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Strange times for Rangers – on the one hand they are on the verge of becoming the first Scottish side to reach the knockout stages of the Champions League, while domestically, they are suffering the worst run in their history.

Under-fire manager Alex McLeish whose job may depend on the outcome of tonight’s encounter with Inter, believes his European record should be enough to spare him the sack.

“Obviously our league form is very disappointing but we still have this marvellous opportunity,” said McLeish.

“I told the chairman a couple of weeks ago I wasn’t walking away and was determined to be involved in this European experience. I’m absolutely certain that if we had made a change then we would be struggling to stay in Europe.”

McLeish is not helped by an extensive injury list which sees strikers Dado Prso and Nacho Novo, join Brahim Hemdani, Julien Rodriguez, Olivier Bernard and Federico Nieto on the sidelines.

A draw or even a defeat might be enough for Rangers to progress depending on the outcome of the other Group H fixture between Artmedia and Porto.

Inter arrived in Glasgow with an understrength 19-man squad missing among others Luís Figo, Kily González, Dejan Stankovic, Juan Sebastián Verón, and Iván Cordoba. Zé Maria and Julio Cruz also miss out through injury.

Visiting coach Roberto Mancini feels the crowd could be a key factor in deciding the outcome.

“I expect the supporters will play an important role for Rangers,” he said.

“Some of my players are not fit, that’s why they didn’t travel, but we have a competitive team and we will play a competitive game.”

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