Whilst Rangers fans might be nervous about their own club’s form heading into a crunch Europa League clash with Sparta Prague, they can take a boost from the Czech side’s current run.

Rangers might be going into the potentially group-defining clash against Sparta on the back of a spiriting crushing 3-1 Premier Sports cup exit to Hibs, but the Czechs also travel to Ibrox on the back of a hiding.

Sparta were hammered 4-0 by Slovacko in the Czech First League in a humbling described by manager Pavel Vrba as the worst of his career.

“When I started in Baník, we lost even more significantly in Slavia,” said Vrba [Daily Record].

“But if I put it in the context of our ambitions, it is probably the most overwhelming. Definitely for me personally.”

The result leaves Sparta 4th in the Czech First League and comes amid a spate of first-team injuries which also give cause for optimism at Ibrox.

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Rangers and Sparta Prague both in relative disarray heading into crunch Europa League clash

Centre-back Ondrej Celustka picked up a knee injury against Lyon and has been ruled out for around a month, while Ladislav Krejci is sidelined by a calf injury.

Star attacker Adam Hlozek is rated as ‘touch and go’ for the game, while winger Jakub Pesek picked up an injury on international duty with the Czech Republic.

Rangers, however, must recover from that painful Hampden defeat to Hibs as the hunt for domestic cup silverware continues.

Rangers haven’t won a Cup trophy since 2011 and that baron spell will stretch into next year after the crushing cup exit.

rangers hampden hibs premier sports cup

GLASGOW, SCOTLAND – NOVEMBER 21: Connor Goldson of Rangers reacts after a missed opportunity during the Premier Sports Cup semi-final match between Hibernian and Rangers at Hampden Park on November 21, 2021 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

But Rangers have been boosted by the Sparta Prague league hammering this weekend and go into the match knowing a 2-0 win will get the club into the knockout stages of the tournament.

The game at Ibrox is also set to be Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s first match in charge of the club and a victory would be the perfect medicine for a tumultuous two weeks at Rangers.

Rangers fans are still licking their wounds following the Hampden defeat to Hibs and the comments of one Ibrox leader has drawn the ire of supporters.

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