Jurgen Klopp says there are no "instant" solutions in football as Liverpool look to bounce back ahead of their Champions League clash with Rangers.

The Reds failed to turn their rough form around upon their return to Premier League action this weekend when they were held to a 3-3 draw by Brighton and Hove Albion.

With just one win in their last four games across all competitions, Klopp's side - FA Cup and EFL Cup winners last term as well as Champions League finalists - risk falling short on multiple fronts this term.

But the German feels his side will be able to work out their problems, stating they must "go back to the basics" and that they cannot expect an immediate revival of fortunes.

"We realised after Napoli it was a real low point, and we had to change things quickly," he stated. "We didn't play Wolves, played Ajax, then didn't play Chelsea and couldn't keep up any momentum from the Ajax win."

"When you spot a problem and think you have the solution, you expect the solution to be instant and influential, that's never the case in football.

"When it doesn't work out, you realise step by step that you have to go back to the basics. We have to be patient again to do the right thing, and then we will be fine again."

Liverpool's mixed form has made it hard for new signing Darwin Nunez to have the desired impact after an early season red card, but Klopp is unconcerned over the forward's personal attributes.

"He is still adapting," he added. "New players come in and everybody talks about them and wants them to shine immediately and that happens from time to time.

"We had a long talk yesterday and we told him we are completely calm. It's really important in our situation that he isn't worrying. The three-game suspension didn't help him to settle, that's clear.

"The team isn't flying and that doesn't make it easier for a striker, especially a finisher. It's not that everything is clicking, that is not our situation at the moment."

Celtic boss Ange Postecoglou declared Celtic will be "hard to stop" if they maintain their current form after watching the Bhoys tear Rangers apart in a 4-0 Old Firm derby success.

A Liel Abada brace, as well as goals from Jota and David Turnbull, moved the scintillating Scottish Premiership champions five points clear of their historic rivals in the early-season table on Saturday.

Celtic are now unbeaten in 38 league games, and have scored 25 goals in their opening six matches of the 2022-23 campaign.

Speaking to the BBC after the win, Postecoglou said: "We have been in excellent form and I'm really proud of the players.

"It was a big game today, we knew that, a big occasion against a really good team, and I thought the boys were outstanding from start to finish."

Asked about the importance of the Hoops' commanding lead over Rangers in the standings, the Australian said: "What's more important to me is how we're playing, every week we've got a little bit better, and that's a good indicator. 

"That's a better indicator. You can win games in many ways and grind things out, but our form's been outstanding.

"If we can keep going like that, we're going to be hard to stop."

Postecoglou's counterpart Giovanni van Bronckhorst, meanwhile, was left deflated by a series of defensive errors as he pledged the Gers will not make the same mistakes in the future.

"You know the start you have is very important in how the game will develop," he said. "We knew the threat they had with quick throw-ins and free-kicks.

"We were exposed twice, which gave two goals away. For me, that's very disappointing. We knew they were going to [restart quickly] and still we weren't prepared enough.

"Everyone needs to reflect in what they did well and what they did wrong, same for me.

"There are still a lot of games to be played, plus three games against Celtic.

"We have to move on, get stronger and make sure the moments we had here never happen again, no matter who we play."

Jurgen Klopp cannot wait for the challenge that awaits Liverpool in their "incredibly competitive and intense" Champions League group.

The Reds are looking to go one better in Europe's premier club competition this season, after losing 1-0 to Real Madrid in last year's final at Stade de France.

Liverpool were placed in Group A during Thursday's draw in Istanbul, alongside Ajax, Napoli and Rangers, who return to the group stages after a 12-year absence.

Klopp expects "a proper, proper challenge" in the group stages of UEFA's flagship club competition, though he is relishing the upcoming task.

"The first thing to say is this is a proper, proper challenge," the Liverpool manager told the club's official website. "All of the clubs have quality, they all have pedigree and I would say they all have a chance.

"The good thing is that we do also, so it makes sense for us to look forward to the challenge and give it a try.

"We did not ask for any favours and we have not been given any, but this is not a competition where you can look for easy ways through because the standard is always unbelievably high.

"The difference this year is that the group stage will be shorter than usual, so we will have to be ready not just for the quality of the opposition, but also for the different demands and rhythms.

"The only certainty right now is that all of the six games will be incredibly competitive and really intense. I'm excited about it. It is a proper football group and, like I said, a proper challenge."

Giovanni van Bronckhorst "couldn't be prouder" after Rangers overcame PSV to book their place in the Champions League group stages.

The Scottish Premier League side are back in the main stages of Europe's premier competition for the first time since the 2010-11 season, having prevailed 3-2 on aggregate against the Dutch giants.

Van Bronckhorst's men held out for a hard-earned 1-0 win at Philips Stadion, with Antonio Colak's 60th-minute strike settling the tie and booking their place in Thursday's draw.

And the Rangers boss was delighted by the efforts of his players, and the control they demonstrated throughout the second leg.

"It feels great to win this game, to get the whistle at the end and to achieve what we wanted," he told BT Sport.

"I was more relaxed than last week because of the way we played. It was very controlled, we played the way we wanted. We scored in the right moment and became stronger and stronger in the game.

"As a player and coach, you're only thinking about competing with the best teams in Europe, and we have the opportunity to do so.

"I'm really happy with the way we played. I couldn't be prouder at the moment."

Meanwhile, matchwinner Colak was reduced to tears after the final whistle. The Croatia international has now scored five goals since arriving from PAOK, although this is undeniably the most important yet.

And Gers' number nine cannot wait for his maiden appearance on Europe's biggest stage in club football, telling BT Sport: "It's difficult to describe in words. 

"It was a great team performance. It's an amazing journey we'll have this year, and I'm so proud of all of these guys.

"I was in tears on the pitch, it was just a moment of joy. As a kid, I always wanted to compete at this level, and to be here is amazing."

Antonio Colak's strike sealed Rangers' return to the Champions League group stages as they edged out PSV 3-2 on aggregate in the play-offs.

Giovanni van Bronckhorst's side are back in the main stages of Europe’s premier competition after a 12-year absence, as Colak settled the second leg at the Philips Stadion.

Malik Tillman robbed Andre Ramalho of possession inside the PSV penalty area on the hour mark, before squaring for the Croatian to apply the finishing touch.

And last season's Europa League finalists held out to inflict only a second home defeat on PSV in 14 matches across all competitions.

Rangers had won just once in their previous 11 away matches in Europe, but went close to scoring despite PSV carrying the greater threat earlier on.

Ryan Kent drew a comfortable save out of Walter Benitez, while a patient build-up culminated in John Lundstram firing narrowly wide from Tillman's lay-off.

PSV, who had struck in the opening period in each of their 11 previous games, finished the half strongly.

Jon McLaughlin was called into action to deny Luuk de Jong, and Cody Gakpo squandered a decent opportunity as he could not keep the ball down from 16 yards.

Rangers were whiskers away from snatching the lead 11 minutes after the restart; Tom Lawrence's curling 20-yard strike rattling the crossbar with Benitez beaten.

But the visitors did edge their noses in front on the hour mark, Tillman stealing possession inside the PSV area before squaring for Colak to slot into the empty net.

Tillman went close to doubling the lead soon after when Benitez held onto his vicious low drive before PSV threatened the equaliser.

An unmarked Philipp Max volleyed wide from close range, while McLaughlin demonstrated brilliant reflexes to keep out Gakpo as Rangers stood firm to secure their return to European football's top table.

Rangers captain James Tavernier has reaffirmed his commitment to the Scottish Premiership giants by signing a new long-term deal.

The 30-year-old is into his eighth season at Ibrox and has been a regular in each of those, during which time he has helped Rangers win four trophies.

Tavernier, the last remaining player from Rangers' time in the lower divisions of Scottish football, was only under contract until the end of next season.

However, Rangers announced on Wednesday that the right-back has agreed fresh terms on a deal that will take him to a decade in Glasgow.

"I just want to spend more years here and have that security," Tavernier, who has made 353 appearances for Rangers, told the club's official website.

"It is such a great place to play football and I can't wait to see what the coming years have to bring.

"I am settled here, my family are settled here, so it was a no-brainer to get the contact extension over the line."

Tavernier skippered Rangers to the Scottish Premiership title two seasons ago and led the team in last season's Europa League final defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt.

He previously represented the likes of Newcastle United, Sheffield Wednesday, Rotherham United, Wigan Athletic and Bristol City.

Ruud van Nistelrooy was "proud" to be able to coach in front of his former Manchester United boss, Alex Ferguson, during PSV's Champions League play-off first leg against Rangers.

Ferguson was in attendance at Ibrox as the teams played out a 2-2 draw on Tuesday.

Antonio Colak equalised after Ibrahim Sangare's opener in the first half before Tom Lawrence gave the Scottish side the lead, though Van Nistelrooy's team had something to take back for the second leg next week after Armando Obispo headed in a leveller 12 minutes from time.

The former Netherlands striker was appointed as PSV head coach from the start of the season to replace Roger Schmidt, his first senior role in management.

Van Nistelrooy played 219 games for United in all competitions under Ferguson between 2001 and 2006, scoring 150 goals, and said at his post-match press conference it was a "proud moment" for him to be in the dugout knowing his former manager was watching on.

"Oh, my goodness no, one per cent, maybe, one per cent," he said when asked if he would like to be half as good a manager as Ferguson. 

"It was a proud moment for me that he actually watched me coach my team and manage my team and I'm glad as well. I spoke to him just briefly. He's well, he's looking great. He's doing well, his family as well. So it's great to see him.

"That he sees me down the touchline at Ibrox for me is a proud moment."

The 46-year-old also explained how much he had learned from Ferguson, who won 13 Premier League titles, five FA Cups, four EFL Cups and two Champions Leagues during his long tenure at Old Trafford before retiring in 2013.

"The thing is, as a player, you learn an unbelievable amount of things from him," he said. "And when you start to develop yourself as a coach then obviously you look back at moments.

"'Where were the managers I had? What did they do, and how did they form a team?' And the style of play and managing an individual, and he's such an example in that sense."

Van Nistelrooy, whose 44 goals in all competitions in the 2002-03 season still stands as a record for a Premier League player in a single campaign, was happy enough with his team's effort in the first leg in Glasgow, and is glad to have home advantage with the scores level ahead of next week's reverse fixture.

"We know what it is like with a great support behind us," he added. "That was today as well for Rangers. During some spells in the game the crowd lifted the team in such a way that is hard. I mean, you really notice it. There are not many places where you feel it like this.

"Of course, next week we will have that support. But both teams are very level in quality and with playing styles. It is reduced to one game now with the final at home. We have to prepare and be at our best."

Armando Obispo's header denied Rangers as they were held to a 2-2 draw by PSV in the first leg of their Champions League play-off tie at Ibrox.

Seeking a first group-stage appearance in four years, Ruud van Nistelrooy's side took a 37th-minute lead as Ibrahim Sangare scooped the ball home after Rangers failed to deal with a corner.

But the hosts responded within three minutes following a neat one-touch move that culminated in Antonio Colak sweeping home his fourth goal in as many matches.

Giovanni van Bronckhorst's men edged ahead in fortuitous circumstances 20 minutes from time; Walter Benitez fumbling Tom Lawrence's ambitious free-kick into his own net.

However, Obispo levelled matters eight minutes later when he headed in Cody Gakpo's corner to leave the tie finely poised ahead of the second leg in Eindhoven next week.

Ajax have signed Calvin Bassey from Rangers for a fee of €23million (£19.6m) that could rise to €26.5m (£22.6m) with add-ons.

The 22-year-old defender is likely to be the replacement for Lisandro Martinez, who is close to sealing a move to Manchester United to be reunited with former boss Erik ten Hag.

Bassey has signed a five-year-deal at the Johan Cruyff Arena, and the Eredivisie champions confirmed he has already joined his new team-mates in Austria at their pre-season training camp.

Though born in Italy, Bassey is a Nigeria international, and became a regular at Rangers last season as he starred in their run to the Europa League final, dispatching the likes of Borussia Dortmund, Braga and RB Leipzig along the way.

Giovanni van Bronckhorst's men ultimately lost in Seville to Eintracht Frankfurt on penalties, but Bassey impressed on the night and had been subject of interest from several clubs across Europe during the transfer window.

He made 65 appearances in all for Rangers after signing from Leicester City in 2020, winning the Scottish Premiership in 2020-21 and the Scottish Cup last season.

Rangers moved to replace Bassey on Tuesday when they signed centre-back Ben Davies from Liverpool for a fee of £3m, with a further £1m in add-ons.

Former Rangers and Scotland goalkeeper Andy Goram has passed away aged 58 after a short battle with cancer.

The ex-Gers shot stopper revealed in May that he had been given a terminal diagnosis of stage four oesophageal cancer and had less than six months to live.

"The thoughts of the directors, management, players and staff are today with Andy's family, and would ask that their privacy is respected at this sad time," Rangers said in a statement on Saturday.

Goram is fondly remembered for his seven-year spell at Ibrox between 1991 and 1998, when he was a five-time league champion, as well as winning three Scottish Cups and two Scottish League Cups.

He turned in a string of impressive performances in the first iteration of the Champions League, helping Rangers to a second-place group finish, a point off qualifying for the final.

Goram became something of a journeyman player following the end of his tenure in Glasgow, and became a Premier League winner in 2001 after a short loan spell with Manchester United.

At international level, he won 43 caps and was named in the squads for the Mexico 1986 and Italia 1990 World Cups, plus Euro 1992 and Euro 1996, when he was first-choice goalkeeper.

Goram was a member of the Scottish Football Hall of Fame, and was also named both the Scottish PFA and Football Writers’ Player of the Year in 1992-93 for his efforts in Rangers' treble-winning campaign.

Rangers say only the "mutual respect of both sets of fans" prevented more severe problems from occurring when the Europa League final was staged in Seville this month.

Eintracht Frankfurt were crowned champions when they beat the Glasgow giants 5-4 on penalties at Estadio Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan on May 18.

Representatives of Rangers, the Bundesliga club and Football Supporters Europe (FSE) met last Friday to debrief and discuss "several significant organisational issues" during the final.

Rangers on Monday stated that fans were not treated with the respect and dignity that they should have been.

"Supporters Europe (FSE) met to debrief and discuss several significant organisational issues during the recent UEFA Europa League final in Sevilla," a club statement said.

"These issues could easily have led to even more severe problems on the night and it was only thanks to the calmness and mutual respect of both sets of fans towards each other that there were not more severe injuries suffered. All three parties applaud the remarkable calmness of the two fan bases, given the situation they faced.

"Apart from the severe lack of food and – even more critically in the soaring temperatures – of water, there were several organisational problems around policing, body searches and beyond. Both clubs, as well as FSE, received a huge amount of complaints and witness statements from fans present in the stadium.

"All three parties will now work jointly to report back to UEFA and the local public authorities in Spain, and will make recommendations to ensure these problems can never occur again at a European final.

"Fans spend a lot of effort, time and money following their teams all over Europe and expect to be treated with respect and dignity while attending football games. This expectation was not met at all at the Europa League final in Sevilla."

UEFA have come in for criticism following chaotic scenes outside the Stade de France ahead of the Champions League final between Real Madrid and Liverpool on Saturday.

Former Rangers and Scotland goalkeeper Andy Goram has been given six months to live after being diagnosed with terminal cancer.

Goram revealed in an interview with the Daily Record he has stage four oesophageal cancer.

The 58-year-old - who also had a loan spell with Manchester United in 2001 - has said he will "fight like I've never fought before."

"I'll be here as long as I possibly can," he said. "I'll fight like I've never fought before. The only difference is the time bomb ticking away.

"I thought I had severe indigestion. It was as though my gullet was blocked. After a few weeks, it got worse and nothing was getting through.

"Everything I ate or drank didn't get halfway to my stomach and I threw it back up. I couldn't get a face-to-face with my GP for two weeks, by which time I was in total agony. I'd also lost four stone in four weeks.

"I had a CT scan at Monklands, then was rushed to Wishaw General and told my next of kin should be with me. That is when the alarm bells started ringing. I realised I had cancer."

During a seven-year spell with Rangers, Goram won five league titles, three Scottish Cups and two Scottish League Cups.

He also made 43 appearances for Scotland, and was selected for the 1986 and 1990 World Cups, as well the Euro 1992 and 1996.

Goram said he has been told he has been given an estimation of six months to live, and has turned down chemotherapy.

"The specialist said if I take the chemotherapy, I've an average of nine months to go – an average," he said. "If I don't take the chemo, I have an average of six.

"Take chemotherapy and be in agony for the sake of an extra three months and zero quality of life? No thanks. Chemotherapy is off the menu."

Aaron Ramsey has the character to put his penalty miss in Rangers' Europa League final shoot-out defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt behind him, according to Wales boss Rob Page.

The on-loan Juventus midfielder, brought on in the second half of extra time, missed the only spot-kick as Frankfurt prevailed 5-4 in a game that finished level at 1-1 in Seville on Wednesday.

It marked the first time Rangers had tasted defeat on penalties in European competition since the 1999-2000 UEFA Cup when losing to Borussia Dortmund in the last 32.

Ramsey was visibly upset after Rafael Borre converted the decisive penalty for Frankfurt, who are the first German team to win the UEFA Cup or Europa League since Schalke in 1996-97.

But Page insists he has no worries about selecting the 31-year-old to take a penalty should Wales' upcoming World Cup qualifying play-off against either Scotland or Ukraine go the distance.

"I have no doubt whatsoever that if it comes to penalties that he will take one," Page said at a news conference on Thursday after naming his 27-man squad for that June 5 showdown in Cardiff.

Asked if he still has faith in Ramsey, Page said: "Absolutely, 100 per cent. It happens to the best in the world. Top players, they put themselves up.

"I am so proud of him for putting himself up [to take a penalty]. He is a world-class footballer. He had the courage and conviction to take a penalty. Top players recover from that, no problem."

Ramsey is part of Wales' latest squad, as is Gareth Bale, who will become a free agent when his Real Madrid contract expires in the coming weeks.

Bale's agent this week suggested a return to English football is the most likely option, with the forward aiming to keep fit ahead of November's World Cup should Wales qualify for the tournament for the first time in 64 years.

"I think everybody is probably thinking the same thing about his future," Page said. "It will depend on how results go with regards to what he does next season with a club.

"The only person who can answer that is Gareth. All I know is whenever he turns up for us he is first class. The full focus on himself is winning this game against Ukraine or Scotland, so he can worry about that after."

Bale has started just four games for Madrid in all competitions this season and has not been part of their matchday squad for any of their past five games because of a back problem.

The Wales skipper is back in training, however, and Page expects him to be part of Los Blancos' squad for next week's Champions League final against Liverpool in Paris.

"I think Gareth puts himself when he is fit to be available for Real Madrid like he does with us," Page said. "It is down to the manager then whether he wants to select him or not in the squad. 

"I think he is confident he will be involved and we will wait and see whether he is involved. We will then get him in camp as soon as we can."

In a pre-match news conference lacking much talk of the opposition, there was one question that stood out in that regard ahead of Rangers' Europa League final clash with Eintracht Frankfurt.

Gers captain James Tavernier was pointedly asked for his opinion on Eintracht wing-back Filip Kostic, given the pair are likely to see a lot of each other on the flank they'll share.

"Obviously I respect how he's been playing, he's a top player," Tavernier said. "But, I've just got to bring the best version of myself when the game starts and try to cause him all the problems, try to make him deal with me for the majority of the game. That's all I can really do."

Tavernier's response didn't offer any particularly great insight, but his mentality of wanting to cause Kostic as many problems was at least another identifier of how their duel could be such a key battle.

Of course, it's worth pointing out that Tavernier, a right-back, remarkably heads into Wednesday's game as the Europa League's top scorer on seven goals, and realistically – or, unrealistically – only a hat-trick from Eintracht's Daichi Kamada can prevent the Englishman from at least ending the season with a share of the competition's golden boot.

Further to that, he netted 19 times over the course of the 2020-21 season and could yet match that figure this term – he also has an impressive assists haul of 17.

If it needs reiterating, he's a huge contributor for Rangers in the final third.

So, given he's technically a right-back, there's obviously an element of Tavernier needing to be solid defensively on Wednesday, but some might suggest it's even more essential he's as sharp as ever going forward as that would not only give Rangers a credible threat on the right, but it would potentially keep Kostic occupied in a deeper position.

Granted, Eintracht's set-up with a back three should always ensure they have an extra man to cover for Kostic's runs forward, while the two attacking midfielders supporting Rafael Borre up top often occupy narrow, deeper berths in order to maximise the space out wide for their biggest threat.

Yet there's always the possibility of an overload in behind Kostic if the conditions are right, such is his attacking influence.

 

After all, the frequency at which Kostic delivers into the box is frankly astonishing. This season, he has been the executor of 519 crosses and corners, 140 more than any other player in the top five leagues – Trent Alexander-Arnold is second with 379.

Kostic's 78 successful crosses from open play is also a season-high. Of course, you would expect him to lead the way given he's attempted so many more than anyone else, but his 26.8 per cent accuracy (crosses/corners) is right in line with the average (among players with at least 100 attempted). That in itself is impressive given his greater frequency.

Another way of looking at it is, he is producing one accurate open-play cross every 45.4 minutes. While that may not sound incredible on the face of it, his 12.4 expected assists (xA) is the 10th highest among players in the top five leagues, highlighting just how much of a weapon he is in terms of his creative quality.

So, while he may be classed as a wing-back in terms of his position on a team line-up graphic, the Serbian is there for his attacking tendencies.

A cursory glance at his map of open-play chances created proves that point.

 

But Rangers must also be aware of the danger posed on the opposite flank.

Ansgar Knauff has been one of the stars of Eintracht's journey to the final, with the 20-year-old becoming something of a revelation in the past few months.

As recently as mid-January he was turning out for Borussia Dortmund's second team in the third tier. Then he joined Eintracht on loan and has since scored important Europa League goals against Barcelona and West Ham.

His impact on the road to Seville has been significant, with his brilliant athleticism, bravery and confidence on the ball making him a real asset on the right-hand side.

Before Knauff's arrival, Eintracht were rather lopsided, with their other options on the right far from convincing. Sure, Kostic remains their main outlet, but Knauff's emergence has provided them with another – albeit stylistically different – threat on the other side, giving them greater balance.

 

Across all competitions since his Eintracht debut in early February, only Kostic (5.6) and Jesper Lindstrom (2.6) have amassed better xA records than Knauff, who is also fifth to those two, Borre and Kamada in terms of xA and xG (expected goals) combined.

He may not be their deadliest weapon, but he's proven he can offer them a lot, and his team-high 61 dribble attempts in that period proves he's happy to make his markers work for their money.

Oliver Glasner's team is full of neat, technical players and is also blessed with fine work ethic, as it would need to be to play their high-pressing football.

But their width and desire to attack from the flanks is fundamental to how they play – while it may be easier said than done, limiting their effectiveness out wide would go a long way to ending Rangers' 50-year European trophy drought.

Eintracht Frankfurt coach Oliver Glasner assured Evan Ndicka had not suffered an injury that would keep him out of the Europa League final after the defender hobbled off on Saturday.

Frankfurt's focus turns towards Wednesday's showpiece against Rangers in Seville after their Bundesliga campaign concluded with a 2-2 draw against Mainz.

But there was momentary concern during the final match of the league season as Ndicka had to be substituted.

Ndicka, who has been linked to both Manchester United and Newcastle United, will have a key role to play if Frankfurt are to beat Rangers to the trophy.

And Glasner had positive news on the 22-year-old's condition afterwards, saying: "It's nothing bad – he has blisters on his feet. Everyone came out well."

The coach confirmed all his players were "fit" following the match – including, perhaps, midfielder Jesper Lindstrom, who has not played since the European semi-final first leg against West Ham due to a hamstring injury.

"He looks pretty good," Glasner said. "Everything is going according to plan."

However, he wants to see Lindstrom on the training pitch in the coming days if the Denmark international is to play any part in midweek.

"Only from the couch and from the massage table, it is not possible," Glasner added.

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