STEVEN GERRARD insists he isn't focused on a Champions League berth as Rangers return to the qualifying stages of the competition and look to overcome Malmo.

Rangers face the Allsvenskan title holders aiming to set up a meeting with Olympiacos or Ludogorets in the play-off round and earn themselves a shot at the lucrative group stages.

Should Gerrard's side lose to the Swedes, they will then drop into the final qualifying round for the the Europa League and face either FC Kairat Almaty or Alashkert.

The Malmo clash is the first time that Rangers have competed in the Champions League for a decade and Gerrard knows it is the next step for his side following their impressive European form in recent years.

Gerrard said: “It’s obviously something that’s been a target since day one.

“But we always knew it was going to be a process. A patient one.

“I think the first challenge was always to bring European football back, from a Europa League point of view.

“The challenge here was always to finish top of the league at some point. We managed to do that in spectacular form last year and that’s given us the opportunity to qualify.

“There’s still a lot of work to do and some big challenges ahead - Malmo first and foremost, who we have a lot of respect for.

"They’ve got a lot of quality in there team as well as a really strong mentality.

“I don’t think they’re a team full of ego, they all work extremely hard for each other.

"And in the right areas of the team they have got big quality. The captain (Anders Christiansen) is a fantastic player, the number nine (Antonio Colak) is a fantastic player so we will have to be right at it over the two legs to get the opportunity to get into the play-off first and foremost.

“Getting into the Champions League is not really the focus right now. It’s trying to get into that play-off round."