Walter Smith was left to rue a series of missed chances that denied his side victory after Rangers were held to a 1-1 draw by Valencia in their Group C UEFA Champions League clash at Ibrox.
The Glasgow giants took the lead through a first-half Maurice Edu header but the American international then nodded past his own keeper just seconds after the break to level the score. The draw continues the Glasgow side's unbeaten start to the competition and leaves them in second place, behind Manchester United, on five points.
However things could have been different for Smith's side if Kenny Miller, Steven Naismith and Richard Foster had not wasted golden opportunities to give Rangers a vital victory. "In fairness to Valencia they too had a few opportunities to score but over the piece ours were maybe the more clear-cut ones," said Smith.
"We have got to be pleased we managed to do that against a team that challenge you to go forward. We did that well for the last hour tonight and I feel a little bit disappointed we didn't take the three points with the chances we created but that happens in football.
"From most of our boys we have had good finishing this season in our domestic games when opportunities have come along and it was an unfortunate evening for us in that sense. The good thing from our own point of view is in last season's campaign we were never anywhere near the level that we've reached this season. I don't think in a Champions League game we've ever created that many opportunities."
It is a remarkable turnaround in fortunes for Rangers who only collected two points in the competition last season as they lost all three home games. But the manager was not getting too carried away with his team's start to Group C.
"In the Champions League there is not a great margin of error. If you look at the last minute we had an opportunity and they had one," Smith added. "For us we face two away games and one at home. We're obviously in better spirits this season. The challenge that we've got is to try and get more points on the board and to see if we can get European football after Christmas. It will be a difficult task for us in the remaining three matches."
Rangers are in Spain for the rematch in two weeks time but Smith refused to say the match would decide the outcome of second place in the group. "In the position both clubs are in it is going to be a big match but I prefer to look at the three matches that we have," he added. "Our experience in the Champions League would lead us to believe that we just need to look at our own form and just try and maintain that.
"When you look at the games that we've got they will be tough and tight but if we can play as we have done in the opening three games then we have an opportunity - but no more than that - to try and qualify. I think we have shown this season we are more comfortable playing in the Champions League than we looked in previous seasons so that's a big step forward for us. Whether it will be a big enough step forward we'll know after our last three games."