How the Polish press reacted to Rangers beating Lech Poznań

Friday morning's Polish newspapers were full of measured responses to Lech Poznań’s 2-0 defeat to Rangers on Thursday. The result ensured Rangers qualified as group winners and consigned Lech to last place.
Bongani Zungu and Karlo Muhar vie for the ballBongani Zungu and Karlo Muhar vie for the ball
Bongani Zungu and Karlo Muhar vie for the ball

Bartosz Nosal, writing in Gazeta Wyborcza, said: “Ianis Hagi, son of the best player in Romanian history, Gheorghe Hagi, could be considered the biggest star among the Rangers squad.

"Hagi junior came close to scoring twice and finally scored just before being substituted, tapping the ball into an empty goal after a header from a free kick had hit the crossbar.”

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Nosal praised Lech for their start to the game, but added: “Even if Lech's game wasn't bad in the second half, Rangers were totally in control of the game. After the match, coach Dariusz Żuraw admitted it.”

Looking on the bright side for the Polish side he said: “This was a successful adventure because reaching the group stage of the Europa League after a five-year break is a success for every Ekstraklasa representative. Even if the greats from Lisbon and Glasgow brutally defeated Lech, the chance of a clash with such rivals should be offered to Lech every year. After another reform of the European competition, it will be even more difficult.”

Tomasz Pomarkiewicz for Fakt added: “After missing out on the chance to qualify for the group stages, Lech were only fighting for prestige and money.”

Pomarkiewicz felt Lech's game crumbled after Cedric Itten's opener.

Jarosław Koliński was a bit more direct in Przegląd Sportowy. He said: “Lech said goodbye to Europe in a bad way. They finished last in their group, losing 2-0 to Rangers in the last grou game.”

Pointing the finger at Tymoteusz Puchacz’s slack pass that allowed Cedric Itten to open the scoring, Koliński stated: "Europe does not forgive such mistakes.”

“Livingston, Hibs and Benfica. What do these teams have in common? They’re the only teams to have taken a point off Rangers this season. The Scots are practically unstoppable.

“Lech Poznań dreamed of ending this year's adventure with the Europa League with a flourish – winning against the Scots, or at least drawing and joining the group of the aforementioned three teams.

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"From today, Lech can only focus on league games, where they have to chase down the league leaders. Eighth place and ten points behind Legia Warsaw is not ideal but Kolejorz have a game in hand.”

In Super Express, focus was on how much money Lech had made from the Europa League (just shy of £4.1 million) and how they might invest that in the playing squad for an assault on the Ekstraklasa, given the loss of income from the coronavirus pandemic.

The journalist from Onet pointed out that after Lech’s defeat, Poland has fallen to 30th in UEFA’s coefficient table – "We have never been so low on this list.

"Poznań's defeat has consequences for all Polish teams.

"Next season the league champions will play in the Champions League qualifying rounds, and no Polish team will play in the Europa League.

"The Ekstraklasa runners-up and Polish Cup winners will play in the second qualifying round of the European Conference League. The third-placed team in the league will have to compete from the first qualifying round.

"If Lech had drawn with Rangers, Poland would have been in 29th place.”

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