RB Leipzig beat Rangers 1-0 to take advantage in Europe League semi-final

The Bundesliga side hold a narrow lead going into the decisive match at Ibrox.

RB Leipzig beat Rangers 1-0 to take advantage in Europe League semi-final SNS Group

Rangers will have to win at Ibrox to reach the Europa League final after losing 1-0 to RB Leipzig in the first leg of their last four tie.

Angelino scored with a stunning volley five minutes from full-time to give Leipzig the advantage after Rangers had kept the Bundesliga side at bay with a disciplined and energetic performance.

The result makes the German team firm favourites to reach the final in Seville but Rangers could turn the tie around if they can win in front of their own fans next Thursday.

With Alfredo Morelos and Kemar Roofe out, Giovanni van Bronckhorst handed a start to Scott Wright, with Joe Aribo playing an advanced role.

Rangers found themselves under pressure form the start but set up with a system that allowed John Lundstram to drop back into a five-man defence when needed to frustrate their opponents.

There was a third minute early scare as Christopher Nkunku went down in box under close attention from Connor Goldson. There’s no foul though and Leipzig’s hopes of a penalty come to nothing.

Leipzig on the front foot and probing for openings in the early stages and Calvin Bassey had to react quickly to block when Nkunku took possession in the box but didn’t bring the ball under control quickly enough to pick a better shot.

Rangers were well organised and soaked up pressure but were restricted to rare forays up field themselves. Connor Goldson had a half-chance with a header after Scott Wright won a corner but the defender was doing most of his work keeping Leipzig at bay.

The best chance of the game so far came just after the restart when Rangers broke forwrad and Ryan Kent took possession. He surged into the box and found space to get off a left foot shot that dragged wide of the far post.

Minutes later, Rangers had another chance, Tavenier’s volley deflected wide but the corner coming to nothing.
Allan McGregor was soon pressed into action after the ball broke to Nkunku on the edge of the box and struck a powerful shot that the Rangers goalkeeper saved.

Rangers hearts were in mouths shortly after when Nkunku found a gap in the defence, went ronud McGregor and, having done the hard part, blazed a shot high and wide.

With five minutes left on the clock, Leipzig took the lead in spectacular fashion. A corner was headed out of the box by Calvin Bassey, only for Angelino to hit a first time volley that left McGregor with no chance.

Rangers’ game plan was to contain and stifle RB Leipzig and they defended very well for large parts of the match.

In the end, they were beaten by a wonder strike in the 85th minute.

Giovanni van Bronckhorst, at his post-match news conference, praised his players.

He said they battled very well and he insists the tie is far from over, saying his team will go for it in the second leg.

They will be backed by a home support and players who missed the trip with return.

Kemar Roofe will be back from injury, and perhaps Aaron Ramsey too, so it’s set up nicely for next week’s second leg.

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