Rangers pundits at odds over Benfica Europa League loss as scathing verdict neutralised by 'no shame' view

The Ibrox side are out of Europe following their loss to the Portuguese giants at Ibrox

Ally McCoist has delivered a scathing verdict on Rangers’ defending following their 1-0 defeat by Benfica that ended their European hopes for the season.

With the Europa League last-16 tie delicately poised at 2-2 following last week’s first leg in Lisbon, hopes had been raised that Rangers could progress to the quarter-finals against the Portuguese giants. But on a wet night at Ibrox, it was not to be for Philippe Clement’s men after Rafa Silva’s 67th-minute strike gave the visitors victory.

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The manner of Benfica’s winner irked former Rangers striker McCoist, who was working at the game as a pundit for TNT Sports. Silva’s goal came on the counter attack following a corner for the hosts, with striker Cyriel Dessers losing control in the box before Benfica broke rapidly up the pitch to net. “Look at this, I find it incredible,” commented McCoist on the goal. “He might be in his own half, you know, the defending from Rangers again I find, frankly, unbelievable, absolutely unbelievable from your own corner. Not once, twice, three or four times, it's amazing. It cuts across Diomande, gives Butland the eyes and uses his pace. Silva gives himself a better angle but Rangers' defending from their own corner, incredible.”

Rafa Silva tucks home Rangers' winner against Benfica at Ibrox.Rafa Silva tucks home Rangers' winner against Benfica at Ibrox.
Rafa Silva tucks home Rangers' winner against Benfica at Ibrox.

Current Kilmarnock manager and TNT Sports pundit for the night Derek McInnes believed Benfica’s stronger attacking prowess was the major difference at Ibrox. “Benfica just had better forward players than Rangers,” he said. “The goal sucked the life out of Rangers, they never really responded. There’s no shame in losing to a team like this.”

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