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Archive for the ‘football’


The sleepy watchmen 347

Posted on November 04, 2018 by

We’ve been through all the papers and there’s still absolutely no Scottish politics news, so we’re going to take a moment out for one of our brief but always-popular tangential forays into the world of football. All the usual disclaimers apply.

Because the parlous state of current Scottish journalism can’t just be observed on the politics pages, with all their partisan spin, quarter-truths and hackery. Sometimes you get a better idea of it by stepping back and looking at the broader picture, and rarely is that picture more clear than when it’s a picture of “Rangers”.

The Daily Record devoted only a tiny corner of its back page on Thursday to the club’s latest financial reports, and the bulk of the text was devoted to Dave King enthusing about what great news it all was.

Pretty much every other piece of coverage to be found in the Scottish press was the same, shrugging the figures off as of no notable significance and all someone else’s fault anyway (in this case former manager Pedro Caixinha, even though one must suppose he didn’t spend any more money than the board told him he could), and we waited in vain for any in-depth analysis in the Sundays.

And we couldn’t help thinking we’d been here before.

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The Old Billy Boys Club 179

Posted on September 01, 2018 by

While ploughing through hundreds of pages of hysterical drivel about Alex Salmond in the Scottish press this week, extra-alert readers may have also been aware of quite a stushie going on between the SNP-controlled Glasgow City Council (GCC) and a group of representatives and fans of Scotland’s newest professional football club The Rangers FC, such as Tory list MSP Adam “WATP” Tomkins (pictured below).

And it’s quite the alliance.

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Sliding-out doors 187

Posted on July 12, 2018 by

Most of Scottish Twitter has been enjoying itself greatly for the last few hours after England’s exit from the World Cup, but scattered in amongst the amusing memes has been a fair amount of angst about victors Croatia – a nation of 4 million people – being in the final when Scotland once again failed to qualify.

And while we’ll more than happily listen to any amount of criticism of the unbelievably incompetent, hapless clowns who’ve been in charge of the SFA/SPL/SPFL for the last several decades, that judgement is a bit harsh on the players and coaches and the nation as a whole. Because there really hasn’t been much in it.

Scotland’s qualification for World Cup 2018 hinged and ultimately faltered on a split second and a single badly-chosen pass in stoppage time.

That really is how close it was.

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Black-Is-White World 111

Posted on July 01, 2018 by

One of the uglier facets of opposition to the hugely-popular but now-repealed Offensive Behaviour (Football) Act was the 100% uniform stance against it in the Scottish press. Despite the Act being backed by a large majority of voters across every demographic and political divide, not one print or broadcast journalist ever stood up for the public.

The reason, of course, is that bigots (and lurid stories about them) are a large part of what keeps the Scottish media’s life support machine functioning, and so the media panders cynically to the extremist sections of the Celtic and “Rangers” support who still buy papers for the latest transfer gossip and soft-soap interviews with ex-players.

And so it is with a remarkably mad front-page lead in today’s Sunday Herald.

The paper reports that “over half” – 44 out of 86 – outstanding OBFA charges have been “converted” into other types of offences and are still being prosecuted by the independent Crown Office, claiming without explanation that this is “an embarrassing move for the SNP Government”.

But it rather seems like the opposite is true.

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The Stereotypes 150

Posted on July 01, 2018 by

Much of central Cowdenbeath was closed down for several hours by the police yesterday to facilitate an Orange Order parade attended by DUP leader Arlene Foster. (Curiously, Ruth Davidson, who’d been vocal in her complaints about traffic disruption in Glasgow due to the recent Yes march, had no objections this time.)

Foster made an audaciously ironic plea for a nation “free from intolerance and hatred, right before the next speaker stepped up to denounce large sections of the local population as “enemies of Christ”.

The rest of the parade took its usual form.

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Anatomy of an embarrassment 186

Posted on May 31, 2018 by

And no, we don’t even mean the FOUR spelling mistakes in this 42-word tweet.

We mean the bit that we’ve highlighted above in blue. Because what Scottish Labour’s lowest-watt bulb was gloating about earlier today was that Lord Bracadale concluded there’d been no gap created in the law by the Kelly-driven abolition of the OBFA.

And that’s… well, that’s not quite what Lord Bracadale said.

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A historic breakthrough 578

Posted on March 12, 2018 by

We could all do with some cheering up at the moment, so it’s with great pleasure that we can announce fantastic news for Scotland – the ancient plague of sectarianism has finally been defeated once and for all!

At least, we assume it MUST have been, because this week the Scottish Parliament is set to give its final assent – thanks to Labour, the Tories, the Liberal Democrats and the all-important Scottish Greens – to abolishing the Offensive Behaviour (Football) Act, against the wishes of the overwhelming majority of the Scottish population.

And as we can plainly observe from events yesterday, they would only be doing that if sectarianism was no longer a problem and it was safe to send out an encouraging message to the bigots that their worldview is now acceptable in Scotland again.

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Friendly neighbourhood rival fans 135

Posted on December 28, 2017 by

Not too many surprises here. (Except, perhaps, the 18% of respondents who claimed to be football fans yet also said they had no interest in the World Cup.)

Excluding the disinterested the numbers were:

England 24%
England’s opponents 38%
Others 40%

And for people actually born in Scotland the figures came out at

England 20%
England’s opponents 41%
Others 39%

And that’s pretty much the natural order of things. If you’re a “Rangers” fan and you cheer for Celtic when they play (let’s not say “compete”) in the Champions League, or a Celtic fan who backed “Rangers” in the Petrofac Training Cup, you’re the weirdo.

The second-class licence fee 301

Posted on July 19, 2017 by

Today the BBC finally officially revealed what everyone already knew.

So now Scottish viewers definitely know where we stand.

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The Victim 452

Posted on July 16, 2017 by

Deep in the summer news desert, the papers today are struggling for material again. The Sunday Herald has a shock-horror front-page exposé about some photos from an Orange Lodge party that turn out to be from 2010 and 2013, while the Scottish Mail On Sunday reaches all the way back to 1940 to fill a couple of pages.

But the Sunday Mail’s timing is even weirder.

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Contempt undimmed 310

Posted on June 28, 2017 by

Last week the walking monotone drone that is James Kelly MSP lodged a motion (an inescapably appropriate term for his output, it must be said) at the Scottish Parliament instigating his private members’ bill to repeal the Offensive Behaviour (Football) Act, having announced his intention to do so in February after putting together a ludicrously bogus “consultation” on the subject last year.

As ever, Kelly trotted out a mixture of baseless assertions and flat-out lies about the Act in support of his move, because apparently the most pressing issue currently facing Scotland, in the view of Scottish Labour, is that bigoted thugs must once again be free to sing about being up to their knees in Fenian blood, or lionise murderous terrorists, at sporting events without fear of prosecution.

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Once in a lifetime 205

Posted on May 28, 2017 by

Tremendous news for the rest of Scotland’s football clubs as Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers promises never to win the treble unbeaten again, even if his side score more goals than the other team in all their matches.

That’s how it works, right?

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