Ooh,Ah-Up The VAR?


Those of us lucky enough to have access to the pay-TV sports network always enjoy a veritable feast at this time of year,as European competions and domestic leagues draw towards a conclusion,a few Cup Finals are played out,etc.

That etc also includes the play-off finals,though the ones in Scotland are generally a pale imitation of those in England. In truth,the only play-off games in Scotland that I’ve ever taken an interest in involved the huns getting beaten by Motherwell. Dunno why[?] The ones in England though are much better staged-hyped?-but there is little hype about the value of them to the players,who have a throw of the dice at promotion and probably a better wage packet. Nor to the fans,who treat their trip to Wembley like a Cup Final. Most of all,not to the owners,who see it as a golden nugget.

How galling then it must be if,like Huddersfield recently in a match deemed to be worth almost £200m to the winner,you are denied the chance to succeed by an arbitrary and aberrant refereeing decision.

As indeed might Ukraine have last night been denied the same by the same route,identical in fact as all three contentious decisions came down to a referee reviewing a penalty decision via VAR and seeing nothing wrong with the challenge nor his original decision. In all three decisions,I suggest that he was in a minority of one,bar the supporters of Forest-promoted to the riches of the EPL as a result-and Wales-gifted a place in World Cup 2022.

Because that is the problem with VAR,that the referee’s decision is final,and VAR is only there to assist in that final decision. If he got it wrong the first time,he has the opportunity to have another look at it. That’s an opportunity denied to most of us in our daily working life,I might add,and one that most of us would welcome. I’d grab it with both hands,when i think about the many mistakes that I’ve made in the past! But increasingly,referees are doubling down on their errors,even though they almost always side with a VAR interpretation of any decision made by the assistants!

So what has that got to do with Celtic,you might ask? Well,about thirty years ago as live TV coverage began its relentless march to ubiquity,we all reasoned that it would mean that the referees would no longer be able to ”get away with it.” We were wrong then,and I have said since its introduction to the game elsewhere,that we would be wrong to make that assumption about VAR in Scotland too.

In my opinion,the referees and the Head Office VAR monitors will simply apply an extension to the rules,that is where we are already refereed differently. Where a by-the-book interpretation of the laws will be used to penalise us,but “interpretation”,including that missing an offence by an opposition player,will be deemed as not ”a clear and obvious error”’and therefore not within the remit of review.

And the fact that referees everywhere are still screwing it up even WITH these handy tools means that,up here,they know they will get away with it. That precedents have been set.

VAR is unlikely to be the medicine that cures all ills for us in Scotland. It may well widen the schisms at the club,as well as in the wider game. For I believe that the officials who have turned VAR into such an unholy mess in the last two years have done so through a mixture of incompetence and arrogance,and certainly not through self-interest. So try imagining the damage that some of the officials up here could wreak by deliberately using that grey area of ”interpretation” to further their own preferred agenda/cause/team?

It will be like Turkiyes voting for Christmas.


Above article by BMCUWP

28 Comment authors
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Not, “Turkiyes voting for NATO”?


Tried twice



I couldn’t quite resist that one.


Are you back home yet Bobby? Got back to Monifieth at 9.30pm. Now in recovery…
Safe and speedy (er) return journey.



No,mate. Not even due to check in till about 730pm. Lot of time to kill,not a lot of places to do it out here.


Bummer M. Titanic visit back on?


Morning all,

Weather rather pleasant here in EK with some morning sunshine. ( Our normal forecaster Jobo, is taking a well earned holiday) ☀️☀️☀️

Hope all you Belfast Hooters are back home safely and in one piece.

Regarding VAR, I’m still undecided but think in the long run it may be slightly better than the system we’ve got in place at the moment ( ie Masonic Referees giving us hee haw and not really any questions being asked !!!)

I know this will happen under VAR in Scotland when it arrives, but I am hoping that decisions are then scrutinised more closely and eventually things will change !!!!!

Fat chance you say, and may well be right, but surely after some of the appalling decisions given against us last Season, as the song says, “Things can only get better.”

We’ll see !!!!!!!!!!!

Enjoy your day ☀️



Yep – VAR won’t change a thing, overall the desired results will happen.

The Peaky Blinders were manipulating fitba results 100 years ago … another true story

In the real world it’s still rife.

It seems that Celtic have never asserted themselves on the issue of dodgy decisions,either on or off the field.

Maybe thrown a few buns noo and again…

Almost like they know their role in the game.

Fear or favour?


Leggy – good to see you brought the weather back … looking at 21 degrees tomorrow 🌞



Glad your getting some good weather. Long May it continue but I fear not.

Still, enjoy yourself and HH 🍀🍀🍀



Celtic need a bit of encouragement from the support to prevent VAR from being perceived as an extension of a Masonic arm.
As long as the support stay silent on the issue because the means of expressing discontent does not exist the perception becomes a reality.
How to give Celtic encouragement will be set out in follow up blogs to the CST failings.

The Gombeen Man

Good read, BMCUWPS,

I hope your enjoying your extended stay in the Six Counties. I hope the weekend went well too.

VAR still comes down to opinion and interpretation. At the minimum, they’ve got it’s operation wrong. It’s much more transparent in rugby where the viewer can hear the communication between the referee and the official.

Even then there’s wrong calls.

I’m not sure the referee viewed the incident on the monitor yesterday?

Shades of Thierry Henry’s infamous handball v Ireland.

It’s not a coincidence that Scotland and Ireland are struggling to qualify for tournaments. Both have/do have ongoing problems with the administration of the game.

Dodgy financial shenanigans in both jurisdictions unfortunately.

Ireland play Ukraine on Wednesday and Scotland at the weekend (I think).

Before Saturday’s defeat they showed a graphic on Irish tv.

Last season Irish players managed (in total) just over 9,000 minutes in the EPL…Seamus Coleman and Shane Duffy contributed a high proportion of those minutes.

In the four or five seasons previously Irish players in total, have managed above 20,000 minutes, playing time in the EPL.

Years of financial mismanagement, poor governance, incompetent/biased refereeing has a cost.

Sadly that’s always going to be in results/qualifications.

Enjoy your day.

Safe trip home.

The Gombeen Man


“The Covenanters claim to have won that ‘battle’ on 18th June 1685, but it was hardly that and more a skirmish with their leader taken to Edinburgh and hung.”

2nd June 2022 @ 1.20pm.


This wee tale could pass for the plot of a period drama like Bridgerton or Downton Abbey…

The ‘Leader’ you’re referring to is Archibald Campbell, 9th Earl of Argyll.

His father, 8th Earl of Argyll, was allegedly behind the massacre at Dunaverty Castle – and quite a few others. The 8th Earl was very much a “Jesus and No Quarter!!” type of Covenanter.

Archibald snr was Alisdair MacColla’s and the MacDonnell’s main adversary.

The Restoration of the Monarchy (Charles II) and emergence of damning secret correspondence between Archibald Campbell snr and Cromwell led to the 9th Earl’s execution in 1661.

Presbyterians/Covenanters were being oppressed. Cromwells’ men had put Presbyterians to the sword in Scotland and Ulster.

Coleraine (garrison slaughtered) Lisburn (1,500), Dunbar (500+) and Dundee (100 – 1,000).

The appearence of private correspondence with Oliver didn’t go down well in Edinburgh.

(Thankfully Cromwell took large numbers of prisoners in Scotland, something that rarely happened with Irish Catholics.

Covenanters perhaps not quite as contemptible as the Irish Catholic?)

James Graham was known as The Montrose. He was also executed in Edinburgh.

John Graham was Bonnie Dundee. He was a relative of the Montrose, the exact relationship is unclear.

The 1st Duke of Monmouth was James Scott. He was an illegitimate son of Charles II. James II was his uncle.

The 9th Earl of Argyll had been exiled in the Hague, there he became involved in the planning of the Monmouth Rebellion. His role was to land in Scotland and raise supporters who were opposed to James II.

James, amongst a number of things was Catholic. His more liberal policies towards Catholics and Dissenters didn’t help either.

Monmouth’s Rebellion was quickly put down in England and Scotland. You’ve guessed it, the 9th Earl of Argyll and Monmouth were both  executed.

Charles II was a philanderer – 14 illegitimate children from 7 mistresses. Unfortunately no children survived from his marriage to Catherine of Braganza.

As a Portuguese Catholic in a very Protestant Court, she had an awful time but acted with great dignity.

Not only did Monmouth oppose his Uncle James’ policies, he was in The Hague and in contact with William of Orange and his wife Mary. They were cousins.

It sailed from Holland. It’s believed William III warned his father-in-law, James II, that Monmouth (and Campbell) were coming.

If Monmouth has been successful, Mary and William would have been much less likely to accede to the throne. William was at war with France, good terms with England and access to her military was essential.

Monmouth had been born and grew up abroad. He’d been raised by a courtier of his father, a guy called William Crofts. For a while Monmouth had taken the Crofts surname.

Later Monmouth had been in England during the reign of his father. Charles sent him to Scotland to put down the Covenanters Rebellion of 1679. This was the Battle of Bothwell Bridge with John Graham (Bonnie Dundee) as second in command.

Monmouths’ supporters (still) contend that Charles II, ‘secretly married’ Monmouths’ mother – Lucy Walter. They’d been in a relationship at a young age. Lucy claimed all of her short life that she had married Charles.

If Charles had admitted that a marriage had taken place. Monmouth would have been next in the line of succession. His contention was that someone had intervened and taken Charles’ life to ensure James II’s succession.

Charles died of a sudden stroke. As I understand it, Monmouth claimed that his father was about to admit the marriage prior to his death.

These were the days of the spurious Popish Plot. Fevered rumours – conspiracies. There was a lot of paranoia in the air. Executions, reformation, civil war,  invasions. A very anxious time.

Constant mischievous gossip and backstabbing Today’s tabloids and internet trolls couldn’t hold a candle to the revisionists of British history.

Monmouth’s mother, Lucy Walter had another child, Mary, born two years after his birth.

Mary is sometimes referred to as Mary Crofts (the same name as Monmouth’s guardian, William Crofts.) Alternatively you’ll see the name given as Mary Stuart.


If Charles wasn’t the father, it’s been suggested that Mary’s father was possibly an Anglo-Irish aristocrat called Theodore Taafe. He was the 2nd Baron of Ballymote, Co Sligo and later the Earl of Carlingford, Co Louth.


Taafe had been the commanding officer at the Battle of Knocknanuss – where Alisdair MacColla lost his life. To say Taafe’s performance at the battle was disappointing is putting it mildly. A gallon of spray paint couldn’t paint Theodores’ actions in a complimentary light.

They say Theodore was also overly fond of a pint.

I digress.

Whatever the case, Charles didn’t acknowledge Mary Stuart as his. Possibly those rumours of a marriage were a deterrent?

Mary was looked after however…

Mary Stuart-Crofts married William Sarsfield. He was the older brother of Patrick Sarsfield, the Irish General and hero of the Williamite Wars.

Patrick Sarsfield was friendly with Monmouth, they served together in the army. The Sarsfield’s were reliable and trustworthy.

(A son of James II, James FitzJames, Duke of Berwick, married Patrick Sarsfield’s widow, Honora Burke : The House of Alba :  current head, Carlos Fitz-James Stuart y Martínez de Irujo, 19th Duke of Alba)

William Sarsfield and Mary Crofts-Stuart settled in Kildare.

They had three kids – Charlotte another called Charles, the third – William.

A lot of Charles’ going on there?

There was also apparently some jiggery-pokery on Charles II part to ensure that the impressive Lucan Manor would be passed down to William Sarsfield and his family.

The property ended up with young Charlotte, who married into the affluent Bingham family, they’d  extensive holdings in Mayo.

Patrick Sarsfield’s title, Earl of Lucan would also revert to Charlotte’s family.

A snapshot of the subsequent activities of Mary Stuart-Crofts’ heirs,

1) George Bingham, the 3rd Earl of Lucan, He was instrumental in the order –  ‘Charge!!’ at the Charge of the Light Brigade in 1854.

For that moment of genius George was promoted to Field Marshall…

George Bingham, Field Marshall and 3rd Earl of Lucan was known in Mayo –

“The Exterminator.”

At the lowest point in An Gorta Mór… Bingham’s remembered for shouting,

“I would not breed paupers to pay priests,”

‘He proved his point by demolishing over 300 homes and evicting 2,000 people in Ballinrobe between 1846 and 1849. He even insisted on closing the workhouse in Castlebar at the height of the Famine.’

(From History Ireland, 2013…)

2) Does the name, The Rt Hon Richard John Bingham, the 7th Earl of Lucan, strike a chord?

Also known as Lucky Lucan? Professional gambler?

This is the chap that mysteriously went missing, presumed dead after the unlawful killing of a woman called Sandra Rivett.

That Lord Lucan?

“Lucky Lucan’s son, George Charles Bingham is currently the 8th Earl of Lucan.

The House of Lords gave the nod in 2016.

The Earl of Lucan is still doing pretty well down in Castlebar. A loophole in Land Law still gives the Earl the Ground Rents on the sale of a property.

As far as I know that’s still the case. Legislation was promised…the last time I looked the law hadn’t been changed.

Enda Kenny, previous Taoiseach had to hand over €952 to Lord Lucan in 2014.

Bad pennies.





Very true. I also think fans have to be a bit more pro active before VAR is brought in.

Will be interesting to see what will be set out, in forthcoming blogs, to give fans more encouragement .

Looking forward to that. Thanks

Hope your well ☀️


Fascinating insight as ever – thank you.

Cosy Corner Bhoy

Well, every cloud has a silver lining! Spent nice late afternoon, early evening in Hilton at Templepatrick Golf and Country Club.
Now heading into city to pass the time till 1910😩
Enjoyed every moment with old and new friends in Belfast and Mahe sends his regards to ATOB as we, Sentinel Celts, await the outcome of Ajer’s move to a ‘big club’.
The lady from Belfast Airport was a Celtic supporter, who was exceptionally helpful when spotting my top!
Thank you Caira from one Tim to another. May have got my spelling wrong.
Back to Belfast!


Every cloud…

The Gombeen Man:

An excellent comment on history, thank you, por cierto


I share the worries about VAR.
In theory it should be a godsend to everyone in Scottish football except Sevco. Celtic, who suffer from “honest mistakes” season after season, should particularly benefit from fair play and transparency making a belated appearance in the Scottish game.
Unfortunately past experience of the Scottish attitude to the rules of the game and recent examples of how flawed the application of VAR can be outside Scotland does not fill me with much hope that we will start to get a fair crack of the whip.


Celtic plc already know of the perils Video Assist Rangers will bring.
A Scottish straight line will lead to a new area in science and maths and shall henceforth be called the jimmy bell curve.
They should have demanded that in the interest of integrity and fairness the operating room would be in another country with genuinely impartial monitors.
Of course they sat on their arse and gave approval so the corrupt SFA add another tool in there already large anti-Celtic arsenal.
It suits our PLC as it will controversially fan the flames of their beloved Old Firm partnership.
With our biased mssm justifying the corruption it should leave plenty room at next AGM for feigned directors outrage and more insincere jokes.

A thing of beauty

The Jimmy Bell Curve. Classic 😂👍



Jimmy Bell Curve,outstanding!

16 Roads

Thanks to everyone for a brilliant weekend.
It’s probably going to take me about a week to recover.
One thing I’m certain of is that I’ll never be in better company.
God bless yous all.
HH. ☀️🍀🙂🎼🏆💚🤍🧡



The ref yesterday did not review,as the incident wasn’t brought to his attention. So there’s that problem right there,that if the VAR team are “selective” then their influence is massive. And our argument that a certain decision was clearly wrong-as was the one last night-is undermined by the simple fact that VAR didn’t even consider it worthy of review.

Now,FANhas a good point,often mentioned by AULDHEID and others,about outsourcing our VAR to a neutral venue. But they are ALL making mistakes,regardless! The rules for VAR need significant clarification if the system is ever going to work. And at the moment,it is all going backwards.



Pleasure was certainly ours,you and Mrs Roads were the bestest of the best company. We have all had a marvellous time. Thanks,mate.



If the Celtic support sit on their arses wailing via their keyboards about how VAR will be used against them and do nothing to stop such bias, they deserve to face the consequences of the thinking that stops effective action.

However change the thinking and it’s a new ball game we can all play in.

big packy

sorry celtic have been screwed for a hundred years over refereeing decisions, VAR will change nothing so long as the corrupt orange freemason SFA are in charge,,another true story👍

big packy

and where is JIM, you better get on here or ill be e-mailing you shortly,.another true story,


Good leader. I’m impressed that you have kept up your usual standard of writing, despite the distraction of the Belfast hoot. It seems that everyone thoroughly enjoyed themselves. Good stuff. That’s what it’s all about.

Some brilliant comments re VAR today. The only thing that I would add, is this…the introduction of VAR will make absolutely no difference, to one element of the blatant cheating that we saw last year. Namely, the regular assaults that were perpetrated on our players, with all referees, happily willing to turn a blind eye to said assaults. Of course, the PLC board should be calling for better protection for our players, but like the cowards they are, will say and do… absolutely damn all.


The Lucan’s are apparently, one of the most screwed up families within the British establishment, and have been for many generations. Considering the competition, and I include the Sax-Coburg-Gotha family circle, that is quite an achievement.

Big Packy

You missed our the corrupt Masonic cabal on the PLC board. The enemy within, are even more dispicable than the others. Hope you are well, me ould son. 😀

Hail Hail.

16 Roads

Pure class Bobby M – she had a ball as well.
Thanks again mo chara.
Just make sure the Dapper Tim gets back to base safe and sound,or yous will be in yer Ma’s bad books for sure!!
Laters chief.
HH. 🙂🍀🏆



Had posted recently regarding VAR

It will only be beneficial to all if its transparent.If VAR has all the different angles to view controversial incidents and overturn refereeing decisions then they subsequently post game explain how they came to their decision.Why not?The referee makes his decision in real time and can get it wrong.

Having had time to deliberate and analyse those incidents the VAR guys should then detail how they arrived at their decision.

Unless corrupt what is the issue?

I appreciate they like referees wont want to be held accountable but it’s their job they get paid so make them accountable.

If the clubs are paying for the product make that a stipulation.

Might upset the future after dinner speaking fraternity but its 2022 drag them into this century.

big packy

MAGUA forgot about that😎 yes ok here pal, hope you are as well, another true story👍

Prestonpans bhoys

All depends who is on the VAR panel, if its the BBC Scotland Sports desk😱😵😕



Apologies for not noting in the article that the VAR concerns had been pointed out by yourself and others. In fact,I had been planning to hold off on the article until more details became available. But,events dear boy,events.

As for “ but its 2022 drag them into this century.”,we are still trying to drag them out of the17th Century. Miracles we can do,but the impossible takes time…

big packy

MAGUA ,when you think what we had to endure ,yet we won all those cups and leagues what a testament to the charlie tullys the bertie peacocks the bobby collins jimmy quins etc etc, we won them cups by playing great football, we did not have to cheat like them bassas from govan, how many cups and titles would they have won without the referee being one of their supporters,another true story,👍

The Gombeen Man

Hi Magua,

You’ll see it here,

Unfortunately Michael Davitt’s people would have been in the centre of all of this…

Richard Bingham at the time of Elizabeth I was a horrendous individual. Even the English wanted him out. Responsible for dreadful cruelty, against Scots too.

The specifics are too disturbing for elaboration.

Castlebar on another note…

The Year of the French”(1798), when the French/Irish force under General Humbert defeated the English under General Lake at “The Races of Castlebar”. John Moore’s grave can be seen beside the 1798 memorial in the Mall, and there is a memorial to some French soldiers at French Hill. The Mall, Castlebar, was once the cricket pitch of Lord Lucan and his family, but it is now a town park. The Mayo Land League was founded by Michael Davitt in Daly’s Hotel, on 16 August 1879. There is a tablet on the wall of the Hotel, which reads:

“In this house the National Land League was founded on 16th, 1879, by Michael Davitt, without whose life and work we would not own our land to day. To his memory and the memory of all those who helped in the Land War which our people, under his leadership, fought and won, the Land Project of 1949 is dedicated, on behalf of the Irish people, by the Government of Ireland, August 16th, 1949.”

Extract from: “Mayo- Aspects of it’s Heritage”, by Bernard O Hara. Published by kind permission of the author.

“5th Baronet (1696-1749), Governor and MP for County Mayo, who espoused Anne, daughter of Agmondisham Vesey, grandniece of the celebrated general (in the army of JAMES II) Patrick Sarsfield, Earl of Lucan, who fell at the battle of Landen, in Flanders; and great-granddaughter of CHARLES II, through His Majesty’s illegitimate daughter, sister of the unfortunate Duke of Monmouth.

“Sir John was an officer of rank on the side of JAMES II at the decisive conflict of Aughrim, and contributed to the success of WILLIAM III by deserting his colours in the very brunt of the battle.”…

He wasn’t the only one…

The Manor was burned down in 1798.


big packy

MAGUA, ive got a true story for you if you fancy it, this is a good one🤩

The Gombeen Man

Friesdorfer/Por Cierto,

Friesdorfer, I hope you enjoyed the weekend in the Occupied Six Counties.

Thanks for the response.


Thanks for the response.

The PLC aren’t too concerned about VAR, the cheating keeps the turnstiles clicking.

The victim mentality keeps is good for business.

Michael Davitt provided the solution with the Land League.

Boycott and stop giving them money.

Until that happens, it’s just monetising the peasantry.

VAR will just create more of a buzz.

At least the coefficient is going in the right direction.

More easy money.

Safe home, all the best to CCB.

Back to the Bank Holiday sunshine.

Big Packy

Go for it. 😀

Prestonpans bhoys

BBC Scotland? Hell’s bells, man. Not even in jest. 😀


Watching that video, I was getting all misty-eyed. It brought to mind that old Jungle classic from the 70s:

“If I had the wings of a sparrow…”


Thank you for the reply. Some fascinating history there. As an aside, was there some protocol in the Anglo-Irish agreement of 6th December 1921, allowing the Anglo-Irish aristocracy to hold onto their ill-gotten gains? Lands and estates etc. That period of Irish history has always fascinated me, but the above question, is one that I have not posted before…chiefly because it had not previously occurred to me.

Hail Hail.


If I had the wings of a sparrow, And I had the a*se of a crow, I’d fly over Ibrox tomorrow, And sh*te on the b*stards below!


That’s the very chap. Probably not a good idea to sing it these days, I would have thought. 😀


They’d probably try and eat it, anythings possible with that mob 🤮🚽

Yass Kyogo


Good evening all from Heraghtys. A fine Glasgow night and hun free. Though I must admit to missing nailing them to the wall in a debate about their deceased, rancid club/company/engine room subsidiary. Could you imagine them believing that shite if it was us? Erm, naw, me neither. 👍



Good evening BRB. Herraghty’s? A fine establishement indeed. Enjoy yer Guinness.

Hail Hail


Hi folks.
Some sad news from Twisty.
His Uncle Jack passed away, yesterday morning.
Jack was a special man, who played a huge part in Twisty, and his loved ones, lives.
He will be greatly missed by Twisty and, indeed, the whole extended family.
Hopefully, Twisty, when he feels able to, will share a story or two about Jack.
Sending Love to you and your family, at this sad time, Twisty. 💚💚



Great read… fascinating connections.

Despite all these Earls ( Breadalbane?) losing their heads, it seems they could still thrive and organised some local retribution at Glencoe (1892) within 6 years of death of 9th Earl.

The Clachaig bar/inn at Glencoe had a wee sign “no hawkers or Campbells” the last time I checked ( 2008)

Rewarded for loyalty and the 10th Earl, another Archibald, was elevated to Dukes in jig time (21st June, 1701) by William iii

The current (sic) incumbent is married to a daughter of the Cadbury family …so everything came up roses…

That link with Monmouth and Lucan ( Bingham) – amazing.

My mum’s crew are from near Ballymote … Tubbercurry/Bunnanadin. Absolutely No connection 😉

Although often wondered about links to Pollexfens and Yeats’ … wandering (aengus) between Ben Bulben, Sligo and Gilford, Co. Down

That’s another story…


Sad news indeed. Thoughts and prayers are with Twisty and his family.



Mickey Joe’s is it ? Say hello to everyone

An original Altered Images drummer behind the bar – mebbes?