By Nick Ware

9th Dec, 2021 | 12:10pm

Michael Owen predicts Rangers clash v Lyon in Europa League

Michael Owen predicts Rangers to round off their Europa League group with a 2-0 defeat to Lyon tonight (9 December).

With just one game left, the Gers are three points ahead of third-placed Sparta Prague who cannot leapfrog them due to the Scottish champions’ superior head-to-head record.

Lyon are runaway leaders at the top and they will be desperate to record a victory that would see them claim maximum points in the group.

Writing in his BetVictor column on Thursday (9 December), Owen said: “Rangers have already sealed their place in the next round so I don’t think they will be taking this one too seriously.

“Lyon are a very good side and will go far in this competition, I’m going for a 2-0 Lyon win.”

Changes afoot?

This isn’t a game where victory is vital – indeed, whatever the Gers do tonight will make no difference to the group table, with the only change possible being Sparta Prague and Brondby swapping spots.

However, Giovanni van Bronckhorst will surely be desperate to continue the winning start he has made since returning to Rangers as manager last month (November).

The Gers have won all four games under his stewardship at an aggregate of 9-1.

But he will face the toughest reign of his tenure so far on Thursday as the Light Blues pitch up at Parc Olympique Lyonnais, an intimidating venue where the hosts have lost just once this season (1-2 v Reims, 1 December).

While wanting to keep up his side’s momentum, van Bronckhorst may elect to make a number of changes to his side to ensure his charges are fresh for a tricky trip to Tynecastle on Sunday (12 December), when they play Hearts.

Owen suggests the Gers won’t be taking the Lyon clash too seriously, and that could see the Dutch boss rest a few of his senior stars.

In other Rangers news, Alan Brazil aimed an Old Firm swipe at the Gers on Thursday in this live on-air Ibrox accusation.