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Although Rangers narrowly missed out on Europa League silverware last term and recovered to claim the Scottish Cup, the four-point gap between them and title winners Celtic felt seismic by the end of the campaign. The Hoops bought well and in quantity as Ange Postecoglou successfully reshaped his squad, so the Gers are reliant upon smart transfer business to close the distance.
Aaron Ramsey may not have delivered enough in his short stay in Glasgow and Leon Balogun had fallen down the pecking order, but Joe Aribo and Calvin Bassey are big losses. However, significant fees for those last two players have enabled them to strengthen elsewhere.
John Souttar was already signed up and there’s been further strengthening at centre-back with Ben Davies coming in from Liverpool, while left-back Ridvan Yilmaz should provide welcome competition to Borna Barisic.
The attack is bolstered out wide with the exciting Rabbi Matondo and experienced Tom Lawrence, while striker Antonio Colak bagged 19 goals out on loan at Swedish outfit Malmo last term and should prove an upgrade on the departed Cedric Itten.
Rangers To Win To Nil
The visitors will be confident heading into this fixture having ended last season well with five wins from six unbeaten league games, and their record in this fixture has been watertight.
Livingston last tasted victory over Rangers back in 2018, with the latter since registering 13 wins from 14 unbeaten games, while recording a mammoth 12 clean sheets. On the road alone, Rangers have won six of the last seven, with four of them coming by a minimum two-goal margin.
Livingston’s campaign is already underway as they beat Albion Rovers, Cove Rangers and Kelty Hearts in the League Cup, though they did suffer defeat against Inverness. David Martindale’s men also finished last term well, going unbeaten across their last six games and registering three victories. However, with none of those encounters against a team that finished fifth or higher in the table last term, the gulf in quality should tell here.
Giovanni van Bronckhorst has seen his side perform admirably in pre-season, recording victories over Blackpool and West Ham, before a narrow 2-1 defeat to Tottenham as Heung-min Son twice set up Harry Kane for the comeback.
Livingston can’t boast players of that calibre, and a Rangers backline still featuring the likes of James Tavernier and Connor Goldson should have enough about them to secure a clean sheet here.
RANGERS TO WIN TO NIL
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