Rangers challenged to take European form into domestic games

Rangers v Borussia Dortmund – UEFA Europa League – Playoff – Second Leg – Ibrox Stadium
(Image credit: Jane Barlow)

Giovanni van Bronckhorst wants Rangers to take their stunning European form into Sunday’s home cinch Premiership game against Motherwell.

The Scottish champions drew 2-2 with Bundesliga giants Borussia Dortmund at Ibrox on Thursday night to secure a terrific 6-4 aggregate win and reach the last 16 of the Europa League.

Friday’s draw paired Rangers with Red Star Belgrade in the next round, but Van Bronckhorst has turned his attention back to the league where they trail Old Firm rivals Celtic by three points.

He said: “Of course, you want to play this way in every game you play in.

“We go back now to the domestic league so we cannot afford another points drop, we have to have the same level of play.

“Yesterday we created good chances to score, we scored twice and that’s our aim for Sunday also. In the end, we have to have the three points.

“Of course, there is a switch to the league but we are here to win games and to win silverware so it doesn’t matter on the competition, you have to be there from the first minutes.

“I think the transition will be easy. Of course, it’s another dynamic. If you’re in the last 16 in Europe there is a lot of media coverage and interest.

“But in the end, it’s just a football game on the pitch against 11 players. If you approach a game like that it will be very easy.”

The former Gers player admitted the events of Thursday night amid a red-hot Ibrox atmosphere was among the best of his time in the game.

The former Holland international said: “We knew it was going to be a big draw against Dortmund and if you look back to the two games I think we were excellent.

“We knew it was going to be hard but I think we had good moments in both games. Also moments where we had to dig deep.

“In the end, I think it is a historic win against one of the big teams in Europe so it’s very satisfying for all of us. The performance we had was immense.”

Asked for his thoughts on the Red Star tie, the Dutchman said: “They were first in the group in the Europa League, so it means they’re a strong team.

“We will prepare our team as always to give them as much information as possible and do everything to make sure we progress into the next round.”

Defender Filip Helander is available after dropping out of squad for Thursday as he has not been registered for Europe.

On-loan Juventus midfielder Aaron Ramsey missed out again against Dortmund with a knock but Van Bronckhorst said: “Today he was on the pitch. We have to see his progress day by day. But there has definitely not been a setback.

“It was a demanding game yesterday so we will probably need to assess players tomorrow who played and prepare for the game on Sunday.”

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