RANGERS have won the Club Academy Scotland under-18 league by defeating Hearts 3-1 at Oriam this afternoon.

It caps a wonderful season for the Light Blues having already banked the Scottish FA Youth Cup last week, while a number of the squad were part of the team which brought the Alkass Cup home from Qatar in February.

Gers were dominant this afternoon to clinch the title at the Jambos’ impressive Oriam facility, and they took the lead on 28 minutes, with full-back James Maxwell showing excellent close-control inside the area to firstly bring the ball down, turn away from his marker and fire beyond home ‘keeper Harry Stone.

Four minutes later, Gers made it 2-0, with captain for the day Kyle McClelland wonderfully volleying home a Kai Kennedy corner with real aplomb from around 12-yards out.

Hearts pulled one back 13 minutes into the second half, but seldom threatened to level matters and force Gers to wait at least another week to wrap the league up.

Indeed, a moment of individual brilliance from Kai Kennedy sealed the title in injury time. 25-yards out to the left of goal, he hit an outstanding free-kick into the far top corner, well out of the reach of the goalkeeper.

Winning the title means Gers will compete in the UEFA Youth League next season. Read more about that by clicking here.

RANGERS: (3-4-2-1): Kinnear; O’Connor, McClelland, King (Butterworth); Patterson, Williamson, Dickson, Maxwell; Balde (McKechnie), Kennedy; Young-Coombes (Yates).

SUBS NOT USED: Budinauckas, Muir, McKinnon.

Since 2002, Rangers Youth Development Company profits have been directed to Rangers Football Club’s youth programme – with almost £8 million provided to date.

And in January this year, Academy Head Craig Mulholland and youth graduate Glenn Middleton accepted an RYDC donation of £400,000.

For full details on RYDC’s growing portfolio of products – the re-launched Rangers Pools, Rangers Lotto, Rising Stars, Scratchcards, Stadium Bricks and the Youth Members Club – visit www.rydc.co.uk or call 0141 427 4914.

The Rangers Youth Development Company has donated almost £8 million to the Rangers Academy since 2002.

One of their main revenue generators is Rangers Lotto – which costs just £1 to play, is one of the most successful products in RYDC’s growing portfolio and fans have won cash prizes of £10 million since it was launched in 1994.

For full details on all their products – Rangers Lotto, Rangers Pools, Rising Stars, Scratchcards, Stadium Bricks and the Youth Members Club – visit www.rydc.co.uk or call 0141 427 4914.

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