Champions League play-off in the balance as Rangers and PSV draw 2-2

PSV bounced back twice to ensure the tie will be settled next week.

Rangers draw 2-2 with PSV Eindhoven in Champions League play-off first leg SNS Group

Rangers have drawn 2-2 with PSV in the first leg of their Champions League play-off, leaving the tie in the balance ahead of next week’s match in Eindhoven.

Abdallah Sima gave Rangers the lead at Ibrox before Ibrahim Sangare brought PSV level. A breakaway goal from Rabbi Matondo restored the hosts’ advantage but Luuk de Jong scored from a corner to ensure a repeat of the first leg scoreline from last season’s play-off.

The teams will meet next Wednesday in the Netherlands with a place in the group stages of the competition at stake, with both taking encouragement from the game in Glasgow.

PSV showed their attacking intent from the start and looked to be on top for the majority of the first half, stretching the Rangers defence and creating some opening without giving home goalkeeper Jack Butland too much to do.

But moments before half time they were rocked by a Rangers goal from one of manager Michael Beale’s summer signings.

Sangare had been pulling the strings in midfield for PSV but he made a mess of a clearance in his own box and Cyriel Dessers played a smart lay-off to Sima, who curled a perfect shot into the top corner of the net with Walter Benitez helpless to stop it.

That goal would have changed the complexion of the half-time team talks but it didn’t alter PSV’s attacking approach when they reappeared after the break.

The Dutch side got the leveller they were seeking just after the hour mark. A cross from the left went right across goal to Johan Bakayoko and he looked up before sliding a pass to Ismael Saibari. The Moroccan midfielder dummied, leaving Ibrahim Sangare perfectly placed to smack a firm shot past Butland and into the net.

The visitors were buoyed by their success and went searching for a second, pushing Rangers on to the back foot. PSV again took the lions share of possession but once again were caught by a goal against the run of play.

John Lundstram and Rabbi Matondo had been brought on for Sima and Ryan Jack, and Matondo’s fresh legs made a difference.

Todd Cantwell broke into space in the middle of the park and played in Dessers, who put a cross-field ball into Matondo’s path. The substitute kept his cool to place his shot past Benitez and spark huge celebrations. A VAR check had the Rangers support waiting nervously before celebrating again when the goal was confirmed.

PSV pressed again and got their reward with ten minutes on the clock. A corner from the right was swung in, Luuk de Jong rose with John Souttar and the ball was thumped into the back of the net.

Rangers had a late penalty claim when Souttar was nudged by De Jong in the PSV box in the final minutes but the sides had to settle for a draw that sets up a tense return match in eight days time.

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