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  1. KRIS Boyd today revealed how embracing the futuristic fitness regime at Rangers has helped him get in the shape - and form - of his life. Boyd has often been criticised for his lack of mobility and his dubious workrate during his two-and-a-half often fantastic, but frequently frustrating, seasons at Ibrox. Yet, his critics - and there are still a fair few despite his hugely impressive strike rate - have been unable to level that accusation at him in recent weeks. For the 25-year-old has contributed far, far more to the Glasgow club's cause than just goals during the 2008/09 campaign. Indeed, after his double in the 3-1 win over Hamilton at New Douglas Park in the SPL last weekend, Rangers manager Walter Smith declared Kris was in the best physical condition he has ever been in. And the enigmatic player has told how working with Adam Owen, the Head of Sports Science at Murray Park, has been responsible for turning him into a far more complete all-round footballer. Former Welsh professional Owen has introduced a wide range of modern training methods since arriving at Rangers from Sheffield Wednesday shortly after Smith returned last year. Boyd said: "With Adam here at Rangers, every aspect of our fitness and diet is closely monitored and I, along with all of the boys at the club, have definitely benefited from that. "They can put whatever training programmes and fitness regimes in front of you they like, but, at the end of the day, it isn't going to be any use to you if you if you don't want to do it. "In the last three or four months I have really got my head down and probably worked as hard as I have ever done in training. Now I am starting to reap the rewards of that in the matches I am playing. "You get out of the game what you put into it and that has definitely been the case with me in recent weeks. Hopefully, I will continue to do well and score goals in the weeks and months ahead. "With the players we have in the team here we are always going to create chances. It is my responsibility to put them away and so far I have been doing that. "It was a good to get back into the team against Hamilton after a pretty long lay-off and it has been great to score in my last two games. With any luck, that is me up and running now. "There are so many good strikers here at the club that I know that if I stop producing the goods then there will be somebody there on the sidelines waiting to take my place in the team." That fate will not happen any time soon if the former Kilmarnock hit man manages to maintain the purple patch of form he is currently enjoying. He scored the opening goal in his side's straightforward Co-operative Insurance Cup quarter-final win over Hamilton at Ibrox on Tuesday night to take his tally for the season to seven. And he is almost certain to start against Inverness Caley Thistle tomorrow in what will be his team's first league match at home since they played Motherwell over five weeks ago on September 21. Who plays up front alongside Kris, though, is more of a dilemma for Gers manager Smith now with a clutch of top players all vying for a place in the starting line-up. Boyd played in tandem with Jean-Claude Darcheville in midweek and partnered both Kenny Miller and substitute Nacho Novo to good effect last weekend. In addition, Kyle Lafferty who scored a great header against Accies, has once again stated his desire to move from the left of midfield and play up front in the future. However, Kris, who grew up in Ayrshire supporting Rangers, is totally unconcerned who he is in the team with - just as long as he gets a game. He stressed: "I am happy to play with whoever the manager wants to play me with. The most important thing as far as I am concerned is just playing." Many Rangers fans would like to see Boyd given a prolonged run in the team alongside Miller as they feel the pair have different strengths and would complement each other. He said: "Every time I have played up front with Kenny I have felt we have done well together. I certainly enjoy playing with him. I think that, as a partnership, we have done well. "Hopefully, we can stay injury free and get the chance to play together soon to build on our understanding. I think we can definitely play well together." http://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/sport/display.var.2464739.0.0.php
  2. Hamilton entertain Rangers in the early kick off at New Douglas Park with a full card of SPL games to follow. More...
  3. ian1964

    No Barry

    WALTER SMITH will not give in to temptation and recall Barry Ferguson for tomorrow's SPL trip to Hamilton. The Rangers skipper made his comeback after four months out injured on Tuesday when he played 62 minutes of the 3-0 reserve win at St Mirren. Ferguson looked comfortable at Love Street and has continued to be heavily involved in training in the latter part of the week. But given the amount of time he has spent on the sidelines, Smith is adamant he has no intention of using the 30-year-old at New Douglas Park. The manager said: "Barry played in the reserve game the other day but he has been out for four months now and it'll take him a while to get ready. "We've got another reserve game next week and hopefully we can fit in a bounce match as well. "I'm sure after he gets two - maybe three - games under his belt, we can start looking at getting him back into the first team. "It's important for us to get all of our best players back and he has been a big factor in our team so we look forward to him returning. "But we have a squad of players there and it is not necessary to rush him back. We'll make sure he is right this time. "With that, I mean fitness-wise. His injury has totally cleared up and there's no problem with it now. It's just a matter of getting his fitness ready." While Ferguson won't be involved, Lee McCulloch is pushing for a return after scoring in his latest second-string appearance in midweek. Chris Burke is another who is hoping to be in contention after a fine goal and an impressive performance against the Buddies. Steven Whittaker and Steven Smith are also back in full training but are unlikely to make the trip to Lanarkshire. Smith added: "We've got a selection headache now as we've got a large group of players available and it's down to me to select the right ones to win games. "There is good competition and that's a great thing. We've got quite a number of players coming back into the squad now. "Lee is fit again, Barry's on his way and Steven Whittaker and Steven Smith returned into the group this week. I've got a lot to choose from."
  4. I know that technically, you canââ?¬â?¢t win ââ?¬Ë?1 in a rowââ?¬â?¢, but please bare with me as hopefully youââ?¬â?¢ll see where this is going. As the 10th anniversary of our fantastic achievement approaches, I thought that it would be a good idea to relive my personal memories of this time, and recount those to the fellow forumees. I will apologies up front for any historical errors, or any dates, scores or scorers that I get wrong my memory isnââ?¬â?¢t what it used to be. The first game in the 9-in-a-row run was played at Douglas Park against Hamilton Accies and we were eager to dispose Celtic as Scottish Champions. Celtic had won the double the previous season in their ââ?¬Ë?anniversaryââ?¬â?¢ season, a feat that could be traced back to the unfortunate and untimely leg-break suffered by then Rangers captain Terry Butcher. Although confident of winning back our title, I donââ?¬â?¢t think any of the 1000ââ?¬â?¢s of Rangers fans present that day (Aug 13 1988) could have dreamed that they were witnessing the beginning of Rangers writing themselves into the annals of world football and on our way to dominating Scottish football for close to two decades. Going into the game and season, we were boosted by the arrival of further two big money signings from South of the border in the shape of Kevin Drinkell and Gary Stevens. Drinkell was a bit of an unknown quantity, but quickly proved himself to be a great striker and a fantastic addition to our squad. Gary Stevens was an established player with a wonderful pedigree and showed his class from his debut onwards. I think it is safe to say that we havenââ?¬â?¢t had a full back of his class since, and it could be argued that he was one of the best full backs ever to grace the light blue jersey. It was Gary Stevens who was unlikely first scorer of the season (ergo first scorer in the 9-in-a-row season) and Ally McCoist (who else) secured our opening day victory by a comfortable 2 goals to nil. We draw our opening home game of the season 0-0 with Hibs and defeated Clyde and Clydebank easily in the opening rounds of the League Cup. Next up was the first Old Firm game of the season and a chance to put one over the auld enemy and defending champions. The game didnââ?¬â?¢t start well, we were 1-0 down inside 3 minutes, then up-stepped Ally McCoist to bring us level. As the game approached the half-time interval, Rangers won a throw. Gary Stevens throw the ball in, it was headed on by Butcher and Ray Wilkins thundered an unstoppable shot into the Celtic net. After half-time, we destroyed Celtic and ran out 5-1 winners. Greame Souness decided that this was a time for showboating and rather than putting them to the sword he dictated play so we ripped the piss for the last 20 minutes. The game will be remembered for the goalkeeping antics of Ian Andrews, but in all honesty, he was at fault for only one of the five goals. What Iââ?¬â?¢ll remember the game for is singing ââ?¬Ë?Happy Birthday Dear Celticââ?¬â?¢ as the goals rained inââ?¬Â¦. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V-bWchIBBbI Straight after that game, I went on holiday to Florida for 3 weeks and missed a lot of games including the European tie against Katowice and the League Cup Semi Final victory over Hearts. I also missed the next few games as on my return, I lost my Grandmother. The next game I can remember being at was the loss at Pittodrie on the day Neil Simpson ruined Ian Durrantââ?¬â?¢s career. The game and result paled into insignificance once the seriousness of the injury was revealed. Next up as a 1-0 victory at Easter Road followed by one of the best League Cup Finals I can remember, We defeated Aberdeen 3-2 thanks to 2 Ally McCoist goals and a great strike from Ian Ferguson. So, we had secured the first trophy of the season in a dramatic final and were well placed in the league. It was also the first time in our history that we had won the League Cup in 3 consecutive seasons http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kaTfJqASNSQ We were then knocked out of Europe by Cologne and were well beaten by the Germans over the two leagues. This was a major disappointment as Souness had assembled a very decent team and squad and many Rangers fans, buoyed by a couple of encouraging runs under Souness, believed that we were about to make our mark in Europe, but it wasnââ?¬â?¢t to be. Our good form continued in the league until we were beaten 3-1 at Parkhead in November and then lost our way a little dropping points to Dundee, Dundee United and Hearts (who outclassed us at Tynecastle). Back to back narrow victories over Hibs and Hamilton didnââ?¬â?¢t appear to be the ideal preparation for the 3rd OF game of the season. However, once again after falling behind to an early goal, Rangers bounced back to record another emphatic OF victory by 4 goals to 1 with Walters (2), Butcher and I Ferguson getting the goals. If I remember correctly, this was Ian Fergusonââ?¬â?¢s first OF goal and his celebrations were as wild and enthusiastic as any fans! Due to the hangovers (!!) we then lost the next game away to Motherwell. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Rj5-8M6yRA&mode=related&search= We then played Gretna in a game for the Lockerbie Disaster Fund and Gary McSwegan scored in a 2-1 defeat. The next game of note was a 8-0 Scottish Cup victory against Stranraer then a 2-2 draw away to St Johnstone which is notable for the fact that it was Rangersââ?¬â?¢ final game ever at Muirton Park. This was a testimonial game. The league run in was in full swing now and we powered our way to the finishing line, winning the league from Aberdeen by six points (our 39th League title). The title was wrapped up in a 4-0 thrashing of Hearts at Ibrox and the unlikely hero of the day was Mel Sterland who scored 2 goals (as did Kevin Drinkell). We rested most of our players for the remainder of the season and won only 1 further game, and that was the game after securing the league, beating DUFC 2-0. We then faced Celtic at Hampden for the chance to secure a historic treble. The game will be remembered for two terrible refereeing decisions. Firstly, Celtic scored from a Rangers throw-in taken by Roy Aitken and then a perfectly good Davie Cooper goal was chopped off when Paddy Bonnar was fouled by his own player. A sad end to the season, but one that Iââ?¬â?¢ll remember for the Tims singing ââ?¬Ë?Mo Mo Super Moââ?¬â?¢ at the final in reference to Mo Johnston returning from French football. However, as the next article will reiterate and history will tell us, it wasnââ?¬â?¢t the green and grey that he would return to Scotland to wear, by the famous light blue. Cammy F
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