A Rangers Guide To Division Three
By Alex Horburgh
Updated Friday, 15th June 2012
After much discussion it seems to have come down to Rangers being allowed to stay in the SPL with a points deduction versus demotion to Division 3. We make no judgements in this article but what if the Ibrox giants WERE relegated to the basement of the SF
QUEENS PARK: This would effectively be Rangers main 'derby' match if the nightmare scenario of SFL football was to become a reality for the Ibrox faithful next season. An away day at Hampden wouldn't be too painful an experience for Rangers fans and two league matches there may also constitute demos against the SFA by Gers fans still smarting from any decision to reduce them to 3rd Division competitors.
CLYDE: Broadwood would be well filled for what was once a regular 'derby' match for the Gers in the 50's, 60's and early 70's when Clyde played out of Rutherglen. Former Rangers hero Graham Roberts led The Bully Wee to Scottish Cup glory over Celtic at Cumbernauld not so long ago. Maybe the ex-England and Spurs man could return for the visits to Clyde to conduct the Rangers faithful as he infamously did in an Old Firm match in the 80's.
BERWICK RANGERS: Much has been made of TV companies being unwilling to buy into a major Old Firm power playing outside the Premier League in Scotland but four games with Berwick would make fascinating viewing for some neutrals. The borderers, also known as 'The Wee Rangers', inflicted the most embarrassing defeat of the Govan men's 140 year history in 1967 when they beat them 1-0 in a Scottish Cup tie thanks to a goal from Sammy Reid. The historical significance of this game alone with the tables turned and a possibly inexperienced Glasgow Gers outfit looking to make their mark might prompt highlights at least from a satellite broadcaster.
STIRLING ALBION: The club relegated from Division 2 last season last met Rangers in the league in the 1960's but this trip to the historical city that was the stomping ground of William Wallace is within striking distance of Glasgow. Another SFL club from the central belt that would benefit greatly from the financial clout of Rangers fans on an away day in unfamiliar territory.
ELGIN CITY: They once gave Celtic a fright in the Scottish Cup but the Highlanders might be pinching themselves if they had to face Rangers four times in the league in 2012/13. That is something you could never have predicted as being even close to reality when City gained admission to the SFL from the Highland League at the turn of the century.
MONTROSE: The Links Park club might ask for their home league matches against a demoted Rangers to be played at Pittodrie. It would certainly be an all ticket affair if Rangers came to the wee Angus town twice in 2012/13.
PETERHEAD: The Blue Noses visiting 'The Bloo Toon' would certainly provide a story for the media. The Aberdeenshire town of Peterhead and the local Football Club is nicknamed The Bloo Toon after the blue socks or 'mogganers' once worn by local fishermen. Rangers might actually find themselves with more local support than they expected in this corner of the North East 30 miles or so from Aberdeen. Balmoor stadium entertained Celtic in the cup last season and locals would almost certainly be excited by the other half of the Old Firm being available twice in the new season for league matches at Balmoor.
EAST STIRLINGSHIRE: Currently playing at Stenhousemuir but the Falkirk club founded in the town's suburb of Bainsford were created in 1881 as BAINSFORD BRITANNIA. This might raise a smile amongst a Rangers support coming to terms with a season in the basement of Scottish League football.
ANNAN ATHLETIC: A border outpost that might make Michael Kelly cringe. The former Celtic director said in support of continued Old Firm matches next season ''who wants to go to Dumfries or Brechin?'' during STV's recent on air debate 'Rangers-The Downfall'. We presume he was referring to the likes of Annan as well.
Reports last year that Celtic would be willing to start in League 1 or 2 to gain entry to English football obviously means that the likes of Rochdale and Accrington are preferable to some of the SFL's 'outposts' as far as Michael is concerned. All of the above SFL clubs would certainly benefit financially from any vote to demote Rangers to Div Three.