RANGERS are getting their first shot at European silverware since 2008 as they face Eintracht Frankfurt in the Europa League final.
Kemar Roofe is fit after a month out injured but will only start on the bench as Joe Aribo has been chosen to lead the line in a ‘False 9’ role.
Seville is the venue for tonight and that could make victory even sweeter for the Gers as it is the same city in which Celtic failed to beat Porto in the 2003 final.
Opponents Frankfurt pulled off a huge upset against Barcelona in the round of 16, as well as comfortably dealing with West Ham in the semi-final.
They have mooted Man Utd target Evan Ndicka starting in defence while ex-PSG goalkeeper Kevin Trapp is between the sticks.
However, experienced centre-back Martin Hinteregger is still out injured in a boost to the Gers.
Securing this trophy is the only way Eintracht can land themselves in Europe after an 11th place Bundesliga finish, so they’ll be raring to go.
A Champions League group stage place is on offer for the winner with Rangers looking to qualify for the first time since 2010 and Frankfurt for the first time since 1960.
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- Rangers XI: McGregor, Goldson, Lundstram, Bassey, Tavernier, Jack, Kamara, Barisic, Wright, Aribo, Kent.
- Frankfurt XI: Trapp, Toure, Tuta, N’Dicka, Knauff, Sow, Rode, Kostic, Lindström, Kamada, Borre.
From zero to hero
Okay, zero might be a bit harsh. But the revival of John Lundstram at Rangers has been nothing short of a miracle. After dropping to the fourth tier of professional football, he now plays for his childhood team, in the Europa League Final!
Many fans had written him off. But he has become not only a key player, but a cult hero amongst the Rangers fans.
His winner against Leipzig sealed their place today.
Ally McCoist in dreamland
A very passionate Scotsman has his say on the atmosphere.
It’s magic, the adrenaline. You know when you can just feel it and embrace it, it’s just such a feel good factor
Ally McCoist, pundit
Rangers turning up in style
The fans have taken their seats
Just half an hour until kick-off. Seville is buzzing!
Frankfurt flexing form
Only one other team has won the Europa League without losing a game. Rangers are looking to become the second team to do so this evening. Despite some below average results in the league, they’ve beaten Barcelona and West Ham on their European journey.
Oliver Glasner has just one last challenge remaining…
A range of age
Eintracht Frankfurt’s bench includes 38-year-old Makato Hasebe. Amad Diallo, who sits on the Rangers bench is half his age! Mind you, Rangers keeper McGegor, beats the Japanese international. He’s reached the 40 year milestone.
Nothing beats experience!
Ache, Barkok, Chandler, da Costa, Grahl, Hasebe, Hauge, Hrustic, Jakic, Lammers, Lenz, Paciencia
Roofe and Ramsey on The Gers bench
Arfield, Balogun, Davis, Diallo, King, Lowry, McCrorie, McLaughlin, Ramsey, Roofe, Sakala, Sands
Frankfurt starting 11
Oliver Glasner makes one change from the side that beat West Ham in the second leg to come away 3-1 winners on aggregate.
Hauge makes way for Lindstrom on the right hand side.
Topscorer Borre, leads the line.
Trapp, Ndicka, Sow, Kostic, Kamada, Rode, Toure, Borre, Lindstrom, Tuta, Knauff
Van Bronckhorst names an unchanged side from the one that beat Leipzig 3-1 to secure their place in the final.
All 11 players were rested against hearts four days ago in prepearation for tonight.
Aribo is trusted to lead the line this evening, with Roofe on the bench after returning to fitness.
McGregor, Tavernier, Goldson, Bassey, Barisic, Lundstram, Jack, Kamara, Wright, Aribo, Kent
To confirm the logistics, whoever wins this evening’s game will qualify for the Champions League next season. The rule was only introduced in 2015, with Villarreal most recently benefitting, reaching the semi-finals of the competition this year.
Since Celtic have won the Scottish Premiership, Rangers will have no other route into the Champions League other than with a win this evening. Nor will Eintracht Frankfurt, who have finished down in 11th in the Bundesliga.
Not to add any extra pressure or anything…
Early Rangers team news
Rangers boss, Van Bronckhorst has confirmed the availability of striker, Kemar Roofe for this evening’s final after missing the previous round against Leipzig.
Morelos and Helander remain unavailable. However, Rangers topscorer this season Morelos, has been spotted walking the streets of Seville, supporting his team and pausing for photos with fans. That’s the spirit.
Frankfurt’s results to the final
Eintracht Frankfurt got automatic progress to round of 16 as a result of topping their group.
Round of 16: Frankfurt 3-2 Real Betis
Quarter-final: Frankfurt 4-3 Barcelona
Semi-final: Frankfurt 3-1 West Ham
Rangers’ results to the final
Round of 32: Borussia Dortmund 4-6 Rangers
Round of 16: Rangers 4-2 Red Star Belgrade
Quarter-final: Braga 2-3 Rangers
Semi-final: RB Leipzig 2-3 Rangers
It’s going to be ram
- Previously hosted the 1986 European Cup final.
- The arena for the 1982 World Cup semi-final game between West Germany and France
- A capacity of 42,714 seats.
- Is currently in the top ten for biggest stadiums in Spain.
- Currently occupied by Seville football club
- And will be the assigned ground for TONIGHT’S Europa League final
Here is the RAMON SANCHEZ PIZJUAN STADIUM
Could be quite frankly brilliant
Eintracht Frankfurt have the opportunity to secure their first European trophy in more than 40 years.
It will be German outfit’s first European final since their beating fellow Bundesliga side Borussia Monchengladbach in the 1980 UEFA Cup final.
Frankfurt head coach Oliver Glasner stated the importance of this game and what it means to the fans.
For Eintracht, for the fans, for the club, for the players. It would be the most important thing ever.
It has extraordinary significance, great significance, and that’s why we’re going to try our best so that we come home with the trophy.
And spend one or two nights celebrating with our fans.
Going for the golden boot
Surprisingly, Rangers full-back James Tavernier is going for the golden boot in the 2021/22 Europa League campaign.
The defender currently has seven goals to his name and is in amazing form for his club.
Braga’s Galeno and Karl Toko Ekambi who represents Lyon are closest to Tavernier with six goals.
But with of those teams eliminated, Toko Ekambi and Galeno cannot improve on their numbers.
However, Eintracht Frankfurt’s Daichi Kamada sits on five goals and should he sensationally score a hat-trick tonight, the Japanese international can steal the golden boot off Tavernier.
Rangers’ last European Cup final
The last time Rangers were in a European final, it wasn’t a good day at the office.
Rangers miserably lost 2-0 to Russian side Zenit St.Petersburg in the 2008 UEFA Cup final after such a heroic campaign.
They faced off in the City of Manchester Stadium and the fixture is known for having the largest travelling support in football history – 200,000 Rangers fans rocked up to the stadium.
But it wasn’t enough to get them over the line unfortunately and the Gers hadn’t got to another final since.
The Gers are in Seville
Rangers supporters are in town and have taken over the streets of Seville, Spain.
Here are Betfair’s current odds
90 minutes only
- Frankfurt to win 29/20
- Draw 23/10
- Rangers to win 2/1
To lift the trophy
- Frankfurt to win 4/6
- Rangers to win 11/10
*Odds courtesy of Betfair are correct at time of publication
Welcome to the Europa League final
Hello SunSport family and welcome to our live blog of the Europa League final between Scottish giants Rangers and German outfit Eintracht Frankfurt.
Both sides have had a difficult paths to Seville and both sets of supporters will feel as if their teams deserve to be here.
The Gers have had to overcome the likes of Borussia Dortmund and RB Leipzig in the knockout stages.
Whilst Frankfurt caused the biggest upset of the tournament when they defeated Barcelona and followed that up with a huge win over West Ham who have been in good form this season.
Either way, only one team can be crowned champions of the Europa League which will guarantee them with an automatic Champions League spot
Stay tuned people because coming right up, we will have the latest gossip, team news and starting line-ups all before the big kick off at 8pm UK time.