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Rangers 3-1 Leipzig (agg: 3-2): Lundstram fires late winner for Scottish champions

Rangers overturned a first-leg deficit to reach their first European final for 14 years.

UEL 2021/22 - Highlight - Medium
Highlights: Rangers 3-1 Leipzig

Rangers booked a UEFA Europa League final against Eintracht Frankfurt with a stunning 3-1 victory at home to Leipzig, Giovanni van Bronckhorst's men overturning their 1-0 deficit from the first leg.

Key moments

19': Tavernier hauls Rangers level on aggregate
24'
: Kamara curls home side into aggregate lead
71'
: Nkunku volleys Leipzig back into game
81': Lundstram drives in decisive goal

Match in brief: Rangers rejoice on electric night at Ibrox

James Tavernier celebrates after scoring the opening goal for Rangers
James Tavernier celebrates after scoring the opening goal for RangersAFP via Getty Images

The Ibrox faithful demanded a quick start and their team did not disappoint. Just when Leipzig thought they had quelled the early storm, the home side struck twice in six minutes to turn an aggregate deficit into an overall lead.

James Tavernier's seventh European goal of the campaign broke the deadlock as he turned in Ryan Kent's low cross at the far post and the visitors had not recovered by the time Glen Kamara calmly swept the second past Péter Gulácsi from the edge of the area. 

The German side were more composed after the interval and restored parity in the tie when Christopher Nkunku expertly volleyed in Angeliño's cross for his 32nd goal of the season in all competitions.

Domenico Tedesco's men appeared more likely to seal a place in the Seville showpiece at that point but Rangers regrouped and struck the decisive blow when John Lundstram fired in after the visitors failed to clear Kent's deflected cross.  

Glen Kamara enjoys making it 2-0 to Rangers
Glen Kamara enjoys making it 2-0 to RangersAFP via Getty Images
As it happened: Rangers 3-1 Leipzig


Alex O'Henley, Rangers reporter

Another roller-coaster night at Ibrox but it ends with Rangers in a European final for the first time since 2008. Tavernier and Kamara looked to have the Light Blues on course for Seville until Nkunku levelled the tie on aggregate, but with nine minutes remaining Lundstram scored a decisive third to leave Rangers in dreamland.

James Thorogood, Leipzig reporter

They had their fate in their own hands before kick-off, but when the chance at history came calling, Leipzig could not answer. Tedesco's charges were battling both Rangers and the emotions of the night and they lost on both fronts, but it was their inability to take their chances across the 180 minutes that cost them a place in their first ever European final.

Reaction 

James Tavernier, Rangers captain: "I always work at getting in at the back post. I thought I missed out in the first leg but I was right there tonight. You reach the final for a reason so we're upbeat. We are full of confidence and we are going to give it absolutely everything we've got."

Tavernier: 'We fancy ourselves to win'
Tavernier: 'We fancy ourselves to win'

John Lundstram, Rangers midfielder: "I came in with a good feeling but to actually go out and do it, I can't put it into words. We've been through so many ups and downs this season but to come through it and reach a Europa League final, wow. It's my best night by a country mile."

Yussuf Poulsen, Leipzig striker: "It makes a difference when they get the first goal but we were not prepared enough for the challenge. We had the belief all the way through, even at half-time although we were 2-0 behind, but it wasn't our night. All three goals could have been defended better. It was a bad night for us."

Ally McCoist, BT Sport

"I came here full of hope but said to myself this is a top team they were playing. But good organisation, great spirit and you can go a long way."

Christopher Nkunku roars after pulling it back to 2-1
Christopher Nkunku roars after pulling it back to 2-1AFP via Getty Images

Key stats

  • Rangers have scored inside of the opening 23 minutes in each of their last six Europa League home games.
  • Tavernier has opened the scoring in each of Rangers' four home games in the knockout phase this season.
  • Tavernier is now the top scorer in this season's competition with seven goals, all in the knockout rounds
  • The Scottish side have also scored two or more goals in their last six Europa League home games.
  • Leipzig have only failed to score in two of their last 18 Europa League matches.

Line-ups

Rangers: McGregor; Tavernier, Goldson, Bassey, Barišic; Jack (Arfield 58), Lundstram, Kamara; Wright (Balogun 59), Aribo (Sakala 45+2), Kent

Leipzig: Gulácsi; Gvardiol, Orbán, Klostermann; Henrichs, Kampl, Laimer, Angeliño (André Silva 81); Nkunku, Olmo (Szoboszlai 61); Poulsen (Halstenberg 82)

When and where is the Europa League final?

This season's final against Frankfurt takes place at the Ramón Sánchez-Pizjuán Stadium in Seville. The game will kick off at 21:00 CET on Wednesday 18 May.