That Was The Week That Was
large sections of the Scottish sporting press last Friday. Speaking about
the probable demise of Scotland/Ireland joint Euro 2008 bid because the
Irish don't have the shekels to build a new stadium. He didn't so much have
a blast at the whole concept of the bid. Rather he chose to play the 'I
told you the bid wouldn't work, so there' game.' There's nothing like
tackling the real issues of the day, is there? And Leckie's article was
nothing like tackling the issues. No change there, then.
Oh, he mentioned that the Irish already have a custom made stadium in Croke
Park. He mentioned also that The GAA refuse to lend it out for what is seen
by them as a 'foreign sport'. But he didn't have the bottle or integrity to
come out and blast the GAA for their racism or sectarianism. That is
entirely in keeping with that chump.
Leckie really is a curious bag of contradictions. He tells us he hates
sectarianism but sends his son to the divisive sectarian and apartheid
schooling system which blights life, especially here in the west of
Scotland. John Greig incurred his wrath for an invisible flute. Billy
McNeill gets star billing in an IRA fanzine for telling us that the yahoos
are not a Scottish Club. Leckie zips it.
Not that Leckie is alone in the scum stakes. I think it is right that we
constantly compare and contrast the moral outrage by the Scottish Press on
the issue of Findlay's Sashaoke and Greig's air flute. And their complete
silence on all matters relating to this joint Euro 2008 bid, which at times
has bordered on the obscene.
Croke Park is not up for lease, lend or grabs (at time of writing) because
The GAA views association football as a foreign and hostile - ie British -
sport. Members of the Security forces in Northern Ireland are not allowed
into this ground. The GAA is racist and sectarian to its rotten core.
Scotland should be running a mile from linking ourselves with these kinds of
people. Yet not one Scottish footballing journalist will dare broach this
Croke Park has, for instance, been used for American football, a Muhammad
Ali v Al Lewis boxing match and next year it will host the opening ceremony
for the Special Olympics. All these sports are certainly foreign but Oat
least¹ they aren¹t seen as being British. It was the Brits after all who
gave association football tot the world. It¹s that hatred of Britain which
motivates many in the upper echelons of the GAA.
The hounding of Findlay would be pathetic if it wasn't so serious. I'll say
it again. Findlay's actions were crass in the extreme. He behaved like a
numpty was found out and he paid a heavy price for his actions. I for one
don't have a problem with this. But surely everyone else should be judged
by the same set of rules as Findlay. People like Jack McConnell for
You really need to ask what is the more sinister course of events. Findlay
singing Operty tunes' at a private function or the First Minister of
Scotland jumping into bed with an IRA collaborator? I'll say it again.
Compare the condemnation and moral indignance from the journalists who had a field day when the Findlay storm broke and their silence regards Jack
McConnell. It's a moot point, but how much blood money does McConnell's
pal, Jim McDaid have on his hands? If Ewing Grahame could redirect his
outrage at Rangers' orange top for a moment, perhaps he could ask on our
behalf. Don't hold your breath though.
Saturday at Almondvale saw an off the boil performance by all accounts but a
welcome three points nevertheless. Perhaps because we've made not a bad
start to the season, our perennial injury problems have not been noticed so
much, but they are still there. A quick perusal at who were missing on
Saturday let's us know that still our injury woes are not going away. Let's
see now, Amo, de Boer, Numan, Nerlinger and McCann, and that's just for
starters. Just when will this end?
Now to the game itself. I wasn't at Almondvale, so I obviously have to go
with press reports and the accounts of fellow bears. They all say pretty
much the same thing. We toiled against a bunch if huffers and puffers, who
have indeed been found out. I very much doubt they will offer up as much
surprise in their play as they did last season. One league win under their
belt thus far, would seem to back up this sentiment.
I'm sorry if this sounds like nit picking but it's just not good enough. We
should be walking over the top of these types of teams. It is all very well
saying it's good to pick up points even when you are not playing well. But
if the team didn't have enough confidence and swagger within the ranks after
going top of the league for the first time in a couple of years, to sweep
aside the likes of Livi, then to me it is indicative of a deeper malaise
running through the club.
Which brings us on nicely to our latest foray into European football. After
the events in Prague last Tuesday evening, I've got a suggestion to make.
At the start of each season, why don't Rangers FC just scratch from whatever
European tournament they have qualified for, from the previous season? BTW,
I am being totally serious here.
It's obvious that a profound and irrational fear takes over, a paralysis
envelops the whole Club EVERY TIME we now enter into this particular arena.
Goalkeepers forget how to tend goal. Defenders don't defend, don't mark but
invariably do make rash tackles. They are ably assisted by midfielders and
strikers who will assuredly miss the easiest of chances, which would ease
the nerves in just about every, single match. And lest we forget, managers'
collective tactics turn to mush. So why should the club put the support
through this now obligatory, yearly, ritual embarrassment and humiliation?
Enough really is enough.
I was working on Tuesday. I never saw the match or highlights. I don't
need to, because the match appears to have followed the same sickeningly
well-worn pattern it always does. Of course we do get exceptions every so
often. But this by and large is the template to a Rangers away game in
1 - Team loses bad defensive goal in first ten minutes. (It's usually
nearer 5 than 10) This results in opposition's tails flying higher than a
guest at a Michael Barrymore party. We're chasing the game already and it
has barely begun.
2 - They then proceed to put our shambolic defence through the ringer and
you find it scarcely credible to just be still the one goal down after the
half-hour mark. It has to be said though, that some disgraceful unforced
errors and the worst passing imaginable from Rangers, usually helps the
opposition's dominance no end here.
3 - Gradually around the 30-40 minute mark, the team rouses from its
collective slumber. This usually results in a good opportunity being
4 - You spend half-time ruing that missed opportunity. You mistakenly kid
yourself on that the defence has now learned its collective lesson and no
more fess-ups will happen.
5 - The team starts brightly for around the first ten minutes of the second
half without really threatening the opposition goal.
6 - The opposition looks at each other and says to themselves, 'Is that the
best they can do? Let's go for a second goal and kill this tie off.'
7 - Second goal duly comes and we spend the rest of the game trying
desperately to keep the score down to just two.
Well, this is one bear who is sick to the back teeth of this same sorry
'Play for Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow' being re-enacted year after year as
of rote. The cast may change the incompetence and unprofessionalism
certainly doesn't. As sure as eggs are eggs, Rangers FC will always let us
down in Europe.
This season though, we can't complain that the warning signs weren't already
there staring us in the face. I aim the following specifically at the
haddies who followed us to Dunfermline recently and did not sing one, single
Rangers song all afternoon.
Now if this lot could have turned their attention away from trying to cheer
up Martin O'Neill. They would have noticed that even in a game that Rangers
dominated so totally, a no mark called Craig Brewster gave our central
defensive partnership of Moore and Malcolm a pretty rough ride. Half
chances were made, clearances were snapped at, sometimes ending up in the
middle of the goalmouth. But hey, what did it matter to our choirboys.
Sellik were oot ra CL.
It's time to get real Bears. Of course it's good to see the mhanks fail. I
wouldn't have it any other way. But c'mon a bit of realism has to be faced
here. They at least qualified to get dumped out of the CL.What possible
excuse is there for Tuesday night's debacle at the hands of a team a wee bit
down the food chain from the Swiss.
Personally speaking, I reckon the 'Tallies' have the correct approach to
deadbeats in these instances. Pelt them with eggs, rotten fruit and
vegetables as they alight from the team bus or plane. They should be left
under no illusion that their incompetence shames us all. I think big Eck
can take it as read that the feelgood factor that has characterised the
start to this season has well and truly gone.
So it's goodbye to Dick Advocaat. There's too much to go through here, so
Ill keep it short and sweet for the moment. I loved the guy at the start.
The toe checks, the discipline etc, etc. And while it is always sad to see
a Rangers manager go whatever the reason. I cannot forget that it was this
man's intransigence, belligerence and arrogance in continuing to play the
hapless Konterman and Ricksen no matter what, two seasons ago, which helped
rip the dressing room asunder.
As for AuchenMurr being his legacy to the club? That remains to be seen.
What he did leave to his successor was the worst Rangers team post Souness
and the largest debt ever in Scottish football. If four players could sum
up such a debt it would be this particular quartet. Prodan, Kanchelskis,
Flo and Ball. It's not just the lack of achievement here. But rather the
millions they have picked up in wages for doing next to sod all. It is also
a kick in the teeth to the Rangers support that this little man has been
allowed to pick up fabulous wages these last ten or eleven months, when
reality was he should have been sacked.
This winner of this week's ' Help me out here Timmy, I'm Confused' award
goes, not surprisingly, to the management of irafitbaclub. For it was they
who recently sent out 50,000 begging letters to all those little Tommy
Williams out there. Pleading with them not to shout 'Up the Ra' and other
charming Sellik minded ditties at the match. Sellik fans NOT singing in
praise of the Provies? Oh pul-lease. Pull the other one.
But this is where the confusion sets in. I mean, the yahoos have told us
constantly these last two years that 'Bhoys against Bhigotry' is a
resounding success. And one of the reasons they cite for 'Sham 88' being a
winner is that you never hear an IRA song being sung these days at the
munky-hoose. Which begs the question. Why the begging letters then? There
are lies, damned lies and Sellik minded lies.
Still, after 'nae neck' and chums last September and the New York chapter of
the Septic Diaspora desecrating a wee memorial plaque from Rangers at the
Trade Centre this summer. I suppose it is a refreshing change to see the
management of irafitbaclub actually do something positive about their scummy
followers and distasteful behaviour regards Sept 11th.
Last wee point from this week. Topically enough, GS recently sent me a copy
of an Aston Villa fanzine and I read it last Saturday. It's safe to say
Villa fans don't fancy Birmingham supporters one little bit, and I'd bet
London to an orange that these feelings are reciprocated across the city.
But I digress. I tuned in to the second half last Monday night's derby and
thought Villa were the best of a bad bunch. I also thought it was only a
matter of time until they equalised. Until THAT own goal of course. Now I
have no favourites as such regards these particular two teams. But I have
one question to ask regards the behaviour of the scummy Brummy fan towards
the Villa goalkeeper after the goal.
It is simply this. What is the difference in concept between the antics of
this particular Neanderthal at St Andrews last Monday night and the fully
endorsed by the club, official Championship T-shirts, which have been a
feature of the yahoos' last THREE title triumphs? Scum is as scum does!
Have a good one bears. Or at least have as good a one as our team will
The Govanhill Gub
Purveyor of poor quality fruit and veg to our fallen stars.