This weekend’s youth fixtures saw the 15’s and 17’s travel through to Riccarton to face Hearts. I decided to stay in the west and take in the 13’s and 14’s games against the same opponents.
Rangers 1 Hearts 2
First up this morning was the U13’s clash which Hearts edged, Rangers had several one on ones with the keeper which they failed to convert and paid the penalty.
After a tame opening spell Rangers got to grips with that game in the second half of the first period. The first chance came when Reegan Aitken passed to Aaron Lyall inside the left side of the penalty area but he shot wide of the near post. The same player had a chance sixty seconds later when Matthew Collins won the ball and passed to Aaron Lyall who on this occasion shot straight at the keeper.
Rangers continued to press and when Matthew Henderson won the ball on the left side of the penalty area he went past a defender before crashing a shot off the crossbar. A minute later Reegan Aitken cut in from the left and teed up Aaron Lyall who shot just wide of the far post.
Two minutes before the end of the period Rangers took the lead from the penalty spot, when Reegan Aitken passed to Aaron Lyall inside the box he was bundled over and the referee pointed to the spot, he stepped up to convert from twelve yards. Hearts equalised early in the second period, the attack took them to the byline on the right and when the ball was played across goal it was knocked into the net at the far post.
Rangers replied when Robbie Fraser’s ball over the top of the Hearts defence sent Reegan Aitken clear with the keeper saving his shot at the near post. The visitors then threatened with a quick break attacking through the middle but the shot was wide of Grant Thackray’s left hand post.
Hearts again hit Rangers on the break, this time down the left, they advanced into the box but the shot was dragged wide of the near post. Another Robbie Fraser pass sent Reegan Aitken through, the keeper advanced from goal to make a block with a defender following up to complete the clearance.
Rangers continued to have the bulk of possession in the final period but were not creating clear cut chances. With seven minutes remaining a ball over the top sent Hearts down the right and into the penalty area where the shot across Grant Thackray found the far corner of the net.
Full-Time:- Rangers 1 Hearts 2
Rangers Squad:- Jay Hogarth (Gk), Grant Thackray (Gk), Rhys Caves, Matthew Henderson, Adam Devine, Aiden Berry, Leon King, Matthew Collins, Robbie Fraser, Aaron Lyall, Lewis Robertson, Reegan Aitken, Lorenzo Giovannazi, Greg Chalmers, Alex Lowry, Callum McComb.
Rangers 6 Hearts 0
In this afternoon’s game Rangers U14’s recorded a comfortable win in a game that was spoiled by some eccentric refereeing with two Hearts players seeing red cards.
Rangers took the lead on eleven minutes, Kai Kennedy passed to Blair Rossiter wide on the left who played the ball forward to Owen McGinty, he shrugged of the challenge of a defender to progress into the box and beat the keeper from a narrow angle. The visitors should have levelled five minutes later, a corner from the right was headed back across goal but fired over from close range.
Rangers replied when Kyle McLelland sent the ball out to Kai Kennedy wide on the left, he picked out Euan Deveney’s run into the box with the Hearts keeper diving to his left to turn away the full-back’s shot. At the other end a free-kick on the edge of the box just right of centre was curled over the wall and Brian Kinnear was forced to dive to his left to turn the ball wide.
Rangers replied with a superb Owen McGinty twenty-five yarder that the keeper got down to his right to produce a fine save. A couple of minutes before the end of the period the referee adjudged Simon Millar was fouled just inside the left hand angle of the box with Matty Yates converting from the spot.
In the opening minute of the second period Owen McGinty in possession on the right passed inside to Kai Kennedy, he tried to take on two defenders on the edge of the box and the ball broke back to Owen McGinty who’s shot beat the keeper but came back off the crossbar. Rangers then grabbed a third goal, Ciaran Dickson played the ball forward to Owen McGinty on the edge of the box and his shot beat the keeper and came back off the cross bar but on this occasion Simon Millar followed up to knock the ball into the net. Soon after the referee showed a Hearts defender a red card for what I assume was dissent.
Rangers soon added a fourth, from a free-kick on the right hand angle of the box Euan Deveney shot through a disintegrating wall and into the net. Before the period ended Hearts lost the ball on the edge of the box and Aaron Bryson was brought down as he rounded the keeper. The referee showed the keeper a second yellow and subsequent red card before the fouled player converted from the spot.
Rangers were in full control and could have added to their tally in the final period. Kai Kennedy sent Owen McGinty through and he beat the keeper with a superb lob but a defender got back to clear before the ball crossed the line. Ciaran Dickson then progressed to the byline on the left, from his cutback Aaron Bryson was denied at close range by a fine save. In the final minute Kai Kennedy attacked into the left side of the box where he was tripped and stepped up to convert Rangers third penalty.
Full-Time:- Rangers 6 Hearts 0
Rangers Squad:- Brian Kinnear (Gk), Lewis Budinauckas (Gk), Ryan Muir, Euan Deveney, Ciaran Dickson, Kyle McLelland, Ally Monro, Matty Yates, Kai Kennedy, Simon Millar, Owen McGinty, Blair Rossiter, Tom Henderson, Aaron Bryson, Paul Ogilvie, Callum Biggar.
Footnote:- Meanwhile through in the east Rangers 17’s won 6-1. The goals coming from Andy Dallas, Jamie Barjonas, Zak Rudden, Stephen Kelly, Jordan Houston & Matthew Shiels. Rangers U15’s drew 1-1.