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  1. It’s Not What You Say, But What They Hear I made a mistake last Sunday. In a pique of frustration over the inevitability of much of Saturday night’s events and annoyance over some of the coverage it garnered, I sent a Tweet. As Tweets go it was quite long, and was an attempt to remind people that Rangers supporter’s who fight police officers, or themselves, on a Saturday night in town are no more representative of me, or the vast majority of our support, than the Rangers supporter’s who went bird watching, long distancing running or line dancing are. I wish I hadn’t. I’m not a prolific Tweeter and I rarely Tweet about football. If you want occasional photos of my local park, perhaps some obscure research on birds or the occasional insight into international events, maybe I’m your guy, otherwise best ignore me, I’m there to learn, not teach. Prior to Sunday I doubt I’ve ever sent a Tweet that was ‘liked’ more the a dozen times; I’m not interesting or high profile, and I’m okay with that. An hour or so after pressing ‘Tweet’ I was very surprised to learn over 100 people had liked, retweeted or positively commented on it. Almost all seemed to be fellow Rangers fans who had clearly been feeling something similar. This continued for a few hours, numbers increased and my phone battery complained. A couple of friends texted me to say they’d read it and enjoyed it, even my sister, who I didn’t know even had Twitter, called to mock me. All good so far. Then, sometime around mid-afternoon on Sunday, supporter's of the second best side in Glasgow came across my Tweet. The comments changed. I’ve not read them all, there are simply too many and life is too short, but I got the general gist and some clear themes emerged. My claim that it was a “minority” of Rangers supporters who were involved in any disorder on Saturday was widely ridiculed. Also, I’d failed to mention sectarianism, or “anti-Irish racism” as many seemed to call it. Lastly, that drunken, loutish behaviour is recurring and unique to Rangers supporters. The ‘minority’ issue is easily dealt with. I think it’s fair to say Rangers have somewhere around 500,000 supporters. It might be more than that, it might be less, but I think it’s a conservative estimate to suggest that 10% of the population of Scotland would describe themselves as supporter’s of Rangers. Some of them might be nominal, a club they followed as a child but take less interest now, others will attend every match, home and away. The only definition of a Rangers supporter I accept is that they want Rangers to win. Estimates of the total crowd numbers at Ibrox and later in the city centre vary, somewhere between 10,000 and 20,000. 20,000 people is barely 4% of our support, and it’s worth remembering that Chief Supt Mark Sutherland of Police Scotland described that crowd as “largely peaceful in nature”. Even if someone wants to complain that everyone present was breaking Covid guidelines and so at least technically in breach of restrictions, it doesn’t change the fact that the other 96% of the Rangers support weren’t. As for those who actually engaged in vandalism and violence that was a very small percentage of those present and a tiny fraction of the Rangers support. For me those are simply irrefutable facts. I don’t know what ‘anti-Irish racism’ is. As far as I know the Irish and the Scots are the same race. Having lived in both I can also say that in my experience we’re largely identical in almost every measurable way. I’m unaware of any systemic discrimination towards Irish people in Scotland, certainly not in this century at least. I didn’t mention sectarianism as I was unaware of any taking place. I wasn’t there, and I’ve not watched many of the videos that have been circulating. If there was sectarian singing or chanting then I condemn it. The anti-Catholic chants and songs still exist among a section of our support, and, away from the stadium and often after a few drinks they sometimes make an appearance. I wish they didn’t. I expect our board wish they didn’t and I can only imagine what some of our players must think. It’s embarrassing. It would be disingenuous to say nothing has changed in this regard over the years, but it would be equally wrong to say this has disappeared, it hasn’t. I can understand why someone who feels these chants are directed at them reacts with fury when they hear them. That said it surprises me to see how many people liberally sprinkle the word ‘hun’ around their timelines when questioning my views. The refrain, when challenged, seems to be that the word isn’t sectarian and isn’t an idiom for ‘Protestant’. A ‘hun’ apparently is a Rangers supporter. Unless it’s a Hearts supporter. Or maybe an Airdrie supporter, and sometimes even a Morton or Kilmarnock supporter. This is the thing about the English language, the meaning of words changes over time and between people. My children regularly describe something positive as ‘sick’, this puzzles me and makes me feel old at the same time. The meaning of the word ‘sick’ has changed. I took a trip to Belfast before Covid hit. It’s a city I know quite well having lived there for a while a few decades ago, but it’s also a city that’s going through such huge change that parts of it were unrecognisable to me. I decided to do the first time visitor thing and take a bus tour to reacquaint myself. The Belfast bus tour takes you to places that are famous and infamous. It doesn’t hide its past, you see the city warts and all. We visited various ‘interfaces’. An interface is a euphemism for a border, in Belfast that’s where a republican area meets a loyalist area. These are bleak, people-less areas, dominated by high fences and walls, where territory is clearly marked by graffiti. Much of this graffiti is sadly familiar to a Glaswegian and I’d little trouble understanding just whose territory we were leaving or entering. Something unfamiliar did catch my eye though, 3 letters that made a regular appearance as you entered loyalist areas; KAT, and 3 similar ones when you entered republican areas; KAH. The tour guide explained that KAT stands for ‘Kill All Taigs’ and KAH stands for ‘Kill All Huns’. On the streets of working class Belfast it seems that Taigs are Catholics and Huns are Protestants. Not unsurprisingly I’ve recently started to notice these initials in Glasgow too. Now I’m willing to accept that not everyone who uses the word ‘hun’ does mean all Protestants, but that doesn’t mean it’s not what I hear when it’s said. And while some might not use it that way, others clearly do. Meanings change, it’s all of our jobs to keep up with that change, not just Rangers supporters. Lastly, why is it always Rangers? This takes us directly into ‘whataboutery’ country again and I’ve little desire to spend more time there. Suffice to say that over the years I’ve seen violence, first hand, sometimes at very close quarters, perpetrated by supporters of Aberdeen, Dundee, Motherwell, Airdrie, Kilmarnock, Morton, Clydebank, Partick Thistle, Hibs, Hearts, Falkirk, Clyde, St Mirren, Sunderland, Glentoran, Linfield, Cliftonville and, believe it or not, Celtic. Rangers don’t have a monopoly on bams, but I’m not going to pretend we don’t have any either. That there was disorder on Saturday night didn’t come as a surprise to me. I’ve lived in Glasgow long enough to know that there are people in our society for who a Saturday spent drinking will greatly increase the likelihood of them being involved in violence. That hard drinking ‘get mad wae it’ culture is alive and flourishing among a section of our society. I don’t think the blame for that can be laid at the door of Rangers directors, players or indeed me. The Scottish Crime Survey of 2018 recorded that 46% of all violent crime in Scotland is alcohol related. 41% of all prisoners in Scotland report being drunk at the time of their offence, that figure rises to 60% for young offenders. The STAG Trauma Report in 2015 records that alcohol was associated with 33% of all major trauma patients, that number doubles when just recording male patients. Alcohol related death is 7 times higher in Scotland’s most deprived areas and alcohol related hospital stays are 8 times higher in Scotland’s poorest communities. Again, the figures are higher for men than woman. Despite this I’ve yet to read anyone ask what Smirnoff, Buckfast or the makers of MD 20-20 had to say about last Saturday night, far less suggest that everyone who drinks alcohol should be ashamed of themselves and demand action be taken. Rangers draw their support from across Scotland and beyond, but the post industrial heartlands of the central belt are where we draw the bulk of our support. These areas have more than their fare share of economic black spots and deprived communities. None of that is an excuse for violence or religious intolerance. Indeed the majority of people brought up in these areas aren’t violent or bigoted. But the power to change the people who are, to improve their schools, to broaden their horizons, to perhaps give them ambitions beyond the weekend, to deal with whatever demons they currently try and drown and to instil a pride or self worth clearly lacking in some of them doesn’t lie with Steven Gerrard or the Rangers board. It lies, quite squarely, at the feet of those elected to represent these communities; politicians. That’s ironic, because some of them have been very quick to point fingers of responsibility elsewhere this week. It does feel that some people see Rangers as responsible for the actions of everyone who supports them at all times. There were 54 arrests and 429 crimes at T In The Park a few years ago yet no one suggests The Stone Roses are held responsible for that. There is a limit on what the club can do and should be held responsible for. I’m surprised that even needs stated. But then maybe I shouldn’t be surprised, it’s strange that now we have so many ways of communicating with each other more than ever people still only hear what they want to hear.
    18 points
  2. The big point here is how Rangers are exposing the SPFL how corrupt & incompetent they are, the other big thing here is how/why all the other clubs are terrified of challenging the bias corrupt cabal!!, Scottish football is fucked and has been since the attempt to kill Rangers and the witch hunt continues on Rangers. Since the day Rangers were voted out of the top division Scottish football was fucked, the only thing I kept saying is we need to start winning again, being successful, this is the only way we can change things! I still believe that, we have made astonishing progress under SG and that is killing all the Rangers hating Scottish clubs and Scottish gutter press!. Rangers FC just need to keep on winning, the more success we have the stronger we will be and the more pressure we can apply to the corruption that is rife in Scottish football and indeed Scotland including the Scottish gutter press. It is a wonderful time to be a Rangers fan, especially after what we have had to endure these last 10 years or so. Just keep being successful Rangers.
    14 points
  3. Kent's tracking back with McGregor and generally being around him and preventing him getting on the ball was hugely important for us yesterday. Tactically Callum McGregor is their link between defence and attack and Kent had a job to do today in helping prevent that, he did it well in my opinion. We really should step back for a moment and consider our side yesterday. I think it's now clear we've had Covid problems at the club for a while and it's affecting a number of players and senior staff in different ways. Barasic is not fit, I don't know why, but he's not and that's been clear every time he's played this season. He was rightly replaced by Bassey a few weeks ago. Yet he was called upon to perform yesterday and he did. Their young winger is a decent enough player and they were overlapping a lot on that side, Barasic had a lot to do yesterday. It also seems like Helander is a player who struggles to play two matches a week. There seem to be fitness issues with him, he may have historical injuries that need managed, he might simply not yet be over his summer exertions. Yesterday was his second game in 4 days, with nearly 7,000 miles flying too. Balogun is no right back. He might have played there before but compared to Tav or Paterson he's defensively sound but offers a lot less going forward. So much of our attacking play is dependent on our full backs linking with midfielders and forwards and delivering crosses. An unfit Barasic and a centre half at right back makes a big difference to our style of play. Add in a rookie keeper making his league debut for us rather than a commanding seasoned international and you have to say to go through that match without conceding a goal is remarkable. As has been said Kent and Roofe aren't fully fit. Both did important jobs yesterday. Kamara, Davis, Morelos and Aribo played in the heat of Thursday too. Morelos ability to draw a foul is a thing of beauty, he should have a wing dedicated to him in Kelvingrove Art Gallery where future generations can marvel at his dedication to getting his body between their centre halves and the ball before taking the inevitable dunt from behind. He helped break up the play, slow the game down at times and allow us to regroup. Plus we realised they were suspect from set-pieces as indeed it turned out. We'd no defenders on our bench yesterday. No manager in the dug out, no captain on the park. That was an important win yesterday, that was a show character above all else. Loved it.
    13 points
  4. Presentation Over Content? I have attended a few dozen Club AGMs over the decades. Mostly, I have departed the venue thinking the event was a triumph of presentation over content; particularly during David Murray's tenure. Yesterday, I sat in the Auditorium accompanied by a calmness. The ambient blue light occasionally reflecting the lustre of the SPFL trophy. Pre-event, the lobby whispers were low and the sipped tea served to sharpen appetites for a Presentation confirming our return. The Hall was two thirds full, the empty seats were filled with contentment. The Blazers at the top table are largely the same as us, born and bred Rangers supporters. That's the end of the cheese, Rangers supporters have demands. The AGM began with a 10 minute video presentation of last season's Premiership goals. Next up was the the Company Secretary, James Blair. He introduced the Board and attending Advisors. He then ran through proposals, re-elections and, voting procedure. He handed over to Club Chair, Douglas Park who welcomed all and noted the attendance of the Premiership trophy. Managing Director, Stewart Robertson gave a short summation of the last year and current situation. He introduced Gio van Bronkhurst to loud acclaim. The next twenty-five minutes were taken up by Nick Thomson inviting Stewart Robertson, Ross Wilson and, James Bisgrove to sit beside the Premiership trophy stage left. The settee and lounge chair were filled and a relaxed discussion ensued reference Club finance, marketing and commercial activity, European Coefficient, Pitch, training ground and, contracts. Each were quietly, matter of fact impressive. Robertson emphasised the Club's Euro progress from 216th position to 41st. Further, the Club had contributed considerably in taking the National Euro position to ninth. Bisgrove extrapolated on the kit deal being worth £7-£9 million next year and Commercial activity growing up to £27 million as a new normal. Further, he claimed Rangers TV's revenue had grown 100%. Wilson talked about Gerrard's departure and claimed to be ready for it, van Bronkhurst's appointment within the week would suggest he was on the front foot. Robertson addressed the £7.5 million needed to finish the season, already raised and expects a small end of season profit. Nitty gritty issues ensued, all lifts at the Stadium were being renewed at the cost of £1 million. The kitchens catering for in excess of 2,000 hospitality customers were over 25 years old and along with all Stadium toilets would be replaced next. Academy has been improved, new Coaches appointed. Medical and Sports Science improved too, brought up to English Premiership standard. The women and girls side of operations has been made full time professional, it's important not an exercise in box ticking. Robertson finished with an update on New Edmiston House. The metal framework is currently being raised, and a new Manager, David Pyatt has been appointed to ensure it opens Autumn'22. The space will be big enough to host AGMs, Concerts, Dinners, functions, ..... etc. There will be a Museum and a two tier retail outlet. On match days, it will be the basis for a family match day zone. The current club shop will be converted into a Sports Bar and again be part of the FanZone plan. Bisgrove ended with notes on Club Partnerships, £3 million this year, will be a comfortable £7 million next year and, still room for growth. Wilson expanded upon Contracts, relaxed about reviewing older player contracts at the end of the season, non contributors will be allowed to leave and, there is a set wage structure that will NOT be broken. James Blair then moved the AGM to questions from the floor, there were more than a dozen but I will concentrate on the four most important. George Hoggin on a Club'72 proxy asked about loans secured against the Edmiston Club and rate of interest? John Bennet answered - £13 million in new loans secured at 6%, we were paying Dave King 8% and, others have offered between 9% and 13%(these have not been taken up) because the 6% coupon is now the benchmark. The Board have driven down the cost of funding. Eddie Simpson representing the Blind Party made two points, firstly because of Covid the Party has been moved from behind the dug-outs and has been subsequently separated. Secondly, the Blind Party no longer received Away tickets. Robertson promised a solution would be found for the first but the second was dependent upon away clubs. The Rangers Blind Party emanates from Bill Struth's time as an Officer in the RAMC, his decade of rehabilitation work with veterans after WW1 included introduction of Blind Party Commentators. The Blind Party are a much valued part of the Rangers Family, every accommodation should be made. David Ferguson asked about the Ticket Office, pointed out it was often closed and most queries go unanswered. Robertson accepted it was verging on shambolic and a new Customer Service Manager with improved accompanying software was necessary immediately. Stated it was now a priority. Charlie Murray from Linwood made the most heartfelt plea. He related the experience of being a disabled Rangers fan, the facilities are disgraceful, sight lines appalling, positions open to the elements, if rain is predicted some do not trap due to flooding, ..................... finished by stating, "I made the very same complaint three years ago". Robertson accepted all points, Park intervened stating the issue had been widely discussed ay yesterday's Board meeting. An assurance was given, necessary improvements will be made soonest. The facilities for disabled Rangers supporters should be the best in the world, they are fellow Rangers supporters and most deserving. Time for the fans in the Stands to grasp this nettle, starting Saturday. There was a final question from an anonymous chap grabbing the mike. He made the point Rangers are held to a different standard by the general media and had a pop at Humza, James Dornan and, Susan Aitken. All perpetrators in, 'tell a lie often enough' -this brought a reply from David Graham, "all we want is balance and fairness, we take a long term approach, more scalpel than chainsaw". The AGM concluded.
    12 points
  5. 11 points
  6. Racist Encounters in Scottish Football(Part 1). I cannot imagine my upbringing in deepest, darkest Lanarkshire in the 60s and early 70s differed much from anyone else in Scotland in those times. We are all products of our conditioning. I attended a village primary school, and only three of the school roll did not share the pigmentation of my skin. A pair of Hindu twins, who also attended Cubs with me, were present for a couple of years before being whisked off to private school. The third lad was a couple of years below, he was of African origin and adopted by white parents through the auspices of the church. Mostly, we called him "Davy". I have recounted my Amateur footballing experiences back in the day, and Davy's participation was a law of diminishing returns. He was a more than decent footballer but every time he stepped on to the pitch, the racism was overwhelming. At Fir Park Boys' Club, a Coach inquired, "where's Davy"? A couple of hands were raised, the Coach looked and said, "naw, Davy the Darkie"! I became aware that unmeant casual racism was just as hurtful. Davy was a big Rangers supporter and a regular attendee at Ibrox with both his old man and our grouping. Davy loved Dave Smith Celtic had an effective winger at the time, Paul Wilson a player of mixed parentage. I don't want to stray into Meghan Markle territory, but Wilson had a sallow complexion We Rangers fans sung a song of homage, "I'd rather be a Darkie than a Tim". It was a cause of great hilarity on the terrace steps, when our grouping, including Davy belted out the ditty. Davy sang it liked he meant it; there must have been comfort in the acceptance. Black players of the time, were Pele and Eusabio. Nearer home, the only black guy regular turning out was West Ham's Clyde Best. Davy received the comparisons, but he had a good line, "I prefer George". I am not excusing the racism existing at that time, I am recounting the times. Education is the thing, tertiary education focused my mind. The music I adored was Southern Soul, my heroes were Otis Redding, Al Green, Ann Peebles, .... etc. Davy's fave rave was the Average White Band and we attended a few of the Mighty Whities gigs together. The last time I socialised with Davy was at Ibrox for the final of the Tennent Caledonian Cup against West Bromwich Albion. It concluded with a deserving 0-2 for the Baggies and the majority of the 65,000 crowd applauded them from the pitch. Ron Atkinson had assemble a hell of a team, Batson, Cunningham, and, Regis were the epitome of speed and balance. Throw in Robson, Wullie Johnston and, Ally Robertson and you had Britain's first genuine multi-racial talented team. At that time, our preferred place at Ibrox was the far end of the West Enclosure. It was a tad higher and provided a most decent view down the ground. A dozen of us, late teens to early twenties were in early and had a great view of dozens of our fellow Bears racially abusing West Brom's black players. It was all verbal, but appalling. I would like to say we confronted some of those screaming abuse, but we didn't. A few of us apologised to Davy, he shrugged his shoulders and offered, "average white guy behaviour". I felt small and decided to be a better man. Early in my Army career, I received a letter from my Mother, it was a few weeks in arriving as I was attending the Army Jungle School in Borneo. It told of Davy's suicide. Initially, my concern was my own discomfort. A few months later, I was participating for several weeks in one of those huge mobilisation exercises in West Germany. Those exercises ran on their own timings, usually a couple of hours ahead of local time, called, 'Zulu Time'. I was asked the time by a black Sergeant and I replied, "Zulu time"? I spent a few minutes profusely apologising and explained about Davy. He laughed and told me to calm down and explained the phonetic alphabet. I returned home on leave and met Davy's old man walking the family dog. There were tears and I was told the member of the family/community that missed Davy most, was the family dog because she could not see colour. Part 2 will begin on another period of leave, New Years 1988 and Rangers announced the signing from Aston Villa of Mark Walters.
    11 points
  7. Brilliant stuff from Andy - well worth a read! Saturday brought the emotions to fore; bubbling and frothing underneath the surface which was struggling to contain the result of a decade of trials and tribulations. The phenomenal welcome, Gerrard’s journey through the sea of passion, the victory that brought us to the brink of history and the dressing room celebrations that ensued. It had everything. It was everything. The fact that our march to the title had been a lengthy procession that we could only have dreamed of at the start of the campaign did not prepare our supporters for the moment where we stood on the precipice of history. Hearts started to pound, stomachs started to churn and from somewhere deep within a valve was opened on the sounding of the final whistle at Tannadice that released the kind of joy and jubilation that I’m not sure we’ll ever experience again. Rangers is not just a football club; for many it is a way of life. We live it, we breathe it. We stood fifty-thousand strong in the fourth-tier of Scottish football while our club was on its knees in the hope that we could one day witness the crowning moment when ‘the journey’ was finally over and Rangers were back, standing tall as Scotland’s premier football club once more. The celebrations that ensued therefore were as inevitable as the opportunistic, blinkered and dishonest political outcry that followed them. Let me be clear, the breaking of lockdown regulations was wrong. Some of the scenes in George Square were wrong. What is also wrong however is holding one portion of society to a different standard than the rest. In Scotland however this seems to be par for the course. Politicians responsible for the safety and health of the country are quite correct to criticise public celebrations in the midst of a pandemic. Anything less would be a dereliction of duty. What politicians cannot do however is apply their criticism inconsistently, abdicate responsibility, shift the blame and attempt to use the weekend as a deflection from the many ongoing inquiries and scandals in which the current SNP Government finds itself embroiled. Nicola Sturgeon was quick to urge fans to go home on Sunday following the celebratory gatherings which were forming in Glasgow. Fair enough. But clearly her followers were not satisfied with her response which she was later forced to follow up with an angrier, more forceful tweet which turned her ire onto Rangers Football Club itself. This change of tack is an important one which would continue and is the focus of the dismay felt by our fans. The next day Deputy First Minister John Swinney, who is due to face a vote of no confidence in Holyrood this week, used his coronavirus daily briefing to continue this attack on the “lack of leadership” from Rangers and said that the club’s “silence was deafening”. At this point it is probably important to note that Mr Swinney is the MSP for Perthshire North and a supporter of St Johnstone Football Club. The Deputy FM was quick to congratulate his team on their recent cup success however seemed to lose his voice when it came to criticising his fellow fans for breaking the same lockdown regulations to celebrate their victory, celebrations which resulted in injury to a steward and police officer in his own constituency. What was he saying about silence being deafening? This type of selective outcry of course was not limited to the Education Secretary as during Nicola’s Sturgeon’s weekly address to parliament Patrick Harvie, co-leader of the Scottish Greens, decided to go one step further. Not only did Harvie join in the condemnation of the scenes but he went above and beyond and asked whether Rangers Football Club should be shut down as a result. Yes, shut down. Really. It seems therefore that as well as trying to win titles and trophies Rangers are now apparently responsible for maintaining public order in and around Glasgow. To even suggest that a football club be accountable for fans gathering in other areas of the city is as ludicrous as it is moronic. In line with Mr Swinney this of course only seems to apply to one club in the country, unless of course Patrick can point me in the direction of his question in parliament asking the same of Celtic or others following fans’ blatant breach of restrictions earlier in the season. These were not of small scale given the violence and injury to police officers and, while fan actions were condemned, the political focus was never directed at the club(s). Until now. We’re not finished yet. Harvie – who shamefully lied in parliament about Rangers doing nothing to prevent these gatherings – had his dishonesty matched by the embattled First Minister who proceeded to say that Rangers did not urge fans to disperse and go home, despite STV’s Twitter feed posting a video of the announcements which she claims did not exist. There is of course a good chance that she was simply unable to recollect or recall this. It seems to be a common problem these days for the FM. The unique accountability levels expected of only one club in the country did not only emanate from our devolved parliament. The politically motivated high heid-yins at Police Scotland saddled up and leapt enthusiastically onto the bandwagon and “condemned” Rangers over an alleged lack of support, particularly on messaging. This of course despite the fact that our high-profile manager publicly repeated the need for fans to stay safe and be responsible in his pre-match press conference on Friday. The police have also acknowledged that they are powerless to prevent such gatherings from occurring and that the focus is on maintaining peace and safety rather than wading in to disperse crowds. What then makes them think that if the police force – yes, the police force – cannot prevent gatherings from taking place that a comment from a football club will suddenly make them disappear. Could Rangers have done more? In a word – yes. Would it have made the slightest bit of difference? Certainly not. If the seriousness of a pandemic does not dissuade people from breaching lockdown restrictions then a tweet isn’t going to tilt those scales. We are therefore stuck arguing in the superficial, condemning things for appearances sake and in full knowledge that the events that occurred would have happened regardless. It is why we saw mass gatherings as Leeds United won promotion and when Liverpool won the Premier League. Both clubs of course were spared from the type of political treatment we have received. But the furore we have witnessed this week is the type of arse-covering, deflection tactic that has become all too familiar and perhaps it is time that those throwing stones looked inwardly first. Douglas Park was not found wanting. In an open letter to the First Minister he outlined the steps taken by the institution of which he is chairman including initiating contact with the Scottish Government, the local MP, the Justice Secretary, the SPFL and Police Scotland in addition to a timeline for these discussions. He goes on to highlight that the club did not want to be arrogant or disrespectful to our opponents in our pre-match communications and says this was acknowledged by both Police Scotland and the government. Park also claims that on the 6th March the club agreed a ‘form of words’ with the authorities but that our Celtic-supporting Justice Minister, Humza Yousaf, did not follow up as indicated. Perhaps Park’s most serious criticism however was reserved for the forgetful First Minister. Nicola Sturgeon is the MSP for Glasgow Southside and therefore Ibrox and Rangers Football Club are within her own constituency. The fact that she did not directly engage with the club, one of the largest employers in her area, on an issue which she clearly deems as being incredibly serious, Park states, shows her own “lack of leadership” and is a “dereliction of duty”. And he’s not wrong. The hypocrisy of the accusations hurled at Rangers are nothing short of staggering given the above, not that we should be surprised by any of this. In December we had one group of fans congregating, protesting, throwing missiles at their team and injuring police officers in the process. Their club was not condemned. Their club was not pilloried in parliament. Their club was not told to do more by the police. And now that same group of fans are proactively planning a gathering at their stadium to “defend” it on the day of the Old Firm clash later this month. Quelle surprise. If we are to apply the same logic to other scenarios then it stands to reason that surely Celtic Football Club were responsible for their ultra supporters group – the Green Brigade – attending a political protest in George Square last year and having to be “kettled” and marched home by police. Surely the club should have done more to prevent this attendance and behaviour from occurring? Of course, that’s nonsense. And so too is the ludicrous and inconsistent pillorying of Rangers FC. Douglas Park may well want to follow up on the lies told in parliament by Patrick Harvie and Nicola Sturgeon for accountability works both ways. Such dishonesty from elected politicians and in such a setting, particularly given the blinkered nature of its occurrence, should not remain unchallenged. Maybe we will receive a reply to our complaint before Stewart Robertson’s letter of 8th December is answered by our constituency MSP, or perhaps she will continue to treat one of the largest businesses in her area with the same disdain she has consistently shown us over the years. Maybe once these charlatans stop telling lies about us, we can stop telling the truth about them. Moreover, if and when the next Scottish Parliament election, scheduled for this May, takes place - remember this moment when you make your vote.
    11 points
  8. Also, wanted to make a point about our players' fitness. Last night Livi (understandably to a degree) were done after 60-70mins. They couldn't maintain their press and retreated into a lower block. Meanwhile, we still had both full backs galloping up and down the flanks whilst it was Kamara and Davis that were in the box to help us score. Given the number of games we've played this season (44 since August 1st last year so an average of 7 games a month) and the CV19 factor, the conditioning and fitness performance of our squad really is fantastic. We hear a lot about Gerrard, Beale and even Tom Culshaw but a bit less about Jordan Milsom and the medical staff who have clearly done as much as anyone else to help maintain this title challenge. Kudos to all involved in what remains a team effort.
    11 points
  9. By the way Morelos was a 10/10 performance. Antwerp had no clue how to play him and I think five defenders had a go over the two legs and couldn't do it.
    11 points
  10. Having watched three of the five since they were 12 years old I found it particularly disappointing. I don't think Dapo has ever been in the first team bubble, so the other four shouldn't even have been in contact with him. Rightly or wrongly Nathan and Calvin will still be looked on as assets, whether that means a way back or they will be moved on we will have to wait and see. I would imagine it has ruled out any chance of Bongani's loan move being made permanent. Dapo's contract is up in the summer, his loan move to QOTS was a chance to impress, be that Rangers or in the shop window for another club, it would appear that chance has gone. I believe Brian was offered/signed a new contract recently, could be withdrawn it hasn't been signed. Nathan's parents were a presence at virtually all his games over the years, I would like to have been a fly on the wall to witness their reaction to events, especially watching Thursday's game.
    11 points
  11. Rangers only successful European season ranks as one of it's most intriguing and fascinating. There is a puzzle wrapped enigma in the triumph because it was neither expected nor predicted. Typically over the decades, Euro success arrives after a period of domestic dominance. Ajax, Bayern, Liverpool, .............. etc are all examples. It's the crest of the wave epitomised by Nottingham Forest, win the Second Division, win the First Division, win the European Cup, successfully defend it; all in four short years. Rangers were at the end of five years of domestic doldrums. The League Cup had been secured by DJ's famous header at the end of October'70 but the season was completely overshadowed by the Disaster at Ibrox on the 2nd of January'71 in which 66 died and 145 were injured. Rangers finished the League season in fourth, behind champions, Celtic; Aberdeen and St Johnstone finished second and third. We had been knocked out the Fairs Cup at the first attempt by Bayern Munich and, progress in the Scottish Cup came after a semi-final replay single goal victory over Hibs. The old firm final ran to a second game too. Jim Denny made his debut, played well and, we lost 2-1. After the match, I was walking down the Polmadie Road with a couple of schoolmates, one offered a thought we had qualified for the European Cup Winners Cup? Yep, given our separated brethren had won the league, meant as defeated cup finalists we were destined to participate in a trophy for cup winners. The Rangers team that evening was, McCloy, Denny, Mathieson, Greig, McKinnon, Jackson, Henderson, Penman, Stein, MacDonald and, Johnston. Colin Stein finished the season as the club's top scorer on 12 goals. Polmadie Road bottomed out along with the optimism. A new season(71-72) dawned and aspiration levels were sky high, we sang, "bring on the Celtic". The League Cup section draw had awarded our wish, with both Morton and Ayr United providing ballast. We experienced a five Saturdays sequence whereby we played the champions on three occasions, all three at Ibrox. It was home and away League Cup sectional games(due to construction of a new main stand at Parkhead, the game was transferred to Ibrox) and the season's first old firm league match. We lost 0-2, 0-3 and, 2-3. We were out the League Cup on the first day of September and had lost our first two league games, the aforementioned 2-3 defeat to Celtic was replicated at Firhill. We had drawn the French cup winners, Rennes in the first round of the ECWC. The Bretons were due to play their second ever European tie against Rangers, a club that already lost two ECWC finals against Fiorentina and Bayern Munich. We have seen the Rangers debit column, the credit one was paltry, two pre-season victories against Everton(2-1) and Spurs(1-0) and, securing the Glasgow Cup against Clyde(2-0). The French club were lying second in their championship and the most popular local newspaper, 'Ouest France' saw no fear claiming, "Waddell, raised in the Protestant traditions of the club was hurting because his club were declining at the same time as the rise of Catholic Celtic". It was the first but not the last such comparison during our Barca' quest. Tomorrow on the 50th anniversary of our visit to Rennes, we will follow follow Rangers on their first steps to European silverware.
    10 points
  12. Strange take on it!. NP signing for Everton is exactly the reason the academy is there! like Gilmour before him. To get into the 1st team they have to be better than the current player in his position, right now Tav is a better player and that is why he can't get more game time. I would rather see Patterson stay, however totally understand why he will sign for Everton, it's the best thing for him and the club at this time. NP is a cracking player and I wish him all the best, I'm certain he will have a great career, a player Rangers produced.
    10 points
  13. Cavaliers and Roundheads. We have to regress ten days or so, to Thursday evening 26th November. It is match day 5 in the Europa Cup group stages. The Jolly Craicsters toting bags of swagger are abroad in Germany, playing Bayern Leverkusen. North Rhine-Westphalia was braced for an invasion of rainbow themed balaclavas atop olive drab puffer jackets. Reinforcing the Green Brigade bridgehead was the Pacific Quay spearhead of Liam McLeod and Pat Bonner. The Clydeside HQ was manned by Big Dick and Tom Anguish of Angst. No Celtic lament is complete without the Blarney Bhoys singing descant. Amid the pyro' smoke, the Irish and Palestinian flags waved, announcing the presence of a Scots club about to strut the very epitome of AngeBall. The arrogant parade was relentless in a stadium barely a third full. Liam and Pat chorused the irresistible nature of Sellik's play. At half time it was 1-1 and Big Dick began with, "wow, just wow". Juranovic had dinked the cheekiest of Panenka penalties to equalise and Big Dick overflowed, "they have never won in Germany, with such confidence that could change tonight". It got better just before the hour mark, the sublime Jota struck to put the Cavaliers 1-2 up. Confidence was coursing both on the field and on microphone. Teutonic efficiency was being effortlessly brushed aside, "it's the movement, it's the movement" hollered Pat. A Waffen SS armoured Division had been stopped in it's tracks by uni-cycling, plate spinning horde of green'n'grey sword-swallowing, ball jugglers. We were told ra Sellik support demanded such an approach to the game and, "Celtic are easy on the eye". The Ride of the Valkyries is a refrain, a constant menace intent upon spoiling the party; and the screaming reached a pitch twice in the last seven minutes. All agreed, it was exasperating, so unfair and, undeserved. The match finished 3-2 to Leverkusen and ra Sellik were out of the Europa Cup with a game left to play. Big Dick checked other Group G results and announced, "Celtic have secured European football in the New Year, they will now play in the Euro-Conference competition". Pat is a lovely man, he is only required by BBC Scotland to talk about ra Sellik, a unique designation. He does not cover other games and sometimes comes across as unworldly, "ah hope the Celtic supporters get a big, attractive name in the draw". Here's hoping Dagenham and Redbridge will suffice? Big Dick then hosted a three way discussion on the rarity of away wins in Europe for Scots teams and the inevitability of endings such as that evening's. The show must go on because another Scots club was participating in the same tournament that evening, the Rangers - Sparta Prague game kicked-off at 8 O'Clock. We were told Rangers could qualify on the evening if, and it was a big IF; Rangers won by two clear goals and Lyon defeated Bronby. As usual, there was NO live commentary, NO updates and, no real discussion. Half-time at Ibrox was 1-0 Rangers and Big Dick announced the score and scorer, then spent the entire 15 minute break discussing Scotland's possible opponents in the next day's World Cup qualifiers draw. The match ended 2-0 Rangers and Lyon scored 3 in the last 20 minutes to defeat the Danes. Big Dick dolefully announced, "Rangers have qualified for the next round of the Europa League". There was no mention of the improved national coefficient, no mention of Rangers position in Europe rising from 216th to 41st in three years, no mention of Rangers Youths already managing two of those Hens teeth away wins in Europe this season, no mention ........................... Ah, life as a Roundhead?
    10 points
  14. Absolutely, but wouldn't we prefer to have our manager move on because he's in demand, that he's been successful, that he deserves to move on to further his career? You cannot expect SG to turn down a job in a bigger league for 5x the salary, even when that may not be the best timing. Life dictates that you look after no1 - we'd all do the same in our careers, why should it be any different in football. Good luck to SG and the rest of the coaching staff. We should feel lucky he was with us on our journey back to the top and let's not forget what he did. The crap you read in the media about one trophy in nine is from haters. Simple. Gerrard and the team turned us from being a laughing stock, noobs in the Premier League with no direction or character. He transformed the club on and off the pitch, he put us back on the map in Europe, he figured out how to win consistently against Separate FC and won the title by the biggest margin, undefeated and crushed their tainted 10 dream. So we didn't win a cup, but Jesus H, we'd all have taken that. I'll only have good memories and I think in time all Gers fans will, but I respect the raw feelings right now. Let's hope Gio, or whoever is lucky enough to lead our great club is able to build on what SG and his team have done with the same passion, drive and success. On to 56!!!
    10 points
  15. To say once a Ranger always a Ranger just after he's left us at a very important time in the season and what it means to the league winner was not the best line IMO. He's done a runner in the night with the whole backroom staff that could hamper our season big style. Like most Rangers fans I saw him as a hero after winning the title and how the club has changed in his time here and after what he said only a few weeks ago I thought he'd stay to at least the end of the season or a shot at the CL if we won the league. I've just lost a bit of respect for him leaving the way he did and just hope now we get in a manager and backroom staff that can take us forward even more and get off to a good start!
    10 points
  16. Sitting here looking at some of the comments of our former manager onsocial media and these mugs should be ashamed to call themselves Rangers fans in my opinion they are no better than the mob across the city . I wonder if any of these guys got offered a job at a much bigger salary would they knock it back .
    10 points
  17. Sacked in the Morning? Craig Levein was the guest on Off the Ball yesterday, he was intent on promoting the new Blog he co-presents with Amy Irons, 'Sacked in the Morning'. A great title and made an even better start last week when Craig referred to Michael Stewart, "as a bellend". An increasingly frustrated Michael took to social media last midweek rueing a missed opportunity to sink another boot into the H-u-ns, "I don't know when I'll appear on Sportscene, I have not been invited". I suspect Michael is a victim of the escalating war between Staffers and Freelancers at PQ? As Michael looks forward to a Jum Spence type future, he will become increasingly reliant on Stuart Cosgrove evoking his memory. The Fir Park scoreline of Motherwell 1 Rangers 6 was described by Cosgrove as, "shocking and frightening" before he grabbed his Jum Spence comfort blanket. Does Jum remain relevant? Did you know Jum has stepped down from his role as Rector of Dundee Uni'? He resigned with a whimper last March claiming he could not effectively support the undergraduates. In other words Jum's conservative catholicism does not allow him to fully engage plus, the unpaid role was a penurious road. Anyways, RAB(rancid auld bigot) Cosgrove liked the 'Well Bois banner, 'Happy Halloween ya Zombie Bastards' and had no hesitation in replying to a Craig Levein story of Souness and Smith attempting to sign him at the Forth Bridge Motel in late 1987 with, "did they offer you an EBT"? Murray did not even own the club at that point, but it is Spence-esque. You know demanding Rangers should be prosecuted under the Proceeds of Crime Act and Jum assured BBC Radio Scotland listeners this was the case because he lectured in Law. Of course, it fell apart when he was asked what was the crime and who has been found guilty? The Staffer - Freelancer conflict is interesting. BBC Scotland regularly employs over a dozen Freelancers for it's coverage of football. PQ can legitimately claim they have no control over the comments of Freelancers and these last thirty years they have used Freelancers to articulate comfortable preferred prejudices. Jum was let go twice because he was a Staffer. RAB Cosgrove and Richard Gordon have been Freelancing for 30 years. Big Dick's prejudices are well documented on this thread, the nearest he came to being relieved was 2007 when he casually abused Rangers player, Filip Sebo. It was the last hours of the Transfer month and Big Dick was hosting, 'Through the Window' on BBC Radio Scotland. He told the listeners he had an e0mail announcing the transfer of Filip Sebo but he would have to clear it with his Producer. This went on for nearly an hour and finally at the end of the show he broadcast, "Edinburgh Zoo have accepted the transfer of Rangers player, Filip Sebo, they plan to exhibit him". The PQ Gang Hut laughed like drains. Rangers supporters took Big Dick the whole way and BBC Scotland reprimanded him. Now, Richard Gordon occasionally refers to this as the worst thing he has ever experienced in broadcasting. Why is it always Rangers and Rangers supporters Rheinhardt? You were raised to hate Rangers and continually, you flash those credentials. Only last week you went off on one from the PQ studio. Apparently, you had a better view from the studio of Sakala being dragged by his jersey to the Ibrox turf, than I and tens of thousands of others had, attending Ibrox. You attempted to involve Pat Bonner in your accusation that a Referee, John Beaton had cheated your beloved Dandy Dons. You did not receive satisfaction thus took to your Aberdeen Press and Journal column to pen the following poison : "The Don's resurgence would have looked even stronger had they not been cheated. The game swung on an embarrassing, but hardly unexpected decision by Referee, John Beaton to award Rangers another controversial penalty and hand them the opportunity to snatch a point. Only the official and inexplicably the Sportscene pundits, thought it was a spot kick and the frustration of Stephen Glass and his players was entirely understandable". Big Dick accuses the Ref' of cheating, it was another controversial penalty and, berated his BBC Scotland colleagues on Sportscene for not being on message. You see the freedom enjoyed by a Freelancer? Yesterday, Dick was sick and vented his frustration again at Sakala, "a hat trick hero but nothing he did in the first forty minutes of the match would lead you to believe he was capable of such an achievement". I guess it's inexplicable. Another inexplicably arrived yesterday, the day before at Celtic Park where Big Dick was present; a visiting American Journo, White House Correspondent Philip Crowther over here for COP26 took in the Sellik-Livi' game and was disappointed at the racism aimed at Ayo Obileye by the home support. He heard 'monkey' being screamed and this was reported in a number of USA newspapers. Similarly, last Wednesday at Easter Road where BBC Scotland had live commentary. Former Sellik View cub Reporter, Andrew Smith took to the Hootsmon to complain long and hard at the constant songs of sectarianism emanating from the Green Brigade. Again, Big Dick ignored something he would have raised if Rangers supporters had been accused. I suggest RAB Cosgrove, Richard Gordon, JumSpence and, Michael Stewart form a self help group.
    10 points
  18. We could get rangers_syntax to ask them some obtuse, confusing questions while buster prepares a lengthy dossier on their misbehaviour. Failing that, we could get Rousseau to bore them to death with stats. After that, if they're still standing, I'm sure no one would be mad enough to take on Bill in a debate.
    10 points
  19. https://www.gersnet.co.uk/index.php/news-category/current-affairs/1383-ftq-rangers-independence-and-the-culture-wars In recent weeks, we’ve seen the demonisation of Rangers supporters - barely caveated with ‘a small sections of’ - by prominent politicians. Anti-Catholic and Anti-Irish bigotry. It seems like a fool’s errand to try and bring logic to a situation like this, because we live in an era of culture wars across the Western world where rationality is no longer the common ground. It is entirely about power. I won’t waste your time giving you a history of the academic roots of this - it stems from claims that don’t have zero merit, but do not stand up to scrutiny. The point for us is that Scotland is not immensely diverse. The intersectional activism that we see here happens at the juncture of Catholicism and Palestine. The analogies drawn between anti-Catholicism and racism by our prominent leaders are prima facie ridiculous. You don’t die in the culture you were born. Sometimes your culture is something you have to overcome. Religion is a choice, not an arbitrary characteristic like skin pigment. Every choice a person makes is one for which they can be realistically held responsible, and it’s acceptable in any free democratic society to disagree with the choices people make. And let’s be honest here - as people more eloquent than me argued, like Stephen Fry and Christopher Hitchens in the IQ Squared debate - that Catholicism is not a nice religion. No gay people. No condoms in Africa. Not to mention historical crimes, and ongoing ones to do with children. Now what I’m expressly not saying is that it is okay to hate or discriminate against Catholics - fresh and blood human beings - but it is perfectly okay to object to an objectionable religion, and judge people - morally - who choose to follow it in knowledge of all that it stands for. Catholics are free to do the same - an indeed, theologically, do so, as they are the only real mediation between God and man. So let me quickly say: F**k the Queen. A basic political statement, yes? Not illegal. Though wait. Symbolic head of state. Head of a church. However, is the same not also true for the Pope? Who holds sway over billions? I’m not saying you should be saying these things - not by any means. I’m just saying, the analogy is perfect. However, I hear you say: Catholics are in a minority in this country, so it deeply hurts their feelings. So what? I was once called a wee proddy bastart and kicked in the head for having a Rangers scarf in my pocket - fly kicked, so it left a footprint, which was funny - and did I go into a fit of self-pity because I’d been persecuted by a sectarian attack? No, I got kicked in the head by a ned. Life’s hard. Also, the idea that Catholics are a persecuted minority is bordering on laughable: they are represented strongly across media, academia, in the judiciary, and in our illustrious politicians, as Tom Devine pointed out in a recent article for The Herald - not that I’m implying he’d endorse anything said here. They are a success story of immigration. They endured many horrors that should not have happened - history is brutal, you may have noticed as history still happening - but the worst they are subject to now is hearing words their precious ears can’t handle hearing. That’s just not grown up. It is, however, strategically placed in a broader context. It’s what Nietzsche would call slave morality. If you consider the etymology of words like ‘good’ and ‘evil’, you find out that good meant, at least for the ancient Greeks, things like noble, desirous of what is excellent, high minded. ‘Bad’ meant common, plebeian, simple. However, he noted that there was a route for the common and simple to win power by holding on tightly to their weakness and not letting go. Forming a herd that was more vocal and overwhelming, and inverting the values such that to be weak and commonplace and easily hurt became the means by which even a minority could dominate the majority. Ironically, Christianity.- both Protestantism and Catholicism - is what gives it its modern force, despite its roots in more modern conceptual thinking. It’s why it works, it’s why they use it - and that’s all it is. A strategy, to gain more power / votes / whatever, by making your weakness a virtue. It’s why you can dominate the SFA and still feel like there’s a conspiracy against you while you dump your opponents - on which you rely - to the bottom tier of the leagues. So what about all the nasty songs then? I realise I’m in a minority, as it’s just prudent to modernise, but we’re talking logically here, not tactically: the bad songs that are now illegal to sing should not be illegal in any country that values free speech. Anything that is more than words should be punished to the utmost letter of the law - whether it’s denying a job, or being assaulted. I want to know a bigot when I hear one. To do that, they need to be able to say bigoted things. Then I can form my judgement. Do I think the Bad Songs are bigoted? Sure. They’re also historical, and have a context, and a culture. Still, bigoted. Should they be illegal? No. Quite obviously not. Words should never be illegal. And to remind you: bigoted is not racism. Catholicism is not an immutable characteristic, it’s a choice. You have the choice to say: “Proud to be a fen!an, come try and get this blood, see how far you get.” And this is coming from someone who left an Old Firm at half time because I was near the Celtic fans and just hated the bigoted back and forth. We should be aiming to transcend bigotry. However, let’s be honest here - we don’t have Protestants chasing down Catholics and giving them beatings on the finer points of the Catechism. We’re dealing with working class people, who want to sing the songs that sound the most intimidating, with some dislike of a particular religion thrown in. Sure. It’s a religion that - according to most statistics - many Catholics are finding it hard to love themselves. Will we be better off when it’s gone? Yes. Is the right way to go about it by bans on speech and demonisation? Of course, prohibition has always worked. You’re willing to sacrifice something more precious - freedom of expression, freedom to dislike people’s choices - to protect the ears of those who use being offended to gain power? Not a worthwhile strategy, not good for the country, not good for even Catholics. Now, I’m not going to go to the other side of the city and their anti-Protestant anti-British sins, or their under-reported un-wailed-about group actions. Whataboutery will get us nowhere. Because they can say what they like. I’m adult enough to hear words and not burst out crying. The bigger question is always: Cui Bonos? Who benefits from the demonisation of Rangers supporters. Who benefits from stoking up tensions? Nationalists. Now, everyone can have their own opinion on whether Scotland should be independent, many Rangers fans want independence. All good. However, the core difference between Protestantism and Catholicism - theologically - is that one invented the idea of the individual, and the other is collectivised. It’s why you can guess what a die-hard Celtic fan thinks about almost any issue before they’ve opened their mouth. They are a similar range of fans, don’t get me wrong, we’re the same cross section of society. But a genuine supporter to die-hard, with 99% predictive power: Palestine? Pro its liberation. Constitutional monarchy? Not a fan. U2? Just kidding. Independence? Therein lies the rub. On average - though, like I said, we’re not grouped by much more than love of a club - Rangers fans are unionists. All this demonisation isn’t to harden the Celtic support’s backing of independence. That’s locked in. It’s for the swing vote. The perpetual wee-man syndrome of Nationalism annoys me personally - also the idea that there could be a cuddly nice nationalism that isn’t principally based on an irrational hate of someone or something. Story for a different site and article. However, the dog and pony show of pretence offence was for the swing vote. Look what happens when people with union flags start getting on top again? Violence, horror, taking Scotland backwards. Have they forgot this is Scotland? Like neds fighting on a Saturday night after hours of boozing is crazily out of the ordinary? Taking Scotland backwards? We’ve had years of one party rule - anyone who has any read the Scotland Act knows that the Scottish government has the power to do almost anything it wants except start a war or any other aspect of foreign policy - and the country is a shIthole, from the NHS to education, to anything to which your mind can wander. It’s because they don’t care about those things - not really, they care about stoking up enough persecution complex that we vote to leave Evil England so we can be ruled by someone further away. Also for people who’ve not studied law: EU, not super democratic. All we have is prohibitions on free speech and a divided country, because ideology matters more to these people. You might be saying: anti-Irish, you mentioned that at the start. That’s immutable. Sure, but it’s a valid point of view to want Ireland to be one country. It’s also a valid point of view to want to maintain the union. That’s by the by - Rangers fans don’t hate Ireland, it’s a lovely place to visit. They dislike Irish nationalism, and that foreign flags are being flown in this country - in which their living is made, and that has brought them such success, with historical persecution acknowledged - to spite those who actually patriotically believe in it. Our feelings weren’t hurt though. But it’s not about that - it’s about the fact that hating Irish nationalism is a valid political opinion. It’s a f*ck-you to the hypocrisy of the thing. And they can point our contradictions and so on. Not all Irish people are nationalists. Also, Irish isn’t a race. Take it at its worst: if you can’t say: “Oh, that’s weird”, to someone who shouts “F Ireland”, you just need to work your way back up through nursery and try again at being an adult in the real world. This isn’t an apology for bigotry. I look forward to the time when we’ve transcended all this nonsense, but in the interim we’re creating cures worse than that which we’re fighting.
    10 points
  20. Humza Hates H-u-ns. I thought I would wait a week to see the extent of PQ's limit of exploitation? As stated two posts up, there has been a significant change of phase, Michael Stewart defined it, "sectarianism is racism". It's a stick fashioned to beat Rangers supporters. UEFA have already closed an Ibrox stand and PQ is heavy with anticipation. There are no shortage of volunteers wanting to be seen wielding the stick. Hitting H-u-ns fills the usual suspects with a feeling of immense well being and as we have seen on numerous past occasions, a guaranteed good career move. The prepared ground at PQ is very safe H-u-n skelping ground. So safe, both the First Minister and last week's Justice Minister, Humza Yousaf had no hesitation, they stepped on and added a few skelps. Humza revealed BBC Scotland asked him to comment on the doctored video sourced from, 'WullieWanker'. Humza pushed the limit of exploitation right into the Thornton Suite, suggesting Rangers players sang sectarian(racist) add-ons and demanded if the video was proved to be validated, "those players involved should be shown the door". Police Scotland decreed no criminality, Humza is back on the Sunday Show this morning; this time as Health Minister continuing to push sectarianism is racism and last Saturday was all about anti-Irish racism. The National Broadcaster and the Scottish Government have accepted Call it Out's narrative, the leaders of the organisation, Jeanette Findlay and Angela Haggerty are regular contributors to all means hosted by BBC Scotland. The safety of the PQ ground is such that the man who has just spent three years as Justice Minister has NEVER been asked for comment on the list of malicious prosecutions of former Rangers owners currently going through the High Court, likely to cost the public purse in excess of £300 million. Further, he has NEVER been asked as to the progress on an official inquiry initiated by himself, on the disappearance of all evidence against nine fellow Celtic supporters who hanged effigies by the neck, from the North Stand above dozens of 'Kill All H-u-ns' flags. Three years and counting. I welcome the Club's attempts to take Humza to court over comments made, but I fear it could be a difficult and costly way to go. However, several of the Rangers players being accused by Humza courtesy of WullieWanker, are practising RCs. They have sensitivities and the Club as their employer must protect those sensitivities. If we leave it to Call it Out to address the sensitivities of Rangers numerous catholic players, we will waiting longer than a Humza instigated inquiry to reach publication. Discipline? This is a subject I find myself returning to frequently. What is it about individual and collective discipline that an element of our support cannot grasp? Being a Rangers supporter carries responsibilities. Marching from Ibrox to George Square twice in a two months period, initiating tens of thousands of pounds of pyro', banging drums and, chanting love for Rangers can just about be explained away as, "exuberance". There is a well established precedence. Here's the but and it's a big BUT. As soon as you bellow, "fcuk the pope", you are fcuked. Like the vast majority of Rangers supporters, I did not attend and there's no doubt that elements of the 25,000 that did trap, let us all down. If you have an issue with the pope and there's plenty, find a better way to present it. Pope Francis was a parish priest, Monseigneur and, a Canon during the Facist Military Junta that governed Argentina for eight years in the late 70s to mid-80s. Thirty thousand people were disappeared, mostly taken up in choppers and dropped into the Andes. Francis said nothing. Over a thousand children of those disappeared were put up for adoption to approved families, Francis said nothing, ............ etc. I am sure Angela will listen if you call it out? Here's an example of good discipline that will not impress, but should be acknowledged. The Green Brigade have had several opportunities this last fortnight to get active in support of their preferred prejudices, they have deferred, hunkered down knowing any actions would have ran interference upon the constant artillery targeting Rangers and Rangers supporters. Of course, they have been told not to run interference and have adhered. The Club saw the ambush waiting and they liaised with both the Council and Scottish Government to avoid the trap. The Club asked for ten thousand fans to be contained inside Ibrox on each of four days, essentially repetitive trophy presentations. This was akin to two seasons past, the creation of the Fanzone. Then, the SNP led Residents Committee of Cessnock and Ibrox told Rangers they were more interested in the health and well being of children and not interested in booze'n'burgers. Ibrox is the ground of tactical importance and on both occasions, the council and Scottish Government took the decision to deny containment. They wanted the march because they knew considerable political capital could be made. We can all understand the emotions involved. We have been battered from pillar to post during what our enemies refer to as, 'the Banter Years'. There is a decade of frustration to be exercised and numerous targets to be engaged. In the past, I would advocate leadership. Having experienced five years on the RST Board exercising said leadership, I realised there is an element of our support that do not want to be led. In effect, nihilists determined to bellow, 'fcuk the pope'. On Friday night, the young team did something wonderfully creative, an aesthetic unseen before; they lit up both sides of the Clyde with flares, for a distance of a mile. Right in front of PQ too. Less is more, why not leave it at that? Even the Bouncy of the Squinty, a fantastic piece of vibrance, leave it at that? No, we over egged it, marched along the Broomielaw and invested George Square for a second time. Where is the discipline, where is the leadership? Imagine marching your troops into a square where you can be easily contained, cordoned and, controlled. Police Scotland will enjoy shooting fish in that particular barrel for months to come. Five March. Five March is a restaurant on the western side of Charring Cross. It's proprietor, Joanna Nethery was on the Sunday Show last Sunday. Prior to Humza levelling both barrels, the discussion topic was Glasgow remaining in lockdown and how this was effecting the hospitality sector? Joanna was upbeat and articulated a dichotomy on Lockdown extension. The compensation available was inadequate, "it doesn't touch the walls" but the First Minister's leadership throughout the pandemic, "absolutely wonderful, she has led the country faultlessly". Joanna's smile was beatific whilst praising Nicola. I have read and listened to the reactions of numerous Glasgow restauranteurs on extended Lockdown and they are bitterly invective at Nicola's continued draconian stance. There is no empirical evidence linking the virus spread to folks attending prepared restaurants. It would appear Joanna was speaking alone. You make a couple of calls and are rewarded with information. Five March is so named because it commemorates the fifth of March 1770 - the Boston Massacre. The Army fired into a Colonial demonstration, killing seven protesters. This was the catalyst for the American War of Independence. A pretty obscure name for a Glasgow eatery? However, Joanna and partner, Kevin Small believe England treats Scotland as a colony. It's a delicious secret for those in the know. Go back a dozen years, the original PQ Gang Hut was based in the Admiral Bar in Waterloo Street. Down stairs at the Waterloo was where Phil McFournames held his briefings and presentations. The eclectic mix attending shared information and took decisions, it was good to be a man in the know. Now, we know BBC Scotland is biased against independence because there was an impromptu demonstration of four thousand Nationalists carrying laser printed placards of Nick Robinson, who had annoyed Salmond or Sturgeon during the 2014 Referendum. It's heartening to see PQ acknowledging the old management team of the Admiral Bar, Joanna and Kevin whilst advertising the new Gang Hut eatery and turning up the volume on a very specific message. Worshipping at the altar is not enough, you must be seen to be doing so. I was thinking about opening a restaurant celebrating Scotland's colonial past, the Darien Scheme, anyone want to book a table?
    10 points
  21. So here the journey really does end, nine years after the clubs in the SPL and SFL took an unnecessary decision to put the country's foremost club in it's place and share the kudos of lording it over the "bigheads and bigots" at Ibrox. No one will ever convince me that what Rangers was put through was motivated by anything other than envy and bigotry, nowhere more so than amongst the Scottish nationalist and pseudo-Irish communities. There should be no doubt either that many of those who pulled the rug out from under us were quite prepared to see Rangers extinguished altogether. You just know that after nine years of struggle and disappointment, there are still many in Scottish football who see this, our day of glory, as their failure and a profound disappointment. You might think this is a day of renewal and forgiveness when we should put the past behind us but I think not. If there's one thing we should never forget as we enter a new era for Rangers, it's the fact that those we have to share this league with and those who administer the game are the same people and clubs who would have destroyed our club. For me, that day nine years ago ended any respect I had for the rest of Scottish football and that's a fence that will never be mended. You might like to think there are one or two who will see the league trophy raised at Ibrox and feel a tinge of guilt or remorse .... but I doubt it. Enjoy the day, celebrate to the full, it's been a very long time coming. But never lose sight of why we went through all that pain and for God's sake don't be the people who line up to criticise bears who want to take to the streets to mark what is our equivalent of reaching the summit of Everest.
    10 points
  22. What's the purpose of Rangers? It's a serious question. Why do Rangers exist, why do we continue nearly 150 years after a handful of teenagers fancied a game of football instead of mucking about in boats? Arsenal, Manchester Utd and Liverpool now exist to provide a handsome income for their main shareholders, sports clubs are their livelihood and they'll follow the path of greatest profit. Chelsea and Man City are more complicated, they can be seen as vanity projects, as 'sports-washing' to put a respectable shine on some people who otherwise might not have the best PR in the west. But it's important for their owners that their clubs are always at the top, whether that's for ego or profile reasons. Barcelona and Real Madrid are intertwined with politics and identity in Spain, both seen as representatives of competing ideologies, and important vehicles for the political and business interests of the people at the top of them. It's similar in Italy too for their big 3 clubs. What are Rangers for then? Our current owners don't seem to be interested in politics and if they're looking for a livelihood they've made a terrible error. In reality I suspect it largely boils down to them wanting the team they support to do as well as possible. Maybe ego and profile play a small part too, but largely it's about the football I think. I've really enjoyed the last 3 years football wise, and I realise that a huge part of that has been down to getting entertained again. Watching Rangers play decent passing football, properly competing in European competition again, developing players into fan heroes and, of course, winning the league. But even last season and the season before, despite the collapse in the league, I enjoyed watching Rangers. We had players that were capable of exciting you and a style that was very pleasing to watch, even if it didn't always prove successful. I realise that's pretty much all I want from Rangers; entertainment, excitement and hope. I want to believe we can win the league or the cup, I want to see us play football that's not kick and rush or punt it up the channels, I want more than that. And I want moments that lift me off my seat, that make me shout out loud, that make me want to post on message-boards and jibber on podcasts. I don't think I'm alone in that either. Football changes. In 1888 Rangers had a rivalry with Vale Of Leven, who were a top side at that time. Within a few years Vale had dropped out of the newly introduced league system. They've been a Junior team for nearly a century now. For much of our history the Glasgow Cup was a competition we took very seriously, both as a club and as a support. It's been a youth competition for nearly 20 years now. Arguably the greatest achievement in our history is winning the European Cup Winners Cup, yet it's not existed as a tournament for over 2 decades now. Football changes, no matter how much I don't want it too. In the future the competitions we enter will change and the rivalries we'll have with clubs will change too. I think, as a club and a support, we have to be open to change. Much as I lament the ending of the old European club competitions, much as I blame the Champion's League and the EPL for most of the problems football now faces, I have to deal with the reality of where we are today. I can be entertained playing in the Scottish leagues, but something needs to be done to improve the standard of player and of football being played. That might involve some pain for us. We might need to share revenue more evenly with our fellow clubs, we might need to increase the number of sides in the league, play each other fewer times, introduce incentives for home grown players. What's not practical is continuing as we are in Scottish football. The standards have been dropping gradually for 30 years, that needs to be arrested soon or we'll need to start seriously looking elsewhere. I'm not against leaving Scotland either. Whether that's a UK wide league, a European League, a hybrid all-the-medium-sized-countries league, whatever, I'm open to it. New rivalries can be created, new trophies can be won. But, and I think this is important, whatever we do we should do it so we can keep entertaining our support. So we can create new heroes, play scintillating football and, hopefully, win things along the way. It should never be about chasing money and money alone. I never want to see us in a league where finishing fourth is a celebrated achievement. I never want to see us in a league where failure isn't punished by relegation. Rangers need finance, I understand that, and I understand that better players command higher salaries and so on. But Rangers don't currently have the best players in the world, indeed you could argue we never have, but they can still thrill and entertain us, that's what Rangers should be about.
    10 points
  23. That was the week that was. I am just old enough to remember BBC broadcasting, 'that was the week that was'. It was mid-sixties grainy black and white TV. Ned Sherrin created it, David Frost hosted, and an army of household names wrote the satire. John Cleese, Peter Cook, Dennis Potter, Roald Dahl, Bill Oddie, Erik Sykes, Denis Norden, Frank Muir, ......... etc. Even as a Primary schoolboy, I got the ridicule reserved for Apartheid, the class system, the racism of the American deep south, and all involved in domestic politics. The only part of the show that irked arrived at the conclusion, Millicent Martin sand a topical song in a cool jazz style. The show was the pre-cursor for the next quarter of a century of TV/Radio satirical shows. The Frost Report to Spitting Image and everything in between, owe their existence to 'that was the week that was'. Peter Cook launched the satirical magazine, 'Private Eye' on the back of the show, a case of mutual support. Further, Cook also had a nightclub , 'the Establishment' for several years, predicated on the growing sense of ridiculous. Everyday phrases such as, "tired and emotional" and "Ugandan affairs" emanate from the show. Our attention was drawn to MPs' expenses scandals, conflicts of interest, and their abilities to evade the revolving door. In new, modern Scotland we have no satire. Most Journos and commentators are cheerleaders for the current Scottish Government. Principles mean nothing to professional politicians, no one resigns because their considerable lifestyles won't allow it. As for comedians, Janey Godley is the epitome, does regular voiceovers of the First Minister's speeches and Angela Haggerty's one year old son, Francis; and is duly rewarded with a weekly column in the Herald. No doubt, her daughter, the privately educated Ashley Storrie will be a nepotistic beneficiary? This is the new, modern Scotland of entitlement, privilege, and woke sensitivities. This time last week, the newspaper front pages and broadcast current affairs shows were still being dominated by the fall out from Salmond's trial on sexual misconduct. Another two SNP MPs were subject to further charges of sexual misconduct, Chief Whip Patrick Grady and one other, as yet unnamed. The Holyrood Inquiry into Salmond had just been stymied by the First Minister's 8 hours of, "I don't know", "I can't recall and, "I would have to check my Diary". Nicola's husband and SNP Chief Executive these last 20 years, Peter Murrell was desperately seeking a case of, 'Events dear boy, events'? It arrived, courtesy of ra Sellik's inability to notch a goal at Tannadice. Rangers had won their first Premiership title in a decade. Rockets flew, fireworks exploded, and joy took to the square. Such detonation lit the fuse for the pile on. BBC Scotland deployed Sports Correspondent, Chris McLaughlin. He worked the leverage of UEFA. Creepy's brother told of watching eyes and the very real threat(in his fevered thought) of cancelation of Hampden's involvement in the upcoming Euros. Gary Robertson led the current affairs onslaught, every politician was asked, "have Rangers done enough"? Glasgow was under siege, Rangers supporters had prevented Nurses getting home after their shifts, Rangers supporters had prevented the homeless accessing the soup kitchen, and Rangers supporters had vandalised memorial benches in George Square. In three days, from Monday to Wednesday, BBC Scotland dedicated comment and phone-ins entirely to Rangers supporters' excess. Momentum was needed, feed the fire and the FM stepped forward, expressing her anger and anguish. John Swinney pointed the finger, Rangers were to blame. Humza Yousaf agreed with the Dear Leader, Rangers were found wanting and he Hectored a senior Polis Officer into adding his signature to a condemnatory letter. Despite video evidence twice showing other channel commentators in Edmiston Drive being drowned out by a bellowing Ibrox PA asking supporters to return home, Rangers did nothing. More momentum needed. SNP controlled Glasgow City Council utilised their PRO, Gerry Braiden's contacts at his old blatt, and Catriona Stewart et al delivered a seven page expose on events. Sellik could not see green cheese, they screamed, 'we're half of nothing' and warned next Sunday's old firm game could be called off by the authorities. Stuart Cosgrove and Professor Eamonn O'Neill hosted their Podcast with Angela Haggerty as guest. The conclusion, Rangers supporters behave the way they do, because of entitlement. Oh, and a wee bit of satire, they liked Police Scotland's statement, "we are the people"? A whole week and Salmond's name has disappeared. Derek MacKay MSP must be wondering why the "h-u-ns and typical orange wankers" did not ride to his rescue? Anyways, Rangers must wise up, when an election is pending we cannot present ourselves as targets. There is a truth, the Nats like nothing better than being seen to be sinking the boot into Rangers and Rangers supporters. It's their preferred good look. It's a lesson we must learn, the football is a tactic and the football does not matter. The trumping strategy is condemnation of a majority of Bears celebrating with Union Flags. Oh, the hatred? The national broadcaster is determined that Rangers will never be portrayed as bringing anything good to Scottish life. We do not carry the standard, we do not improve the coefficient and the nation cannot be beneficiaries of any Rangers effort. Rangers securing the title has been the unifying force for the Scottish Government, BBC Scotland, Glasgow City Council and ra Sellik. Yesterday, Cosgrove summed it up, "If I complain about the actions of Rangers supporters in George Square knowing fellow Saints fans gathered at McDairmid to celebrate the League Cup win, then it's whataboutery. They don't get it, people with no interest in football see what happened in George Square, it's a disgrace". That was the week that was sans satire. It is fitting Cosgrove has the last words. He puts out considerable effort in self portrayal, a loner liking nothing better than sitting down to read. In his occasional garrulous moments he betrays daily relations with Angela Haggerty, Kevin McKenna, Gerry Braiden, Eamonn O'Neill, .... etc. This week and incidents like the IRA murder of fellow Journo, Lyra McKee highlights his absolute adherence to separate development. Stuart speaks with all the confidence of a supporter of Scotland's second most successful team in the last decade and he knows BBC Scotland will never tire of relating that fact. PS. A couple of bon mots from last week. Firstly, it's Friday evening and Michael Stewart is in the Sportsound studio with Ricky Foster. The Host offers his weekly man of the week nomination. Three names : 1. Steven Gerrard winning the title and favourite to lead Rangers into the Europa Cup last eight. Undefeated in both tournaments so far. 2. Alan McGregor only conceding nine goals in 32 league games and that save against Slavia. 3. Derek McInnes for enduring 8 seasons at Pittodrie and winning a League Cup. Ricky Foster cannot decide between Gerrard and McGregor but settles on Greegs. Michael chooses McInnes, no doubt because of biomechanics? Secondly, Friday night and it's The View from the Terrace. Now, five regulars appear on this hour long TV show. Craig Telfer(Stenhousemuir) hosts, three others, Craig Fowler(Hearts), Joel Sked(Hearts) and, Shaughan McGuigan(Raith Rovers) discuss and Robert Borthwick(Hearts) handles the social media content. I enjoy the show, they don't miss us when deserved, but happily they stick it on ra Sellik just as often. Generally, they know football, particularly lower Division stuff. Anyways, they are praising Rangers Culture's social media work last week, listing all the detractors one by one this last decade and ripping them eg Spiers and the "quietly terrified" quip. Shaughan McGuigan offers, "Ah love it, they've nailed every Celtic supporter from Rod Stewart to Jim Spence"(Jum's Tweet : "Celtic signing Shane Duffy has secured ten-in-a-row"). Satire Shaughan, satire. That was the week that was.
    10 points
  24. In the run up to the 1986 World Cup the Scotland squad had a pre-tournament training camp in America prior to the tournament. It was being used to acclimatise the players to the heat and altitude they'd face in Mexico as well as to allow the management team of Sir Alex Ferguson and Walter Smith to work on tactics, shape and so forth. Rod Stewart, at that time living in Hollywood, threw a party and invited all the players. When Ferguson heard he forbid any players to attend. Needless to say a few quite fancied attending a party in Hollywood surrounded by starlets and an escape party was created and an escape and return was executed. One of the members of this party was Graeme Souness, at that time captain of Scotland, one of the most decorated players and senior members of the squad and also the new Rangers manager. Needless to say Ferguson found out and wasn't too happy. You get a group of guys together and impose rules on them some will look to break them, that's normal behaviour in my experience. Whether it's a works golf outing or a group of well paid professional footballers, there will be some who break the rules. I mean do we really think this isn't going on at every club in Scotland? I'll bet it is, the problem Paterson has is no one cares if 5 Livingston players and their girlfriends get together, no one would even recognise them. How many members of this forum have 'bent' the rules over the last 10 months? Those of us with teenage children, can we all really say that they've followed every rule by the book? Let he who is without sin and all that. This has almost certainly cost Zungu a contract, that's a big punishment. Paterson and Bassey could have realistically played a decent amount of first team football in the next two months. Paterson, had he come on last night, played well and continued to play well for the rest of the season could have even forced himself into the Scotland Euros squad this summer, right back is a problem position for Scotland after all. That's gone now. I get the anger and the disappointment, they did something stupid, something really stupid. I just don't think it should cost them their jobs, I don't see how that helps them or us.
    10 points
  25. With that in mind, I've kept a close eye on the recent debate on historic child abuse within Scottish football. Some of the names involved in the subject were familiar to me and I also played for three years at Hutchison Vale, one of the club's highlighted in the yesterday’s SFA report. I was also fortunate enough to play with Dundee Utd for a few years and for Scotland at under 15 and under 16 level. Included in this were travelling to and playing at places such as Northern Ireland, Wales, Italy, Sweden, France, Holland and more. I played against teams from Cameroon, the USA, the Czech Republic, Italy, Thailand and more: enjoying a post-match craic with our opponents, shared language or not. I was managed by Jim McLean, trained with Duncan Ferguson and played against Thierry Henry. I was that good as a 'keeper, I even allowed Phil Neville to score against me at Ibrox. But, hey, so did Stefan Klos. All this happened over a number of years but I never witnessed genuine abuse; sexual or otherwise. Verbal 'bullying' was perhaps as bad as it got and that was something we all dealt with in our younger years at school so wasn't unique to football. You made a mistake; sometimes you got support from your coach and team-mates, sometimes not. We were big boys and could handle it. Fun might have been poked at the lad with the dodgy first touch or fashion sense but it didn't matter on the park. At that point we were a team and everyone stuck together. Background or personality didn’t matter and rarely did I ever witness anything get out of hand. And I was treated brilliantly by almost all the people I worked with. There but for the grace of God it seems… With more specific regard to the SFA’s report, as a young teenager, sexual abuse wasn't something I knew much, if anything, about. I’ve always felt my upbringing was probably as normal as one can have: a loving family, a council house and an estate full of friends (and enemies) with few worries as we explored life with the relative freedom most kids have. I was naïve enough to think when you're in your mid-teens, you don't really worry about much other than homework and a new spot appearing before a school disco. I didn't understand for others it was physical, mental and sexual abuse. But that immaturity was exactly why we all need protecting at that age. Even now, as a father of two kids approaching their teenage trials and tribulations, I don't think I'll ever fully realise how tough it must be for some young people. Times appear somewhat different now and kids seem to be older than their years but other complexities develop: social media and online threats mean regular reminders to my girls explaining the dangers out there are a necessity. Embarrassing such talks may occasionally be but happen they must. Decades past may not have seen parent/child relationships so open or so liberal. Reading the horror stories from people I knew from my time in the game make that clear and it's tragic that so many have suffered and continued to do so because the education wasn't there and modern (though still imperfect) safeguards weren't in place. To that end, culpability can genuinely be tricky to apportion. First and foremost, the blame lies with those that blighted the sport (and society as a whole) but if there's a case to answer for others involved then answer it they must. And the colour of the shirt or standing in the game should not matter to us either. When I stopped playing football twenty years ago, I bought a season ticket for Ibrox as I finally had the time to follow follow my childhood team and I still love doing this two decades on. The pride I have in my club is immense and whilst times have been tough for the last ten years, our form this season and the chance of renewed success has taken away some of the stress and frustration of being unable to attend games because of the pandemic. No matter, I love supporting my club whether at Ibrox or from my RTV subscription. However, that doesn’t mean I can’t see the faults within it. Be it historic bigotry, financial mismanagement or abuse of young people, I’d argue it is a key part of being a supporter to question the club and look for improvement in all areas. In that vein, slowly but surely, the club is becoming more inclusive over the years and I’d like to think that post-2012, today’s and future custodians will be more mindful of its fiscal obligations. I’ve also no doubt the child protections and safeguards we now have are second to none. Even so, Rangers is not perfect and it’s not a weakness to admit such. In that sense, how Rangers react to their part in the SFA report is important. Yes, the club have every right to use legal care in their approach and to protect their (our?) reputation. But we also have a moral duty to examine any allegations and act accordingly if, as may be the case, there were genuine failings under our responsibilities. If that is the case, and where such failings are proven, apologies must be made along suitable reparations. We must do the right thing and be seen to do so. Let us lead from the front on that: no prevarications about Oldco or pointing the finger elsewhere, just solemn acknowledgement where appropriate whilst ensuring we have processes in place so such abuse can never happen again. When our club almost ceased to exist in darker days ten years ago, supporters were keen to cement the idea of Rangers ‘then, now and forever’. That was an admirable slogan during a difficult period to try and ensure we all moved on together. It’s certainly a message that resonated with me and one we should return to if or when any historic abuse failings are discussed. And doing that should be a priority not an after-thought. The past may not always be something we can be proud of but if there’s an opportunity to address our mistakes, grab it we must. We cannot control what happened to these people then but we can do so now and forever.
    10 points
  26. The term legend is overused, but JD is an utter legend and not just for his playing career, his friendship with Bradley Lawery showed the type of person JD is. A pleasure having him representing our club, a model professional and I'm sure every Rangers fan will wish him well in whatever he does next. Thanks for the service JD and you have a place cemented in the history of Rangers FC.
    9 points
  27. Scott Wright's Father has a bit of explaining to do:
    9 points
  28. Rangers first priority should be the health of our supporters, players and staff, everything else should be secondary. Based on the available public health advice the game on Boxing Day shouldn't have a crowd at it. As has been pointed out by others the likelihood of these crowd reduction measures being reversed by mid-January seem slim, so for me whether we go into a winter break now or in early January as planned is fairly moot, we'll all be playing behind closed doors at some point I think. The argument that a delay to mid-January will benefit Celtic as it allows them more time to get players fit is fair, but with Balugun, Barasic, Davis and Roofe, all potential starters if fit, also in danger of missing out perhaps a delay might not be that bad for us either. The African Cup of Nations taking possibly 3 of our players away for nearly a month is a problem. Losing 3 players does mean we can legitimately ask for postponements of matches but that would really cause fixture chaos, particularly if our next 3 matches are postponed as well. The club is well within its rights to point that out. I suspect Rangers, and every other club in Scotland, will be looking to minimise the number of matches played with few or no spectators allowed in. A look at last year's accounts shows just how important having a full Ibrox is for the club's finances, and that applies to every club up here. There's no fat for us to fall back on, losing our biggest revenue stream, again, provides some significant challenges for our board. I can understand why bringing the winter break forward is appealing to many boardrooms, if it means there's a chance of fewer matches being played behind closed doors. Of course no one actually knows the answer to that. Politically these recent measures have been unpopular, and with populist governments in place in Edinburgh and Westminster, it maybe that opinion polls rather than health advice carry more weight around cabinet tables this time round. So maybe restrictions won't last as long as they did last year. Or maybe they will, no one knows for sure. (I'm not trying to make a political point or agree or disagree with Government and public health advice. So don't @ me, I don't care.) All we can expect of anyone in our boardroom, or any other club's, is to deal with what they know, not what they suspect. For now that means a loss of crowds and revenue for 3 matches. That being the case bringing the winter break forward and so moving those 3 matches to later in the season is the sensible thing to do, even for Rangers. As an aside, as none of us really know what will happen, it's worth remembering that Celtic are in the Vauxhall Conference Euro Cup. Despite everything that's a tournament they could reasonably expect to progress quite far in. It's not inconceivable that come March and April Celtic are still playing European matches while trying to fit in 5 postponed SPFL matches around a diminishing fixture calendar. I think our board should be looking to book a tour of Japan for this summer, just in case.
    9 points
  29. I actually much prefer the way we have been dealing with our business! the Scottish gutter press have no idea what is happening with Rangers!
    9 points
  30. We're being naive if we think Aston Villa aren't an attractive club for anyone raised in England. They genuinely are the proverbial sleeping giant. They've a big support, based in the second largest city in the country, and a decent history to match. They might have been a yo-yo side in recent times but I'm old enough to remember when Man City and Chelsea were too. Aston Villa have ambitious billionaire owners, a decent squad and money in the bank from the sale of Grealish. On top of that Birmingham is only a couple of hours drive from Liverpool, Gerrard could be home with his family every night. I suspect Gerrard knows that unless he can turn Rangers into perennial Champion's League participants his managerial pedigree isn't good enough for the Liverpool job currently. But, take a side like Aston Villa back into Europe, have them playing exciting football, maybe win a cup, and he's very much in the frame. Remember Klopp had won the Bundesliga and reached the Champion's League final before he was considered for Liverpool. We've not spoken a lot about our recent financial report and what that might mean for the club. Gerrard and his coaching staff are ambitious and our failure to beat Malmo was a huge blow to the club. If we don't win the league this season we might have a problem, we can't keep losing those kind of sums. Having crowds back is a huge help, but we can only balance the books by qualifying for the Champion's League or by selling someone for decent money. Gerrard and his coaching team might feel they've taken us as far as they can with the players we have. Hopefully that's not the case and he does fancy a crack at winning the SPFL and then straight into the Champion's League next season.
    9 points
  31. When Rangers were beating all and sundry in Scotland (and occasionally further beyond) in the 1990s on our run to 9IAR, life couldn't have been better for many Rangers fans. In those days, I felt invincible. I was in my mid-teens, playing at a decent level myself and, even though that meant I didn't get to many Rangers games in person, my club's almost constant success gave me a life confidence that only football fans might understand: a swagger, a gallusness and a self-belief that took me from being a child into adult-hood. As such, when people talked about the death of Walter Smith as being like the loss of their second father, I can identify with that. Of course he wasn't by my side on a day-to-day basis but his management of Rangers was an example of how I could lead my life. And the success he brought our club, seemed to transfer itself to my own outlook. I was lucky enough to meet him once during that period. Ahead of a Victory Shield decider with England at Ibrox in 1992, Walter and Archie Knox were invited into the dressing room to give us an extra team-talk whilst Brian McAlinden (later made a CBE himself) stood aside. Archie did most of the talking but I remember Walter looking us all directly in the eye as we walked out. My football career ultimately fizzled out some time later but that moment will live with me forever. After I stopped playing, I bought my first season ticket in 1999/00 so by the time Walter returned in 2007, life was somewhat different for us all. I was now married, my first daughter was on the way and, despite not having the same success as in the 1990s, Rangers were arguably a bigger part of my life than it had ever been before. As well as being an RST board member, this website was increasingly popular meaning Walter Smith was again a key presence in my life. Again, not standing by me day-to-day but someone I listened to and again admired. On the field at that time, the Rangers team perhaps lacked the individual brilliance of players like Laudrup, Gascoigne and McCoist from his first spell but Walter was quickly able to put his usual pragmatic stamp on the squad in terms of building a successful team. That led us to the UEFA Cup final of 2007/08 in his first full season back and onto three league titles in the following three seasons which, in many ways, were just as impressive as the run he gave us in the previous decade. In that second spell, he proved 9IAR was no fluke, wasn't bought as some critics claimed and that he could stand toe-to-toe with anyone in any dugout. His legendary status was confirmed. As such, when Walter retired in 2011, the loss was immediately felt. Ally McCoist is an incredible man - one I admire more with every time he commentates on football - but he was unable to transfer his quality as a player into management. Events off the park would also take their hold and none of us need reminded of the disappointments of the last decade. In that vein both Ally and Walter would try to help but the frauds associated with the club by then would defeat even their efforts. I contributed to and edited a book on these difficult times and Walter provided the foreword - he didn't know myself or the other editors but he gave his time for nothing because he was a concerned fan like us. It took ten long years before the club would win the top league championship again and in Steven Gerrard we have another winner like Walter. Gerrard also played at the highest level in a very different era - a modern game of money, agents and glamour. Yet, Gerrard is clearly a family man too, equally admired by his peers and, whilst it is too early to say if he'll have the same long and successful association with Rangers as Walter did, delivering our club's 55th title was as important as any of Walter's successes. With that in mind, Gerrard's interview discussing Walter's passing was an emotional one. Steven Gerrard is an indomitable icon of modern football but was brought publicly to tears by the loss of a humble man from Carmyle in Glasgow. Indeed, the tributes from all over the world - sport, politics, TV and film - show just how much of a colossus Walter was. A true giant of world football. That's how I'll remember him. I also believe that his guiding hand will be there for Rangers forever. And for all of us, too.
    9 points
  32. Another fine article by @Rick Roberts:
    9 points
  33. This is fairly niche and perhaps not of interest to everyone. It's also fairly long. I stumbled across it online and found aspects of it quite interesting. I'd always wondered about Callander FC, our first recorded opponents, I'd no idea the strong connection between the town and football. I know a couple of Airdrie fans who might be surprised at the origins of their club! https://scottishfootballorigins.org/2021/08/26/glasgow-before-the-explosion-the-role-of-migration-and-immigration-in-the-development-of-football-cultures-in-the-city-prior-to-1873/comment-page-1/?unapproved=129&moderation-hash=2b5d585235928cae397edb2cf6fe4e96#comment-129
    9 points
  34. "Gerry Braiden is a very good friend of the show" On BBC Radio Scotland's Sunday edition of, 'Off the Ball' Cosgrove announced, "Gerry Braiden is a very good friend of the show". I have related this before, when DrStu' becomes excited, he becomes garrulous. He cannot help himself, he has to name check, feed the listeners bon mots of reflected importance and, tell of his adherence to the crucial pulse. Success has many fathers but letting the listeners know you are the BIG DADDY articulating a meme is an invitation to triumphalism for Cosgrove. Did you know Scots are the only nation expected to view football on TV whilst listening to commentary provided by commentators from a competing nation? The next emotion expressed was banality, "I'm bored rigid with English commentators attempting to squeeze the Euros into a constitutional debate". Swing along the spectrum, resentment bubbled, "it's ridiculous that programmes conceived, edited and, produced outside Scotland are forced upon us". The froth evaporated with, "ah don't care how they do"? Apparently, no other nation would put up with these trying circumstances. Michael Stewart, Chico Young and, Tam Cowan all agreed. Gerry Braiden contributed with an agreeable suggestion, thus DrStu' was acknowledging he was not alone in thinking the above. Despite his Maw being English, all his tertiary education taking place in England and most of his professional life happening in England; Stuart really hates the English. Gerry Braiden is a born and bred Falls Road former Journo. After a dozen years at the Herald, Gerry has been Glasgow City Council's SNP Convenor, Susan Aitken's Policy Advisor these last three years. Gerry will be delighted, the last time Cosgrove lionised him he was, "a good friend of the show". It's the additional "very" that underpins genuine empathy. It's the irony or the lack of that grates. Rangers supporters have endured three years of paying our BBC License Fees and receiving no live commentary whatsoever from Ibrox. To hear Cosgrove and Co' bemoan having to listen to Sam Matterface and Guy Mowbray on several occasions over a four week period without reference to the service they provide to Rangers supporters! Further, Cosgrove and Cowan will be rewarded with a considerable wedge for the extra couple of dozen shows they hosted over the four weeks, the gravy train keeps on running. In part, we pay their remuneration; occasional shouts of, "we want to hear from Rangers supporters" does not cut it. Talking of four weeks, that's the time period Professor Jason Leitch has been off the show. Fifteen months unstinting, then take a month and forget football Jason. Of course, Wembley, Leicester Square, Hyde Park, .... etc twenty thousand Scots, thirty-odd arrests, a massive spike in Covid infection, Scotland being named as having six out of ten Euro hotspots for Covid infection, ........ etc. Jason was withdrawn to save the awkward questions. This is new, modern Scotland and the First Minister was determined we were open for the Euros, whatever the consequences. Oh, and Cowan revealed Prof' Leitch will be back this coming Saturday. Convenient? What is inconvenient is the FM announcement of 2,000 capacity crowds irrespective of the size of a club's stadium. In the last four weeks in Scotland, we have had 12,000 for three matches at Hampden, several three thousand capacity FanZones and 17,000 at Murrayfield for the rugby. Ra Sellik have applied to Glasgow City Council for a 18,000 capacity for next week's Champions League qualifier. Of course, this should be applauded, ensuring everyone of their season ticket holders receive a ticket. How will Susan Aitken reply, what will Gerry Braiden advise, how does Jason Leitch see it and, will Gerry remain a very good friend of the show? Trolling? BBC Scotland have had an ongoing conversation on the best player ever to have graced the Euros. Of course parameters were quickly ignored and Pele, Messi and, Maradona became involved. Cosgrove is forthright, Diego is the man, "he took the Italian equivalent of Kilmarnock and made them champions single handedly". Excited, he told us to forget the morality of Maradona snorting cocaine, "it's what he produced on the pitch that counts". Hhmm, remember this is new, modern Scotland. Go to page 99 of this thread, sixth posting; over two years ago, Cosgrove offered mindfulness of Gazza. The Scots people had proposed Gazza for the Football Hall of Fame, presumedly because they believed what he produced on the pitch should count? Cosgrove objected on lifestyle and domestic violence, he was supported by the usual suspects and Gazza's name was withdrawn. Meaningful or Meaningless? Another garrulous contribution from Cosgrove. He posed the question, "Meaningful or meaningless, pre-season friendlies"? Now, as Rangers supporters we have had an amazing three year ride in Europe. Gerrard has lead the team through 45 games, losing only seven of them. The club has achieved spectacularly from the disaster of losing to Luxembourg's fourth best side just four years past. We have carried the Scottish standard and improved the national co-efficient markedly. Scotland have an extra club in European competition this season. We know, do not expect BBC Scotland ever to acknowledge this feat. This is why the majority of the pundits on the national broadcaster chose to ignore Steven Gerrard, in favour of St Johnstone's Callum Davidson as Manager of the Year. Cosgrove in particular has gone out of his way to ignore Rangers continuing Euro success; often affecting comment of not knowing who we were playing, or the result. Still, maybe just acceptable if you are reliant on BBC Scotland for an Ibrox score? On Sunday, Cosgrove read out, "Tranmere Rovers one Rangers nil". Let's hope Gerry Braiden remains a very good friend of the show and he appears as a guest. If they still want to hear from Rangers supporters, I would like to ask : The Cessnock Residents Association, where did you get the idea and how long did it take to brief thick as sh1t pouring from the neck of a bottle, Councillor David McDonald(SNP) on the health benefits of an active lifestyle as opposed to FanZone burgers and booze? Convenor Susan Aitken - After GCC refurbishing the shops on Saltmarket at Community Charge payers expense. Then deciding to ballot the units for the peppercorn rent of £1 per annum; how fortunate was Susan's Hibs supporting husband, Gordon Archer in emerging first from said ballot?
    9 points
  35. Exciting stuff! Lots of credit to @Rousseaufor doing another incredible job of administrating this, this season. Good luck to everyone who can still win!
    9 points
  36. Ra Hoops trudge off the hallowed turf a well beaten outfit. A fitting OF swansong for Lego and The Bravest Man in Football reverts to type and blames the referee for his side’s woes. Couldn’t happen to a more deserving bunch. We toyed with them at times and had a gear or two to slide into. Their rebuild job is sizeable to say the least, as you could argue that they need practically a whole team of new players. If Stevie, Ross and the board get it right in the summer, there is a great opportunity to put some daylight between us and them. Enjoy the rest of your day brothers and sisters, I know I will.
    9 points
  37. Steven Davis has played 57 times (for club and country) this season. What a hero. That is all.
    9 points
  38. As gutted as I am at tonight’s result , this season will go down in history as one of the greatest ever , we have not only seen off Terry Munro , but his general Lawell , captain lennon and private brown , as well as various other non descripts, we have performed above and beyond in Europe and the future is red , white and blue . We are only 3 years into this and have a squad worth millions , and a potential route into the Champions league , we need to stay sane and true , if we win the league next year we are guaranteed a direct spot . The opposition have no manager , are going to lose easily 10- 15 players, and we know from experience how difficult a job it is to bring in a few players into a disjointed club never mind an entire team . Enjoy your summer guys , 55 was delivered , end off .
    9 points
  39. Enough of this chancer. Slavia are party to the lies so are as racist as the lad who abused Kamara. To try and conflate an accidental injury with calling an opposition player a monkey is laughable. Now go away please.
    9 points
  40. Murder Polis! "Murder Polis" was a scream often heard on Music Hall stages. A character, usually the principle character shouted, "Murder polis" as an ironic comment on happenings. It was an exaggeration of mundane events, skewering those intent upon making a mountain out of a molehill. In west, central Scotland, a minor altercation such as a 'stairheid rammy'(dispute between tenement neighbours) was often encapsulated as, "it wiz Murder Polis". As Stuart Cosgrove lectures Rangers Supporters, Murder Polis is an example of comedic exaggeration. If we take our minds back five years past, the Scottish Cup final had a most exciting conclusion. An injury time corner awarded to Hibs saw the Edinburgh side's Skipper, David Gray header the game's winner. Mayhem ensued, we were informed several thousand Hibees invaded the pitch in a state of exuberance; we were also told by our own club, that the majority of the Gers players on the pitch, were assaulted. A dozen players' statements claiming being punched, kicked, and spat upon, did not wash. No Hibs supporter was convicted of assaulting a Rangers player. A lot of Bears exiting Hampden that day saw the Police sitting inside their vehicles, walking down Battlefield Road, I counted eight Police transits full of Officers flicking through their mobiles. Where were the Police whilst battles were erupting on the playing surface of the national stadium? Such wondering thoughts reached a crescendo later that night, as we realised the gravity of the match aftermath? The Sunday Mail provided an answer on it's front and several inner pages the next day. Journalist and Sellik season ticket holder, Jane Hamilton utilised a fellow season ticket holder, Calum Steele to tell the readership exactly where the Polis where? Calum Steele was also the General Secretary of the Scottish Police Federation. Calum had political ambitions, he was a cheerleader for the Nicola Sturgeon led Scottish Government. Calum thought Police Scotland was a good idea and supported Police Scotland's attempt to take over the British Transport Police officers based in Scotland. Calum told Jane of his members' experiences at the final whistle. Apparently, Rangers supporters aped the actions of Northern Ireland Loyalists, we threw our children directly in front of speeding Police vehicles urgently responding to events inside Hampden. Calum was in no doubt, this was a deliberate action to negate Police action. Now, Rangers supporters made a complaint to IPSO(Independent Police Standards organisation) and it was upheld. the Committee found the nespaper had taken insufficient steps to take care over the accuracy of the article. ie the Journo, Jane Hamilton had only quoted one identified source(Calum Steele) who was not present at Hampden, and quoted several unidentified sources(all police officers) who were present but only wanted to address general concerns reference Police actions. The conclusion was most damning, "the claims within the article had been published in such a way that they gave the significantly misleading impression that they had been corroborated by multiple independent witnesses". Eight days after Rangers secured the Premiership title, BBC Radio Scotland's Sportsound invited the current Heid Bummer of the Scottish Police Federation, David Hamilton to appear on the show. You see Calum Steele is now the President of EuroCOP, representing the interests of nearly 250,000 EU Officers. Calum recommended David Hamilton to succeed him in Scotland. We know Police Scotland is a politicised force and we know Nicola is only advised by folks who proffer advice she wants, needs to hear. Anyways, David Hamilton did not equivocate, Rangers and Rangers supporters are to blame. Again, we are a few weeks from a Holyrood election and a real political need existed to remove the Sturgeon/Salmond spat from the front pages. Sincerely, I wish those long term posters on this forum who support Nationalism, would return and debate why being seen to sink the boot into Rangers and Rangers supporters is a recurring theme to the Scottish Government? It has become a habit, even today the FM was speculating on Rangers supporters spreading Covid? David Hamilton is another Nationalist using his Designation to stick it on Bears. PQ are happy to oblige. David Hamilton is the brother of Duncan Hamilton, Alex Salmond's Solicitor. Duncan Hamilton is a former SNP MSP. David Hamilton's best mate is Angus Robertson, former leader of the SNP grouping at Westminster. David Hamilton constantly abuses his Twitter account with overtly political statements. David Hamilton's personal ambition is to be a SNP Parliamentarian. I could go on. Suffice to say, David Hamilton has worked out the path of least resistance in climbing the Scottish greasy pole to success. Both David Hamilton and Calum Steele are Murder Polis, and their comedic exaggeration is no laughing matter in new, modern Scotland.
    9 points
  41. 9 points
  42. This was always going to happen so enjoy the scenes instead of getting upset about it. It's not ideal and I can understand why folk might be annoyed but if I were 20 years old and lived in Glasgow, I'd be there too so I'm not going to be a hypocrite about it. It's like saying we shouldn't have ran on the pitch at Pittodrie 35 years ago. Let's get back into the real world.
    9 points
  43. A fantastic article by Rick Roberts. Well worth a read. https://uppingtheoutput.home.blog/2021/03/02/somebody-elses-problem-comment-on-the-sfa-independent-review/
    9 points
  44. Say it again, the RTV programme and presentation is head and shoulders above anything currently on offer anywhere in the UK. I have a huge amount of time for Tom Miller, his knowledge of the club is amazing, and he speaks well. We've had him at a few supporters club functions and he has been brilliant. However, Clive Tyledsley just sounds more professional. Over the season Neil McCann has shown he is the best pundit in the country and is in a different league from anyone else. He is always ably backed up and the different co-analysts have made RTV unmissable on home match days. No substitute for being at the games, but it has been exceptional all season thus far.
    9 points
  45. 10 games left to go, 6 of those at home. Net 15 point lead. Still unbeaten. Yes, we were utter gash today and we now know we can’t play a midfield 3 of Kamara Zungu & Aribo. Lesson learned. It also shows that taking Morelos & Roofe out the team is a big ask. Put the above 2 statements together and we didn’t show up. Tell me a team that would expect to win an away game without the quality of Davis, Jack, Arfield, Morelos, Roofe. Gerrard took a gamble today with his team selection to give important players a break with one eye on our ipcoming schedule, and it didn’t work out. He has earned that gamble with the lead we have established, so to give 2 points away is probably in the big picture worth it for us. 3 of our next 4 games are at home where we are 100% so let’s just put this down to a failed punt and move onwards and upwards.
    9 points
  46. Easter Road provides stiff test for Gerrard and Rangers as they make final push for title. Easter Road is not a ground new to the concept of being an important venue in Rangers’ attempts to stop Celtic winning ‘ten-in-a-row’. It was there on 29 March 1975 that Rangers secured the league title for the first time in nine attempts and stopped Jock Stein’s Celtic from amassing ten consecutive titles. Rangers arrived on that day knowing that if they avoided defeat the title they so badly craved would be theirs. However Eddie Turnbull had created a formidable Hibs side, which had actually mounted a title challenge of their own – sitting ahead of Celtic in second place towards the end of the season. Rangers went behind after 19 minutes thanks to a goal from Ally MacLeod. Hibs were dominating and Rangers struggled to get any rhythm to their game. To compound matters, Sandy Jardine missed a penalty after Bobby McKean was brought down by Hibs’ keeper Jim McArthur – hitting his kick against the base of the post. But then came the moment that every Rangers supporter craved. Sandy Jardine drove past two Hibs defenders, laid the ball out wide for Bobby McKean who sent in a great cross which Colin Stein bulleted in to the top corner with a fantastic header. With the 1-1 result came the title and an end to Celtic’s dominance of Scottish football. Although Rangers won’t have the opportunity to win the title on Wednesday night there is a feeling that victory here will be another huge step for Rangers in their attempts to replicate that feat of the 1975 side. As things stand, Rangers are 28 points – or nine games – away from confirming their status as the champions of Scotland. After the depths the club has plummeted in recent years, it is hard to believe that they have reached the single figure mark in terms of the number of wins required. But the mood at Ibrox is not one of celebration. If anything, Steven Gerrard and his players seem more focussed now than ever in maintaining the levels which have put them 23 points clear and a position of considerable strength. The demolition of Ross County at Ibrox on Saturday was latest statement of intent, and one that was so impressive it even had Staggies boss John Hughes gushing in his praise. “We were up against a top class team,” he said afterwards. “I hope all my players come back and say ‘that’s how to play football.’” But Easter Road is always a tricky venue for Rangers and Gerrard’s record there – one win in four attempts – shows victory in Leith is far from a foregone conclusion. The sides fought out a 2-2 draw there in September in a game which had a nasty edge to it. Rangers, rightly, felt aggrieved with a poor decision which allowed Christian Doidge’s offside equaliser to stand, then Ryan Porteous exchanged words with Alfredo Morelos, James Tavernier and Steven Gerrard at the end of the game. Regardless of how timid Hibs were in Saturday's defeat to St Johnstone in the BetFred Cup semi-final, Gerrard knows his side will need to be at their best if they are to secure all three points. “Easter Road is always a tough challenge and probably one of the toughest away fixtures you can get in the schedule”, the Rangers manager said at his pre-match press conference on Tuesday. “They are a good team, they've got good players and a good manager. I think our performances have been really good at Easter Road and maybe we haven't got the results we deserved. “We have had a couple of draws there where we have had double figures in terms of chances to win the game, so we have actually been a little bit frustrated and disappointed in the outcome of them.” One positive going into the game is the return of Ryan Jack to the squad. The midfielder made his comeback as a substitute against County on Saturday, managing to score within a few minutes of his introduction. Kemar Roofe has also returned to the squad and Scott Arfield’s rehabilitation continues well, which is good news for the Rangers boss as it increases his selection options at a time when he is looking to make that final push domestically, whilst preparing for the reintroduction of European football next month. For Hibs, the bright early season form has dipped somewhat. Two wins in their last six league games represents a miserly return for Jack Ross’s men. Add to that the aforementioned 3-0 defeat on Saturday to St Johnstone and you could easily describe their current run of form as poor. Not that anyone at Ibrox will view that as a reason to assume victory. On the field Gerrard continues to adopt a ‘one-game-at-a-time’ policy, but off the field plans are already afoot for the longer term with the announcements that Scott Wright has signed a pre-contract and will move to Ibrox in the summer, and that Kai Kennedy and Nathan Patterson have agreed extensions to their current deals. Gerrard appears keen to show there is a pathway to the first-team for academy players at Ibrox if they want it, with Patterson being the latest to benefit from this with a substitute appearance in the latter stages of Saturday’s win. “Ross [Wilson] and I have discussed our plan with Nathan for the incoming 18 months and have made our expectations clear”, said Gerrard. “Nathan is a strong example of our player pathway for those who are training with the first-team and in our Academy.” The expectation on any players stepping up through the ranks will be to be part of a squad and club that consistently wins titles. That has not been the case for a number of years. Victory on Wednesday will take Gerrard and Rangers a step closer to addressing that.
    9 points
  47. Pacific Quay Dubai-ety? It's early Sunday afternoon; party streamers adorn the corridors and the usual suspects pull on their party hats. Rangers have drawn at Fir Park and well being is in the ambience. Well's new manager, Graham Alexander has elevated emotions to immense well being, Itten's equaliser was offside. The acclaimed Claret and Amber CyberNats have struck again, briefing Alexander in the ten minutes intervening between the Referee's whistle and Sky Sports interview. Andrew Wilson was sated. As always, the PQ conclusion was delivered by Michael the Mouth. Lounging on the Sportscene settee wearing the big white sannies and a grin he condescended, "it was offside but you cannot blame an official for not seeing it". However, the glee did not endure, the streamers were pulled down, the hats removed, and the balloons deflated. Monday afternoon arrived and Neil Lennon sat down at the Presser in full John Wayne mode. Standing there, Neil levelled his weapon and squeezed the trigger on full rock'n'roll. He did not change magazines, kept firing, whilst acquiring one target after another. Pick the lead out of Andy Walker, Sky Sports, the media, the Scottish Government, Margaret Ferrier, the Scottish national team's Belgrade conga, ...... etc Amid explosions of hypocrisy and clouds of cordite, Neil stood up and left the room. I suspect for, "a little drink", it's allowed you know? There's a thing about FIBUA(Fighting in Built up Areas), all those high velocity rounds and detonations make you mutt and jeff, you cannot hear Peter's apology anymore? Chris McLaughlin reported events and took to his bed, collateral damage? Tom Anguish with party hat askew, stepped in and battered Neil. PQ Producers had lost sensory perception also, as the background murmurs of anti-Irish racism reached a crescendo. BBC Scotland's second channel, you know the one that regularly registers no viewers; has an evening news and current affairs show named, 'the Seven'. The Producer is Gerry Gay, he ensured a panel of Angela Haggerty, James Bundy(Chair of Scotland's Young Tories), and an Asian actor. Angela and James are both Sellik supporters, Angela called it out whereas James was a tad more reticent. It's Tuesday and Kaye Adams mid-morning radio show(Produced by Martin Connaghan) hosts a one hour phone-in on Neil's suppressive fire. A litany of Sellik bloggers added supporting fire and warned of continuing anti-Irish racism. It's Wednesday and the Editor of ra Sellik View has issued an apology for non publication today. Apparently, the fickle finger of Covid again? I mean, what did it have to report, photies of Dubai, Peter's apology, another two Sellik players catching Covid, Neil's rant, a meek nil-nil home draw against Livi', and Frank Cairney appearing in court again? PQ should call it out, ra Sellik View is unnecessary, BBC Scotland are keepers of ra Sellik flame.
    9 points
  48. Well, that's it then. 29 played for us and 28 for them. Last season set the precedent, null and void is now off the table!
    8 points
  49. You may recall that fitba' has a Joint Response Group, created to provide a cordinated response to Covid 19 and its affects. This group comprises of the following experts: Rod Petrie; Ian Maxwell; Neil Doncaster; and Dr John MacLean, the SFA's Chief Medical Consultant. These are permanent members of the Group. You may recall also that, following Dubai Daredevils FC's middle eastern adventure, and publication of photos, etc, indicating, pretty clearly, to this observer, at least, that SFA protocols, requirements,etc. may have been honoured as much in the breach as in the observance, Mr Maxwell publicly defended that club. He declared that it had had 'permission' of some -unclear- kind to go, but he either erred, or deliberately deflected (you choose), by failing to mention the apparent breaches of strictures by the happy campers. Subsequently, if memory serves, Maxwell suggested that the Compliance Officer (who may or may not be in post) "may" deign to look at the photographic evidence. To date we have heard the square root of, ahem, SFA about this enquiry, this inspection, whatever: we do not know if there is, currently, a Compliance Officer, whether this official has considered any evidence/behaviour, whether this official has opined on the matter, or referred it to a quasi-judicial committee, as seems to be the procedure. You will certainly remember Mr Neil Francis Lennon's intemperate and completely unseemly tirade against, well, just about everyone, really, at a Press Conference just the other day. The authorities have reacted to this with surprising -for them- alacrity, almost within hours, and have taken action. However, they have not charged Lennon with "Bringing the Game Into Disrepute", which he did, in excelsis; even the meanest intellect in the Gallowgate would consider such a slam dunk, however regrettable to him. The beaks, in the form of the Joint Response Group, have commissioned a "review" of facilities of every Club in Prem and Championship. This can only be in response to Lennon's unsubstantiated, and potentially slanderous, criticisms of St Johnstone and Hamilton Acas. both of whom have responded, the former gainsaying Lennon's rant, utilising both barrels, the latter being more measured. We must surely wonder at the speed of this action, compared to the administrative sloth displayed with respect to the misadventures of the club like no other in the Persian Gulf. Lennon opens his gob, lets loose his tongue, and the authorities jump to attention, and seemingly each incumbent kicks himself up his own backside, the quicker to respond to a reprehensible, wild, and inaccurate tirade. We must surely not rule out the possibility that those in charge of the game are looking for an excuse, no matter how slender, a reason, no matter how slim, a sliver of justification, to enable them to abandon the season. Next week. On the grounds of public health, etc. and on the inability of clubs to meet, and guarantee, whatever standards they deem appropriate, and necessary. Abandoning the league, in this manner, would -make any investigation into the the Arabian Nights irrelevant -possibly provide an excuse not to arraign Lennon on "Disrepute" charges. -royally fuck Rangers. As an extra, it would absolve Nikla and the Shinners of any blame for termination of the competition Sometimes paranoia is merely knowing what the bastards are up to.
    8 points
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