6:43:02 PMWalter Smith has hinted at a more attacking approach
Rangers manager Walter Smith has hinted at a more attacking approach for the first leg of their Uefa Cup quarter-final with Sporting Lisbon. |
Rangers have progressed on the back of some stout defensive displays at Ibrox.
And Smith told the club website: "We have a way of playing that has been successful in knockout tournaments and we won't vary very much from that.
"But we know we may have to change the formation and tactics to try to cause Sporting problems."
Media conference: Rangers manager Walter Smith
Rangers kept clean sheets at home in the previous rounds against Panathinaikos and Werder Bremen.
And a solid 4-5-1 formation has served Smith well for much of the season as Rangers lead the SPL, having already picked up the CIS Insurance Cup.
"I don't think we could find a more difficult tie than the last round against Werder Bremen," Smith added.
"In both legs we had to work extremely hard.
"This time we hope we can cause Sporting more problems than we did do Werder Bremen.
"The knockout games have worked well for us. After going 1-0 down against Panathinaikos for instance we had by far the best of the second half.
"Sometimes I think the defensive aspect is a little bit exaggerated.
"If you look at the second half of the Panathinaikos game we pushed forward a lot and actually played well."
Sporting, who were Uefa Cup runners-up in 2005, have not enjoyed a good domestic season but Smith is aware of their qualities.
"They have individual players who can cause any team problems," the former Scotland boss added.
"They have had a little bit of an indifferent season by their own high standards.
"They lost a number of players in the last close season.
"They had a little problem gelling together to find the consistency they had in the championship the previous season but I still think they have a capability in any given game to be an extremely good side.
"Their focus will be on the Uefa Cup now that the championship is well beyond them, and that makes them extremely dangerous."
Rangers surprised many by getting as far as the Uefa Cup after being drawn in a Champions League group with Barcelona, Lyon and Stuttgart.
However, the normally cagey Smith confessed he is now beginning to believe reaching the final could be a possibility.
"The longer you remain in the tournament, the more you start to think about it," he admitted.
"I don't think we would have considered that at the start of the season, we appreciate how difficult it is and how narrow the margin of error is.
"In the second leg of the last round, Werder Bremen couldn't have competed any better than they did and we found ourselves going through with a bit of luck.
"We know the margins are tight and we just have to try to keep doing what we have been doing and hope it's good enough."
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