Heartbreak for fans as Rangers lose Europa final in Seville

  • Published
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Rangers fans in Glasgow and Seville were heartbroken after defeat in Seville

Rangers fans have been left devastated after their team lost the Europa League final to Eintracht Frankfurt on penalties.

The match ended 1-1 after extra time, before the German side beat Rangers 5-4 in a shootout in Seville.

Late substitute Aaron Ramsey missed the only penalty in an agonising conclusion in front of tens of thousands of fans.

Earlier they were jubilant when Joe Aribo put Rangers 1-0 ahead in the 57th minute.

But 12 minutes later the goal was cancelled out with an equaliser from Eintracht Frankfurt's Rafael Borre.

Up to 100,000 supporters of the Glasgow side and 50,000 Frankfurt fans travelled to the Spanish city for the match.

Image source, Reuters
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John Lundstram consoled teammate Aaron Ramsey after losing the penalty shoot-out
Image source, Getty Images
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Fans in Glasgow watched with bated breath

Most of them did not have a ticket for the game in the 42,700-capacity Estadio Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan.

However, Rangers fans were able to watch the match on big screens at a second stadium in the north of the city.

Fans arriving back at Glasgow Airport on Thursday morning expressed their disappointment at the result but said it was a great experience.

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Thomas Donnelly and Georg Gottschlich said the atmosphere in Seville was "unbelievable"

Thomas Donnelly, from Barrhill in South Ayrshire, was accompanied by Georg Gottschlich, from Bishopton at the match.

Thomas, who is blind, was provided with a commentary for the game via the club.

They described the atmosphere in Seville as "unbelievable" with Georg adding that the penalties were an "emotional rollercoaster".

Thomas said: "I wouldn't have missed it for the world. And there was absolutely no trouble at all."

Georg added: "We've been awake for 42 hours and have been all over the place but it was a great atmosphere."

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Rangers fans make the journey home after their team loses the Europa Cup final on penalties

Another returning Rangers fan, Jeanette Hunter, said: "What memories. I didn't feel confident with the penalties but it was the best time ever and the players did themselves proud to get so far.

"We'll be back next season. Watch out for us."

Another fan arriving home said: "I had a good time but I'm gutted at the result. But I wouldn't change it. I'd still do it again."

Image source, Getty Images
Image source, Reuters
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Fans watching the match in a Glasgow pub saw Ramsey's penalty saved
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Fans were left bereft after Rangers lost

Supporters leaving the ground after the game told BBC Scotland they were disappointed with the result but proud of their team's performance.

In Glasgow, hundreds of disappointed Rangers fans streamed out of the Louden Tavern near Ibrox as Frankfurt won the penalty shootout.

The pub was packed, with some supporters queuing since Wednesday morning to get a spot inside.

There was an enormous roar from inside when Rangers went 1-0 up but it turned quiet when Frankfurt hit back.

Scenes of joy after going ahead

Image source, Getty Images
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Joe Aribo celebrated in front of fans after opening the scoring
Image source, Reuters
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His goal sparked huge celebrations inside the stadium
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Jubilant fans also celebrated the goal at The Auctioneers pub in Glasgow

Around a dozen police officers were outside the Louden Tavern throughout the evening but there was no serious trouble.

Fans who spoke to BBC Scotland as they left said they were proud of the team and their run in the Europa League.

The mood in the city centre was still jubilant despite the defeat - and the rain.

'They did us proud'

One fan said following the match: "They did us proud. We did really well and that's what matters. You can't ask for more than what they did.

"In life, you get defeated. If it wasn't going to be this game it would be the next game.

"The atmosphere in Glasgow is really, really poor right now but I've had a good night."

Image source, Getty Images
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Rangers fans were devastated to see their team lose on penalties
Image source, PA Media
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Small groups of fans gathered in George Square after the match but the loss was too much for some

Another fan, Chris Strong, made his way into Glasgow from Stirling. He said: "Look at the supporters. It's been buzzing. If you weren't here, what would you be doing?

"It takes time. It took us 14 years."

Small groups of fans gathered in George Square following the match and remained buoyant.

Statues in the area had been barricaded and memorial benches packed away in anticipation of crowds of fans making their way into the city centre.

Police regularly patrolled the area throughout the evening.

Image source, PA Media
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There was a sea of blue and orange in the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium

Earlier, former Rangers captain John Greig, who led the team to victory in the European Cup Winners' Cup Final in Barcelona in 1972, urged fans travelling to Seville to be "ambassadors" and show the "absolute best" of the club.

He added: "To see Rangers in a European final is something many of us thought would not be possible again, and I've been so taken by the incredible lengths you are going to in order to reach Seville to back the team out there.

"It is vital that we all act responsibly and remember the values that this institution stands for."

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