Annan Athletic 5 Rangers 2
Rangers Under 20’s/reserves promising pre-season came down earth with a bump, going down heavily to Annan Athletic in Steven Sloan’s Testimonial last night. Rangers never recovered from a poor first half and despite improvements after the break Annan ran out comfortable winners.
The home side took the lead after seven minutes, Liam Kelly started to come for Steven Black’s long ball but hesitated on the edge of his box giving Stuart McColm time and space to lob the ball over his head and into the net. Rangers then had a let-off just over ten minutes later, Stuart McColm’s corner from the right found the head of Peter Weatherston and the ball bounced off Liam Kelly’s left hand post with the keeper beaten.
The game had just passed the half-hour mark when the home side increased their lead, Martin McNiff’s cross from the left went all the way to Rabin Omar inside the right side of the penalty area and his shot found the net via the inside of the far post. At this stage Rangers best had been a couple of tame efforts that former Rangers keeper Blair Currie dealt with comfortably. Seven minutes before the break Ryan Sinnamon in possession wide right passed inside to Darren Ramsay on the angle of the box, he cut inside before shooting just wide of Blair Currie’s left hand post.
Within three minutes Annan increased their lead, Matty Flynn attacked the centre Rangers defence before exchanging passes with Peter Weatherston and beating Liam Kelly with a neat finish.
Half-Time:- Annan Athletic 3 Rangers 0
There was less than five minutes of the second half gone when Rangers pulled a goal back, Scott Roberts corner from the left found a late run into the box from Ross McCrorie and got to the ball ahead of Blair Currie to head into the net. Rangers came close again soon after, Ryan Sinnamon attacked down the right before passing to Darren Ramsay on the edge of the box, the ball was laid back into the path of Dylan Dykes who shot narrowly over.
The Ibrox youngsters created and missed a further chance just after the hour, Ryan Hardie held the ball up midway inside the Annan half and laid it back to Darren Ramsay, his pass freed Scott Roberts breaking into the left side of the penalty area but he shot across goal and wide of the far post. The home side increased their lead midway through the half, Luca Gasparotto should have dealt with a ball heading towards the corner flag on the left but he was robbed of possession by Smart Osadolor who continued along the byline before shooting past Liam Kelly.
Annan came close to a fifth goal within a couple of minutes, Josh Todd attacked the left side of the box and the ball was moved across the area via Smart Osadolor to Jamie Watson who’s shot beat Liam Kelly but was headed off the goal line by Ross McCrorie. As the game entered the final quarter-hour Rangers grabbed a second with their best move of the night, Andy Murdoch played a one-two with Dylan Dykes on the right side of the box that took him to the byline, his low cross was fired past Blair Currie by Scott Roberts.
Within a couple of minutes a quick corner on the right presented a shooting chance for Josh Jeffries from the angle of the box that flashed across goal and wide of the far post. Annan responded by scoring a fifth goal with nine minutes remaining, Dan Wadge got to the byline on the left and his cutback was slammed past Liam Kelly by Smart Osalodor. Rangers had a chance in the final minute to put a better reflection on the scoreline, Max Ashmore picked out the unmarked Ross McCrorie with a pass from just inside the Annan half, with the goal gaping the Rangers defender volleyed over.
Full-Time:- Annan Athletic 5 Rangers 2
Annan Athletic Squad:- Blair Currie (Gk), Jordan Hart (Gk), Steven Black, Steven Swinglehurst, Martin McNiff, Peter Watson, Steven Sloan, Rabin Omar, Matty Flynn, Peter Weatherston, Josh Todd, Stuart McColm, Smart Osalodor, Connor Liddell, Dan Wadge, Jamie Watson, Scott Norman, Benji Wagner, Greg MacDonald, Dan Wood.
Rangers:- Liam Kelly; Ryan Sinnamon (Max Ashmore 63mins), Craig Halkett (Ross McCrorie HT), Luca Gasparotto, Lewis White; Andy Murdoch; Ross Lyon (Josh Jeffries HT), Robbie Crawford (Dylan Dykes HT); Darren Ramsay (Danny Stoney 63mins), Ryan Hardie, Callum Gallagher (Scott Roberts HT).
Not Used:- Kieran Wright (Gk).