JAMES TAVERNIER has heard all the criticism, read all the comments and blocked both out. There were times when it related to Connor Goldson rather than himself, though.

Tavernier, as well as anyone, knows what it is like to come under unfriendly fire from his own support at Ibrox.

And the Rangers captain never had doubt that Goldson would follow his example and answer his doubters this term.

Two goals at Parkhead on Saturday were the finest moments of Goldson's campaign, but the Englishman has been a stalwart for some time now. He is one of the first names on Steven Gerrard's teamsheet and one of his most trusted players.

There have been times over the last two seasons where Gerrard's faith in Goldson has been questioned by fans. Now, though, those that remained to be convinced must surely be won over by the former Brighton Albion stopper.

Goldson's form throughout the opening months of the term has been excellent and Tavernier was always confident his vice-captain would produce when it mattered most.

He said: "I am delighted for him and to get two goals at Parkhead, as a centre-back, it is a great day for him. He should be proud of himself, he was outstanding.

"Every man was outstanding. I am delighted for him, he is a big asset for us attacking and defensively so I am really proud of him. I have always had great belief in Connor and I love having him beside me and playing next to him.

"He gives us that freedom, I feel I have got extra security when I go forward because I know he is going to cover me in those positions.

"He does get criticism but that is part of the package. He is the one that has to step on the field and he has been terrific for us since he has come here.

"This season he has been outstanding for us and long may that continue. It is the start of the season, it is a long season, and while we will enjoy it, we have got a big game on Thursday and we have to get our heads down."

That Europa League clash with Standard Liege will be another very different challenge for Rangers but it is one they are more than capable of passing as they head to Belgium in fine form.

The Gers were commanding and comfortable winners at Parkhead and Tavernier said: "I am very happy. We came here with a gameplan and I thought we executed it really well.

"We didn’t get on the ball like we should have in the second half but I thought we controlled it and limited their chances and we were disciplined in our defensive approach. I am proud of all the boys. Very proud.

"Like I have said this season, we had a good pre-season and we have had good time to work on ourselves, which we normally wouldn’t have.

"Credit to the management team for the time and effort they have put in defensively. We know from playing strong sides in the Europa how good we have been defensively but we want to take that into domestic football.

"We are showing great signs now but we still have loads of work to do to keep improving ourselves.

"That is the aim, you always want to improve as a team and a player and we look forward to doing that."