Calvin Bassey, Joe Aribo, Amad Diallo, Fashion Sakala, Nnamdi Oforborh and Leon Balogun have won the 2021-22 Scottish Cup with Rangers.
The Gers silenced Hearts 2-0 after extra time in a keenly contested final played at Hampden Park in Glasgow with Ryan Jack and Scott Wright finding the net.
Still hurt by their painful Europa League defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt in the Europa League final, Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s men took on Hearts aiming to end the season on a high.
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As it proved to be an explosive showdown, Peter Haring was cautioned as early as the third minute for a dangerous tackle on Nigeria international Calvin Bassey.
Notwithstanding, they had the first chance at goal with Ellis Reco Simms hitting the post from a yard out following a poor clearance by Leon Balogun.
Van Bronckhorst’s side bounced back from their slumber to dominate ball possession as well as cause moments of panic for Robbie Neilson’s men.
The Ibrox Stadium giants felt William Collum should have awarded them a penalty when Bassey went down under the challenge of Haring.
Twelve minutes in the second half, goalkeeper Craig Gordon was forced to make a big save to deny Ryan Kent from finding the net.
Even with numerous goalscoring opportunities created, both teams were unable to cancel out one another after 90 minutes, prompting the fixture to proceed to extra time.
There, Van Bronckhorst and his squad got their acts right with quick-fire strikes from super-subs Jack and Wright separating both clubs.
While Balogun and Bassey played all 120 minutes, Aribo – who was named in the starting XI was subbed off for Zambia international Sakala in the 106th minute.
After featuring for 63 minutes, Cote d’Ivoire international Diallo was replaced by Scott Wright, whereas, former Nigeria youth international Oforborh was not dressed for action.
With this triumph, Rangers have now won the Scottish Cup on 34 occasions.
“It took a lot out of us but we had a good recovery and I have a lot of confidence in my team and their ability to regroup and recover from big games,” manager Van Bronckhorst told media before the final.
“Wednesday was a big game for us, we didn't have the outcome we wanted but overall it was a good experience for my team to play in such a big game.
“It is part of the game that when you are in finals you have come so far and even though you are very close to achieving silverware the disappointment will be very big.”