How to work Swindon Town into a Celtic blog…
Cue for a song…
It was fifty years ago today,Swindon taught Arsenal how to play!
Yes,that’s right. Fifty years ago,my now-local team from the Third Division had a day out at Wembley against lofty Arsenal. Yes,the same Arsenal who two years later would win The Double,with that wonderful extra-time goal from Charlie George.
Of course,they never won anything again,bar The Texaco Cup the following year,and that hardly counts as they were awarded it after serious crowd trouble. But it still ranks as one of the biggest shocks in English football,beside the Cardiff City FA Cup victory in 1927,Sunderland in 1973 and Southampton in 1976.
Swindon Town aren’t alone in not winning a trophy in 50 years,of course. Dunfermline,for instance,won the Scottish Cup in 1968,and since then,nada. Many clubs have won nothing of note whatsoever in their history,be it short or long. And Newcastle United,famously,are in the Half Century Club.
This is despite being one of the best-supported clubs,both historically and currently,in the country. They’ve had some wonderful,legendary,players over the years,like Waddell,Gascoigne,Malcolm MacDonald and of course Peter Beardsley,the nearest I’ve seen to another Dalglish in my time. I would have included Shearer too if he’d been more of a team player,but he wasn’t,so he can GTF.
Under Kevin Keegan,they became “Everybody’s Second Team”,the football they played was simply magnificent,and when he returned under new billionaire owner,Mike Ashley,it seemed that it wasn’t just The Strawberry pub that was just around the corner,so too were the glory days.
Alas,it was not to be,and after a raft of managers in his time,most of whom could only avoid flirting with relegation by actually achieving it,Ashley turned to someone who knew what he was doing. Someone with a managerial pedigree as a winner.
He chose Rafa Benitez,previously successful at all his clubs,with two La Liga,a UEFA Cup,an FA Cup,Europa Cup,World Club Championship,Italian Cup. Hell,he’d even won The Champions League. He’s probably won more than that,but it’s all I could remember. Managed at Valencia,Real Madrid,Chelsea,Inter Milan,Napoli and Liverpool. He’s probably managed at more than that too,but again,it’s enough to be going on with. You get the point.
Surely such a successful manager,backed by that incredible support and a multi-billionaire owner would bring back the glory days to Tyneside?
Naw is the short answer. Benitez and Ashley have been at loggerheads from almost Day One over transfer strategy-who decides to buy and how much is available. It’s only now that Ashley,clearly worried about losing his manager,has loosened the pursestrings with a large signing,breaking the club and MLS records with Miguel Almiron for £21m. Ashley is promising more to come-IF Benitez signed a new contract. Three years into the job,I think he’s had enough. He will leave in the summer. And I hope Dermot Desmond has his phone number.
Onto other things nearer home,where the relegation and promotion places in Scottish League Division Two could end up being decided inside the offices of the SFA rather than on the field. Clyde were found to have played an unregistered player-he had not been re-registered after returning from a loan-and have been docked the points they won in those matches. The three points have,accordingly,been awarded to their opponents.
Now,although this still leaves Clyde nine points clear of Elgin City in the play-offs,stranger things have happened in promotion races. It is at the other end of the table where the decision could have most effect. Remember,the bottom club in this division drops out of the Scottish League altogether,and that has to be avoided at all costs. One of the recipients of this good fortune is Albion Rovers. Currently trailing Berwick Rangers by two points,the three points awarded will put them a point clear. This raises a number of questions,and I think there might be cause for a court case here. For starters,which league will the bottom club play in? Albion Rovers is the simple one-The Lowland League. (East Kilbride are currently running away with this,btw,which will please oul’ Jobo.) But is there anything in the rules of that league to allow an English club to play in it?
A can of worms,but the same thing happened to Dundee United in their relegation season,and other wee diddy teams have been thrown out of cup competitions or lost points for similar registration offences,or a name not being signed the regulatory twice,or forgetting to cross a t. Even Hearts suffered a points deduction in the League Cup sections earlier this season,though for some strange reason,only two points were deducted,which allowed them to qualify from the group.
And that’s the point. Punishment must be consistent and proportionate. The SFA are clearly inconsistent in their decisions,and they most definitely aren’t proportionate. Neither,btw,are UEFA and FIFA,all of whom show a distinct tendency to leniency for The Big Boys while thrashing the living daylights out of the punchbags with little clout behind them. And it throws yet another spanner into the works of the LNS judgement,and the perjured submissions especially of Sandy Bryson. The revelation of The Doncaster Letter on JOHNJAMESSITE the other day has done NOTHING to galvanise a demand for further investigation and/or explanation from either the clubs or the media.
This is PRECISELY why so many of us are convinced that The Five Way Agreement had a sixth member. And that was a complicit Scottish Football. EVERYONE knew,everyone was consulted. They can act surprised all they like,but they have been in on it from the start. And it’s also why you can forget about anything coming from Resolution 12.
Swindon Town will win The League Cup again before that happens.
I do enjoy a rant of a morning,it’s a pleasant wee wind-down after nightshift. Of course,I’d much rather not be writing any of the above,bar the bit about Swindon Town. What I DON’T enjoy is listening to the news overnight. I have no idea yet how many people have been killed or injured as they worshipped God in,ironically,Christchurch. The latest death toll is forty. I know all of our thoughts and,where applicable,our prayers are 12,000 miles away with all of those affected by this latest atrocity.
HI BOBBY. crackin post as usual, was gonna say a few comments, but just been reading the accounts from new Zealand has sickened me, what a crazy world we live in, will respond to your comments later if that’s alright with you.hh.
There are more important things in life. I mailed TAURANGATIM earlier about it,commiserations to the dead,injured and bereaved. Pointed out that we shouldn’t let extremists embitter us.
But it’s difficult not to be embittered at best when you read of things like this,or synagogues being attacked,Coptic churches. And of course we still have the undercurrent of it here,though thankfully not to anywhere near that extent.
Maybe we should thank God for our gun laws,as well as our daily bread?
Beats me,with the exception maybe of the Indian sub-continent,all these attacks are between people who align with a religion which worships the same God.
Excellent article Bobby. I’ll follow Paddy’s lead and not comment further until later.
Prayers offered for those affected in New Zealand.
Oh, the lights that now burn brightest behind stained glass
Will cast the darkest shadows upon the human heart
But God didn’t build himself that throne
God doesn’t live in Israel or Rome
God doesn´t belong to the yankee dollar
God doesn’t plant the bombs for Hezbollah
God doesn’t even go to church
And God won’t send us down to Allah to burn
No, God will remind us what we already know
That the human race is about to reap what it’s sown
The world is on its elbows and knees
It’s forgotten the message and worships the creeds
Arry Redknapp being taken in…
Howdy folks,,just woke up to the terrible news about Christchurch. Gutted and stunned.
Was actually texting a kiwi that lives there yesterday and all.
In 2004 myself and a few kiwis started The River Bhoys CSC in a house a stones throw from.the river Avon in Christchurch.
Worked in a bar downtown CC and on my leaving day they gave me a signed All Blacks shirt which is still here.
Have soo many great memories of that city , twice now in about a decade it has suffered tragedy , as did one of the lads.
Hard to believe. Prayers offered up.
Fool Time Whistle,,,
In daydreaming over who will take the hotseat we can surmise a few things about the new fella.
He will be signing on for at least two years . I base this on the fact the PLC wont want to be sitting in the same position this time next year , but with a lot more riding on it plus the fans would be very agitated at a one year stop gap .
Therefore signing on means you deliver ten ,, two years minimum .
Looking through the boards eyes if you hire a very promising foreigner then he has no loyalty to any ten ,, when a Prem club comes calling he will go and the timing will be collateral .
He also will expect a decent transfer kitty and quality of player delivered ,, plus neglect youth as its a short term job more than likely as why should a foreigner see himself in charge of us as his ceiling so therefore use us as a platform to advertise his wares.
So that to me says we hire a local ,, someone we know.
Has to offer more than Lenny to get the job .
Martin would possibly be above Lenny , but hes taken now and wont move after such a short spell.
Stevie Clarke might tick more boxes in some terms , but Neil being one of us and having been there seen it and done it is a safer pair of hands on paper ( just say Stevie’s family get stick and hate it and his head turns throwing our season to crap and leaving us searching again )
I cant see beyond Neil being ordered to bring home the ten full stop .
I have also blogged they better be careful as the roof could come off the entire game and country if the animals decide he wont be allowed to lift that tenth title.
Im expecting more bullets etc if he stays ,, and that side of the conversation is just , if not more , important than the footballing one.
Hope Im wrong of course but all signs point to Lenny becoming a focal point for some of the games knuckle draggers and society’s ills.
Always a pleasure Sir ! Happy Friday and Hail Hail
Morning Bobby & all.
Been at a few games at Swindon Town’s County Ground.
My eldest was a yoof player at Reading so playing them was one of the local derbies.
Hoddle was the manager at the time – another fabulous player who couldn’t manage for toffee.
Actually that’s unfair – he was a decent manager, but like many gifted players he was frustrated at “pros” not being able to do the basic stuff – never mind the extraordinary or even follow tactical instructions that were presented with visual aids including pictograms.
I also once went on an unofficial walk round Newcastle’s St James Park.
My better half was working in Newcastle city centre & I had the day off so I was her chauffeur for the day.
She went to work & I wondered up to the Newcastle Utd ground which is very close to the city centre.
While I stood outside I saw a visiting group of children with parents & teachers getting ready to do the tour.
As they climbed the stairs up to the main entrance I just tagged along & no one challenged me.
I enjoyed it and just stayed close to the group of children & adults who were getting the 5 bob tour.
My wife gave me the look to end looks when I told her how I spent my time while she was working: more particularly how I blagged my way into the ground was what annoyed her more.
In today’s world that wouldn’t happen though.
When you visit Celtic Park now everyone gets an official visitor card on a lanyard & I’m certain that’s the same at Swindon, Newcastle & all clubs. A reflection of where we are as a society and whihc takes me straight to that massacre in Christchurch, New Zealand. It used to be that certain standards were set in stone so that everyone knew where the line was/is. Old people, kids, vulnerable people of all descriptions were sort of protected by those standards so that churches and mosques could be places of sanctuary for all. Those who needed some quiet time, those who wanted to chat to a deceased relative or their god and even those who were running from something/someone and actually saw these places as a genuine place of refuge.
We know from our own personal experiences that churches are now considered to be easy targets. About 35 years ago on Christmas Eve I visited my aunt & uncle in Garrowhill & thought that I’d take in midnight mass locally. Found a church in Barlanark and slipped into the back to fulfill my obligation. It was a horrible experience as I was seated next to several people who were blind drunk & who did what drunks always do – they whispered in shouty voices, fell over, laughed & made commenst about the priest, the church and the congregation. Back then, there would have been oa couple of pass-keepers for the collection, so no one wuite knew what to do. Eventually one of the drunks told the whiole church that they felt unwell. He left and all the others trooped outr after him. The message was clear though, previously held norms of behaviour & respect no longer applied.
I’m certain that the mosques in Christchurch had no security or even a vetting procedure for those who wanted to enter.
As the security increases around obvious targets, we ensure that these deluded, ignorant psychopaths will choos the weakest target available. Schools, churches, cinemas, offices, mosques, picnics, weddings, funerals, parties, anniversaries – nothing is oll limits to these angry assassins.
Toll is 49 as I write these words & frankly, my thoughts are worthless. It is action that is needed, action on so many fronts, but if I;m honest i don;t know how you put one particular genie back in the bottle. How do we wind the clock back to the time before making an arse of yourselves at midnight mass was an acceptable thing to do?
HH & be safe.
It’s an insidious thing – the corruption of the heart & spirit.
One of my favourite bands.
I have every album they’ve done – pretty much.
Neil Finn has written such phenomenal songs – tunes & lyrics are awesome.
This song is just a small sample.
Thanks for posting.
Hard to disagree with your final choice but how NFL does on those 3 fronts I mentioned will be crucial for his chances of getting the job permanently. He’s got to seriously drop the ball not to be favourite.
Your comments about NFL getting the treatment from the nutters & extremists brings us back to what’s happened in Christchurch. When people live in their own bubble, social media echo chamber, whatever we want to cal it – cut themselves off from any dissenting or even qualifying opinion – for some of them it makes them able to justify ANY horrible action and/or words.
We started watching “After Life” on Netflix & ended up watching all 6 episodes that night. Very thoughtful, funny & poignant – but I’ve always found Gervais’s stuff to be thus. I recommend it to all but do not be put off by the concept, it all works out in the end.
Have a good day regardless.
Video of the reserves game against Partick Thistle yesterday.
Interestingly, played on astro turf in a monsoon.
Neil’s media conference today.
Nice stuff & good to know that Callum is in contention for a place on Sunday.
Last video for now.
First team squad training at Lennnoxtown.
Brown, Tierney & Lustig in shorts – rest in cosy tackie bottoms.
FOOL TIME WHISTLE, thanks for the videos, very much appreciated.hh,
Your’e very welcome sir.
Be safe & HH
you know what, I feel sorry for the Newcastle fans like us they have a fantastic support and lovely stadium ,been in Newcastle many times, but they have won nothing in x number of years but the fans keep going thru the gates, by the way they hate the huns.hh.
BBC 4 at 10. Christy Moore live at Barrowlands
Just heard White House spokeswoman Kellyanne Conway suggest that this NZ psychopath might be an ecot-errorist.
Bigotry….dontcha love it.
Ah ecoterrorist and New Zealand. I get the connection in their minds. Greenpeace.
Absolutely astonishing. This is government we are talking about.
Just heard NZ will change their gun laws.Thats the correct reaction IMHO.
Christchurch shootings: Fury as Australian senator Fraser Anning blames mosque terror attack on immigration | The Independent https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/australasia/new-zealand-terror-attack-mosque-shooting-christchurch-fraser-anning-twitter-a8824036.html
Resignation to follow ….
I often wonder what it must be like in their house at tea time.
Her husband George is rabidly anti-Ginger while she sounds like she’d sell her husband for the Gingerman.
Her husband is a Washington conservative, as is she. She is doing what she believes is her job in defending trump. But she is not stupid (odious, yes, but not stupid); she doesn’t believe a word of the crap she spouts in public.
Yup. Watched it over two nights. Good to great on a number of levels.
Anyone who has lost a loved one will identify closely with it.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=nnS9M03F-fA Joan Baez The night they drove old Dixie down
The day that the British government votes for Brexit should be the day that every self respecting Scots man and woman should be campaigning for Independence.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=nnS9M03F-fA Freedom come all ye
” And that’s the point. Punishment must be consistent and proportionate. The SFA are clearly inconsistent in their decisions,and they most definitely aren’t proportionate. Neither,btw,are UEFA and FIFA,all of whom show a distinct tendency to leniency for The Big Boys while thrashing the living daylights out of the punchbags with little clout behind them. And it throws yet another spanner into the works of the LNS judgement,and the perjured submissions especially of Sandy Bryson.”
The moral hazard and consequent toxicity of LNS in relation to points deduction is covered at https://www.sfm.scot/one-er-two-rules-to-rule-them-all/
“The revelation of The Doncaster Letter on JOHNJAMESSITE the other day has done NOTHING to galvanise a demand for further investigation and/or explanation from either the clubs or the media. ”
The implications of this are so huge I think that is why there has been no comment by media or clubs..
” This is PRECISELY why so many of us are convinced that The Five Way Agreement had a sixth member. And that was a complicit Scottish Football. EVERYONE knew,everyone was consulted. They can act surprised all they like,but they have been in on it from the start. And it’s also why you can forget about anything coming from Resolution 12. ”
All will be revealed in due course and it is something that football governance as currently structured is incapable of addressing.
However anything coming from what emerges depends on it making supporters angry enough to make their clubs act and in that sense responsibility begins at home.
Are you working nights anaw! Bummer,innit?
On your first highlighted point,I think I may have been a little unfair on the SFA. They do indeed show a remarkable and admirable consistency,in that they are keen to remind clubs of the regulations which must be adhered to,and the imposition of disciplinary measures which will otherwise follow. It’s not their fault that the rules don’t apply to one particular club or holding company,that’s just another rule they have to abide by.
On your second point,you say that the implications are too big for comment just now. I suggest it is another in a long line of “Nothing happening here,move on” sweep it under the carpet exercise.
Your third point I entirely agree with. However,see my thoughts on your second point. Our reaction to it will be limited to blogs like this and activists like yourself and a few others. The problem,quite frankly,is that over the last decade we have become desensitised to it all,it has become the new norm.
I don’t actually think it crosses the line to apathy,as such. Society in general has had to take so much crap from the holders of power that it is simply a case of doing what you do and hoping for the best,while knowing from bitter experience that we can only expect more of the same,or worse. It wasn’t always like that,it certainly wasn’t what we bought into,but there’s yer dinner.
On the New Zealand atrocities it is the result of the politics of fear and not love which is its opposite.
An apt definition of love is
“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonour others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”
It is from Corinthians 13 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Corinthians+13+&version=NIV but it needs not be taught by priests or Rabbis or Mullahs or Monks.
It needs to be broadcast then practiced so that it underpin our politics and takes us in a different journey from fear.
We need more spirituality and less religion, spirituality that comes from the inside where the human spirit dwells. The thing that makes each of us who we are, free of judgement by self or others that religion influences for better and worse.
I came across the following on Spirituality about 20 years ago,. liked it and share it on occasions, like now. I just love the last para.
On Waking Up
Spirituality means waking up. Most people, even though they don’t know it, are asleep. They’re born asleep, they live asleep, they marry in their sleep, they breed children in their sleep, they die in their sleep without ever waking up.
They never understand the loveliness and the beauty of this thing that we call human existence.
You know, all mystics – Catholic, Christian, non Christian, no matter what their theology, no matter what their religion – are unanimous on one thing: that all is well, all is well. Though everything is a mess, all is well. Strange paradox, to be sure. But, tragically, most people never get to see that all is well because they are asleep. They are having a nightmare.
Last year on Spanish Television I heard a story about this gentleman who knocks on his son’s door. “Jaime,” he says, “wake up!” Jaime answers “I don’t want to get up Papa.” The father shouts “Get up”, you have to go to school.” Jaime says, “I don’t want to go to school .” “Why not?” asks the father. “Three reasons” says Jaime. “First, because it’s so dull; second, the kids tease me; and third, I hate school.
And the father says, “Well, I am going to give you three reasons why you must go to school. First, because it is your duty; second because you are forty five years old, and third, because you are the headmaster. “Wake up! You’ve grown up. You’re too big to be asleep. Wake up! Stop playing with your toys.”
Most people tell you they want to get out of kindergarten, but don’t believe them. Don’t believe them! All they want you to do is to mend their broken toys. “Give me back my wife. Give me back my job. Give me back my money. Give me back my reputation, my success.” This is what they want; they want their toys replaced. That’s all. Even the best psychologist will tell you that, that people don’t really want to be cured. What they want is relief; a cure is painful.
Waking up is unpleasant you know. You are nice and comfortable in bed. Its irritating to be woken up. That’s the reason the wise guru will not attempt to wake people up. I hope I’m going to be wise here and make no attempt whatsoever to wake you up if you are asleep. It is really none of my business, even though I say to you at times “Wake Up!”
My business is to do my thing, to dance my dance. If you profit from it, fine; if you do not too bad! As the Arabs say,
“The nature of rain is the same, but it makes thorns grow in the marshes and flowers in the gardens.”
There is something of the night about me (but in the nicest possible taste)
On the SFA, as I said all will be revealed and it supports your one particulalr club point.
Sooner or later someone is going to trip over the huge lump in the carpet and say “wtf is that?”
Work is going on to take matters outside blogland. I agree we have become desensitised but everyone has a red line and they spell trouble (ask Theresa) one way or another.
What we think is what we get. The dinner is self served.
Good luck,mate. Anything we can do to help is yours.
” On the New Zealand atrocities it is the result of the politics of fear and not love which is its opposite.”
Hi , Auldheid.
Really admire your generous hearted approach .
However , don`t remember global outrage about this and many other massacres of Christians .
Perhaps revenge , rather than fear , played a part .
Just one example of many.
My comment at the top of the page addresses this and more. Everyone is appalled at sectarian massacres,and massacres of all sorts,because it is always the innocent who die.
Your post reeks of Anningism.
Not talking about everyone.
Talking about the global media response.
Revenge is fear.
Your thinking has betrayed underlying fear for years.
Let go, wake up and live.
We all have this awful thing called fear which is the root of so much darkness on our journey.
As the saying goes however,
“You can’t heal what you don’t acknowledge.”
First off condolences to those who lost loved ones in the tragedy in New Zealand. As for the Queensland senator, there are no words for hate mongers like him.
I’m Taking a wee step back in time today and going to Somerset park to watch my friends son play for queen of the south. My allegiance will be split as I was often taken to Ayr united games by my uncle when I wasn’t allowed to go and watch Celtic so they are really my second team but I think it’s more important the boy starts to make good progress in his career as he is on loan from a premiership club. Nevertheless I am looking forward to a different experience of the beautiful game today. Shame it’s blooming Baltic and not forecast to get any better. Still on the bright side I’ll not have the issues with parking and getting a quick get away from the ground. Enjoy your day whatever you are all doing.
Seventy times seven.
Incredibly demanding but essential to stop a vicious cycle.
Your efforts are appreciated and as Bobby says good luck. You are going to need all the luck you can get to overcome the all powerful and corporate attractive Scottish bigot buck.
Good afternoon all. Anyone seen The Exiled Time? Waiting on him providing his weekly coupon pick. Popped into various online chat rooms but no signs 😉
Quiet couple of days. I notice it’s the same over on CQN. Maybe folks were caught up with Cheltenham! My local was certainly a lot busier than usual yesterday. A poster on CQN passed on a tip he had received ‘Kemboy’. So I thought why not? I don’t usually bet so know nothing. I risked £2. Thank goodness! It fell at the first. 🙂
3rd time lucky –
Good afternoon all. Anyone seen The Exiled Time? Waiting on him providing his weekly coupon pick. Popped into various online chat rooms but no signs ?
Many minds in the world are in a very dark place just now.
Change minds and the world changes Don Quixote never said. 🙂
The purpose of fear is to promote survival. Its so instinctive we have evolved a cerebral cortex to deal with the complexities that basic instincts couldn’t overcome. Unfortunately most people chose not to use it much. Chimp like.
ATOB, The games off. Hope you heard before setting off.
Hi Jobo,,I texted him. Good to see you around these parts. Hope you’re well pal.
JimtheTim, ,I think many are on the drink,,exactly where be in a few hours.
Couple yourself pal?