Rangers manager Steven Gerrard believes his side need more creativity to trouble sides like Lyon but didn’t feel there was too much of a gulf between the sides at Ibrox.
The French side won the opening Europa League group game 2-0, with Karl Toko Ekambi scoring a fine goal in the first half before James Tavernier put through his own net after the break.
Gerrard, taking charge of his 50th game in Europe, felt his side had held their own in the match but rued the lapses that allowed the visitors to score twice and take control of the game. However, he wasn’t too disheartened and said Rangers still have a chance to turn things around in the group.
“We’re disappointed with tonight’s result but there’s still five games and 15 points to play for,” he said. “It’s still very early. We have to appreciate that this was a tough game tonight.
“It’s not the start to the group that we wanted but there’s still a lot of football to be played. There’s still a chance for us to get out of this group and that’s the primary aim.”
The former Liverpool star had said before the game that Lyon were probably the highest level opponent that his Rangers side had come up against during his time in charge. After seeing his team fail to seriously trouble the French team’s defence repeatedly, he said that they perhaps had to show more confidence in themselves.
“You’re playing against good teams and good players,” Gerrard said. “You’re playing against someone who’s won the World Cup so it’s not easy to create and score at this level but the learning thing for us is maybe believing in ourselves a bit more, maybe taking risks and being bolder.
“We created some half decent situations but not enough clear cut.”
The manager, who revealed that Ryan Kent came off with a hamstring complaint that will require an MRI scan, paid tribute to Lyon but said there had been moments in the match where Rangers could have been better.
“I think from their point of view, once the second goal goes in it puts them in complete control,” he said. “They’ve got experienced players and an experienced manager and they obviously managed the game pretty well because we were only able to create half chances and moments where they’re not clear cut.
“We need to be a bit more inventive and creative in the final third.
“The second goal was a big moment. I didn’t think at half time that there was much in the game. We got punished for tossing the ball away in the middle of the pitch and allowing someone to come in on their stronger side, which we talked about before the game.
“You have to show him down his weaker side, though to be fair it’s a fantastic finish.
“I can’t remember Allan McGregor having to make another save. They dragged one wide but so did we, and the keeper made a top save off Ryan Kent.”