GIOVANNI VAN BRONCKHORST described the basis of his managerial methods as ‘work, work, work’ as he was unveiled as Rangers manager.

On his first night at the office, it was a case of job done for the champions as a place in the knockout rounds of the Europa League was earned for a third successive season.

This victory over Sparta Prague won’t be remembered as fondly as some of the famous continental clashes that Van Bronckhorst experienced during his playing career here.

But it was one to savour for very different reasons as the Dutchman began his reign with the win that ensured the champions will progress from Group A behind Lyon. The first objective has been achieved.

Goals in either half from Alfredo Morelos won it for Rangers. Just days after their Hampden humbling against Hibernian, this was much more like it.

These occasions so often brought the best out of Rangers under Steven Gerrard’s guidance over the last three years. The champions have now set the standard from which they must build with their new boss in the dugout.

As a red, white and blue tifo display – complete with a ‘Rangers FC – Pride of Glasgow’ banner fluttered in the Broomloan Stand, the 17th man to hold office at Ibrox was introduced to an expectant crowd before a ball was kicked.

The welcome was raucous. Van Bronckhorst strode purposefully down the tunnel and greeted his public with a wave before posing for a picture alongside his backroom team.

This was the moment the 46-year-old had coveted for some time. It was one that he savoured as the decibel levels were turned up once again.

The start was everything that the supporters would have demanded and that Van Bronckhorst would have expected. Rangers were at it from the off.

By the time Morelos opened the scoring after a quarter of an hour, Rangers were aggrieved not to have scored the goals that would have put them in a position to qualify.

Ryan Kent was agonisingly close to connecting with a Morelos cross inside the opening seconds, while Joe Aribo clipped the bar after Kent waltzed his way into the area.

There has been a lackadaisical, lethargic feeling around Rangers for large swathes of the campaign but Van Bronckhorst had inspired the ‘spark’ that Connor Goldson admitted was needed in the aftermath of the defeat to Hibernian. When Morelos slotted home to give the champions the lead, Ibrox was electric.

Ianis Hagi salvaged what could have been a lost cause as he slid in to divert a James Tavernier pass into the path of Morelos from the right channel.

The rest was left to the Colombian and the finish was clinical. From the edge of the area, Morelos picked a spot away from the despairing Dominik Holec and Rangers had the lead.

As the striker executed his familiar knee-slide celebration, complete with the inevitable shooshing gesture, Van Bronckhorst turned to his bench and delivered a series of fist pumps. Rangers were off and running and halfway there.

There was a feeling at that stage that it was only a matter of time before the second goal would arrive. The wait went beyond the break, though.

The best chance fell to Aribo. Rangers again had joy down the right and Hagi provided the cross but the finish wouldn’t follow.

Ibrox rose in anticipation, but Aribo chose not to nod the ball home and instead scooped it over as he stretched and gave Sparta a huge let-off when they were on the ropes.

It wasn’t a reprieve they could make the most of. Once again they were proving to be a limited side but Allan McGregor made an excellent stop to deny Martin Minchev at his near post.

Rangers would drop off slightly in the minutes before the break. They were never under any real threat, but the early zip wasn’t quite there as Van Bronckhorst continued to direct traffic from the touchline.

He didn’t have to wait long after the restart to celebrate once again. When Morelos got his second of the night, Rangers had one foot in the knockout rounds.

Kent should have scored either side of the decisive strike. His first effort was curled wide of the far post, while keeper Holec kept Sparta’s faint hopes alive with a smart block.

By that stage, he had already been undermined by his defence. As the visitors attempted to play out from the back, Filip Panák got caught in a state of panic and an aimless chip across goal was into the path of Morelos.

As his team-mates looked on in disbelieving despair, Morelos nodded home and sparked another round of evocative celebrations in the stands. That would ultimately do it for Rangers.

News of Brondby’s opener against Lyon, and the French equaliser and winner which quickly followed, didn’t seem to register around Ibrox. Each goal had a relevance to Rangers, but there was enough to focus on here without worrying about matters elsewhere as Van Bronckhorst’s side continued to search for their third to make sure they took care of their own business.

It should have been confirmed with a hat-trick from Morelos but a strike was blocked before he headed over and Van Bronckhorst turned to his bench for the first time.

Hagi would make way for Nathan Patterson. The youngster’s arrival was warmly welcomed, yet his role was interesting as he lined up ahead of his captain down the Rangers right.

Aribo added to the list of missed chances that were now beginning to stack up as he dinked an effort over from inside the area and it almost proved costly as Adam Karabec failed to beat McGregor from close range with a header at the back post.

Ibrox was becoming anxious. As comfortable as Rangers had been overall, another spell on the back foot – one which had come from nowhere once again – threatened to take the shine off Van Bronckhorst’s homecoming.

He had McGregor to thank in the end. A double save – the second of which from Matěj Pulkrab was simply world class as he lifted his leg to block a header on the line – ensured Rangers won by the required two goals.

The hard work has only just begun for Van Bronckhorst. On day one, it was a job well done for Rangers.