Report: Malmo 1 Rangers 1
Rangers crashed out of the Champions League at the first hurdle after drawing 1-1 with Swedish side Malmo on the night, and 1-2 on aggregate. Rangers now drop down to the Europa League and lose out on a Champions League jackpot.
It was a stormy game with three players sent off, two for Rangers, one for Malmo. Steven Whittakeer was the first to go after he threw the ball at a Malmo player after being fouled. Madjid Bougherra, playing his last game for the club was next to go after being judged to have elbowed a Malmo player as he went up for the ball. Malmo then lost a player in a very similar incident to the Bougherra red card.
Despite going down to ten men in the first half, Rangers took the lead and made it 1-1 on aggregate thanks to a goal from Nikica Jelavic, his first for the club in Europe. It was a well taken volley from a Maurice Edu cross.
Going down to nine men was too much for Rangers though and they eventually lost the aggregate lead again in the 80th minute after a wonder goal from Hamad. I firmly believe Rangers could have won this one if it wasn't for losing two players.
I'm not going to say anything about the referee though, no excuses, and no conspiracy theories. We are Rangers, not Celtic. We will just need to take it on the chin and hope for a successful Europa League campaign. All wee need to do is win the play off to be in the group stages.
Malmo v Rangers Match Stats