EXCLUSIVE: Rangers legend Durrant backs Sandaza goal-fest

RANGERS coach Ian Durrant today backed Francisco Sandaza to go on a scoring spree now he has finally ended his goal drought.

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Ian Durrant expects Francisco Sandaza to score many more goals now
Ian Durrant expects Francisco Sandaza to score many more goals now

Sandaza netted the only goal of the game in the Irn-Bru Third Division clash with Peterhead up at Balmoor Stadium.

It was the first time the Spanish striker has been on target since he struck in a 5-1 win over East Stirlingshire at Ibrox way back on August 18.

And it was only the second goal the 28-year-old, who spent three months out with a broken cheekbone last year, has bagged since joining the Gers in the summer.

But Light Blues great Durrant reckons the hitman, who had gone nine games without getting his name on the scoresheet, will get many more.

He said: "Francisco has done fantastically well for us since returning from injury. We always know we will get a good shift off Frankie. But he is a forward and he needs to score goals. Until yesterday, he had not had any luck in that area. But it had not been for the want of trying.

"His workrate and application have been faultless. We have all been willing the ball to go into the back of the net whenever he has had a scoring chance.

"We spoke to him during the week there and we told him: 'When it clicks it clicks'. I am glad that has happened sooner rather than later.

"The crowd has been fantastic with him even though he hasn't been scoring goals and I think that has helped him a lot. Now he has got in on the goals I am sure many more will come."

Sandaza suffered another face injury in the second half of his team's narrow 1-0 win and had to be replaced by Barrie McKay.

Club medical staff will find out this week if he has broken his nose and will need to spend any further time on the sidelines.

But Durrant reckons he could be an invaluable player to have in the William Hill Scottish Cup fifth round match against Dundee United at Tannadice on Saturday week.

He said: "There are a few interesting games coming up for us now, a few tough away games to look forward to. The experienced boys will be called upon in them and it would be good to have Francisco." Referee Mike Tumilty booked four Peterhead players and sent one – striker Rory McAllister – off in what was another physical encounter for Ally McCoist's men.

Sandaza believes Rangers' players need more protection from the match officials if they are to avoid picking up more serious injuries in the future.

He said: "Maybe the referees should watch the tackles more. They tackle us hard in the Third Division. You get it at every level, but at this level even more."

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