Rangers fans have called for a full investigation after a former youth footballer said he was sexually abused by a coach at the club.

The man claims he was abused in the Ibrox stadium by Gordon Neely, the head of youth development in the 1980s.

However, the alleged victim has been told by lawyers for Rangers that the duty of care is not with the current owners as the accusation relates to a time when the club was owned by a different company which is now in liquidation.

Claire Wallace, general secretary at the Rangers Supporters Association, said that, if the allegation is true, the club should contact the man and offer their support.

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“Matters of child abuse, cover-ups by individuals or organisations must be fully investigated through proper channels and dealt with by a court of law in the appropriate manner,” she said.

“If the report is accurate and this allegation is true Rangers Football Club should make direct contact with the victim and offer their full support.

“Regarding the statement of contacting the liquidator, I am sure any legal representative would have been acting appropriately.”

HeraldScotland: Ibrox Stadium

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Her comment came after the club sent an email sent to solicitors acting for the the alleged victim which said: “You will understand that there have been many changes affecting Rangers over the last several years.

“The company which owned Rangers Football Club … which you refer to as owing duties of care to your client will have been the company then called The Rangers Football Club plc and now called RFC 2012 Limited.

“That company is currently in liquidation but we do have the liquidators’ contact details and can provide that information if it will assist.”

Last year, allegations of abuse by Neely at various clubs were reported, but he died in 2014.

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He worked in youth development at Hibs in 1983 and then moved to a similar role at Rangers in 1986.

Police yesterday said there was no live investigation in connection with Neely and claims of abuse while he was at Rangers.

It is not clear whether Mr Neely, who worked at Rangers for more than three years after leaving Hibernian in 1986, has ever been subject of a police investigation.

An attempt through Freedom of Information to discover what action Police Scotland had taken over complaints relating to Mr Neely, who died of cancer in 2014, have previously been blocked.

The new accusation came to light as police across the country continue to probe allegations of historical sex abuse in football.

Rangers confirmed in December 2016 that Neely was sacked following an allegation of inappropriate behaviour towards a teenage player and the police were informed.

A Rangers statement in relation to the new allegation said that it  would "co-operate fully" with all those who had a "genuine interest" in seeking to protect children and "addressing the wrongs" of the past and that the Scottish FA and Police Scotland had been informed of the matter.

The club added: "It is vital matters are dealt with sensitively and with proper care and regard for those involved.

"We will not respond to questions that seek to turn allegations of desperate and deplorable conduct from three or more decades ago into cheap and nasty attacks on Rangers Football Club, and those of its employees who now have to attend to such difficult matters."

DCI Sarah Taylor, of the National Child Abuse Investigation Unit said: "Speaking out about any form of child abuse is incredibly difficult, and disclosures are often made many years after an incident took place. Police Scotland will listen to any such disclosure, regardless of the passage of time, and will investigate as well as work with partner organisations who have access to advocacy and support during the process of disclosure and investigation."