Rangers let a lead slip 3 times in Russia as two objectives within the house of a minute consigned Steven Gerrard’s aspect to a 4-Three defeat by Spartak Moscow.
An early personal purpose and strikes from Daniel Candeias and Glenn Middleton every put Rangers forward and Alfredo Morelos had a purpose controversially dominated out for offside with the guests 3-2 in entrance close to the top of a breathless first half.
However Luiz Adriano headed one other equaliser within the 58th minute and Connor Goldson – who scored a first-half personal purpose – inadvertently diverted Sofiane Hanni’s strike into the online seconds later.
Nikola Katic hit a put up for Rangers in time added on to a rare recreation.
The end result blew open Group G as Rangers, pre-match leaders, slipped to 3rd, one level behind Villarreal and one forward of Fast Vienna.
Middleton was handed his second begin for Rangers after a hamstring damage dominated out Ryan Kent whereas Katic was additionally amongst 5 gamers introduced in following Saturday’s victory over St Mirren.
Spartak caretaker boss Raul Riancho had accused followers of making an attempt to destroy their membership after they reacted angrily following a fourth consecutive house defeat within the league and his title was roundly booed earlier than the sport.
However the house supporters obtained behind their workforce from the beginning and Roman Zobnin got here near rewarding them with a long-range strike.
The purpose spree started inside 5 minutes as Roman Eremenko headed Middleton’s nook into his personal internet underneath stress from Lassana Coulibaly.
The hosts responded properly and Allan McGregor made two stops from Salvatore Bocchetti earlier than being overwhelmed within the 22nd minute by Lorenzo Melgarejo’s back-post header after Ivelin Popov turned Jon Flanagan a method and the opposite earlier than delivering a superb cross.
Popov beat Flanagan within the air however headed over however the Rangers left-back quickly loved a greater second as Rangers regained the lead within the 27th minute.
Flanagan’s via ball discovered Candeias unmarked because the winger beat the offside entice earlier than producing an excellent 18-yard end.
Middleton quickly noticed a low cross turned simply broad by a Spartak defender however there was an personal purpose on the different finish within the 35th minute as Goldson sliced a clearance previous McGregor after Nikolai Rasskazov had run on to a go inside Flanagan and delivered a low cross.
Rangers have been again in entrance six minutes later when Middleton drilled house after getting the break of the ball following some direct working from Morelos.
The Colombian swept house a Candeias cross moments later however was denied by a doubtful offside determination.
What a primary half in Russia 😲
⏰ fifth min: Spartak Moskva 0⃣ – 1⃣ Rangers
⏰ 22nd min: Spartak Moskva 1⃣ – 1⃣ Rangers
⏰ 27th min: Spartak Moskva 1⃣ – 2⃣ Rangers
⏰ 35th min: Spartak Moskva 2⃣ – 2⃣ Rangers
— UEFA Europa League (@EuropaLeague) November 8, 2018
The break didn’t halt the momentum. McGregor made a great cease from Hanni inside two minutes of the restart and Rangers threatened on the break earlier than the third equaliser. Once more McGregor saved from Hanni however the ball looped up for Adriano to move house.
Hanni obtained his purpose a minute later when his long-range strike clipped the boot of Goldson and flew into the highest nook.
Bocchetti headed towards the bar as Spartak took management however there was nonetheless extra drama as Katic headed towards a put up from a stoppage-time nook earlier than the hosts scrambled the ball behind.
Gareth McAuley was thrown on for a debut however Spartak survived the second set-piece to clinch victory.