A veteran journalist has launched a new unofficial book detailing the connection of Rangers to the Northern Irish province of Ulster.

The book, aptly named Rangers Football Club: The Ulster Connection, looks at the role of 32 Ulstermen in the history of the famous Glasgow Rangers. It has been penned by Ulster-Scots historian/journalist Billy Kennedy.

From the region’s links to club founders Peter and Moses McNeil to former club captain Steven Davis, the club looks at the role of these proud Ulsterman in the progress, success and identity of the club.

Kyle Lafferty and Steven Davis are two Ulstermen with long associations to the club. (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

Ulster continues to play a significant part in Rangers’ past, present and future. The club’s first team currently has three legendary Northern Irish internationals in it – Gareth McAuley, Kyle Lafferty and Steven Davis.

Rangers Ulster fanbase is also worthy of mention

In Kennedy’s book, he also looks at the 60 or so Rangers Supporters Clubs in the region. Rangers and Northern Ireland have always had a special connection and continue to do so.

 

Discussing those that regularly come from across the water, Kennedy speaks with great pride. And it’s no wonder.

“The loyalty and dedication shown to Rangers by the huge Ulster fan base manifests itself by long bus and ferry journeys of up to 18 hours for supporters, many from rural parts of Northern Ireland to what they see as the ‘Shrine’ at Edmiston Drive/Copland Road in south-west Glasgow,” said Kennedy [as quoted by The Newsletter].

The Northern Irish contingent in the Rangers support is amongst some of the most passionate. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Poignantly, Kennedy looks at their continued dedication with quiet awe. “For a great many Ulster men and women,” Kennedy explains, “the regular trek across the North Channel to see the Glasgow Rangers has become a way of life.”

Rangers Northern Irish connection looks set to strengthen next season too. Could the latest Ulsterman set to join the ranks of Ibrox prove to be one of the most successful yet?

Rangers: The Ulster Connection is available from all good bookshops, £14.99 hardback, £9.99 paperback

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