After my last match preview ahead of the first Aberdeen clash Rangers have not only gone unbeaten in the intervening four games but won them all - including two matches against the perceived second best team in the country and a fine defensive win on Wednesday against a Hibs outfit that we hadn't beaten for two years. In that preview I compared this period for the club to events in early 2009 and doubted this team could do what that squad did and go on a ten match unbeaten run to challenge Celtic and ultimately win the title. Reverse psychology aside, I still doubt the latter part is possible but we all have to be delighted to the team's response to recent defeats.
Rangers continue their recent winning streak with a hard fought win away to Hibs in Edinburgh.
Being brought up in Edinburgh meant the first places I saw Rangers were at Tynecastle and Easter Road. The predominate result seemed to be 1-1 but on the plus side, I saw Parlane score four goals against Hearts in '74 and Colin Stein score the goal that won us the League Championship the following year. Even the negative (a Hibs win) had a plus, seeing George Best play.
On Sunday I caught up with former Rangers central midfielder Alex Rae, a boyhood Rangers fan and academy player who made his Rangers debut aged 34. He only scored once for the bears but played over 30 times across two seasons at Ibrox between 2004 and 2006 under Alex McLeish.
For the first time this year, Rangers win three games in a row, despite going behind to an early County opener at a freezing Ibrox.
Well what a week it has been! In fact if we take the first game against Aberdeen into account, I will make that, what a last week and a half it has been!
With Rangers being refused permission to speak to Aberdeen boss Derek McInnes, who are the other contenders for the Ibrox top job?
Despite an extremely harsh red card for Ryan Jack, Rangers showed excellent character to secure a second win in five days over Aberdeen.
Although I personally left the RST board the year before their 'We Deserve Better' (WDB) campaign launched in early 2009, I remember appreciating the reasoning behind it. David Murray was becoming less and less of a hands-on chairman and after five years of downsizing, there was an obvious lack of vision in the boardroom. Our work in the transfer market was poor, we weren't winning enough trophies and there appeared to be great difficulty in attracting investment. Add in issues with the media, UEFA and a lack of communication with supporters, the RST clearly had had enough and after six years of trying to be constructive with Murray, they went head to head with him to try and force positive change within the club. And, to an extent, it worked.
It hasn’t been the finest few weeks for the Rangers. The Gers have failed to live up to our expectations and haven’t hit home where it counts. And we’ve seen two outrageous losses against bottom-of-the-league teams, which surely must dishearten the already struggling side.
When well-intentioned, battle weary Rangers supporters at last managed to wrestle away executive control of Rangers after years of plundering spivdom that used Rangers for their own interests, it was a happy day. However the situation, legacy issues and in part, the scorched earth that King and the 'Three Bears' took over was a very difficult challenge.
Watching the TV last night I viewed a Boeing 747 Cargo plane take off from Baghdad Airport with four crew members on board. Unknown to them a terrorist group had gathered with a few French journalists and they were going to let the world know that they now had ground to air missiles. No planes in Iraq were going to be safe any more.
It’s not the most original of post-2012 chants and it’s easily brushed off for the most part when opposition fans sing it but when the away fans directed this chant to us late in Saturday’s Ibrox defeat it stung badly. Just not for the reason the Acas fans may have intended.
Despite almost total dominance over the visitors, awful finishing and even worse defending seen the Lanarkshire men leave with all three points.
The last home game prior to the international break was a welcome home victory versus Partick Thistle. It was a sombre occasion that was marked by welcoming members of the armed forces to mark Armistice Day. The display that could be seen in the Sandy Jardine stand was fantastic, and a poignant tribute to those who made the ultimate sacrifice. As always, the conduct of our support and their continued backing for our armed forces is exceptional.
As the hunt for the lesser spotted Rangers manager enters a third week (or is it fourth?) the speculative froth - we've had too may managers for it be a frenzy anymore, the law of diminishing returns has well and truly set in - is going as flat as the head on a poorly pulled pint in an Edinburgh alehouse.
Recently I spoke to former Rangers midfielder and Scotland international Kevin Thomson. Thomson signed for Rangers in January 2007 for a £2 million fee from Hibernian. Signed by club legend Walter Smith to bolster midfield options, Thomson went on to win back to back SPL titles in 2009 and 2010 as well as being part of the side that reached the Europa League final in 2008.
Rangers cruised past Partick Thistle with a comfortable 3-0 win at a chilly Ibrox on Saturday.
With the dismissal of Pedro Caixinha, Rangers are yet again on the hunt for a new head honcho. This next appointment will be crucial for a club with huge ambitions and an expectant fanbase. The temptation is always to go for a big name, and there are plenty of those available to the Gers but let’s have a look at the options.
The Inuit people have a word for it; shaktolik. It describes the feeling of going towards somewhere for so long it seems you’ll never get there. It describes us perfectly as once again we find ourselves regrouping following another set-back on the long road back to the top.
Savile Rogue, purveyors of the world’s finest football scarves, have again teamed up with Gersnet to give you the chance to win a deluxe cashmere scarf in Rangers colours worth £65.
Despite Hearts taking the lead against the run of play in the first half, the home side failed to kill off the Light Blues and reinstated captain Kenny Miller helped lead the Ibrox men to a somewhat unexpected win at Murrayfield.
MURRAYFIELD -- It was a black February night as Rangers were humbled 1-4 by Hearts at Tynecastle. Mark Warburton and his men trudged off the park, unable deal with the intensity that Hearts showed, both physically and mentally. It was the beginning of the end for Warburton, and Rangers would yield 2nd place not long after and Graeme Murty would be put in charge. Flash forward seven months, and not much has changed.
Rangers fans should be familiar with the feelings of disappointment by now. We've not won three games in a row for god knows how long and just as you think the team is progressing another frustrating defeat opens the floodgates for another surge of criticism and hysteria. It genuinely is the case that in this Rangers era you can change your mind about a particular player or manager over the course of 90mins never mind a whole season.
It's been a somewhat strange season for Rangers so far: inconsistent results with intermittent good form, and all of this stop-start amidst international football disappointment. Essentially just as you think Pedro's squad are starting to find their feet, something happens to stop them in their tracks. From apparent fall-outs with Kenny Miller, to what seem like constant international breaks, and not forgetting the distraction of Old Firm fixtures, it's not a huge surprise we lack momentum at times. Nevertheless, with two good away wins in the bag in our last two matches, this Sunday's Betfred League Cup semi-final against Motherwell is the ideal time for Pedro's men to at last win three games in a row and seal another Cup final at Hampden. However, this will be far from easy.
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I think I can safely say that most Rangers supporters will be saying thank heavens the international weekend has come and gone and we can get back to the nitty gritty of club football again. Well, I may have to retract that as most club supporters are probably unhappy that it comes around in the first place. Personally I prefer the old Wednesday night International games keeping the weekends for club football but with UEFA announcing a new International League system starting next season I would imagine that ship has sailed its last voyage.
Hamilton, the county town of deepest, darkest Lanarkshire. Hamilton, the home of crosses. The main two being the top cross and the bottom cross. The stretch in between, Quarry Street was the location of Saturday morning misery for many a primary schoolboy of my generation. Yer Maw indulged in retail therapy whilst we were content to pity our fellow drookit weans being hauled towards a coughing bus, waiting to take them twenty miles doon'n'roon ra county to Lanark, Biggar, and Shotts. Our reward for endurance was at another confluence of roads, Peacock Cross. Specifically Equi's Cafe, purveyor of pie and peas. Now, if we were in France, this delicacy would be a, 'produit regionaux' ; a white peppered mutton filling encased in pastry, accompanied by peas marinated in black peppered malt vinegar. Hamilton, the home of a culinary triumph.
After a disappointing result at the weekend against Celtic, Ally Bain at Every Other Saturday has gone through the footage and put together the following video analysis of our attacking play.
After a disappointing result at the weekend against Celtic, Ally Bain at Every Other Saturday has gone through the footage and put together the following video analysis of our defensive play.