Rangers are thwarted

Rangers 0 Paris St-Germain 0
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The Independent Football

Rangers are facing yet another early exit from Europe, after a wasteful night at Ibrox against Paris St-Germain in the third round of the Uefa Cup.

Rangers' task was simple – to take a healthy first-leg lead to Paris next month and then survive past Christmas in Europe for the first time in eight years.

The Scottish side set about their task well and should have taken the lead as early as the sixth minute, only to be denied by a timely deflection from the PSG defender Lionel Potillon, who threw himself in the way of Claudio Caniggia's goal-bound effort.

Rangers continued to press and Tore Andre Flo went close with a header. Moments later, Flo opened up the PSG defence to send Caniggia through. The flag stayed down, but instead of shooting the Argentinian elected to try to set up Ronald de Boer for a tap-in. This time the flag went up, but De Boer missed the sitter anyway.

Arthur Numan and Lorenzo Amoruso then both wasted good opportunities as the frustration began to mount. The visitors then carved open a good chance for Hugo Leal but he fired over.

PSG made a change at the break, taking off Cristobal Parralo and sending on Francis Llacer, but the pattern remained the same with Rangers dominating. Claudio Reyna fired wide, but with no breakthrough forthcoming Rangers opted to bring on a third attacker, Peter Lovenkrands.

The substitute forced Lionel Letizi into a save almost immediately, but after chesting the ball down he shot straight at the goalkeeper.

With Rangers' defence now exposed, PSG began to counter with authority. A Bert Konterman tackle stopped Laurent Leroy in the box and Stefan Klos then had to dive to save Leal's shot after a quick French break.

The frustration as another early European exit beckoned finally told, with Rangers' Fernando Ricksen being dismissed for a second booking with 10 minutes left. It capped a miserable night for the Scottish side.

Rangers (5-3-2): Klos; Ricksen, Amoruso, Numan, Konterman, Ball (Lovenkrands, 55); Reyna, De Boer (Ross, 85), Ferguson; Caniggia (Latapy, 70), Flo. Substitutes not used: Christiansen (gk), Mols, Dodds, Wilson.

Paris St-Germain (4-3-3): Letizi; Cristobal (Llacer, h-t), Pochettino, Heinze, Potillon; Arteta, Déhu, Leal; Ronaldinho, Ogbeche (Dias, 78), Leroy (Cissé, 68). Substitutes not used: Aloisio, El Karkouri, Domi, Alonzo (gk).

Referee: K-E Nilsson (Sweden).