Fantastic Voyage ..

.. and why sites like SFM matter.

When SFM blasted off in 2012, we had a fair idea that Scottish Football had not only veered violently off the rails,but that it had done so deliberately.

Our intention was to try to help – in some small way – to steer it towards a straighter track, and to see it restored as a sporting institution and spectacle worthy of sporting principles. To see integrity restored to our national sport, to see honesty, fairness and adherence to both the laws of the game and land.

Of course we didn’t know what route our own journey would take, even although we were clear about the destination. What we did know about the journey was that no matter the route, the first leg started outside our own front door.

Who knew we would be taken on a magical mystery tour, blindfolded, spun around a few times, but still find ourselves at that front door. Via the road less traveled, the high road, low road and an endless series of shortcuts and wrong turns we hadn’t moved an inch.

On every stage of the “journey” the SFA, the SPL, and their quasi-legal tribunals & inquiries ducked and dived, twisted and bent the truth, and aided and abetted the greatest scam in the history of UK sport.

Newly coined idioms emerged; “Imperfect registrations”, “boiler-room subsidiary”, “emerged from liquidation”, “ethereal entity”, – and the real doozy; “other clubs could also have broken the tax laws had they wished” – all in an effort to;
1. pretend that what happened had not happened, that cheating was fair, that the rights of one football club were not enshrined in law but decreed by the heavens;
2. hope against hope that the rest of us had gone stark raving bonkers and would accept the “Santa is alive” fallacy as truth.

The facts were;

  • That Rangers, having been subjected to the ignominy of administration, had now entered liquidation, leaving behind a mountain of debts, the vast majority of which were underwritten by us, by the taxpaying public.
  • That almost £100m of funds was denied to the exchequer as the first ever nationalised football club, bought and paid for by the people of the UK, slid into oblivion, a trail of devastation in its wake.
  • That in the course of that calamitous conduct of business, the SFA and the SPL were given false and incomplete information about the nature of players’ contracts. This in order to cover up a tax scheme that was (according to the man who devised it) operated incorrectly and thus unawfully.

Every football club in Scotland and their fans were cheated by a club which quite simply refused to play by the rules – even as the noose around its neck was being pulled ever tighter due to HMRC and Lloyd’s Banking Group taking steps to erect buffers ahead of the onrushing gravy train.

The result was that 140 years of history came to an end; an insatiable hunger for success ironically bringing about the ultimate and irreversible failure of a Scottish institution.

Not for them though, the recognition that they had transgressed. “It wasn’t Rangers – it was Craig White” was the cry.

I’m sure Hearts supporters in 1965 might have said the same about Willie Wallace after he missed a sitter in the final league match against Kilmarnock at Tynecastle. Had he scored, Hearts would have won the league, so Hearts should, by the RFC logic, claim that title anyway. Likewise Celtic fans could have pointed a finger at Georgios Samaras when his penalty miss at Ibrox lost them the league.

More facts: every football club in the world is the sum of its parts, onfield and off. We take the good that people do for our clubs and celebrate them. We have no right to cherry pick and ignore the consequences when people screw up.

Footballers – and administrators – are often gifted individuals given to moments of blinding inspiration which benefits their clubs. They are also often prone to reckless behaviours, the consequences of which we all have to bear. Murray’s knack of talking money out of trees and his reckless and irresponsible practices gave Rangers huge success, but that behaviour also – perhaps inevitably – led to the appointment with the buffers mentioned above.

The good and the bad. Both sides of the same coin, inseparable, inevitable, and there is no choice but to accept the whole package, not just the good bits.

In the circumstances, the hostility towards the old club was understandable. It was always a given that Celtic fans were unlikely to cut them slack as they headed towards an ignominious end.

However, had there been contrition, an acknowledgement of wrongs and some humility in response to talk of consequences, fans of other clubs outside of the Old Firm bubble may have extended some sympathy. But there was none of this. Instead, denial, arrogance, blaming others (“kicking us when we are down”, “who are these people?”) and a pugilistic reaction to the very idea of punishment. The outcome was an absence of sympathy for the plight of RFC.

Let’s revisit this; on an industrial scale, Rangers misrepresented (accidentally if you believe that the board of a PLC was comprised exclusively of halfwits and individuals unable to bite their own fingers) crucial information regarding compliance with registration rules, They subsequently withheld evidence from multiple enquiries into their conduct over these registration rules.

As far back as 1996, Rangers PAYE affairs were being investigated by HMRC and incurring penalties (not a very well publicised event).

Then, for more than a decade, principally through the 2000s they failed to comply with taxation statutes and with crucially important (not merely bureaucratic) SFA rules designed to preserve the intergity of football as a sport. They cheated the revenue out of millions and the fans of every club in Scotland out of their aspirations for their own clubs.

Rangers however were still box-office, and there were 50,000 fans providing a market for the product the now extinct club had provided through the decades. Surely someone would step in and take up the Rangers cause? Surely those people would eschew the catastrophic errors of judgement that had resulted in the economic and existential demise of the original club? Surely they would also acknowledge those mistakes in an effort to convince the clubs and fans they had wronged that this was an organisation that recognised the interdependence of sporting activity?


But no. Sadly, no.

Even then though, that matters little.

Why? Because the sins of the old Rangers cannot be visited on the new. The behavior of the new club is a matter for a different argument, but it isn’t relevant in a legal or regulatory sense to the old club. Legally or morally there is nothing you can do to them to ensure that a repeat of the same spivish behaviour does not occur.

So why the fuss? Why the six years of relentless campaigning by SFM and dozens of other football sites?

Because it does matter that the authorities themselves – including all the other clubs – and the MSM have gone out of their way to cover it all up.

No-one at the SFA will talk to fans who have provided them with evidence of wrongdoing in the matter of the 2011 Euro licence. No one will address the witholding of evidence from the LNS enquiry, nor the false premise upon which it arrived at some of its conclusions, nor the mysteriously shifting goalposts of the period investigated by the LNS enquiry, nor the acid-flashback consciousness of the newly arrived at – and totally irregular and unlawful – “imperfect registration” status.

What still requires to be done is to root out those who have enabled the big lie. We need to hold accountable those who have sought to bury evidence, to dispense with logic and to treat fans with contempt and ridicule when legitimate concerns are raised.

We need to replace those people with people of integrity, folk who love the game as much as we do, people who will not yield to intimidation or the dog-whistle.

There are foot thick rule-books in place in football, and the authorities have plummeted into the Asimovian depths of a regulatory Fantastic Voyage to circumvent those. The SFA Chief Executive even told our own John Clark that he would “do nothing” had he been presented with evidence of wrong doing (and he had been presented with such evidence).

Yet one simple rule would have saw the whole sorry escapade brought to a halt – the universal rule that requires people to show due respect and good faith to others.

As I said, we started this journey at our own front door. The authorities and their enablers in the media have been taking us on the Uber route for six years. But we still know the destination, and we will get there. The SFA, the SPFL and the MSM have been relentless in their dedication to half-truths and misdirection.

But the fans are even more relentless in their pursuit of truth and their determination to see our game returned to its status a a sport. That is why outlets like SFM are important. Not because we are any better than others, but because we give a voice to the people in the game who matter most – to the paying public of Scotland who turn up in numbers relatively greater than any other country in Europe. They need that voice. We are not going anywhere.

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Tom Byrne

About Trisidium

Trisidium is a Dunblane businessman with a keen interest in Scottish Football. He is a Celtic fan, although the demands of modern-day parenting have seen him less at games and more as a taxi service for his kids.

1,668 thoughts on “Fantastic Voyage ..

  1. I might mention that I was in Court for the TOP business ( I had to leave when that was concluded, since the other unconnected but interesting business about the 'Riotous damage ' showed no sign of being begun ( these IT techies are not all they're cracked up to beheart) before  I had to leave to get the bus into Glasgow for my periodical R&R with three longstanding friends this time in 'The Merchant.'

    My very scraggy notes of the TOP business ( on which eJ posted more fully at 10.42 today )

    read as follows:

    QC for the 'Noter'(i.e the TOP)  M'Lady, there was a motion dropped. A final note of arguments has been 'ordered'.for 3rd October. And days have been reserved for proof, 29th/30th November..We think  it should be possible to keep those dates.

    Mr Mitchell QC for the Responder: Yes, M'Lady. We're really only here to dot the 'i's and cross the 't's.

    I have only one minor point-I'll need to revise my 'Notes'- :

    their (i.e the TOP’s) argument raises hares about the standards of  proof required. A one-day debate should deal with that.

    We will have separate 'bundles' of authorities.Optimistic assumptions being made about progress of debate. Just be looked at on 3rd October.Whether to keep in the pencilled dates, there have been developments..

    ( read eJ's report at this point)

    Lady Woolffe: …Share issue?

    Mr Mitchell: yes, my Lady. The issue was how the £11 million could be paid-whether in South Africa or elsewhere. Now we are asked to act in G+ S @20p.That changes things enormously. Is the December interlocutor meaningful [anymore?]?

    Lady Woolffe: we will adhere to the timetable."

    (I confess that I cannot now remember what 'G &S' meant! But between my scribbles and eJ's report, you have the essence of the business.I'm looking forward to Oct 3rd and November, bursting to find out whether charges of criminal contempt will in fact be made ( and remitted for hearing to 'another place') and if so, when a criminal trial might be set. It would please me to see a certain party in the dock)

    [Not that I would want people to go to jail. Just that they acknowledge wrongdoing, apologise and make reparation as evidence of their sincerity, and then get to hell out of my sight!]


  2. EJ@20.17

    I think you’re right about the misdirected reply. 

    I’ve been out and about this evening and playing catch up. Underwhelmed re Hampden. The only way it can be improved is building proper ie steep stands at the east and west ends. The announcement today  has all the hallmarks of a property deaL though. New ground same old SFA.


  3. During my R&R in the 'Merchant' the question arose of what motivated King to ignore the clear warning that he had been given about increasing his shareholding to a point where a Rule 9 offer had to be made.

    I  had thought that it was simply a desire to gain overall control, founded on his single-minded(monomaniacal?) drive to get his £20 million back.[ I am not medically qualified, but I do believe the man is not altogether all there]

    He is clearly intelligent, self-willed, and persistent: all very commendable qualities.

    But  to disregard an order from the TOP, and to disregard a Court Order made after an appeal against the TOP's order, is a sign of detachment from reality as most of us experience 'reality'

    Sadly, my friends could shed no light on the matter.

    Derek was chattin' up the barmaid, Harry was chattin up the barman, and Wullie was well into his fourth double Scotch and fourth pint of Deuchars.

    [ Naw, I made that up]angry

    But we haven't an answer to the question: why is King like Don Quixote, tilting at windmills, starting battles that he must know he cannot, ultimately win?

    Perhaps more interestingly, what is/are the weakness/es of those whom he can with apparent ease persuade to support him? 



  4. Ex Ludo,  Couldn't agree more.  Rebuild the two ends at Hampden..  It would be start.   Although my preference would have been Graham Souness suggestion ( believe it or not)  use the stadia we already have with the clubs.

  5. John Clark 11th September 2018 at 22:34


    As in Glib+Shameless?

    Sounds like Mr Mitchell QC either doesn't know his client or he's having a laugh.

  6. There was an interesting development today.

    Remember The Tax Justice Network/The Offshore Game folk?

    I thought they had left the building, but apparently they wrote to SFA CEO Ian Maxwell in August referring to their SFA for Fair Play report and asking if there would be any investigation.

    Perhaps in the hope a new broom might sweep clean, but it looks like the broom is still in the cupboard.

    Not a peep  apparently, but good to know they haven't given up. 


  7. Why are we planning for a stadium based on the past when the coming generations appetite to get soaked or freeze will have all but gone because of technology?

    All that is required is a stadium that can hold say 40k for atmosphere, but with remote access via an official secure from streaming TV channel at same price  to watch as attending with no conflict with other games to consider as internationals and semis and finals have slots of their own?

    Manageable transport solutions, good for the environment, reduce costs to supporters from not travelling. 

    If the number who want to attend for “the match day experience” exceed capacity then put the attendance prices up until demand equals capacity. Those who want to watch remotely can pay a standard price per game to watch from home or on a bus even.,

    That is the NOW never mind 30 years ahead.

    To get folk who think out the box you need to employ thinkers not in the bloody box!


    p style=”margin-left:0px; margin-right:0px”>Now a  rant. If they come looking for tax payers money from the Scottish Government, then not a bloody penny until the SFA  apologise to tax payers for costing them millions because of their incompetence since 2000 AND a guarantee changes that will satisfy tax payers that football will pay its dues.

  8. Ex Ludo 11th September 2018 at 23:06  

    "…..The announcement today  has all the hallmarks of a property deal though. New ground same old SFA."

    Is it possible that the two charitable gentlemen, one a supporter of that dead club that used to be one cheek of the arse of the soi-disant  'old firm' and the other a supporter of the other, extant,  cheek of that same arse, are 'donating' a couple of million in return for the profits to be made from re-construction work on Hampden , tenders for which will not need to be open Europe wide post Brexit? and things of that kind? 

    Guys like my Lord Haughey and Sir Tom do not make their millions by giving away money!

    Where are our Woodwards and Bernsteins, who will dig away and question, and try to establish the truth?

    Nowhere to be seen or heard.

    As per usual.

    May their keyboards and smartphones permanently freeze.


  9. Auldheid  11 September 2018 23:47

    Not a peep  apparently, but good to know they haven't given up.;



    Tried to access this link but getting an error message "Sorry, this page doesn't exist."  Could you check the link please and re-post if necessary.  Thanks!


  10. JohnClark@00.15

    So in effect the twa’ birkies de facto “own” Hampden? 

    I’ll see your bon mots francais and raise you a Latin phrase.

  11. There is someone who logs onto Celtic sites as John Clark and writes absolute drivel. Please, please confirm that the nom de plume is a pure coincidence.

    Here's an example: 

    John Clarkabout 5 hours ago

    Celtic don't even own Celtic park why would they own Hampden?
    If Willie Haughey has a floating charge over the loan he gives the SFA in theory he will own Hampden and Parkhead.
    I suspect his plan down the road will be to flatten both of them and build new housing as skint-tic don't have the tens of millions needed to build a new main stand and will get a new ST mirren style Meccano set ground built for them by GCC or the SNP.
    Haughey a hard nosed business man who has the deeds to celtic park just gave the SFA millions of pounds out of the goodness of his heart or does he have a plan?

    I can't image the John Clark that posts on here can be the same person.
    Maybe time to copyright your name JC!! mail

  12. He doesn’t own Celtic Park he was the feudal Superior – an interest which ceased to exist after the Abolition of Feudal Tenure etc. (Scotland) Act 2000.

  13. theredpill@17.02

    Interesting concept but makes not an ounce of sense. For the avoidance of doubt, I don’t believe that it’s the John Clark with or without an “e”

    I presume that’s why there’s so many tu’s.

  14. “Steve Clarke: Kilmarnock boss and club face Scottish FA disciplinary charge”

    BBC headline.

    Pour encourager les autres I presume. I could swear another SPFL manager spoke out against injustice quite recently. What happened to him I wonder?

  15. Ex Ludo 12th September 2018 at 18:55  

    Mibbes 'cos hes Stevie G rather than Stevie C ?

    'They have accused Clarke of breaching Disciplinary Rule 72, which says no team official under SFA jurisdiction shall "in any manner likely to lead to publicity (i) criticise the decision(s) and/or performance(s) of any or all match official(s) in such a way as to indicate bias or incompetence on the part of such match official; or (ii) make remarks about such match official(s) which impinge on his character".'

    I hope Mr C deploys "whitabootery" as part of his defence .


  16. Very sad to see the condescending attitude of Graham Spiers on Twitter towards people who have highlighted the inadequacies of Hampden after he went on about them 'carping'. More evidence of just how much the media are part of the problem ordinary football fans face in Scotland, rather than a force for good the fans should be able to depend on. Anyone with humility would avoid the type of comments Spiers makes, because he will never be affected by what these people pay good money for. 

  17. Ballyargus 12th September 2018 at 16:45  

    '..Please, please confirm that the nom de plume is a pure coincidence..'

    I confirm that I am not the 'john clark' to whom you refer, and I am extremely glad that you and others wouldn't believe that I might be!

    I don't access or read or post on any Celtic or other club blogs ( unless there is a link made by a poster such as Auldheid, to illustrate a point he is making or informing us of).

    Maybe someone who is a 'Big Lie' denier is annoyed , and is trying to undermine me by writing even more guffy guff than I actually do?angry

    Big Fat Jim  would possibly try a wizard wheeze like that?

    But probably coincidence.




  18. John Clark 12th September 2018 at 19:47  

    Phew, that's a relief. angry

    I had written tongue in cheek as I was positive it was not your good self.

  19. From The Guardian Knowledge .

    “I have recently been enjoying watching the DVD of John Byrne’s 1980s BBC Scotland television series Tutti Frutti,” wrote Stuart Webber in 2010. “The opening scenes feature the burial of Jazzer McGloan, lead singer of The Majestics. Adjacent to the cemetery, a (presumably Scottish) football ground can clearly be seen. Does anyone know which ground this might be?”


    Despite the proximity of St Mirren Park and Petershill Park to cemeteries, the ground pictured in those opening scenes is, as a surprising number emailed in to point out, Celtic Park. “There’s a cemetery just behind Celtic Park (the reason the new north stand has pillars, as I recall, was the roof supports could not overhang the cemetery),” noted Pete Morrison. “And the nickname ‘Paradise’ originates in a journalist comparing the move from the original site to a new one being like ‘moving from the graveyard to paradise’.”


  20. Phil's latest is suggesting that RIFC/TRFC wish to return to Close Brothers with their begging bowl.

    I thought they had already pawned all the assets they could – stadium excepted?  ("Where's ra deeds!") 

    So what's left?

    Would Close Brothers secure a loan on future Season Ticket sales?  That could be useful for the Ibrox club.

    …oh, wait a minute…  enlightened

  21. upthehoops 12th September 2018 at 19:19 30 

    Very sad to see the condescending attitude of Graham Spiers on Twitter towards people who have highlighted the inadequacies of Hampden after he went on about them 'carping'. More evidence of just how much the media are part of the problem ordinary football fans face in Scotland, rather than a force for good the fans should be able to depend on. Anyone with humility would avoid the type of comments Spiers makes, because he will never be affected by what these people pay good money for.



    It may well be very sad to find a condescending attitude from a 'leading journalist', as some might call him, like Graham Speirs, but it's hardly surprising. The media have waxed lyrical about Hampden ever since their press box was demolished and replaced within the splendour of the one stand at Hampden. That's the one stand with seated terracing we have at the home of Scottish football. It's a brazen lie should anyone ever use the word 'stands' (plural) when describing our National Disgrace, sorry, Stadium.


    It's long past the time when all Scottish football writers should have used their own money to pay to watch a game from either the back, or the very front, of one of the behind the goal seated terraces (or the very front of the side terracing) to see how much of the game they can 'enjoy' before they ever comment on Hampden again. 


    I've not read Speirs' comments myself, but clearly Speirs hasn't 'enjoyed' the experience most of us common folk have at Hampden, and should, therefor, keep his condescending trap shut and spend more time learning to be a proper journalist, or even just discovering how to be a better hack.

  22. James Doleman in hospital in a poorly state. Have sent best wishes in behalf of the blog.
    Hoping for good news.

  23. Thanks for letting us know about James Doleman, BP, and for passing on the best wishes from the bog. I'm sure we all join you in wishing him a speedy recovery from whatever ailment he has. 

  24. Mordecai@8.01

    From the article in the DR it sounds like the new rules have been lost in translation or perhaps it’s just a convenient squirrel to excuse several appalling decisions made in the opening few games of the season. The incidents  chosen for the article were all egregious examples of card worthy offences, particularly the Ajer/McGregor one. Surely the SFA and the referees don’t require further guidance to apply the laws of the game?

    Then again, it’s the SFA.

  25. Big Pink 07.38

    Heard about this yesterday but didn't want to post until it was confirmed.

    As i said in my message to you/tris last night i wish him a full and speedy recovery.

    AJ 09.14
    I assume you mean the blog.

  26. slimjim 13th September 2018 at 10:10  


    Big Pink 07.38

    Heard about this yesterday but didn't want to post until it was confirmed.

    As i said in my message to you/tris last night i wish him a full and speedy recovery.

    AJ 09.14
    I assume you mean the blog.



    Well spotted SJ, just wish the subject matter lent itself to some humorous comment over my typo. Thanks for pointing it out, though, and avoiding any unsuitable humour.

  27. Saw the message on Twitter about James Doleman. Sounds very serious and hope he recovers. 


  28. I've just seen a tweet from Raman Bhardwaj @STV saying:

    Celtic keeper hits out at disciplinary process (3 man panel for potential retrospective punishment) "It's a strange system. You don't know who the [former] referees are and what their allegiances may be"

    I wonder if Craig Gordon's comment will attract an immediate disrepute charge from the Hampden Bunker?

  29. Billy Boyce @14.56

    Stand-by for an outbreak of whataboutery.

  30. Well are there any Killie supporters on the blog 

    Can I ask what your take is on the SFA after this weeks episode 

  31. Billy Boyce 13th September 2018 at 14:56  


    I'm glad Craig Gordon at least put the question out there. It is utterly ludicrous to think there can never be any bias involved in this process. However I acknowledge there will also be many who are as honest as the day is long. The biggest current issue for me is one out of three can scupper a ban two others think is deserved. That leaves it ripe for abuse. 

  32. A letter has been sent to Ian Maxwell of the SFA by the Chairman of the Celtic Supporters Association essentially echoing the sentiments expressed by Craig Gordon earlier today. 

    Has a concerted campaign been started?

  33. The most depressing thing about this whole referee discussion is our acceptance that referees “have allegiances” that affect their judgement. What a state: it shouldn’t really matter if the ref is called Mason Boyne and his da is a DUP mp (other cheeks are available) the general idea is to ref a game. It’s fitba ffs. 

  34. Here's a novel suggestion.   Scottish referees should not be allowed to be members of 'secretive' organisations like the Freemasons nor the Knights of St. Columba.  Agreed?


    The head of refereeing in Scotland has to provide in O'Level certificates in refereeing.  Is there such a certificate?


    Clare Whyte.   What a disgraceful start.  Women are no better than men.  Did you think you were going to make a difference?   Shameful.

  35. ernie 13th September 2018 at 20:44 


    English football fans must be the most depressed in the world then, given that their Refs must declare an allegiance and are then kept away from certain games! At least the English FA recognise that bias, or even the temptation to be biased is as much of a human trait as making a mistake. 

  36. The system for reviewing incidents – it is video that is used is it not?

    During the World Cup the VAR review folk weren't in the stadium were they?

    Not even in same city?

    Following my direction of travel here?

    Why does the review have to take place in Scotland?

    Why do the reviewers even need to be in the same room or same country?

    There is an excellent business opportunity for a mixed panel of referees and players to review remotely for an agreed price. 

    Instead of casting doubts on domestic bias of referee's (that no one in Scotland would admit to because of how it reflects badly on a society that tolerates it) turn the flaws into a business opportunity for ex refs and players.

    All it takes is to recognise that there is an inherent bias because of Scottish history, perhaps unconscious in some, that will always make internal policing open to question, and seek an alternative arrangement in the form of  a professional independent service.

  37. No other National Football Association in UEFA has asked for a rule clarification. Should Ajer have been sent off for trying to put the hip into McGregor's boot?

    Displacement (psychology) In Freudianpsychologydisplacement (German: Verschiebung, "shift, move") is an unconscious defence mechanism whereby the mind substitutes either a new aim or a new object for goals felt in their original form to be dangerous or unacceptable.

    Sums up the pathetic numbskulls at Hampden.


  38. The wonderful thing about all the recent incidents involving refereeing decisions is that it involves several clubs outwith Celtic.   The proof of pro 'Rangers' bias is there for all to see.  It's not just Celtic paranoia. The idiots at the SFA think we are zipped up the back. 


    The amount of ex referees who make a healthy living out of after dinner speeches openly boasting about pro 'Rangers' bias is legendary.  The whole bias and incompetence of referees in Scotland is beyond a joke.  Over to you Mizz Whyte. And muster Maxwell.

  39. This proof of pro Rangers bias. Does it involve sending off a player 10 minutes into a difficult away tie then refusing to send of an Aberdeen player for denying a clear goal.scoring opportunity? 


    Does it also involve sending off a player at Ibrox after 30 minutes for a tackle which could have resulted in a yellow due to ball direction? 


    Also, Jimbo, who are these referees that talk of rangers bias at dinner speeches. I hope your not falling for the lies of a John James here. Tut tut. 

  40. Shirley, the SFA must be aware that it is edging ever closer to a tipping point.

    Regardless of what p!sh the SMSM copies/pastes.

    The average Scottish football fan regards the SFA as a wholly corrupt and incompetent organisation.

    It seems that the SFA is not even bothering to try and hide its position, re: Hampden, Compliance Officer inconsistencies etc…

    If the SFA buffoons feel cornered, then they have 2 choices.

    Do the decent thing and resign en masse.

    Or, desperately fight back.  Divide and conquer.  Seed unrest and/or mistrust between clubs as a useful deflection.

    Desperate people don't always make the right choices.

    The SFA needs to disband… for the good of Scottish football.

  41. StevieBC, 05:13

    My confidence in Scottish Football has went so low I'am not sure if the SFA were disbanded that another organisation would be set up any better.The selection of a new SFA would be a behind the scenes secret .Though I suppose anything is better that this lot.

  42. Once again the fascination for getting all and sundry involved when the answer is staring us all in the face.

    Simply publish the ruling/decisions of the various panels so everyone can see and understand how and why decisions are reached.

    As discussed previously players, managers and fans are not always up to date with the laws of the game and how they should be interpreted and applied.

    Transparency would be a lesson to us all and precedents could then be used to explain, uphold or alter decisions.

  43. The cataclysmic  act of betrayal of Scottish Football ,by the very Governance body charged with defending the Sport's integrity, which demonstrated that that Governance body was , and continues to be, prepared to  abandon  the fundamental principle of honest sporting competition that competitors should not be allowed falsely to claim sporting honours and recognition, makes the request for clarification of a particular 'law' a farcical show of hypocrisy.

    The fundamental cheating encompassed in the 5-Way Agreement is far , far more important even than any alleged  cheating by referees, or by referee panels, because, of course, just as a fish corrupts from the head, so does any organisation. 

    If the head is rotting, so must be the body.

    And for as long as the festering sore of the 5-Way Agreement is untreated, all the huffing and puffing about 'rules' and the correct interpretation of rules, is so much eyewash.



  44. jimbo 13th September 2018 at 21:27  

    '.Scottish referees should not be allowed to be members of 'secretive' organisations like the Freemasons nor the Knights of St. Columba. 


    Good luck with that, jimbo, given that much more important persons performing functions of embracing much greater social power and importance than the refereeing of football games cannot be made even to disclose publicly whether they belong 'secret' societies!

    "In 1999, new judges were required to publicly disclose whether they were Masons.

    But after a ruling from the European Court of Human Rights, the requirement was dropped in 2009. Police officers have a voluntary requirement to disclose – but only to their superiors."


    p style=”margin-left:0px; margin-right:0px”>Very few , if any, of our Scottish judges were appointed before 

  45. Jimbo 00.38

    Indeed it is "legendary" Jimbo, as in having attended a couple of them personally plus friends who go to many more than myself i have yet to hear of  a referee who spouts this nonsense.

    Two decisions that didn't go the way you wanted them to is hardly "proof of bias".   


  46. Regarding EPL refs stating their allegiance, as I said depressing isn’t it. Does this mean they can’t even find decent refs with the integrity to ref a game fairly? Apparently so. As for us in Scotland we have an added bonus of  what is meant by “allegiance” with a quick whataboutery from the usual suspects last night then straight on to secret societies from guess what communities? I humbly suggest that is where our problems are. 


  47. Lawman2 


    To loosely use a quote from the clearly game-play aware Richard Gordon.  Whilst making no comment on ANY of the refereeing intricacies of the individual infringements that have received comment, those being Morelos at Pittodrie, Macgregor at Parkhead, the Kilmarnock lad against Hearts (sorry forgotten name) and Devlin again at Pittodrie to which I would add Gerard’s refereeing bias comments and those of Steve Clark (made since Richard wrote the piece) that if you simply put the eventual decisions post appeal into two piles, that an unconnected individual might pass comment on said piles.

  48. Rrrring..rrring!..Hello,hello is that Mr king?

    Nacho Novo here.Mr king i have this letter here that states when Hector comes calling and i could face financial ruin the club i played for at ibrox will see everything ok for me.

    Mr king here.Well you see Mr Novo, we are not the same club you played for at ibrox and we are not paying hector for you.But if you keep your mouth shut on that, i have a plan to see all the ebt beneficiaries ok for the future.

    My plan is this.A big fan zone,we will have all the legends and badge kissers like yourself to turn up on match days,get your pictures taken with the fans who will pay a small fee.You can sign autographs and mingle with the fans and tell them your stories of yesteryear.

    I'm offering you a job at ibrox and with the pay you get it will help you to be able to come to an agreement of a payment plan with hector.

    I need this Big fan zone to accommodate all the ebt players and make it a big thing,the fans will lap it up and believe i'm doing it for them.And it will help anyone who is in trouble with hector.That way you won't have to tell anyone we are not paying hector for you.

    You can't say no after all,think of the fans and how they would turn on you if you tried to hurt an ibrox club.

    Are you in?….ok.

    Now as soon as i can get this fan zone thing sorted, i will get my media puppets to have interviews with yourself and some others and you can tell them how you can't wait to get involved and take part and how it is going to be the best fan zone in the world,Hey! we may even call it Area 55, get it, yes the fan's will lap that up.

    Talk soon Mr Novo, Bye…


    Sorry for the OT. i'm late to the gamewink

  49. TheLawMan2 14th September 2018 at 03:04 3 17 Rate This This proof of pro Rangers bias. Does it involve sending off a player 10 minutes into a difficult away tie then refusing to send of an Aberdeen player for denying a clear goal.scoring opportunity? Does it also involve sending off a player at Ibrox after 30 minutes for a tackle which could have resulted in a yellow due to ball direction? Also, Jimbo, who are these referees that talk of rangers bias at dinner speeches. I hope your not falling for the lies of a John James here. Tut tut.



    Back banging an old drum of yours, I see. 


    Strange, though, when you look at the recent controversial review decisions, only one has actually overturned a referee's decision, and that one benefitted TRFC. Then when you look at the reviews that followed, it is quite clear that the Morelos decision has created an atmosphere where kicking an opponent has to be viewed from the perspective of that decision. Suddenly, as well as a 'Bryson' we've now got a 'Morelos'.


    Only a blind man wouldn't see that Morelos kicked out at an opponent when the ball was nowhere near him – an offence that has always previously carried an automatic red, if spotted by an official – and your claim that the Don's defender should have been sent off is ludicrous, as Windass was nowhere near the ball at the moment of contact, and, indeed, the TRFC player in an offside position was actually closer to the ball than him, so, if Windass was, as you say, prevented from scoring a goal, then the claims that the offside flag should have gone up would trump that one.


    It may well be mere coincidence that TRFC are benefitting from more of these weird decisions than anyone else, but there is a history of that particular coincidence that stretches back decades for the incumbent Ibrox club, then we've got the even more ludicrous free ride for Gerrard to say whatever he likes, while Steve Clark is punished for an almost identical offence.


    TRFC, since it's inception, has had free rein to say whatever belligerent message it wants to deliver, Green's 'bigoterie' outburst and McCoist's 'who are these people' set the tone for what was to follow, and it has certainly follow, followed on from then.


    I've said what I have to say, and that's an end to this debate as far as I'm concerned. You are back, with a pathetic whimper, and, as ever, with nothing worthwhile to add. It's a bit like the cement mixer that has been silent for a while, but has just started up again, churning round and round and doing everyone's head in until it just become a background noise. Hopefully the 'off switch' will be thrown sooner than in the past – unless you can come up with something worthwhile, and new, to say.

  50. Also late.

    The McGregor/Ajer incident.

    I would have loved it if someone from the smsm had asked Ajer about it and he replied.

    I will get him back in the next game blush

  51. Caught a little bit of Sportsound last night and is was out and about with an audience in Dundee.


    When asked about staying at Hampden the vote 'for' only managed to get about five hands raised.

    The salient point was that it was noted when this discussion comes up on the show, people within the game go for Hampden but time after time the fans say no.

    Tom English was however clear, that like the players and officials, he enjoys a car parking space and a decent seat, free of charge and therefore his opinion and those of other within the game is somewhat irrelevant and that he is more than aware of the complaints of fans who have to deal with getting to and from Hampden and suffering the poor views from at least  3 of the 4 terraces.

  52. Since we're on the subject.  I'll give a little credit to my big club!


    Statement from AFC this morning


    Aberdeen FC finds the explanation provided by the SFA in relation to the Michael Devlin red card appeal unacceptable.

    The club maintains its view that the player was wrongfully dismissed, that the evidence presented was a robust defence and was overwhelmingly compelling in the player’s favour.

    In light of recent decisions taken by the SFA, the club believes it is imperative for the country’s football authorities to establish consistency and transparency in the appeal and referral process and will engage in dialogue with the SPFL in this regard to seek their assistance.

    Furthermore, at a time when technology is making a significant and positive impact across sport, the club believes that the impact of the VAR system trials in the English Premier League need to be considered if stakeholders in the game are going to regain trust in the process.

    AFC is aware that the views we have expressed are held by many who have found key appeal and referral decisions this year perplexing and want to see the governing body dealing with this proactively, with a consistent and transparent appeals process high up on the agenda.

    Doing so would enhance the game’s integrity, greatly assist referees, improve the game for fans and, ultimately, the perception of Scottish football.

  53. Smugas 14th September 2018 at 11:17


    Well said, AFC. Hopefully there will be voices raised from other clubs in support.

  54. Record Sport Daily Record Sport @Record_Sport Alfredo Morelos explanation mysteriously disappears from SFA website (link: Image 26 KB 12:13 PM · Sep 14, 2018

  55. Must be feeling better laugh

    James Doleman‏ @jamesdoleman

    Thanks .@peterjukes .@TumshiePam and everyone else who has been kind enough to visit, and to all of you who have sent kind words. 😉

    10:51 AM – 14 Sep 2018

  56. Billydug@12.21

    Now if I was paranoid I might think dark forces and unseen hands were in play. Thankfully I’m not.

    Nothing to see here (literally). Let’s all move on.

  57. Auldheid has posted a link on Twitter to a new etims blog, to which he has contributed, which is a review and update on the LNS decision as it relates to the WTC and non-disclosure of documents by the club, when it was in the hands of the administrators.

    The non disclosure of documents has always troubled me. It was considered by LNS under "Issue 4" (see paragraphs 92-102 of the final decision), but its relevance was minimised as the club was only "admonished" for these failings (paragraph 110).

    The reason I'm troubled by it, is that any inquiry that does not have access to all the information it seeks is flawed from the outset. In the context of the LNS Commission, it was fatally flawed from the outset. 

    It is clear that vital documents were deliberately withheld at the request of any of the Administrators, or RFC officials, or Murray Group officials. For LNS to minimise such actions with just an "admonishment" is shameful, particularly as the information withheld had a significant bearing on the decision making capability of the Commission on the other substantive matters (Issues 1-3).  

  58. Given everything that has transpired viz. the SFA, who is blocking the changes that are crying out to be made in that organisation? If the clubs are the SFA and the SFA are the clubs then it should be fairly straightforward Shirley?

  59. Billydug & Ex Ludo

    So the referee is facing away from the incident and the Assistant referee had a "limited view".  

    How then could they reach the decision they did?, which of course was correctly overturned on appeal.

    Forced to play for over 80 minutes at the home of one of our closest rivals due to an error on the officials part.

    Got to love this bias toward us.

  60. slimjim 14th September 2018 at 15:12  


    Billydug & Ex Ludo

    So the referee is facing away from the incident and the Assistant referee had a "limited view".  

    How then could they reach the decision they did?, which of course was correctly overturned on appeal.

    Forced to play for over 80 minutes at the home of one of our closest rivals due to an error on the officials part.

    Got to love this bias toward us



    So, are you saying Morelos was in some way innocent of kicking/kicking out at an opposition player? Or are you saying that the officials had decided to send Morelos off and by some miracle he'd just kicked/attempted to kick the opposition player at the same time?


    In my opinion, and that of hundreds, perhaps thousands, of others, Morelos was deservedly sent off; you might not agree, but to suggest the officials saw nothing, but sent him off without seeing his actions in exactly the same way that I did, is quite ludicrous! Even if the review panel were correct (but god knows how), the officials must have seen him do something that convinced them that he'd kicked his opponent, an offence that only recently appears to have been reduced to the same level as kicking the ball away.

  61. The Assistant Referee had a limited view?

    Looks to have a clear view to me and made a decision based on what he saw.

    I would question his competence if he asked the ref to show a red card for an incident for which he had a limited view.

  62. With regard to Steve Clarke, I'm not surprised that he has been given a Notice of Complaint for his comments about the officials regarding Dicker's red card.

    Straight leg challenge over the ball?

    I am surprised however ……………  sorry I'm not surprised that Gerrard and Jack weren't given Notices of Complaint for similarly disparaging comments about officials.


  63. Allyjambo 14th September 2018 at 15:56  

    What was missing  a fourth official shouting"foul ,foul, foul !" or an ass. ref screaming "red card , red card ,red card !".  When are these people going to grow up and start behaving like adults rather than pubescent supporters ?

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