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  1. Easily our biggest problem position. Even more so than right back (which is our second biggest issue). Aird should never have been dropped. He wasn't fantastic in the last game. But he was significantly better than piss poor which is what Peralta usually provides. It may well be that it's not his fault as he's out of position and that's fine. But it doesn't change the fact that we have at least one other player who looks more effective there. Aird's performance in the previous game was significantly better than anything Peralta has shown up and again when he came on yesterday he added more than the Honduran. The only good thing I remember Peralta doing was one time he chased back with an attacker and won the ball back. I get really pissed off with people bashing the likes of Little more than his performances deserve but for me it is as clear as day, we are a better team with Aird (or one of the other options) playing instead of Peralta. I wouldn't be opposed to giving Peralta a few games at right back as I'm not convinced by Faure there either. We need to stop this habit of negative team selections though. The only reason I can think Peralta gets played is he is thought to be more solid, more defensively capable than an Aird or McKay. But if you watch him his positioning is poor, he isn't strong on the ball or in the challenge and he doesn't contribute fantastically to our defensive outlook. That's a myth. He was ridiculously easily bumped off the ball in the first half. Aird simply has to start next time out on recent performances. We look a much better, more balanced, creative and incisive team.
  2. ...........but an Old Firm cup clash could save the season for Scottish football BARRY believes Scottish Cup clash between Celtic and Rangers would give our game a much-needed shot in the arm. LET’S face it, the season is over. It ended on Tuesday night when AC Milan stuck three past Celtic. If we’re being honest, Scottish football is just killing time now until the summer holidays – and we’re not even in December yet. Celtic’s European campaign is over but they already have the Premiership in the bag. Hearts need a miracle to avoid relegation. Again, we knew they were goners before a ball was even kicked. The rest of the world might have one eye on Brazil next summer, with players bursting a gut to win a place at the World Cup. But not Scotland. We’ll be coming? Nope, we’ll be going nowhere. The truth is, on the pitch, Scottish football is done for the season. Unless something crazy happens and Rangers and Celtic come up against each other in the Scottish Cup. Now wouldn’t that give our game a massive shot in the arm? OK, I accept, I’m biased. The Old Firm derby was always my favourite fixture. I miss playing in it and I miss going to watch it. Most of all, I miss the fact that it was the game which captured the imagination of everyone in British football. And I do mean everyone. I’ve played in the Birmingham derby against Villa and I’ve heard others bang on about Real Madrid and Barcelona, AC Milan versus Inter and United-City in Manchester. Listen, I don’t care what anybody says, none of them beats the Old Firm game. The guys down here can’t get enough of it and I know that for a fact because since I’ve been at Birmingham and Blackpool I’ve been running busloads of them up and down to Glasgow every time there has been a derby at Ibrox or Parkhead. That’s all I’d hear: “Haw Fergie, when’s the next Old Firm game? Can you take us to it?” Some of them would have tickets for the Celtic end. Some of us would have tickets for the proper part of the stadium. And at the end we’d get back on the bus and rip each other to shreds all the way back down the M6. But I’m telling you, these guys were still raving about it weeks later. They’d say to me: “Man, I’ve never experienced anything like that in my life.” And I’d say: “There you go, that’s a real football game.” These same people always liked to look down their noses at the game in our country. I looked upon it as missionary work. Once they’ve been to one, they understand why it’s such a special game and they can’t get enough of it. So what everyone has to understand is that, to the rest of the world, Rangers and Celtic are Scottish football. End of story. And the quicker they are back battling it out on the park again, the better it will be for everyone. Listen, I might be playing a couple of hundred miles down the road these days but I can smell the poison in the air from down here. There’s a lot of bitterness and bad blood because of everything that has happened over the last couple of years. For the record, Rangers didn’t die. They are not a zombie, they are the same club they always were but I can understand why Celtic are scared of them. It’s because they always have been – and vice versa. It is just part of the DNA in this part of the world. It’s a way of life when you grow up on one side of the divide or the other. It’s why when you’re a youngster it’s the game you dream of playing in. I remember scoring my first goal against Celtic at Ibrox. You just needed to look at my face as I ran away celebrating to see what that meant to me. As someone who prides himself on being a moaning faced git, I never realised my smile could be as big as that. But no other game brings out such levels of emotion. That moment right there was what dreams are made of. If I was still at Rangers and Celtic were down the leagues, I would be distraught. I’d be desperate for them to come back to get those games back four times a season. And I’ll bet you it’s the same for Celtic’s players right now. Their season is all but over, it’s all about going through the motions now and getting themselves over the line in the league. But can you imagine the lift they’d get if they knew there was a derby game just a couple of weeks away? That would more than make up for the disappointment of going out of Europe. Believe me, I’ve been there. You get addicted to them. I remember my big brother telling me about his Old Firm debut, how he was a nervous wreck and how he heard this voice behind him saying: “Calm down son, keep it simple and you’ll get through it.” When he looked over his shoulder, he couldn’t believe it was Tommy Burns who was trying to talk him through it. Well that never happened to me when faced Celtic. All I heard was: “Ferguson, you wee b******, you’re getting it.” And that wasn’t just from the players – it was every time I went over to take a throw or a corner in front of their fans. But that suited me fine. That’s the way these games are meant to be and there’s nothing wrong in being a fierce competitor. I lost count of the number of times myself and Neil Lennon would be at each other’s throats but I’d worry if it was any other way. Yes, it can go too far at times, as I learned the hard way after I was sent off in a 6-2 defeat at Parkhead. You may remember it as the Battle of Bothwell Bridge because I ended up scrapping with Celtic fans after going out for a couple of drinks. It was obviously a huge controversy but the only thing I regret about that night was being stupid enough to go out in the first place. Lesson learned. I never went out after another Old Firm game. If I wanted a beer or a glass of wine, I’d shut the curtains and have it in my house. The feelings around that match were just too explosive to take the risk of going out. So yes, it’s a volatile fixture and yes, emotions will be running high the next time the two of them meet. But it’s going to happen one of these days so the sooner the better as far as I’m concerned. An Old Firm Scottish Cup tie? It just might save the season.
  3. http://neillennon.com/product/nl-gbnl-t-shirt-print/ Wonder what the GB stands for , Great Britain ? . I`m surprised there`s not one with a big "H" on the front . Unbelievable .
  4. I think the best thing about this long piece is the trailer, but anyway, here's your Sunday morning... When we got kicked out the SPL, one thing I thought would be good was that when international breaks came around, we at least would have a game to look forward to. The idea that we could have internationalists playing for us down amongst the dead men never occurred to me, and while these dreary weeks without even a competitive international game to watch are dull, they do at least give you a chance to look a the bigger picture. As usual, it's a dispiriting one, with the main news of note being the appointment of a raft of directors at Rangers - temporary or otherwise, time will tell - and celtc's continuing attempts to remove Rangers entirely from the game in Scotland. Booooring!!! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nsSbhdo0kQI So instead of waxing gloomical about the same old stuff I've groused above before, I shall this week offer a menu of possibilities for the future, things the game could engage with and maybe create a freshness about that stalest of products, the SPFL. These are all nicked from other sports, but that's no reason to dismiss them. Other sports are booming, thriving even, in these difficult financial times by innovating: we could learn from them. First up, a boring marketing/community bonding opportunity. BT show French Ligue 1 games, and you see every side has the regional tourist board advertised on their strips. Watching the Aussie football this weekend, I see they are the same. 'Do the CG experience!' exhorts the brightly coloured either Adelaide or Perth shirt (my Australian geography is not great). Given that there's plenty of space available on SPFL shirts, they ought to employ this device to get as much exposure (limited, I admit) for each club's region or city. Given how fast Scots clubs are declining, anything which re-engages them with their communities ought to be embraced. The current rugby world cup is attracting huge audiences in England, Wales & France; at the end of the game, both teams take a lap of honour, during which players pose for photos and sign autographs for fans. Perhaps this ought to be home fans only, and only then after a win, but it's an idea which would take an extra 10 or 15 minutes for the players and which would reinforce the bond between fan and player. And to any player who couldn't be bothered, they would have to shoulder the consequences should they dip in form! Cricket's 20/20 competition has brought in many innovations since it appeared about 10 years ago, nowhere more so than in the magnificent Indian Premier League. Features include an audio link between a fielder (usually the skipper) and the commentators while bowlers are walking back to their mark, or during a drinks break; while the heat doesn't require such a break in Glasgow very often, there's no reason why keepers could not be linked up by an audio tech behind the goal while their team are up the other end of the pitch - in cricket the interviewed player just breaks off should he have to, and goalies could do the same. Likewise, since there have been trackside reporters for decades, let's get them broadcasting the actual sounds of the sideline, rather than some mediated, filtered, cleaned up version. If this causes issues for managers or coaches who can't go 45 minutes at a stretch without effing or blinding, that is their problem - if they want TV money, they can behave to minimum live TV standards. This kind of technical innovation would allow the SFA or SPFL or whoever to approach broadcasters with a fresh product, offering superior access to players or staff, rather than a pale imitation of England's success. The IPL also require their grounds to build a little VIP booth, which is for competition winners rather than high heid yins, and include big comfy armchairs and fridges filled with Pepsi products. Practicalities might make this hard, but we are too much in the habit of saying 'we can't' when we need to be saying 'we have to'. Such competitions and prizes must be a money spinner as well as ideal product placement, an area we need to maximise in order to tempt what appears to be a highly reluctant commercial sector back to our moribund product. Joint managerial press conferences could be introduced, which ought to go some way to enforcing managers to act like adults. I think we can think of the one exception who would still stick out his petulant lower lip, and no doubt the media would be annoyed at losing their precious controversial moments, but the aim is to make the product better and financially healthier. Childish and whiny complaints will not bring in investment, a relatively mature product might. No doubt every reader will have ideas of their own. We all know that the game needs radical change at a purely functional level, especially the 4 games a season nonsense, but there's lots of room for tinkering around the edges and freshening up what is a sorely tired product. Just sometimes we need to turn our thoughts toward what we can do to make the game better, rather than the understandable constant harping on about what's wrong with it. Let's hear it for positive thinking, even just for a week!
  5. Scotland's claim to be fighting the cancer of sectarianism and hatred took a severe dent at the weekend. Perhaps sadly, the decision not to hold a one minute silence prior to the Ross County vs Celtic match, came as no surprise to many of us. Its embarrassing, unedifying and sickening to hear a one minute silence being disrupted and dishonoured. But there is something worse, far worse in fact - not holding such a ceremony at all. Because in failing to do so we have acquiesced to the morons, the bigots - we have handed them victory on a plate. Let the moronic and shameful actions of bigots within the Celtic support shame all the devils in hell - rather that than our country is forced to fail to remember the fallen whose sacrifice ensured our freedom from evil and tyranny. This morning I wrote to Ross County asking for an explanation into such an omission on Saturday and in particular who made the decision to dispense with the one minute silence - was it from someone in the club or from outside the club? The Ross County support have previously made their club aware of the importance of Remembrance Day and its significance within their support. http://www.north-sta...oldiers-667.htm Furthermore this is an issue which must ascend Old Firm rivalry and the often tit for tat churlish and pedantic tribalism. It is time for the Scottish press and media to stop avoiding the issue and to speak out - ignoring it will not make it go away. It is untenable and unacceptable that men who laid down their lives in order to defeat that which is unacceptable cannot themselves be remembered and honoured due to the actions and behaviour of some in our society which is in itself – wholly unacceptable.
  6. or, Got those Puritan Blues again! Plenty of other titles by the MenInBlack come to mind this morning after another night of dispiriting Scottish drunkeness/loutishness/hooliganism/complete innocence punished by heavy handed policing (delete according to level of delusion). Get a Grip on Yourself, Straighten Out, Hanging Around and maybe some advice our hoopy cousins should have listened to, Walk on By. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ohRbJJohv6Y But before we get any further on, I want to be clear that this is not a celtc-bashing piece. The target is Scottish people in general, although it may prove impossible not to let some shadenfreude through the editorial filter. When we went to Manchester, I was amazed, on my return, to discover I had been amongst not Bluenoses, as I had imagined, but thousands of undercover celtc fans, all secretly taking notes and making detailed reports on the goins-on. How else to explain the hordes who bombarded the phone lines and newspapers with denunciations of our bestiality, our anti-social behaviour, our boorishness? Having spent 8 hours in that dreary city as we lost the UEFA Final, I saw precisely no trouble. Zero. I did see loads and loads of steaming Bears, though, and I did have to pick my way through the ad hoc canals of pish which added a new, if not especially fragrant, item to the Mancunian tourist itinerary. It was just plain embarrassing. Like when you go on holiday and the wee dicks who are the most pished and the least able to handle it are always Jocks. When the Tartan Army visited Paris for the game in which James McFadden scored that wonder goal, Youtube was ablaze with many clips of boozed up fans celebrating before and after. It also showed the City of Lights ankle deep in empty cans and bottles...it was a clash between the free market, desperate to exploit visiting fans for their last Euro, and the freedom from responsibility, a trip abroad and the throwing off of any need to act like an adult. And now, when celtc descend upon Amsterdam, it looks (and probably smells) much the same. And no doubt tonight the phone ins will be hot with callers either berating the police for beating the fans or berating the panellists for not berating the celtc fans. I won't be listening, for there's nothing to be gained on that ground. Either putting the boot in (metaphorically) or absolving the celtc support of any blame is equally useless: what's needed is a collective, society wide frown upon people aged between 15-75 staggering around blind drunk just because they have travelled a few miles to a football game. I'm not calling for some Calvinistic temperance pledge here: I'm not teetotal. But I'm 42 and I know how much to have and when to stop. Anyone who likes football and doesn't know that, in 2013, if you are part of a big crowd which is pished up the cops are going to go in at some point is deluded. It always happens. The level of reporting may vary, but it always happens. Police forces, especially larger municipal forces, are conditioned to treat such crowds as the enemy and given the state various Scottish clubs and the national team's fans have left behind them, who can blame them? The bottom line is that if we carry on treating European away days as a gigantic piss up we have only ourselves to blame when the coppers wade in. Any media excuses over the next few days will do nothing other than guarantee it will happen again, and again, and again. But the day the likes of the desperately proletarian Keith Jackson come out and decry excessive drinking in a footballing context there will be two blue moons in the sky: despite not actually being a manual worker, he and his like for some reason feel a desperate need to come across as connected to the horny handed sons of the soil who attend the game in Scotland. Never mind that Scotland has been, for decades, a service economy. Let's play up to the hard working, hard drinking stereotype because that will make us more manly. Like some Bluenoses who automatically class anyone who doesn't buy the LUMP mentality as a handwringer, a wuss. It's pitiful and immature, no better than playground name calling, but when you have the power of the media behind you it is also dangerous. Sad to say, the only media person who might actually oppose such behaviour would be Graham Spiers, but he would be unlikely to risk his special pet status amongst the hooped fanbase to actually have the courage of his convictions and speak out. We shall see, I suppose. In the end, it's pretty black and white. You can go to Europe's famous footballing cities, get hammered on booze and then get hammered by the cops. Or, you can go, have a few drinks, and come home without a cracked skull. It's a simple, easy message and one which any media with an ounce of social responsibility would have been hammering home years ago. No it doesn't rule out being attacked by cops on the edge of a nervous breakdown but it does provide you with a hell of a better defence is you are actually able to stand up while being attacked. Outside of ourselves, who are as we know an irredeemable collection of neanderthal knuckle draggers who ought to be put out of our misery asap, Scotland likes to think of its' football fans as a jolly lot, welcome everywhere and ambassadors for the nation. Short of putting forward The Krankies, Kevin Bridges and Craig Whyte I can't think a less funny line up, and the sooner we start reinforcing this message the sooner scenes like last night will be a thing of the past. Something better change, indeed.
  7. Afternoon Gentlemen, Listen I'm a bit of a history nerd at times and I like my Football tactics, so I've always been fascinated with a lot of the older formations and philosophies. Are any of you, with respect, old enough to remember the above formation ? If so I'd appreciate the info. I've read a few articles online about the games that featured the 2,3,5 but they don't really tell you much other than it was engineered to be more geared towards team work instead of individual flair. I'm hoping to replicate it on the up coming Football Manager 14, but before that I'm going to need some of the roles explained to me etc etc.
  8. The last time I wrote a match preview I talked of the need to install a football philosophy. At that time i talked of playing like Barcelona, off playing a high defensive line and pressing the ball high up the park. I was therefore delighted when we played Stenhousemuir at Ibrox recently to see us playing a high line, indeed on several occasions Moshni could be seen urging the defense forward to the half way line. We reaped the rewards of this and ran out 8 - 0 winners with stenny never really making it out of their own half for long spells. So imagine my surprise when on Saturday i tuned into el classico to watch Barca playing classic Walter smith tactics. Everyone behind the ball, working hard to retrieve it then hitting on the break and very impressive they were. Off course Walter learned this from Italian football. Southampton are having a great start to the season playing a high pressing game and of course pep has Byern starting to play this way. I guess this just proves that the style of football it's self is perhaps less important than the team working hard, being organised and having talented players. so far this season we have been working harder and have added some talented players. Hopefully more of the same tomorrow night will see us through to our first ever Ramsdens cup final apparently at Easter Rd. I don't expect the team to vary much on what seems to be allys favored line up. :rf::jig: :ap::ib::lm: :jd: Perhaps only little/clark is debatable. Me personally i would like to see perlata at right back and temps come in at right mid to see how that goes as i think we lack some pace and width, plus foster is poor.
  9. For your Sunday morning consideration. Just like the best newspaper keech, brought to you the night before! Unseeing seems to be the order of the day, alright. From the lights going out at Ross County, to the media blackout of celtc's 'Oranje Bastard' ditty, to media and SFA Prophets of a New Dawn, proclaiming Great Days Ahead. Those of you who played the music above will no doubt be reflecting on the stirring, rousing tune which inspired so much hope, fear and ultimately despair, as the Soviet Union sank from revolution to eventual collapse in 1991. I imagine those with no time for the doctrine of Marx and Engels can concede that, coming from Tsarist Russia, it was a noble attempt, even if it failed in gallons of the blood of its own people. What does this have to do with Rangers, I hear you ask? Hunners. Images of the old Soviet Union rushed back into my mind last week when the Pacific Quay CSC, in a move of unparalleled daftness even for them, decided to ask Jim Spence to cover the latest Rangers story; and then Josef Vissaronovitch Rhegan himself emerged on the back on some decent results for the national team to laud his latest useless initiatives. Perhaps Spence was being tested to see if the he could actually manage to report on Rangers without being inaccurate; perhaps it was to punish the listeners by making them listen to his awful ,stuttery, regional accent more than usual; perhaps it was an 'up you' to the Rangers fans who apparently lined themselves up with those other emblems of totalitarianism, the Nazis and the Stasi, by invoking the feared, Gestapo like tactic of emailing the BBC complaints department. Many of the survivors of world war two have, now you think about it, mentioned in their memoir the resemblance between the BBC and the authoritarian regimes they had help destroy, so this should come as little surprise. Who can forget Airey Neave's classic 'Colditz? A Holiday Camp Compared to the Beeb', or Douglas Bader's 'No Legs is Nothing Compared to No Freedom at the BBC'. Anyhow, those images of communist days. As a young leftie, I often watched with open jaw as representatives of the USSR came on the screen to tell us how everything there was wonderful and the western media were lying. That this was so obviously untrue left one wondering what it was they were trying to do; and the obvious answer was, of course, that they were trying to cover up the truth. Those old enough to recall the Chernobyl disaster will perhaps also remember the special, English language edition of Pravda which was on sale in Britain, and which sought to limit the consequences of this aged nuclear reactor blowing up to roughly akin to those of Kirk Broadfoot microwaving his breakfast. No-one was fooled. All the more nostalgic then, that Soviet Jim Spence should wind up his piece last week with a heartfelt op ed about how wonderful things were in the Scottish footballing garden, and that only Rangers were kept inside, locked in a permanent argument with its mum and not being allowed out to join in. Pravda got nothing on you, boy. No doubt the fans of Dunfermline & Hearts, going through their own miseries, felt a trifle piqued at being lumped in with the everybody happy! gang. It's unlikely many premiership treasurers are licking their lips at the thought of Hamilton winning the championship and bringing the bonanza that is the Accies travelling support (last home games, attendances 1,113 against Raith and 1,059 against LIvingstone) to the behemoth that is the SPFLP. Big Money!!! Kilmarnock fans, fighting their board to see who can hurt their club the most, might take issue with his comments; it goes on and on. Aberdeen close stands; the game is vibrant, apparently. celtc hide empty swathes of seats with banners; never been better! If only Pravda still existed, a job would be made for Spence instantly. The lights going out at Ross County during their game against ICT the other week says it all - if you don't want to see it, you don't need to see it. You can't help but think of Zaphod Beeblebrox's 'danger glasses' in The Hitch-Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy, which black out whenever danger threatens. Cool facewear, and great writing, but no basis to plan the future of the game. And what about us? A tartan version of Trotsky, exiled to the Mexico that is the fourth division, one can sense the ice-picks being readied lest we attempt to get back to what it known, apparently without irony, as the top of Scottish football. This expression seems to me to be akin to trying to find the top of your arsehole, but let that pass. The terror among some media commentators lest someone with money to invest get inside the doors of Ibrox is palpable; Rangers, the betamax to the SPFL's VHS, the Oracle to it's Teletext, the Scott Brown, if you will, to their Mezsut Ozil, are going to face some serious barricades which are being hastily erected to hold us back. Red Rhegan has broken his recent and extremely welcome media silence to re-assure the fans of other clubs that should Dave King try to get a job at Rangers, well, blimey, he will certainly have a good look at it and by gum, there will be no hiding places! Only the best of people for us! No doubt we'll all sleep better tonight knowing Stewart is looking out for us. Only a churl would recall his total lack of action when not one but two shysters bought our club, and conclude that he's more afraid of Rangers getting themselves organised than he is of any more damage to the club. We certainly have our problems and some our fans are probably as blinkered as Spence on some issues. But at least we don't pull the commissar's cap down over our eyes and insist that paradise is just around the corner. The bad news for Rhegan and his media mouthpieces is that our eyes are well and truly open now...we see you, and we know what we're looking at.
  10. How many truly World Class players have played for the club? Jim Baxter for one. Any others?
  11. Folks, What are your favourite memories of Dutch Rangers players of the past, both Advocaat era and non-Advocaat era? Favourite Dutch player (or players), combinations of players in the team, favourite games? Just basically looking for fond memories, anecdotes, memories of a favourite game (or games) and any specific stuff you care to mention! A quick recap of some of the Dutch players: Dick Advocaat era: Ronald de Boer, Michael Mols, Giovanni van Bronckhorst, Artur Numan, Bert Konterman, Fernando Ricksen. Outwith the Advocaat era: Frank de Boer, Theo Snelders, Ronald Waterreus, Pieter Huistra, Peter van Vossen. (If I've missed any players please chime in!)
  12. http://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/rangers/rangerscomment/peralta-needs-quiet-word-in-ear-139014n.22389257 I seem to remember him going down easily however that's a completely different issue from diving altogether. Maybe I'm wrong did he dive? Even if he did I'm pretty sure I never seen a column about Sutton, Petrov, Moravcik, Stokes on 'that' penalty that the greek tranny missed ........... the list is endless. Who needs enemies.
  13. Anyone had to do this before? How did you find it compared to a "normal" interview?
  14. Have had the third kit about a month and the sponsor is now just peeling off. I can't say I'm overly surprised. What slightly annoys me is in the past 20 years I've owned tonnes of football tops ranging from teams all over the world and it's only ever our tops that seem to fall apart. Notably our top in 03/04 (widely documented as a piece of shite and frequent refunds) and this years. There's been other tops that have had issues but can't recall the years. The irony is I washed my 13 year old Brazil home shirt (was 13 when I got it but it still fits lol) in the same wash and the Brazil top looks brand new while our top is falling apart.
  15. Lifted from FF: ''Thats two younger lads now both under 19 had police come to their doors early morning to arrest them for singing said song. I was also told by a polis up in Ayr that FoCUS are watching out for people singing this now due to the YCV reference''. Just a heads up.
  16. taken from FF I wrote to HRH Charles, Prince of Wales, extending to him an invitaion to the RSEA Dinner and informing him of the magnificent work done by the Rangers Fans for Erskine, the Charity for Ex Service Personnel of which he is Patron I notice he doesnt decline the dinner invite in the letter, so fingers crossed - lol this letter is a thank-you to every single Bear who has helped Erskine via the RSEA or otherwise anyone who has ever bought a badge, walked the walk, sponored someone else, danced, zip-slided, abseiled, cycled, treked, quizzed, golfed, kicked a baw, booled a bool, entered a raffle, bid a bid, bought a polo, calendar, hat, scarf, keyring, tie, tee shirt, book or attended a dinner, modelled, donated a prize or cash, downloaded a song, rattled a can or bucket and to those who put Xmas parcels together. It goes beyond FF and extends across VB, RM, DTB, CRO, TRS, (and others I may not even be aware of) facebook, loyal orders, RSC's, Pubs and various masonic Lodges and many people within Rangers Football Club the dinner will see us through £500,000 Please accept my sincere thanks WATP users of other forums please pass on my gratitude in a similar manner to your members
  17. Neil Doncaster has stressed that he remains comfortable with the situation where the Scottish Professional Football League is still to find a title sponsor as the season enters its first break for international matches. The new league set-up has been in operation for more than a month, and the reconstruction was formally completed at the end of June. The fact that the SPFL continues with no title sponsor has provoked concern in some circles. Doncaster again insisted that it is not a significant problem. He also played down yesterday the extent to which finance from a title sponsor impacts on clubs when compared to revenue brought in from broadcasting deals already in place. The chief executive pointed out that he is content to take his time “to find the right sponsor, rather than the first one that comes along”. The recent controversy surrounding Wonga’s sponsorship of Newcastle United, which led to striker Papiss Cisse briefly threatening to refuse to wear a shirt promoting a payday lender, highlighted how an association with certain brands can lead to problems. Doncaster wants a sponsor that enhances the image of professional football in Scotland. “It’s clearly important that we get the right sponsor rather than do something quickly,” said Doncaster, before adding that “we shouldn’t get carried away” with the notion that the financial guarantees from having a title sponsor in place would transform the Scottish game. The deal the Clydesdale Bank struck was worth £8 million a year to the Scottish Premier League when originally signed in 2007. No figure was publicised when the contract was extended in 2010. The association between the bank and Scotland’s top flight ended last season. Irn Bru’s sponsorship of the Scottish Football League – worth in excess of £3 million over the course of the last three years – also expired earlier this summer. “It’s certainly the current focus but we shouldn’t get carried away by the amount of money that it contributes to the game,” said Doncaster. “The vast majority of money that goes into the game through the SPFL comes through broadcast rights – something like 90-95 percent of the entire pot and all of that is secured already. “So you are talking about something that is important, of course, but it’s not fundamental to the finances of the game.” Doncaster added that the SPFL is “flexible” when it comes to the specific details of a sponsorship deal, and whether all four leagues would need to be sold as one sponsorship package or could be separated. “We’ll be led very much by what sponsors would want to do,” he said. “There is an attraction for sponsors in having all 42 clubs, in having one sponsorship which covers the whole of the country – but that would be led by their requirements when we talk to them.” Doncaster insisted that securing new sponsors is not the only consideration at present. “I think it’s important that we continue to work hard on a number of different fronts, whilst remembering that we have two key roles at the SPFL,” he said. “One is to run a fair competition and the other is to commercialise that competition. “That has been a successful commercialisation to date, largely based on broadcasting. Of course sponsorship is important and work on that will continue but it will be done when it’s done.“It must be a partner that’s fit for the game and fit for the SPFL in terms of the image that it projects. We’ve had a number of expressions of interest from a number of different parties, but it’s important that we have the right brand for the SPFL at such an important time in its development. That’s worth waiting for.” Doncaster was speaking at a Murrayfield Stadium event held to encourage safe driving on Scotland’s country roads. The SPFL and the Scottish Rugby Union have joined forces to help promote a campaign spearheaded by former Formula 1 driver David Coulthard. Doncaster has welcomed the new spirit of cooperation that now exists between the SPFL and the Scottish Football Association, following Celtic chief executive Peter Lawwell’s appointment to the main board of the SFA. “The relationship between the SPFL and the SFA is a good one and I think a much better one since the reconstruction’s completion on the 27th June,” he said. “It’s important that the SPFL is properly represented at the Scottish FA main board. We have one representative from the Professional Game Board and now Peter has been elected unopposed by the seven members of that body. “So we are very pleased to have effective representation at the main board following [former chairman] Ralph Topping’s excellent contribution to date. “I think there’s a genuinely collegiate atmosphere at the moment between the Scottish FA and the SPFL and that certainly makes it easier for both bodies to do the best that they can in their different spheres.” http://www.scotsman.com/sport/football/spfl/neil-doncaster-relaxed-over-lack-of-spfl-sponsor-1-3076595
  18. http://www.rangers.co.uk/news/headlines/item/5195-rangers-announce-annual-results
  19. LET me start with a confession: I like Monster Munch. In fact, I’m particularly fond of pickled onion. There you go, I just wanted to get that out in the open because something happened at Forfar at the weekend that made my mind drift back to one of the most controversial periods of my career. And, yes, I realise there were a few. But there was nothing quite like the time when Paul Le Guen told me I was finished at Rangers and people tried to make it out it was over a bag of crisps. For those who don’t remember, sit back and let me explain. We’ll start last Sunday at Station Park where Rangers struggled to a 1-0 win and got slaughtered for their display. I didn’t see it but by all accounts it was dire and a throwback to last season when Ally McCoist had a hard time of things in the Third Division. But there was one big difference between Sunday and the worst days of the previous campaign when so many points were dropped at places such as Peterhead, Stirling and Berwick. The difference was Rangers won. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying for a second there’s any excuse for a team like Rangers to be struggling to win at Forfar. There isn’t. What I am saying, however, is that even though they had a bad day at least they left the place with three points. That wasn’t always the case last season and, to me, it’s a sign some of the club’s old standards are on the way back. Standards that I was raised on. Standards that Rangers were built on. Standards that I thought might disappear for good during Le Guen’s time in charge seven years ago. A lot has been made about my relationship with the Frenchman. I know there are Rangers fans out there who still think I undermined him or stabbed him in the back. So I’d like to use this column to set a few things straight. First, you have to understand the way I was brought up as a kid working under John Brown and John McGregor. They kept things simple: At Rangers nothing less than three points is ever acceptable. Yes, they wanted us to play well and encouraged us to express ourselves but the most important lesson they taught us was that you’ll never cut it as a Rangers player if you pull that shirt on and think it’s OK to lose. That was driven into my head every day of my young life until it became a state of mind and a way of life. So yes, I’ll hold my hands up right now. To this day I am guilty of wanting to win every game I play. I know I run around with my wee face all screwed up, moaning at everyone and everything but it’s only because I care so much about winning. To me, that’s just the Rangers way – if you don’t care if you lose or draw then you’ve no business being there. And that’s was the root of my problem under Le Guen. The truth is, the longer it went on the more I was struggling to recognise the Rangers I had grown up with. Under Le Guen, it was becoming acceptable to drop points on a Saturday. In fact, it was becoming the norm. And I admit I just couldn’t get my head around it. Now, people have their own opinions about what went on between us. But I was there, I know what went on inside that dressing room and I’d challenge him to deny or contradict anything I’m about to tell you. Week after week I walked off the pitch to be told: “It’s OK, let’s stick together and just move on to the next game.” That’s alright after one bad game. Or maybe if a team is going through a wee sticky patch. But not EVERY week. After EVERY embarrassing result. It was a gradual build-up, over weeks and months. His shrug-of -the-shoulders attitude was eating away at me inside because this was the club I loved. I was the Rangers captain and these results were killing me. It was humiliating. And the worst bit of it was, I could see it rubbing off on others until there were players sitting in that dressing room who didn’t seem to care if we won, lost or drew. The standards I had grown up with were disappearing. I held my tongue as best I could but it was only a matter of time until I eventually snapped. That day came on December 27, 2006, at Inverness. We had been winning 1-0 but ended up losing 2-1. I think we slipped to fourth or fifth in the table. I mean, it was getting ridiculous. And what did I hear when I walked into that dressing room? “It’s OK. We must stick together.” That was it, I just couldn’t listen to it any more. So I said: “Aye, we must stick together. But it’s not f****** OK that we’ve lost another three points. What part of that don’t you get? This is Glasgow Rangers you are working for.” I admit I lost the head. I was just so angered by the lack of passion. I couldn’t look round any more at people who didn’t care if Rangers won or lost. Yes, maybe I was guilty of letting my emotions boil over. Maybe I lost my cool in that dressing room on that day. But I just couldn’t take any more of it. But that was it. It wasn’t as if I asked the guy outside for a square-go. I put my hand on my heart and say, I never caused that man one problem. I never once knocked down his door. Yes, OK I might have eaten the occasional packet of Monster Munch which might have been against his nutritional rules but come on? Listen, I’m all for players looking after themselves and eating well. But no one is going to tell me a packet of pickled onion now and again is going to take years off your career. It’s nonsense. Is that what people mean when they say I undermined him? Honestly, I don’t know where all that comes from and it makes me angry just thinking about it. It was all I read in the papers or heard on the phone-ins. I swear none of it was true. I was guilty of one thing – being passionate about my club and going a bit daft at Inverness. But I had no idea the price he wanted me to pay for it until I walked into Murray Park a few days later to prepare for an away game at Motherwell. His assistant, Yves Colleu, shouted for me and I went into the manager’s office and Le Guen began to speak to me like I was some sort of alien. I wasn’t even allowed to sit down. He just told me I’d never play for the club again and to leave the building. I was in a daze. I got my bag and walked to my car without saying anything to the other lads. I got a few hundred yards down the road before I pulled in and realised what had just happened. I was shattered. As things turned out, it was Le Guen’s Rangers career that was over. Very soon after that, Walter Smith was back in charge. And overnight Rangers got their standards back. That’s why the result at Forfar pleased me the other day. And put me right in the mood for a packet of my favourite crisps.
  20. I would like to ask fellow fans their feelings on the quality of football kits from Puma as opposed to the kits from Nike and Adidas , me i think the Puma kit is pretty dire and how long are we tied to this company .
  21. http://www.vanguardbears.co.uk/article.php?i=102&a=one-man-and-his-dog I know this group divides opinion for one reason and another but I think this is excellent work.
  22. STV - 12 September 2013 00:01 BST Rangers midfielder Ian Black will go before a Scottish Football Association committee on Thursday to answer accusations of betting against his own club on three occasions. The former Inverness CT and Hearts player is accused of putting money on his team to not win matches between March 4, 2006 and July 28, 2013. Black is also accused of betting on a further ten games in which the club he was playing for were involved in, as well as betting on a further 147 games not involving his team. It is not known which specific fixtures he is accused of placing bets on which involved the clubs he was registered with. The Scottish FA have stated that there is no evidence to suggest the player acted in a manner or influenced proceedings during a game which led to him making money. STV understands the most recent match Black bet upon was Rangers' tie with Albion Rovers in the Ramsdens Cup on July 28, 2013. Rangers won the game 4-0. It is also understood that the player's actions came to light through his use of a Ladbrokes phone account. Footballers registered in Scotland are prohibited by the Scottish FA from betting on any football match. If found guilty, players can be fined from £500 to £1,000,000 and can be either suspended or expelled from playing professional football. They are also not allowed to "behave in a manner, during or in connection with a match in which the party has participated or has any influence, either direct or indirect, which could give rise to an event in which they or any third party benefits financially through betting". The Scottish FA however have made clear there is "no evidence" to suggest Black has breached the second rule. When the allegations were first made, a Rangers spokesperson said: "The club is aware of the SFA's notice of complaint and are currently investigating the matter." http://news.stv.tv/west-central/239202-rangers-ian-black-to-go-before-sfa-committee-over-betting-claims/
  23. IT IS unlikely that Ian Black is going to sit down any time soon – if at all – and explain what he was thinking about that day he struck a bet on East Stirlingshire to get a draw against his own team, Rangers, at Ochilview on April 27. That’s the first question you’d like to ask him. Not about the 159 other bets he placed that contravened the SFA’s betting rules, but that one wager, as part of an accumulator, on Scottish football’s most hopeless senior club getting a draw against the newly crowned Third Division champions with Black himself at the heart of their midfield on the day If you leave to one side the fact that any such betting on football was against the SFA rules, how did Black come to the conclusion that that was the wager he wanted to place? What weird rationale made him opt for a draw? East Stirlingshire were not only bottom of the league but they hadn’t had a draw – not to mind a win – in any of their previous eight games. In fact, they ended up losing their last ten games of the season conceding 39 goals in the process. In the games leading up to Black’s bet on a stalemate, East Stirlingshire had lost 5-1 to Queen’s Park (the week before the Rangers match), lost 2-1 to Annan, lost 6-0 to Peterhead, lost 2-0 to Clyde, lost 2-1 to Montrose, lost 2-0 to Berwick and lost 9-1, yes, 9-1 – to Stirling Albion. Where was the form-line that suggested they were capable of holding Rangers? East Stirlingshire had conceded 101 goals in their 41 games leading up to Rangers match. Black had already played against them three times that season. On none of those occasions was there the slightest bit of evidence that the worst team in Scottish senior football was capable of getting a draw against Ally McCoist’s side. In the first match, Rangers beat them 5-1. In the second, Rangers won 6-2. In the third, Black’s team won 3-1. Three games and an aggregate score of 14-4 and then Black goes for a draw? Does that make sense? Black has been found guilty of betting on football, and betting against his own team, but is there no suggestion of anything more sinister, such as deliberately underperforming in that East Stirlingshire game in order to make the draw a little more likely. Black scored the goal that put Rangers 3-2 ahead, thereby helping to sink his own bet. In that regard, he was a bookmakers’ dream. A punter who deliberately stymied his own wager? That’s nirvana for a bookie. All of this is weird and demands explanation but we won’t get it because Black won’t talk (not for a while at any rate, you’d have to imagine) and the judicial panel won’t publish their findings. None of this is helpful. Here is a footballer who has admitted to betting against his own team and yet, effectively, he will serve the same suspension as a player found guilty of a bad challenge. On Friday, Rangers manager Ally McCoist said that he had no issue with Black or his betting and that, too, is unsatisfactory. How could the Rangers manager not have an issue with one of his players taking the field having had a bet on his team not to win the match he was playing in? McCoist’s words are actually a betrayal of sorts. Imagine McCoist trying to explain himself to a Bill Struth or a Scot Symon? Imagine those gentlemen trying to get their head around this business of Black betting on Rangers drawing with East Stirlingshire before going out to play against them? Amid all the hoopla surrounding the Black case, there was one point on which nearly everybody was agreed and that was that a player should never bet against his own team. Black has admitted to doing precisely that at the end of last season. The Rangers man has been fined, in essence, little more than a week’s wages and is banned, in effect, for three games, the same punishment doled out to Dundee United’s Gavin Gunning a few weeks ago for having a sneaky kick at Virgil van Dijk of Celtic. At times like this the easy thing to do is to give the SFA a shoeing for a verdict that makes little sense to most people but what has to be remembered is that it was their judicial panel which handed down this sanction on Black and that that panel is independent. It stands alone but it is the SFA that must deal with the fallout. Three matches, with seven more suspended, does not amount to zero tolerance of players’ gambling on football. Players gambling isn’t really the nub of the Black affair, of course. Players have a punt. Managers have a punt. Many people in the game have a punt on football even though they are not supposed to. But they don’t bet on their own team not winning. That’s crossing the line. Quite frankly, you won’t stop players betting. It’s instructive to note that Black’s punishment only relates to betting on games involving the club he was registered with at the time. For more than a hundred other breaches, all admitted by the player, he received nothing more than a slap on the wrist. What is the point of a rule if there is no sanction when it is broken multiple times? From the outset of this case, the major question was whether Black had bet against his own team in a match in which he was playing. He did and he deserved a bigger sanction than the one he got. He certainly deserved harsher words than his manager was prepared to offer in public. McCoist didn’t have to sack Black, although Rangers fired Fran Sandaza for a lot less under the pretence of disloyalty. Isn’t betting against your team the very essence of disloyalty? We still don’t know why he did it. That’s the truly mystifying part. The panel discounted match-fixing and ruled out any notion that he tried in any sinister way to influence the game to bring up his bet. Once he stops breathing his sighs of relief at such a lenient punishment and the undeserved support of his employers which followed in its wake, Black might want to explain what he was thinking. The bet, as part of the accumulator, flew in the face of form and logic and integrity, it was against the rules of the game and against the spirit of the dressing room. For breaking the one rule that most football people (McCoist excluded, it seems) say cannot be broken, Black will serve a three-game ban. Hard to fathom, just like his bizarre wager at Ochilview that day.
  24. seen this on facebook Just got back from a weeks leave in Sorrento, while mooching around the shops with the wife I was stopped by a young lady who admired my Rangers t shirt. She was an American from Atlanta who was a fellow Ger fan. We got chatting how come I supported Rangers & i asked her in return, why she did? "Oh my uncle Walter used to manage the club" !! we spent the next hour or so chatting about the club, the one thing that came out was that Uncle Walter doesn't do politics hence he appears to distance himself from certain individuals every now & again and wont be used as a pawn. His only interest is for the good of the club.
  25. Deal till the end of the season apparently... @RFC_Official: #Rangers can confirm tonight they have signed 34-year old goalkeeper Steve Simonsen until the end of the season: http://t.co/FFOrJANCaM @RFC_Official: .@andymitch8 has also gone out on loan to @AnnanAthleticFC & Scott Gallacher has joined @AirdrieoniansFC on loan: http://t.co/FFOrJANCaM
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