(Reuters) – Rangers manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst said Aaron Ramsey had shown courage in putting his hand up to take a penalty in the Europa League final against Eintracht Frankfurt on Wednesday after the midfielder was the only player to miss from the spot.
Ramsey, on loan from Juventus, was brought on in the 117th minute with the game level at 1-1 but had his spot kick saved by Kevin Trapp as Eintracht won 5-4 on penalties to end their 42-year wait for a European title.
“He is very down,” Van Bronckhorst told reporters. “It’s never nice to lose. Everyone is hurt and disappointed. You can sense that in the locker room. That’s normal so shortly after the game.
“Aaron was disappointed but he took responsibility to take the penalty and you can make it or miss it. Unfortunately he didn’t make it but you want to have players who are comfortable taking penalties.”
Rangers were bidding for their first European trophy in 50 year and could have clinched the game in the 118th minute when substitute Kemar Roofe flashed a ball across the box to Ryan Kent but the winger’s low shot was superbly kept out by Trapp.
“Of course we had a big chance in the end,” said former Dutch international Van Bronckhorst. “I think it was a great save. In those minutes towards the end of the game it is decisive.
“Ryan did everything he could to score the goal. When you get these big chances you have to take them, especially in the final minutes, but Ryan did everything he could.”
Rangers, who finished second behind Celtic in the league, take on Hearts in the Scottish Cup final on Saturday.
(Reporting by Dhruv Munjal in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford)