JACK Ross has denied that Hibernian centre backs Ryan Porteous and Paul Hanlon were lucky to escape with bookings for their challenges on Rangers forwards Alfredo Morelos and Ianis Hagi at Easter Road today.

Ross’s opposite number Steven Gerrard was unhappy that match official Don Robertson only showed Porteous and Hanlon yellow cards for fouls on his players in the first-half of a Premiership match his side drew 2-2.

However, the Hibs manager, whose side remain three points behind their Ibrox rivals in the top flight table, denied that his defensive duo had been guilty of serious foul play and were fortunate to remain on the park.

Asked if they had overstepped the mark, he said: "No. I can't answer it any more clearly than that. No.”

Asked if he thought that Hanlon should have been shown a red card by referee Robertson, Ross replied: "I haven't watched it back yet, but I certainly didn't think so at the time."

He continued: "I was a wee bit more concerned about the fact that cautions were getting dished out quite quickly, in a short period of time in general.

“But I never thought it would be a worry for us as the game went on. Ryan's matured and he's in a good place as well. Paul's sensible and experienced enough. So it probably shows what I think of them, the fact that it never really concerned me. "

Ross, whose team travel to Parkhead this weekend to play champions Celtic, was impressed by how his team fought back to earn a draw after surrendering the lead and falling 2-1 down in the second-half.

“We’ll not celebrate drawing the game,” he said. “We genuinely wanted to win the game today and believed we could do so.

“The motivation for us was to go joint top of the table. That was a huge one. However, we were playing against a very good team today. Their performances have shown that. And they are a hard team to play against, in possession.

“So for my players to show what they did in different sides of the game, and to take something from the game, was very pleasing. I was really, really proud of what they did today.”

Ross added: “In all aspects of the game we went toe-to-toe with Rangers. And they are obviously going to be up there at the end of the season.

“That’s because we’re a good side with good players. I just remind the players constantly of that. I think they’ve grown in belief with every passing game.

“And we’re going to need that again at Parkhead next week. But, if we produce similar aspects of our game, there’s no reason why we can’t go and take something from that match as well.”