Vignal thrilled with winner
By Paul Higham
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Gregory Vignal's match-winning penalty was the most important kick of his career.Rangers hero Gregory Vignal says that his match-winning penalty was the most important kick of his career.
The young Frenchman slotted the final penalty to seal Rangers' shoot-out victory against Portuguese side Maritimo at Ibrox on Thursday.
Dado Prso's strike had made the aggregate score 1-1 and extra time failed to provide a goal leading to nerve-jangling penalties.
On-loan Liverpool defender Vignal stepped up for the deciding penalty to send the Scottish giants into the new group phase of the Uefa Cup.
"I was just a little bit nervous," said Vignal. "The most important thing was for us to be in the next round of the Uefa Cup.
"It was the most important kick of my career. It was the last kick of the game and if we scored we were through.
"I was just trying to stay cool and not think about anything apart from scoring.
"The dressing room was on fire afterwards. We are just so happy because Rangers have to be in Europe."
The win managed to take some of the pressure off Alex McLeish, and he was proud of his side's bravery during the match.
"You have to be strong and be brave and we were," said McLeish.
"We hope it is a catalyst for future success. Certainly the confidence will be very high.
"We did say a couple of weeks ago that confidence plays such a big part in any sport but we have stood up and been strong and we deserve credit for that.
"I'm just so pleased for the players and the Rangers fans, who were absolutely brilliant - as good as I have seen them."