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Napoli vs Rangers. UEFA Champions League Group A.

Diego Armando MaradonaAttendance39,835.

Napoli 3

  • G Simeone (11th minute, 16th minute)
  • L Ostigard (80th minute)

Rangers 0

    Napoli 3-0 Rangers: Serie A leaders maintain Group A top spot with emphatic Champions League victory over woeful Gers

    Match report as Rangers' Champions League campaign continued on its dismal journey with a bruising defeat by Napoli in Naples; it was the Gers fifth consecutive Group A loss; Giovanni Simeone scored twice within 16 first-half minutes; Leo Ostigard added a late third

    Rangers' Ryan Kent looks dejected during the Napoli game
    Image: Rangers' Ryan Kent looks dejected during the Napoli game

    Napoli heaped yet more misery on Rangers' luckless European campaign on Wednesday night, as Giovanni Simeone's double and a late Leo Ostigard header secured a convincing 3-0 victory in the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona.

    Napoli boss Luciano Spalletti was adamant there was no chance of his side underestimating Rangers pre-match, in spite of a 7-1 defeat by Liverpool in their last group outing, but their ruthless performance told a different story.

    "You can't imagine the opponents we are facing," opposite number Giovanni van Bronckhorst concluded as his side were taken to task by the Italian outfit. "The level is immense."

    Napoli, top of Serie A and leaders of Group A, demonstrated exactly why they are dominating on both domestic and European fronts with a display that blew the winless Scots away within 16 first-half minutes.

    Napoli's Giovanni Simeone celebrates making it 1-0 vs Rangers
    Image: Napoli's Giovanni Simeone celebrates making it 1-0 vs Rangers

    Simeone's quick-fire double had Napoli cruising, before Ostigard powered a header beyond a helpless Allan McGregor from a pinpoint Giacomo Raspadori corner late on.

    With a perfect set of results, ahead of a showdown with Liverpool next week, Napoli have become the first Italian side to win their opening five games of a Champions League campaign since Juventus achieved the same feat in 2004-05. They've also set a new club record of 12 consecutive wins in all competitions.

    The Gers, contrastingly, have lost all five of their Group A games, conceding 19 in the process. They still have a slim chance of claiming a Europa League spot, at the expense of Ajax, but would need to better the 4-0 scoreline from their reverse fixture with the Dutch when the two sides meet in Glasgow on November 1.

    Also See:

    How Napoli outclassed Rangers

    Napoli's Giovanni Simeone celebrates as he makes it 2-0 vs Rangers
    Image: Napoli's Giovanni Simeone celebrates as he makes it 2-0 vs Rangers

    Last season's Europa League finalists will be out of Europe altogether barring an improbable thrashing of Ajax in their concluding game at Ibrox in six days' time.

    Napoli, unbeaten in 16 games this season, were devastatingly fast out of the blocks, scoring twice in the opening 16 minutes.

    There was just 11 minutes on the clock when Giovanni Di Lorenzo sent the impressive Simeone scurrying down the right flank to score a clinical opener, arrowing a precise shot past McGregor and in at the far post.

    Simeone then headed home a teasing cross from Mario Rui four minutes later, with defenders Leon King and Ben Davies powerless either side.

    Gers collect unwanted record

    Rangers have conceded 19 goals in this season’s Champions League, the most ever by a Scottish side in the group stages in a single season.

    The visitors rallied in the second period, restoring some beleaguered pride, and nearly reduced arrears when Ridvan Yilmaz presented Alfredo Morelos with a back post tap in, only for the Columbian to completely miscue his attempted finish.

    Defender Ostigard added the gloss to an effortless home win in the 80th minute, rising to power Raspadori's corner beyond McGregor to round off an impressive Champions League debut.

    Van Bronckhorst: CL level is 'immense'

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    Speaking after the 3-0 defeat to Napoli in the Champions League, Rangers manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst suggests fans need to appreciate the high standard of opponents they have been up against in the competition.

    Rangers manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst:

    "We should see the performance today in terms of the Champions League. For me, it was a positive one. If you compare it to all of the games we've played.

    "We have some good moments in the game. Too many games we've conceded too many goals easily. The biggest example is against Liverpool at home.

    "You can't imagine the opponents we are facing in this moment in this group. We are thinking about our performances of course, but we have to be realistic.

    "That's always the case when you play in the Champions League. The level we are facing at the moment in this group is immense. If you look at the results elsewhere, big teams, Barcelona and Juventus, don't even qualify.

    "So, that's all I can say. It's the level we face. You have to be ready for 90 minutes."

    Tavernier: 'Easy' goals cost us

    Rangers captain James Tavernier told BT Sport:

    "We are disappointed to lose the game. I felt we can take some positives from that compared to the other games we have played in the group.

    "We let two easy goals in in the first half and I felt we had two good, big chances that could have levelled the game.

    "We have to take the positives from the game and build on that. They took their chances but that is the level we are playing at and we have to learn from that."

    What's next?

    Rangers are back in Scottish Premiership action on Saturday when they travel to Aberdeen; kick-off 3pm. Their final Champions League group stage fixture on Tuesday November 1 will see them welcome Ajax to Ibrox.

    Napoli host Sassuolo in Serie A on Saturday before a trip to Liverpool on Tuesday in their final Champions League group-stage fixture.

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