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Last Updated: Wednesday, 15 December, 2004, 21:34 GMT
Rangers 0-2 Auxerre
Bonaventure Kalou is congratulated on his first goal
Rangers tumbled out of the Uefa Cup after falling to a home defeat by Auxerre with a dreadful performance.

They went one down after just nine minutes when Zura Khizanishvili allowed the Ivory Coast striker Bonaventure Kalou to drift free and he scored at the second attempt.

Rangers had chances to equalise but Auxerre were the better team and went two up at the start of the second half.

Following another mistake by Khizanishvili, Kalou slipped free of Jean-Alain Boumsong to slot home.

Rangers made the worst possible start when, having made a mess of a short corner, the home side conceded possession and the ball found its way to Benjani Mwaruwari, who in turn found Kalou.

Kalou escaped the attentions of Khizanishvili to chip the ball over Stefan Klos and though his first effort came back off the bar, he had a simple task to tap the rebound into an empty net.

Shota Arveladze was penalised for pulling as he himself went down inside the box a minute later, but it was Auxerre who continued to look the more dangerous, with Benoit Cheyrou forcing Klos to save from long range.

Hamed Namouchi had Rangers' best chance so far after 21 minutes when he got his head to a Gregory Vignal free kick, but his effort finished just wide.

Dado Prso rues a missed chance for Rangers
Dado Prso rues a missed chance for Rangers
Namouchi was unfortunate not to receive a better cross from Dado Prso with the goal at his mercy five minutes later.

Rangers were almost caught out again when the ball was flicked into the path of Benjani at the back post, but fortunately for the home side, he could not get sufficient power into the effort and Klos gathered.

Prso should have scored 10 minutes before the break when Nacho Novo picked out his run in the box, but he dragged his shot wide.

The Croat then failed to stretch far enough to be able to direct his header on target after Fernando Ricksen's cross had evaded Fabian Cool.

If anything, Rangers' start to the second half was even poorer as they lost a second goal less then two minutes after the break.

Kanga Akale picked up on a loose Khizanishvili header, crossed for Kalou, who spun past Boumsong and slotted the ball past Klos.

Cool saved well from Novo after 62 minutes, with Arveladze just not quick enough to capitalise on the rebound.

The French keeper denied Prso 10 minutes later as he got on the end of an Alan Hutton cross.

With a few minutes remaining, Vignal tested Cool from distance but the keeper was again equal to the task.

Rangers: Klos, Khizanishvili (Hutton 54.00), Andrews, Boumsong, Vignal, Namouchi (Alex Rae 79.00), Ricksen, Malcolm, Arveladze, Novo, Prso.

Subs Not Used: Graeme Smith, Moore, Mladenovic, Ball, Ross.

Booked: Vignal.

Auxerre: Cool, Sagna (Jaures 81.00), Bolf, Mignot, Grichting, Violeau, Cheyrou, Tainio (Gonzales 79.00), Kalou, Akale, Mwaruwari.

Subs Not Used: Chabert, Pieroni, Vandenbosshe, Recorbet, Coulibaly.

Booked: Cheyrou.

Goals: Kalou 10, 47.

Att: 48,847

Ref: Franz Xaver Wack (Germany).

Interview: Rangers boss Alex McLeish

Rangers reject Boumsong offers
15 Dec 04 |  Rangers

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