Europa League - Qualifying First Round - 2nd Leg
Shkupi0Rangers0

Shkupi 0-0 Rangers (0-2 on aggregate)

Alfredo Morelos in possession for Rangers against Shkupi
Rangers' Alfredo Morelos failed to find the net but his side eased into the next round of qualifiers

Rangers progressed to the Europa League second qualifying round after a goalless draw with Shkupi in Macedonia.

The visitors, holding a 2-0 advantage from last week's first leg, were seldom troubled, with Josh Windass and Glenn Middleton coming closest to a Gers goal in the second half.

Muarem Muarem almost scored to set up a nervy final two minutes, but his shot was well blocked by Allan McGregor.

Steven Gerrard's men will face Petrocub or Osijek in the next round.

The Moldovan and Croatian outfits meet on Thursday with the aggregate score 1-1 from the first leg.

Ron Broja and Basil Nchama combined to engineer a chance to give Shkupi the perfect start, but James Tavernier was on hand to block the shot, another important intervention in this tie after his late penalty in the opening encounter.

Josh Windass of Rangers pressures Shkupi's Bunjamin Shabani
Free-flowing football was at a premium in Skopje

At the other end, Jamie Murphy twice threatened to make the decisive breakthrough. His close-range effort from Alfredo Morelos' cross was deflected wide, then the midfielder just failed to reach a terrific Tavernier ball with his head.

The Rangers skipper put his side in trouble soon after, though. He surrendered possession on the touchline midway inside his own half and Baze Ilijoski fired in a shot from 20 yards that McGregor could only divert behind.

A couple of corners flashed dangerously across the Rangers box and Muarem called McGregor into action again with a powerful drive as Shkupi served notice they believed there was life in this tie yet.

Windass almost got the goal to take the sting out of the contest when he carried the ball 60 yards to reach the penalty box, but his effort was too close to goalkeeper Suat Zendeli.

Morelos could and probably should have put the tie beyond doubt in the final minute of the first half when Tavernier's clipped ball found the Colombian alone in the box. However, his first touch was awful and the chance was lost.

After the break, Windass drew a brilliant save from Zendeli when he cut in on his right foot and struck a fierce drive from the corner of the box. Tavernier again tested the Shkupi captain with a curling 30-yard free-kick.

Steven Gerrard watches his team in action in Skopje
Steven Gerrard is unbeaten in his two competitive games as Rangers manager

Rangers were in complete control and the only thing missing was a goal to put the tie to bed.

Middleton, impressive off the bench in the first leg, was presented with arguably the chance of the game when slipped in by a lovely pass from fellow substitute Ovie Ejaria, but sliced his effort into the side-netting.

Just as it seemed Rangers were cruising home, Muarem left Connor Goldson for dead and would have scored the opener in the 88th minute but for an excellent one-on-one save from McGregor.

A rare moment of panic on a generally comfortable night for Gerrard's men as they successfully negotiated the first of four hurdles to Europa League qualification.

Line-ups

Shkupi

  • 1Zendeli
  • 14BrojaBooked at 62mins
  • 15Owono NchamaaaSubstituted forShabaniat 37'minutes
  • 4Bilali
  • 3TipuricBooked at 67mins
  • 16Krivanjeva
  • 11MuaremBooked at 59minsSubstituted forIsmailjiat 90+2'minutes
  • 88Adem
  • 18IlijoskiBooked at 46mins
  • 23StojkovskiBooked at 44mins
  • 19VujcicSubstituted forMuharemat 76'minutes

Substitutes

  • 5Bajrami
  • 7Ljamcevski
  • 8Shabani
  • 9Muharem
  • 13Aleksovski
  • 25Veliu
  • 34Ismailji

Rangers

  • 1McGregor
  • 2Tavernier
  • 8Jack
  • 6Goldson
  • 11WindassBooked at 59minsSubstituted forMiddletonat 64'minutes
  • 21CandeiasSubstituted forEjariaat 72'minutes
  • 7MurphySubstituted forHallidayat 90+1'minutes
  • 15Flanagan
  • 17McCrorie
  • 19Katic
  • 20Morelos

Substitutes

  • 10Ejaria
  • 16Halliday
  • 22Docherty
  • 25Alnwick
  • 29Rudden
  • 30Bradley
  • 40Middleton
Referee:
Halil Meler
Attendance:
4,750

Scores, Results & Fixtures

Tuesday 17th July 2018

As It Stood

A

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Villarreal6321106411
2FC Astana6312107310
3Slavia Prague62226608
4Maccabi Tel-Aviv611418-74

B

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Dynamo Kiev6411159613
2Partizan Belgrade622289-18
3Young Boys613278-16
4Skenderbeu6123610-45

C

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Sporting Braga631298110
2Ludogorets62317529
3Istanbul Basaksehir622278-18
4Hoffenheim6123810-25

D

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1AC Milan6321136711
2AEK Athens61506518
3HNK Rijeka62131112-17
4Austria Vienna6123916-75

E

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Atalanta64201441014
2Lyon6321114711
3Everton6114715-84
4Apollon Limassol6033514-93

F

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Lokomotiv Moscow632194511
2FC Copenhagen62317349
3Sheriff Tiraspol62314409
4Zlín6024110-92

G

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Viktoria Plzen6402138512
2Steaua Bucharest631297210
3Lugano6303911-29
4Hapoel Be'er Sheva6114510-54

H

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Arsenal64111441013
2Red Star Belgrade62313219
3Köln620478-16
4BATE Borisov6123616-105

I

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1RB Salzburg633071612
2Marseille62224408
3Konyaspor613246-26
4Vitória Guimarães612359-45

J

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Ath Bilbao632185311
2Östersunds FK632184411
3Zorya Luhansk620439-66
4Hertha Berlin612367-15

K

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Lazio6411127513
2Nice630312759
3SV Zulte Waregem6213813-57
4Vitesse6123510-55

L

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Zenit St Petersburg65101751216
2Real Sociedad64021661012
3Rosenborg6123611-55
4Vardar6015320-171
View full Europa League tables

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