Under-pressure Rangers boss Michael Beale calls on his players to back up superb 1-0 win over Real Betis and banish their early season woes
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Under-pressure Rangers boss Michael Beale calls on his players to back up superb 1-0 win over Real Betis and banish their early season woes

Nov 29, 2023
  • Rangers were booed off following Old Firm defeat on September 3
  • But the Ibrox crowd reacted with delight as a La Liga scalp was claimed
  • Abdallah Sima and Ben Davies combined to secure an opening round victory

Michael Beale has told his Rangers players they must back up a superb win over Real Betis to complete a turnaround from their early season woes.

A 68th minute goal — given to Abdallah Sima just ahead of Ben Davies — sealed an excellent start to Europa League Group C and eased the pressure on Beale.

After angrily booing Rangers from the pitch following Old Firm defeat on September 3, the Ibrox crowd reacted with delight to a vastly improved second half display from their side as a La Liga scalp was claimed. 

Quickly switching his focus to Sunday’s visit from Motherwell, Beale said: ‘We have to win at the weekend and then we have a (League Cup) quarter-final midweek.

‘The expectation for me is just around the corner. We have to get back on it. There are areas we need to improve, but, in terms of the work ethic and the passion, I’ll take that. That is a great starting place for us.

Michael Beale has told his Rangers players they must back up a superb win over Real Betis

Michael Beale has told his Rangers players they must back up a superb win over Real Betis

Abdallah Sima and Ben Davies combined to give Rangers an opening round victory

Abdallah Sima and Ben Davies combined to give Rangers an opening round victory

Rangers will hope to build on Thursday's victory and banish their early season woes

Rangers will hope to build on Thursday’s victory and banish their early season woes

‘I have got one of the best jobs in the world. Manager of Rangers Football Club is a huge privilege and you have to enjoy it. 

‘We won against Real Betis at a packed house. What is there not to enjoy?’

Beale lavished praise on Davies, who was excellent in central defence.

The Englishman was recalled for his first appearance of the season in Saturday’s 2-0 win over St Johnstone.

‘I think Ben has been very gracious and handed the goal over,’ said Beale. ‘But what about Ben? The last two performances have been outstanding.

‘It was a really good opponent (in Betis). First half, we didn’t show enough belief with the ball, having said that the last two chances were with us. 

 ‘We spoke about that at half time. More belief, more passion and more desire. The goal typified that because the first contacts we won.’

Davies insisted he was happy to hand credit to Sima for the 67th-minute clincher after a Kemar Roofe shot was saved and both closed in to force the ball.

‘Let the striker take that goal and I’ll have the clean sheet,’ said Davies.

‘It was a big second half for us.’ Brighton loanee Sima also put the team first, adding: ‘The most important thing is the win.’

MATCH FACTS

Rangers: Butland, Tavernier, Goldson, Davies, Barisic, Cifuentes (Jack 81), Lundstram, Sima (Sterling 89), Lawrence (Lammers 62), Matondo, Roofe (Dessers 89).

Subs Not Used: Souttar, Scott Wright, McCrorie, Kieran Wright, King, Devine, Lyall, McKinnon.

Booked: Goldson.

Goals: Sima 67.

Real Betis: Bravo, Bellerin, Pezzella, Bartra, Abner Vinicius, Rodriguez ,Roca, Luiz Henrique (Perez 72), Isco (Diao 88), Ezzalzouli (Sanchez 72),Iglesias (Willian Jose 72).

Subs Not Used: Miranda, Guardado, Ruibal, Vieites, Fernandez, Garcia. Booked: Bartra, Bravo, Pezzella.

Ref: Lawrence Visser (Belgium).

source

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