NUMBERS GAME AT TANNADICE
The numbers who attend the forthcoming game at Tannadice mean nothing. It is the principle that matters.
By refusing to go Rangers fans have created a major PR problem for Thomson and his behaviour. It has focused attention onto the dreadful, cowardly and unsporting behavior of United’s Chairman and their fans during Rangers period of administration and its aftermath.
For a one-off game United will market it heavily to their own fans to actually turn up in good numbers for a change - it will be their act of defiance against big bad Rangers. They will also market a section of the ground for Rangers fans in order to break the boycott.
THE PACE OF REVENGE IS SLOW
If anyone expects a single knockout blow to deliver revenge for what has been done to us in the last year then they’ll have a long wait. Such chances are few and far between: you need to wait for an opportunity to do real damage. One of the best tactics is to stick by our guns and slowly works our way back up the divisions and slowly strangle the SPL clubs.
At the moment they are putting a brave face on it - doing all sorts of mental gymnastics with crowd figures - but in terms of TV audiences, sponsorship and hospitality (never mind two home games against the Light Blues) this season and next will be a grind - it is like a ship being hit below the waterline and the band plays on despite the ship starting to sink.
In the years to come there will be a myriad of ways in which revenge can be taken - opportunities will present themselves. It’s those decisions we have to sit and wait for, but make no mistake: they will come.
DIVIDE AND RULE
Talking up the response from United fans will of course happen - it suits a lot of agendas to present Rangers fans as daft and powerless. It’s in various media outlets already. Don’t fall for it.
We already know they will trumpet the boycott as a flop and those Bears who do go will be paraded as evidence. But evidence of what? That the vast and overwhelming majority of Rangers fans have said “Dundee United are scum”?
The voices of the broad mass of ordinary Rangers fans will be marginalized and silenced by the Scottish media - but that’s hardly new.
DO NOT DECRY PEOPLE WHO DO ATTEND
Although I think Bears who go to Tannadice are misguided and short-sighted I respect their choice to go and support their team. But let’s not get sidetracked into hostility and bad feeling - there are enough bottom-feeders on the Internet who ferment ill-feeling within the Rangers Family.
The Celtic support is still poisoned by the activities of McGlone’s klan who barracked people going into Parkhead - we don’t want that sort of legacy in our ranks.
THE BIG PICTURE
Keep your eyes on the prize - this is a fantastic opportunity to lay down a marker. It’s not an invite to boycott every current or former SPL club at every opportunity - that would kill all our supporters clubs. We need to focus on this opportunity to show the world that we haven’t forgotten and won’t forgive what has been done.
A POSITIVE ALTERNATIVE
Rangers Supporters Clubs, groups of friends or pubs/clubs should make a point of gathering to watch the game on TV (12.45 ko) or listen to it on the radio - and I would suggest doing something for charity: charge to get in, hold a collection, hold a raffle. And let your local newspapers know how much you raise and the circumstances. It’s in doing lots of small things that campaigns grow and the message is sent out.
Dundee United have a dark stain on their history - by boycotting we are pointing out their shame.