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Steven Gerrard urges UEFA to investigate missile claims at Porto in Europa League draw

Steven Gerrard
Steven Gerrard

By Ronnie Esplin

Steven Gerrard has called for UEFA to look into claims that Connor Goldson was struck by missiles during Rangers' 1-1 Europa League draw with Porto on Thursday night.

The Light Blues defender insisted he had been hit with a variety of objects at the Estadio do Dragao and also thought striker Alfredo Morelos was struck as he celebrated his equaliser.

Ahead of the Ladbrokes Premiership meeting with Motherwell at Ibrox on Sunday, Gerrard said: "I went in the dressing room after the game and it wasn't brought to my attention, it was only brought to my attention five minutes ago.

"But it is something that we don't like to see, objects and missiles getting thrown from the stands.

"We've got to think about the safety of the players, we've seen that on numerous occasions, that must stop.

"So I think UEFA need to look into that and try and deal with that.

"But as I say it's only just been brought to my attention so I don't think it's too big of a thing as far as we're concerned."

Rangers are on a high following their impressive performance in Portugal.

However, Gerrard recalls his side lost their place at the top of the Ladbrokes Premiership last week with a 1-1 draw against Hearts at Tynecastle and wants his side to make a brighter start against the Steelmen.

The former Liverpool and England captain said: "I think if you go into the game, certainly at Tynecastle against Hearts, and think you can just casually stroll into a match and you're not at your top level, you can be found out.

"We certainly were in the opening 10 minutes, I think after the opening 10 minutes we were fine.

"We didn't create enough in the game but we certainly showed the right mentality and attitude but it took us 10 minutes to get going.

"We can't afford that. We want out of this season what we're all looking for. We have to be better from the first whistle."

Meanwhile, one of the stars of Rangers' performance in Portugal, Borna Barisic, insists he is playing the best football of his career after getting up to speed at the club.

The Croatia international was subject to criticism from some Light Blues fans last season following his move on a four-year deal from Osijek for a reported £2.2 million.

However, Barisic has been a different prospect this season and amid another assured display against Porto he set up the equaliser for Morelos with a terrific cross from the left flank.

Barisic said: "I'm sure that this is the best football that I have played.

"Last year it was up and down, up and down, but a lot of time it was because of injury.

"And now when I have had a pre-season, everything's fine. I feel very good and sharp.

"Yes, I probably proved them (fans) wrong but that's not the way I want to do things.

"I knew all the time that I can play very good football here, but the problem was I was not on the same level as the other players.

"And now when I get in shape, and I'm sharp and I'm physically good, I show them all how good I am.

"This is not still the best of me, I can show more. So, we're going to see what the future will bring us."

PA

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