Rangers must raise game or face Malmo woe insists Steven Gerrard
Rangers manager Steven Gerrard admits his team are facing a Champions League exit tomorrow night if they can’t raise their current performance level.
A dismayed Gerrard watched his team suffer a first defeat in 40 Premiership matches as Jamie Robson scored the only goal of the game for Dundee United at Tannadice on Saturday afternoon.
It came on the back of another lacklustre display in losing 2-1 to Malmo in Sweden in the first leg of their Champions League third qualifying round tie and Gerrard knows he is now under pressure to reignite his team’s form in time for the return fixture at Ibrox.
“We have no time to feel sorry for ourselves,” he said. “We’ll have to accept what is coming our way in the next 24 to 48 hours and get them ready for Tuesday night which is possibly the biggest game we’ve had together as a group.
“I’ve got a job on my hands in the next 48 hours, for sure. The level of the last two performances won’t be enough, that’s for sure.”
Gerrard felt the least Rangers should have taken from Tannadice was a point but accepted his team left themselves open to being caught out by United.
“It’s not the result or performance we were looking for,” he said. “That’s on me and that’s on us as a group.
“These boys have taken me on an incredible run. But to do that we’ve been really high level, we’ve been top and unbreakable almost.
“Unfortunately that wasn’t the case today. Going forward, I don’t think we created enough within the game. At the same time, I don’t think we deserved to lose the game.
“But you always put yourself in that position for one breakaway or one lucky deflection like they got. The kid’s put the ball away really well.
“The majority of the game has been played in United’s half in the second half but there’s no point getting there if you don’t have that invention to hurt teams. I’m disappointed in our quality in the final third.
“So it’s on us, we have to accept it, suck the pain up and get ready for the next three days.”