Steven Gerrard greets Ryan Kent for silencing & # 39; ridiculous & # 39; critics because offside rangers in the Europa League earn final-16 with victory over Braga
- Rangers are the first team to book their first book in the last 16 of the Europa League
- Steven Gerrard's side progressed with a total 4-2 win over Braga
- Ryan Kent scored the sole goal of the competition, because the Gers won the second stage 1-0
- His manager praised him for having delivered a great moment after being criticized
The shape of the £ 7 million winger has been scrutinized as the Ibrox side has struggled domestically, but his second half finish has provided a well-deserved success over the Portuguese form team.
And Gerrard offered a statement of support to Kent and insisted on an anti-aircraft gun aimed at the former Liverpool man is & # 39; ridiculous & # 39; been.
"But I'm really happy with him and I don't just judge him by numbers. I judge him about what he does for the team – in and out of possession.
"People don't give him the honor he deserves, in terms of the amount of running he does for us. But he came big for the team and scored the important goal.
& # 39; Hopefully this will put his trust in the world of good, because there will be times when people are not satisfied with him and it is a bit up and down. That is part of playing football at a top club.
& # 39; But some of the opinions I've read about Ryan lately are ridiculous. He is a top player. & # 39;
Ianis Hagi had seen a first-half penalty saved by Braga keeper Matheus, while Florian Kamberi missed a good chance before the break.
Kent had also been netted in that opening period and said: "I missed an easier opportunity in the first half, but the goal is just a bonus.
" The fact that we've been through is special for the football club, the fans and for ourselves and we have something to fight for.
& # 39; The boys know that the recent form has not been good enough and we expect better and demand more from ourselves.
& # 39; Busy apart from the competition, we did very well in Europe, so we just went outside and showed everyone what we are capable of.
"The fact that we are the underdogs in this competition means that there is less expectation and excitement in our game.
" We're going out and play with more freedom and I felt that we got what we deserved. "
It is the first time in nine years that Rangers have progressed so far in continental competition, with Gerrard honoring his entire team for implementing the game plan to perfection.
His decision to drop Nikola Katic in favor of George Edmundson was rewarded with a great disp lay of the 22-year-old Englishman (photo), who had not appeared in Europe since July last year.
He formed a solid partnership with more experienced compatriot Connor Goldson who stood in stark contrast to the misery defense of Sunday's 2-2 draw against St. Johnstone.
& # 39 "The cooperation of the two centerbacks wa is flawless," said the Rangers manager. "George was thrown in at the deep end, but there is a way to gain European experience.
" At some point, a manager must trust you to go inside, regardless of the challenge.
"He stepped up and he wanted it and he delivered with the help of Connor, who played as a captain, as a leader.
" He is someone who has been a stick since the weekend along with the rest of us, so bouncing back and posting that kind of performance was great.
& # 39; The rear five were excellent, shielded by the three in front of them.
& # 39; From a defense point of view, the game plan was supplied by them so that they deserve the honor for it. & # 39;
Rangers are the first team in tomorrow's final 16 tie, opening the possibility of meeting Celtic as Neil Lennon & # 39; s men watch FC Copenhagen tonight.
& # 39; Tonight it's about enjoying the win against Braga, & # 39; Gerrard added. "We will really look forward to the Friday draw and be proud of who we meet."
Braga : Magalhaes, Viana, Silva (Galeno 53), Carmo (Ruiz 65), Esgaio, Fransergio, Joao Palhinha (Novais 45), Sequeira, Trincao, Horta, Paulinho
Subs not used : Vitor Tormena , Tiago Sa, Andre Horta, Rui Fonte
Booked : Carmo, Esgaio
Rangers : McGregor, Tavernier, Goldson, Edmundson, Barisic Arfield , Davis, Jack, Hagi (Aribo 72), Kamberi (Ojo 78), Kent
Subs not used : Foderingham, Halliday, Kamara, Katic, Stewart
Booked : Kamberi
Referee : Andreas Ekberg
Braga vs Rangers (agg, 2-3), LIVE: Latest updates as goal of Steven Gerrard & # 39; s to defeat and book in the Europa League last-16
- to avoid Rangers travel to Braga for the second leg of their Europa League round-of-32 draw
Since the turn of the year, the Ibrox club has seen their season go into freefall and the high of a victory of the Old Company that has ignited a title race has quickly fallen apart.
Rangers are now 12 points lower Celtic and are confronted with a seasonal series of competitions.
They play Hearts in the Scottish Cup, still have to take on table-top players and also meet Braga in the second leg of their final 32 Europa League draw.
Prior to these crunch games, Sportsmail assesses the main problems that Gerrard has to deal with.
The Alfredo Morelos target drought
Morelos is Gerrard's most important player and has consistently delivered an end product for the team.
His form is an integral part of how Rangers are faring and the simple fact is that the Colombian was well on his way to a goal.
He failed to hit the second half of the shot in the Scottish Premiership since Boxing Day and succeeded in only one goal in his last seven games.
At its best, Morelos is an absolute handful of defenses that can never have a moment of peace.
But with teams that sit deep and frustrating Rangers, they need him to offer a head start that has not been there since his red card against Celtic.
The Old Firm victory in December saw him sent for diving in the 96th minute, followed by an unhelpful suspension.
Since the high point of that day, Morelos looks deprived of confidence and needs to regain shape if Rangers are to save their season.
Injury problems and selection problems
A number of supporters have criticized Gerrard's selections, both at the start of and during matches.
During the hugely disappointing 2-1 defeat of Kilmarnock this month, the manager chose to go into midfield with Scott Arfield and Ryan Jack.
Many fans thought Steven Davies should have strengthened the game and Glen Kamara, who enjoyed a brilliant season, was completely left out of the team.
CRUCIAL GAMES TO COME
Wednesday 26 vs Braga (A) – 3-2 on total in Europe League
Saturday, February 29 vs Hearts (A) – Scottish Cup Quarterfinals
March 15 vs Celtic (A) – Scottish Premiership
A warning must are added to the debate on selection if Rangers are affected by injuries to key figures.
Jack, James Tavernier, Filip Helander and Borna Barisic have all missed games since the winter break. Those are regulars from the first team and the team is poorly equipped to deal with their absence.
Tavernier was absent at the same time as Morelos and they missed not only his leadership, but also the quality of full-back.
Andy Halliday and Matt Polster are the backups and simply do not offer the necessary quality as coverage.
Ryan Kent doesn't look like a £ 7m player
It seems hard to blame too much on Kent's door, but Rangers has spent £ 7 million on the former Liverpool man .
That is a considerable release, especially for fans who still have the financial capitulation of their club fresh in their memory.
There have been glitters from the 23-year-old, including his wonderful first attempt at Celtic, but perhaps the responsibility on his shoulders is too much.
Gerrard believed that Kent could be the man to help Rangers shoot to another level when he pushed to the board to bring him in last summer.
He has managed only six goals in 24 games and none in the Europa League.
If he helped tee-up teammates, that would be a mitigating factor, but Kent has only one assist to his name throughout the season.
Gerrard makes Rangers defensively robust and it seemed on the basis for their title challenge in the first half of the campaign.
The team admitted only 11 in that period and would have a much better chance of winning games without pressure to score two or three goals per game.
In the last four games alone, Rangers sent six targets and have little chance of getting silverware if they cannot find a solution to close the alarming holes on the back.
The turn at Ibrox against Braga was heroic, but Gerrard knows that a similar defensive line-up will place his side from the Europa League in the return match.
Although Ianis Hagi van Genk's loan addition was a huge success, the club's overall recruitment could be questioned .
Sheyi Ojo has scored only once and has delivered three assists in the Scottish Premiership in 19 games.
The Liverpool borrower's output in the offensive third is poor, but he is not alone in that regard.
Brandon Barker was brought in from Manchester City in the summer, but only played a handful of matches, but scored once.
Another winger, Jordan Jones, came from Kilmarnock last summer, but has trouble again to get a place in the team.
It is not only the players who enter the club that fans have trouble with.
A number of supporters doubted the decision to give Jamie Murphy on loan to Burton Albion, especially as Morelos struggled for form.
Murphy scored five in seven for the League One club and perhaps Rangers would have been better served by keeping the experienced team ahead in the team.
Escape from the Sky Sports Ofcom sanction after incorrectly translated interview with Rangers & Alfredo Morelos … which led to a complaint from Celtic after subtitles accused club fans of racist abuse during December clash
- Celtic demanded answers from Sky Sports after a misinterpreted interview
- Subtitles attached to a Sky interview with Alfredo Morelos, Celtic wrongly accused fans of racist abuse during the Old Firm derby on December 29
- Air reporters were excluded from Celtic press conferences for a while
- Regulator Ofcom has now decided against a detailed probe about Sky Sports
The Parkhead club demanded answers from the broadcaster after subtitles attached to a Sky interview with the Sky Colombian, who spoke in Spanish, wrongly accused Celtic supporters of racist abuse at the two clubs' meeting December 29.
Sky reporters were excluded from Celtic press conferences for a while, while Ofcom considered a formal complaint.
However, the regulator has now ruled out a detailed probe because the incorrect translation was not broadcast on Sky & # 39; s televised channel on February 3.
Claiming that the matter was outside their remit, an Ofcom spokesperson: "We considered complaints about incorrect English subtitles in an interview on Sky Sports News.
" Because the part of the interview with the incorrect translation only being shown on Sky & # 39; s website and on-demand platforms, and not on its broadcast television channel, we have n the grounds to continue this matter under the broadcast code. & # 39;
Ofcom received 72 complaints about the case, including the formal complaint from Celtic who in the interview made a Sky apology for & # 39; inaccuracies & # 39; It was then removed from all platforms with a corrected version made available.
St Johnstone 2-2 Rangers: Stevie May comes too late to conquer a point for the saints because the title of visitors hopes for a new blow in the Scottish premiership
- St Johnstone stopped Rangers against a 2-2 draw in the Scottish Premiership on Sunday
- Callum Hendry scored after eight minutes to give the hosts the lead during the break
- Invaders Florian Kamberi and Joe Aribo shifted for Rangers in the second half
- Stevie May replied ten minutes from the time the Saints remained eighth, Gers second
Rangers avoided a third consecutive Scottish Prime Minister away defeat but dropped more points in the title race when Stevie May & # 39; s late leveler for St. Johnstone denied visitors three points at St. Johnstone.
Callum Hendry caused Rangers center back Nikola Katic problems from the start and capitalized on uncertain clearance of a long ball from the defender after eight minutes, pouncing to check with his chest in the penalty area and ride a composed finish under goalkeeper Allan McGregor and in the far corner of the net.
Another center half, Jamie McCart, had a remarkable opportunity to double the lead a little more than 15 minutes later, only to create half a shovel – volley wasted above the bar.
Rangers made b almost right through James Tavernier after goalkeeper Zander Clark flapped a cross seven minutes before the break, but McCart finally knew and Clark was then equal to a low shot by Alfredo Morelos in extra time.
Florian Kamberi replaced Andy Halliday at the break for the second half of which Rangers and their visiting fans knew it would be crucial to the remaining hope they had of catching leaders Celtic .
The substitute, introduced as Rangers switched to a 4-4-2 formation, immediately made the desired impact five minutes after the restart with an excellent volley from the edge of the penalty area.
That was the first goal of the loaned Hibernian striker for Rangers or hi's nine so far this season, and he turned provider for the goal that put his side ahead 20 minutes later , cleverly turned on the left wing before moving, saw Joe Aribo's clever run on the nearby post and played in the midfielder for a quiet finish
If Rangers thought they had redeemed themselves, a more wobbling defense gave from Katic St Johnstone an equalizer ten minutes before time when Stevie May shot up close to McGregor after scrambling in the penalty area
Asked what Gerrard told him during the break, Kamberi told Sky Sports : & # 39; He didn't say much. He knows my qualities.
& # 39; I know why I am here and what I have to do when I get the chance. I can't be happy because we didn't get the three points. & # 39;
Danny Murphy and Steven Gerrard together won trophies as roommates in Liverpool and remained good friends.
This week the couple met for a fascinating discussion ranging from Jurgen Klopp to Gerrard & # 39; s function as Rangers manager and what he thinks of his successor as Captain, Jordan Henderson, abolition of the Premier League .
Danny Murphy: Stevie, when did you start to feel like becoming a manager? I wouldn't have said you did that in the early days. Even as a young captain you were not entirely at ease in holding meetings with the boys.
Steven Gerrard: The skipper's at 23 were out of my comfort zone. I loved leading the boys outside, but standing up for Jamie Carragher and Robbie Fowler, people I had seen, was hard. My first conversation with the Rangers players reminded me of that. I got through it but thought: & # 39; I need more practice. & # 39;
I had 100% predicted that Carra would be a manager. You probably, too. For me it changed in my thirties. I'd look at Brendan Rodgers and it seemed like he really enjoyed it. He suggested that I take my coaching badges.
DM: The best thing about you as a captain was that you would get the tickets!
SG: ] Half of the main stand was your destiny for Chester, I think.
DM: Gerard Houllier was a manager. Rafa [Benitez] and Jurgen [Klopp] have won the Champions League. I feel that Gerard is a little undervalued in laying the foundation.
SG: He has revolutionized the standards in Liverpool. He changed diets, training, introduced the first fitness coach and better staff.
DM: On mobile phones, all T-shirts wear the same color.
SG: The ketchup went. At that time we were "What is this?" I remember that Gerard went against Robbie and Incey [Paul Ince]. If you weren't willing to go with what he wanted, you were gone. He wanted to know exactly what I was doing outside the field.
He took me and my mum and dad out for dinner and I was left without illusions. The message to my parents was that he was not allowed to let him drink and carefully picked his mats. It had to be this way, otherwise I wouldn't be in Liverpool for long.
DM: He would put you in chat training. He would notice if you hadn't shaved. I hadn't had that with any other manager. Do you remember that we would leave our hotel room open in the hope that he would put his head in it and let us drop the team? It once worked: "Don't tell anyone, but be ready for tomorrow."
SG: We would jump through the room. We had all the tricks. Eat slowly in the canteen to be the last to be with the manager, hoping that he would give you a nod to the line-up.
When I think winning the FA Cup, League Cup and UEFA Cup in one season was incredible. Consider what a club like Spurs or Everton would give for that?
DM: We preferred to play in the middle, but someone had to perform the cemetery shift right or left.
SG: It was always good to God to pull on my inside when I played to the right. Not so much at 19 or 20, but Rafa did it to me later. I stayed professional but felt outside. I grew up in the middle of the field and enjoyed looking for the ball, probably too much.
It had to be his way. The message to my parents was that he was not allowed to let him drink and carefully choose his mats
DM: Did that influence the way you succeed? I think openness creates respect.
SG: If a player comes from the team, I will try to have a respectful conversation about why. It may not be a matter of dropping, but needing a blow after a series of games. When I played, nothing was said. You wondered where you were in the car. That way you can't always communicate. But if it's a big game and someone expected to play and be down, an explanation certainly helps.
DM: People will assume that you are the next Liverpool manager because of your status as a player.
SG: I understand why, because I was a captain for so long and a large part of the fan base would like me back in the club. But I'm smart enough to realize that first of all you have to be good enough. The owners must think that you are the right man.
Let's say Klopp wins the Premier League, Champions League and goes because he thinks he can't do anything anymore. They will not choose me if I am only the 20th best candidate.
If things go bad within a few months, you will be out of work. That is how brutal the work is.
And nobody asks if I think I need two or three somewhere else. If I had the chance [at Liverpool] I would like to be prepared. You cannot plan everything season by season. If things change in months, you would be out of work.
That's how cruel the work is, but you know it before you go inside. Jurgen Klopp told me that he had made two years of mistakes with the cameras, giving him confidence. I did that with the youth in Liverpool. I didn't think in Rangers that I had cracked it. Am I now ready for the Liverpool job? Maybe not.
DM: I know you want to try to win everything with Rangers, but fans should be happy with the past 20 months, closer to Celtic and a run in Europe.
SG: I am satisfied. We have improved the team, the stadium, the training field, the medical department and sports science. Clear progress has been made, but I am not behind the content.
I have to keep pushing this in every possible way. We are 10 points or so better off than last year, but that also applies to Celtic. It is still a huge challenge. It's hard to pursue something that is powerful and self-enhancing. Can we get there? That's the interesting thing. I have faith.
DM: From the outside you have replaced one goldfish bowl with another, Liverpool for Glasgow, with Los Angeles in the meantime.
SG: Liverpool and Glasgow have similarities, but it's different for me. I had to live with my family in Liverpool. It is my city. I go to schools, stores, up and down.
I went to America because I had been in Liverpool all my life and wanted a different experience. I didn't like the end in Liverpool either. Partly because of the Chelsea thing, which was so close to winning the competition, but also because it felt that they had offered me a one-year contract because I was Steven Gerrard and they did not want the fan's kickback. Deep inside, I thought they wanted me to go.
DM: This is how it looked. It happened with Frank Lampard in Chelsea. It happened to me in Fulham. We had the best season in the club's history and they gave me a contract. You feel it is time to leave.
I had a lump in my throat because Kenny was crying after our victory in the Champions League last year.
SG: That was the reality for me, but it still hurt. I didn't want to play for another team in this country, but I didn't want to stop playing. Would I have done things differently afterwards? Yes, because things have changed in Liverpool. If I had signed a year extension, I might have had the opportunity to play for Klopp, which would have been a different learning curve. But from a lifestyle point of view, and I was refreshing for the next challenge in my life, it was probably the right one.
DM: It was hard for Jordan Henderson to follow you as a Liverpool captain, but in the past two years I have thought "Wow". He will never be you, but he has become a great leader. I would not want to play against him. I think he is the first name in midfield England for Euro 2020.
SG: We both know that there are players who are "busy" with it every day . I appreciated Jordan's strength and fitness by training with him. Some players play for themselves, Jordan does the dirty running and struggles for second balls, 12 or 13 km Saturday and Wednesday, again and again. Teams cannot function at the Liverpool level without a cog like Jordan Henderson. He is clearly becoming a Premier League winner. I look at him and think: good for you.
He has that confidence now. He has lifted the European Cup above his head. I don't earn any credit, he did it all himself, but I remember a chat with Jordan in LA a while ago and he wasn't sure if he came or went to the club. I remember telling him not to give up Liverpool, I'll be fine. I knew what he had in it and that he would come there. You know with certain people.
DM: Where did you see the final victory of Champions League against Spurs?
SG: I went. It was the first time that I went to a final as a fan. I had done TV work during the 2018 final when they lost to Real Madrid, but I thought I would accept Liverpool's invitation this time, drink a nice glass of wine and go to Kenny [Dalglish] Rushy [Ian Rush] and all the staff would be
I had a lump in my throat because Kenny was crying next to me. I became more emotional because Kenny was crying instead of the result! It was great and there were a number of players from the end of my era. I knew the pain we had been through.
DM: You are celebrating a 40th birthday this year. Are we planning something for the big day, May 30?
SG: No mention, I see grays everywhere grays! I'll be with my family. My daughter does GCSE & # 39; s and her half-life falls exactly on my birthday. So, a real family celebration, no plans for football.
DM: I don't see many lines of concern. Must be the botox!
SG: You didn't see me a few weeks ago when we lost in Kilmarnock! I remember Rafa Benitez telling me as a manager to be a good actor. Put the face up. Sometimes you feel angry but be positive. If you are a manager, people will follow your example.
DM: Houllier went into a back room to collect his thoughts. Even if he was smoking, he would be calm for the camera.
SG: I need to get better at that.
DM: You were excited after defeating Celtic.
SG: I will never apologize for being authentic. I am passionate after a win. I don't think people from outside understand the pressure you have at the moment. I wonder if it was too much, but then I think Celtic defeated Aberdeen last weekend, and 11 players and Neil Lennon jump around and celebrate with the fans. I think it's absolutely fine.
There are still parts of me where I do things and think & I could have done something better & # 39 ;. And I don't think that will ever disappear.
DM: Self-analysis is good. For everyone. If you don't do it, you're arrogant. You are in your second season as a manager, Frank Lampard is in his second season. Funny how your careers connect so closely.
SG: I admire Frank for his bottle, which led Chelsea in the largest competition in the world during a transfer ban. I am proud of him as a former teammate.
There will of course be a comparison with me and Frank, because we were players at the time. Can we play together? Who was better? There is still an element in that, but the reality is that we are in two completely different jobs.
DM: I would like to see it become a top rivalry between managers for the next ten years 15 years.
SG: Me too. I'm sure Frank had the same thoughts. But I would also like to become a rival of Jose Mourinho. Even now I am a rival of Neil Lennon and Derek McInnes. I hope I have been involved in this game for a long time, but we have had a few bad years and I will sit next to you at Match of the Day.
DM: I said it before, I remember you dropped in team meetings in Liverpool. I can't imagine what you would think if one of your players were snoozing when you mentioned Rangers v Celtic.
SG: Let me put you there, our meetings at Liverpool could take 40 minutes. My meetings last eight to twelve minutes.
DM: However, it did not affect your performance.
SG: That's the key. If someone turns off in one of my team meetings and gets the winner against Celtic, I get a cushion for him! One thing will never change, players are still motivated by money and days off.
We had a bad training session after the players had taken a break, I threatened to limit the days off unless they stopped. The next session was the best we have ever had. It was like seeing Brazil.
DM: We cannot leave without mentioning Jurgen Klopp again. He is honest with his players. He warned them last weekend that Norwich was better than the league position suggested and that is why Liverpool respected them and won the game 1-0.
SG: He has this status. When he walks through a room, it is "Whoa". If he were your manager, you would think "I'm running here." This Liverpool team is monsters and it comes from him as soon as he arrives.
For the players, that level of respect for their manager in a modern dressing room is special. You can see that everyone is attuned, physically and mentally. Getting that from your players is a tough nut to crack. And I feel Liverpool is growing all over the world again.
Gary McAllister says Rangers will be forced to make Ianis Hagi & # 39; s move to Ibrox permanent if he stays alive until his star bills.
The Romanian played an important role in Steven Gerrard's side from two goals to beat Braga on Thursday in Ibrox, a result that gives them every chance to advance to the final 16 of the [19459006EuropaLeague.
On loan from the Belgian club Genk until the summer, Rangers assured the first refusal of the 21-year-old in case his parent club is open to break their ties with him.
With Hagi already a favorite of fans after Ibrox No. 2 McAllister is also a late winner against Hibernian and believes his impact so far indicates that the club's board is being asked to do everything necessary to extend its stay beyond the summer.
& # 39; If the boy continues to perform, then it is something we should look at, & he said.
& # 39; The manager has the final say, but he (Hagi) has impressed all of us and we want to sustain this young man and keep his confidence high. He quickly integrated with all players and staff, making him feel very welcome. He comes in with a smile that is always nice to see.
& # 39; He enjoys training and Glasgow – and is settling down quickly. He has an eye for a goal and a pass. He found the first 15 minutes against Hibs to be quite physical, but since then he has adapted really well.
& # 39; If you are a player on Thursday night and score a few goals for 50,000 fans singing your name, I think you'll enjoy it. & # 39;
Asked if the role that Hagi played on a classic European evening would increase the chances of a deal being closed, McAllister replied: & # 39; I would say that again is a huge positive. The way he has established himself is something that will predict well for the future. It was a bit of recruitment. & # 39;
Superstar father Gheorghe already believes his son is in the ideal club after watching his exploits from the Ibrox stands this week – and revealed that he is Ianis & # 39; discussed the future with Gerrard.
Ianis is fit, plays well and is happy & # 39 ;, said the former legend of Real Madrid and Barcelona. "He has clearly chosen the ideal team, the ideal club, and he is doing very well.
& # 39; I want to do Rangers well and congratulate them for having a have played a great game, they have a chance to qualify, but they are playing a very good team in Braga.
I don't have to tell Ianis anything, he knows what to do. I discussed it with Steven, but that's all I want to say about the night. & # 39;
Denying that he is tears of happiness about his son's performance, a proud Hagi senior added: & # 39; I didn't cry! The reason it looked like there were tears in my eyes is because it was very cold. & # 39;
The only drawback to an extraordinary victory from Rangers was the yellow card that Alfredo Morelos received for a different opinion, meaning that he will miss the return leg in Portugal on Wednesday.
Seized by disciplinary problems in the first season of Gerrard, the Colombian seemed to have repaired his ways before quickly conquering Motherwell and Celtic was fired.
Frustrated that hard lessons don't seem to have been, McAllister learned: & We will continue to follow him and squeeze his ear. These moments … he has to get them out of his game.
& # 39; It has happened before, it is a repeat offense. That is something we are constantly working on with him and it is also frustrating for us. But we have to hold him in his ear and try to improve this guy's record and not respond. & # 39;
Thursday's victory for Rangers, linked to the Celtic draw in Copenhagen, means Scotland is well on its way to having two teams participating in the 2021 Champions League qualifications 22.
& # 39; He has clearly chosen the ideal team & # 39 ;: the legendary striker Gheorghe Hagi rejoiced at the heroism of son Ianis for Rangers after being portrayed in tears after vital Europe League goals
- Gheorghe said he discussed his son's future with Rangers boss Steven Gerrard
- The ex-Barcelona icon was in Glasgow and had tears in his eyes when his son scored
- ] Rangers came from two goals and defeated Braga 3-2 in the first leg in the last 32
- On his return to Romania, Hagi said he was convinced that Ianis was in the right place
Gheorghe Hagi counts son Ianis at the ideal club after he had seen him become a Europa League hero in Ibrox, after his double against Braga.
And he revealed that he was discussing his son's future with Rangers boss Steven Gerrard.
The former Barcelona and Real Madrid icon was in Glasgow and was depicted with tears in his eyes while his son had an excellent double bag to stop an incredible Rangers fighter two goals to Braga to win the first 3-2 leg in the final 32 confrontation.
Former Romanian international Gheorghe (center) watched from the Ibrox gallery on Thursday
On his return to Romania, Hagi admitted that he was convinced that his son was in the right place after seeing his progress for himself.
He said: & Ianis is fit, plays well and is happy.
& # 39; He has clearly chosen the ideal team, the ideal club and he is doing very well.
& # 39; From now on I will show you how he does it for himself. He will be the one who speaks and we will simply enjoy how he is doing.
& I did not cry. The reason it looked like there were tears in my eyes is because it was very cold.
& # 39; I want to do Rangers well and congratulations on having played a great game.
& # 39; They have a chance to qualify, but they play against a very good team in Braga.
& # 39; I needn't say anything to Ianis, he knows what to do.
& # 39; Yes, I discussed it with Steven Gerrard before the game. That's all I want to say about the night. & # 39;
Rangers goal score hero Ianis Hagi reveals delight twice nets for legendary father Gheorghe who was on the stand at Ibrox for the first time
Ianis Hagi enjoyed a & # 39; great & # 39; night after inspiring Rangers to a glorious comeback victory over Braga for his superstar father.
Former Romanian international Gheorghe watched from the Ibrox stand while his 21-year-old son scored twice for Steven Gerrard's team during a stunning two-goal recovery to beat Portuguese visitors 3-2.
Position: attacking midfielder
Clubs: Farul Constanta, Sportul Studentesc, Steaua Bucuresti, Real Madrid, Brescia, Barcelona, Galataray [Barcelona]
Honors: 3x Romanian League, 2x Romanian Cup, 1x European Super Cup, 2x Spanish Super Cup, 4x Turkish League, 2x Turkish Cup, 1x UEFA Cup
] Ianis Hagi
Position: attacking midfielder
Current club: Rangers
Honors: Belgian Super Cup, Romanian Cup, Romanian Super Cup
Gheorghe became one of the best players in the world in the 1980s and 1990s. considered to be the greatest Romanian footballer of all time.
"My whole family was here so it's great," said Ianis, whose second of the night – a deflected free kick – sealed the victory over the first leg. "It is the first time they have been here and I am really proud that they were in the stands watching me. I am really happy and I think I made them proud. I spoke to my father before the game and he gave me some encouraging words. "We always speak for competitions because he helps me every time.
"I have joined Rangers for such nights. It's great – this is Ibrox, honey. You can't stop believing, even at 2-0. Amazing things happen at Ibrox. & # 39;
Gerrards men had looked down and out prior to Hagi's 67th minute intervention, with sub Joe Aribo drawing the sides with an excellent solo effort of 75 minutes before the Romanian brought the house down with the winner seven minutes later.
Hoping to inspire the team to continue from next week's return and reach the final 16 of the Europa League, added Hagi added: & # 39; My dream is to win trophies. This is my mentality and I want to win them every year. This is the mentality I have had since my childhood. I want to be a winner.
"At the start of every season I want to collect trophies. I cannot say that we will win the trophy this season, but we will certainly try well.
"But it's not over yet. This is only the first part. We also have to play well next week.
& # 39; Yes, it is an important victory, but it is still only the first leg and we have to think about St. Johnstone on Sunday.
& # 39; We play every three days, so we don't have time to reflect on a game. But we are confident that we can score in Portugal and make progress. & # 39;
Aribo was overjoyed to get off the couch and & # 39; make 2-2 at night.
He said: & # 39; It is the most important goal of my career so far.
& # 39; The gaffer said I had to be positive when I came and brought the ball to Braga so that they didn't have it in their own way.
& # 39; I have never scored such a & # 39; n goal before. What went through my mind?
"I just passed by the first man and then I couldn't go back. I just had to keep going and then I stood in front of the goal. "Fortunately I found the back of the net. The feeling when the ball hit the net was relief. I just buzzed that it had entered and that we were flat. & # 39;
After a stuttering start by Rangers until 2020, Aribo hopes that the victory can start the second half of the season on the Ibrox side.
& # 39; We needed one & night like that & # 39 ;, he said. "The boys are high. We are all absolutely ecstatic. I have never experienced anything like the atmosphere here tonight. It was like a 12th man. It was a wonderful feeling to have the support of the fans. Now we want to keep up the pace. & # 39;