Rangers started their Champions League qualification journey with a win, on a night that still left more than a tinge of missed opportunity. 

Having raced into a two-goal lead and enjoyed more than enough opportunities to extend their dominance, Servette would halve the deficit with a Chris Bedia penalty and, despite playing the majority of the second half with 10 men, see out the game at 2-1. 

Our writers pick out their key points after tonight's match.

Cantwell is this team’s protagonist 

A surprising absentee from the starting 11 on Saturday, it didn’t take long for the 25-year-old to remind us all why he’s a key cog in this side. Cantwell brings an intangible energy off the ball and authority on it that’s so noticeably lacking in his absence. As an attacker, he offers so much more than goals and assists which also arrived with his move from Norwich in January. Cantwell’s a pure footballer and it’s the small details in his game that stand out. The tempo of his passes, positions assumed between the lines and an ability to rarely make errors. He set the tone with the pressure applied early on, leading to a penalty win and was involved throughout the lead-up to the second too; initially regaining possession before getting on the ball right at the base of midfield to help break Servette lines. Beale’s system hands freedom to creators and Cantwell took full advantage of the autonomy granted, grabbing hold of the game, picking up unpredictable positions and getting on the ball facing the game. Not enough of his teammates reached that same level. 

Joshua Barrie

Setting the tempo

It was imperative for Rangers to show a response to defeat against Kilmarnock and they did early on. Beale's men lacked urgency on Saturday but they started on the front foot tonight, imposing themselves on Servette. They moved the ball quickly and applied pressure on their opponents with Cantwell instrumental upon his return to the starting eleven. The Ibrox atmosphere on European nights can intimidate opponents - as witnessed on the run to Seville - and Servette looked shellshocked during the opening 15 minutes, although that tone would not continue throughout. Rangers’ early penalty award was a direct result of Cantwell’s anticipation and sharpness to nick in front of his defender and Tavernier made no mistake from the spot. One major criticism of Rangers’ display on Saturday was a lack of width but that was provided by Barisic for the second goal. John Souttar’s surging run started an excellent move, which culminated in Dessers tapping home from close range. The hosts barely threatened the Kilmarnock goal on Saturday but they attempted six shots during the opening 20 minutes at Ibrox. It wasn't a tempo that could be retained beyond the away side's penalty. 

Euan Robertson 

A chance for more? 

There was the opportunity for this tie to be over before Servette brought one back from the penalty spot. Elements of Rangers’ play in the first half encouraged and there was room exploitable for a third to put this tie out of sight before Dessers saw his handball penalised. Michael Beale’s side saw their playing style questioned at the weekend and undoubtedly, this was a game more conducive to demonstrating what they’re about. Central overloads, numbers in the box, creators playing in close combination, control in the first line of possession and a real, tangible aggression whenever possession was lost. The memory of this game won't be that, however, because of an inability to add goals to the pressure built. After the interval too much of that lacked and throughout, a final pass missed on the end of moves. Clearly, work still needs done to refine certain aspects because a more cohesive team performance would've killed this tie within the first half hour. There was the opportunity for this to be resounding, Rangers must now hope that the moments they missed tonight don't come back to bite next week. With that said, large elements of that performance promote promise. 

Joshua Barrie

How did the midfield balance out?

Beale has been searching for the perfect balance in midfield since his return. Often criticised for what's perceived to be an overly conservative approach, he prefers to play with two holding midfielders and tonight was no different. Ryan Jack sought to offer stability at the base of the midfield with Nico Raskin handed more attacking freedom. Cantwell's reintroduction into the middle brought an invention that wasn't evident at the weekend. Beale’s tactical plan centres around freeing up his more creative players to make an impact through interchanging positions, with Lammers afforded the license to float into pockets of space. While the midfield dynamic overall was more balanced than the defeat against Kilmarnock, it still wasn’t perfect and Rangers were too easy to play through at times in the first half with the game was too open. The perfect blend in the middle is a remedy still being searched for.

Euan Robertson 

A front three to still find finesse 

This was the first sighting of Beale’s three big summer frontline signings, Dessers, Danilo and Lammers, together. The former scored his first goal for the club and the very nature of it encouraged - a proper poacher’s strike with little to it other than appearing in the right spot at the right time. This team have seriously lacked players with that very attribute in recent seasons. Lammers’ big miss in the first half may well have been offside, and he was unfortunate to see a strike he connected with well following a Tavernier cut-back pushed wide by Mall. His two-footed ball manipulation impressed and the intensity with which he pressed whenever possession was surrendered stood out, although an end product at times lacked. Danilo, the latest arrival of all three, is clearly still getting up to top speed and playing slightly off the left, was tasked with carrying in transition a fair amount. Dessers and Danilo demonstrated some fledgling moments of invention if, as so often could be extended to this performance, the last pass, shot or touch just lacked. 

Joshua Barrie