PSV Eindhoven must beware the threat of James Tavernier in Tuesday’s Champions League play-off clash with Rangers at Ibrox, according to a former Eredivisie defender.
In truth, the Dutch giants probably don’t need reminder about the devastating deliveries of one of Europe’s most creative full-backs.
It was Rangers‘ ol’ reliable James Tavernier who cancelled out PSV’s first half opener during last season’s Champions League play-off tie between the two clubs; flying down the right-hand side before fizzing a trademark, inch-perfect cross into the feet of a grateful Antonio Colak.
That was one of ten assists Tavernier produced in 2022/23, while scoring a further 18 himself.
Rangers face PSV Eindhoven again
And as Rangers go head-to-head with PSV again – a Champions League group-stage spot on the line for a second season running – Kaj Ramsteijn believes his old adversaries cannot afford to give Tavernier the space and time to create opportunities like the one Colak put away stylishly 12 months ago.
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“I think Tavernier is one of their best players,” Ramsteijn, who spent three years at PSV’s rivals Feyenoord between 2011 and 2014, tells Voetbal Primeur.
“He really has a great kick and cross. (Rangers’) game is actually based on that.”
A Champions League place on the line
Tavernier scored in both legs as Mick Beale’s side edged past Servette in the third qualifying round; a clever back-post header securing a 3-2 aggregate win in Switzerland.
The Rangers skipper, meanwhile, is determined to ensure that Rangers make the most of their vociferous home support as they look to stunt PSV’s revenge mission.
“Obviously, with what happened last year when we knocked them out, then you can say they will be looking for revenge,” Taverier tells the Daily Record.
“We’ll do everything in our power to get into the group stage. It’s obviously a massive tie next Tuesday at Ibrox and we’ll be doing all we can to put ourselves in a really good position for the away leg.”