RANGERS tonight opened the new Academy stand at the Hummel Training Centre with a friendly against Chelsea.

The brand new stand at the Hummel Training Centre, which holds 250, was funded by the Rangers Fans Fighting Fund (RFFF), as well as a contribution from the Scottish Football Partnership.

The Rangers Under 18s will play their home games at the new venue, with selected Reserve team fixtures also taking place there. All Rangers Women games will now be played in front of the facility too.

But the building hasn’t just provided a covered stand, which is a regulation of the Scottish Women’s Premier League. The venue now holds the Academy’s education suite and provides four more changing rooms on site, as well as referee’s facilities.

Chairman of the RFFF Andrew McCormick and Head of Academy Craig Mulholland cut the ribbon on the new tunnel before the Rangers Under 23s took on Chelsea’s Under 23s in front of a sold out stand.

Head of Academy Craig Mulholland said: “It’s great, it has been a long time in planning, it is great for the young players tonight to first of all play on a pitch like that and a stand which is full and I think the benefits are what it is going to bring in a football development sense.

“All the staff and all the players are really excited.”

Andrew McCormick added: “It’s wonderful to see it, it’s a legacy for the fans who, back in the dark days, got together and raised substantial funds and then we decided how best to use these funds and I’d like to think that everybody will be quite pleased with the outcome.”

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