The Nigerian was given the marching orders as the Gers crashed out of the Europa League following Thursday’s loss to the Red and Whites
Leon Balogun was shown the red card as Rangers crumbled 2-0 at home to Slavia Prague in Thursday’s Europa League encounter.
Following a second caution at the Ibrox Stadium, the Nigeria international got the marching orders from referee Orel Grinfeld.
73′ RED: Leon Balogun is sent off after picking up a second booking | 0-1 (Agg 1-2)
— Rangers Football Club (@RangersFC) March 18, 2021
Balogun had earlier been cautioned in the 18th minute, however, he got the second of the encounter following a horror tackle on Lukas Masopust.
His teammate Kemar Roofe – who was a 55th minute replacement for Scott Arfield – was shown the way out 12 minutes earlier following a serious foul play against Ondrej Kolar.
The Jamaican forward stamped his stud on the face of the visitors’ goalkeeper while on a goal-bound move.
This is the first time the Scottish Premiership giants have had two players (Keemar Roofe and Leon Balogun) sent off in a single game in major European competition for the very first time.
2 – Rangers have had two players (Keemar Roofe and Leon Balogun) sent off in a single game in major European competition for the very first time. Disaster. #UEL
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) March 18, 2021
Having played a 1-1 draw in the first leg of the Round of 16 clash at the Sinobo Stadium, Steven Gerrard’s men needed just a win or a 0-0 draw at least to qualify for the quarter-final, nevertheless, they were unable to stop the strong-willed Czech First League outfit.
14 minutes into the encounter Nigeria’s Peter Olayinka handed the Red and Whites a well-deserved lead – heading past goalkeeper Allan McGregor a delightful cross from Jan Boril.
The hosts tried all they could to level matters but having two of their players shown the way out decelerated their fighting spirit.
A minute after Balogun’s dismissal, Nicolae Stanciu scored the important second goal to hand Jindrich Trpisovsky’s side a vital away victory – thus, scaling through on a 3-1 aggregate.
Nigeria’s Joe Aribo was in action from start to finish for Rangers, albeit, his presence could not rescue his side from elimination. Whereas, South African midfielder Bongani Zungu was brought in for Alfredo Morelos with eight minutes to full time.
For Slavia Prague, Olayinka was substituted for Masopust in the 58th minute, while Cote d’Ivoire’s defender Simon Deli and Senegalese forward Abdallah Sima were on parade from start to finish.
Having crashed out of the European club championship, Rangers will shift their attention to the Scottish Premier League where they have been declared as champions of the 2020-21 campaign.