Is the Europa League a distraction this season for Rangers?

Is the Europa League a distraction this season for Rangers?
GLASGOW, SCOTLAND - AUGUST 22: Rangers manager Michael Beale is seen during the UEFA Champions Qualifying Play-Off: First Leg between Rangers v PSV Eindhoven at Ibrox Stadium on August 22, 2023 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

So now attention turns to Real Betis this week. It’s an odd one – as much as any of you, Ibrox Noise are passionate Rangers fans, and yet we can’t deny a complete disinterest in this match, in this Europa League campaign indeed.

Celtic are the ones who nicked (again) Rangers’ hard-earned default Champions League group spot, and this time we slipped up on the playoff hurdle.

Since promotion, since Steven Gerrard took over, Rangers have an almost perfect qualifying record in European competition, but the two blots on this copybook were Malmo, and of course, now PSV.

So we’re consigned to the Thursday Cup, which doesn’t excite us at all at Ibrox Noise – but equally, while it’s easy to say ‘it’s our level’ – is it?

Stevie and Gio’s Rangers punched above their weight in the Europa League/UCL qualifiers, defying odds. But those teams had a lot of big hitters in their ranks – Kent, Colak, Morelos, Jack, Arfield, Hagi.. there were strong players there which delivered in Europe still above their weight.

Now the team is a lot weaker than those days, misfiring constantly and struggling at the rear – facing a quality side like Real Betis doesn’t really appeal to us at all, in truth. They’re 9th in LaLiga which is miles above where Rangers are, and if we want a confidence-boosting win, Betis aren’t the team to be facing, despite the stuff about injuries.

Europe, this season, is a total distraction. We wanted Champions League for the money, that was it. It’s way beyond our means, much too high for our level, and it was just the financial boost we wanted.

Europa League does reward too, but you need to win matches to make it worth your time, and we can’t see this Rangers doing a lot of that against quality continental opposition.

Ibrox Noise’s Derek will have a tactical analysis of Betis and Rangers’ chances against them this week, but at a basic level, the league is and was the priority this season.

And we have to throw everything into winning the thing – which already looks very difficult under Michael Beale’s patchy and fragmented Rangers team as it is without other things on our plate.

Meaning Europe is a bit of a distraction we could probably do without, really. Money, yes, nice, we won’t say no, but we don’t have the manager or resources this season to deliver at that level at all.

Sorry if this is fatalistic.

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  1. I agree just not good enough for europe,get out it asap and get back to basics,i dont want to lose another 3 points due to midweek euro games players getting injured tired ect fuck that,lets secure the league this season🫡

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