Rangers’ defeat by Ajax sets new low and seals Champions League misery

Ajax made sure of a place in the Europa League after beating Rangers 3-1 at Ibrox on Tuesday to heap further Champions League misery on the Scottish club.

Ajax finished third in Group A, behind Napoli and Liverpool, and will compete in the Europa League knockout round playoffs as Rangers finished bottom after losing all six group games – the first Scottish side to suffer the fate – and returned the worst figures in the three decades of Champions League group competition.

Steven Berghuis put Ajax ahead with a miscued effort in the fourth minute after being teed up by Mohammed Kudus, who then added a second with a deflected shot in the 29th minute.

Rangers captain James Tavernier pulled one back from the penalty spot four minutes from time, for only their second goal of the group stage, but Ajax restored their two-goal advantage through teenage substitute Francisco Conceição two minutes after.

Rangers, who needed to win by five goals to move above Ajax and take the Europa League berth, were jeered off at half-time.

They conceded 22 goals in their six group games for a goal difference of minus 20, which beats the previous worst group return by Dinamo Zagreb in the 2011-12 campaign when they lost all six games and finished with a goal difference of minus 19.

Czech club Viktoria Plzen also lost all six games this season with a minus 19 goal difference after losing 4-2 at home to Barcelona on Tuesday.


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