Sat, Oct 14, 2006 - Page 18 News List

Never mind the UEFA Cup, says Rangers striker

AFP , GLASGOWAFP, LONDON

Croatian striker Dado Prso believes Rangers can win the UEFA Cup this season, but he says he would rather get his hands on the Scottish Premier League trophy.

The Ibrox club are away to Italian Serie A side Livorno next week in their opening group game in the UEFA Cup, but before that they have a crucial league game at home to Inverness Caledonian Thistle today.

And while Prso would love to make it all the way to the final of the European competition -- especially with the final being held at Hampden, Scotland's national stadium -- he says winning the SPL is the priority.

"The UEFA Cup is a great competition and the fact the final is in Glasgow makes it even more special," he said.

"We can definitely think about winning it and we will aim to be strong and difficult to beat in the tournament. It would be a brilliant way to finish the season by getting to the UEFA Cup Final at Hampden and I don't see why we can't," Prso said.

"But in the end all that matters to me this year is I want Rangers to be SPL champions again. We may be seven points behind Celtic but that's not a big worry. In the past we have been further behind and still came back to be champions in the end so we can do it again," he said.

Rangers manager Paul Le Guen will have a big decision to make for Saturday's game after French goalkeeper Lionel Letizi recovered from a calf muscle injury which has kept him out for two months.

In his place young keeper Allan McGregor has performed admirably and won the SPL Player of the Month award last month.

However, French boss Le Guen has previously insisted that Letizi is his number one -- no matter how well McGregor plays -- and if he picks his fellow countryman it is likely the young Scottish keeper will seek a transfer in January.

SPL leaders Celtic, meanwhile, are away to Dundee United who are only one point above bottom of the table Motherwell.

Gordon Strachan's side will therefore be expected to stretch their three-point advantage over second place Hearts, who play Hibernian the following day.

There are two injury worries for Celtic with Craig Beattie almost certainly out after straining his hamstring and Aiden McGeady struggling with an ankle injury he picked up on international duty with Republic of Ireland.

The SPL game of the weekend will take place in the Scottish capital with the Edinburgh derby at Easter Road.

In the remaining SPL games today, Motherwell will look for only their third win of the season to leapfrog their opponents Dunfermline at Fir Park.

St Mirren could go third in the table if they win away to Falkirk and Rangers slip up against Caley while Kilmarnock and Aberdeen, who are level on 12 points in the table, will try to gain the upper hand at Rugby Park.

Manchester United defender Patrice Evra can't wait to get onto the pitch at Wigan today so he can avoid any more taunts from Sir Alex Ferguson.

French full-back Evra has suffered a hard time from United's Scottish boss this week after France were beaten by Scotland in a Euro 2008 qualifier last weekend.

The shock result was greeted with glee by Ferguson and he has been only too happy to remind Evra of the result by whistling the French national anthem whenever they have met this week.

As if that wasn't bad enough for Evra, who has been capped five times by France but was not involved in his country's loss at Hampden Park, he is guaranteed further teasing when United's midfielder Darren Fletcher catches up with him.

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