I remember back in the good (or bad) old 80's - depending on whether
you look at it from a Rangers or a nostalgia perspective - dancing in
the Ultratheque to Men at Work singing their version of the old Devil
and angel theme.
It reminds me of the way our support is polarised on the old 'Should he
stay or should he go' question. Both claim to be the 'angels' of the
piece, wanting to weed the other out.
Pro-Ecks (Mr Jives) point to McLeish's trophy haul (past) and
Champion's Laegue qualification and beating Celtic (present) and
anti-Ecks (Dr Heckles) point to our dismal record in key games (past)
and our poor start to the SPL season (present).
A lot of pub-, club-, matchday- and cyber-barnies have ensued. The
Doctor Heckles called disloyal and fixated, and the Mister Jives called
Ostriches and superfans.
Is this something new? Contrary to popular belief - we didn't all 'Keep
believing' last year. The big early arguments were pro- and anti-
David Murray, which has now taken a back seat, and pro- and anti-Barry
(which has now largely been resolved). The Eck thing was an
undercurrent which grew like a tidal wave which we ended up surfing in
It strikes me that our support is suffering from the come down of the
high that was May 22nd and the Tims 5-0 humiliation in Bratislava (How
we laughed and laughed).
Of course it's not just the support - it's the team and officials who
are positively schizophrenic as well. The same team that beats Porto
stuggles against Clyde, Murray stands up for Rangers against the press,
and McLeish plays players all over the shop.
The most important thing in my opinion is the Champion's League. The
money generated leads to a better team on the park (God knows how we
need a midfield).
The problem though is that Scotland has one Champion's League slot next
year - so we also 'need' the title to keep the momentum up.
We stand on the verge of being the first Scottish team to qualify from
the group stages of the Champion's League, but we also stand on the
verge of losing a title we should have won at a canter. No wonder we're
a split support!
It's going to be a long cold winter, but everybody - fans, players and
officials need to do their bit to see it's a glorious one. And let's
return to those heady days of summer when the most important thing was
getting it right up the Tims rather than scoring points off each other.