Development Fixtures Opening Weekend

Aberdeen provided the opposition for the opening weekend of Development Fixtures, with the Under 13’s and 14’s games taking place at Murray Park, while the 15’s and 17’s traveled north. So the game for me this weekend was the under 14’s clash at Murray Park.

Rangers 1 Aberdeen 1

Two excellent teams served up an enjoyable encounter, the visitor’s having the better of the first period, with Rangers having the upper hand in the next two. Although Aberdeen were in control for most of the first period chances were few, but they looked likely to take the lead on eighteen minutes. The attack came down the left and when the ball was only cleared as far as an Aberdeen player around the penalty spot his shot looked destined for the top corner until Brian Kinnear leapt to his left to clutch the ball and produce a fine save. The nearest Rangers came in the first period was when Billy Gilmour’s reverse pass sent Dapo Mebude chasing into the penalty area with the keeper coming of his line to save bravely at the striker’s feet.

In the opening minute of the second period Aberdeen tested Brian Kinnear from distance with the Rangers keeper saving comfortably. A few minutes later a powerful run from Dapo Mebude took him past two defenders and as he entered the penalty area it took a superb tackle from a ‘Dons defender to clear the danger.

Rangers came close to taking the lead just after the ten minute mark, Danny Finlayson broke forward from defence before sending Dapo Mebude down the left, Kieran McKechnie got on the end of his low cross but was denied by a point-blank save from the keeper and when Niyah Joseph sent the rebound towards the net it was headed off the line by an Aberdeen defender. Just after the midpoint of the period Dapo Mebude attacked the left side of the box and when the ball was cleared to the edge of the box Billy Gilmour’s shot brought out a save from the keeper low to his left.

With around five minutes of the period remaining the visitor’s took the lead, a superb pass inside the left-back position released their attacker on the right side of the penalty area and he strode on to shoot past Nicky Hogarth. Rangers responded immediately and Kieran McKechnie sent Dapo Mebude racing clear, he tried to chip the advancing keeper who stood tall enough to make the save.

There was still time for a chance at each end before the period ended, the first came from an Aberdeen attack on the left side of Rangers penalty box but the shot could only find the side netting. At the other end Billy Gilmour’s pass split the Aberdeen defence to send Dapo Mebude through on the keeper, on this occasion he tried to round the keeper who dived at the striker’s feet to dispossess him.

The first chance of the final period came just before the turn around, from Dylan Patterson’s corner from the right Aiden Gibb arrived deep inside the six yard box but could only knock the ball over the bar. A few minutes after the turn around Dylan Patterson played a corner on the left to Ben Williamson on the edge of the box, his superb strike had the keeper beaten but the ball clipped the crossbar on the way over.

As the game entered the final eight minutes the move of the match carved out a chance for Rangers, Dylan Patterson and Niyah Joseph exchanged several passes to open up the goal for the latter from the left side of the box but he shot wide of the far post. Rangers and Niyah Joseph were not to be denied and sixty seconds later, he showed great feet to evade two defenders on the edge of the box before shooting past the keeper low into his bottom right hand corner.

Full-Time:- Rangers 1 Aberdeen 1

Rangers Squad:- Brian Kinnear (Gk), Nicky Hogarth (Gk), Nathan Patterson, Andy Rodden, Danny Finlayson, Aiden Gibb, Ben Williamson, Kieran McKechnie, Billy Gilmour, Dapo Mebude, Dylan Patterson, Niyah Joseph, Jamie Walker, Ruaridh McIntyre, Trialist.

Footnote:- At the save time Rangers under 13’s recorded a comfortable 7-1 win over the ‘Dons, the goals coming from Kai Kennedy (2), Kieran Dickson, Ally Munro, Jason Campbell, Josh Henderson & Matty Yates.

Meanwhile up in Aberdeen the Under 15’s recorded a 2-1 win, and the 17’s shared four goals with their Aberdeen counterparts.

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