Rangers vs Red Star Belgrade: GvB hits back at ‘arrogance’ claims ahead of Europa League last-16 tie | Football News

Rangers manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst has refuted claims their Europa League victory over Borussia Dortmund has made his players arrogant, insisting they will treat last-16 opponents Red Star Belgrade with respect.

Former Ibrox midfielder Dragan Mladenovic made the claim while looking ahead to Thursday night’s last-16 tie against the Serbian champions.

Mladenovic, who played just seven games for Rangers after joining from Red Star in 2004, said: “I watched the Rangers v Dortmund game and they outscored the German ‘millionaires’.

“Rangers deservedly won convincingly, and the Scots are now a little arrogant.”

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Rangers manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst insists there is no arrogance from his players after their win over Borussia Dortmund sent them through to the last 16 of the Europa League to face Red Star Belgrade.

The Ibrox side recorded a famous 6-4 aggregate triumph over Dortmund in the knockout round play-off after winning 4-2 away and drawing 2-2 at home last month.

But Van Bronckhorst dismissed Mladenovic’s suggestion, saying: “Why are we arrogant? I don’t see any of my players being arrogant – we are very humble in this moment.

“We enjoy being in Europe but we respect every opponent we face and I don’t see any signs of arrogance in my team, in myself or the club.

“We are happy to be in this round and will do everything to win this tie. But arrogant is not the word that comes to my mind when I see my players preparing for this game.”

Aaron Ramsey is in the squad for the tie at Ibrox but will not start the match as Rangers look to take a step towards the last eight of the competition.

The midfielder returned to the squad for Saturday’s Scottish Premiership game against Aberdeen after missing four matches, but was an unused substitute in the 1-0 win.

Aaron Ramsey in action against Annan Athletic
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Aaron Ramsey is in the squad for Thursday night’s match

“Aaron will be in the squad, he will not be starting,” said Van Bronckhorst.

“With Aaron, it is the same as every player in my squad. You want every player to be available and able to play, but you have to also monitor the conditions of the players.

The Dutchman also revealed that Steven Davis, who has not featured since February 12, will miss out again.

“For us, the most important thing is to make sure we have the individual programs for each player to come back to game fitness and that’s what we are doing now,” he added.

Midfielder Steven Davis has not featured since February 12.
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Midfielder Steven Davis has not featured since February 12.

“I am happy that Aaron is back in the squad and we are working hard to get Steven back in the squad as well and for Ianis (Hagi) we know it is going to take longer, but we know we will always have players in our squad who need attention. “

Ahead of the match inside a packed Ibrox, the manager was hopeful about Rangers’ chances of another European victory.

“We are playing a tough team who were group winners but I have a full confidence we can have a good result. We will do everything possible to progress to the next round.

“We play in different systems and have played against different systems. In Europe, you have to be dynamic.”

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