Maybe the story starts there. As if to give flavor to the epilogue, expected on Wednesday May 18 in the Europa League final against Eintracht Frankfurt, there were the drone afternoons first. In 2011, the Glasgow Rangers were still one of those regulars in European matches. By committing himself in the summer of 2012, French player Sébastien Faure joins only the crumbs left by a judicial liquidation and relegation to the fourth national division of the most celebrated club in Scotland (54 championships). The result of an almost unanimous vote of the members of the Scottish Championship regarding the “Gers”, whose debt is then estimated by the administrators at 166 million euros.
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The giant does not even swim in the small pool anymore, he slides to the bottom of the pond, condemned to visit the spire stadiums. At Berwick, his team-mate Lewis McLeod hit one of the early corners of the match when he nearly lost support, the lawn creation barely crossing the sideline. The Rangers have been warned, the pitfall awaits them on every journey. “We came in, but we had no room for mistakes. Our supporters did not accept that a team is better than us in 4and division, and even gets a single chance against us”, says Sebastien Faure.
45,000 spectators in the Scottish 4th division
At home, for the first season of this new era, the stands of Ibrox Park are still crackling. On average, more than 45,000 believers come to replenish the treasury as ticket sales have become the club’s main resource. The team again focuses on a few familiar faces. On the bench, Ally McCoist, the club’s top goalscorer between 1983 and 1998, will field 11 international players, three of whom have agreed to cut their salaries.
Logic gets them past this first hurdle, then the next, which promotes them to the second division after 33 wins and three draws in 36 games. “If the best French clubs went bankrupt and played between amateurs, I’m not sure they would get such good results,” he said. Sébastien Faure proposes. Because in Glasgow, the defender trained in Lyon never really felt like playing “other than in the first class”† “That’s where the atmosphere and infrastructure of very large clubs hangs”, confirms Daniel Cousin, former Gabonese striker, still scarred by his only season spent under the blue tunic of the Teddy Bears, in 2008. “This club has survived thanks to the unconditional support of its supporters. I had scored a goal against Celtic and they told me I would never forget.”
Steven Gerrard, winning bet
The return to the top level has been delayed for another season, marking the return to the top level of the “Old Firm”, the derby that pits the historically Protestant Rangers against the Catholics of Celtic, the second most successful club in Scotland, is delayed. At the same time, the rival did not hesitate to conquer five championships without difficulty. He will welcome the return of the Rangers to the first division with a bang (5-1). If the 2016-2017 fiscal year proves to be a painful one — three coaches parading the bench in the span of a season — the essential is elsewhere: The podium spot confirms the investment of reform-minded president Dave King, as far as possible. breather for Scottish football, whose renewed interest is attracting “again sponsors and investors”assures Christopher Jack, who is responsible for the day-to-day supervision of the Rangers the heraldin Glasgow.
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A bet – the appointment as coach of the young retiree Steven Gerrard, a former Liverpool midfield magician but a novice in this position – will forever restore the image of the “Light Blues”, one of their many nicknames. Under its thumb, the club is adding another line to its 2021 record, its first in ten years, offering itself a 25-point margin over Celtic, second in the league. A reward for the Englishman who dared to use unbridled tactics led by players accustomed to conquering the feature. James Tavernier, who trains right back, thus becomes one of the best gunners and the emblematic captain. He will remain this season, despite the departure of Gerrard in the autumn, replaced by the old club Giovanni van Bronckhorst. His seven goals followed the Rangers’ European course until Wednesday night finding heights they hadn’t reached since 2008 and a Europa League final, which he lost to Zenit St Petersburg at the time.
An open final
The final of this Europa League was not the most anticipated, on Wednesday in Sevilla (Spain). We owe this on the one hand to the Glasgow Rangers hunting sign. Giovanni Van Bronckhorst’s players notably defeated the Germans of Borussia Dortmund and then RB Leipzig in the semifinals. Eintracht Frankfurt had surprised him by going up against FC Barcelona in the quarter-finals. The winner of the match (9 p.m.) will receive a ticket for the next group stage of the Champions League, the most important club competition in Europe. It would be the first European title for the Scots in 50 years, and for the Germans since 1980.