Line in the sand game?
Over the last few months comments around social media have lead me to believe there are only two camps,,those who see the game is a bogie and are not prepared to fund the farce anymore, and those who sense the games a bogie and know not what to do.
Scottish football is a house built on sand, and until it admits and confronts it’s issues it shall remain a footballing backwater.
Fundamentally flawed by it’s 5WA with regular footballing laws meaning little, mediocrity awaits the bent never boring SPL should it continue it’s current course.
Of course, it needs supporters or more specifically their funds to continue.
That’s you and me, the target demographic, and you can rest assured most clubs will have a figure in mind of roughly how many tickets they will shift next season, anything above a bonus, anything below a disappointment.
But it’s not just a pandemic that threatens those numbers, it’s also customer dissatisfaction. Bigger than ever, with more specific complaints than ever, the lifeblood of the game are more than aware the last decade or so has pushed them to their supporting limits.
At this moment, love of club and habit is just about winning out over having to throw common and legal sense out the window with old club/new club, whilst there’s little semblance of impartiality from the whistlers.
It would be fair to say, fans are at the end of their tether with the game.
Now is not the time to antagonize the support, a low profile and a season or two of exciting nip and tuck with scattered cup victories would be perfect to help fans forget the past and move on.
But oh no, the beast must gorge and they just can’t help but push a little bit more even when unnecessary.
We’ve already seen that, the mass gathering brushed under the carpet by the media already.
As stupid as it sounds but that should be it. Ok a celebration was had, everyone got it out of their system, but that should be the end of the mass gatherings.
That doesn’t need said. Number one is being hushed up, there should be no number two even thought of for health and community relations grounds, but that means little these days to a huge percentage.
Which brings us to this weekends game.
It will go ahead, there’s refund money on the line yes but there’s something much bigger than that also and that’s the semblance of being in control.
To call off the nations most prestigious sporting event due to heightened tensions would be a political disaster, alongside a sporting one. One might truly wonder what the police can actually do if they can’t keep two crowds separate, this after causing a crush not long ago.
Sky themselves won’t bid again if the nations big one and main reason they buy can be called off so willy-nilly.
The first minister would experience a drop in confidence and votes one imagines, fans of the Ibrox club wanting to really rub it in won’t take lightly their victory romp on our turf being cancelled.
Yep, it goes ahead.
Setting aside what might happen on the field for later in the week, off the field the game will automatically bring huge focus on its policing and how the fuzz approaches this clash.
We already know some Celtic fans were approached in their homes and informed to stay away from the stadium that day.
I find this truly disgraceful, have never heard of it happening anywhere else, and hope some supporters organization or other speaks up with regards to this practice.
Despite the fact there have been clear online plans to march to the stadium, I’ve yet to read any of the blue persuasion receiving similar visits, which when looked at alongside our warnings will be taken as a tacit nod to the mob.
One week of strong, clear, unequivocal calls for zero gathering alongside a zero tolerance policy would convince me otherwise, but I haven’t seen or read that.
It should be screamed from the rooftops.
Time will tell and I really do hope I’m wrong on this one, truly deeply, but for all intensive purposes they might be allowed to gather unhindered at our stadium and go ape shit, all because they can’t be controlled and they need to get it out of them.
Now please don’t think Im asking you to go down and protect our turf or anything, it’s well protected with huge barriers outside making sure the building itself will be fine.
Stay away, if anything for the health implications of another superspreader event.
But what I would ask you to do, if it comes to pass, is make that your line in the sand.
Should home fans be threatened and prevented from being near their own home stadium simply to pander to the mob, say that’s enough for now.
If you see a mob of hate escorted to outside our home, ordered to be left alone, call it a day for now.
For such scenes would yell ‘you are second class and so is your club’.
To pay up and go along would be an insult to us all, born and unborn.
For a season that is full of defining images, from JKs blank star at the defense to Shane’s ‘fuckin hell’ gritted teeth and short nod at teammate, Saturday has the potential to hand us another few snapshots of the season from hell.
You just know a certain Columbian will be feeling cocky, and their manager will probably fancy hogging the limelight himself. Get prepared for them to crack a bottle of champers and do the huddle themselves, honestly. A huge 55 firework or printed front and centre on their post match t-shirts.
I could handle all that and I expect it off them to be honest. But if we see scenes of their support partying near our stadium with Tim’s held back, that will become this season’s defining image for Celtic fans.
And a line in the sand for thousands.
Please make it yours.