HISTORY awaits for Rangers. The timing would be apt, the achievement the greatest in an illustrious story as the heroes of 55 attempt to become Europa League legends.

In terms of sentiment and significance to a club and a support, the Premiership title win of last season will never be surpassed. It meant so much to so many and was an accomplishment – after ten years of trials and tribulations, of emotional and financial investment - that marked the end of one chapter and the beginning of another at Ibrox.

But a Europa League win, one that could be achieved against all the odds, would be the finest feat of all by a Rangers squad. Indeed, it would be up there with the most remarkable successes of any Scottish side.

Only a Champions League triumph would eclipse Celtic’s crowning as the kings of Europe in 1967. For various football and financial reasons, that can almost certainly be ruled out these days sadly.

But victory in Seville next month would put this Rangers side ahead of the legends of 1972. For decades to come, their names and their deeds will be cherished should the seemingly impossible dream be realised in a matter of weeks.

If it could be done in this year of all years, in the time that Rangers celebrate their 150th anniversary and toast the Barcelona Bears, it would be all the sweeter. Rangers are on the brink of greatness.

Such opportunities rarely arise and the chance that awaits Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s side should not be downplayed. This is their shot, perhaps their only one.

The tribal nature of the Scottish game ensures that support for Rangers will not be universal, but the benefits of their endeavours will be felt far beyond Ibrox. It is the champions who have flown the flag with distinction in recent seasons and it is not just their standing that has been enhanced as a result.

It is the ultimate irony, and the ultimate source of frustration and disappointment, that Celtic will reap the rewards in terms of the Champions League bounty next term. That is the cost of Premiership failure that Rangers must pay.

But the benefits of their efforts are wide-ranging and it can only be hoped that the game here, as a collective, can make the most of what has been achieved as co-efficient points have been earned and Scotland has been put back on the map.

Reaching the semi-finals of the Europa League is a success in itself and this incredible continental campaign will be remembered fondly no matter where and how it ends.

It started with an abject, costly defeat to Malmo in the Champions League. It could yet close with the silverware being lifted in Seville.

When Van Bronckhorst succeeded Steven Gerrard as manager in November, there was a very real possibility that the Europa League run would conclude sooner rather than later. As Rangers toiled domestically, they struggled abroad.

The victory over Sparta Prague that secured knock-out football ultimately didn’t kick-start the campaign in the manner that was required in the Premiership and the reign as champions will end after just one season. That fact is unforgivable.

But Rangers have somehow found it within themselves to raise their game and their levels when that now familiar Europa League theme has been ringing in their ears. For all their struggles on a Saturday or Sunday, they are a different being on a Thursday evening.

The performances to see off Borussia Dortmund were remarkable. The nights home and away against Red Star Belgrade and Braga were juxtaposed but equally significant.

Now RB Leipzig await. The stakes could not be higher, but Rangers have travelled to Germany with hope rather than fear and even a narrow defeat would give them a chance as Ibrox prepares to play its part in keeping the dream alive next Thursday evening.

They have reached the last four the hard way and their place in the semi-finals alongside Leipzig, West Ham United and Frankfurt has been well earned. Rangers deserve to be here.

Scottish clubs are not equipped or expected to be semi-finalists of European competition these days. Even if it was the Conference League, it would still be a hugely impressive deed from Rangers.

Their exploits are the essence of football, a reminder of what the game is all about as they have punched above their weight and given a bloody nose to those who seek to gerrymander competitions to serve and protect their own bank balances and interests.

Rangers are up against the might and money of the Premier League and Bundesliga. David must overcome Goliath twice.

Their efforts for three seasons under Gerrard saw reputations restored and built as Rangers became a force to be reckoned with at this level. A great European name now has an opportunity befitting their status.

As Van Bronckhorst’s side take to the field at the Red Bull Arena and at Ibrox over the next week, the minds of supporters will invariably drift back to those nerve-shredding, tear-jerking nights against Fiorentina in 2008. For the first time since then, Rangers have a European final in their sights and within their grasps.

This group of players are not the most accomplished to have set out on a continental campaign. They have earned their shot at glory, though, and must now make the most of it.

The sides under Gerrard’s guidance would ultimately fall at the group stage in the first season and then be beaten by Bayer Leverkusen and Slavia Prague in the subsequent campaigns. New heights were reached, but the last 16 was the ceiling.

Somehow, Van Bronckhorst has managed to negotiate his way to the semi-finals as the domestic and European fortunes have contrasted. A season that promised much and then little could now end with Ibrox idols being crowned.

The story of the season has yet to be finished. In time, the history books could be rewritten at Ibrox.