Steven Gerrard accused his Rangers-defenders of not doing the basic principles in a porous 4-3 defeat against Spartak Moscow on Thursday night.
The Ibrox team led a European league-tie three times in the Russian capital, which entered the interval with a 3-2 lead after Roman Eremenko's own goal and strikes Daniel Candeias and teenage neighbor Glenn Middleton.
Disquiet by the loss of two second half Spartak goals in a disastrous 60 second spell, however, Gerrard completed on his backline as his team slid to third in their Europa League group.
Steven Gerrard accused his Rangers players of not doing the basic principles against Spartak Moscow
I am very disappointed in the result & # 39 ;, Gerrard said.
& # 39; You saw two sides of our performance. We attacked very well and were very dangerous and very brave and got our rewards and took control in the rest.
& # 39; Football is about levels and if you do not perform and defend the base well enough, high-ranking teams will normally punish you and that was the case tonight. I am disappointed with the result. & # 39;
Connor Goldson threw his own net in a first half of five, a bad ending that completed the night of misery of the former Brigton defender for Spartak's winner.
When asked what irritated him about his defense, Gerrard replied: "We did not do the basic principles well enough or repaired our lines at the right time and we were not in the right positions.
"People who have received a lot of praise and who have done very well to bring us to this stage have not done the basics well. & # 39;
Moments after the first European goal of Middleton gave Rangers the lead for a third time after 42 minutes, Alfredo Morelos had excluded a strike for a disputable offside call from the Croatian officials.
Connor Goldson threw his own net in a first half of five and called in the winner
Gerrard was stunned by the loss of two Spartak targets in a 60-second calamity
Alfredo Morelos had excluded a strike for a disputable offside call from the Croatian officials
Convinced that the goal would have been to give Rangers a lead of two goals at half time, Gerrard said: & # 39; It was a big decision now and it's hard as a manager to answer and not to say the wrong thing and get big problems. We lost defensively because of ourselves but on another night we could have achieved a fourth goal.
Normally to get here and achieve three goals, you get a result and although we should have scored four goals, that is a different story. I am bitterly disappointed with how we have defended tonight. & # 39;
Despite having gone to third place, Rangers remain a single point behind the group leaders Villareal. The Spaniards then visit Glasgow and only two points separate the four teams with a place in the last 32 in the balance.
& # 39; It is still wide open, & # 39; said Gerrard. & # 39; It will go to the wire we predicted in the beginning. Villarreal is now becoming bigger and more exciting, but we had no illusions before the game.
& # 39; We knew it was going into the thread, but tonight's result makes the challenge a bit more difficult. & # 39;
A club in crisis after supporter anger about the resignation of the Italian coach Massimo Carrera victory, came as a relief for Spartak, who is now faced with a UEFA penalty after three flares were thrown into the playing field in the opening 10 minutes.
& # 39; No problem, & # 39; said Gerrard about pyrotechnics. & # 39; But I do not think it's good that these things happen in the stadium. & # 39;