Hamilton were destroyed by Rangers at Ibrox as the home team ran riot in a staggering 8-0 victory, the biggest top-flight win at Ibrox since 1981.
Four were scored in the first half through Scott Arfield, Kemar Roofe and Joe Aribo. The second 45 allowed Roofe to get his second whilst Brandon Barker and James Tavernier also scored on a terrible day for Accies.
Manager Brian Rice knew this was going to be a tough test but he would have hoped for a much better start. They held on for 16 minutes before the floodgates opened, Arfield finishing off a Rangers move.
Two minutes later it was 2-0, Roofe heading a Tavernier cross into the net. Rangers were in a ruthless mood and added a third a minute after this header, a deflected Aribo effort making it 3-0.
Steven Gerrard’s side would add another before half-time, a superb Tavernier cross put into the box for Roofe, who turned provider as Aribo turned in another deflected effort.
In the second half it was damage limitation time for Hamilton who had been blown away in the opening 45 minutes by their superior hosts. But less than ten minutes had gone before a fifth was added.
A ball into the box bobbled its way to the backpost, Jermain Defoe unable to convert as Roofe bundled the ball home. Goal six was to come soon after, Barker finishing off a sweeping move.
Hakeem Odoffin gave away a penalty soon after and handed Tavernier the chance to make it seven just after the hour mark, which the Gers captain did. He’d add another before the clock hit 70 minutes with a rebounded effort from a Ryan Fulton save.
Regardless of opposition, Hamilton boss Rice will be furious after his men completely crumbled on a day Rangers were in killer form. Here are three things we learned.
Out of the frying pan
Hamilton hadn’t played in almost three weeks due to Covid-related call-offs prior to this and probably couldn’t have picked a worse fixture to come back to in terms of opponents. There was rust and more present, Rangers taking ruthless advantage.
The first-half was one to forget immediately and the second half was even worse as an embarrassing scoreline was left at their door. Matches against League Two opposition in Stranraer and Albion Rovers in the League Cup need strong wins to boost confidence after this dismal encounter.
Again Rice watched as Hamilton blew their chances inside a disastrous stage of the first half. In four of the last five games, Accies have conceded three goals during the first half.
It leaves them chasing a remarkable comeback and often it is too much. A tough run has Hamilton on a stretch of one win in eight games, some positive results needed urgently to lift spirits, especially after this drubbing.
Before this match, Rice managed to reinforce his squad, signing experienced defender Aaron Martin and winger Nathan Thomas. His squad is light and reinforcements were desperately needed.
Both were on the bench at Ibrox and Rice will be keen to integrate them quickly after another tough result.