Rangers beat Hearts 3-2 to go on top

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src=' ' class='caption'> Glasgow Rangers moved to the top of the Scottish Premier League (SPL) for the first time in over a year on Sunday.

Updated: February 25, 2007 10:04 IST
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Glasgow, Scotland:

Glasgow Rangers moved to the top of the Scottish Premier League (SPL) for the first time in over a year on Sunday after they beat Hearts 3-2 in a thrilling game at Ibrox. Nacho Novo scored twice in a man-of-the match performance, to take his league tally to 11 goals, and help the Gers overtake archrivals Celtic in the SPL standings. Paul Hartley tucked away the spot kick for his fourth league goal of the season and Hearts went 1-0 ahead. However, their lead only lasted until first half injury time, when Rangers finally converted one of several chances. Zurab Khizanishvili's deep cross was headed on to Peter Lovenkrands. Under pressure The Dane's cross into was accidentally tapped in at the far post by Hearts defender Jamie McAllister, who was under pressure from Fernando Ricksen. Hearts continued to show no fear of their illustrious hosts at the start of the second half, but they were unable to prevent Rangers taking the lead in the 56th minute. Khizanishvili delivered a measured pass into the Hearts box and Nacho Novo coolly lifted the ball over goalkeeper Craig Gordon to put Rangers 2-1 ahead. Hearts courageously fought back and equalised in the 66th minute - Mark de Vries stooping to head Joe Hamill's cross past 'keeper Stefan Klos and levelling matters at 2-2. A fantastic reaction save from Gordon in the 78th minute kept Hearts in the game. Defender Marvin Andrews headed a Ricksen corner kick on target, but Gordon dived to his left and managed to get a hand to the ball. His efforts were in vain, though, as man of the match Novo grabbed the winning goal in the 81st minute. Hearts' defence was pulled out of position as Stephen Hughes headed into the penalty area and the substitutes' hanging cross fell to an unmarked Novo, who headed in his 11th goal of the season and wrapped up a 3-2 win.

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