Gio admits Rangers are out of their depth in the Champions League

Gio admits Rangers are out of their depth in the Champions League
Rangers's Dutch coach Giovanni Van Bronckhorst encourages his players from the touchline during the first round Group A UEFA Champions League football match between Ajax Amsterdam (NED) and Rangers (SCO) at The Johan Cruijff ArenA in Amsterdam on September 7, 2022. (Photo by MAURICE VAN STEEN / AFP) (Photo by MAURICE VAN STEEN/AFP via Getty Images)

Rangers’ shocker in the Champions League is going to lead to major soul-searching for the club and the fans, after not only were the players outclassed on the night, but they were borderline humiliated as well.

But the reality is this was completely predictable, and Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s admission post-match that we can’t compete at this level was quite the contrast to the bullish fare he’d been coming out with after PSV that the Champions League is where we want to be.

In fact, Gio has literally already thrown in the towel, by suggesting Rangers need £200M to compete in the UCL.

This isn’t exactly accurate – but he’s not wrong to hint that we’re out of our depth.

But it’s the fact the manager, from excitedly previewing the match as one to win, has gone to ‘white flag and we’ve lost’ that really shocks and surprises us. And doesn’t.

Steven Gerrard said exactly the same thing after Malmo – he attacked the board for a lack of funds, and said you need millions to compete at this level. Money he didn’t have at his disposal.

Well, Gio appears to be taking the same dig – from bullishness pre-match to reality biting him that his side is a mile off this level.

And they are.

Rangers are not a UCL-level team. We are a UEL-level team.

We can beat most teams at that level because few of them are putting in the shift they would in the Champions League. There’s just not the glory in the UEL.

And plus the calibre of sides in the UEL is a massive leap below what we see in the UCL – it’s just a different planet.

So yes, Gio is absolutely correct – Ibrox Noise has been telling you all for weeks that all we wanted was to get to the UCL. We literally had no interest in progress beyond that because the level is far higher than anything we’re used to.

Did we expect the capitulation in Holland that we got – score yes, effort, maybe not.

But what clearly dawned on the players inside the first 5 minutes (we’re sure you saw Goldson’s hapless swing at the ball at his first touch trying to even pass the ball, as he started to realise quickly how out his depth he was) was just how rookie they were to this level.

And the fear was obvious.

The same fear we saw in the UEL final – yes, you saw it too, our players looked scared in Seville, and were unable to come close to their usual game.

We saw that in Holland again, but far, far worse, and unlike in Spain, we paid for it clinically in 90 minutes by a team barely out of first gear.

Gio is correct, but it vindicates what Gerrard said.

Rangers (and Celtic) are completely out of their depth at this level.

But hey, at least we’ve been outstanding in the UEL the past 4 years.

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  1. There isn’t a game we play where we can’t compete. We may not succeed, we may get heavily beaten on occasion but that doesn’t mean we lie down and take it. Whatever happened to 11 v 11, or having an off night, or having a good night, or giving it a go. Celtic got well beaten by Real Madrid but at least they turned up and had a go.

  2. Ok Fair enough ,we are not good enough for CL ,however what is his excuse for hibs and another routine humping off them ? sorry it just doesnt wash anymore .
    Full points required at the sheepdome at weekend or we are out league at start of sept and he can go .along with his excuses .

  3. The ego’s have landed with an almighty crash, The Rangers were not just beaten, that was an embarrassing humiliation, the players hardly tried, Ajax cleaned up one mess of a team. I would say that Celtic were beaten but each of their players left the field with heads held high, celtic had chances and players gave everything.
    The Rangers looked like they expected to win by turning up, well it takes more than just being there to win games, two games in a row with complete humiliation.

  4. Do we take delight from the achievement from qualifying for the competition, then take the money and withdraw saying thanks very much but we’re not good enough!
    No! once qualified there should have been some player investment to improve the squad. We are better than letting a team play little triangles in our box working one two’s as they please. If that was the case Dortmund would have beaten us. The team is depleted, players in last 2 windows brought in, the majority have not added anything to the squad. What is the profiling of these players. The incoming players should be an improvement of what is there and moving on players that cannot even pass the ball to a teammate.

  5. Davie you can wrap it up anyway you want celtic 0 real madrid 3 at porkheid as well .WELL BEATEN .As per they refuse to accept beaten well and truly either refs or they done well in 3 nil defeat …??? lol.

    • Stuart, Celtic were well beaten by Real but how is it that their fans have accepted the result without too many complaints. It’s because their team, while being vastly inferior to Real Madrid, put some effort in and attacked Real to the point where they were unlucky not to score a couple of goals. It pains me to say that but it pains me even more to see us surrender so meekly.

  6. They got beat 3 nil robrob at home from a team playing in second gear most of it then simply moved up a few gears ,zero points ,nil poi ,zilch ,nothing ,fuck all .
    Their record in europe is shocking ,nuff said about them .
    We have been /are shocking and need to sort ourselves out ,we didnt do too badly in europe last season ….and i bet they werent pointing out how “good” we were ,way it should be .

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