Feyenoord 2-2 Rangers: Alfredo Morelos heads side closer to Europa League last 32
Rangers climbed top of Europa League Group G and will hit the last 32 if they avoid defeat Young Boys at Ibrox.
Steven Gerrard’s men are a stage above both Porto and Young Boys after the Portuguese won in Switzerland to stop Rangers sealing a knockout place.
After falling in Rotterdam two excellent Alfredo Morelos headers had Rangers ahead before Luis Sinisterra’s solo attempt levelled the score.
Morelos becomes the first Rangers player to internet in four matches in a European competition, in scoring his 23rd and 24th aims of the year.
He nodded in Ryan Kent ball to haul his side level after Feyenoord had dominated the first half, drawing on several moves from Allan McGregor and hitting a pole.
Before the Dutch roared back to claim a stage then the Colombia striker flicked a Borna Barisic cross into the internet.
As the smoke lifted, the sound descended. High an explosive spectacle, into the Rotterdam skies unfolded. Behind one conclusion of Feyenoord’s De Kuip – that translates into The Tub – a more prolonged fireworks screen shimmered and shone as both sets of players ascended to the pitch, an eerie mist out of pyrotechnics in the Rangers end enveloping the 50,000 spirits inside.
Upon its clearing, a series befitting this iconic stadium erupted. Quite literally. Each duck and turn out of a jersey was fulfilled with thunder in the sodden stands, each wave of attack from Dick Advocaat’s team needed the bath stirred to a cauldron that is ferocious.
There’ll be people here – that have their voice to do – which will struggle to pronounce the second half in. Nobody saw this coming where Rangers offered little to shout about. A slithering Sheyi Ojo pass that the slipping Morelos missed was in front of a goalkeeper at Nick Marsman, who didn’t have a save to make.
The same could not be said of his counterpart. McGregor made a phenomenal stop to block Steven Berghuis’ campaign, the follow-up hitting a post of Fer.
In truth, it had been too easy for Feyenoord, a group that – under Jaap Stam – limped to conquer at Ibrox without the merest sign of certainty in their own display. Here they had been a side. Every second ball has been won; every overhaul chased down. Rangers’ midfield could not cope.
Regardless of that, when the opener arrived, it was like a punch in the stomach to Gerrard’s crew awarded a foothold had just been found. A cross was not dealt with, Toornstra got the ball 20 metres out, but it had been the deflection away Filip Helander that defeat McGregor. The lid almost came off the Tub.
The hosts were using a series of close misses threatening McGregor, that the Rangers goal.
Yet, since the deluge stopped at half-time, madness and the goals began to rain . In the center of it was Morelos. The very first of the striker’s goals was thrown out by Kent, by way Rangers’ creative force. His cross has been ideal for the Colombian the implementation, at the post. The top tier in the end of the ground exploded into a vision of limbs.
Morelos was a menace to the home defence, and after yanking his team away from the canvass, the striker was denied a penalty after he went down to the challenge of Fey. But his next goal was not long before. Since Feyenoord threatened to buckle, 13 minutes he struck.
Barisic was the provider, the mind of Morelos the ball looping across Marsman and in the far corner. Forty-five-thousand looked at each other in disbelief as their Europa League pulse began to fade.
However, this game was not done yet. That lead lasted only three minutes. The Sinisterra has been the main protagonist in the game plot twist. He turned and swivelled his way to the box around the rest, leaving Helander in a tangled heap on the turf. The Feyenoord held his guts as Connor Goldson approached, lifting the ball.
As the audience’s belief swelled more the game then swung to the hosts. Their team pulled on and pushed out a Rangers side that failed to hold firm in the face of a torrent of pressure that was late.
Since the fulltime whistle appeared, it was an outcome that triggered celebration at the away end as muted silence fell again to the home service. Rangers’ progression stopped, however it did nudge them to the top of Group G with one match left to play. From the time that’s played in two weeks’ period, we could have summoned our breath back.
Kent was the glowing light for Rangers, especially during a first half that provided encouragement, although it is hard to never give it to Morelos awarded his objectives. He obtained one assist, while his surging runs caused difficulties.
A mention must go to Feyenoord captain Berghuis.