Rangers returned to the top of the Scottish Premiership this afternoon following a 3-1 win over Hibs at Ibrox.

The Rangers Review breaks down the game’s big talking points below.

Back to the top at Ibrox

Playing their first domestic game since a shock defeat against Motherwell, Rangers did the business against Hibs in a 3-1 win. It wasn’t by any means the most assured performance and in all truth, Philippe Clement’s team still look short of a few key starters that are beginning to repopulate the matchday squad. Having missed a first-half penalty James Tavernier would open the scoring when he struck a volley in vengeance midway through the first 45. Scott Wright had converted his saved penalty before VAR ruled against it on the basis of encroachment, Hibs levelled after a sharp move in transition before the break but Cyriel Dessers would have the final say in front of the Bromloan with a towering header to restore the lead. At times this game was nervy but Rabbi Matondo’s superb late strike from the bench, dancing infield before finding the far corner, sent Ibrox into hysteria. It was a gig moment for the returning winger from the bench to seal the win.


READ MORE: Analysing Rabbi Matondo with his ex-coach - 'This a Premier League profile'


Why did Rangers look weak in transition?

Hibs, under Nick Montgomery, are not a side that’ll sit back and only soak up pressure, often keeping wingers high and taking risks when building play. This factor and a change in Rangers’ tactical set-up led to a more open game than Clement would’ve hoped for after his side went ahead. The home side overall looked like a team missing a few key starters, as was the case. Simply, Rangers needed more forward movement from their full-backs to provide width than usual, leaving greater recovery distance when possession was turned over. An early warning was handed when Silva lost the ball on the left and the visitors went up the other end to try a shot. On that same side before the whistle, as Barisic ran infield while Rangers surrendered the ball, Hibs managed to exploit the gap behind a covering Lundstram to level proceedings through Myziane with Souttar guilty of allowing Youan inside too easily. Hibs knew, when they pushed Cadden forward on an overlap and dragged Silva backwards, that the home side probably lacked the pace to punish that space in response. 

Dessers does it again

Earlier this week the Rangers Review wrote at length earlier in the week, Desesrs is something of an enigma. If looking at only the data pre-match, which shows his 0.8 goals/90 in the league was the best since Clement arrived at the club in October. What’s more on the basis of shots alone the striker’s overperformed his xG by around a goal. And yet the Nigerian forward never seems to distill confidence in the support and yet, his strike on the stroke of half-time was Dessers’ 12th in 14 league starts under the Belgian boss - an emphatic header following Todd Cantwell’s dinked cross from the right. 11 of 13 goals scored by Dessers in the league have been one-touch finishes. There are weaknesses to his game as a second-half miss following Tavernier's cutback showed, but, as today also demonstrated, over the next month or two Rangers will need his strengths which the numbers also testify too.


READ MORE: Is Dessers any good despite SPFL's best goalscoring numbers?


Cantwell provides and Sima's back

It took Todd Cantwell time to settle under Philippe Clement and just when the wheels started to turn at the beginning of this year an injury followed. As the 26-year-old was keen to point out on press duties this week, the No.10 slot is where you’ll see the best of him, rather than when restricted to the confines of a wing. Clement’s football has benefited from Cantwell’s willingness to take risks and provide knit together at times a more direct style of play. While this showing wasn’t Cantwell at his best, the creative midfielder provided the moment his team needed before the break to create Dessers’ second with a clever seam run and delicate delivery. Ahead of next week's Old Firm when the No.13 will be required to perform, 60 minutes here was a positive for Clement. Abdallah Sima's substitute appearance, three months on from his last appearance, can play a significant part in the title race.