Archive for October, 2011

14’s Hit Hibs For Six

October 30, 2011

Rangers 6 Hibernian 0

With this week’s 19’s game clashing with the first team fixture I got my fix of youth football by watching the under 14’s comfortable win over Hibernian at Murray Park on Sunday afternoon. Rangers took an early lead when Greig Taylor won the ball in midfield and sent John Cunningham through to carry on into the box before shooting past the keeper.

Only a further three minutes had passed before Rangers doubled their lead, Cameron Price sent the overlapping Lewis White clear on the left, John Cunningham got his head to the full-back’s cross and  it broke for Gary McGreish to fire into the net. Ross Lyon then fed McGreish on the right and he went past two defenders before hitting the byline, his ball into the box was laid back to Ross Lyon by Cunningham but the midfielder’s shot was just too high.

Ross Lyon’s then had another chance and again McGreish’s run to the byline created the opportunity, Lyon’s shooting just wide from the winger’s cutback. Josh Jeffries then cut across the box before playing wide to McGreish and the winger’s cross was touched on to the bar by the Hibs keeper.

Rangers scored a third six minutes into the second period, the unmarked John Cunningham headed Grieg Taylor’s corner from the right past the keeper. Cunningham came close to a third goal when he headed Lewis White’s cross from the left just wide. The fourth goal was not delayed too long, Ross McCrorie played the ball forward to Gary McGreish who cut inside past a defender before sending a shot crashing off the underside of the bar with John Cunningham on hand to nod past the stranded keeper.

Rangers fifth goal was a solo effort from Ross Lyon, winning the ball in midfield he strode past a couple of defenders before finding the net from the edge of the box. The scoring was complete with the best move of the match, a good passing move was concluded when Max Ashmore and Ross Lyon combined to send John Cunningham through to find the net.

Full-Time:- Rangers 6 Hibernian 0

Rangers Squad:- Robbie McCrorie; Ross McCrorie, Lewis White, Jason Krones, Reagan Milne, Cameron Price, Gary McGreish, Ross Lyon, John Cunningham, Greig Taylor, Josh Jeffries, Jamie Brandon, Max Ashmore, Danny Kelly.

Wolves Visit Murray Park

October 26, 2011

Tonight provided an opportunity to watch Rangers U12’s take on their counterparts from Premiership side Wolverhampton Wanderer’s academy, the English side having gone down 3-2 to a late goal against Celtic on Monday night. The game was played over three thirty minute periods on the astroturf pitch which was reduced in size by a few yards all round, with smaller goals on the six yard line.

Rangers took an early lead when Stephen Kelly sent a looping shot from the edge of the box over the keeper and into the top corner. Midfielder Kelly continued to look the most likely to score again coming close on several occasions, after combining with Carlo Pignatiello his netbound shot was deflected wide, he then brought out a fine diving save from the Wolves keeper after he won the ball at the edge of the box and finally Aaron Reid broke down the left and when he cut the ball back Kelly’s effort beat the keeper but was cleared off the line by a back tracking defender.

The visitors were then to draw level against the run of play, with their striker through on goal Lewis Muir produced a fine save but was helpless as the rebound was converted. Rangers were soon back in front and again Stephen Kelly was prominent, when the keeper parried his shot Pignatiello was on hand to cut the ball back and give Aaron Mooney a simple tap in.

Rangers increased their lead when Pignatiello sent Mooney through on goal, the keeper saved his shot on goal but the ball went back to the Rangers striker and he cut the ball back to Cameron Palmer who found the net from around the penalty spot. Although the English side were seen less as an attacking force they were dangerous when the ventured forward and after a good move down the right they pulled a goal back from a shot just inside the box.

Another break down the right almost produced an equaliser but their big striker was denied by a fine Darren Montgomery save. Kelly then split the Wolves defence with a pass inside the full-back to send Andy Boyd racing down the right, his low cross was perfect for Dylan Patterson to fire past the keeper from close range. A few minutes later the Wolves keeper dived to his right to deny Jordan Houston after he cut in from the left before driving for goal.

A superb pass from central defence from Jack Thompson sent Dylan Patterson through and he continued into the box before calmly shooting past the keeper. Patterson had a chance to complete a quick fire hat-trick when Kelly and Boyd combined to send him through, this time shooting across goal and just wide of the post.

Wolves when then caught in possession trying to play out of defence, the keeper doing well to block Cameron Kerr’s shot but was left helpless as Carlo Pignatiello netted the rebound. Rangers keeper Montgomery then produced a fine save tipping a free-kick over the bar, from the corner when the ball was cleared to the edge of the box where it was fired back and came off the cross-bar, in the ensuing scramble a Wolves player forced the ball over the line to pull another goal back.

Pignatiello then chased a ball down the left towards the byline and when he cut the ball back into the box Dylan Patterson was well placed to fire home and complete his hat-trick. Rangers then cut through the Wolves defence with a fine passing move, Houston’s shot was parried and as the ball rolled towards the line a defender got back to clear. Wolves looked certain to reply at the other end until Montgomery stunned the visitor’s with a brilliant tip over. The scoring was complete when  Andy Boyd progressed down the right and his cross found its way to Jordan Houston at the back post where he controlled the ball before shooting past the keeper.

Full-Time:- Rangers 8 Wolverhampton Wanderers 3

Rangers Squad:- Lewis Muir (Gk), Darren Montgomery (Gk), Matthew Innes, Scott Gray, Lewis Mayo, Jack Thompson, Stephen Kelly, Jordan Houston, Cameron Palmer, Carlo Pignatiello, Aaron Mooney, Aaron Reid, Cameron Wray, Matthew Shiels, Andy Boyd, Dylan Patterson, Cameron Kerr.

Youths Secure Win

October 22, 2011

Dundee United 2 Rangers 3

Rangers Under 19’s secured a more comfortable win than the scoreline suggests at St. Andrews this afternoon, although United’s  second goal meant an edgy closing nine minutes. With Kyle McAusland suspended and Kim Skogsrud on international duty it meant a reshuffle in defence with Luca Gasparrotto coming in to partner Adel Gafaiti.

Rangers started brightly and when Marc Dyer was fouled on the left hand angle of the box Barrie McKay tested Phillip Anderson from the free kick which the keeper saved low to his left. Two minutes later Kamil Wiktorski tried his luck from fully thirty-five yards and only just cleared the United crossbar.

Anderson was again in action after five minutes, Tom Skogsrud passed the ball forward to Dyer and the home keeper held his effort from wide on the left just under the bar. Rangers pressure was to tell when they took the lead on ten minutes, McKay had possession wide on the right and passed inside to Wiktorski who found Dyer breaking into the box, Anderson dived to his left to parry his shot but Callum Gallagher was on hand to knock the ball into the net.

Three minutes later Rangers came close to doubling their lead, McKay cut in from the right and his shot took a double deflection off two United defenders before looping over Anderson and crashing off the crossbar. The home side then equalised with their first meaningful attack of the game, Gafaiti was hesitant allowing Ryan Ferguson to break towards Rangers penalty area before playing in Shane Campbell to shoot past Alan Smith.

Rangers were soon back on attack, and when Gallagher challenged for a Skogsrud cross the ball broke to Nikolaj Kohlert who’s net bound shot was deflected wide. From the resultant corner the ball broke to Josh Robinson and his shot was headed off the line, the United defence managed to clear their area but only as far as McKay who was only just wide from the edge of the box. Midway through the half United came close to taking the lead, former Ranger Michael Noble’s free-kick from the right hand angle of the box had Smith beaten as it came back off the bar, in the ensuing scramble Alan Smith produced two fantastic point-blank saves before the Rangers defence scrambled clear.

Eight minutes before the break Anderson dropped Skogsrud corner from the right, with the ball bouncing a yard from the goal line and several Rangers players close by a goal looked certain before a United defender appeared to hook the ball over the crossbar. This time the corner was from the right and Lewis McLeod’s delivery was perfect for Luca Gasparotto to rise and head into the top corner.

Half-Time:-Dundee United 1 Rangers 2

United almost caught Rangers cold in the opening minute after the break, Gafaiti was again hesitant this time in dealing with a long ball allowing Ferguson in on goal to knock the ball past the advancing Smith, but Gaparotto had time to get back and clear. Rangers then increased their lead six minutes later, following a throw in on the left Skogrud’s ball into the box from the left saw Barrie McKay beat the hesitant Anderson to the ball and roll it into the empty net.

A minute later Robinson played the ball forward to Gallagher and a superb touch and turn took him clear of the defence only to drag his shot across goal and wide. The Rangers striker then had another chance  latching onto a Kohlert ball over the top , the result being the same, dragging his shot across goal and wide.

As the final ten minutes approached McKay chased the ball on the left before taking on Ross Gilmour and testing Anderson. A flowing move then created another chance, McLeod and McKay working a one-two on the left before McKay passed inside to Wiktorski who had Anderson diving low to save.  From the keeper’s clearance United got back into the match, Gasparotto failed to deal with the long ball and keeper Smith advanced to find himself in no mans land, the United substitute Glenn Hawe heading over the keeper into the empty net.

In a game they had been in control of the Ibrox youngsters were now hanging on as the game entered the final minute, from a throw down near the byline on the left Robert Thomson managed to turn and Smith blocked his shot from a narrow angle with his legs, from the corner the Rangers defence failed to clear and McLeod had to clear a goal bound shot from the line.  Rangers still had time to have a good shout for a penalty, a solo run from the tireless Gallagher saw him go past a couple of defenders before going down under a challenge, the referee appeared to be about to point to the spot before waving play on.

Full-Time:- Dundee United 2 Rangers 3

Dundee United:- Phillip Anderson; Ross Gilmour, Jim Thomson, John Young, Michael Noble; Ryan Ferguson (Craig Bell 80mins), Scott Smith, Jordan Moore (Glenn Hawe 61mins), Ryan Lundie, Robert Thomson; Shane Campbell (Ryan Gauld 64mins)

Not Used:-  John Soutar,

Rangers:- Alan Smith; Josh Robinson, Luca Gasparotto, Adel Gafaiti, Tom Skogsrud; Barrie McKay, Nikolaj Kohlert (Adam Hunter 76mins), Kamil Wiktorski, Lewis McLeod, Marc Dyer (Ewan McNeil 61mins); Callum Gallagher

Not Used:- Blair Currie (GK), Sam McMahon, Jack Werndly, Aaron McGregor, Robbie McIntyre.

17’s Score Four Against Ayr United

October 11, 2011

Rangers 4 Ayr United 1

A Rangers side made up of mainly first year Under 17’s had a comfortable win over Ayr United at Murray Park on Tuesday night. The young Rangers side had to come from behind after the Ayrshire side took the lead after only three minutes.

A corner from the right was cleared from the Rangers penalty area and a great strike crashed of the crossbar, Blair Currie in the Rangers goal was helpless as the ball struck his back and bounced over the line. The Ayr youngsters had no time to settle of their lead with Rangers replying almost immediately. The trialist strikers combined to draw Rangers level, Trialist No 9 broke down the right and his pass inside found Trialist No 10 who had time to pick his spot.

Two minutes later Rangers were in front and it was a second goal for Trialist No 10, capitalizing on a slip by the Ayr defence he broke through to beat the keeper. Ten minutes later the visitors had a great chance to draw level, from a corner on the left the ball was knocked goalwards and Danny Stoney was adjudged to have handled the ball on the line, but the Ayr player blasted the spot kick high over the bar.

Rangers were straight back on attack and when a ball from the right was cleared to the edge of the box Stoney brought out a fine save from the keeper low to his left. The Ayr keeper then had to be smart of his line to save at the feet of Trialist No 10 after he was played through by Scott Roberts. Just after the half-hour Stoney and Jamie Mills combined on the left and from the latter’s cross Tom Walsh headed just wide of the right hand post.

Half-Time:- Rangers 2 Ayr United 1

Rangers increased their lead eight minutes into the second-half, Mills cross from the left was glanced towards the back post by an Ayr United defender where Scott Roberts was on hand to net from close range.  The scoring was complete on 63 minutes with the goal of the game, a great run from full-back by Kjeld McIntyre took him past two defenders before he found  Luke Hammond, his pass split the defence and Trialist No 10 completed his hat-trick with a sublime finish over the diving keeper.

Full-Time:- Rangers 4 Ayr United 1

Rangers:-  Blair Currie; Kjeld McIntyre, Ryan Sinnamon, Craig Halkett (Robert McLardie 46mins), Jamie Mills (Ross Kellock 62 mins); Scott Roberts, Dylan Dykes (Lewis Morgan 63mins), Tom Walsh (Trialist No 14 55mins), Danny Stoney (Luke Hammond 54mins); Trialist No.9, Trialist No.10.

Youth Update

October 9, 2011

Rangers 2 Falkirk 0

This afternoon I took in Rangers U17’s game against Falkirk at Murray Park, the first division side have a good youth setup so these games are usually worth watching. Rangers eventually ran out winners with two second-half goals from corner kicks.

It was the visitors that had the first real chance of the match after quarter of an hour, it was created with a one-two the right hand side of the box and Liam Kelly did well to come of his line to block with his legs. Ten minutes later Rangers threatened the Falkirk goal when Andy Murdoch played the ball inside to Stuart Urquhart and his shot was powerful but straight at the keeper who gathered at the second attempt.

Just after the half hour Rangers had a great chance when Jamie Burrows was through on goal but his attempted lob lacked height and the keeper saved. The next chance came from the left, Charlie Telfer passed inside to Danny Stoney who setup a long-range shot from Darren Ramsay which was just wide of the keeper’s left hand post.

Half-Time:- Rangers 0 Falkirk 0

The visitor’s came close just after the break, the Rangers defence cleared the ball from their penalty area and the effort from the edge of the box was just wide of Kelly’s left hand post. A few minutes later Rangers had a chance at the other end, Burrows heading just wide of the right hand post from Fraser Aird’s right-wing cross.

The home side continued to press and the next effort came from long-range, Andy Murdoch breaking forward and shooting over from around 25 yards. Ten minutes of the half had passed when Rangers took the lead, the Falkirk defence failed to clear  Aird’s corner from the right and in the ensuing scramble Darren Ramsay fired through a ruck of players from around eight yards.

Another Aird corner from the right was the source of Rangers second goal with Luca Gasparotto’s close range header just crossing the line.

Full-Time:- Rangers 2 Falkirk 0

Rangers:- Liam Kelly; Ryan Sinnamon (Tom Walsh 72mins), Craig Halkett (Ross Kellock 76mins), Luca Gasparotto, Jordan Wilson; Charlie Telfer ( Scott Roberts 75mins), Andy Murdoch, Stuart Urquhart (Danny Stoney 30mins), Fraser Aird; Jamie Burrows (Dylan Dykes 70mins), Darren Ramsay.

Rangers 4 Falkirk 1

At the same time on an adjacent park Rangers U15’s had a comfortable win of their Falkirk counterparts, the goals coming from Hussein Kaware, Adam Wilson, Keir Whitfield and Ryan Hardie.

Youths Friendly Win At Falkirk

October 7, 2011

Falkirk 0 Rangers 3

It was an easy decision for my Friday night football, despite the various international games on offer on the TV it was off to Falkirk Stadium to take in the youths latest friendly against their Falkirk counterparts. In a good opening spell the Ibrox youngsters missed a host great oppertunities in the opening twenty minutes.

In the opening minute the Falkirk defence missed  a long ball and to leave Callum Gallagher in the clear but the Rangers striker miss controlled the ball and it ran safely through to the keeper. Two minutes later Lewis McLeod sent Gallagher clear on the right, he made his way to the byline and from his low cross Tom Skogsrud was denied by a good defensive challenge on the edge of the six yard box and when the ball broke to Aaron McGregor his shot was deflected wide.

On five minutes with a carbon copy of the previous move McLeod again sent Gallagher down the right, this time the home keeper did well to gather his low cross. At this stage chances were coming every few minutes, next up Tom Skogsrud robbed a defender inside the box near the byline and his cutback gave Barrie McKay a chance but he shot wide.

On twelve minutes McKay played Gallagher through, the striker held of a defender but was denied by the advancing keeper, the ball landed back at McKay who looked certain to score but the keeper produced an even better save to deny the Rangers striker. Five minutes later Gallagher won the race and beat the keeper to a through ball, his lob looked destined for the net before a defender got back to clear for a corner.

Just after the twenty-minute mark Rangers got a lucky break, when the Falkirk striker made his was into the box along the left hand byline he was brought down by Adel Gafaiti for what looked like a clear penalty but the referee gave a free kick just outside the box, which came to nothing as  it was fired across goal. Rangers were next to threaten on 34 minutes and it was another run down the right from the tireless Gallagher, from his cross McGregor’s shot from the edge of the box was just wide of the keeper’s left hand post.

Right on the half-time whistle some neat play on the right hand angle of the Rangers box created a chance for the home side which had Blair Currie stretching to hold under the bar.

Half-Time:- Falkirk 0 Rangers 0

Five minutes after the break Rangers took the lead, Tom Skogsrud sent in a dangerous corner from the right and his twin brother Kim Skogsrud forced the ball over the line from close range although the Falkirk defender on the line should really have cleared. Two minutes later another Tom Skogsrud corner from the right and Rangers had doubled their lead, Luca Gasparotto challenged for the header and when it dropped inside the six yard box Callum Gallagher volleyed past the keeper.

Another corner provided Rangers third and again Tom Skogsrud played a central part, but this time the Norwegian was on the end of a Lewis McLeod corner from the left to volley home. Ten minutes later yet another run from Gallagher, this time down the left and when his cross was cleared to the edge of the box McLeod’s effort looked to be heading for the top corner until the keeper produced a fine save high to his left.

The home side almost grabbed a consolation in the final minute,  from a free-kick  on the left hand angle of the box the shot beat Currie but bounced clear off his left hand post.

Full-Time:- Falkirk 0 Rangers 3

Ranger:- Blair Currie; Andy Murdoch (Luca Gasparotto 46mins), Adel Gafaiti, Kyle McAusland, Kim Skogsrud (Fraser Aird 70mins); Lewis McLeod, Kamil Wiktorski (Darren Ramsay 70mins), Aaron McGregor (Stuart Urquhart 57mins), Tom Skogsrud; Barrie McKay (Marc Dyer 62mins), Callum Gallagher (Jack Werndly 77mins).

U14’s Hit Pars For Four

October 3, 2011

Rangers 4 Dunfermline Athletic 0

This weekend gave me a chance to take in one of the younger team’s games when I took in the Under 14’s game at Murray Park on Sunday afternoon. It took Ally Dawson’s side only six minutes to open the scoring when John Cunningham held of a couple of challenges before shooting past the keeper.

Five minutes later Rangers doubled their lead, Greig Taylor played the ball forward to Cunningham at the edge of the box and the striker held off a challenge before playing the ball across the box to Cameron Price who found the net via the keeper’s left hand post.

With these games being played over three thirty minute periods Dunfermline had a great chance six minutes before the end of the first period, their striker went past keeper Robbie McCrorie but from a tight angle his effort went across goal and wide.

Five minutes into the second period there was a chance at each end in quick succession, first an effort from the visitors when narrowly over the at the other end Cunningham shot across goal after breaking into the left hand side of the box. Five minutes later the Pars keeper did well to touch a Price effort from the edge of the box on to the crossbar.

Rangers continued to press and the keeper was again in action when he saved a Scott Moore effort at his near post after the Rangers wide man cut in from the left. A minute before the end of the second period Rangers grabbed a third, a good passing move eventually saw the ball arrive at Gary McGreish on the right who hit the byline, his cutback found Cunningham who laid the ball back into the path of Cameron Price who found the net from around the penalty spot.

Rangers fourth goal came just under ten minutes into the final period when Ross McCrorie headed home from a Ross Lyons corner from the right. The final effort of note saw Moore cut in from the left and the Dunfermline keeper saved low at his near post.

Full-Time:- Rangers 4 Dunfermline Athletic 0

Rangers Squad:- Robbie McCrorie (GK), Ross Lyons, Lewis ?????, Ross McCrorie, Lewis White, Max Ashmore, Scott Moore, Cameron Price, John Cunningham, Greig Taylor, Gary McGreish, Danny Kelly, Jamie ?????.

All Square At Bathgate

October 1, 2011

Motherwell 1 Rangers 1

Rangers Under 19’s were held to  a 1-1 draw by Motherwell at Creamery Park , Bathgate this morning. Billy Kirkwood’s side held a half-time lead after controlling the first-half but the second half saw a reversal of that with the Fir Park side in the ascendancy and a share of the points was probably fair.

Rangers were first to threaten after seven minutes when Kamil Wiktorski robbed Steven Hetherington but his effort was just to high and cleared the crossbar. A slack Motherwell free-kick on the halfway line after sixteen minutes allowed Barrie McKay to break  forward and again the shot was just too high.

Midway through the half Kyle McAusland got his head to a Robbie Crawford corner from the right but yet again it cleared the crossbar. A Rangers goal was only delayed and it came  after twenty-six minutes. Lewis McLeod won the ball on the halfway line and sent McKay down the right, when he played the ball across the box Robbie Crawford had timed his run perfectly to net from around ten yards,

Rangers continued to be in control and two minutes before the break a long-range McKay shot had keeper Willie Muir saving low to his left.

Half-Time:-Motherwell 0 Rangers 1

Ten minutes after the break Motherwell has their first real effort on goal when former Ranger Steven Hetherington’s effort from around 25 yards was saved by Alan Smith low to his left. Rangers replied when McKay switched play with a cross field pass from left to right to Callum Gallagher and Muir held his shot at the near post.

Two minutes later a run from midfield took Hetherington past three Rangers players, his pass inside Ewan McNeil set up a great chance for Keiran McGachie who knocked the ball past Smith with McAusland getting back to clear. On the hour a neat back-heel from Lee Erwin sent up another chance for McGachie this time Smith tipping the ball over.

On 71 minutes Motherwell were back on level terms, when Ewan McNeil and Adel Gafaiti both went for a long ball they only succeeded in taking each other out and allowedn Motherwell to break into the left side of the penalty area, when the ball was played across goal Keiran McGachie had a simple task to net at the far post. The home side had a chance to claim all three points in the final minute, following a corner on the right Ewan Murray’s overhead kick sent the ball back across goal but Erwin could only knock the ball over from close range.

Full-Time:- Motherwell 1 Rangers 1

Motherwell:- Willie Muir; Darren Brownlie, Euan Murray, Adam Cummins, Zane Francis-Angol; Josh Watt (Craig Moore 85mins), Hermann Mboa Mekongo (Adam Ashgar 71mins), Steven Hetherington, Keiran Mac Donald; Keiran McGachie, Lee Erwin

Not Used :- Ross Stewart (GK), Michael Lynch, Jack Leitch

Rangers:- Alan Smith; Ewan McNeil (Josh Robinson 71mins), Kyle McAusland, Adel Gafaiti, Kim Skogsrud; Lewis McLeod, Kamil Wiktorski, Robbie Crawford, Tom Skogsrud ( Fraser Aird 69 mins); Barrie McKay ( Nicolaj Kolhert 58mins), Callum Gallagher

Not Used:- Blair Currie (GK), Jack Werndly, Darren Ramsay, Marc Dyer