Rangers 1 Falkirk 2
A Falkirk side with five overage players proved too strong for a young Rangers side that was made up of under 19 players. If Rangers goal had come a bit earlier the Ibrox youngsters may have been able to push for a share of the points.
For the first time the Development side lined up in 3-5-2 formation recently deployed at first team level. Early teething problems with the formation almost cost a goal on eight minutes, Kyle Bradley’s pass across the back line went straight to Kevin O’Hara who raced clear into the box but was denied by a fine Robbie McCrorie save to turn the ball wide of his left hand post. Five minutes later Falkirk took the lead, Cameron Blues broke forward before shooting from around twenty-five yards to beat Robbie McCrorie low to his right.
Just after the half-hour mark Scott Shepherd played the ball into the box from the right, it was cleared as far as Liam Henderson who’s shot from the edge of the box was held by Robbie McCrorie. Rangers then passed up two great opportunities to draw level in the final four minutes of the half. From Josh Jeffries clearance Zak Rudden escaped from a defender and broke into the left side of the penalty area, Robbie Thomson stood tall as he advanced from his line to make the block. On the stroke of half-time Zak Rudden cushioned a header to Billy Gilmour who passed to Jordan Houston wide on the right, his low cross found Josh Jeffries on the edge of the six yard box but he failed to connect properly and Kyle Johnson knocked the ball behind for a corner.
Half-Time:- Rangers 0 Falkirk 1
Ten minutes after the break Josh Jeffries picked up the ball just outside the right side of the penalty area, he curled a shoot towards the far top corner that saw Robbie Thomson leap to turn the ball over. Falkirk replied with an attack on the right and from Mark Finlayson’s low cross Mark O’Hara looked certain to score at the back post but he knocked the ball wide.
Midway through the half Billy Gilmour passed the ball forward to Jamie Barjonas who’s effort from around twenty-five yards was just too high. Within a couple of minutes Max Ashmore won the ball on the edge of the box and his shot had Robbie Thomson diving to his left to turn the ball wide. Zak Rudden and Josh Jeffries worked a short corner that allowed the latter to break into the right side of the box to force a save from Robbie Thomson at the near post.
As the game entered the final quarter-hour Falkirk doubled their lead direct from a free-kick just left of centre, Lewis Kidd curling a shot over the wall and into Robbie McCrorie’s top right hand corner. Rangers responded when Max Ashmore played the ball forward to Andy Dallas who cut into the box before firing narrowly over.
With four minutes remaining Jamie Barjonas played the ball forward to Billy Gilmour who’s shot from the edge of the box went narrowly over. As the clocked ticked to the ninety minute mark Jamie Barjonas went past two defenders as he attacked the centre of the box, his through ball released Andy Dallas who shot past Robbie Thomson.
Full-Time:- Rangers 1 Falkirk 2
Rangers:- Robbie McCrorie; Ross McCrorie, Kyle Bradley, Aidan Wilson; Jordan Houston (Ross Lyon 78 mins), Josh Jeffries (Andy Dallas 76 mins), Max Ashmore (Jamie Barjonas 78 mins), Billy Gilmour, Myles Beerman; Zak Rudden, Liam Burt.
Not Used:- Kieran Wright (Gk), Serge Atakayi, Jordan Gibson, Amin Abaradan.
Falkirk:- Robbie Thomson; Mark Finlayson, Cameron Eadie, Kyle Johnson, Luke Leahy; Lewis Kidd, Cameron Blues, Liam Henderson (Connor Langton 62 mins); Scott Shepherd, Kevin O’Hara, Reis Peggie.
Not Used:- Lewis McMinn (Gk), Jonny Mitchell, Mark Stowe.