Rangers might not be holding out for Europa League qualification v Ajax, but there is still plenty of incentive heading into the Champions League clash.

Not least financially, with the tie worth around £2.5m to any winner, an amount which is almost the same as what Rangers would receive for winning the Scottish Premiership.

Photo by ANDY BUCHANAN/AFP via Getty Images

The lucrative nature of the Champions League has been poured over significantly but whilst Rangers’ pride has been hurt by the nature of their recent batterings in the competition, so has our wallet.

Having been unable to register a single point in the competition, Rangers have not been able to secure an additional £2.5m per win or even the £800k teams receive for a draw [UEFA].

Despite this, Rangers do still have a very outside chance of Europa League qualification, with Ajax only registering three points in the competition after hammering the Gers 4-0 in Amsterdam.

In order for Rangers to qualify for the Europa League by finishing 3rd, as a result of that battering in the Netherlands the Gers would need to win by a five-goal margin.

Ajax boss defends Rangers rival ahead of Champions League clash

It’s interesting that both Rangers and Ajax have struggled to cope with Napoli and Liverpool in the group with Alfred Schreuder saying as much ahead of this game.

Rangers boss Giovanni van Bronckhorst was heavily criticised for claiming the Ibrox side cannot compete with the clubs at this level and its a feeling echoed from an Ajax perspective.

Whilst the Dutch club have more recent experience in the Champions League, Schreuder insists his side cannot realistically compete with Liverpool and Napoli.

“In a way (Van Bronckhorst) is right, they lost players in the summer as well, and we bought one of them in Calvin Bassey,” said Schreuder.

“Still, before the first game everyone was looking at it as a 50/50 because they beat PSV, that was a great result.

“Then they come in the Champions League and expectations are high.

“But you also have to be realistic if you’re in a group with Liverpool and Napoli like us.

“This game can be totally different to the first game, but from our point of view, we need to be ready from the start.

”We have analysed the home match against Rangers. We were in good form and it went well.

“The most important thing is how we are on the field in this game — and that is what we are focusing on.”

As Rangers prepare to face Ajax, the club have been devastated by injuries in a key position.

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