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Rangers have ‘set up next week’ with Champions League draw – Michael Beale

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Michael Beale insists Rangers’ Champions League hopes should not be written off following the 2-2 play-off draw with PSV Eindhoven at Ibrox.

Gers attacker Abdallah Sima curled in a terrific first-leg opener just before the interval but the Dutch side levelled through midfielder Ibrahim Sangare just after the hour mark.

As play raced from end to end, substitute Rabbi Matondo scored his first Light Blues goal in the 76th minute before PSV captain Luuk de Jong levelled with a header four minutes later, and the match ended in a repeat of last year’s score at the same stage of the competition.

The two sides drew 2-2 at Ibrox before Rangers scrambled a 1-0 win in Eindhoven and Beale remains confident of progress in the Netherlands next Wednesday night.

Asked if lightning can strike twice against the Dutch side, Beale said: “I think so, yes, of course. Naturally we will go across and be extremely positive.

“There were moments of tonight’s game when I thought we were very good.

“I thought we scored two good goals and all night we caused them problems defensively. There were areas of the game we’d want to improve on, for sure. But everything is to play for.

“We wanted to set up next week and we’ve done that.

“Tonight when we were struggling, we fought for each other. We ran for each other, we problem-solved on the pitch.

“This new group are learning very quickly that big nights like tonight bring us together.

“I don’t want anybody to underestimate us next week because it’s in this club to go put this performance on.

“We’ll have our thousands of fans travelling over there and as a team we’re going there to get this job done and we will give it everything we can.

“I think the tie is evenly set. I don’t think them and their coach are travelling home thinking ‘this is a job done’.

“They will know how hard physically that game was, at the end it looked like they had one or two bumps and bruises as well. It is finely poised.

“I think the two penalty boxes are going to be decisive. It’s important you play well between them but the most important thing is you take your chances when they come.”

PSV boss Peter Bosz was left with “mixed feelings” but is confident of finishing the tie next week.

He said: “I am never afraid of anything. I always think ‘go for it’.

“Even if I was there last season (when Rangers won), my mentality would be that this season we are going to make it.

“I felt we would be dominating here and they would play the counter-attack real well and really fast.

“That is how they scored their second goal. They had the energy of the crowd.

“We have to play a lot better in the return or we will not make it through. What do we need to do? Score more goals and don’t let stupid goals go in against us.”

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