Rangers picked up a precious point away from Ibrox in their crucial Europa League game against Sparta on Thursday night.
The Gers produced a resilient display in the first half and had Jack Butland to thank for making some brilliant saves. The Daily Record (27 October, page 51) has delivered the player ratings for the Beers, and they are quite spot-on with their assessment.
Three players have managed 9/10 performances and four players have got 7/10 ratings. Scott Wright who replaced Cantwell in the second half managed only 2/10, while Cyriel Dessers has picked up a 5/10 rating after a dismal performance.
The Scottish daily newspaper was full of praise for Gers’ defender Ben Davies. The former Liverpool centre-back has produced a “heroic shift” on the night.
The Daily Record wrote: “Put in a heroic shift as he got his head to every cross while putting body on the line. Goalline clearance from Vitik was crucial.”
Rangers stay third in Group C with four points, level with Sparta, after Real Betis defeated Aris Limassol 1-0 in Group C’s other game.
In the first half, the Beers hardly managed to construct a meaningful attack and they had to defend a lot. Butland made a double save thwarting Veljko Birmancevic and Qazim Laci while Davies was equally brilliant at the back.
John Lundstram also made a last-ditch intervention to prevent Martin Vitik from tapping into a certain goal. In the second half, Abdallah Sima looked lively in an unfamiliar left wing-back position and the Gers made some good moves towards the end.
It was a grueling night for the travelling fans. Rangers soaked pressure and stayed resolute throughout. In the final 20 minutes or so, they opened up a bit and gave the fans something to cheer about. While they struggled to flex their creative muscle, the Bears did really well to frustrate the home side.