Andy Walker and Kris Boyd have finally agreed on one thing – that Rangers are becoming a fearsome side on the continental stage.
The Light Blues enjoyed another European night to remember on Thursday after a stirring comeback against Royal Antwerp handed them a 4-3 win and an advantage to take back to Ibrox for next week’s second leg.
These nights are becoming a regular occurrence and that is testament to just how far this side has come under Steven Gerrard and his coaching staff who have transformed these players into high-level performers.
Speaking on the Sky Sports ‘Scottish Football Podcast’ [19/02/21] Walker and Boyd speculated that the Gers could be in for a lengthy run in this season’s Europa League knock-out campaign.
Walker was first to sing the praises, saying: “There is a level of maturity. I think they’ll go through and with the luck of the draw, who knows how far Rangers can go.”
Boyd lent his backing and said: “A lot of teams will look at Rangers and say ‘I don’t want them, I don’t want to play them’ and that’s a good thing for Rangers to have because we’ve seen before they have been written off with having no chance of getting anything out of the game.
“They can cause teams problems. They’ve got a lot of assets in there that a lot of teams from bigger leagues won’t want to face.”
He added: “There’s teams in there that Rangers will say ‘If we can get that little bit of luck of the draw…’. You just never know how far they can go.”
More than a match for most
Based on our performances this season and the level of competition left it would be remiss of anybody to rule Rangers out of a run to the latter stages, particularly given some of the first-leg results.
AC Milan, Napoli and Arsenal are just some of the so-called favourites who failed to win on Thursday which should act as a real source of inspiration for the Light Blues.
Most, if not all of the teams left in the competition are fallible and can be got at.
We have already proven to be serious competitors for Portuguese giants Benfica this season while we got the better of their rivals Porto last season, a side who beat Cristiano Ronaldo’s Juventus in the Champions League on Wednesday.
Defeat to Bayer Leverkusen in the last 16 was a tough pill to swallow last season as it felt like we never had the belief to take them all the way.
We certainly have that now and should be eyeing a quarter-final berth at the very least.
In other Rangers news, Antwerp boss makes bizarre dig at Light Blues after losing 4-3.