Glasgow (AFP) – Steven Gerrard hailed a “big win” for Rangers that kept alive their Scottish Premiership title hopes as Ryan Kent’s deflected effort 13 minutes from time ground out a 1-0 win at Ross County on Sunday.

Gerrard’s men had suffered a torrid week prior to their trip to the Highlands after losing 1-0 to Hearts in the Scottish Cup and by the same score at home to Hamilton in midweek in the league to drop 16 points adrift of Celtic.

Kent’s late strike reduced that deficit to 13 with a game in hand ahead of a potentially defining 10 days for Gerrard’s time at Rangers.

“It’s a big win and three points, something for us to build on,” said the former Liverpool captain.

Celtic travel to Ibrox next Sunday in between the two legs of Rangers’ Europa League last-16 tie with Bayer Leverkusen.

The visitors again failed to hit top form against a stubborn County defence at Dingwall but did at least end a run of three domestic games without a win on the road.

Kent has been criticised for failing to deliver on his £7 million ($9 million) price tag after a summer move from Liverpool, but he grabbed the winner late on as he cut inside onto his left foot and saw his shot deflect into the far corner.

“I don’t think we were fantastic from start to finish. We can certainly find higher levels and have looked better during the season,” added Gerrard.

“But we came up here to do a job after a difficult week. It was about getting the three points in any way, shape or form. Credit to the players for delivering that.”