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‘TREAT IT LIKE A CUP FINAL,’ CAIXINHA TELLS PLAYERS

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RANGERS manager Pedro Caixinha has told his players they will win the crucial match tomorrow evening in Luxembourg against local minnows Progrès Niederkorn if they start well and treat the 90 minutes like a cup final.

Surprisingly the tie is on a knife-edge after a solitary Kenny Miller strike at Ibrox last midweek was all Caixinha’s side has to show for their efforts in the Europa League’s first qualifying round.

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“You need to get on this game like it is a final – you are drawing the game and the team that wins, wins the trophy. That is the way we need to think about it,” the Portuguese boss said.

“We know what to expect now and we think they are going to behave the same way.

“Most of the time you put on an opponent’s mind in order to see what they are going to do and how they are going to perform in order to organise the game, and I think they are going to do the same.

“That was the point to which we worked, knowing what to expect, and we have worked on going a little bit more out to occupy spaces, explore spaces and be better in the last third,” Caixinha stated.

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“We need to do exactly the same, and with those points in consideration, we need to play quickly and we need to be more aggressive on our offensive style.

“Sometimes we have to be more direct, looking even more to the goal than to preparing the build-up to the attack when it is not needed. And, we want to start strongly in order to impose our game on our opponent, and try to score as soon as possible,” said Caixinha.

“So after six years, the first match of the season, and the first European match for many players in the squad, we did very well, and tomorrow, I think we will do even better.

“We are leading the game and we are not worried about the away goal. We are just worried about developing our process, and of course, always thinking about winning the game and by winning the game you have the away goal present.”

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