Good morning folks,
Three is the magic number, and I happen to have three points to get off my chest as our team goes out to try and claim the same.
Firstly, today’s game affords us the chance to start a string of league wins together, something we simply must do if we have aspirations of the fabled tenth title. We just watched our rivals squander the chance to go double digits ahead, which really said something about them and their mentality. After winning the first two the third was a cup final essentially, and it should have been rammed into them that double digits this early, allied with a result of sorts when the two teams clash, was a hand on the title. At least it should be for a good team.
They were flat for that crucial third game, a big mistake all around.
If we can string three wins together, there’s a statement right there. Six games wait between the derby game, and its not beyond us to win all six at all, not beyond our rivals to drop points also.
Lowering the gap and then a result of sorts in the derby places the pressure back on the hunted, and a few quality signings would compound that pressure.
They dont cope well with pressure, Lenny has been dealing with it since the day he signed.
A win at Tannadice, no more no less, and the hunt is back on.
Secondly, in my humble opinion the old adage ‘football is nothing without the fans’ will be finally consigned to the dustbin on Sunday. I say this due to the fact the Champions league has almost perfected the ‘artificial crowd’ complete with sound effects, so much so that its easy to actually forget Covid has emptied the stands.
One comment I’ve yet to read on here or anywhere is this game is crap without any fans there, something that all football fans were worried about when hearing of empty stadium resumption.
But yet modern technology has allowed the broadcaster to mimic the atmosphere, and that is something Jock never seen coming, visionary that he was.
While our league games have a notable absence, Europe’s premier competition has the simulation down to a tee, Sundays final affords the chance to nail the fans’ needed claim once and for all. If you forget there’s no fans there and focus on the football, it worked, and it has certainly ‘tricked’ me over the quarters and semi’s.
I’m not sure if thats good or bad, but it is a lesson that once again, necessity is the mother of invention.
Lastly, while some of the changes that have been pushed upon the game were indeed of necessity, its striking how fast and how easy it is to get something done when its either needed or wanted.
That old saying ‘Change doesn’t happen overnight’ isn’t relevant anymore.
There’s been more change in six months than in six years, five subs, water breaks, mini tournaments, team bubbles, artificial crowds, compact season, no Christmas break etc etc.
This is all well and good, showing the sport can react to changing times, but it must be noted that there’s zero excuse for fighting change now we can see for ourselves how it can be initiated and instilled as the new normal.
If and when there is some type of restructuring up north, that’s the very time to insist on some big changes now that changes are all around us.
For starters, just like ASWGL article mentioned, we need to get rid of plastic pitches one way or another, three in the top flight is a disgrace. A long time frame for replacing, and some assistance should see the hurdles moved. It’s notable in the Dutch top flight the clubs themselves pay to replace and plastic pitches that happen to enter their league, such is the disdain for them. Scotland must adopt some type of similar model.
The ref pool should be expanded to include outside referees, which won’t be as popular as replacing bad pitches but is just as important in the long run. The gravy train for brethren needs to be halted when changes are being introduced.
Transparency regarding Financial Fair Play would be my own third choice, and all every club has to do is have an external trusted accountancy firm stamp and sign your books as kosher, which again is something that may prove vital for league viability.
Those who would fight the above wish to stay in the past.
It should be impressed upon them that in a post Covid-19 planet where mass unemployment and recessions are the new normal, offering poor fayre will see your demise plus fans that could be counted upon previously may have to pass on the season book or merchandise for the family.
The Sky deal was already signed, thank goodness, but theres no guarantee of another or similar. In that case its up to the clubs and league to have a good enough product that it will garner broadcasting interest, have an attractive price point that will entice bodies through the turnstiles, plus prove accessible at every level for the nations youth.
Freshening up the sport, modernizing it somewhat, would go a long way towards that.
The above is by Mahe. Enjoy your weekend wherever you are.