The unique partnership between Rangers and Orange County SC began to bear fruit overnight, as the three Rangers representatives who have been sent on loan to the US club were included in the matchday squad for the first fixture of the USL Championship season.

The Gers’ partners welcomed El Paso Locomotiv FC to the Championship Soccer Stadium for the second tier opener.

Impressively, Cammy Palmer was named in the starting XI, while defensive duo Danny Finlayson and Matthew Shiels were included on the bench.

There was another familiar face in action, too, with former Gers centre-back, Rob Kiernan, earning a start following his move from Southend United.

Unfortunately, there was to be no opening day win for OCSC as the game finished 0-0, but Palmer got 72 minutes of action under his belt, before being substituted.

Palmer was one of three Rangers players named in the Orange County squad. (photo by Vagelis Georgariou/Action Plus via Getty Images)

Shiels and Finlayson watched on from the bench, but it’s perhaps unsurprising that they weren’t thrown into the action straight away.

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Shiels only made a handful of appearances for League One Dumbarton over the first half of the Scottish season, while this is Finlayson’s first venture into senior football.

In contrast, Palmer, who captained the Gers Reserves to the league title last season, is relatively more experienced, having turned out 20 times for Partick Thistle over the first half of the 2019/20 campaign.

Having arrived in the States a few weeks back, it would have been exciting for the trio to take things up a notch last night with their first experience of a USL Championship matchday.

There’s a significant gap until the next scheduled league game, against San Diego Loyal on 21 March, when all three players will no doubt be looking to contribute to a first league win of the season.

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