STEVEN Gerrard last night challenged his Rangers players to maintain the high standards they set in their thrilling 1-0 victory over Feyenoord at Ibrox in their remaining Europa League matches.

Gerrard, whose team beat their Dutch rivals thanks to a first-half Sheyi Ojo strike, felt the Glasgow club had given their fans a performance to be proud of after a difficult 24 hours in their opening Group G fixture.

The Liverpool and England great, whose team are level on points and goal difference with Porto following the first match, now wants them to keep performing at the same level as they push for a place in the knockout rounds.

“I think we gave the supporters a performance to be proud of,” he said. “It’s been an emotional 24 hours for everyone connected with the club (following the sad passing of Fernando Ricksen). There was a lot of emotion in the crowd.

“That put more pressure on the players. But and we matched that with our performance. I thought they were outstanding, especially in the first-half. I was slightly disappointed not to go into the break further ahead. Feyenoord were better in the second-half. Over the course of the 90 minutes I think we deserved it.

“It gives us a good start, a confidence and a belief. But when we go to Rotterdam it will be a bigger challenge. We need to keep trying to perform at that level, keep winning at home. We're the underdogs, it's a Champions League (level) group. We have to get as many points as we can at home and look to play well when we go away.”

Gerrard singled out Rangers goalkeeper Allan McGregor and striker Alfredo Morelos for special praise – and refused to criticise his right back and captain James Tavernier for the penalty that he missed.

Asked about Morelos, he said: “Wow! In the first 45 minutes it was up there with the best he has played for me. I thought he was unplayable. All that was missing was a goal. But I am proud with what everyone gave tonight.

“Alan McGregor made a few saves. I'd expect him to make those saves and we're going to need him. He's going to have to be big for us. We are going to need Alan McGregor in every game we play at this level."

On Tavernier, Gerrard said: “These things happen. James has scored big penalties for these teams before. He has played his part tonight in a fantastic clean sheet against a good team. That is how I will judge him. I won’t judge him on a missed penalty. We missed another dozen half chances.”

Feyenoord manager Jaap Stam said: “It was an intense game,” he said. “Rangers used their physique and pace up front. We couldn’t control the game and we were too weak in terms of keeping the ball and using our bodies in the battles.

“At moments we had the ball we didn’t do enough with it. Everybody knows that in this line of football you don’t get a lot of opportunities and you need to make the most of them when they come. Rangers gave us a lot of space to play football and we didn’t use it. They actually made it easy for us but we never made the right choices.”