Football

Breaking Down Rangers’ Europa League Group With Porto, Feyenoord and Young Boys

Breaking Down Rangers’ Europa League Group With Porto, Feyenoord and Young Boys

Rangers now know they will face Porto, Feyenoord and Young Boys in their Europa League group.

Steven Gerrard’s side booked their place in the group stage with a 1-0 victory over Legia Warsaw at Ibrox last night.

Alfredo Morelos gave them a late winner in that game to seal a 1-0 aggregate victory and fans would have woken up this morning desperate to find out who they will play in the next few months.

Here’s what we’ve found interesting from the group:

1 – Porto Are Favourites

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As a Pot 1 team, Porto are seen as one of the top sides of the competition due to their performances in Europe over recent years – and rightly so. They are in the competition after losing out in Champions League qualifying at the hands of Krasnodar and you’d have to assume that means they aren’t quite as strong as they were when going to the quarter-finals of last season’s competition. But they’re nonetheless strong and have some talent in the form of Pepe, Moussa Marega and Ze Luis that Rangers should be well aware of.

2 – Feyenoord Are Intriguing

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Feyenoord seemed like they were back as one of Netherlands’ most dominant teams when they won the Eredivisie in the 2016/17 season. They did that under Giovanni van Bronckhorst with players like Nicolai Jorgensen, Dirk Kuyt and Eljero Elia – but only Jorgensen is still at the club. Van Bronckhorst was replaced by Jaap Stam earlier this year and it was a third-placed finish in Eredivisie for the team last season. It’s safe to say Ajax and PSV are back as the dominant teams in Netherlands, but Feyenoord are a team with plenty of history and should represent a brilliant away day for the Rangers fans.

3 – Young Boys Are Champions

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Young Boys come into the group as the only league champions – and convincing ones at that. They held a 20-point advantage over Basel when they won the Swiss league last season and therefore qualified for the Champions League. But Crvena Zvezda knocked them out of qualifying on away goals and forced them into the Europa League. While Porto may be seen as obvious favourites due to their pedigree over recent years, maybe Young Boys have an outside shot of doing something special in the group.

4 – Rangers Came Through More Qualifying Rounds Than the Rest

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Can Rangers take confidence from the fact they navigated their way through four qualifying ties to get here? For Porto, it was one Champions League tie. It was the same for Young Boys. Feyenoord only had to get through two rounds. Maybe that added experience of playing European football so early in the season will actually help Rangers.

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