The numbers behind Thursday's meeting with FC Ufa
Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

The numbers behind Thursday's meeting with FC Ufa

With a colossal second-leg just around the corner, we take a look at the numbers behind the Ufa clash on Thursday night.

Rangers lead the tie 1-0 after Connor Goldson’s strike was enough to see off the Russian side at Ibrox. It could be a nervy night in Russia, with Sunday’s 3-3 draw with Motherwell at Fir Park still fresh in supporters’ minds.

However, looking at the numbers behind Thursday’s clash, Rangers really don’t have too much they should be concerned about.

The numbers

The aim will be not to lose on Thursday night. The good thing for Steven Gerrard’s men is that out of the four times the club have visited Russia, they’ve only ever lost once. That defeat came on their last visit back in 2004 to CSKA Moscow, with the score being 2-1. Even that would be enough to see the Gers through on Thursday night.

Connor Goldson’s goal gave Rangers a 1-0 win against Ufa at Ibrox (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

It’s of vital importance that Rangers can net in the match also. Given that Ufa will put a lot of pressure on Gerrard’s men throughout, an away goal would be priceless. Fortunately, Rangers have now scored in nine of their last 10 meetings against Russian sides.

The only time the Glasgow side have failed to net is the 2-0 defeat to Zenit St Petersburg in the UEFA Cup final of 2008.

Last week we spoke of how Gerrard was looking to make history by going seven games unbeaten in Europe since Walter Smith back in 2007. However, avoiding defeat against FC Ufa would see Gerrard make it eight unbeaten – something that hasn’t happened since 1998.

Dick Advocaat and Walter Smith were the last managers to go eight unbeaten in Europe (FRANCK FIFE/AFP/Getty Images)

Unbeaten run

Another impressive stats is the fact that Rangers have only lost two of their last eight away matches in Europe. That’s also part of a bigger run of three in 11.

Staying ahead of Ufa is also key on Thursday night. However, Gerrard can take solace from the fact that in his seven European games so far, he has never been behind.

So the early omens are positive for Rangers once more. Progression would see the Liverpool icon lauded even more, and provide a timely booster ahead of the Celtic clash this Sunday.