Rangers travelled to Rotterdam in the hopes of securing a place in the knockout stage of the Europa League. Despite not achieving that, a point at De Kuip puts us top of the group going into a final day show down knowing that a draw would see us through, and a win would see us top the group. Feyenoord were a much better force than what we saw at Ibrox, and our first half display left a lot to be desired, but we upped things massively in the second period with some very special displays from our special players.
Allan McGregor – 7
He put in a superb shift in the first half to really make sure the game didn’t run away from us, made some excellent saves, particularly from Feyenoord set pieces. He may be one of the most senior members of our squad but you cannot argue that his reactions are still as sharp as ever. In terms of the goals conceded, there is an argument to be made for him needing to come off his line to collect the ball rather than leaving the ball to Barisic, but we know that he is not the kind of keeper who is happy to come off his line. As far as the second goal is concerned, that’s more as issue of the defence I would say, unfortunate to be chipped mind you.
James Tavernier – 6
In fairness to the team, we did not look that bad in the first ten minutes of the first half, and Tavernier in particular looked set to put in a really good shift. The problem for him was that after that period of time he seriously reverted to type of late, his crossing constantly going way too long or finding the head…of the opposition defender. When you consider that the best moments of our game came down the left hand side, it tells you what little positive impact Tavernier really had.
Connor Goldson – 6
Of the two central defenders I would say Goldson was the more solid as he seemed more comfortable with standing tackles and tracking back. None of our defenders seemed capable of winning an aerial challenge, Connor certainly among those who had a torrid time dealing with these threats. I was disappointed that he did not bring down Sinisterra further up the park, I thought he had the better opportunity to do so.
Filip Helander – 5
A tougher night for Helander, who also was really not able to win the high balls. His speed, or lack thereof, was exposed at times as well. It is, in all honesty, his own goal, but you cannot be critical of him for that. However, he did not look his usual composed self (did the atmosphere potentially get to him?) and he looked so much better against them at Ibrox, indeed it was really when he properly arrived as a Rangers player.
Borna Barisic – 7
Borna’s crossing in the first half was also not that great, and you could argue that he should have focused more on staying back to deal with the threat of Berghuis. The second half was an improvement, and the undoubted highlight of his game was his fantastic cross to set up Alfredo’s second goal. That’s the thing with Barisic, even if he is having a quieter game, he can produce these magic moments.
Ryan Jack – 7
As far as the first half was concerned, I thought it was the worst we have seen of him in a very long time. I don’t know whether I am being too unfair on him given what we have come to expect from him, but I don’t think he did anywhere near as well with covering the right hand side or getting his foot on the ball and setting any sort of tempo. He improved on these aspects immensely in the second half however, adding a lot more bite to his game as well.
Steven Davis – 7
Inconspicuous is a word that comes to mind regarding his first half display. As I’ve said before, if our midfield looks anonymous it usually means that Steven Davis (if he is playing) is not on it. Therefore, when we were having a lot more joy with the ball in the second half, it can only be deduced that Davis, like Jack, got much more into the game.
Glen Kamara – 5
I can forgive many mistakes from our players, a mis-hit shot, a poorly timed challenge. But what I find hard to accept is a player switching off when defending. Kamara simply did not react to the advancing Toornstra, giving him plenty of time to get his shot away which eventually found its way into the net. He also did not cover the left back area anywhere near well enough and, like the other midfielders, failed to impact the game at all in the first half but, unlike the other midfielders, didn’t improve a huge deal in the second half.
Sheyi Ojo – 5
No tracking back, no bite, he occasionally would get the ball in an advanced area but did not utilise it well at all. Gave Morelos no service, and it’s not the first time that we have said so much of this about his game. This is why he is so often so criticised, because when other attackers are difference makers, it too often feels like Ojo is being carried.
Alfredo Morelos – 9 – Man of the Match
He is one of the best players in the Europa League this season. It’s as simple as that. His first half was quiet due to the fact that he wasn’t getting the service, but when he did get it in the second half, boy oh boy did he take advantage. Look at his eyes in the build up to the first goal, from a certain point he does not lose sight of the ball, that is in the rules of how to head the ball. I’ve no doubt did that for the second as well, and he finds the opposite corner on this occasion. He has scored all types of goals for us in this competition, and he has added even more value to himself as a result. Simply wonderful performance.
Ryan Kent – 8
Like so many of the side, his first half wasn’t much to write home about, but he is always looking to be that creative outlet and never hides from that responsibility. What a cross he put in for the equalising goal, and the rest of his second half certainly saw him continue to try creating more opportunities. He absolutely looks at home on this kind of stage.
Scott Arfield – 6
Came on midway through the second half and ran about a fair bit but I can’t recall anything major that he did in relation to opportunities.