KENNY Miller marked his first appearance for Rangers in over three years by netting in the Ibrox club's opening pre-season friendly against Buckie Thistle last night.

But the former Scotland international was still overshadowed by his young team- mate Calum Gallagher who scored two goals in a routine 3-0 victory.

Miller, who got his third spell at the Glasgow giants underway in the second half, was his usual industrious self during the 45 minutes he spent on the field.

And the 34-year-old striker capped his run-out with eight minutes remaining when he latched onto a Dean Shiels through-ball and slotted home coolly.

He could, though, not match the tally of Gallagher, who is some 15 years his junior, as the youngster once again excelled and contributed a brace.

Those who had travelled to Victoria Park to see the star signings Ally McCoist had made during the close season in action were disappointed - to start with at least.

Kris Boyd was left out of the squad altogether while his fellow new arrival Miller was on the bench.

There were, though, several first team players in the starting line-up. Cammy Bell was in goals while Sebastien Faure, Stevie Smith, Kyle Hutton, Lee McCulloch, Nicky Clark and Nicky Law all featured from the first whistle.

Elsewhere, there was a rare run-out in the side for promising young midfielder Andy Murdoch and his contemporaries Luca Gasparotto and Gallagher.

Barrie McKay, the teenage winger who spent last season on loan at SPFL Championship club Morton, also started the game in Moray.

The match got underway 10 minutes late due to the visitors being held up en route from their training base in Brora as the Queen's Baton made its way through Forres and Elgin.

McCoist played a 4-1-4-1 formation with Hutton, who signed a one-year extension to his contract during the close season, slotting into the holding midfielder's role.

Gallagher, Murdoch, Law and McKay lined up just in front of Hutton and Clark was given the chance to show what he was capable of in attack by himself.

Smith, preferred at left- back to Lee Wallace from the start, created the opening chance of the game on a perfect evening for football after just four minutes.

He supplied McKay and his team-mate burst through on goal before unleashing a powerful shot that Kevin Main in the Buckie goal did very well to block.

McKay turned provider in 19 minutes to create an opening for Clark. The striker scooped his shot over the crossbar, however, and the score remained level.

Buckie, who got their 125th season under way with this glamour friendly, finished in 10th position in the Highland League last season and the huge gulf in quality showed.

But Thistle nearly snatched a shock lead in the 27th minute when captain McCulloch failed to deal with a speculative Graeme Stewart punt upfield.

Liam Baxter was clean through on goal and should have netted. But he hesitated and that allowed Gasparotto and McCulloch to get back and dispossess the forward.

Rangers took the lead in the 32nd minute with a simple move. Smith got up the left flank and whipped a cross into the six-yard box that Gallagher nodded into the net.

The youngster added his second just two minutes later. McKay, who looked highly impressive whenever he got on the ball, fed him in the Buckie area and he drilled a low shot beyond the clutches of Main.

Clark failed to capitalise on any of the scoring opportunities which fell to him in the opening 45 minutes of a game that attracted a crowd of several thousand. There is a long way to go in the 2014/15 campaign and many matches to be played. Nevertheless, he will have to make his appearances count given the competition he now has for a start.

Ally McCoist made seven changes for the second half and brought on Scott Gallacher, Richard Foster, Darren McGregor, Wallace, Ian Black, Dean Shiels and Miller. And they were joined on the field of play early in the second half by Fraser Aird and Robbie Crawford who took over from McKay and Crawford respectively.

Craig Halkett was also given a taste of first-team action when he replaced McCulloch at centre-half midway through the second half. In total, McCoist used 21 players.

Marius Zaliukas, the former Hearts stopper who is currently on trial with Rangers after leaving Leeds United, was also with the Ibrox squad in Buckie.