So, the Gers are back in action, and it’s back to Europe.
So, what’s our prediction this time?
Last time we played Porto, Porto set themselves up to be very aggressive, and we sat far too deep for the first half hour. Then we finally found our feet, and we could and perhaps should have won the game.
Tomorrow, reading between the lines, Porto’s requests for their fans to be patient could suggest the Dragao side are going to be more defensive, and to try to catch Rangers unaware.
However, this would be a major departure from the usual style they play, and their defensive line is really not the strongest part of the team.
However, last time when they tried an attacking formation, Porto were far too open at the back and we could easily have scored two or three goals from open play. So, they have a problem.
As seen two weeks ago, Porto are very midfield oriented, and they are also very skilled at the “clumsy foul”, the foul that stops an attack, but keeps the yellow card in the ref’s pocket.
They also are strong in the air, but it looked like their 85th minute equalizer last week, against Maritimo was a “hand-of-God” type headed goal. Hopefully, we have a good ref who can keep on top of their various tricks.
Overall, I don’t think this is going to be a pretty match to watch. Porto are going to try hard to disrupt our game, and to try to make us lose our shape. So, our fans are going to have to be at their best, and have the place jumping.
I think we can be confident that we can match them on the park. Tavernier, for example just needs to show he trusts the others around him, and let Ryan Jack concentrate on handling the midfield, while the likes of Morelos cause trouble at the other end. We also really need Katic at the back to handle the height their forwards get in the box. Otherwise, they will dominate the high balls.
Honestly, when they are not using opponent defenders as climbing poles, it looks like they have springs in the shoes.
Just like last time, this is going to be a very tough match, but the more we play these “so-called” wonder teams, the more ordinary they look.
If we go at them, with high-speed, confidence and energy, and the fans have Ibrox rocking, which is what we do every single week, we can grab all three points.
Gerrard hasn’t asked for it but let’s make Ibrox shake! This is our night, and after eight long years we deserve to party.
Let’s make Porto know they have been in a real football match.