Archive for July, 2017

Youths Share Four Goals With Ards

July 19, 2017

Ards 2 Rangers 2

Rangers Development squad took on Danske Bank Premier League side Ards  in the first of their two games in Northern Ireland at the Bangor Fuels Arena last night. In an entertaining game a share of the spoils was probably a fair result.

The home side took the lead after only four minutes, their seemed little danger when Kyle Cherry was in possession a distance from goal until he unleashed a shot from fully thirty yards that rebounded of the cross-bar straight to Gary Liggett who netted from close range. A similar period had elapsed when Rangers came close to drawing level, the move started with Cammy Palmer who passed to Andy Dallas and his through ball sent Matthew Shiels breaking into the left side of the penalty area but he shot across the face of goal and wide of the far post.

Just after the half-hour mark Myles Beerman took a throw on the left to Ryan Hardie who’s flick gave possession to Matthew Shiels and his effort from around twenty-five yards was only just wide of Aaron Hogg’s right hand post. Five minutes before the break Craig McMillen’s shot from the left hand angle of the box was blocked by Danny Finalyson and follow-up from the rebound forced Kieran Wright to make a decent save at his near post. 

On the stroke of half-time Ards came close when a one-two opened up the Rangers defence on the right side of the box but when the ball flashed across goal there were no takers to convert from close range.

Half-Time:- Ards 1 Rangers 0

Rangers had a let off when the second half was barely two minutes old, Craig McMillen swung in a corner from the right and Gary Ligget’s header looked netbound until Myles Beerman popped up to head from the line. Rangers capitalised by going straight up the other end to draw level, Andy Dallas combined with Matthew Shiels to on the left side of the box and when the ball was rolled across to Ryan Hardie he made no mistake.

Within five minutes the Ibrox youngsters grabbed the lead, a quick break from defence ended with Andy Dallas breaking forward before finding the net from the edge of the box. A few minutes later Jamie Barjonas passed to Ryan Hardie on the right hand angle of the box and his curled shot was only just wide of the far post.

Before the hour mark was reached the home side equalised, the move started of the left and when the ball went beyond the far post Craig McMillen shot through a crowded box and into the net. Craig McMillen came close soon after when he cut in from the right and forced Aidan McAdams to save diving to his left.

The Rangers keeper excelled five minutes later producing a stunning save to turn the ball over from Guillaume Keke’s close range header following a free-kick delivered from the left. Neither side could add to their tally and the game ended on what was probably a fair result.

Ful-Time:- Ards 2 Rangers 2

Rangers:- Kieran Wright; Danny Finlayson, Aidan Wilson, Lewis Mayo, Myles Beerman; Cammy Palmer, Jamie Barjonas; Andy Dallas, Matthew Shiels, Serge Atakayi ; Ryan Hardie.

Subs All Used:- Aidan McAdams (Gk), Grant Nelson, Jack Blackford, Mati Zata, Michael Hewitt, Scott Gray.


Rangers 3 Morton 1

Rangers Under 16’s warmed up for next week’s SuperCup NI (Formerly Milk Cup) with a friendly against a slightly older Morton side at Auchenhowie tonight. 

Rangers had the majority of possession but there was almost a half-hour on the clock before any keeper was troubled and it was a powerful twenty-five yarder from the Trialist No.9 but straight at the keeper. Five minutes later Rangers took the lead, Darren Watterson sent the ball down the left where the Trialist No.9 turned a defender to break in the penalty area before squaring for Matty Yates slot past the keeper.

Half-Time:- Rangers 1 Morton 0

An early free-kick from wide left was the source of Morton’s equaliser early in the second half, delivered to the near post the attacker got there ahead of Jay Hogarth to head into the net. The visitor’s came close to taking the lead a few minutes later the cross  into the box had the Rangers defence in trouble and only a headed goal line clearance from Kyle McClelland kept them level.

Rangers were back in front just after the hour, a superb Kai Kennedy pass picking out Ciaran Dickson’s run into the right side of the box and he controlled the ball before shooting past the keeper. Midway through the half Morton broke into the left side of the box and it took a fine block from Jay Hogarth to prevent a second equaliser.

 The Rangers keeper was called into action again, this time the attack came in from the right and when the shot came in Jay Hogarth did well to divert the ball over. Rangers scored a third with ten minutes remaining, another run into the box from Ciaran Dickson with the keeper diving to his left to parry the shot but only as far as Tom Henderson who slammed the ball into the net.

The final chances came for Morton, the first a volley following a free kick delivered into the box that Jay Hogarth saved. Then in the final minute a cross from the left sailed over the Rangers keeper’s head but bounced of the back post.

Full-Time:- Rangers 3 Morton 1

Rangers:- Lewis Budinauckas; Ryan Muir, Kyle McLelland, Harris O’Connor, Euan Deveney; Mark Miller; Kai Kennedy; Ciaran Dickson; Matty Yates, Trialist No.9, Darren Watterson.

Subs All Used:- Jay Hogarth (Gk), Ally Monro, Aaron Bryosn, Tom Henderson, Robbie Fraser, Callum Biggar.

Youth Take On County Down Select

July 15, 2017

Rangers Under 16’s and 17’s took on County Down’s Under 16’s and Under 18’s Super Cup NI squads in friendlies at Auchenhowie this afternoon. With the games kicking off at the same time my normal rule is I take in the older age group.

Rangers 1 County Down 1

Rangers Under 17’s supplemented by Under 19 Jason Krones and Under 18 Izzak Ahmed took on County Down’s under 18 side, with the game being played over three thirty minute periods. The young Rangers side had the bulk of possession but clear chances were at a premium and a draw was probably a fair result.

Rangers took the lead on ten minutes, Kieran McKechnie passed to Josh McPake wide on the left and he cut inside past a defender before shooing past Scott Pengelly  from the edge of the box. Eight minutes later there seemed little danger when Kieran McKechnie took possession twenty-five yards from goal until he unleashed a shot that had the keeper beaten but bounced off the crossbar on the way over.

At the other end a couple of minutes later  a corner from the left found its way to Adam McAleenan at the back post where he was denied when Brian Kinnear blocked with his legs. With seven minutes of the period remaining the visitors equalised, a ball over the top of the Rangers defence sent Dean Truesdale through to slot the ball past Brian Kinnear.

Rangers had a chance in the opening minute of the second period when Zac Butterworth passed inside to Josh McPake  from the right, he went past a defender before forcing a save from Scott Pengally. The period was mainly noted for a series of substitutions by both sides until the twentieth minute when Josh McPake laid the ball back to Nathan Patterson on the right hand angle of the box and his effort had Matthew Anderson stretching to tip over.

It was around the midpoint of the final period when Rangers came close on a couple of occasions within a minute. John Balde lost his marker to meet Josh McPake’s corner from the left but could only direct his header wide of the back post. In Rangers next attack Nathan Patterson picked out John Balde’s run into the box but Matthew Anderson did enough to divert the ball wide of his left hand post.

The final chance of the match came to the lads from Ulster, Ruairi O’Hare rose to meet Jack Henderson’s free-kick from the left but headed straight at Nicky Hogarth.

Full – Time:- Rangers 1 County Down 1

Rangers:- Brian Kinnear (Nicky Hogarth 43 mins); Nathan Patterson, Jason Krones, Jay Mack, Jamie Walker; Jordan Critchley (Gregor Woods 43 mins); Issak Ahmed (Ross Young 38 mins), Kieran McKechnie (John Balde 43 mins); Zac Butterworth, Dapo Mebude (Niyah Joseph 43 mins), Josh McPake.

County Down Squad:- Scott Pengelly (Gk), Matthew Anderson (Gk), Mal Smith, Jamie Glover, Adam McAleenan, James McCarthy. Jack Henderson, Tom Mathieson, Adam Carroll, Dean Truesdale, Ruairi O’Hare, Ross Weatherup, Joe Shevlin, Dan Smith, Matthew Lee, Jack Conlon, Cai Gemmell.

Footnote:- On the adjacent pitch Rangers Under 16’s recorded a 2-0 win over their County Down counterparts with the goals coming from Matty Yates and Trialist No.9.

Development Squad Hit Eight

July 15, 2017

Gala Fairydean Rovers 1 Rangers 8

Rangers Development Squad travelled down to the borders on Friday night for a pre-season friendly against Gala Fairydean Rovers. There has been recent close links between the clubs with Kieran Wright, Lewis White and Jason Krones spending some time on loan at Netherdale last season.

Rangers had a great chance to take the lead on thirteen minutes, from Ryan Hardie’s through ball Cammy Palmer was brought down as he rounded keeper Mark Walters. Ryan Hardie stepped up to take the spot-kick but the keeper redeemed himself diving to his right to parry and was quickly on his feet to block the rebound before the ball was cleared for a corner. From Jordan Thompson’s corner on the right Mark Walters failed to gather and when the ball dropped Matthew Shiels volleyed into the net.

Rangers second goal came on twenty minutes, Serge Atakatyi went past Scott Main to hit the right hand byline and his low cross was converted at close range by Ryan Hardie. The home side came close at the midpoint of the half when Kieran Ainslie rose to meet Danny Pattenden’s corner from the right but the ball bounced of the face of the crossbar.

Within a couple of minutes Aidan Wilson played a ball over the Gala defence to send Ryan Hardie clear but Mark Walters was quick from his line to make the block. Just before the half-hour mark Myles Beerman and Cammy Palmer combined on the left to play the ball to Matthew Shiels inside the box, a great turn took him clear of a defender and his shot beat Mark Walters but Scott Main got back to clear from the goal line.

Gala threatened ten minutes before the break when Marc Berry cut in from the left hand angle of the box to force Kieran Wright into a save. Within minutes Rangers grabbed a third, Jordan Thompson’s cross from the left was headed back across goal by Lewis Mayo and Matthew Shiels headed past the keeper. Five minutes before the break Danny Pattenden tried to catch out Kieran Wright with a quickly taken twenty-five yard free-kick that the Rangers keeper saved comfortably.

Half-Time:- Gala Fairydean Rovers 0 Rangers 3

There was only three minutes of the second half on the clock when Rangers scored a fourth, from Grant Nelson’s through ball Matthew Shiels was denied by Mark Walters when he tried to prod the ball past the keeper, he was also up to block Andy Dallas’s effort from the rebound but was helpless as Ryan Hardie converted the third attempt. The home side immediately responded by grabbing a goal back, Stuart Noble was brought down as he took on Lewis Mayo on the right side of the box and Darren Smith stepped up to convert from the spot.

Just after the hour mark a superb Jamie Barjonas pass sent Matthew Shiels through the inside left channel and he continued into the box to calmly slot the ball past Mark Walters to complete his hat-trick. Barely three minutes later when Jamie Barjonas’s corner from the left was head to the edge of the box Grant Nelson’s stunning volley was touched on to the underside of the bar by Mark Walters.

As the midpoint of the half approached Andy Dallas attacked on the right with the ball flashing across the face of goal andMat Zata just failing to reach it. Within in a minute Mati Zata played the ball into the box from the left and Ryan Hardie’s shot was deflected on to Mark Walters’s left hand post.

With fifteen minutes remaining Rangers scored a six, the move was started by Michael Hewitt on the right when he played the ball forward to Grant Nelson who fed Andy Dallas inside the box to shoot past Mark Walters. Number seven soon followed with Matthew Shiels providing the pass for Andy Dallas to round Mark Walters and roll the ball into the net.

The home side never gave up and when the ball from the left found Stuart Noble at the back post he went past Scott Gray before being denied by Aidan McAdams who blocked with his legs. Rangers were soon back on attack with Scott Gray and Izzak Ahmed combing on the left to feed Ryan Hardie who’s shot was deflected on to Mark Walter’s right hand post. The scoring was completed with five minutes remaining, Andy Dallas providing the pass for Ryan Hardie to become the second Rangers player to score a hat-trick with a cool lob over the advancing Mark Walters.

Full-Time:- Gala Fairydean Rovers 1 Rangers 8

Gala Fairydean Rovers:- Mark Walters; Lee Stephen, Kieran Ainslie (Robert Noble 71 mins)  George Windram (Lewis Swaney 55 mins), Scott Main; David Brown ((Craig Heugh 68 mins) Callum Riddell 86 mins), David Bonnar, Danny Pattenden (Gavin Brown 50 mins), Marc Berry; Darren Smith; Stuart Noble.

Not Used:- Sean Paliczka, Ross Aitchison.

Rangers:- Kieran Wright (Aidan McAdams HT); Danny Finlayson, Aidan Wilson (Michael Hewitt 58 mins), Lewis Mayo, Myles Beerman (Scott Gray 58 mins); Cammy Palmer (Grant Nelson HT); Jamie Barjonas (Izzak Ahmed 67 mins), Jordan Thompson (Mati Zata 55 mins); Serge Atakayi (Andy Dallas HT), Ryan Hardie, Matthew Shiels.


Opening Games For Youths

July 8, 2017

With the continuation of the blog still being considered, one or two issues suggest it may be time to retire my pen and paper and I’m not sure the interest is there. Tuesday’s disaster coupled with today’s 20’s performance gave me little motivation to post tonight but as I am doing nothing else here it is.

The day started with a three team Under 17 tournament involving Airdrie and Partick Thistle. The games were played over two twenty-five minute halfs.

Rangers 3 Airdrie 1

Only a brilliant point-blank save prevented Rangers taking the lead in the opening minute, the keeper diving to his right to turn Niyah Joseph’s effort from deep inside the right side of the penalty area wide of the post. The opening goal came twelve minutes later, Niyah Joseph on the right passed to Matty Yates on the edge of the box and he laid the ball back to Kieran McKechnie who’s shot was blocked but he reacted to fire the rebound past the keeper.

Airdrie replied with a cross to the back post from the right and from the shot Brian Kinnear parried with Harris O’Connor on hand to clear in front of goal. Just on the half time whistle a cross field pass from right to left setup another chance for Airdrie that Brian Kinnear saved at his near post.

Five minutes after the break Brian Kinnear’s throw out was intercepted wide on the left but he redeemed himself by blocking the shot when the ball was played into the box. Within minutes Zac Butterworth intercepted a throw out from the Airdrie keeper and broke down the right, he passed inside to the Trialist No.9 who laid the ball back to Kieran McKechnie who beat the keeper from the edge of the box.

Within five minutes Airdrie attacked down the right and the cross come shot sailed over the head of Lewis Budinauckas and into the net. Two minutes later it took and brilliant save from Lewis Budinauckas to keeper Rangers lead intact, diving high to his left to turn a shot from inside the right side of the penalty area over.

With ten minutes remaining a brilliant Gregor Woods strike secured the win, side stepping a defender twenty-five yards from goal he fired high past the keeper into the top right hand corner.

Full-Time:- Rangers 3 Airdrie 1

Rangers:- Brian Kinnear; Callum Biggar, Harris O’Connor, Jay Mack, Darren Watterston; Gregor Woods, Ross Young; Kieran McKechnie; Niyah Joseph, Trialist No.9, Matty Yates.

Subs Used:- Lewis Budinauckas (Gk), Zac Butterworth, Kyle McLelland, Aaron Bryson.

Rangers 1 Partick Thistle 1

Again Rangers came close in the opening minute, Jordan Critchley’s pass sent Dapo Mebude through the inside left channel with the keeper standing up to make the save from the shot. Thistle replied from a free-kick on the edge of the box that Nicky Hogarth got down to his left to make a comfortable save.

Nathan Patterson and Trialist No.9 combined on the right to set up up Josh McPake deep inside the right side of the penalty area that the keeper blocked at his near post. Thistle took the lead four minutes before the break, the ball was passed in from the right and when the shot came in it seemed to deceive Nicky Hogarth who stood rooted and the ball foun the left low to his right.

Rangers came close to an equaliser when Kai Kennedy fed Dapo Mebude who went past two defenders into the penalty area but again the keeper made a fine block. Rangers dominated the second twenty-five minutes but clear chances were few. Kai Kennedy took on the defence on the right his ball inside went through to Jay Mack at the back post with the keeper blocking his close range effort.

Just before the final whistle Dapo Mebude’s pass sent Josh McPake through and he continued into the box to round the keeper and roll the ball into the net.

Full-Time:- Rangers 1 Partick Thistle 1

Rangers:- Nicky Hogarth; Nathan Patterson, Kyle McLelland, Harris O’Connor, Jamie Walker; Jordan Critchley, Ciaran Dickson; Kai Kennedy; Josh McPake, Trialist No.9, Dapo Mebude.

Subs Used:- Lewis Budinauckas (Gk), John Balde, Jay Mack, Niyah Joseph.

Note:- The trialists involved were two different players. In between these two games Partick Thistle beat Airdrie 5-0 in a one sided encounter.


Rangers 1 Tynecastle FC 2

The afternoon saw a disappointing result and performance against a side the Under 20’s have put six past in the past two seasons. Last season it was doubles from Ryan Hardie and Zak Rudden, and one from Andy Dallas and a trialist. Two years ago the goals came from Scott Roberts (2), Ross Lyon, Danny Stoney, Darren Ramsay and Josh Jeffries.

Rangers came close when Harry Forrester charged down a clearance from the keeper Ross McMullan with the ball going narrowly over the crossbar. A couple of minutes later Aidan Wilson’s cross from the right found Matthew Shiels who’s shot cracked off the near post.

Rangers next attack saw Harry Forrester attack the left side of the box and go past two defenders but got too close to the Ross McMullan and the keeper who made the block. In their first attack the visitors passed up agreat chance, Antonio Brkic racing clear but he dragged his shot wide of Aidan McAdams right hand post. Michael O’Halloran went off injured on nineteen minutes to be replaced by Andy Dallas.

Just after the midpoint of the half the visitor’s took the lead, from a corner from the right Aidan McAdams could only punch the ball up in the air and Ryan Malcolm volleyed into the net. Jamie Barjonas then sent a ball over the Tynecastle defence with Andy Dallas converging with keeper Ross McMullan the ball broke towards the right hand byline where it was collected by Matthew Shiels but Ross McMullan got back to save his shot from a tight angle.

Just after the half-hour Zak Rudden attacked down the left and from his pass inside Andy Dallas forced a save from Ross McMullan low to his left. Rangers final chance off the half came from an Andy Dallas cross from the right to the back post where Matthew Shiels downward header was somehow scooped over by Ross McMullan.

Half-Time:- Rangers 0 Tynecastle FC 1

Rangers first chance after the break came when Jason Krones broke forward from defence and played through Andy Dallas who was denied when Ross McMullan came from his line to block. Rangers drew level eight minutes after the break, Grant Nelson and Andy Dallas combined with Trialist No.10 who’s low cross was converted at close range by Andy Dallas. 

Rangers fell behind on sixty-four minutes, the attack started down the left and the ball was played across the box to substitute Euan Greig who shot across Kieran Wright and into the net. With a quarter-hour remaining Zak Rudden broke through on the right of the penalty area with the sub keeper making the block and a defender clearing for a corner. 

Rangers missed a great chance on eighty-one minutes, Michael Hewitt’s cross from the right to pick out the unmarked Mati Zata with the goal gaping he headed over. The final chance came at the other end, a pass in from the right and shot forced Kieran Wright tp save low to his right.

Full-Time:- Rangers 1 Tynecastle FC 2

Rangers 1st Half:- Aidan McAdams; Jordan Houston, Aidan Wilson, Lewis Mayo, Myles Beerman; Jamie Barjonas, Harry Forrester; Trialist No.10; Michal O’Halloran (Andy Dallas 19 mins); Zak Rudden, Matthew Shiels.

Rangers 2nd Half:- Kieran Wright; Michael Hewitt, Danny Finlayson, Jason Krones, Trialist No.16; Grant Nelson; Mati Zata, Izzak Ahmed; Andy Dallas (Matthew Shiels 62 mins), Trialist No.10 (Zak Rudden 62 mins), Scott Gray.

Tynecastle FC:- Ross McMullan; Lewis Grant, Ryan Ferguson, Niall Kelly, Dean Crabbe, Robbie McIntyre; Antonio Brkic, Ryan Mayer, Kern Hutchinson, ????? Clarke; Ryan Malcolm.