Charlie Nicholas has given his prediction for Rangers’ first-leg clash with Bayer Leverkusen.
Steven Gerrard’s side have won just two of their last five games across all competitions, leaving little positivity ahead of the visit of the Bundesliga club. On the other hand, Leverkusen are bang in form and have lost just once across their last 13 fixtures across all competitions.
In his column for Sky Sports, Nicholas predicted that the Glasgow outfit will draw 2-2 with the Germans, claiming they have to be ‘all-in’ for the Europa League. He said: “As much as Rangers have been a disaster in the Scottish Premiership, people have forgotten how well they have done in this competition.”
“They put out Braga while picking up famous results against Porto and Feyenoord, who are all top sides. They have had a torrid run domestically, but there is no doubt that Steven Gerrard has done some wonderful stuff at Rangers. They have the Old Firm on Sunday but Rangers have to be all-in for the Europa League.” (Source: Sky Sports)
While Rangers have been disastrous in domestic competitions, you can’t deny the outfit have been in phenomenal form in the second-tier of European football. Famous results against the likes of Porto and Braga, over two legs, show they have the bottle and mental strength to grind out results, after all. The result against Portugal’s second-most successful club proves to even more extraordinary when you realise they had lost just one of their last 14 games before turning up to Ibrox.
In the win away to Braga, they limited the Liga Nos side to just one shot on target. And while they managed to produce a fantastic performance at the back, they were also lethal in attack, scoring a goal and having five shots on target from nine efforts, as per WhoScored.
Did you expect more from Steven Gerrard when he was appointed?
Form may not be on their side, however, history is as it shows the club have the ability to produce brilliant displays when they’re up to the occasion. It wouldn’t be too far-fetched to suggest that the Ibrox giants could even pull off a shock win tonight.
Rangers fans, do you agree with Nicholas’ optimism? Join the discussion below!
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