RANGERS are ready to fly the flag for Scotland in Europe according to Gary McAllister, as the Ibrox side gear up to face Legia Warsaw for a place in the Europa League group stages.

Celtic stand alongside the Ibrox side as the nation’s last two representatives in European competition after parachuting into the tournament from the Champions League qualifiers during the week, while Aberdeen and Kilmarnock have now both been eliminated.

McAllister is hoping that Rangers can secure European football until after Christmas by knocking out the Polish side, and should they be the last Scottish side standing, they are happy to shoulder the responsibility of flying he flag for the nation.

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"That [responsibility]'s something that this club is quite happy to have,” said McAllister. “We want to go out and send messages every time we play.

“From our point of view, the performance level has jumped up from I'd go right back to the split last year in possession, in some of the rotations we've got on the pitch, in terms of tactical stuff. We're improving all the time and the players are playing as good football as I've seen these guys play.

"Hopefully, against Legia we can go through and get into Europe proper. We're in four competitions, that's why we have two teams and healthy competition for each position. There's a comfort from sitting at the side and looking at a strong bench.

“From Thursday to Sunday, you're looking at teams that could be. We can freshen up most positions, that's a nice place to be.

With so much riding on the league title this season, some supporters may view Europe as something of a distraction on either side of Glasgow’s divide, but McAllister doesn’t buy into the theory that sacrificing playing on the continent will enhance Rangers’ prospects on the home front, or enhance the season for the fans.

"I thought the games against Rapid Vienna, Villarreal and Spartak [last season] were outstanding games,” he said.

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“I've played at good stadiums under the lights and Ibrox is right up there, so we want to do well in this competition.

“I don't know if we've got the credit we deserve for beating a Midtjylland side I think are good. We dispatched them comfortably and they've not taken that well.

“Speaking to their guys last night, I don't think they expected our levels. Being in Europe just raises the profile of this club again.”