RUUD GULLIT believes that Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s personable nature is bringing the best out of his Rangers players – but the Dutch great warned that beneath the manager’s cool and calm exterior, he will be feeling the pressure ahead of next week’s Europa League final.

As a player, Gullit rose to the very top of the sport and he believes that working under a coach that treats his squad well will motivate the team to repay their manager. The same thing happened to Gullit at Sampdoria when Sven Goran-Eriksson was in charge of the Serie A outfit and the former Netherlands internationalist admits he felt compelled to give his all for his coach.

Gullit moved into coaching after hanging up his boots and went on to manage Chelsea and Newcastle – where a certain Steve Clarke served as his assistant – and although he admits he was a little surprised when Van Bronckhorst took his first steps into management at Feyenoord, he believes the Rangers boss’ positive nature is getting the most out of the current crop at Ibrox.

“I never saw Gio becoming a manager – like Steve Clarke, he isn’t the loudest guy in the world,” Gullit said. “Steve is very reserved but has good knowledge of the game and Gio is like that.

“He is a bit like Carlo Ancelotti and Sven-Goran Eriksson. I remember signing for him at Sampdoria. He was so nice and I wanted to play for him and I didn’t want to make things difficult for him.

“I think it is the same as Giovanni. Players want to play for him, players will want to do what he asks.

“He wasn’t afraid to make the tough decisions but he does it with a smile.

“I’m a happy guy and I don’t like seeing all these guys who are grumpy and I love to have fun in what I am doing.

“I enjoyed being a coach but I enjoy my life much more now. I saw Phillip Cocu recently and he looked the business. I said to him he looked great after seeing him on the touchline and he looked horrible!

“As a manager you look tired but don’t feel it. It is stressful for Gio right now, when you are trying to win things you are always under stress. When you go into the final it is a difficult situation and you are desperate to win it for the club.

“You have the responsibility for so many people and your man-management is so important. It takes a lot for managers to be in charge of everything that is happening, especially in circumstances like this.”

Van Bronckhorst enjoyed a rather illustrious career of his own, competing for some of the biggest honours in the sport, and Gullit thinks this experience will prove to be valuable ahead of next week’s showpiece occasion in Seville.

“I think it could help Gio and Rangers the fact he has played in Champions League and World Cup finals,” he said. “He knows how it is for the players and how to handle that.

“It is a week of stress leading up to it, it’s tension, it is always like that. But you have to understand that the tension you feel and how you react.

“It’s like if a lion comes towards you – you go into a mode where you react immediately and the stress helps you to perform. Without it, you might struggle to reach the levels.

“You have to embrace it, some people think stress is a bad thing, but it isn’t.

“Going into a European final is a good stress, lots of people have stresses about how to feed their family - that’s real stress and it’s difficult to get rid of.”

Gullit continued: “The players have to handle the pressure as a coach you can only prepare them. They have to do it and it is out of Gio’s control.

“As a manager you want to be involved with the big clubs. As a player you lose the tension when the whistle goes and you are just playing.

“As a coach you feel it the whole game and you have to give it to the players and let them do their thing.”

Gullit added that there is one key component that is necessary if Rangers are to defeat Eintracht Frankfurt and lift European silverware for the first time in 50 years: belief.

And with the Ibrox club having seen off spirited challenges from Borussia Dortmund, Braga and RB Leipzig during their run to the Europa League final, that is one commodity that will not be in short supply in Govan – even if the team relinquished their Premiership crown.

“You have to believe in it! Yeah. That’s the biggest point,” Gullit added. “You can see both teams couldn’t achieve domestically and in Europe. They couldn’t do enough in their league while also doing well in Europe. It’s so difficult.

“The squad is maybe not big enough. Only the big teams with 25 players can do it.”

Ruud Gullit was speaking ahead of his guest appearance at Beatson Cancer Charity’s Sporting Dinner in Glasgow.