Rangers History

EARLY YEARS

Rangers were born in March 1872, after a group of teenage rowing enthusiasts watched a game of football in Glasgow Green. Brothers Peter and Moses McNeil and Peter Campbell and William McBeath got their heads together to give rise to the club, who played just two matches in their first year.

It’s believed that Moses McNeil suggested the name ‘Rangers’ after seeing it in a book about English rugby. The club played their first game in May 1972 at Flecher’s Haugh in Glasgow Green against Callander, a match that ended in a 0-0 draw.

The year 1873 is the official founding of Rangers as that was the year the elected office bearers. The first time the club donned blue shirts was their second game, against Clyde (not the present-day club) and won it 11-0.

Five years after their founding, Rangers made it to their first major cup final against Vale of Leven. The game was played at First Hampden Park and it finished 1-1 so a replay beckoned. Rangers refused to turn up for the replay and Vale were awarded the cup. The teams met the following year in the Charity Cup. Rangers won 2-1 and the Glasgow Merchants’ Charity Cup was the first major trophy to be won by the team.

The 1890-91 season saw the inception of the Scottish Football League, and Rangers were one of ten original members. Rangers' first ever league match took place on 16 August 1890 and resulted in a 5–2 victory over Hearts. After finishing equal-top with Dumbarton a play-off was held at Cathkin Park to decide the who would be champions. The match finished 2–2 and the title was shared for the only time in its history - the first of Rangers' 54 championships.

Next: Glory Years

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