Gerrard: Rangers close to perfect after kick-starting Europa League campaign

Obiajulu Chiagoziem

Steven Gerrard, Rangers boss has attributed his side’s winning against Brøndby IF to a mark of hardwork from his team as he claims they were close to perfect.

First half goals from Leon Balogun and Kemar Roofe sealed a 2-0 win at Ibrox and the hosts’ first points of this season’s competition.

Speaking about his club’s performance, Gerrard told BT Sport: “I thought it was a strong home performance in Europe.

“We’ve kick-started our Europa League campaign. The first two results haven’t been good enough, which put a lot of pressure on us tonight.

“But we’ve got to go and replicate this performance and result [away at Brondby] in a couple of weeks’ time.

“I thought the fans were magnificent. The game plan we set out to do, the players have delivered.

“It’s really close to the performance we’re looking for. 

“We’ve played well for halves and 60 minutes, but tonight was really close to a perfect 90-minute performance.”

He didn’t fail to acknowledge the mastero display of Joe Aribo, who provided a constant threat to the reigning Danish Superliga champions with his pace and power.

“He’s a great kid; he wants to learn and he wants to grow,” the Rangers boss added.

“What I’ve said to Joe is: ‘you’re a much better player when you play angry in a nice way. You’re a big strong lad; go and put yourself about’ and when he does, he’s a joy to watch.

“I thought his first 45-minute performance was outstanding. That’s probably the reason why he tired a little bit, but he’s played a lot and he’s been away on international duty [with Nigeria]. 

“But if he can find that performance consistently over 90 minutes, we’ll be lucky to keep hold of him.” he concluded.