Rangers gained the prestigious honor of representing Hong Kong in the annual Interport Cup, going against perennial Chinese Premiership powerhouse Shanghai Shenxua. Against a much stronger opponent, Rangers played out of their skin and came out with a spirited 0-1 defeat but gained the respect and admiration by many members of the mainland Chinese media.
After a very strong start in the league campaign, Rangers finished the season in the 3rd spot in the league table.
Atmosphere in the Rangers family was somber throughout the whole season as club captain and Hong Kong International Cheung Yiu-Lun was tragically killed in a traffic accident during the season.
Players such as Ho Chi-Wing and Brazilian forward Anilton also suffered career-ending injuries and had to end their respective careers in pre-mature manners during the season.
At the same time, all the disappointments finally took a toll on the team and saw a few Rangers players getting into a brawl with their league opponents during an away league match in China.
However, a new wave of young, talented local players such as speedy winger Yip Chi-Ho, physical midfielder Lo Kwan-Yee and the tricky Lam Ka-Wai all took a further step in their respective maturation processes.
Signing a new sponsorship agreement with Swiss watch giant Buler, the club decided to switch its name to Buler Rangers for the next few seasons.
The season was a financial disaster for the club as the club was forced to go through the whole season in an extremely tight budget (HKD $1 Million).
Unexpectedly, with players accepting a roll-back in salaries, they also displayed great determination and hunger. Eventually, against all odds, Rangers miraculously overcame the relegation trap and proudly survived the season with limited financial resource.
During the course of the season, several players who were deemed washed-up and over-the-top also re-launched their careers through excellent displays and characters. At the same time, a group of youngsters never got timid by the difficult challenges and displayed the youthful brash that saw some of them maturing into excellent professional prospects.
Midfielder Lo Kwan-Yee was the talk of the season and broke the record for the youngest scorer in a local First Division match when he netted a game-winner for the club at the tender age of 15.
Finances finally dried up for this once-proud club in the next few seasons but Rangers merely dealt with the situation by re-focusing on their strong youth policy.
In return, the club produced numerous young players who went on and represented Hong Kong in the Olympic Qualifiers.
With new investors and strong financial backing, Rangers became a big spender at the start of the 1993 season and started several memorable bidding wars for quality players. The big-spending approach brought Rangers instant results as the club achieved the “Double” by taking the Silver Shield and the FA Cup honors.
Current Director Mr. Philip Lee took over the club in the Third Division at the start of the season and the club finally reached the First Division once again in 1992.
After three years of absence, Mr. Petrie came back to the Hong Kong football scene with the determination to bring Rangers back to its former glory. Going against the odds, the club finally returned to the First Division circuit but financial issues forced the club founder to sell his shares to local business tycoon Yeung Sau-Sing.
The new leadership invested huge amounts into the club for the first few seasons. However, the club’s performance started to fade and eventually got relegated in 1986, this time hitting the Third Division before finally finding its feet.
The 70s era was a time that both, Rangers and Mr. Petrie, really left their marks in the local football circuit as the later became the first person in Hong Kong to recruit foreign players from abroad. Derrick Currie, one of the very first foreign players ever to play professionally in Hong Kong, went on to become a household name for both Rangers fans and the rest of the local supporters.?The club won more honors during the mid-70s but with players leaving for better contracts and offers, a weakened Rangers side finally succumbed to the dreadful relegation battle in 1977 and the club hit a low point when Mr. Petrie decided to return to Scotland after the season.
Rangers Football Club started to first participate in the youth league matches organized by the Hong Kong Football Association in 1958. Gradually but surely, the club made its First Division debit in 1965 and took home the Silver Shield trophy on its first attempt.
Mr. Ian Petrie, a proud Scotsman who founded the Hong Kong Rangers Football Club was an influential figure in the local football scene as he was the first person to bring in quality import players over to the Far East. Jackie Traynor and Derrick Currie were two prominent names for the local supporters just to name a few.
Along the way, Mr. Petrie also made it a big priority to invest in the club’s youth system that in return, produced a lot of fine local talents for the club. The likes of Kwok Ka-Ming, Lai Sun-Cheung and Jimmy Chu are just a few youngsters that Mr. Petrie spotted and eventually represented Hong Kong in various international competitions.