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Page last updated at 21:58 GMT, Wednesday, 20 October 2010 22:58 UK

Rangers' Maurice Edu hopeful of European progress


Edu happy to take one point

Maurice Edu cancelled out his opener against Valencia with an own goal but expressed confidence that Rangers can progress in the Champions League.

The 1-1 draw leaves the Glasgow side second in Group C, behind Manchester United but ahead of the Spaniards.

"We've got to be optimistic," the midfielder said. "We've played three tough matches and had decent results.

"We were unlucky not to win, so we'll take confidence and head over there and try to put on another good display."

Edu's goals both came from headers, taking a punch from Valencia goalkeeper Cesar Sanchez in the process as he opened the scoring after 34 minutes, then providing an unfortunate equaliser a minute after the break.

"The first goal I didn't have time to celebrate because I took a knock on the head and was laid on the ground for a while," stated Edu.

I feel a little bit disappointed that we did not take the three points with the chances we created

Rangers manager Walter Smith

"The own goal, I saw it late and the next thing I know it hit me and it was in.

"I was trying to mark the guy in front of me and it looked like he was going to get it and at the last minute it hit me.

"That was obviously disappointing, but we kept going and created more chances."

Rangers passed up a string of chances to open up a commanding four-point lead over Valencia.

But Edu stressed: "We're pleased that we have played the way we did. We didn't just sit back and absorb pressure.

"We tried to go forward and create chances. We're definitely disappointed because I thought we created the more dangerous chances and we were unlucky not to finish a couple more."

Rangers manager Walter Smith was pleased with his side's display while admitting that Valencia had chances of their own.

"Maybe, over the piece, ours were the more clear-cut ones," he said.

"I feel a little bit disappointed that we did not take the three points with the chances we created.

"After a settling in period when we were a bit nervy, I was delighted with the way we played."

Smith has adopted a five-man defence for Rangers' European games this season and received criticism in some quarters for the formation that secured an opening-game point against United at Old Trafford.

However, he believes that they have become more comfortable with the system and are now becoming a greater threat on the break.

"We are delighted with the way we are playing at the moment and hopefully we can continue it," stated Smith.

"Our team overall made us difficult to beat and, when we had an opportunity to go forward, we did so with good purpose."

Smith still believes Rangers face a difficult task to deny either United or Valencia a qualifying place.

"We will have to do exceptionally well to get between those two," he commented.

"We face two away games and one at home, so it will be a difficult task in the last three games.

"If we can play as well as we have in the first three games, we have an opportunity, but it is no more than that.

"There were a few yellow cards tonight and, if we start to get suspensions, that can affect us."

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see also
Rangers 1-1 Valencia
20 Oct 10 |  Rangers
Rangers v Valencia - as it happened
20 Oct 10 |  Scottish Premier
Rangers return crunch tie - Emery
21 Oct 10 |  Rangers
Rangers up for Valencia test
18 Oct 10 |  Rangers
Valencia star in awe of McGregor
17 Oct 10 |  Rangers

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