Every word from Philippe Clement in post-match Q&A – fans, title hunt & Cyriel Dessers

Every word from Philippe Clement in post-match Q&A – fans, title hunt & Cyriel Dessers

Every word from Philippe Clement in post-match Q&A – fans, title hunt & Cyriel Dessers

Rangers manager Philippe Clement has hailed his squad after they trimmed the gap at top of the Scottish Premiership to a single goal with a win against Ross County.

Whilst the Ibrox manager’s team failed to score the necessary final goal which would’ve sent them to the top of the Scottish top flight table, a 10-point gap between the Old Firm from Steven Davis’ interim reign has been officially bridged.

In a show of utter domination, Rangers had a quite remarkable 43 shots in the match, 23 on target, but the team couldn’t muster better than a 3-1 victory over the Staggies at Ibrox.

Here’s everything Philippe Clement had to say in a post-match press conference as Rangers got the victory over Ross County.

Philippe Clement post-match press conference – Rangers v Ross County

Philippe, how did you see that one tonight?

“I think for sure in my period but I think all season it’s our game with most shots on target. What stays the most important in football; 23 they told me. I see a team growing week-by-week, month-by-month. Of course, you cannot become better game-after-game there is always something that can happen, you’re opponents are also different. But we had wave after wave of attacks, good possession play, good runs together, good tempo, good shot, but we had a goalkeeper also on the other side maybe had the evening of his life and a few times luck also on his side.

So it could’ve been much more today but of course as a manager you need to be happy, although I’m not so fast happy, with the 3-1 victory because I cannot ask more of my players than what they are doing now. I believe every supporter who was in the stadium today and four months ago would say, ‘What a difference’ for all of the players on the field. So this is the thing we need to accomplish now and the next few of months, to continue doing what we’ve been doing and then we’re going to take a lot of points. However, it is important to put in the effort on a daily basis.

Can you believe it was just three goals, given the number and quality of chances you produced tonight?

“Yeah, but I think our finishing was also not too awful when you have 23 shots on goal, but it’s only by centimetres. We can improve in that area, and we can still boost our level to be more exact, but those are the following phases. I believe the team has already taken a number of steps, including increased focus, which has been there for several weeks or months because it remains an important aspect of football. But you can’t ask much more of the players, where they are now, in the period we have  been working together.”

You stated that you will not look at the league table after this game.

“Everybody tells me so I know, that’s a little bit of a pity.”

How eager were you for the squad to achieve its next goal?

“Yeah, but it’s more about feeling the momentum, making wave after wave of attacks, playing good football, creating chances, and knowing the moment is still there to score the additional goal. And this has nothing to do with ranking; it is something I desire in every game. There may also be games that require you to control and stop the game at that point. It also depends on the game, the opponent, and what they’re doing,so it’s about doing the right things at the right moment.”

Fans appeared nervous at the stadium tonight, possibly due to the league position.

“I think they are really happy with the situation in the league.”

Sometimes they need to be a little more patient.

“Yes, it is correct, but I discussed it with the team before the game. That is normal; that is being a fan. Perhaps we should talk about it more with the supporters. It doesn’t help, but our athletes must be strong enough to remain focused on themselves and not grow worried. I didn’t have the feeling on the pitch that it happened today, but that is the danger. If you begin to live the  life of fans on the field then you will not reach your goals so we need to step out of that. I am really proud the way the players did that today because they never became nervous they only showed hunger and ambition for more and more and more.”

Do you believe the squad is in a solid position to win the title?

“It depends on how many points the other teams take. I am solely concerned with one thing: getting as many points as possible. And if we keep doing what we’ve been doing for the past four months, everyone else will have to work really hard to get there as well, which is exactly what we want to do. I’m here because, as I previously stated, I want to win rewards. We already have one, which is great, and we are ambitious for more, as is everyone in the dressing room. However, in the end, the only thing you have control over is yourself and the  points you take so we need to keep focused on that, that’s the only thing that’s important. Not only in one competition but in three and we are the only team in Scotland who is in three competitions, so that’s also interesting to do that in a really good way.”

Rangers FC v Livingston FC - Cinch Scottish Premiership


What did you think of Cyriel Dessers’ contribution?

“I believe it was a positive night for Cyriel, but I cannot say the same for any of the other players. You already know me; it’s extremely difficult for me to remove players after a game because I’ve seen so much excellence on the field today. Jack (Butland) is the only one on my squad who did not score today; everyone else created opportunities. I’ve stated it from the start: being a striker means far more to me than just scoring goals. They must also execute a variety of additional tasks for the team in order for it to improve. Cyriel is performing those things, as is Fabio (Silva), and  then the goals will follow, because they will come in the positions, but all the rest of the team also. I don’t care if it’s the striker who scores goals, or a midfielder or the defender.”

Do you have a sense of momentum after six consecutive wins?

“I already feel a lot of enthusiasm going into the winter break. I received the query ‘Is there now belief in the team?’ a few minutes ago. There has long been a belief among the team that you cannot win all of those games in a row, or play the game they did today. So, no, there is a lot of belief, confidence, hunger, and desire, and, most importantly, a lot of collectivity.

Because you see, we didn’t play with the same XI as a few days ago, but you don’t see a change in what we’re doing  a difference when players are coming in, everybody is doing their job for the team and that’s the way we need to do it until the end of the season.

That’s a really crucial one for me.

They all feel part of the story, they all had already their importance, all the team,

all the squad this season and we need to continue in that way.”

James Tavernier had three assists tonight; will the skipper continue to contribute significantly?

“Of course, he could have scored today with his quality. Tav, like Ridvan, was quite helpful to me today,

and Borna is also pushing in that direction. Dujon was suspended for today. It will be an intriguing few weeks.

It’s a good thing I don’t have too much hair now since I could end up looking different in a couple of weeks with all the things I need to consider.

So the squad is putting pressure on me, which I like.”



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