Jack Butland has dismissed the criticism that Connor Goldson and James Tavernier have received in the wake of Rangers’ defeat to Ross County and tipped the under-fire defensive duo to spearhead the Ibrox club’s push for the cinch Premiership trophy in the next six games.

Centre half Goldson and right back Tavernier were lambasted by supporters and pundits for their displays in the 3-2 loss at the Global Energy Stadium on Sunday – a shock result which handed Celtic the advantage in the Scottish title race.

However, former England internationalist Butland believes the flak which has flown in the direction of his countrymen has been completely unjustified and expressed confidence the pair will show what good footballers they are in the remaining matches – starting against Dundee at Dens Park this evening.

“You cannot play 50 plus games in a season without having a bit of tension here and there,” he said. “It’s part and parcel of football. We’ve been extremely good over a long, long period of time, we’ve got the best defensive record in the league for a reason.

“It’s now about reminding people of that. I have no concerns whatsoever who the backline might be. Whoever plays, we attack and defend as a team. People can point fingers all they like but as a group we are together and we believe in what we’re capable of doing.”

“Those guys (Goldson and Tavernier) have been a long time and have had to shoulder a lot of pressure. They’ve stepped up in big moments and I have no doubts they will do it again. That’s part of being at a club like this. It’s win or it’s the end of the world.

“What those guys and others who have been here a long time know is you need to deal with that. I have no doubt about those two in particular, the character, effort and how much it means to them to play for this club. I’m sure we will see it from now until the end of the season.

“People can say what they like but those boys wear their heart on their sleeve, work hard and have come up with massive moments for Rangers. I fully believe in both of them and everyone else.

“Tav is captain for a reason. Connor is vice-captain for a reason. They’ve experienced it and those experiences are hugely important for the rest of the group. Nobody else will get to see that. Whether they ever will get to see it is irrelevant, what matters is what they do in here and how they work. It’s a joy for me to be around them and learn from them.”

Rangers’ chances of winning the Premiership have been written off by many in the Scottish game in the days since their County reverse – but Butland is still confident that they can win all of their last six games and complete the second leg of a domestic treble.

“We know how many games are left and what we can do,” he said. “It’s about putting Sunday’s result behind us quick. We all know that. You don’t need to ask or look to see anyone’s reaction to see we weren’t happy. It’s about bouncing back.

“If we win every game we win the league. That’s the worst case scenario. If we have to grind results out here and things don’t go as well elsewhere then who knows what the pattern might be. We have to take each game at a time and win each one. Without a doubt, I believe we can do that.

“There’s always going to be critics even when things are going well. There’s always going to be people after you and wanting to bring you down. When you live in the goldfish bowl that is Glasgow then you can’t get away from it.

“One thing that happens as you get older, you learn how to deal with it and how to park the stuff that doesn’t matter. The opinions that do matter are within the group so you get used to the noise. Pressure is certainly something that comes with being here and I enjoy it.”

Butland was under pressure to perform when England manager Gareth Southgate came to watch the Old Firm game earlier this month – but he performed well for Rangers and believes he did his chances of getting called up for Euro 2024 no harm whatsoever with his display.

“I was quite pleased,” he said. “I was a little bit unsighted for the third goal. I set my standards high. Other than that, I felt like it was a tidy performance. In games like that where you’re under pressure, there’s moments you can look to and think you could have done better.

“But I’m proud of how I played and I’m proud of how I’ve played overall this season. I feel in a great place. The England stuff is fantastic. But what means more to me is what I do for Rangers Football Club.