|Full name||Berwick Rangers Football Club|
|Nickname(s)||The Black & Gold, The Borderers, The Dream Team, The Wee Gers|
|Ground|| Shielfield Park,|
|Capacity||4,099 (1,366 seated)|
|2020–21||Lowland League, 10th of 17|
Berwick Rangers Football Club is a football team based in the town of Berwick-upon-Tweed, England, just south of the border with Scotland. Founded in 1881, they currently play in the Lowland League, the fifth tier of Scottish football, and were the only club from outside Scotland in the Scottish Professional Football League until their relegation in 2019. The club play at Shielfield Park, which has a capacity of just over 4,000.
Berwick Rangers was officially formed on 7 January 1881 after a match was played in the town between a team of millworkers from Dunbar and a team of railway clerks from Newcastle.For much of the club's history it was believed that they had formed in 1881, though recent research indicates that 1884 is the more likely date of formation. Their first competitive match was against another team from Berwick, 'The Royal Oaks' on 16 February 1884. Berwick Rangers won the match by "one goal to nil".
Berwick Rangers affiliated to the Scottish Football Association around 1905 and entered the Scottish Border League in 1905, followed by the Border Amateur League (1908–09). Recent research has revealed that the club joined the East of Scotland League immediately after the First World War, a new competition formed to replace the Borders League. The club made several attempts to join the North Northumberland League but were rebuffed. It was not until 1951 that they were admitted to Scottish Football League C Division (North & East). This third tier, made up largely of reserve sides, had been created in 1946 and was regionalised in 1949. The division was scrapped in 1955 and Berwick, along with the other non-reserve teams, were placed in an enlarged Division B (renamed Division Two the following season). Berwick Rangers have played in the Scottish football league system ever since, despite low attendances and frequent financial problems.
Following its foundation, the club had had a nomadic existence before eventually settling down at Shielfield Park in 1954.
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 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.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. The official website reported on 12 May 2008 that Camelon manager Allan McGonigal would take over as manager. He resigned from his post on 13 November 2008. His announcement came in the wake of a deal which saw a fan led consortium take control of the club. On 27 January the consortium concluded their deal to buy the club.
Following McGonigal's resignation Jimmy Crease became manager for the fourth time, initially as a caretaker, but then on a permanent basis in December 2008. – Fraser McLaren scoring in the 62nd minute of the game.Following a 4–0 defeat to Deveronvale in the second round of the 2011–12 Scottish Cup Crease stood down as manager. Player Ian Little was named caretaker manager until the end of 2011 when his position was to be reviewed. On 28 December 2011, Little was given the managers job at least until the end of the 2011–12 season. On 26 August 2012, Rangers FC played their first ever league game in England when they faced Berwick Rangers at Shielfield Park, in a repeat of their famous cup game in 1967. Berwick Rangers earned another famous result, with a 1–1 draw
On 12 January 2014, Berwick Rangers sacked manager Ian Little, with the club third bottom in Scottish League Two.A few days later Colin Cameron was appointed as the club's new player manager.
On 18 May 2019, Berwick Rangers became the second club after East Stirlingshire to be relegated out of the SPFL pyramid and into the Lowland Football League, after a 7–0 loss on aggregate to Highland League champions Cove Rangers.
Launched in December 2020, the Berwick Rangers Community Foundation was set up independent of the Football Club, but was aimed to work in active partnership with them, as well as with volunteers, supporters, stakeholders and residents. The foundation has the aim of encouraging sustainable participation in football, other sport and community wellbeing initiatives.
An experienced Board of trustees was led by the Chair, former Wee ‘Gers player, Warren Hawke, with founding members being Stuart Birkett, Sharon Buglass, Georgina Hill, George Mathison and Jim Telfer.
The foundation worked with Clan United to establish their visual identity, which represents a modernised homage to the Berwick Rangers Football Club crest. Within the logo, the Northumberland flag colours of yellow and red are pictured under the bear and wych tree.
Until relegation from the SPFL in 2019, Berwick Rangers were one of a handful of teams in the world to play in a national football league other than their own country's.
Berwick-upon-Tweed is 2+1⁄2 miles (4 km) south of the Scottish border and is closer to the Scottish capital Edinburgh than to Newcastle upon Tyne, the nearest major city on the English side of the border. The town had previously been part of Scotland and changed hands many times until finally taken by England in 1482. The club also formerly played in the East of Scotland League, which contains other nearby Borders teams, prior to joining the Scottish League.
There is also some controversy over the town's identity.Berwick's status as a club located in England led to the anomaly of them being the only team in the Scottish leagues who were subject to the implementation of the Taylor report following the Hillsborough disaster in 1989.
Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
Scottish League Division Two:
Scottish League Division Three :
East of Scotland League :
North Northumberland League :
Scottish Border League:
East of Scotland Shield :
Cove Rangers Football Club is a senior Scottish football club currently playing in Scottish League One. They are based in the Cove Bay area of Aberdeen and play their football at Balmoral Stadium, having left their former home at Allan Park in April 2015.
Shielfield Park is a football stadium that is home to Berwick Rangers and Berwick Bandits speedway team. Although Berwick Rangers is a Scottish Lowland Football League club, Shielfield Park is situated in the English county of Northumberland.
John Hughes is a Scottish professional football coach and former player.
John Coughlin is a football player and manager.
The 1966–67 season was the 94th season of competitive football in Scotland and the 70th season of Scottish league football.
The 1998–99 season was the 102nd season of Scottish league football.
The 2007–08 season was the 111th season of competitive football in Scotland.
The 2007–08 Scottish Football League Third Division was the 13th season in the format of ten teams in the fourth-tier of Scottish football. The season started on 4 August 2007 and ended on 26 April 2008. East Fife F.C. finished top and were promoted alongside Arbroath F.C. as play-off winners. Stranraer F.C. were also promoted due to Gretna being demoted to the Third Division.
John Brownlie is a Scottish former football player and coach, currently assistant manager of East Stirlingshire.
The 2008–09 Scottish Football League Third Division was the 14th season in the format of ten teams in the fourth-tier of Scottish football. The season started on 2 August 2008 and ended on 9 May 2009. Dumbarton F.C. finished top and were promoted alongside Stenhousemuir F.C. as play-off winners. Cowdenbeath F.C. were also promoted due to Livingston being demoted to the Third Division.
James Crease is a Scottish football manager and former player.
The 2011–12 season was Berwick Rangers's seventh consecutive season in the Scottish Third Division, having been relegated from the Scottish Second Division at the end of the 2004–05 season. Berwick also competed in the Challenge Cup, League Cup and Scottish Cup.
Ian Little is a former Scottish football player and coach.
The 2012–13 Scottish Football League Second Division was the 18th season in the current format of 10 teams in the third-tier of Scottish football. Cowdenbeath were the current champions.
The Scottish Lowland Football League is a senior football league based in central and southern Scotland. The league sits at level 5 on the Scottish football league system, acting as a feeder to the Scottish Professional Football League, and is above three regional leagues at level 6.
The 2015–16 Scottish League Two was the 21st season in the current format of 10 teams in the fourth-tier of Scottish football. The last placed team entered a play-off with a team nominated by the Scottish Football Association from outside the SPFL to determine which team enters League Two in the 2016–17 season.
The 2017–18 Scottish League Two was the 23rd season in the current format of 10 teams in the fourth-tier of Scottish football. The last placed team entered a play-off with a team nominated by the Scottish Football Association from outside the SPFL determining which team enters League Two in the 2018–19 season. The fixtures were published on 23 June 2017.
The 2018–19 Scottish Premiership was the sixth season of the Scottish Premiership, the highest division of Scottish football. The fixtures were published on 15 June 2018 and the season began on 4 August 2018.
The 2018–19 Scottish League Two was the 24th season in the current format of 10 teams in the fourth-tier of Scottish football. The fixtures were published on 15 June 2018 and the season began on 4 August 2018.
The 2019–20 season was the 123rd season of competitive football in Scotland. The domestic season began on 12 July 2019, with the first round of matches in the 2019–20 Scottish League Cup. The 2019–20 Scottish Professional Football League season started on 2 August 2019.
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