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ALVES READY FOR RANGERS CHALLENGE

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BRUNO ALVES has paid support to the Rangers manager Pedro Caixinha amid criticism following their European exit to Progres Niederkorn.

The Portuguese stopper, who missed the 2-1 aggregate defeat whilst on international duty, has reported for duty at Auchenhowie as the Light Blues begin preparing for the start of the season in a fortnight.

“Even if we didn’t play European games of course I would have joined this club.”

Asked if the exit was frustrating, Alves revealed his expectations to play in the Europa League with Rangers.

“It was because I have expectations to play European games but it was not this year.

“Maybe it is going to be next year. We need to be focused now.”

“I already know how big is this club and for me I am proud to come here and join this team,” Alves said.

The 35-year-old was confident that despite the club’s poor showing last season and in Europe, the team were training hard and looking forward to the new season.

“Everybody has good expectations for the season and we are working very hard to achieve what we propose to do.

“I can bring my experience and what I have learned in football.

“I have won with almost all of the clubs I have played with and I hope to bring that again to this big club.

“I am looking forward to putting the jersey on and playing and giving my best and also learn because football is continuous learning. It is going to be a good experience for myself.”

Alves is one of nine signings brought in by Pedro Caixinha to attempt to break into the top two after finishing third last season.

Rangers face Marseille at Ibrox on Saturday then a trip to Hillsborough to face Sheffield Wednesday on the 30th before they kick of the Ladbrokes Premiership away to Motherwell.

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