This weekend’s Youth fixtures saw Rangers taken on Partick Thistle from 13’s through to 17’s age groups. The venues and kick-off times meant I could take in three games. First up was the Under 13’s game at 10:00 AM at Murray Park.
Rangers 12 Partick Thistle 1
On three minutes Darren McInally sent Dire Mebude down the right, he cut inside before firing a shot off the crossbar. The Thistle keeper then hit the goal kick straight to Robbie Ure who strolled into the box and shot past the keeper. Within a minute Robbie Ure and Darren McInally combined to send Dire Mebude down the right, his low cross setup Leyton Dunlop but he shot over.
With nine minutes of the period remaining Mackenzie Strachan’s pass sent Robbie Ure through with the keeper coming from his line to make the save. Thistle capitalised by drawing level, from Alex King’s pass back Gregor McLeod miscued his clearance and the ball went straight to a Thistle attacker who knocked the ball into the net. A minute before the period end the visitor’s keeper’s clearance went straight to Robbie Ure who found the net with a sublime lob.
Ten minutes into the second period Makenzie Kirk sent Leyton Dunlop down the left, his low cross found Jack Scanlan who’s effort was blocked on the line. Within a couple of minutes Leyton Dunlop sent a free-kick from the right to the back post where Robbie Ure knocked the ball against the post before firing the rebound over.
Ten minutes before the period end the keeper was again slack with a clearance and Makenzie Kirk pounced to score Rangers third. Before the period end Darren McInally’s through ball sent Dire Mebude racing clear to round the keeper and knock the ball into the net.
Rangers were rampant int the final period scoring in the opening minute, Makenzie Kirk passed to Jack Scanlan on the right and his low ball across the six yard box presented Leyton Dunlop with a simple finish from the edge of the six yard box. Within a minute a poor clearance from the keeper allowed Dire Mebude to advance into the box and round the keeper for Rangers sixth.
Before the final period change round Makenzie Kirk sent Leyton Dunlop down the left and from his low driven cross a Thistle defender turned the ball past his keeper for an Own Goal. The goals continued after the change of ends, Darren McInally cutting in from the right past two defenders before playing in Dire Mebude ro shoot past the keeper.
Four goals in the last six minutes put a gloss on the scoreline, Darren McInally sending Dire Mebude racing clear to continue into the box and shoot past the keeper. Darren McInally was again the provider with Dire Mebude again the scorer, this time picking out his run into the left side of the box from where he shot past the keeper.
It was an almost identical goal three minutes later, Darren McInally’s pass over the top of Thistle’s defence and Dire Mebude’s finish past the keeper. Roles were reversed for the final goal, Gavin Gallagher worked a short corner with Dire Mebude on the left and from the latter’s cross Darren McInally nodded into the net.
Full-Time:- Rangers 12 Partick Thistle 1
Rangers Squad:- Gregor McLeod (Gk), Jack McConnell (Gk), Jack Harkness, Leyton Dunlop, Mackenzie Strachan, Kelsey Ewan, Alex King, Dire Mebude, Darren McInally, Robbie Ure, Jack Scanlan, Makenzie Kirk, Gavin Gallagher, Harley Ewan.
Partick Thistle 1 Rangers 8
I arrived at Lochinch just in time for the Under 15’s 12:15 kick-off, a game which Rangers were to win comfortably. Rangers created the first chance on eight minutes, Euan Deveney broke forward on the left before passing to Owen McGinty who’s effort was saved at the near post. The opening goal followed four minutes later, Ciaran Dickson attacked the left side of the penalty area before passing inside to Owen McGinty who’s superb turn made space for him to shoot past the keeper.
Rangers doubled their lead just after the half-hour mark, Kai Kennedy’s superb pass inside the right back sent Ciaran Dickson through to finish with a cool dink past the keeper. The third goal came three minutes before the break, from Kai Kennedy’s free-kick from outside the left side of the box saw Matty Yates glance a header past the keeper.
Within a minute Aaron Bryson sent Owen McGinty towards the right hand byline and his low cross was converted by Matty Yates. There was still time for a good passing move to end with Kai Kennedy’s pass sending Euan Deveney clear with the keeper saving his effort on goal.
Half-Time:- Partick Thistle 0 Rangers 4
It only took Rangers six minutes into the second half to add to their tally, when the ball broke to Kai Kennedy thirty yards out he looked up and sent a superb chip over the keeper and into the net. Before the hour mark Rangers added a sixth, Simon Millar got to the byline on the right and cut the ball back for Ciaran Dickson, his shot was blocked but the ball squirmed across goal to Matty Yates at the back post who netted from close range.
Number seven came as the game approached the final quarter-hour, Ciaran Dickson was sent clear and he matched he previous finish with another cool dink past the keeper. Credit to the home side who got on the score sheet a couple of minutes later, the attack came into Rangers penalty area on the left and the finish was high past Lewis Budinauckis.
Scoring was completed five minutes before time, the ball was played out to Darren Waterston on the left, from his cross Simon Millar nipped ahead of a defender to prod the ball past the keeper at the near post.
Full-Time:- Partick Thistle 1 Rangers 8
Rangers Squad:- Lewis Budinauckis (Gk), Kyle McLelland, Euan Deveney, Murray Miller, Ally Munro, Harris O’Connor, Owen McGinty, Kai Kennedy, Aaron Bryson, Ciaran Dickson, Matty Yates, Ryan Muir, Harry Livesey, Simon Millar, Mark Woods, Darren Waterston, Callum Biggar, Tom Henderson.
Partick Thistle 2 Rangers 3
Last up was the Under 17’s encounter with a 2:15 PM kick-off, this was a much closer affair with Rangers just edging it with the odd goal in five.
Rangers were first to threaten when Rhys Breen rose to meet a Billy Gilmour corner from the right but his header was straight at the keeper. Just over five minutes later Thistle took the lead, the attack came down the left, from the cross Nicky Hogarth failed to gather under pressure and with the Rangers keeper looking for a free-kick Dakota King forced the ball over the line.
Rangers drew level less than ten minutes later, Dapo Mebude got to the byline on the left, Thistle defenders were claiming the ball had crossed the line as he crossed, with the referee indicating otherwise Billy Gilmour found the net with a superb controlled volley. A couple of minutes later Jack Thomson showed good skill to side step two defenders before shooting from the edge of the box which was deflected just wide of the keeper’s left hand post.
On thirty-three minutes the home side missed a great chance to take the lead, the ball was worked out to the left and from the low cross the midfielder fired over from close range. On the stroke of half-time Thistle took the lead Dakota King showing good skill on the edge of the box before firing into Nicky Hogarth’s bottom right hand corner.
Half-Time:- Partick Thistle 2 Rangers 1
Thistle came close on a couple of occasions in the opening minutes of the second half. Rhys Breen was dispossessed on the right hand byline when the shot came in from the cutback Nicky Hogarth saved low to his right. Within a minute a free-kick from halfway was cleared to the edge of the box with Nicky Hogarth again getting down to his right to save the shot.
Rangers responded and should have equalised in their next attack, Matthew Shiels won possession and attacked the left side of the penalty area, his low cross found Mati Zata who was denied by a point-blank save. The goal was only delayed a couple of minutes, Cammy Palmer’s pass sending Matthew Shiels racing clear to prod the ball past the keeper.
As the final quarter-hour approached Carlo Pignatiello passed to Billy Gilmour who moved it on to Zack Butterworth on the right hand angle of the box but he shot straight at the keeper. With eleven minute remaining Rangers edged in front, Cammy Palmer passed to Jordan Houston on the right, Carlo Pignatiello met the cross at the near post but the ball deflected off a defender a looped towards the back post where Zack Butterworth knocked the ball into the net.
The final chance came with three minutes remaining Matthew Shiels sent the ball over the top of the Thistle defence and Mati Zata clear, his shot beat the keeper but cannoned back off the crossbar.
Full-Time:- Partick Thistle 2 Rangers 3
Rangers:- Nicky Hogarth; Jordan Houston, Jason Krones (Danny Finlayson HT), Rhys Breen, Scott Gray; Jack Thomson (Carlo Pignatiello HT); Billy Gilmour, Cammy Palmer; Mati Zata, Dapo Mebude (Zack Butterworth HT), Matthew Shiels.