Rangers have the hardest draw possible in the playoff round of the Champions after the winners of our tussle with Union Saint were given the winners of French giants Monaco v Dutch masters PSV.
After some good fortune in getting a modest Belgian side in the third round, should Rangers negotiate that stage they will face a massively stiff challenge in the playoffs, and by some distance the toughest tie since the club was last in the Champions League in 2010.
Make no mistake, this is a completely different level to Malmo – they were streetwise, but Rangers were deeply naïve and Malmo’s shortcomings were exposed when they got to the group.
But Monaco and PSV are on a different level to Malmo and will provide the toughest challenge Rangers could have asked for at this level, assuming, that is, we manage to get past the tricky opponent that is Union Saint.
We can probably reveal now that while some of us on Ibrox Noise were praying for PSV in that round, some of us wanted to avoid them or indeed Monaco entirely and get Kiev or Graz.
That will not happen and as such, to get that £40M prize, we’ll have to do it the hard way.
Monaco were third last season, PSV were a marginal second. Both teams are extremely strong and in a recent friendly, PSV ripped apart Calvin Bassey’s Ajax while Monaco slumped to defeats against Porto and Joe Aribo’s Southampton.
But in the competitive ring, the rules change.
And Rangers will need to bring their a-game to get to the group stage.