Rangers given miserable statistical chance of Champions League knock-outs compared to Celtic
Rangers have been given just an eight per-cent chance of qualifying from their Champions League group after defeat to Ajax, according to a Super Computer.
The first group stage match the Gers had been involved in for over a decade ended in massive disappointment on Wednesday (7 September) after they were overwhelmed in Amsterdam and lost 4-0, leaving them with a big mountain to climb in a group also containing Napoli and Liverpool.
Of all the teams in the competition the Super Computer at FiveThirtyEight.com has given the club the fourth-lowest chance of reaching the knock-out stages, with only FC Copenhagen, Viktoria Plzen and Maccabi Haifa, the Danish, Czech and Israeli champions respectively, below them.
In contrast, while Celtic were beaten 3-0 at home by Real Madrid in their first game on this season’s European campaign, they are given a 40% chance of advancing, which is higher than the likes of Juventus, Inter, Shakhtar Donetsk, Sevilla and Marseille.
The situation in Europe comes after Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s side were also blown away 4-0 in the head-to-head meeting between the two last weekend at Celtic Park (3 September), leaving the manager with a huge job on his hands.
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It didn’t need to be spelt out to most Bears fans but that is a pretty stark indication of where the club suddenly finds itself in general, and in relation to their biggest rivals.
Advancing from the group of death was always going to be an uphill task, but the run to the Europa League final last year was as well and this side rode that wave to within a penalty shoot-out of winning the whole thing.
The gulf domestically is of more concern, since improvement enough to get a couple of memorable results in the Champions League might be acceptable after so long away.
But this is a club that needs to know it is going to be back again in the coming years, with more experience at the top table and ready to make a dent.
That is going to be all the more difficult if they are always chasing Celtic, which with a five point gap and a massive distance in goal difference already in the Scottish Premiership is currently the case.
Last season the title race was as good as lost once the 3-0 defeat at Parkhead put the Hoops top of the league, as an inability to adjust from continental games back to league fixtures undercut Rangers’ ability to put pressure on a chase.
Some tighter meetings late in the year, and a dramatic extra-time win in the Scottish Cup semi-final papered over the cracks, but the first Old Firm of the new season blew them open again so coaches, players, and the hierarchy have plenty to do to address that now and make sure the same doesn’t happen for a second season running.
In other Rangers news, two points is the best the club can hope for in the Champions League this season according to a talkSPORT pundit.