THE ‘Road to Hampden’ continues for Rangers’ under-20s this evening as they travel to St Mirren Park in Round Four of the Little Big Shot Youth Cup.

The Buddies are a side whom Rangers have had mixed fortunes against already this season, and while there is no question over the Light Blues’ desire to lift a trophy they last collected in 2014 (incidentally at St Mirren Park), Head of Academy Craig Mulholland insists player development will always be at the forefront of anything the Auchenhowie youth coaches do.

Mulholland explained: “For Ian Durrant, David McCallum and the staff working at the under-20s, there is absolutely no pressure on them at all to go and win the Youth Cup.

“If we go and play our under-17s in it, and we happen to lose a game, then so be it, as it will be the right thing to do.

“We are about producing winners, and we won’t hide away from that, and for a young player, they will be desperate to go and beat St Mirren – and rightly so – and likewise the opposition will be desperate to go and beat you.

“If we win it, great, and we will be delighted. But our aim is to develop young players and we will never lose sight of that.”

It has been almost a month since the 20s last played in a competitive game, and going into their enforced break, they were in scintillating form as Aberdeen and Dundee United were demolished 5-2 and 4-1 respectively.

That superb goalscoring spree has continued into the two friendly matches the squad have faced since then in the shape of a 4-1 win over Edusport Academy and a 9-0 success against Airdrieonians.

In the last round of the Cup, Ian Durrant’s side cruised through following a 4-1 win over Queen’s Park at Auchenhowie back in early November.

Tonight’s game at St Mirren Park kicks-off at 7pm, and you can follow all the action on @RFC_Youth with full highlights and reaction following on rangers.co.uk and the official YouTube channel later tonight.

 

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