Academy 17s v Rangers 17s
Ayr United 17s played hosts to a very strong Rangers side at Prestwick Academy on Sunday morning. Ayr started the game slowly and seemed overawed by the strong Rangers side made up mainly of full time players, with 5 internationalists on the field. This should be taken as a compliment and proof that this under 17 side has acquitted itself well since moving up to the top league.
The conditions were not ideal at kick off with a very strong wind. Rangers won the toss and decided to play with the wind in the first half. They instantly put Ayr under pressure from the start and soon raced into a 2 goal lead within the first 15 minutes. However the spirit of this Ayr team is very strong and they worked very hard against the elements and created one or two chances with Chris Vance (pictured) having the best chance to score after some terrific build up play from the hard working midfield ending with Ryan Nisbet crossing well but unfortunately Chris didn’t connected with his header from 6 yards.
Rangers continued to look very dangerous on the break and James Hart again this week had a very good game and he pulled off a string of fine saves to keep the score at 2-0. However he could do nothing when Rangers broke through the Ayr defence to score again just before half time.
As luck would have it the strong wind seemed to drop after the break and any advantage Rangers had in the first half disappeared although that said the better conditions allowed this good Ayr side to get their passing game going, they looked more comfortable in the second half and had much more of the ball without creating too many clear cut chances.
In the final stages Rangers capitalised on some poor Ayr defending to make it four and then a great individual finish saw them score again to finish the game comfy winners.
After the game manager Andy Willock said “We were well beaten by a very strong Rangers team and we need to learn from this and take it into our next game, which is a very tough away fixture to Hibs. Although our boys cannot be faulted for effort and work rate we need to eliminate the costly defensive errors. However I’m confident we’ll do this and that we will do very well this season.”