Rangers have managed to get one foot in the next round of the Europa League Qualifying Stage of the competition with their comprehensive 4-2 victory over FC Midtjylland.
The trip to Denmark could have been a banana skin of a tie for Steven Gerrard’s side as the Herning-based outfit are already a handful of games into their domestic campaign and have been going well in the table – they sit second with a 100% record after four games and have conceded just the once.
However, Rangers managed to make the most of what was described as ‘sizzling’ and ‘a thriller’ in Scandanavia (Scottish Sun) and gave themselves a three-goal advantage inside the first 56 minutes of the game.
A goal from Alfredo Morelos before the half-time interval was followed up by a four-minute double salvo when Joe Aribo and Nikola Katic looked to put the tie beyond Midtjylland, although that hardly went to plan for the Gers.
Frank Ogochukwu reduced the deficit back to two just moments later before Sory Kaba got another just five minutes later. Scott Arfield was on hand to restore the gap to two goals with 20 minutes to go, which was ultimately enough for Gerrard’s side.
James Tavernier appeared to win plenty of plaudits for his performance by sections of the media, with The Daily Record and Rangers News both suggesting the right-back had been the inspirational force the Light Blues needed to overcome the tough challenge the Danes posed.
However, Katic also stood out and appeared to play a huge role in helping ensure the Glaswegians are in contention of being in the hat for the next stage – where they could potentially face Greek outfit Atromitos or Legia Warsaw of Poland (a match that is still firmly in the balance at 0-0).
The Croatian may have scored an outstanding volley to take the game away from Midtjylland, however his defensive contributions should not go without praise either.
Despite suffering a blow to the head when he clashed with team-mate Aribo just 23 seconds into the match, the enforcer worked well with Connor Goldson at the back as they dealt with everything the Danes threw at them (per The Daily Record).
The Scottish Sun gave him a solid seven rating, although their description of his play was rather modest, as they stated: “Caught on his heels at times but strong in the air and delivered a magnificent third goal for Gers with a powerful, low shot into the far corner. Wobbled second half. Booked…7“.
Although Rangers News did appear to sum things up rather perfectly with their rating. They wrote: “Really impressive performance from the Croatian. Must really be giving Gerrard a headache over his selection once Filip Helander is available. Took his goal really well and won pretty much header that came his way all night.”
If Katic continues to produce these types of performances, then Gerrard could have a positive headache to deal with imminently.
Rangers fans, how well do you think Katic performed? Let us know your thoughts by sharing them in the comments section below!
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