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IT'S more than 11 years since he was the Hammer in Holland.

 

But the Rangers badge has been nailed on for life.

 

Tonight Jorg Albertz will again pull on the Light Blue top.

 

Only this time he'll be wearing it in front of his TV at home in Moenchengladbach to cheer on Walter Smith's side.

 

And he'll sit there praying someone can repeat his heroics of 1999 and bullet home a Gers winner in the Philips Stadion.

 

The Ibrox side's star-studded attacking names of the past might be replaced by a team ethic based on defence.

 

But Albertz is convinced they can still shock Fred Rutten's side and go all the way to the Europa League Final.

 

Smith himself yesterday called for someone else to step into the Hammer's shoes tonight.

 

Told of the comment, Albertz said: "I think I'm too old for it now!

 

"I'd LOVE to be out on the pitch playing for the team but he's got a good squad and they'll work hard for each other.

 

"Why can't the boys go there and get a draw or a win?

 

"Walter's playing a little bit more defensively now and will hope they can sneak a goal there.

 

"In the situation they're in that's not the worst thing to do.

 

"I don't think they're in a position with the players they have to go out and attack and concede maybe two or three goals.

 

"Hopefully they go out and get a goal and get a draw or a win.

 

"Walter has proved so often in the past that he gets success. In Lisbon they scored two goals so why can't they do it again?

 

"You don't have a Brain Laudrup or Paul Gascoigne who can decide a game on their own with a flash of genius.

 

"You've got a good team that needs to work really hard together as a unit.

 

"Do that and they can beat any team. You see it so often, an underdog beating the favourites.

 

"It's why I think Rangers can go all the way to the final. Why not?

 

"Do that and it would be one of the biggest successes for Walter himself.

 

"This is not disrespectful to the team but he just doesn't have the big name star players any more.

 

"Hopefully they can go all the way. Why not this year?

 

"I'll watch the game here in the house. I'll just wear my blue shirt sitting in front of the TV - and hopefully I'm cheering."

 

That was the case back in 1999 when Dick Advocaat's side travelled to Holland for a Champions League clash.

 

Albertz's excited family had driven two hours from their home across the border in Germany to see him in action.

 

But he was left simmering on the bench after being axed from the starting line-up.

 

Disappointment soon turned to joy though when he replaced the crocked Claudio Reyna after 24 minutes.

 

Then he proved a point to his gaffer by crashing home the dramatic 84th-minute goal to cue that famous crest-kissing and hands-on head celebration.

 

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Albertz said: "Of course I was disappointed not being in the team. My family were in Eindhoven that night to watch the game but I knew the team before the game so they came knowing I wasn't in it.

 

"They made their decision to go not just because I was playing but because they'd been Rangers supporters since I'd joined the club.

 

"They wanted to be there for the team - but of course it's nicer when your son is playing as well.

 

"I remember sitting on the bench in Eindhoven, desperate to get on to prove I should have been out there.

 

"But the gaffer can only pick 11 to start the game.

 

"I don't think he was doing things on purpose, although in my case it might have been a little bit different. I don't know.

 

"I still had to stay focused so if the moment came when I was needed I was ready to perform.

 

"When Reyna got injured it was my chance and I got into the game, scored the winner and of course it was a nice memory.

 

"It was a very important goal because we won the game.

 

"But it wasn't enough because that was the year we played the last game in Munich. We lost 1-0 and didn't get through.

 

"So the goal in the end didn't help too much as things worked out.

 

"But it was still a very nice memory for me and winning away from home showed we weren't too bad in Europe "That's in the past and now we're all looking forward to Rangers hopefully getting a good result."

 

Albertz is still a frequent visitor to Glasgow and was back on the weekend for a dinner along with former Gers team-mate Lorenzo Amoruso.

 

He didn't get to see the game against St Mirren on Sunday.

 

But he did manage a quick word with Gers' manager-in- waiting Ally McCoist when he jetted in to see the first leg round-of-32 clash with Sporting Lisbon last month.

 

He reckons the appointment of McCoist for the start of next season was the easy one financially - but will prove the right one in the end. Albertz, in the middle of some gardening back home in Germany yesterday, is also willing to dig deep to help his pal in any way he can.

 

He added: "Not being disrespectful to Ally, he's a big name but not as a manager at the moment.

 

"He still has to prove himself as far as that goes.

 

"But it's very hard to get somebody in.

 

"Everyone would love to work for Glasgow Rangers but they know the financial situation isn't the best and they can't buy any players they want. But I also think it's the best decision because Ally knows the club inside out.

 

"He knows the players he's got around him so why not give him a try?

 

"He's got a great teacher in Walter and I'm sure Coisty will have success with the club.

 

"I spoke to him after the home Lisbon game. He's still a great character - the same as ever.

 

"He's put a little bit of weight on, I know that, but he's a great guy and I love him.

"If he needs anyone to watch a player, an assistant, phone me, I'll be there. I'll drop everything and be in Glasgow."

 

Read more: http://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/scotsol/homepage/sport/spl/3457055/Cmon-Gers-pummel-PSV-and-feel-like-THIS.html#ixzz1G9XJco8D

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Albertz is the sort of ex player who should be part of the backroom staff in any capacity.

 

He is up there with 1 of WS best signings.

 

It's been said on here many times,why do we not use our ex-players to at least do a bit of scouting??,especially the foreign ones.

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would be great to have hom on the coaching staff.

 

would install professionalism and would be able to help players with their technique. We're massively lacking in this area. Albertz touch, control, composure and awareness were superb and he would surely be able to pass this on and develop players. A great football brain that we could do with.

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I'm glad I was around to see the likes of Albertz playing for us, it'll be a while until we see such quality again i think, legend for me he is...............:notworthy::notworthy::notworthy:

 

I loved the big man too but he'd be even better if he didn't shit out of tackles.

 

I can let him off though.

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:notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::D Jobs for the boys!! Here here!!
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