Carlos Cuellar has denied that the quality of opposition Rangers face in the Scottish Premier League makes them ill-equipped to face teams as mighty as Barcelona.
The former Villarreal defender Cuellar returned to Spain but could not prevent a 2-0 defeat in the Champions League at the Nou Camp on Wednesday. But he said: "There are always teams like Barça who are that much better and I don't think that it is [due to] a lack of competition domestically that we struggled.
"We knew it was going to be a very difficult game and then it was made worse by the early goal. We were pressed back and couldn't make chances of our own. They made good use of the ball and it was hard."
Cuellar admitted that Rangers had been overwhelmed. "Ronaldinho, Messi, Henry... these are all fantastic players and it is impossible to pick out any who created more danger than another."
The midfielder Brahim Hemdani was keen to stress that Rangers are still well placed to reach the last 16. Despite the defeat to Barcelona, the Glasgow club are still second in the group standings, a point clear of third-placed Lyons.
Rangers' next match is away to VfB Stuttgart, and a win there, combined with a Barcelona victory over Lyons, would take Walter Smith's men through to the knockout stages.
Hemdani said: "They deserved the victory for the way they played and we tried our best, but it wasn't enough. Still, we are in a good position in the group and we knew that even before we played that it would not be the end if we lost. We will have to get the points against Stuttgart. We are still confident that we will go through."Reuse content