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Berwick Rangers
Berwick Rangers.png
Full name Berwick Rangers Football Club
Nickname(s) The Borderers, The Black & Gold, The Dream Team, ""The Wee Gers""
Founded 1884
Ground Shielfield Park,
Berwick-upon-Tweed
(Capacity: 4,131 (1,366 seated))
League Scottish Third Division
2008–09 Scottish Third Division, 9th
Home colours
Away colours

Berwick Rangers Football Club are a football team based in the English Border town of Berwick-upon-Tweed, who play in the Scottish Football League Third Division. They are currently managed by Jimmy Crease.

Contents

History

Officially formed in 1881, though recent research indicates that 1884 is a more likely date of formation.[1], the club had a nomadic existence before eventually settling down at Shielfield Park in 1954. Having initially gained admittance to the Scottish Border League in 1905, they were finally elected member of the Scottish Football League in 1955, where they have played ever since, despite low attendances and frequent financial problems.

A notable early success was a 3–0 win over Dundee in the Scottish Cup in 1954 in a run which saw them reach the quarter-final, only to lose to Rangers 4–0. Ten years later they reached the semi-final of the Scottish League Cup losing to Rangers 3–1.

Arguably their greatest success came in 1967, when they beat Rangers 1–0 in the Scottish Cup under the management of player manager Jock Wallace. It was the highlight of a memorable cup run, which had seen them break a club record in beating Vale of Leithen 8–1 in the first round. The result sent shockwaves around Scottish football and led to a number of the Rangers players leaving Ibrox; it was also the club's greatest home attendance of 13,365. They were paired with Hibernian in the following round but lost 1–0 in front of a crowd of nearly 30,000.

The following years saw little progress until the late 1970s, when under the management of Dave Smith they won the Division Two title in 1979. Despite that success they were unable to build and suffered a slow decline through the 1980s. The nadir came in season 1988–89 when they were nearly bankrupted and the club were locked out of Shielfield, having to play their games elsewhere. In 1988 Jim Jefferies took over as manager and led the team to a club record 21 game unbeaten run.

The club weathered this and other crises in the early 1990s, narrowly avoiding going into administration in 1994. Later in the decade Berwick enjoyed a bit more in the way of success only missing out on promotion to Division One due to league reorganisation in 1994. They were relegated to the Division Three in 1997 but under the management of Paul Smith regained promotion in 2000. Under Smith's stewardship they took both Rangers and Heart of Midlothian to replays in the Scottish Cup.

They were again relegated to the Third Division in 2005, and narrowly missed out on an instant return to the Second Division the following season, this time losing to Alloa Athletic in the Second Division play-offs. Despite losing a good deal of the squad to other clubs in the close season, manager John Coughlin exceeded expectations by rebuilding the team and guiding them to the Third Division championship in 2007, their first title in 28 years, in a season which also saw a new record for consecutive league wins.

John Coughlin resigned as Berwick Rangers manager after a 3–0 home loss to Alloa Athletic on 6 October 2007. He left with Berwick at the foot of the table with only 5 points after 9 games. Cowdenbeath coach Michael Renwick was appointed new manager on 25 October 2007.[2] However after a dismal season which saw Berwick finish bottom and ship 101 goals, including a 9–2 defeat to Peterhead, Renwick was relieved of his duties on 19 April 2008.[3] The official website reported on 12 May 2008 that Camelon manager Allan McGonigal would take over as manager. He resigned from his post on the 13th of November 2008. His announcement came in the wake of a deal which sees a fan led consortium take control of the club. On 27 January the consortium concluded their deal to buy the club[4].

Notable former players

Status

They are one of a handful of teams in the world to play in a national football league other than their own country's, where both countries have their own fully professional competitions. In Wales, the three largest professional clubs all play in the English pyramid—Cardiff City and Swansea City in The Football League, and Wrexham in Conference National. However, the Welsh Premier League is mainly a semi-professional competition with only two fully professional sides—one of which, The New Saints, moved its home ground from Wales to England in 2007. The Wellington Phoenix, based in Wellington, are the only New Zealand professional team in the Australian A-League, but the recently-founded New Zealand Football Championship is semi-professional. A similar situation pertains with Toronto FC, Montreal Impact and Vancouver Whitecaps FC who all participate in the American Soccer Pyramid in the United States, while the Canadian Soccer League is semi-professional. Another team that meets these criteria is Derry City of Northern Ireland, which played in the League of Ireland, the league of the Republic of Ireland. Liechtensteiner club FC Vaduz play in the Swiss Challenge League, while San Marino and FC Andorra play in Italy and Spain respectively.

The town of Berwick-upon-Tweed is near to the Scottish border and is closer to Edinburgh than to Newcastle upon Tyne. The old town is on the Scottish side of the traditional border, the River Tweed, and Berwick has formerly been part of Scotland. The time (and expense) involved in travelling to away matches against English opposition would be greater than it is to travel to matches in Scotland. The club also formerly played in the East of Scotland League, which contains other nearby Borders teams, prior to joining the Scottish League; for season 2007–08, the club's reserve side have rejoined this competition.

There is also some controversy over Berwick's identity[5]. Entry into the English Football League would result in a round-trip of almost 1,000 miles should Berwick be faced with playing potential opponents Plymouth Argyle, England's southernmost and westernmost league team. Berwick have never played in the Scottish top flight, so questions of potential competition in European tournaments have not arisen (Derry City by contrast regularly contends for the Republic of Ireland league title and represents the country in UEFA competitions, while FC Vaduz regularly represent Liechtenstein).

Honours

Club records

Current squad

As of 19 October 2009

No. Position Player
-- Scotland GK Mark Peat
-- Scotland GK Steven Ellison (GK Coach)
-- Scotland DF Jamie Ewart
-- Scotland DF Graham Guy
-- Scotland DF Robbie Horn (Coach)
-- Scotland DF Andy McLean
-- Scotland DF Peter McMahon
-- Scotland DF Elliot Smith
-- Scotland MF Steven Notman
-- Scotland MF Paul McMullan
No. Position Player
-- Scotland MF Stuart Callaghan
-- Scotland MF Oliver Russell
-- Scotland MF Paul Currie
-- Scotland MF David Greenhill
-- Scotland MF Chris McMenamin
-- Scotland FW Fraser McLaren
-- Scotland FW Ian Little
-- England FW Damon Gray
-- Scotland FW Alan Brazil
-- Scotland FW Steven Radzynski

Managers

  • Scotland Bobby Ancell (Dec 1950-Apr 1952)
  • John Thompson (Aug 1952-Jan 1953)
  • Scotland Jerry Kerr (Apr 1953-Nov 1954)
  • ScotlandDanny McLennan (Nov 1957-Jan 1960)
  • Jim McIntosh (Apr 1960- Feb 1963)
  • Ian Spence (Aug 1963-Oct 1966)
  • Scotland Jock Wallace (Nov 1966-Jan 1969)
  • Scotland Harry Melrose (Mar 1969-Sep 1975)
  • Scotland Walter Galbraith (Oct 1975-Dec 1975)
  • Gordon Haig (Jan 1976-Sep 1976)
  • Scotland Dave Smith (Oct 1976-Oct 1980)
  • Scotland Frank Connor (Nov 1980-May 1982)
  • Scotland Jim McSherry (Aug 1982-Feb 1983)
  • England Christopher Hamlyn (Feb 1983-Oct 1985)
  • Scotland Jimmy Thomson (Nov 1987-Sep 1988)

References

External links

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Simple English

Berwick Rangers F.C.
Full nameBerwick Rangers Football Club
Founded1881
GroundShielfield Park,
Berwick-upon-Tweed
(Capacity 2,000)
ChairmanBrian Porteous
ManagerJimmy Crease
LeagueScottish Third Division
2008/09Scottish Third Division, 9th

Berwick Rangers F.C. is a football club which plays in Scotland.

References


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