🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 Rangers pegged back twice in thriller at Benfica – www.bbc.co.uk

Source : Lien de l’article original
Date Heure de publication : 2024-03-07 23:12:04

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Tom Lawrence headed Rangers in front after just seven minutes

Rangers continued their impressive Europa League campaign with a first-leg draw against Benfica after twice leading in the last-16 tie in Lisbon.

Tom Lawrence set the visitors on their way with an inch-perfect header in their first real attack after superb work down the left by Mohamed Diomande to set up the Welshman.

Rangers managed the game well from there but as half-time approached they suffered a controversial concession when John Souttar headed against his own arm in the box. After a video assistant referee intervention, Angel Di Maria coolly slotted the penalty equaliser.

Rangers responded instantly and impressively. Fabio Silva played a ball in from the left, it nicked off a defender and straight to the onrushing Dujon Sterling who slammed in his first goal for the club.

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Benfica applied significant pressure after the interval, although Fabio Silva had a good opportunity well saved at the other end after he escaped the attention of two defenders on the counter.

The home side’s perseverance was eventually rewarded when a free-kick was angled into a dangerous area and, inexplicably, Rangers defender Connor Goldson nodded past Jack Butland in goal under no real pressure.

That sparked an upsurge in pressure and when John Lundstram was caught in possession the ball was worked back to Di Maria in a central area, but he fluffed his lines and tamely side-footed well past the post to Rangers’ relief.

Rafa Silva then wildly swiped at a great opportunity and the ball sailed over. Benfica continued to press but a disciplined defence held out for a result they would have welcomed before kick-off.

Player of the match – Jack Butland (Rangers)

So many Rangers players delivered in an impressive collective display. Mohamed Diomande did so again, the defence, largely, stood firm but goalkeeper Butland made some crucial interventions that delivered the platform for this result. He continues to be arguably the signing of the season

Rangers show real maturity in Europe – analysis

Ultimately, a debatable penalty and an avoidable own goal cost Rangers the possibility of a staggering win.

Rangers came to Lisbon hampered by injuries, particularly in wide areas, to face a Benfica team which contains considerable quality. They had never lost a home Europa League tie in this stadium.

They still have not but Rangers will feel they could have shattered that record, despite the increasing pressure they had to endure.

The visitors were, understandably, labelled underdogs by manager Philippe Clement. They expected an early storm. One arrived but with Butland again standing strong, Rangers executed their first real attack superbly.

The presence of mind from Diomande to pick out Lawrence on the run was key and, suddenly, all the pressure was on the home side. Such moments of quality are vital at this level.

The decision to award a penalty was controversial but Rangers’ response to that blow was brilliant.

Benfica had chances and, by the end, had Rangers pinned back but it wasn’t chance after chance. They struggled to break the Ibrox side down.

In Europe, Rangers continue to demonstrate a real maturity that is delivering sensational results. They stayed strong in adversity and will take real confidence heading into the return leg at Ibrox having secured a creditable outcome.

What they said

Benfica manager Roger Schmidt: “We showed quality and confidence. We dominated the game in my opinion and had so many chances to score more goals.

“Today was not our best in efficiency. It’s a different game next week. We have the confidence to play a good game there and win.”

Rangers manager Philippe Clement: “I’m really proud of the performance, the result remains a difficult one. We were really close to making a miracle by winning here as the first team ever in the Europa League.

“I am really proud of my team. They showed character, solidarity and personality. We scored two really good goals with good football. I am someone who is demanding towards them, but I cannot ask more from them. They gave it their all.

“We need to continue like this, if they continue to show the mentality they have the last few months, it can be an amazing season.”

Match stats

  • All three of the meetings between Benfica and Rangers have ended in a draw (2-2, 3-3 & 2-2). It’s the most Benfica have ever faced a single opponent in European football with 100% of the results ending as a draw and for Rangers, only against Villarreal have they played more games against a single opponent with all matches ending as a draw (4).
  • Tom Lawrence’s opening goal (6:32) is the second-earliest Benfica have ever conceded in the Europa League and the earliest since November 2020, which was also the last time Benfica had conceded to Rangers in the competition, with Scott Arfield also netting in the seventh minute on that occasion (06:24).
  • Benfica have now conceded in their last nine home matches in major European competition, their longest ever run without a home clean sheet. They have conceded 16 goals across those nine games, an average of 1.8 goals conceded per match.
  • Benfica have never lost a home match in the Europa League (W21 D7), their 28 games in the competition since the rebrand in 2009/10 is the most any side has played without suffering a defeat.
  • Rangers’ Conor Goldson has now scored three own goals in the Europa League, the most of any player in the competition’s history (since the rebrand in 2009/10).
  • Rangers have won just one of their last six away matches in the Europa League knockout stages (D2 L3), conceding 2+ goals in three of their last five.

What’s next?

No respite for Rangers. Their challenge on three fronts takes them to Easter Road on Sunday to face Hibernian (17:30 GMT) in the Scottish Cup quarter-final, before the second leg against Benfica next Thursday (17:45).

  • Line-ups
  • Match Stats
  • Live Text

Line-ups

Benfica

Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 1Trubin
  • 6BahBooked at 72minsSubstituted forFernándezat 84′minutes
  • 4António Silva
  • 30Otamendi
  • 8Aursnes
  • 87Gonçalves Neves
  • 61Morris Luís
  • 7Neres CamposSubstituted forAntunes Gouveiaat 84′minutes
  • 27Fernandes Ferreira da Silva
  • 11Di MaríaBooked at 34mins
  • 9Mendonça CabralSubstituted forSantos Almeidaat 65′minutes

Substitutes

  • 3Fernández
  • 5Rodrigues da Silva
  • 10Kökçü
  • 19Tengstedt
  • 20João Mário
  • 24Jumpe Soares
  • 32Rollheiser
  • 36Santos Almeida
  • 44Lemos Araújo
  • 47Antunes Gouveia
  • 75Nogueira Gomes
  • 82Spencer Marques

Rangers

Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 1ButlandBooked at 45mins
  • 2Tavernier
  • 6Goldson
  • 5Souttar
  • 3YilmazBooked at 67mins
  • 42DiomandeSubstituted forRaskinat 84′minutes
  • 4Lundstram
  • 21SterlingBooked at 27minsSubstituted forMcKinnonat 77′minutes
  • 11LawrenceSubstituted forJackat 77′minutes
  • 7Fábio SilvaSubstituted forMcCauslandat 90+1′minutes
  • 9DessersSubstituted forRoofeat 76′minutes

Substitutes

  • 8Jack
  • 25Roofe
  • 26Davies
  • 28McCrorie
  • 31Barisic
  • 32Wright
  • 38King
  • 43Raskin
  • 45McCausland
  • 46Yfeko
  • 47Fraser
  • 93McKinnon
Referee:
Tobias Stieler
Attendance:
48,759

Match Stats

Home TeamBenficaAway TeamRangers
Possession
Home68%
Away32%
Shots
Home24
Away9
Shots on Target
Home5
Away5
Corners
Home14
Away4
Fouls
Home8
Away13

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Benfica 2, Rangers 2.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Benfica 2, Rangers 2.

  3. Post update

    Foul by Ángel Di María (Benfica).

  4. Post update

    John Souttar (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  5. Substitution

    Substitution, Rangers. Ross McCausland replaces Fábio Silva.

  6. Post update

    Attempt missed. Rafa (Benfica) left footed shot from the centre of the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Nicolás Otamendi with a headed pass.

  7. Post update

    Corner, Benfica. Conceded by Ridvan Yilmaz.

  8. Post update

    João Neves (Benfica) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  9. Post update

    Foul by Nicolas Raskin (Rangers).

  10. Post update

    António Silva (Benfica) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  11. Post update

    Foul by Kemar Roofe (Rangers).

  12. Substitution

    Substitution, Benfica. Tiago Gouveia replaces David Neres.

  13. Substitution

    Substitution, Benfica. Álvaro Fernández replaces Alexander Bah.

  14. Substitution

    Substitution, Rangers. Nicolas Raskin replaces Mohamed Diomande.

  15. Post update

    Attempt missed. Nicolás Otamendi (Benfica) header from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by Ángel Di María with a cross following a corner.

  16. Post update

    Corner, Benfica. Conceded by Jack Butland.

  17. Post update

    Corner, Benfica. Conceded by John Lundstram.

  18. Post update

    Corner, Benfica. Conceded by John Lundstram.

  19. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Ángel Di María (Benfica) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Rafa.

  20. Substitution

    Substitution, Rangers. Ryan Jack replaces Tom Lawrence.

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Player of the match

ButlandJack Butland

with an average of 7.76
  • Benfica
  • Rangers

Benfica

  1. Squad number1Player nameTrubin
    Average rating

    6.19

  2. Squad number87Player nameJoão Neves
    Average rating

    5.95

  3. Squad number7Player nameDavid Neres
    Average rating

    5.88

  4. Squad number11Player nameDi María
    Average rating

    5.70

  5. Squad number61Player nameFlorentino
    Average rating

    5.64

  6. Squad number27Player nameRafa
    Average rating

    5.64

  7. Squad number30Player nameOtamendi
    Average rating

    5.48

  8. Squad number6Player nameBah
    Average rating

    5.44

  9. Squad number8Player nameAursnes
    Average rating

    5.41

  10. Squad number9Player nameArthur Cabral
    Average rating

    5.41

  11. Squad number4Player nameAntónio Silva
    Average rating

    5.27

  12. Squad number36Player nameMarcos Leonardo
    Average rating

    5.14

  13. Squad number3Player nameFernández
    Average rating

    5.13

  14. Squad number47Player nameTiago Gouveia
    Average rating

    5.02

Rangers

  1. Squad number1Player nameButland
    Average rating

    7.76

  2. Squad number7Player nameFábio Silva
    Average rating

    7.64

  3. Squad number21Player nameSterling
    Average rating

    7.62

  4. Squad number11Player nameLawrence
    Average rating

    7.57

  5. Squad number3Player nameYilmaz
    Average rating

    7.51

  6. Squad number42Player nameDiomande
    Average rating

    7.43

  7. Squad number2Player nameTavernier
    Average rating

    7.15

  8. Squad number5Player nameSouttar
    Average rating

    6.75

  9. Squad number4Player nameLundstram
    Average rating

    6.62

  10. Squad number25Player nameRoofe
    Average rating

    6.37

  11. Squad number93Player nameMcKinnon
    Average rating

    6.16

  12. Squad number43Player nameRaskin
    Average rating

    6.11

  13. Squad number8Player nameJack
    Average rating

    5.88

  14. Squad number6Player nameGoldson
    Average rating

    5.85

  15. Squad number9Player nameDessers
    Average rating

    5.80

  16. Squad number45Player nameMcCausland
    Average rating

    5.46