Back To The Future


I really do not know where to start with a review of Saturday. Except maybe to remind everyone of the obvious fact that Saturday was far from the start. Some sites were vociferous in their demands for the introduction of VAR to Scottish Football,and quite rightly too. They saw it as a means of cleansing the stables,a Herculean task but one which had years of success in the major tournaments and leagues elsewhere.

What could possibly go wrong in a parochial wee backwater like Scotland,especially when we had all those years of experience to draw on? After all,some of our own referees already had experience of the system when they were called up-or promoted way above their potential,even-to do the business abroad?

Our site was slightly more suspicious,though. And not just in the lead articles,there were many many informed comments on the subject-and every single one of them was based on experience. You learn a lot in life-I will always be grateful to my teachers,for instance-but you learn a lot more from the experience of living it.

Sadly,our experience as Celtic supporters is a culture of Get it right up ye,Timmy. And what ye gonna dae about it? Yes,we have indeed seen this in the past,and we have to prevent it being our future too.

A number of our contributors were at the infamous R H Davidson stitch-up when we lost 2-0 to Aberdeen in the cup final in 1970. I was a smidgeon too young. I remember him sending Jinky off for the offence of being punched by an Aberdeen player-Forrest?-right in front of The Jungle a year or two later. I remember too the match at Ibrox in 1978,when we lost 3-1 and Jock had to forcefully stop the players from leaving the pitch.

(Ironic,since the fans were trying to get onto it!)

I could give you chapter and verse,and we all could. 

When I took my best mate,SOLKITTS,to his first game-and he was about 20yo at the time!-he was flabbergasted at the refereeing. He’s got used to it since,right enough. It probably made his mind up to become a referee himself,and I hope it did.

I’ve never seen though such a display of refereeing as I did on Saturday. It’s ok,guys. The masonic influence will be a thing of the past when we have the modern technology. Less than a month into it,it seems that the cabal have worked out how to use it against us and give us the finger. There’s yer dinner,whatcha gonna do about it?

Now,apart from the obvious on Saturday,can anyone please explain to me how a goalkeeper,intent on wasting time,can drop the ball from his hands to kick it about his area-only to be challenged by an opponent,pick it up again and be awarded a free kick? Or a short session of bagatelle hits a player via his ribs onto his arm OUTSIDE the area and be a penalty? Or-fall down against Celtic and get a free kick?


Now,going back to the announcement of the much-delayed introduction,I welcomed it-but not for the reason that most did. And I will stand by what I said. That this will be used against us,and by God it has. That there will be no hiding place,the ones we are inured to from the past. You know them all by heart. The referee only has a split second to make the decision,he only has one view,he has to make a call based on his own very experienced judgement. They are all crap,by the way,he can only make a call based on what he has seen,not on what he thinks might have happened.

So now we have another MIB in a studio shouting into the ear of the ref,along the lines of-I’ve got the angle you want! That’s not how it’s meant to work,but it is how the cabal intended it to work. But as I said the other day,they went too far too fast. Overreach-subtlety not being their strong point.

For me,it speaks volumes that Saturday was probably the worst example yet. And that Ange was surprisingly restrained about it all. Maybe he is dreaming of his warm homecoming in a few days time-we have a correspondent or two over there,and will post their thoughts as and when-and couldnae be arsed. After all,we got the three points,a nine point lead and a nice long break to recharge the batteries and do some real bonding together.

Or alternatively,his previous comments in public,and I suspect a few more in the weekly briefings upstairs,have made an impact. Along the lines of not coming here to be cheated,not bringing players here to be kicked off the park. I don’t know what the Aussie version of back of the bus is,but I have a feeling that Ange doesn’t know either. A wee 6yo Greek growing up in early 70s Melbourne will have memories of how tough things can be. He’s lived through worse than this,and learned from it.

Our club needs to get the VAR and referee issue sorted. They have five weeks to get it done-and we are far from the only club with serious complaints. I see in Ange’s lack of comment an understanding that MN is up to the task,and  more to be trusted than his predecessor. More to the point,I see it that Ange has been promised that MN will be doing something about it.  I hope he pulls out all the stops on this,because it is not only the fans who are somewhat miffed. It is Ange too. And I don’t think he is the type to accept mealy-mouthed excuses.


Above article by BMCUWP

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November 15, 2022 7:03 am

Good morning, live from a bus on Maryhill Road , to BMCUWP et al

A bloke on said bus is watching his phone and from it the Lisbon 67 song , the one where fans came in their thousands , is playing

I wish I could share your faith in Nicholson and his equivalents at other clubs getting things sorted out. I am cynical enough to believe that until a couple of stinking VAR decisions go against TRFC – or for us- then things will continue to play out as they are. In reality I’d imagine that the grand plan of the SFA and the refs is to tough things out and eventually people will get used to it. Pundits such as Michael Stewart who has been critical of the last two pens awarded against us will be told to cool their jets or be banished to BBC Alba.

I agree though that Ange is unlikely to be cowed by any of this. He seems to be a tough nuggetty fella with a sharp brain- these twats won’t faze him. The Celtic board might annoy him but the only thing likeky to tempt to leave would be a better paid job. He lives in the same world we do


November 15, 2022 7:21 am

Interesting stuff, albeit, as you say, unsurprising for most Celtic supporters.
I was having a look at the English VAR outcomes. ESPN had an in depth look at the season results, which I’ve copied below. Too much to copy the entire data across, but I’ve used the Liverpool data ( they benefitted most) to show the breakdown.
Will we see a similar breakdown at the end of our first season using VAR? It’ll make for interesting, if somewhat uncomfortable reading for some.


Liverpool +4
West Ham +4
Arsenal +3
Brentford +3
Manchester City +3
Southampton +3
Watford +3
Brighton & Hove Albion +2
Chelsea +1
Tottenham Hotspur +1
Aston Villa 0
Crystal Palace 0
Leeds -1
Newcastle -1
Manchester United -2
Wolves -2
Everton -3
Burnley -6
Leicester City -6
Norwich -6

Here, we run through the league table of overturned decisions for 2021-22 season, and those rejected by the referee at the review screen.
Total overturns: 120
Rejected overturns: 0
Leading to goals: 47
Leading to disallowed goals: 43
Penalties awarded: 38 (6 missed)
Pens for handball: 15
Penalties overturned: 9 (1 for offside, 3 on position)
Penalties retakes (GK/DEF encroach): 2
Penalties retakes (ATT encroach): 1 (1 missed)
Goals ruled out for offside: 32
Goals awarded after incorrect offside: 11
Goals ruled out for handball: 3
Goals allowed after wrong handball: 0
Goals ruled out for a foul: 8
Red cards: 13
Overturned red cards: 3

Liverpool +4
Overturns: 10
Leading to goals for: 4
Disallowed goals for: 2
Leading to goals against: 0
Disallowed goals against: 2
Net goal score: +4
Subjective decisions for: 4
Subjective decisions against: 2
Net subjective score: +2
Penalties for / against: 3 / 0
Red cards for / against: 1 / 1

November 15, 2022 7:23 am
November 15, 2022 7:28 am

15 penalties awarded in an entire season, across the entire EPL, for handball. 15!!

Celtic alone are on track to have more than that awarded against us 😁

November 15, 2022 7:39 am


That handball stat is surprising. Ours isn’t!

November 15, 2022 7:40 am

We can shout all we like. Ticket for Hampden ?
Don’t go.

November 15, 2022 7:51 am

1995 v Airdrie in the cup final.

My last visit to Hampden.

November 15, 2022 8:08 am


35/40,000 will be clamouring for Hamdump tickets in January. How many will Kilmarnock sell – 10,000?

As for the final, should we get there, 50/50 v The Huns or Aberdeen.

It’s naive to think otherwise.

November 15, 2022 8:18 am

And you all thought the strip was the worst thing you’d seen 🤮🤮

big packy
November 15, 2022 8:32 am

MORNING ALL and JIM, great article bobby, was at that game in 1970, with mr davidson, cheats then cheats now, nothing ever changes, aff oot dugwalking jim if your lurking will mail you this afternoon.

November 15, 2022 9:19 am

Hand of God goal on BBC this morning.

Does anyone think Scottish VAR will disallow if Huns score one like it against us.

Jobo Baldie
November 15, 2022 9:20 am

Good morning, friends.
Liked that article, Bobby, until I got to the final paragraph. Who is MN? Any relation to Eminen? Oh and the 1970 final (my first) was a 1-3 loss. Just sayin’

November 15, 2022 9:20 am

Good Morning BMCUWPS et al,

Interesting from Ange – “Best left to people in charge.”

Now why did he say this, especially in light of Matt O’Riley making it clear the Celtic team are unhappy with the anomalous decision making…

– the hierarchy still don’t want to rock the boat and have asked Ange to tone it down

– Ange has noticed you go after Scottish football officials they will double down on you and it will cost the team

– Ange is keeping quiet for the moment as the Jota offside is indeed a “Dougie Dougie” moment and Celtic not being fobbed by leaks of nonsense such as technician’s incompetences nor scurrilous “official” statements are pursuing this to the max?

Auldheid @ 9:48 pm,

As a chap who likes Plato and a good Koan

Consider this neo-greek philosophical conundrum…

… there is an ancient temple on a hill, it is square, the roof has four pediments facing north, south, east and west, it is tall but has no walls, it is held up by columns on each corner and one placed precisely in the centre.

If the the corner columns fall down, what holds it up?

Have A Grand Day

Hail Hail

November 15, 2022 9:23 am

See your earlier posts about teams wearing Green n White for your answer 😉😃

November 15, 2022 9:26 am

Yes there will be a clamour. I’ve been guilty of it myself in the past. Was at the Davidson game, down the front under the North Stand. The oft derided Peter Grant was in a leg brace a week before the Airdrie final but such was his desire to play he worked like a Trojan and did his part on the day.
We cannot rely if GB banners and booing refs, they have factored that in.
Refuse tickets, support outside the ground or back at Celtic Park, do it once to see the effect…it’s not naive.

Jobo Baldie
November 15, 2022 9:31 am

The Leopards Rimshot at 11.39pm last night – thanks for that. The only one I’d take issue was the Ralston disallowed goal at Tynecastle. Now, whilst I disagree with the referees decision that Giakoumakis was fouling the defender, theres no way VAR would overturn that. The bigger issue on that one was that the referee whistled too early. He should have delayed a couple of seconds, Ralston scores and THEN potentially reconsider whether there was enough of a foul prior to the ball reaching Ralston. VAR would have become involved.
But the other decisions you mentioned I agree with. Dossier being compiled as we speak!
Nearly time for my COVID vaccination booster thing do its Aff Oot from me…..

November 15, 2022 9:33 am


Sorry,MN is Michael Nicholson. I usually only use initials after referencing the full name first,except for say,CCV.

Oh,you mean-who is MN? As in The Quiet Man? I’m sticking my neck out by saying that he will be on top of this,and I know that the voice of experience is already calling me a twat for my optimism.

As for the final,I always thought it was 2-0. Thanks for the correction. (You’re lucky,my first final was just over a year later. We lost 4-1!)

Big Audio Dynamite
November 15, 2022 9:49 am

The price of apathy towards football affairs is to be ruled by evil men.

Plato soup

November 15, 2022 9:53 am


I finished my earlier post just as bus reached Union Street. Was going to correct you re RH Davidson final- my first Scottish Cup final.

Davidson is a curio as an official – the Huns and the Hertz hated him too . I cannot recall him reffing a Celtic versus Rangers game – always seemed to be Wharton (not unfamiliar with Aprons I’d guess but far from the worst) or Foote or JRP Gordon in charge although I cannot imagine RHD did not ref such games. Both Foote and especially Gordon were horrendous- apart from Tait nothing worse since or even as bad.


Prestonpans bhoys
November 15, 2022 10:01 am

Good morning all from a very sunny Morgan in Gran Canaria, currently 24° going 29° by lunchtime. Oh local beer €2:20 during the day an extra €1 at night

November 15, 2022 10:03 am

Morning all,

This from the Herald this morning.

Compiled by A Company called StatBomb

Scottish Premiership top 20 based off on-ball value
James Tavernier (Rangers) 0.59
Jota (Celtic) 0.55
Ryan Kent (Rangers) 0.51
Aziz Behich (Dundee United) 0.48
Liel Abada (Celtic) 0.45
Danny Armstrong (Kilmarnock) 0.43
Borna Barisic (Rangers) 0.40
Josip Juranovic (Celtic) 0.40
Ryan Strain (St Mirren) 0.38
Cristian Montano (Livingston) 0.37
Leighton Clarkson (Aberdeen) 0.37

This is based on the Season so far:

Top 3

No laughing at the back there but ???????

Just shows you nobody on this fine site has a Scooby about football 😜😜😜😜😜😜😜😜

From the name, I think someone has to bomb this Company 💣💣💣💣💣

November 15, 2022 10:04 am

Just brilliant.
To think we call Dingwall, a trek.
I hope the boys have a fabulous time
Bus for Sydney leaves Johhny Fox’s 10pm sharp
Pick ups
10.30pm Midland
4am Kalgoorlie
3am Adelaide
12pm Wagga Wagga
6pm Arrive Sydney

Seats and tickets still availble
No easy way to say this ‘no cargo till we cross the South Australian Border’👎

November 15, 2022 10:05 am

A map of the journey.
Well done lads.
Incredible 😂

November 15, 2022 10:24 am


It took us nearly 12 hours to get back from Glasgow to Swindon about 2004. I was bloody raging as I had work in the morning,but not as bad as some of the lads who missed the start of their nightshift.

We overnighted in Glasgow after a Hibs match,and left at 1pm from Bairds. Never used that company again.

But,Adelaide to Sydney by road? That’s dedication to the cause!

(Also had the same with Megabus to London a few years back,who left us all stranded at Victoria after midnight. I’d told my sister when she phoned me about 15 minutes into the trip that the turbo on the bus was screwed,and so it proved. I took a bus to Oxford,walked down to the rail station and slept outside it till the first train to Swindon. Megabus were no help at the time nor afterwards,so they went on the banned list anaw)

November 15, 2022 10:59 am

Morning all…I’m with Bobby today. For some inexplicable reason, it’s certainly not because of any great noise coming out of Parkheid, I have a feeling Nicholson isn’t prepared to accept it. Whether that’s because Ange is angry or he himself is angry, who knows but I think we’ve turned a corner with Nicholson. I recently heard a comment from him where he alluded to being in the stands in the 90s, it didn’t appear to be an attempt to curry flavour with the support more a statement that he knows what it’s like to be a fan. “I mean, Trophy Day here, I’m fortunate enough to have been here for a few, I remember bouncing around Block 405 in 1998 but this was special!”
If he was in the stands with me or anyone on here in the 90s then he knows what it’s like to follow Celtic through the lean times. That may be what’s turned me towards believing he won’t take shit…or maybe the emerald glasses have misted!!!

November 15, 2022 11:13 am

Prestonpans bhoys,

Enjoy your hols ☀️☀️☀️☀️☀️🍺🍺🍺🍺🍺🍺

November 15, 2022 11:29 am

Shows what a genius Ange is. Has us 9 points clear with nothing much to work with. Just think what he could do if he got a hold of a few decent players.

November 15, 2022 11:31 am



That sequence possibly reflects the dependence on those players for goals.

As we have scored more then it is the spread of goals amongst the team that produces that table .


If the roof does not collapse an explanation might be equilibrium which sounds more like Latin than Greek.

The Leopard’s Rimshot
November 15, 2022 11:44 am

Cheers, Jobo, you can check ALL the dodgy VAR decisions for Celtic & Sevco since its intro in this compilation from The Celtic Star


November 15, 2022 11:44 am


I’ve met Michael Nicholson a few times over the years and he is as much a Celtic supporter using an ST ticket holder as a bench mark.

He does strike me though as a passive aggressive that are slow to act but when they do it is Goodnight Vienna.

Being a lawyer he will be looking at the rules for areas that can be used to force change. The Comp Sec is a lawyer too and very much a Celtic supporter.

I dont see either sitting on their hands but I do wish there was someone on the Board in the John Reid mould..

I wonder if Bankier, tainted by events in 2012 is the brake or is it just that time stops everything happening all at once?

November 15, 2022 11:47 am


Core strength? The density of the centre column.


Those stats need a bit more explanation.
What does “ based off on- ball value mean”?

Should it read based on off- ball value?
Whatever that means also.

Jobo Baldie
November 15, 2022 11:53 am

The Leopards Rimshot – tried your link but couldn’t see any obvious team by team list. Not sogoodonmy phone so I’ll look again later on PC. Thanks.

November 15, 2022 12:02 pm

Bobby – great read buddy!

Auldheid – if you are right about Currant (sic) Chairman, probably nothing can happen until new Chair in place…unblemished…

Nicholson? it’s taking a long time for him to go ‘Tonto’ .. as you say, that could be down to his training!

November 15, 2022 12:05 pm

Twisty -thanks for sharing stats… probably need a few attempts to unpack this.. currently C19 in our place … positive readings but thankfully no major symptoms other than foggy/spongy etc.

Some great chat in here today folks


Billy Bhoy
November 15, 2022 12:16 pm

Great article Bobby.

Was anyone else on here shouting at the TV on Monday when Sky Ref watch was on? Dermot Gallaghers “verdict” on the Ross Co penalty was that MOR was “very unlucky”. FFS what a weak cop-out. If he’s too fkn cowardly to critisise referees he shouldn’t be on the show!

TLR and MM from last night: Tom Boyd said that CCV is such a great defender because he has a low centre of gravity TB clearly doesn’t lurk on here eh? 😀

The Leopard’s Rimshot
November 15, 2022 12:20 pm

It’s not a team by team list, Jobo, it’s a video compilation of all the honest mistakes since VAR.

Just scroll down the page and you can count them to your heart’s content 😁

The Leopard’s Rimshot
November 15, 2022 12:22 pm

Haha, very good, Billy Bhoy, but that saying makes no sense at all as gravity has no centre, even if they do finally ever get round to proving it exists 😁

November 15, 2022 12:29 pm

hopefully symptoms are mild, all the best to the SES household

The Leopard’s Rimshot
November 15, 2022 12:30 pm

A fine article, Mick, but Nicholson’s daily lack of comment or forward action indicates that nothing will happen as usual, same as it ever was, the waxwork dummies of the Parkhead boardroom only know how to take not give, far less give out against injustice.

The watchword of Freemasonry is Silence and Michael Nicholson seems to be the quietest of all.


The Leopard’s Rimshot
November 15, 2022 12:32 pm

Here’s the link direct on YouTube, Jobo, though I recommend the Celtic Star article anyway.

Jobo Baldie
November 15, 2022 12:46 pm

TLR – thanks I’ll watch that later. But what I would say is that whilst I wish Celtic would speak up on occasion when blatant decisions affect us directly, I also do NOT think it’s for Celtic to speak up on games we weren’t involved in, even though it indirectly affects us if our main challenger is benefitting. So let’s hear from Aberdeen, Livi, Hearts, St Johnstone and St Mirren…

November 15, 2022 12:48 pm

Right on Q.
Hopefully his board will support him.
St Mirren striker Jonah Ayunga has some strong words for the refereeing display during Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Rangers 👀🗣️💬

November 15, 2022 12:52 pm

JNP…Ayunga will be up on a disrepute charge! The SFA don’t like public criticism.
TLR et al…Nicholson needs to keep his powder dry for the moment. As I’ve said time and again as soon as he makes it about Celtic and only Celtic, or tries to fight on everyone’s behalf without their support or backing, the SFA have won. Patience is required.

November 15, 2022 12:53 pm

Was just about to say. Incoming charge for Ayunga but McCaff got there 1st 😃

November 15, 2022 1:11 pm

TLR thanks for sharing YT – glad someone put that together

JNP – thanks for sharing – Ayunga he needs more teammates to back him up –

Craig – we are all fine thanks buddy – the incoming on above might be tempered if he gets backing by his club and teammates they can’t sanction loads of players … or would SFA dare?

McCaff – aye agree on Nicholson requiring support from wider Fitba – but how long does he keep his powder dry- must be the driest powder in the entire game!

The Leopard’s Rimshot
November 15, 2022 1:15 pm

Jobo, I’m not asking Celtic to bring up games they’re not involved in at all, I’m just sharing a video with both sides’ decisions as someone asked last night how many VAR controversies have the Huns had.

And, McCaff, as I wrote last night, I agree that other clubs should speak out,, but I’m sorry to say that Celtic have been ‘keeping their powder dry’ every single day since 2012.

The fact is that’s now at least 9 or more decisions gone against us in the 4 weeks since VAR’s introduction and the time to speak out on these shocking decisions is now, on behalf of Celtic, its players and its support as it’s plainly obvious that no other club will get involved as they all know on what side their bread’s buttered.

Celtic have been keeping their powder dry so long it appears they’ve now no powder left.

The Leopard’s Rimshot
November 15, 2022 1:20 pm

Besides, all this talk of Celtic action, inaction and keeping their powder dry is moot as nothing will be said or done as usual.

It’s all in that magic watchword …

bada Bing 1
November 15, 2022 1:25 pm

Noticeable that teams wronged by VAR at the weekend,have said hee haw,i suspect this could be a move to isolate Celtic,cue the ‘tiresome ‘,type statements from the SFA/SPFL and the referees……

The Leopard’s Rimshot
November 15, 2022 1:28 pm

It’s not that at all, Bada.

I’ve explained at great length why they ALL stay silent, Celtic included.