Willem II host Scottish side Rangers in the third qualifying round of the Europa League on Thursday. Kick-off is at 8 pm.

Last week, Willem II returned to European competition, for the first time in 15 years, in style, hammering Progres Niederkorn 5-0 to book their place in the third qualifying round.

Adrie Koster’s side are now two games away from the group stages of the competition, starting with Scottish giants Rangers FC on Thursday.

The Glasgow-based side, coached by Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard, finished second in the Scottish Premier League last season, and had to see off Lincoln Red Imps to book their meeting with Willem II.

Rangers went on a good run in the competition last season, reaching the last 16 before losing out to Bayer Leverkusen. Along the way they met Feyenoord, winning 1-0 in Glasgow and drawing 2-2 in Rotterdam.

Willem II go into the game on the back of a 4-0 victory over Heracles Almelo at the weekend, while Rangers struggled to a 2-2 draw at Hibernian.

Koster believes his side is full of confidence and is aiming for a victory, “European matches are special matches.Β After the victory over Heracles, this match became even more alive for players and trainers.Β We want to enjoy it, but more importantly, we want to win.Β We certainly see a chance against the Rangers for that.”

The winner of the clash on Thursday will face either Galatasaray or Hadjuk Split for a place in the group stages.

Team News

Willem II head into the game still without summer signings Leeroy Owusu and Kwasi Wriedt. However, they have no fresh injury concerns and could line up in the same way as the weekend.

Possible Willem II line-up: Ruiter, Van den Bogert, Kohn, Peters, Holmen, Llonch, Saglam, Tresor, Nunnely, Kohlert, Pavlidis

Rangers will be without Ryan Jack, Leon Balogun and Joe Aribo. It is likely striker Kemar Roofe will also miss the game along with Brandon Barker.

Possible Rangers line-up: McLaughlin, Tavernier, Barisic, Goldson, Helander, Davis, Arfield, Kamara, Hagi, Kent, Morelos


Willem II 3/1 Draw 14/5 Rangers 5/6

Can Willem II get past Rangers?

Rangers are an experienced and physical side, who will go into the game as firm favourites with the bookmakers.

However, in a one-off clash in Tilburg anything can happen and there is no reason why Willem II cannot defeat the Scottish side if they continue to play like they did at the weekend.

Vangelis Pavlidis is in great form up front for Tilburg, while Che Nunnely and Mats Kohlert on the wings have plenty of pace to effect the Rangers defence.

Morelos will be a big threat up front for Rangers, but if the defence can stay strong, then Willem II can achieve a historic victory.

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