Friday, May 16, 2008

THE BEAUTIFUL GAME ?

I have sympathy for the guy in the Rangers top seen on TV hurling abuse at the rioters in Manchester, he shouted "you b******* are a disgrace, you are not fit to call yourself Rangers fans, you are nothing but f****** scum" his frustration was obvious he was close to tears and he was in real danger doing this.
My guess is he is a real fan, possibly a season ticket holder who loves his club and was devastated at what was happening, seeing his club dragged down by the behaviour of some morons after a period of relative good behaviour home and abroad.
Notwithstanding the periodic outbreaks of violence which still accompany old firm games it would be fair to say that the dark days of football hooliganism have passed and then, just when you thought it was safe to go out, bang, up it goes and we are back 20 Yrs.

The same old platitudes are now being brushed down, police brutality, thugs disguised as Rangers Fans, some people try to minimise the horror by referring constantly to a small minority of trouble makers, this used to wash years ago before there was a CCTV camera on every corner, now it's on screen and we can't pretend anymore.
The rioters from a crowd this size were indeed a minority but TV showed a very sizable minority some quoted thousands being involved and the scenes were sickening.

Rangers achievement in contesting this final like Celtic's in Seville should have been a cause for celebration despite losing the trophy but that has been ruined by this madness.
Football clubs owners directors and above all fans should reflect seriously on this event, quite frankly it was fortunate there were not more injuries or even deaths, a robust enquiry is necessary and hopefully there will be serious measures taken but, what can realistically be done ? apart from banning all away supporters I'm at a loss to find a solution.

Rangers will survive and they will continue to work with other agencies to remedy this.
I know they will survive because above all, when the dust settled and the real Rangers fans were back home, many made their way to Celtic Park to pay their respects to Celtic's Tommy Burns a tragic loss to Celtic and Scottish football, a dedicated and talented player from their oldest opponents and fiercest rivals.
In Manchester we saw the worst and at Celtic Park we saw the best, a credit to their club.

That is why, despite everything, it is and will continue to be,
"The Beautiful Game"

16 comments:

ShrekBall said...

But what is it about Football that attracts the thug?

People watch a rugby game all sitting together and at the end of the game shake hands and go home. At football you are segregated. If some reports are to be believed domestic violence incidents soar after big defeats.

What is it about the mental makeup of a football fan that does this?

Wendy (no not that one!) said...

We really have seen the best and worst of Scottish football this week. Even where I live in Glasgow there were a minority determined to use the game as an excuse to behave like animals and intimidate folk which created a really unpleasant, threatening atmosphere. Normally in an event like this I'd be cheering on the Scottish team regardless of their colours but by the time Wednesday came I was past caring.

But as you say the Rangers fans who went to Celtic Park to pay their respects to Tommy Burns are a credit to the club. If only there were more of them.

Like you I don't have a solution to dealing with this element, other than perhaps holding games earlier in the day to curtail pre match drinking time.

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(ShrekBall) 12:35

It’s not only football, trouble takes place at other sports. Football is ‘thee’ game though, it attracts far more and creates more tension and excitement.

People at a rugby game sit together then wake up at the end of the game, shake hands and go home, there is no comparison.

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Anonymous) 13:12

A brilliant scientific analysis of Renfrewshire Council’s ruling group, you should take up political journalism.

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Wendy (no not that one!)) 16:54

Something has to be done, Rangers are in danger of being heavily punished which will be unfair on their decent law abiding fans, but I don’t know the solution.

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Macnasty) 15:01

I believe the rag to be wrong but, if you were really concerned with such matters you might want to look at the house of Windsor.

Anonymous said...

Come off it Terry! It is painfully obvious that anon at 1:12 was merely a "sock puppet".

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Anonymous) 18:24

There are much worse things said about me and I print them. Are you suggesting that I censor them ? The language was OK just.

Is a ‘sock puppet’ better or worse than an ‘anonymous’ ?

Oakwood said...

I was in Manchester for the game on Wednesday. The atmosphere was excellent and everyone was having a great time. Many many beers were drunk and there was not a hint of bother.

I was lucky enough to have ticket so I made my way to the stadium around 7.00pm. When I left the stadium after the game I phoned a work colleague and was astounded to hear there were riots and that the atmosphere could have changed so quickly.

From speaking to relatives who were in Picadilly gardens, it appears that Greater Manchester Police grossly overreacted, although that is still no excuse for the awful behaviour. I hope those who wee involved in the rioting are brought to book.

From following football for many years I believe that reason that Rugby does not seem to have the same issues are down to the belief in some police forces that you can treat the working classes (who generally watch football over rugby) like animals. Push them here and herd them there and arrest anyone who dares to question the reasons why.

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Oakwood) 16/05/08

It would appear that every time that there disturbances at football matches involving teams from Britain it’s down to police over- reaction.

I just don’t buy this any more, maybe the enquiry will clarify matters but, if I was a decent law abiding Rangers fan I would be fearing the worst.

Oakwood said...

Cllr Kelly,

I am not trying to condone the actions of the rioters however as someone who clearly watches football on a regular basis, you must have witnessed instances of police officers acting outside the law and being far too ready draw their batons.

On Wednesday after it became clear that the TV Screen had failed. Greater Manchester Police forcibly prevented Rangers fans, many with kids, from leaving Picadilly Sq. Batons were raised and riot police were deployed as a first instance and not a last resort.

There are pictures on the BBC showing GMP targetting innocent people.

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Oakwood) 12:52

I don’t accept that the police overreacted it’s a worn out excuse, something has got to be done, the behaviour of far too many fans was inexcusable.

If you read the letters pages of some English papers particularly from the greater Manchester area you get a different account, not only of the rioting but the behaviour of fans during the day.

Traders being allowed to sell alcohol from early morning was not the fans fault but it was a major blunder, I don’t understand how that was allowed.

ShrekBall said...

Name one other sport where the fans have to be kept apart and the supporters regularly kick off?

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(ShrekBall) 18/05/08

Boxing, so what’s your point.

ShrekBall said...

Boxing?

Fair do's. A quick google of "boxing fans riot" produced a Daily Record report of a riot in 2006.

So boxing fans kicked off at every fight, arranged battles with opposing fans, got banned from the near continent for their reputation, have to be segregated in the audience and have to have substantial police guards for every fight?

Because, forgive me, but boxing does not have that reputation.

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(ShrekBall) 12:41

I answered you question, is there any chance of you getting to the point.