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Rangers vs Linfield (Friendly) 10/04/2013 KO 19:15 BST

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Tonight Rangers take on Linfield at Ibrox. From the official Rangers site:

 

Linfield: Pay At The Gate

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RANGERS are opening up the Copland Rear Stand for Pay at the Gate at the special friendly clash with Linfield.

Fans from both sides are keen to see Linfield’s first ever visit to Ibrox after over 100 years of friendship.

Tickets will remain on sale from the usual outlets, but you will be able to come along on the night and catch all of the action by paying cash at the gate.

The entry prices are £15 for adults, £10 for concessions and £5 for kids.

Linfield manager David Jeffrey can’t wait to lead his side out at Ibrox for the first time in the club’s long and illustrious history.

He said: “We have had the privilege and honour of hosting Rangers at Windsor Park on several occasions and they have always been great and memorable occasions.

“To be invited by Rangers to play at Ibrox is most significant and it was an invitation we were delighted and honoured to accept.â€

Ally McCoist also knows it is a special game for all concerned. He said: “We are delighted to welcome the management, the staff, the players and the supporters of Linfield because they are a club we have had a fantastic history with going back a long number of years.

“Linfield were the first club that offered a hand of friendship and offered help when we slipped into administration. We as a club will never forget that.â€

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No streams that I know of unfortunately, but here (belatedly) is the team news:

 

Three Changes For Gers

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ALLY MCCOIST has made three changes to his starting eleven for tonight’s friendly with Linfield with Andy Mitchell, Chris Hegarty and Barrie McKay in the line-up.

The manager has selected a strong team for the kick-off against David Jeffrey’s men as Northern Ireland’s most successful club make their first visit to Ibrox Stadium in their 127-year history.

With Neil Alexander in goals former Dungannon Swifts stopper Hegarty will be utilised at right back with Lee Wallace on the left and Seb Faure and Emilson Cribari in the heart of defence.

Mitchell, from Glengormley in County Antrim and pictured above, will start on the right side of midfield with McKay on the opposite wing and Kyle Hutton and Ian Black in the engine room.

This will leave Hampden hero David Templeton to support skipper Lee McCulloch in attack.

Fans attending the game tonight can expect several changes throughout the 90 minutes with no fewer than 10 players named on a young bench.

Anestis Argyriou is the most experienced at 25 and he is joined by Charlie Telfer, Andy Murdoch, Luca Gasparotto, Kal Naismith, Fraser Aird, keeper Alan Smith, Robbie Crawford, Danny Stoney and Ryan Sinnamon.

Linfield will be looking to record just their second win against the Light Blues having come up them on 14 previous occasions and they will no doubt receive a warm welcome when taking to the pitch this evening.

RANGERS: Alexander; Hegarty, Cribari, Faure, Wallace; Mitchell, Black, Hutton, McKay; Templeton, McCulloch

SUBS: Smith, Stoney, Telfer, Murdoch, Gasparotto, Naismith, Aird, Crawford, Sinnamon, Argyriou

LINFIELD: Ross Glendinning, Douglas, Thompson, Carvill, Burns, Reece Glendinning, Hanley, Tipton, Ervin, Mulgrew, McCaul

SUBS: Blayney, Armstrong, Grant, Murphy, Henderson, Browne, McAllister, Black, Quinn, Clarke

REF: John Beattie

 

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Match Report:

 

Rangers 2-0 Linfield

 

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CHRIS HEGARTY and Andy Murdoch both scored their first goals for Rangers as Ally McCoist’s men ran out 2-0 winners in tonight’s friendly against Linfield.

Former Dungannon Swifts defender Hegarty clearly enjoyed his 40th minute header against Northern Ireland’s most successful club who were playing at Ibrox for the first time.

The 20-year-old had stated in his pre-match press conferences that he would love to score against his countrymen and he did just that with an accurate finish from a Fraser Aird delivery.

And with just a minute to go Murray Park starlet Murdoch, who had replaced Ian Black after the hour mark, tried his luck from 25 yards and his deflected shot spun over Linfield's substitute keeper Alan Blayney.

The result this evening, of course, was irrelevant as both sets of fans enjoyed this historic match and it was to be a special occasion for Gers teenagers Luca Gasparotto, Charlie Telfer, Daniel Stoney, Ryan Sinnamon, goalkeeper Alan Smith and scorer Murdoch as they all got their first taste of top team football in the second half.

The atmosphere generated by the crowd throughout was impressive but the opening stages of the game were played in midfield with neither team pushing forward with great intent.

Indeed it was not until the 11th minute that the first shot was attempted and it was from the visitors. Nathan Hanley’s deflected cross bounced in front of centre half Stephen Douglas but his effort from 20 yards soared into the Copland Stand.

On a night where a lot of substitutions are expected McCoist would not have been looking to make his first after just 16 minutes when Barrie McKay hobbled off and was replaced by Fraser Aird.

David Templeton was again looking lively early on and with his confidence high following his stunning double against Queen’s Park on Sunday he tried his luck from distance with a dipping right-foot shot which had to be watched closely by Ross Glendinning as it flew over his bar.

Temps was again playing in the hole behind Lee McCulloch and on 22 minutes he found space and teed up the skipper who tried to find the opposite bottom corner of the net but couldn’t get the required curl on his shot.

Rangers were looking the far likelier to get the opening goal and before the half hour mark Black had his hands on his head when his powerful left foot drive from distance went over after a good break down the left by Aird.

Linfield, however, were still in the game and a long ball from Douglas caused a bit of confusion between Lee Wallace and Emilson Cribari and Matthew Tipton’s snap shot flew across Neil Alexander and inches wide of the target.

On 39 minutes good link up play on the right between Ulstermen Andy Mitchell and Hegarty resulted in the latter playing a good cross into the danger area but Templeton couldn’t get his foot to the ball and it was booted clear.

It was not long, however, before Rangers got their noses in front and it was that man Hegarty who scored a dream goal.

The 20-year-old rose above the Linfield defence to power a header into the net and as he ran back to the half way line he looked over to his manager and both started a Gangnam Style dance to celebrate the moment.

For the start of the second period McCoist made three changes with towering Canadian stopper Gasparotto taking the place of Emilson Cribari in defence while Robbie Crawford and Kal Naismith slotted in for Kyle Hutton and Lee McCulloch respectively.

This did little to change the flow of the game with Rangers continuing to dominate and after Templeton had come close with an acrobatic overhead kick Black hit a stinging shot from 25 yards which was well saved.

Just before the hour mark there was more activity on the home bench with three more substitutions.

Argyriou went on for Lee Wallace while both Murdoch and Telfer were given firm handshakes from their boss and Kenny McDowall as they made their top team debuts.

Within minutes Jeffrey also made sweeping changes with several players given their chance to shine on the lush Ibrox turf and almost immediately the Belfast Blues had the ball in the net when their number 9 Peter Thomson glanced a great header beyond Alexander but the far side linesman quickly raised his flag for offside.

This resulted in a chorus of boos from the Linfield fans, and from the Rangers supporters as well!

There was to be more debuts handed out by McCoist with full back Sinnamon, goalkeeper Smith and winger Stoney getting 20 minutes and every one of the club’s rising stars looked composed on the big stage.

Linfield will have felt they should have equalised when Billy Joe Burns’ cross from the left was missed by sub Ryan Henderson who looked the favourite to head home from six yards.

But with just 60 seconds left Murdoch made it 2-0 when he picked up the ball and his 25 yard shot gave sub keeper Blayney no chance albeit he was aided by a deflection off a defender.

RANGERS (4-4-2): Alexander (Smith 70); Hegarty, Cribari (Gasparotto 46), Faure (Stoney 70), Wallace (Argyriou 61 (Sinnamon 70); Mitchell, Black (Murdoch 61), Hutton (Crawford 46), McKay (Aird 16); Templeton (Telfer 61), McCulloch (Naismith 46)

SUBS NOT USED: None

 

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Ally McCoist on last night's game:

 

Linfield Friendly Was A Great Occasion

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ALLY MCCOIST admits he enjoyed tonight’s friendly against Linfield and that he was delighted with the contributions from his Murray Park young guns that were handed their top team debuts.

Ulsterman Chris Hegarty opened the scoring against the Belfast Blues in the 40th minute with an accurate header which prompted the manager and Kenny McDowall to join the defender in a Gangnam-Style dance as he celebrated (see photo above!).

In the second half teenage starlets Luca Gasparotto, Daniel Stoney, Charlie Telfer, Alan Smith, Ryan Sinnamon and Andy Murdoch, who scored Rangers’ second goal with a minute of the match remaining, all got a run-out and looked confident and composed.

McCoist believes that getting the chance to sample the action at Ibrox this evening will be hugely beneficial at the start of their blossoming careers and that it was a night for everyone associated with both clubs to savour.

He said: “It was great and I was really keen actually to get our young ones on in the second half.

“I thought it was a great education for them and it was a really big learning curve for them.

“It took maybe most of them 5-10 minutes to get used to the speed and the physical aspect of it but after that I thought they did away fine, absolutely.

“You just hope that is the first of many appearances for a few of them and it certainly looks as though we might have to use them as we have two more injuries.

“Barrie McKay has got a really sore one and Argy went over on his ankle again so I think there is every chance we will do that.

“Luca went on at centre back and stood up to it fine, in that position you have to be a bit more aggressive and I thought he did fine.

“Andy Murdoch also got his goal so obviously I’ll not be scared to throw them in if need be in the next three or four games.â€

At 21 Kal Naismith was the oldest player in the Rangers team at the full time whistle which again highlighted McCoist's need to bolster his squad.

He said: “I didn’t even know that and of course it does.

“I’ve already said we need players to come in and we actually need experience to come in and help the boys more than anything.

“It’s all very well giving youth a chance but you have to give it a chance when it’s protected by a bit of experience.

“That’s what we need as much as anything.

“But with the greatest of respect the result was immaterial tonight.

“It was just a thank you for the support Linfield as a club have shown our club in our hour of need.

“It was a great occasion and the most important thing was that it was the two clubs getting together rather than the result.â€

Barrie McKay was taken off after just 16 minutes of tonight's game but McCoist is keeping his fingers crossed his injury is not a bad one.

He added: “Barrie twisted his boot and the boy accidently stood on him as he twisted it. I’m hopeful it’s just bruising.â€

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I haven't seen a figure, but it was nowhere near a sellout, estimated at around 15,000 according to rangersmedia.co.uk.

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That's a poor crowd I thought with the friendship they have down the years it would have been fairly full. Linfield may see themselfs and rangers as one but with that crowd just shows rangers don't give a sh*t about them. I'm sure linfield brought a big away following.

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That's a poor crowd I thought with the friendship they have down the years it would have been fairly full. Linfield may see themselfs and rangers as one but with that crowd just shows rangers don't give a sh*t about them. I'm sure linfield brought a big away following.

Linfield took around 600 according to the match report on their official site. If the estimate of 15,000 was accurate then, ok it's disappointing but it's all too easy to criticise.

 

To be fair, this was a midweek friendly that received minimal publicity. As far as I could tell, it wasn't even listed on the BBC or Sky fixtures pages. In fact if I hadn't come across the preview on the official Rangers site, I wouldn't have known the match was taking place.

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Was at the match last night and though the turnout by rangers fans was a bit poor enjoyed the game and the day.

Met up with a few friends and had quite a bit to drink so hung over today.

Have to say I was proud of the amount of noise all us bluemen made and got behind our team and was pleased that both teams came over at the end and applauded us.

All in all a great day in Glasgow as always. Chelsea rangers and linfield, the blues brothers. WRTP.

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Was at the match last night and though the turnout by rangers fans was a bit poor enjoyed the game and the day.

Met up with a few friends and had quite a bit to drink so hung over today.

Have to say I was proud of the amount of noise all us bluemen made and got behind our team and was pleased that both teams came over at the end and applauded us.

All in all a great day in Glasgow as always. Chelsea rangers and linfield, the blues brothers. WRTP.

I should know this, but don't: what does WRTP mean pls?

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Linfield took around 600 according to the match report on their official site. If the estimate of 15,000 was accurate then, ok it's disappointing but it's all too easy to criticise.

 

To be fair, this was a midweek friendly that received minimal publicity. As far as I could tell, it wasn't even listed on the BBC or Sky fixtures pages. In fact if I hadn't come across the preview on the official Rangers site, I wouldn't have known the match was taking place.

 

The only reason I heard about was the update Rangers posted on their Facebook link

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I don't think the kickoff time helped either. 7:15 pm seems to be to be an awkward compromise, allowing people less time than usual to get to the match after work, making things awkward for those traveling from south of the border, or the other side of Scotland, for instance, and still partially clashing with the night's televised Champions League fixtures.

 

Still it was a historic occasion, the first time Linfield have played at Ibrox, and who's to say it'll be the last? Hopefully any future Rangers v Linfield fixtures will be better planned with improved publicity and with a correspondingly improved attendance.

 

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Linfield took around 600 according to the match report on their official site. If the estimate of 15,000 was accurate then, ok it's disappointing but it's all too easy to criticise.

To be fair, this was a midweek friendly that received minimal publicity. As far as I could tell, it wasn't even listed on the BBC or Sky fixtures pages. In fact if I hadn't come across the preview on the official Rangers site, I wouldn't have known the match was taking place.

Well I say your right maybe rangers just didn't do enough to advertise I'm sure the crowd will be bigger next time.

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