The British Ambassador to Portugal, Chris Sainty, has heaped praise on Rangers on Twitter following their 2-2 draw with Benfica in the Europa League on Thursday night.

The Gers led 2-0 with 15 minutes remaining courtesy of goals in either half from Scott Arfield and Kemar Roofe, but the Portuguese giants rallied and secured a point through a James Tavernier own goal and a fine strike from substitute, Pizzi.

Rangers v Benfica - UEFA Europa League

Kemar Roofe scored a fine second goal for Rangers but it wasn’t enough for all three points. (Photo by Alan Harvey/SNS Group via Getty Images)

It was a disappointing end to the match for Steven Gerrard’s side, especially as Standard Liege’s win over Lech Poznan in the group’s other game meant that three points would have been enough to secure a place in the Round of 32 with two games to spare.

However, Rangers are still very well placed in the group and there are plenty of positives to take away.

Following the game, Sainty – who has previously tweeted about the club following ties against Portuguese opponents – congratulated Rangers on the level of their performance in both Thursday night’s match and in their 3-3 draw against the same opposition in Lisbon three weeks ago.

British Ambassador and Portuguese Secretaries of State meet with members of the British community to address questions and concerns about the UK’s exit from the European Union

The British Ambassador to Portugal praised Rangers following their draw with Benfica. (Photo by Horacio Villalobos – Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images)

“Congratulations Rangers,” he wrote on Twitter. “Tremendous game.”

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“You matched Benfica, one of Europe’s great football clubs, over two legs. In fact, you were unlucky not to win both.”


After last night’s results, Rangers know that three points in next week’s home fixture against Standard Liege will be enough to guarantee progression to the knockout stages.

Yet, they will once again have a safety net if things don’t go to plan, with an away match against Lech Poznan also still to come.

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