INTERIM Ross County manager Don Cowie questioned why there were 12 minutes of added-on time in the Dingwall club’s cinch Premiership match at Ibrox tonight after watching his side slump to a defeat to Rangers.

The Highlanders competed well with their Glasgow rivals in the rearranged league fixture and cancelled out Cyriel Dessers’ early opener in the first half when Simon Murray turned in an Eamon Brophy cross.

But Dessers put Philippe Clement’s side 2-1 ahead in the fifth minute of injury-time at the end of the opening 45 minutes – and then John Souttar headed in a James Tavernier cross in the 92nd minute to make it 3-1.

Cowie, who took over from Derek Adams on a temporary basis following the 5-0 loss to Motherwell at Fir Park, spoke to referee Alan Muir about why there was so much time added on following the final whistle as there had not been any major stoppages.

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“It was a difficult night,” he said. "I thought Rangers were excellent from the get go. They came out the traps really quick and it was a challenge for the players. The positive for me was that they stuck at it, playing against a level of team in great form. 

“Going into 90 minutes it’s 2-1 and that’s all I asked for before the game. I asked them to try to stay in it and that’s what they did. 

“We were fortunate because Rangers were that good. A club like Ross County need good fortune when we go to big grounds and we got that at times. Whether it was finishing or very good goalkeeping, we just have to move on from it in terms of what I want. I saw a team putting their bodies on the line to stop the ball going into the net. 

"It was a pleasing reaction to falling behind because I have been there before after conceding early. That can quickly spiral and for the first 20 minutes we struggled a bit. I thought it was a bit much, the pressure. But we managed to find out feet ever so slightly and we managed to get a goal which gives you a massive lift.

"The only disappointment was not going in at half-time at 1-1 and that would have given the group an added lift.”

Asked if he had been surprised that five minutes were added on at the end of the first half, Cowie said: “I was, yes. I asked that question. It was the same in the second half as well, an extra 12 minutes in total. But we know that is football now and we just have to see it out."