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Inside FutbolInside Futbol

04/06/2020 - 08:51 BST

Rangers Debut Made Me Feel 18 Again – Former Ger


Former Northern Ireland international Gareth McAuley has revealed that making his debut at 38 years old for his boyhood club Rangers made him feel like he was 18 again.

McAuley’s career spanned 23 years, with over 600 games for club and country; he began his professional career in Northern Ireland with Linfield and played his final season at Rangers in 2018/19.  


The former West Brom centre-back made his debut for Northern Ireland in June 2005 and went on to win 80 international caps, scoring nine goals.

However, the 40-year-old has revealed he considers himself to be very lucky to have had the opportunity to sign for the Gers and further added that although he was 38 when he made his debut, getting the chance to play for his boyhood club made him feel like he was a teenager again.

McAuley told Rangers’ official site: “Making my Premier League debut was special but playing for Rangers is right up there too. Pulling on the blue jersey was incredible and I’m very proud to have done that.

“To have had that chance for a few months was something I’m not even sure I know how to describe.

“It was a real honour and although I made my debut at 38, at the time I felt giddy and like I was about 18 again." 

He admits that when the exit door at West Brom loomed into view and he heard Rangers were a possible destination, his mind was made up.

“When I was leaving West Brom, I had heard there was a chance to go to Rangers and there might even have been a chance to sign the January before that.

“It was the only place I wanted to go. Growing up as a supporter of the club and given everything which goes with that, it was hugely appealing.”

McAuley ended his time at Ibrox having turned out in a light blue shirt on ten occasions, including two outings in the Europa League, against Spartak Moscow and Rapid Vienna, respectively.