Rangers & Celtic Europa League permutations: What do Scottish teams need to qualify for knockouts?

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The two Glasgow giants are on a tightrope in Europe, with little room for error as they go into their final matches - here's what they need to do

Both Rangers and Celtic head into the final group games of the Europa League with their future uncertain.

The two Scottish giants have enjoyed strong campaigns to date, with the Ibrox club having suffered only a single defeat from their five matches, while the Hoops have responded impressively when they have had their backs against the wall.

Both teams have their destiny in their own hands ahead of final fixtures that will see the Gers travel to Austria to face Rapid Vienna and Celtic play host to Red Bull Salzburg at Parkhead.

So what results exactly do these sides need in order to progress to the last 32? Goal takes a look.


What are the current standings of Rangers and Celtic in the Europa League?


Ryan Jack Rangers 2018

Europa League Group G is the tightest of all the pools, with just two points separating Villarreal in first with Spartak Moscow in fourth. As such, all four teams can qualify and all four have their destiny in their own hands.

Rangers sit third, a point behind Rapid Vienna and the Spanish giants, with the Russians in fourth.

Team P W D L GD Pts
Villarreal 5 1 4 0 +5 7
Rapid Vienna 5 2 1 2 -4 7
Rangers 5 1 3 1 +1 6
Spartak Moscow 5 1 2 2 -2 5

Group B is straightforward, with Red Bull Salzburg the undoubted class act. Last season’s semi-finalists have won all of their five matches and have not only secured their place in the competition in the spring, but top spot in the pool, too.

There has not been a single draw in this group, with Celtic coming next on nine points and RB Leipzig three worse off. Propping up the standings are pointless Rosenborg, who are, of course, eliminated ahead of the final round of matches.

Team P W D L GD Pts
RB Salzburg 5 5 0 0 +10 15
Celtic 5 3 0 2 -1 9
RB Leipzig 5 2 0 3 +1 6
Rosenborg 5 0 0 5 -10 0

Remaining Europa League Group G fixtures


Date Match Time (UK)
December 13 Rapid Vienna vs Rangers 5:55pm
December 13 Villareal vs Spartak Moscow 5:55pm

Remaining Europa League Group B fixtures


Date Match Time (UK)
December 13 Celtic vs RB Salzburg 8pm
December 13 RB Leipzig vs Rosenborg 8pm

What results do Rangers need to qualify from their Europa League group?


Rangers will be assured of at least second place if they beat Rapid Vienna on Thursday. 

They would even win the group if they took three points in Austria and Villarreal failed to beat CSKA Moscow in Spain.

Failure to win at the Allianz Stadion will certainly see Steven Gerrard’s men eliminated.


What results do Celtic need to qualify from their Europa League group?


Kieran Tierney Celtic 2018-19

A win or a draw will ensure Celtic reach the last 32 of the Europa League.

If they were to lose, they would be reliant upon RB Leipzig failing to beat Rosenborg in Germany


What are the other permutations in the Europa League?


In Group A, Bayer Leverkusen and FC Zurich have already qualified. Leverkusen will top the group if they win against AEK Larnaca but failure to do so will see the door opened for the Swiss if they can overcome Ludogorets.

In Group C, Zenit St Petersburg have already qualified. Slavia Prague will finish second if they can take at least a point at home against the Russians. If they do not, the winner of the match between Bordeaux and Copenhagen will progress. Should that game end drawn, the Czechs will go through.

In Group D, Dinamo Zagreb will finish first and Fenerbahce second.

In Group E, Arsenal are assured of first and Sporting CP second.

In Group F, Real Betis will take first spot if they beat eliminated Dudelange. AC Milan can top the group if the Spaniards fail to win in Luxembourg and will qualify with a point against Olympiacos. Even if they lose in Greece, only a 2-0 or 3-1 loss, or any defeat by a three-goal margin or greater, will see them go out.

In Group H, Eintracht Frankfurt will finish first and Lazio second.

In Group I, all four teams can qualify. Genk will be assured of a place in the last 32 with a point against Sarpsborg but must win to ensure top spot. Besiktas or Malmo will qualify with a win in Istanbul, while a draw in that game and a Sarpsborg victory in Genk would see the Belgians go out and the Turks take top spot.

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In Group J, Krasnodar will qualify if they take a point against Sevilla, who would win the group with a 1-0, 2-1 or two-goal margin victory. Should Sevilla and Standard Liege win, there will be a three-way tie at the top of the pool. Unless the Spaniards won by four goals, the Russians would still progress, albeit in second.

In Group K, Dynamo Kiev are through and will finish first if Astana fail to win in Rennes. The Kazakh side, meanwhile, will go out if they lose to the French club, who would take second spot in that scenario.

In Group L, Chelsea have secured top spot. BATE will take second if they beat PAOK, but lose by two goals and they will be leapfrogged by the Greek side. Indeed, PAOK will qualify in second if they win by three goals and Vidi lose to Chelsea. A two-goal win would still probably be enough, unless Vidi went down in a very high scoring loss, such as 5-3 or 6-4. If PAOK win, however, and Vidi take anything from Stamford Bridge, they will progress.

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