Rangers return to Champions League after 12 years

by Oviri Kelvin, Sports Editor, Abuja

Giovanni van Bronckhorst has expressed satisfaction with his squad’s performance against PSV Eindhoven after they qualified for their first Champions League outing after 12 years.

The Gers’ boss said he was proud having shrugged off the Europa League loss to Eintracht Frankfurt last season’s final at Seville to lead Rangers to secure a 1-0 win against the Dutch club.

Both clubs in the first leg of the final qualifying round to the UEFA Champions League group stage, played a 2-2 draw at Ibrox last week before the Gers through Antonio Colak’s saver, secured a historic victory at Philips Stadium to ignite the crowd into ecstasy.

This historic win catapulted Rangers into the Champions League draws alongside other top European clubs from several top divisions.

Expressing his feelings after the victory on Wednesday, Gers’ boss said he understands how important playing in the Champions League means to the fans.

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“It is a very proud moment. I know what it means for the fans, for the club, to be playing at the highest level in Europe, competing with the best teams.

“I think it is a proud moment for all of us,” Giovanni van Bronckhorst added.

The Dutch gaffer stressed the importance of qualifying for the European tourney where top clubs converge to battle for the highly coveted diadem.

He noted he has experienced it as a player, and a coach and has been handed the opportunity to experience it with Rangers.

“I have played many games as a player, coached my team Feyenoord in the Champions League and now I have the opportunity to experience it with Rangers so it is a very proud moment,” he continued.

“You know where the club comes from, 10 years ago we were at the lowest point in history.

“And it took really hard work from everyone involved to build the club back again to the level that we are now so it is a proud moment for me to thank all the people who gave so much energy and time to build this club back up again.

“Seville was a proud moment for us to compete to try to win the club’s second European trophy in history and we have the same moment to be in the Champions League draw and compete against the best teams in Europe,” Giovanni van Bronckhorst added.

Recall that Rangers re-emerged from the bottom tier of Scottish football in 2012 after a financial meltdown and had battled back to the Europa League final last season, where they lost on penalties to Eintracht Frankfurt in Seville – and now back to the Champions League for the first time since 2010.

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