Walter Smith refuses to give up hope


Walter Smith has not given up hope of reaching the last 16 of the Champions League even after watching his Rangers team slump to a 3-0 defeat to Valencia in the Mestalla.

Victory against Bursaspor and draws with Los Che and Manchester United had raised hopes of the Gers reaching the knockout stages of the competition, but that now appears unlikely after the result in Spain.

Smith is aware of the difficult task his side now faces, saying after the loss:"We need circumstances to go with us if we're going to win games in the Champions League. That didn't happen here and Valencia took their chances to score.

"Steven Naismith had a good opportunity at the start of the match and, if that had gone in things might have been different. But credit to their keeper for making a fantastic stop.

"Steven then had a header which could have caused a bit of nervousness in the latter stages of the match. But it wasn't to be and, in the end, we can't have too many complaints about the final result. Valencia played very well and we can do better but we can't dwell on this result.

"We have a difficult game against Manchester United at home next and they look as though they've qualified. So we'll wait and see what happens but we'll aim to acquit ourselves well in our remaining games.

"We still have a chance to put pressure on Valencia in terms of getting that second spot in Group C. It will be a big ask for us to do that now when you consider we play Manchester United and Valencia will probably be favourites to beat Bursaspor.

"We need results to go for us but we just have to go out and try to win the games and play better than we did tonight."

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