Clement urges Rangers fans to get behind team against Kilmarnock

Rangers are licking their wounds following the 2-1 defeat at Celtic Park on Saturday.

Philippe Clement wants the fans to get behind Rangers against Kilmarnock SNS Group

Philippe Clement wants to see the backing of the Rangers fans in their “crucial” game against Kilmarnock at Ibrox on Tuesday.

The Light Blues are licking their wounds following the 2-1 defeat at Celtic Park on Saturday which was played in front of home supporters only due to a ticket dispute between the two clubs.

It was a first defeat for Clement in 17 games since taking over from Michael Beale in October and it leaves the Gers eight points behind cinch Premiership leaders Celtic with two games in hand.

Clement is looking forward to a packed and enthusiastic Ibrox in the final match before the winter break.

The Belgian boss said: “Yeah it’s crucial. I also expect our fans to support the team, to push the team from the first second to the last second.

“That’s because we’ve come out of a very good period where the players have shown a lot.

“Also on Saturday, if you look only at the result you need to be disappointed but not about the performance.

“So they are doing the things that supporters expect. They’re making the shirt really dirty by giving everything and going full out every time.

“So we will do that one more time on Tuesday.

“And I expect to see the fans behind the team from the first second to the last.”

Gers skipper James Tavernier scored a terrific free-kick in the 88th minute at Celtic Park to make it a nervy ending for the Scottish champions, who led through terrific goals from Paulo Bernardo and Kyogo Furuhashi, with Rangers defender Leon Balogun sent off for denying Daizen Maeda a clear goalscoring opportunity.

While the performances of defender Dujon Sterling, again playing out of position in midfield, and young winger Ross McCausland, were put to Clement as positives in the defeat, the former Genk, Club Brugge and Monaco boss preferred to look at his squad in the round.

He said: “You guys have picked out Dujon and Ross. But it’s a difficult thing for me because I need to pick out a lot of names.

“I didn’t see one player who didn’t fight. I didn’t see one player who didn’t show quality in a lot of moments. Yes, there were mistakes made but I’m really happy with the way this team is reacting.

“I’m really happy with the way this team is growing and we need to continue.

“This needs to give us more hunger. I’ve said it the last few weeks. Maybe I’ve said it too much.

“Now the most interesting thing for me is to see after a disappointment, a moment where you are not happy, and how they react.

“They showed it on Saturday because going 2-0 behind and going down to 10 in a strange situation where your supporters are not in allowed in the stadium, and showing that character.

“I think they sent a good message. But I think they need to show a strong message on Tuesday too.”

Portuguese attacker Fabio Silva, who signed on loan until the end of the season from Wolves, will be available for selection but Clement said: “We will have to see about the availability of players.

“I need to see also after every game what the situation is with the players. So we will see.”

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