It's been a strange summer so far. Off the pitch, the weather has been as poor as I can remember during July and August. On the pitch, after an appalling early Europa League knock-out, some positive pre-season friendly results meant when our domestic campaign got under-way two weeks ago, fans were confident we could improve substantially on last years disappointing 3rd place.
In ‘Raptor’ his excellent book on the UK’s birds of prey, James Macdonald Lockhart describes his attempts to see a Honey Buzzard in the wild as cryptozoology. He knows it exists, others have seen it, yet it remains elusive to him. He spends days in the Forest Of Dean, rising early, using hides and spending hours in what he believes are the perfect positions to observe this magnificent, if elusive, animal. Yet it remains tantalisingly out of reach. His frustration and disappointment are clear, he wants proof this bird exists in Britain and to see, and enjoy, its drama and beauty for himself. He’s willing to invest significant time and effort into this too. Cryptozoology is, in essence, about studying and finding things that just might not be there.
Ahead of a fine performance by Rangers at Ibrox last night, I noted with a smile my TV licence being renewed automatically by the BBC. It's been a while since I last checked the cost but at around £12 a month I think it still represents decent value. As much as Sky is perhaps my main source of TV nowadays (along with Netflix and Amazon Prime), I still enjoy a range of BBC productions - both on radio and TV, as well as digitally via the superb iPlayer. If you compare the cost to other subscription based providers, then I think the fee is still worth paying. Unfortunately, as a Rangers supporter, the value is becoming more and more difficult to justify.
Laws. The law is an ass. Murphy's law. Unlawful laws. Denis Law. Er...Ashley Cole slaw. If you like football and the law, you're in luck, especially if you live in the chilly, damp western extremity of Europe. Here’s a take on laws, from Thomas More, sometime advisor to King Henry VIII of England, and, no doubt, for some a rather unlikely figure to appear on a Rangers site.
On May 6th 1978, the bright sun glinted off silver as our Captain stepped up to receive the Scottish Cup. Rangers had just achieved a 2-1 victory over Aberdeen. The second Treble in three seasons had been secured and skipper, John Greig was the first player since Davie Meiklejohn 50 years before, to be offered a testimonial. Also at Hampden several weeks previously, Ham and Egg picked up the League Cup, after 2-1 extra-time defeat of ra Sellik. The filling in the cup sandwich was the League Flag, secured after a 0-1 win at Tannadice, and celebrated at Ibrox against Motherwell (2-0) the week before the national cup final. Derek Johnstone was Scotland's Player of the Year: he and partner, Gordon Smith had notched 65 goals between them in all games. The national team had qualified for its second successive World Cup finals in Argentina, and were installed as fourth favourites for the trophy. Follow following Rangers demanded a pair of Ray Bans.
We keep saying we need width: If we can just get another left-sided winger to complete our 4-4-2 then we'd be doing well. But to say we must have width from midfield is not absolutely necessary. History has shown us that asymmetric formations can and do work. Moreover, we don't even need to rigidly stick to one formation. What we need is balance.
Various journalists and media platforms have been falling over themselves this week to declare the EBTs as “unlawful” but failing to justify this in any shape or form.
The cries of outrage that have greeted the SPFL announcement regarding legal powers over historical EBTs can’t have come as a surprise to anyone who has had even a passing interest in Scottish football in recent times.
On the 24th June 2012 Steven Naismith and Steven Whittaker issued a joint statement via their Simon Catto of HBJ Gateley
Finally, after lumbering on for over seven years, the so-called Big Tax Case has reached its conclusion. So long has it taken that it now has no financial burden to the club moving forward, despite clearly bruising the legacy of some fantastic achievements in the previous decade.
Before last night's match Pedro Caixinha called defeat 'unthinkable'. Before our first match preview of the season we said 'failure is not an option' and after the draw was made we said we must go through with 'no excuses'. Well, the unthinkable has happened and there is no excuse.
Tonight, Rangers travel to the Duchy of Luxembourg for the return game against Progres Niederkorn to defend a slim 1-0 lead.
It's only late June and less than six weeks since our last match but Rangers' 2017/18 campaign begins in earnest on Thursday night at Ibrox. Indeed, for many fans, their first taste of Europe this summer won't be their typical beach holidays to Spain or Greece but to a small land-locked Duchy on the continent: Luxembourg.
As a new season begins in earnest next week, we're looking for some feedback on our forum and main site.
After a rather disappointing 'transitional' season upon our return to the SPFL Premiership, it was obvious to all that substantial changes had to be made inside the dressing room at Rangers. First of all, the management team which secured our promotion were removed given their less than flexible approach to, not only our inconsistent form, but in terms of improving the quality of the playing squad. Pedro Caixinha was then brought in: himself hardly a household name but apparently impressing the board with his pragmatism and modern outlook.
Despite justified misgivings around the merger of existing Rangers supporters groups it was blatantly obvious to the vast majority of fans that Club1872 had undoubted potential and could become a great asset for our support. Pooling the resources and memberships of Rangers First, the Rangers Supporters Trust and others should certainly have been a springboard to greater success. Unfortunately however even Stevie Wonder can see that Club1872 hasn’t lived up to its billing, to be rather blunt.
Succulent lamb: a phrase which, as bizarre as it seems, alludes to the great sway Rangers Football Club, or perhaps more accurately Sir David Murray, once held over the Scottish media.
The term refers to the food served by the Rangers chairman in meetings with friendly journalists who would report favourably in return for exclusives and inside information in return.
Author David Gordon looks back on the hugely impressive career of the late, great Scot Symon whose cricketing and footballing pursuits earned him recognition, but perhaps he deserved more...
Sitting down to write the preview this week was extremely difficult. Funnily enough the first thing that entered my head was a well known comedy sketch in Fawlty Towers. I am sure nearly everyone will remember the hotel getting German guests and Basil Fawlty (John Cleese) strutting about shouting “Don't mention the war”. That is the feeling I have at this time: “Don't mention the war”.
Saturday's Old Firm game at Ibrox will be the sixth time the teams have met this season with only one draw amongst four defeats in the five games so far for Rangers. Despite the obvious gulf between the two sides on and off the pitch, I don't think any Rangers fan finds that record acceptable and it was good to hear Pedro Caixinha felt ashamed after the 2-0 reverse from last weekend's Scottish Cup semi-final. He's not the only one...
If there is one position in the Rangers side that has been in desperate need of an upgrade over the last few transfer windows, it is Defensive-midfield (DM). While the role has changed over the years, in most sides there is that one player tasked with screening the back-four. As fans we've often thought who of our current players can play the role, even going so far as to say Kiernan should be given a shot! But, perhaps the answer has been staring us in the face all along: Jason Holt.
Writing match previews isn't always easy. In Scotland we often play teams more than four times a season so it can be tricky to put a different slant on a subject that has already been covered to death in the preceding six months or so. By naming his first XI the day before our second away fixture to Kilmarnock (as opposed to the customary hour before the game) Pedro Caixinha has just made this task even harder. As such, please bear with me...
The first of April is a day to make practical jokes on people. It is called April Fools day. On Saturday the first of April Rangers entertain Motherwell at Ibrox. That seems like a joke in itself as it seems like only yesterday we were listening to “In Dulci jubilo” and “Frosty the snowman”. One thing that will be no joke is that Ibrox will have a full house. What a fantastic support we have when it comes to supporting our club; we are certainly no fools. Some other clubs treat their supporters like fools by counting empty seats to inflate their crowd numbers. They claim a full house while half the seats are empty. That is not the Rangers support. At Ibrox a full house is full to the brim of full seats. As I live abroad I cannot take any plaudits for that but what pride I take in even calling myself a Rangers supporter.
IBROX -- Pedro Caixinha cut an imposing figure as he emerged in black from the tunnel into the glare of the afternoon sun. Ibrox responded with a customary roar, but a quick raised hand was all before he took up position on the touchline; arms folded, legs apart, he gazed over his new players like a general examining his troops.
Pedro Caixinha was unveiled as our new manager and spent his first few hours taking in the match and performance at the piggery. Hardly the glittering welcome we would have liked but then again he does have much history and experience dealing with and slaying Beasts! He would however witness a side who looked hungry and intent on showing their desire to impress the new manager. A desire that has been sadly lacking for much of the season.
On March 15th and 16th, the final stage of the court action commonly known as the 'big tax case' involving the Murray Group and Rangers Oldco will be heard at the Supreme Court. And rather than rely on inaccurate tweets from anti-Rangers bloggers, you can watch the proceedings live on the Court's own website.
After three defeats against Celtic this season already (and three games still to go in the repetitive structure of Scottish football), it's fair to say there's not many Rangers supporters looking forward to Sunday's derby.
Our friends at Art of Football create hand crafted designs try to emulate the beauty of those split second moments, the moments you never forget, as they look to capture the energy, passion and euphoria that erupts from that one magical kick of a football. They only produce a limited number of each design, so your T-shirts and prints, like any good piece of art, are exclusive and completely original.
I write this article three weeks since Mark Warburton, Davie Weir and Frank McParland left our club. A lot has been written already in the media but also on social media and fan boards. What I would like to do is take a different look at the 'Warburton era' and what positives our club can take from this given we are supposed to be days (or even hours) away from appointing his successor.
The Extraordinary General Meeting of 2015 was undoubtedly a turning point in Rangers history as Dave King, Douglas Park & Co wrestled control from the parasitic regime that had brought our club to its knees and turned our institution into no more than a glorified outlet for Sports Direct.