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Forget Kamara: Rangers’ James Tavernier let Steven Gerrard down v Sparta Prague

Rangers suffered their second successive defeat of the Europa League group stage as they went down 1-0 to Sparta Prague on Thursday night.

Steven Gerrard’s side went behind to David Hancko’s first half header and Glen Kamara was harshly sent off for a second bookable offence after the break.

While the Finland international’s dismissal certainly didn’t help the Gers in their quest to find a potential equaliser, James Tavernier’s performance at the back was nowhere near the standard that Gerrard needed in a tough European game away from home.

The club captain was his usual adventurous self going forward, but that lack of discipline in knowing when to stay and when to advance saw the Gers full-back get caught out time and time again on his flank.

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James Tavernier in action for Rangers

How well do you know James Tavernier's Rangers career? - 1. From which side did Rangers sign Tavernier?

As per Sofascore, he lost possession 36 times over the course of the game, which was by far the highest of any player on the pitch, while his crossing radar was woefully off the mark too – none of his seven attempts found their intended target.

Tavernier was also dribbled past three times, the most out of any of his Rangers teammates, while he made only one tackle as his lack of defensive responsibility came back to haunt him.

Writing in his post-match player ratings for the Glasgow Times, Ewan Patton gave him a six, saying: “Looked good going forward as per, but, particularly in the second half, was caught out of position defensively. This allowed Sparta’s attackers in behind on too many occasions. But for good goalkeeping and poor finishing – including a sitter from Pesek, Sparta could’ve won by more.”

Those sentiments were echoed by the Daily Record’s Andrew Newport, who also gave him a six, adding: “Got forward plenty in the early stages but found himself pinned down in the second half as his centre-backs wobbled.”

While the big talking point after the game might be Kamara’s controversial sending-off, Tavernier let his manager down with a really poor display.

Meanwhile, Rangers could find another Kamara in this star…

Article title: Forget Kamara: Rangers’ James Tavernier let Steven Gerrard down v Sparta Prague

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