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 Pre-season Friendly (5); Ibrox, Glasgow; Saturday 26 July 2003; 3:00pm
  Thompson (20') 
 Mols (81')

Attendance: 28,000
Halftime: 1-0

Unsworth (pen:63')
Li Tie (79')
Stubbs (90')

Referee: Stuart Dougall

Match Summary

Everton arrived at Ibrox with a fairly strong team, shorn of Richard Wright, who is not yet fit after sustaining his silly summer shoulder accident.   Carsley and Pembridge were sidelined with knocks sustained in pre-season training.  Duncan Ferguson returned to Ibrox on the bench.  For Rangers, a certain Michael Ball was making his comeback from chronic knee-injury problems after joining from Everton two years ago.

Rooney set Radzinski free with a lovely through ball early on but Muscat tackled well to end the danger.  Stubbs then had a pop from a free-kick after just three minutes.  But after a bright start, things quietened down a little as Rangers started to take possession of the midfield.

A good attack then saw the ball driven across the face of the Rangers goal but Radzinski could not connect.  Neil McCann then set up a wonderful pinpoint cross for Steven Thompson, who powered an excellent header past Simonsen to open the scoring after 20 mins.  It was a just reflection of the game, with Rangers showing much better poise and control than a ragged Everton side.  

Another free-kick opportunity for Everton was taken by Pistone, but blocked by the wall, and Stubbs again drilled the rebound fractionally wide.  Rooney was trying his best to raise the Everton game but he was being heavily guarded by the Rangers defenders.  Then, a heavy challenge saw him laying prostrate, and he was then stretchered off, to the massive concern of every Evertonian.  Kevin Campbell replaced him.

If Everton were poor with Rooney on the field trying to raise their game, they looked even more sloppy without him.  Lovenkrands was a big danger, and David Weir was forced to foul him on the edge of the area but Simonsen made a good save, although he had to secure it at the second attempt.  Stubbs and Campbell came close again toward the interval.

Niclas Alexandersson came on after the interval, replacing Watson.

Finally after 10 minutes of the second half, Everton produced their best football of the game, with pace from Radzinski and vision from Gravesen.  But the outcome was only a corner and it came to nothing more.  Unsworth and Gemmill then replaced Linderoth and Naysmith, neither of whom had been that impressive.

Radzinski then won a penalty after Muscat tripped him as he streaked into the area.  Rangers were typically upset, but David Unsworth fired it home with his usual aplomb.  Moments later, Radzinski was in a gain but pushed it fractionally wide, as Everton came into their own, with Thomas Gravesen the central architect.

Another promising attack saw Alexandersson's weak centre go straight to goalkeeper Kloss before Ferguson and Li Tie joined the fray.  And it was less than a minute before Li Tie powered in an unstoppable rocket shot first time off a ball from Alexandersson!   But Michael Mols equalized moments later, from a very offside position.  

And in the last minute, a fabulous finish for Alan Stubbs, who had been booed relentlessly by the Huns.  A free-kick on the edge of the area, and a fabulous strike deflected (by Michael Ball of all people!) past Kloss for the final goal of the game.


Match Facts
Rangers (4-4-2)
Red & white shirts, white shorts, blue socks
Malcolm (64' Dowie)
Capucho (46' Arveladze)
Lovenkrands (59' Mols)
Thompson (72' De Boer)

Subs Not Used:

Yellow Cards: 

Red Cards:
Everton (4-4-2)
Amber shirts, blue shorts, amber socks
Watson (46' Alexandersson)
Gravesen (76' Li Tie)
Linderoth (63' Gemmill)
Naysmith (63' Unsworth)
Radzinski (76' Ferguson)
Rooney (36' Campbell)

Subs not used:

Yellow Cards:

Red Cards:


(Injured:) Carsley,
Pembridge, Wright
Match Reports


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Steve Milne

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