Mutu: Rangers tie leaves 'everything to play for'

April 25, 2008

Fiorentina striker Adrian Mutu insists the Italian side must beat Rangers to the punch in Florence next week to book their place in next month's final.

The Viola held Rangers to a goalless draw at Ibrox in last night's UEFA Cup semi-final first leg.

With Rangers having already shown an ability to strike a killer blow away from home in this tournament, Mutu knows his team face an arduous task in Florence next Thursday.

'It's a good result to take home in view of the return leg,' admitted Mutu. 'But the tie is 50-50, everything is to play for.

'Rangers are a good side and we will have to be extremely careful because we know how strong they have been on the road in this competition, they already showed it in the quarter-final stages and in the last 32.'

Having been held to a goalless draw at Ibrox against Sporting Lisbon, the Scottish giants won 2-0 on Portuguese soil to reach the last four of the competition.

Mutu believes his team will need to show more flair and step up their game to end Walter Smith's hopes of steering Rangers to the final.

'In Florence, we will need to attack more if we want to reach the final in Manchester,' said Mutu.

'I expect to give more contribution in attack in the return leg as in this game I had to play more of a midfield role.

'It has been a difficult game at Ibrox, the pitch wasn't in good condition and I have struggled. But I don't think it was a problem to do with the atmosphere.

'We are a mature side and we've already proved we can handle this kind of atmosphere.

'The fact is we didn't have much space but despite this we created more than them.'