and defender Ross Perry believes the winger can provide the vital spark needed in the absence of Naismith once fully match-sharp.
He said: “He’s been on trial for the last couple of weeks and he has been a real breath of fresh air. He’s something different to what we’ve got.
“Maybe with it being his first game in a while he was a bit tired towards the end but I’m sure he will be able to give us a lot. He has definitely shown that he’s got the capability to make things happen in the game.
Perry was drafted into the starting line-up after Carlos Bocanegra picked up a knock in training, with the young centre-half making only his fourth appearance of the season.
Meanwhile, Killie hero Pascali revealed how he assumed his header would be ruled offside until he spotted that Aluko had actually played him onside.
He said: “I thought I would score just for fun and to have a laugh.
“I thought I was 12 metres offside but then I saw Aluko was running. They signed him so he was there just for me!
“I don’t want to be too romantic but when you’re a kid you dream about beating Rangers or Celtic and scoring. I’m a really happy man.”