Rangers fans start the party in Seville ahead of Europa League final - in pictures

Spanish city braces for 150,000 supporters as Glasgow giants face Eintracht Frankfurt

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Rangers fans were determined to get the party started early in Seville as they prepared for the Europa League final against Eintracht Frankfurt on Wednesday night.

More than 5,000 police officers and security personnel were on high alert as the Spanish city prepared for up to 150,000 supporters of the Scottish and German clubs.

Streets were being closed, barriers erected around monuments and security heightened in subway stations and at the city’s main squares to try to maintain order.

But none of that dampened the enthusiasm of the early arrivals determined to make the most of Rangers' rare appearance in a European final.

National police chief Juan Carlos Castro said 50,000 Frankfurt fans and up to 100,000 Rangers fans were expected in the city ahead of the final at Sevilla’s Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan Stadium.

Both clubs are hoping to end decades of European despair by winning the final of the second-tier continental competition. Frankfurt have not won a European trophy in more than 40 years, while Rangers’ last European title came 50 years ago.

The winning club will also secure a coveted automatic spot in the group stage of the Champions League next season.

“You see fans travelling in numbers and all sorts of routes to support us. For us we take a lot of pride in the support and backing we get,” Rangers midfielder Ryan Jack said on Tuesday. “We’re the lucky ones as we get to play and there are 100,000 who would like to. We want to put on a performance and make them proud.”

Many supporters were making the trip despite not having tickets for the final at the 43,000-capacity ground with only about 10,000 tickets allocated to each club.

The city prepared two fans zones — with a capacity of more than 20,000 each — to accommodate supporters who won’t be able to watch the match inside the stadium.

“I think it's not about the numbers,” Rangers coach Giovanni van Bronckhorst said. “I know we have a lot of people travelling with us. We have to enjoy it, and make sure we are not causing any problems. Half of the people will go back home really happy and half of the people will go back home angry, but we should always respect the whole city.”

Rangers fans partying can be seen in the picture gallery above. To see the next image, just swipe.

Updated: May 17, 2022, 9:09 PM