‘The level goes up now’ - Michael Beale urges Rangers strike-force to find ruthless streak after scraping past Servette

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The Gers boss recognises his team must up their performance levels when they take on PSV Eindhoven in the play-off round.

Michael Beale has told his new-look Rangers strikeforce to sharpen up in front of goal after watching his side narrowly scrape past Servette to reach the Champions League play-off round.

A 1-1 draw against the Swiss outfit in Geneva proved enough for the Ibrox club to progress 3-2 on aggregate after James Tavernier’s second half header cancelled out Dereck Kutesa’s stunning opener.

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The Scottish giants could have made life easier for themselves in the closing stages with substitute Cyriel Dessers striking the woodwork and £5.3million signing Danilo somehow blazing over with the goal at his mercy. But Rangers will now face a rematch against Dutch side PSV Eindhoven over two legs for a place among Europe’s elite for a second consecutive year.

Connor Goldson thwarts Dereck Kutesa during Rangers 1-1 draw against Servette in Geneva.Connor Goldson thwarts Dereck Kutesa during Rangers 1-1 draw against Servette in Geneva.
Connor Goldson thwarts Dereck Kutesa during Rangers 1-1 draw against Servette in Geneva.

Speaking to BBC Scotland post-match, Beale acknowledged his attacking players must find their shooting boots when they welcome the Eredivisie outfit to Ibrox next week.

“On nights like tonight, you need to take those moments,” Beale stated. “Their guy had an excellent finish and we had similar opportunities two or three times and don’t hit the target.

“It was a fantastic cross and Dani’s in the right areas. So is Abdallah (Sima), we’ve got two on two in the box. They made the movements that we want them to make, it’s just that I’m backing Dani to score that more often than not.”

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Asked if his new-look strikeforce were showing him enough given the money spent in that area of the pitch this summer, Beale responded: “Well they’ve all scored a goal so that’s the positive. We’re only three or four games into the season and these games are difficult away from home in Europe.

“I’ve been involved in around 60 of them now and they’re difficult. The next one, we need to improve. The level goes up now with PSV. We know how big a game that was for both clubs last year. It’s huge again this year. They’re in good form. But listen, it’s Rangers, it’s Ibrox and next week we’ll go hell for leather.”

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