Crossing the Line

Rangers supremo Charles Green repeatedly tells us that Newco has transferred everything from Rangers 1872.

You know, the stadium, the training ground, some of the players. He even claims their titles, despite he and his media buddy and now hired gun, Jim Traynor, saying earlier in 2012 that should Rangers not attain a CVA, the club and its history were dead.

He talks about all of this, as flowing naturally from one corporate shell to the other, but never once has he been forthright about the transfer of something else; the transfer over of institutionalized sectarianism. Continue reading “Crossing the Line”

A Fitting Farewell

In an earlier article for this site I wrote about how Hugh Keevins had written a chapter for a book. The book was for charitable causes, and each journalist had to pick out a specific highlight of his or her career. I said in the article that the choices from the Record and Sunday Mail journalists were particularly un-inspiring, and that if they offered a fair representation of what was in the book it would make a good advert for not buying it.

Far better to donate the money, and save shelf space for something a bit better.

My article pinpointed the piece by Hugh Keevins, in particular, because I thought it offered an insight into the mind of the man. Continue reading “A Fitting Farewell”

The Only People Who Matter

To read the papers in the last few days is to read an assault on the intelligence and integrity of the only people in Scottish football who actually matter.

Us. The supporters. The fans.

Without us, the game is dead. Without us, there’s nothing. That’s a fact so self-evident, you’d think it wouldn’t need spelling out. But it clearly does.Some people appear to have forgotten it. I have no problem using this particular article to remind them of the fact, and to ask that they show a little more respect to those who keep the blood pumping through the national sport. I don’t expect we’ll get it, but I am still going to demand it, lest these people think their views are all that count. Continue reading “The Only People Who Matter”

The Institute of Integrity?

What makes an institution? The dictionary definition reads thus;

“An organization, establishment, foundation, society, or the like, devoted to the promotion of a particular cause or program, especially one of a public, educational, or charitable character.”

The institution is always as a fabric of society, no mater where it’s abode is. Continue reading “The Institute of Integrity?”

Cheeky Charlie & The Revenge of Craig Whyte

There is a truly great story about the American entrepreneur and scam artist P.T. Barnum and a truck full of fish. Barnum had, by some means or another, acquired an entire lorry load of white salmon. Whereas some men would have been concerned, and sweated over how to sell this stuff, Barnum was not dissuaded. Instead, he made signs reading “Fresh salmon. Guaranteed not to turn pink in the can.” He sold the lot. He is sometimes credited with coining the phrase “A sucker born every minute.” As Roscoe Lee Browne says in The Cowboys “If it ain’t true, it oughta be.” Barnum certainly knew how to spot one.

It is tempting to see a little of Craig Whyte in that tale. Continue reading “Cheeky Charlie & The Revenge of Craig Whyte”

He Laughs Longest …

Last night, less than a minute after Jordi Alba put the ball into the net, and denied Celtic a well-deserved Champions League point in the Nou Camp, the cameras cut to Neil Lennon, stood on the touchline.

He was perfectly still, his expression almost unreadable. He is usually a vocal manager, one who paces restlessly, who leaps and jumps in enthusiasm when things are good, and gestures frantically when things are bad.

At that moment, all that was gone. It is impossible for us to know what was going through his mind, but we can imagine the emotions pain, frustration and anger. The pride which he spoke of in interviews afterwards, pride in his team, that would have come later. Continue reading “He Laughs Longest …”

Scottish Football’s Moneyball Moment

The central theme of Michael Lewis’ 2003 book Moneyball – a book made all the more famous by the 2011 film of the same name starring Brad Pitt – is a relatively simple one.

It says that by circumventing the established wisdom in sport – that buying big is a guarantor of success, achievements can be realised – even exceeded – by looking beyond traditional theories of value and worth in order to compete successfully against richer, more fancied opponents. Continue reading “Scottish Football’s Moneyball Moment”

The Green Eyed Monster

Today I fully expected to be writing something for the run-up to the Scotland game in Cardiff, but I made a promise to myself when I started this blog that it would focus on the wider issues facing our game, that I would reflect the mood and try and touch on what was making the headlines and prompting discussion.

Tough as it is, when I want to move on from it, there is still one story which drives all others before it, and that’s the continuing saga of Rangers. Continue reading “The Green Eyed Monster”

The Trouble With Zombies

Early this morning, I got sick on the way into work. I looked out of the bus window and there was a zombie in the middle of Argyle Street, kneeling in a pool of blood, eating a human being.

I have no way of knowing whether the victim was male or female; all I saw was an arm being held up and chewed on, teeth pulling flesh from it like you or I would eat something from a box of Kentucky Fried Chicken. It was awful. I vomited. A girl in front of me screamed. The creature barely noticed. It got on with eating, and people in the street ran past.

Continue reading “The Trouble With Zombies”

A Genuine Embarrassment

Before a ball had been kicked in anger in Scottish football’s 2012-13 season, Scotland’s journalistic geniuses had already pretty much written off the game. The top and bottom divisions need not have even bothered to start. They were decided beforehand. Celtic would win the SPL. Rangers FC would win Division 3.

It was foregone. It was a done deal.

Continue reading “A Genuine Embarrassment”

More Than A Sports Story

There cannot be a single football fan in Scotland, indeed there can barely be any person in Scotland, who is not aware that this summer marked the moment where a decade of financial skullduggery came to an end at Rangers, and sent our game into what some said was a death spiral.

Luckily, they were wrong, but as the full scale of what has happened at one of the biggest clubs in the land has become clearer, the enormity of it begins to sink in. This scandal transcends sport. Continue reading “More Than A Sports Story”