Rangers manager Michael Beale was delighted with his side’s win over Real Betis but sees it as just one step forward after a difficult start to the season.
Abdallah Sima scored the only goal of the game at Ibrox in the Europa League opener, getting a final touch ahead of Ben Davies to prod home a rebound from a Kemar Roofe shot, and handed his side three points in what looks to be a competitive group.
The win was the second in a row for Rangers, following a victory against St Johnstone, and continues a recovery from a tough spell before the international break that saw Beale’s new-look side lose heavily to PSV before being beaten in the first Old Firm game of the season at home to Celtic.
The Rangers boss was pleased with the outcome on another big European night, and happy with some aspects of the performance, but said he wouldn’t get carried away and wants the players to build on the win.
“I think we need to back it up at the weekend,” he said.
“We come into the season and what we were seeing behind the scenes were real positive signs and then the results and performances have not been in line with that.
“The first thing is showing the passion and desire, the quality will come over time. Certainly results and confidence will but it’s too early for me to start talking and giving the team praise.
“I think for this group we’ve had a couple of bangs on the head, it’s fair to say at the start of the season. We’ve heard it loud and clear from the outside.
“All we can do is play the next game. We’ve had two clean sheets coming out of the international break. That’s a real positive sign.
“But listen, nothing’s done. It’s just one performance. And there was a lot in that game that I’m happy with but there was an equal amount that we need to improve on.”
Beale saw his side create a host of chances, and keep out Betis when they showed signs of danger but he felt that at times in the first half his side had “lacked belief with the ball”. However, he felt there was a huge improvement after the break and the goal “typified the passion” in the team.
“Ultimately, we deserved to win the game,” he said.
“I was under no illusions about the quality that they possessed and I knew that at times it was going to be tough.
“I explained that to the players at half time and said ‘Step over the line and commit to the game. Really gommit. Not half or seven out of ten’.
“I’m telling you that it’s worth it in the end.
“It’s just three points in the group and we’ve got two tough away games [against Sparta Prague and Aris Limassol] now.
“We’ll enjoy tonight but my focus is now on Motherwell.”
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