The Offline Game

ByBig Pink

The Offline Game

The scandal in which Scottish football has become embroiled is neither equivocal nor complicated. It happened. It is easily seen to have happened. It is certainly not a degree course in nuclear physics. Why then, are simple facts ignored day after day, week after week, by not just the so called purveyors of truth in the media, but the body of the SFA itself, the clubs?

Five years or so ago, systematic cheating by a club involved in Scottish football was uncovered as a consequence of the club slipping into liquidation. This is easily established as fact.

It soon became clear that the authorities had been aware of the situation for as long as it had been going on, but instead of applying their own rules, which would have saved that club from it’s ultimate demise, they chose to enable it and cover it up. Also, backed up by documentary evidence.

As a consequence of the slide towards liquidation, the authorities went into cover-up overdrive to protect their own position. Inquiries based on rhetorical “you’ll have had your tea!” questions were set up to arrive at predetermined conclusions. The post-truth era in Scottish football had begun in earnest.

The claims of corruption which subsequently emerged were dismissed out of hand by the authorities and the press; first by accusations that it was only Paranoid Celtic fans looking to put the boot into Rangers who were behind the claims, then, when it became clear that it was not only Celtic fans who were angered by the way the integrity of the sport had been shattered, the “mad Celtic fans” epithet was amended to “mad online conspiracy theorists”.

The tactic was clear. NEVER address the issue. Attack the messengers. Ridicule them, mock them, demonise them. Despite that, the message of SFM and others was gaining traction and dangerously for the authorities, becoming difficult to ignore.

Last Autumn SFM was approached in confidence by senior figures in two print media outlets. The request was for us to provide them with the facts we had in bullet points – to make it easier for them to reach their audience, an audience they claimed was not sophisticated enough to absorb the detail and minutiae of the story.

The role of journalists is to do exactly that of course. They had access to the same documentary evidence we had (we know this because we gave it to them), but they wanted us to do their job for them? Leaving aside the scant regard I have for football journalists in this country, I don’t believe they are incapable of carrying out that simple task – but we humoured them anyway and provided them with the “SFA Corruption for Dummies” guide that they asked for.

But what were they really up to?

Remembering the RTC thread where he pointed out that genuine whistle-blowers in this saga were reluctant to come forward because of trust issues – they feared any contact with the MSM would result in their details being provided to those they were exposing – we proceeded with some caution. Amusingly, the same three questions was asked at each meeting; “You must know who Rangers Tax Case is?”, “any idea who John James is?” and, “what team do you support?”. (FYI, my answers were, “No”, “No”, and “Celtic” respectively).

Interestingly, for people who needed clarification by bullet-point, they were well enough versed in the minutiae to attempt to argue the flat-earth case and try to sell us the “it has been established legally that <insert something that hasn’t been established legally here>”

Our only conjecture was that they were trying to convince us we were wrong,  or ascertain how firm a grasp we actually had on the facts to better see who and what they were dealing with, or (most probably) they were reacting aimlessly to online pressure and not really following any plan at all. Perhaps they were seeking to reassure themselves that it was just Celtic fans who were angry – although I fail to see how Celtic or their fans have less credibility when asking legitimate questions about the running of the game just because Rangers were involved.

Subsequently, despite the platitudes of “print and social media should work together” and the like, and despite being furnished with the aforementioned bullet points, no further contact was made with SFM other than a couple of childish comments about SFM on Twitter.

Facts might be facts to us all, but in the case of the print media, they can be ignored on the basis that mad internet bampots are not a credible source, although metaphysical hypotheses are clearly thought to be a far more sensible line of inquiry!

However, facts ARE indeed facts, and in the hands of real journalists like Alec Thomson and those in The Offshore Game (TOG), they are given the credence they merit. Since TOG published the report on the SFA (see below), the facts have emerged from not just the so-called internet bampots. Those facts have survived the scrutiny of several reputable journalists involved in TOG – and their legal advisers.

Accusations more blunt and unequivocal than we have ever made have been published. The genie is most definitely out of the bottle, but the prodigious MSM Twitterati, so meticulous in their investigations into the occupation of Craig Whyte’s female companions, appear to have run out of batteries on their keyboards. “No answer” is the loud reply, since TOG cannot be ridiculed quite so easily without exposing themselves to the same scrutiny they have failed to apply to the SFA.

If I can be as unequivocal about this as possible. Senior journalists in at least two MSM print outlets KNOW there has been a cover up, and that systematic cheating took place. They knew that before the TOG report, long before it, but still they did nothing. Even now they do nothing. They are now playing a reactionary role – as counterpoint to the accessible online truth –  involved in actively concealing that truth from the offline public. An Offline Game if you like.

Of course we are not surprised by that, and as the falling-off-a-cliff circulation figures show, fewer and fewer people are playing their game. Even those who still purchase newspapers believe little of what they read.

The clubs are a different matter. Fans of every single club in this country – and that includes TRFC – will benefit from an inquiry into the handling of this matter. In the light of the TOG report, there is no excuse for the clubs to ignore calls for an inquiry to be set up. In fact by doing so, they are actively embracing corruption.

As we have said time and time again, this is no longer about Rangers. It is about institutionalised mal-governance at Hampden. By assisting the cover-up, the clubs are ensuring that the same corrupt practices are in place, ready to go again when necessary. Those practices which saw journalists and SFA officials cede editorial control (both statements backed up by documentary evidence) of their output to one club, and allow damaging conflicts of interest to circumvent rules.

The Offshore Game has thrown a media spotlight onto a cover-up. The MSM have attempted to bury it in the offline domain, but corruption, however well established,is not unbeatable. We can beat it if we work together – and here is how.

Season ticket renewals are dropping through letterboxes as I write this. If we do nothing other than protest, the clubs will do – just like Stewart Regan says he will – NOTHING!

There is only one way to establish the Independent Inquiry that is demanded in the wake of TOG report. Ask your club if they will vote for an Independent Inquiry to be set up.

If they agree, there is no problem. They are doing the right thing and will be deserving of our support.

Otherwise, send their renewal forms back to them unsigned.

It really is that simple.



About the author

Big Pink administrator

Big Pink is John Cole; a former schoolteacher based in the West of Scotland, He is also a print and broadcast journalist who is engaged in the running of SFM . Former gigs include Newstalk 106, the Celtic View, and Channel67. A Celtic fan, he is also the voice of our podcast initiative.

1,833 Comments so far

easyJamboPosted on6:35 pm - May 21, 2016

Smugas May 21, 2016 at 18:21
And more seriously, whilst I am the first to criticise those who took the inevitable pitch invasion too far, particularly those that took it out on TRFC officials and players these are the sort of passions that the SFA have been riding roughshod over for four years now.  Pandering to the side they thought most likely to cause the problems should never ever have been done, at the expense of the vast majority.  
No excuses Hibs, but a degree of wider understanding for sure.
You make a very valid point. You could reasonably ask if today’s post match events would have taken place had the SFA and SPFL had sanctioned clubs for previous misdemeanors of their fans and a “Strict Liability” policy been in place.

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ReiverPosted on6:41 pm - May 21, 2016

While my aim is to monopolise the SFM site tonight I must point out that my contribution may be a bit erratic. I have much to attend to tonight. Myself and auld Cleggy here have decided to stage a coup that will overthrow matron and let us have a night of celebration.
Here I must confide in you and hope that you are capable of keeping a secret but I have had to manipulate Cleggy somewhat. He is in the mid stages of alzheimers and I convinced him that the match this afternoon was the Rugby league final between his team, St Helens, and Warrington. The change of strip that his team had adopted was done to distance themselves from the old team that played prior to the change in rules where handling the ball was not within the rules. He is now ecstatic that his team won.
Our next move is to move matron, who we already have bound and gagged, to the disabled toilet and then we head for the physio’s locker where we intend to liberate the rubbing alcohol. After that the party starts. You are all invited but try to stay under the social works radar. These CCTV cameras can be a pain in the arse. Just knock three times when you arrive and ask for Joe Tortolano.

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incredibleadamsparkPosted on7:08 pm - May 21, 2016

Good game and Hibs thourghly deserved their victory. I thought Rangers looked vulnerable at the back and lacked any great threat up front. Both teams played to win and the players behaved themselves. Also the referee was barely noticeable all game. Worth pointing that out sometimes….

I know emotions were running high for loads of Hibs fans but there really is no excuse for what happened at the end of the game. The statements from Rangers and the SFA are required because of the behaviour of those Hibs fans. 

That there is, so far, no outright condemnation of their actions, I’m guessing because of who their opponents were, is a worrying achillies heel for the SFM. All the headlines should be positive for Hibs. They won’t be now and that’s a real shame. 

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ReiverPosted on7:12 pm - May 21, 2016

I cannot help but be surprised at the speed of reaction from the SFA and TRFC with respect to the invasion of the pitch by Hibs supporters. I cannot help but feel that their reaction has more to do with the Ibrox club’s absence from European football next season than concerns over public disorder. Sure, there were those amongst the “invading hoards” that took it too far but the lack of understanding of a support that have not only waited 114 years for this but have suffered the international ridicule in reference to that record year after year is to say the least insensitive. Mrs Reiver this afternoon returned to the house shortly after the final whistle to find her husband with tears running down his cheeks. He was more confused than she as the 114 year wait had been to him as much a joke as it was to his rival Hearts supporters. Do not ask him why he reacted this way because he does not know. It is one of these unfathomable occurrences that at some time in our lives we all have to confront.
It is easy, in the cold light of day, to say yobbos left their seats and ran onto the pitch, leaving broken goalposts in their wake, but that ignores that we are all human beings with emotions that are difficult to control at times.
Safety at sporting occasions is extremely important but so too is the recognition and acceptance that emotional release is part of every human’s existence.

“Forgive them Lord for they know not what they do”

Not bad for an atheist. Eh?

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HomunculusPosted on7:17 pm - May 21, 2016

MAY 21, 2016 at 19:08

I’ll wait until I find out everything that happened before condemning either sets of fans.

That includes the Hibs fans who went onto the field of play after having won the cup in such dramatic fashion, and the Rangers supporters who also went onto the field of play (not sure why) and gave us all a rousing rendition of their favourite sectarian anthem.

I certainly won’t be basing anything on reports from rags like The Sun or the Record. 

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ChristyboyPosted on7:24 pm - May 21, 2016

And the flares Mr Regan, don’t forget the flares !! 

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helpmaboabPosted on7:26 pm - May 21, 2016

Well done Hibs although the msm will have only one story to tell. Wait and see tomorrow’s papers.

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ReiverPosted on7:29 pm - May 21, 2016


Can i ask that you change your username as, in the state I am finding myself tonight, I am finding it difficult to state my support for your comment @ 191712

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RaymacPosted on7:31 pm - May 21, 2016

Reiner, you’re having a blast aren’t you? Great result and I am in Spain and having to watch the game by BBC Scotland commentary. I could have sworn I saw a page cry. Can that happen? 
Get royally sloshed. Celebrate in style.

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ReiverPosted on7:31 pm - May 21, 2016

“And the flares Mr Regan, don’t forget the flares !! ”

I actaully didn’t notice he was there never mind his apparel.

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incredibleadamsparkPosted on7:39 pm - May 21, 2016

HOMUNCULUS, for any fan to run on to the pitch, destroy a set of goal posts and rip up grass that’s been relayed who knows how many times is behaviour I have no problem condemning. 

I’m basing that on what I saw on the TV. I have no idea what is in the Record or the Sun. 

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ReiverPosted on7:46 pm - May 21, 2016

I think I will spend the rest of the evening at a local seance.

My old man never witnessed what I have today. He was a grumpy old bugger mind you,always with a pessimistic view of the game. We could be four nil up and he would say ” I don’t fancy our chances here”. Well dad, I am going to tell you, via the services of this medium, that your predictions are shit. I can at long last look to the future with optimism.

I may not leave behind an happy medium but I don’t care cos I’m ecstatic.

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RyanGoslingPosted on8:00 pm - May 21, 2016

I wish to take absolutely nothing away from Hibs, it is a great occasion for them and they definitely earned it. If nothing had happened at the end then I would have posted a congratulatory comment to Reiver and gone back to my sorrow.

But people coming on here and defending the pitch invasion, criticising a perfectly just statement from Rangers and the SFA are to my mind utterly ridiculous. I can say with complete confidence that if Rangers had won and their fans had invaded the pitch and run to the Hibs’ end there would be no comments appearing on here saying “well they’ve had a really tough few years, you can understand it”. There would be outright condemnation with no sympathy or understanding, and rightly so.

It’s not just Hibs; our fans invaded the pitch as well and utterly deserve the condemnation, and I’ve stated many times in the past how I feel about the sectarian songs. But this is already getting ridiculous on here. Not one, not ONE word of unqualified condemnation of opposing fans entering the field of play and attacking the opposition players and staff. And that is only because the opposition and staff who were attacked represented Rangers. I would not participate in this community if I thought it was an “anti-Rangers” forum, but I think some of you making these comments need to take a long hard look at yourselves and ask if you would take the same point of view if events had been reversed.

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HomunculusPosted on8:11 pm - May 21, 2016

MAY 21, 2016 at 20:00  I think some of you making these comments need to take a long hard look at yourselves and ask if you would take the same point of view if events had been reversed.


I don’t think I have actually heard Hibs fans singing a banned sectarian song, either during a game or on the pitch after having lost a game. I believe that if they had lost today they would simply have left the stadium and made their way home.

To be fair I don’t see an awful lot of their games though.

As to condemning the Hibs support, like I said earlier I will wait until I have more details before doing that. To be fair I didn’t condemn the Barca support last week when they invaded the pitch after having won La Liga, I put it down to them being genuinely excited after having won a dramatic league on the last day of the season.

That doesn’t mean I support what they did, it’s just that I can maybe understand it a bit.

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bluPosted on8:17 pm - May 21, 2016

The tv pictures didn’t show it but reports suggest that some Hibs fans couldn’t just glory in winning today. It’s a shame because it was great match, credit to two teams playing the game properly – trying to win rather than not lose. Hibs have extended the oc/nc debate too. JJ will say it was a fix.

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easyJamboPosted on8:21 pm - May 21, 2016

RyanGosling May 21, 2016 at 20:00
Ryan I have now had the chance to review some of the video footage now emerging.

I have no problem in condemning the Hibs fans who invaded the pitch, although I acknowledge that the majority did so in exuberance.
I have no problem condemning those Hibs fans who taunted and assaulted Rangers players and officials.
I have no problem condemning Hibs fans whose intent was to get close to, and goad Rangers fans.
I have no problem condemning those Rangers fans who reacted and responded by invading the pitch themselves.
I have no problem condemning the Rangers fans that I saw giving a good kicking to a couple of idiotic Hibs fans who got too close.

The scenes that followed the final whistle were totally unacceptable and I hope that all those involved in criminal activity are identified, charged and punished.

As for the response of the authorities, I hope that the Scottish Government puts pressure on the SFA, SPFL and the clubs to implement Strict Liability.  It would be a awful contradiction if Rangers was to vote against Strict Liability given their rightful indignation and the tone of their statement about the post match troubles.  

Edit: Today’s events will make any attempt to repeal the Offensive Behaviour legislation extremely difficult.

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ReiverPosted on8:24 pm - May 21, 2016

It is not an evening where I should even be contemplating serious issues but I feel I must. Condemnation of the pitch invasion would be well justified should it be accompanied by the SFA’s condemnation of sectarian singing at many matches involving TRFC but it isn’t. Nor is it supported by our police force. Supporters of Celtic were arrested following sectarian chants at Kilmarnock and yet, a week earlier, we had broadcast on TV and radio an example where in excess of 10,000 supporters of TRFC supporters chanted sectarian songs but where, until present, no charges have been brought. As with refereeing decisions all that the average football following punter looks for is a consistency but it is always highlighted by its absence.
Look at the pitch invasion today and ignore the emotional involvement that 114 years of failure adds, what would the reaction have been had Hibs been playing Aberdeen, ICT or Dundee. I don’t think I need to give the answer to that. Should the reaction of fans have to be differentiated depending on who the opposition is? Does that not say more about the opposition than the team that the pitch invading fans support?
Be clear though that I do not condone pitch invasion but I do condemn the faux outrage from our administrators that is defined by who the “offended” team are.

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SmugasPosted on8:24 pm - May 21, 2016

I repeat.  I do not condone pitch invasions.  I do appreciate the fans passions that some have chosen to at best ignore and at worst taunt over the last four years or so.  There are those in authority who have been paid significantly for the privilege who clearly didn’t.  Today was not as a result, far from it.  But it was symptomatic.  

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shugPosted on8:31 pm - May 21, 2016

No disrespect intended but with all the TV cameras, press photographers and mobile phone cameras at hampden today there should be an avalanche of video and photographic evidence of the so called assaults I for one saw nothing like that unless of course you can call getting shouted at assault I watched the keeper getting some verbals but it looked like he just strolled away and off the park I saw most of The rangers players including kenny miller walking off the pitch none of them looked as if they had been physically abused,and given that the SMSM are the great defenders of all things to do with The rangers they will be desperate to get that evidence out there for all to see I’m sure.I will await the evidence with baited breath

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easyJamboPosted on8:37 pm - May 21, 2016

shug May 21, 2016 at 20:31
Check this one viewed from the Rangers end re Hibs fans taunting Rangers fans then a couple of Hibs fans getting a kicking.  There are also a number of photos circulating that show what looks like punches being thrown at Rangers players.

And who is the official kicking out at a Hibs player in this clip?

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Cluster OnePosted on8:38 pm - May 21, 2016

For those that say that SFM is more a celtic blog?
can i just state then, congratulations to Hibs
well done.
nothing celtic about that post

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easyJamboPosted on8:44 pm - May 21, 2016

easyJambo  May 21, 2016 at 20:37
And who is the official kicking out at a Hibs player in this clip?
On second viewing, I think it is a Hibs fan rather than a player

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shugPosted on8:48 pm - May 21, 2016

EJ looks like and actually thrown are two different things and still pics can be carefully edited let’s see if 1 is of Kenny Miller but if this is really the case then hopefully the culprits will be identified but I bet not 1 fan of the new club will be identified and the language I heard on the video you put up dearie me my face is still red never heard such foul words in my life 16

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campsiejoePosted on8:53 pm - May 21, 2016

First of all congratulations to Hibs and all of their supporters
They won the game on merit, fairly and squarely
The pitch invasion however cannot be condoned or glossed over, and both sets of fans are equally culpable

The TRFC statement is a deliberate attempt, in my opinion, to place the blame entirely on the Hibs supporters, and video evidence, emerging via YouTube, appears to show that both sides carry responsibility for the post match scenes

Neither can the SFA escape criticism for what happened
This was their game, organised under their banner, and they to have a degree of responsibility for what happened

I await with interest the outcome of the various inevitable enquiries

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John ClarkPosted on9:05 pm - May 21, 2016

ReiverMay 21, 2016 at 20:24
‘…Should the reaction of fans have to be differentiated depending on who the opposition is? Does that not say more about the opposition than the team that the pitch invading fans support?..’
It certainly does, Reiver.
And the SMSM, from that little nyaff Chick onwards, had not a word to say about the invading TRFC fans, of course.
The Match Commander should get his/her jotters for not gearing up for a TRFC defeat : the gee-gees and the 150 polis should have lined up facing the TRFC end to stop sour-grapes nastiness.
And seriously, to hear Regan say that the pitch invasion ‘damages the reputation of Scottish Football’ was laughable- alleged bad behavior could never do as much damage to the reputation of Scottish Football as the very Governing body has done by its collusion in deceit and sports dishonesty for two thoroughly dodgy clubs, RFC(IL) and TRFC Ltd.
We will no doubt get the usual wringing of hands and knee-jerk reactions from politicos and legals and editors: none of whom was ready to take action to expel the most corruptly run football club this country has known, but rather assisted in its cheating and protected it by myth-making.

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ReiverPosted on9:14 pm - May 21, 2016

I feel I need to voice my objections to Sixtaesevens recent post where he says –
“I am SO happy that Hibs have now got that monkey off their back.”

I can’t help feeling that this is overly sexist. Personally I feel that Leeann Dempster’s contribution has been valuable beyond measure despite her refusal to engage in conversation with me.

Shame on you Sixtae.

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shugPosted on9:19 pm - May 21, 2016

EJ the second  video def looks like a The rangers official I say that as his tackle was well late 1921

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shugPosted on9:21 pm - May 21, 2016

Ach well all’s fair in love and war and I’m not gonna let it spoil my decade lol.

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theredpillPosted on9:27 pm - May 21, 2016

oh hibs supporters why invade the pitch it was all good till then,now the unbiased inquiry commences .

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Bill1903Posted on9:34 pm - May 21, 2016

Very late goal would be the cause but not justification for the pitch invasion.
I thought Rangers play a nice brand of passing football but don’t have a plan b.
Hibs were more desperate for it I thought.
All the headlines down here are about the trouble and not about what was a great game to watch for the neutral.
Im not sure what the punishment will be as the SMSM will be after blood.
The referee had a great game I thought really let the game flow.
Well done to reiver and the other Hibs fans on here 

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Cluster OnePosted on9:34 pm - May 21, 2016

SHUGMAY 21, 2016 at 20:31 13 0  Rate This 
No disrespect intended but with all the TV cameras, press photographers and mobile phone cameras at hampden today there should be an avalanche of video and photographic evidence of the so called.
The rangers players including kenny miller walking off the pitch (SCUNNERED)none of them looked as if they had been physically abused,and given that the SMSM are the great defenders of all things to do with The rangers they will be desperate to get that evidence out there for all to see I’m sure.I will await the evidence with baited breath
desperate to get that evidence out there…Mmmmmmm

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easyJamboPosted on9:46 pm - May 21, 2016

I see that Martin Bain has not allowed his previous Oldco connections get in the way of him getting a job as CEO of an EPL club

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ReiverPosted on9:53 pm - May 21, 2016

I have sailed through a day of emotional highs and have posted words composed under the effect of those highs but let me now bring myself down to the ground and state what my feelings are regarding the post match events.
I do NOT condone the pitch invasion irrespective of which team these people support. In a month where something as singularly insignificant as one person’s decision can be shown to result in so many deaths as was the case at Hillsborough the actions of each and every individual involved today must be viewed with that context in mind. We are all responsible for our own reactions no matter what the mass has decided. Join in and it is not the mass’s responsibility should damage or injury be the result, it is solely that of the individual. So if you were on the pitch today and elsewhere on the pitch trouble erupted, you too are responsible. Having said that, it is the organisers responsibility not to differentiate between the offenders. No case should be made against one side or the other, all should be treated as individuals no matter the colour of the favours they wear. Even-handedness is the most important skill required at this point. Let us ensure that the conduct of the players on the park is treated differently from the fans on the park. Let’s not taint one with the other’s misdeed. The game was won through the performance of the players not through the actions of those that left their seats. Any attempt by the authorities to conflate the two will be seen as yet another attempt by the authorities to warp the true picture. Punish the culprits not those that they support nor those innocents whose only guilt is to wear the same colours as the culprits.

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wottpiPosted on10:10 pm - May 21, 2016

Given the previous four year, had T”Rangers had a cup victory today and secured Euro football for next season would I have excepted a degree of exuberance that may have had led to some fans flooding onto the pitch -YES
Would I have condoned such behaviour. While understandable  – NO.

Therefore while I understand the Hibs fans exuberance, their actions should be not be condoned by anyone one.

The manner in which today’s game was managed by the authorities need a serious investigation. 

At least two smoke bomb/flares from T’Rangers end, one pitch invasion by Hibs fans, the usual response of sectarian singing from the supporters of the club from Ibrox. All clearly visible and heard on the BBC.

I will reserve judgement on players and officials being assaulted until decent evidence is produced.

I do however note that claims of Kenny Miller being knocked unconscious seem to have been denied by his wife.


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Kentes1Posted on10:23 pm - May 21, 2016

I will try again as the post doesn’t seem to have gone through before.
I see that the BBC commentators are as impartial as ever, after all the criticism of Celtic fans over the use of flares  the only comment I heard was that the flare used by ‘the’ rangers today just added to the atmosphere (I think it was just after another Hibs/Stokes chance) was the flare they used a more health and safety recognised flare than the ones used by the Celtic fans hence the reason for the no criticism.
While on a sort off rant can anyone tell me what defines a banned song and who decides what constitutes a banned song I am just a little confused after hearing the special songs that the untouchables sang today ok sort off rant over

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Corrupt officialPosted on10:25 pm - May 21, 2016

Some footage here of Fotheringham being pushed about.

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shugPosted on10:25 pm - May 21, 2016

As a wee aside any talk about the pyrotechnics at The rangers end today.

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justshateredPosted on10:25 pm - May 21, 2016

As bad as the scenes at the end of today’s match were what will be the outcome of, what I’m sure will be an SFA enquiry?
Motherwell were fined for their fans invading the park after the playoff win last year but that was because their security was not deemed adequate. The blame of inadequate security here lies at the door of the SFA; it is the SFA’s occasion, it is the SFA that are in charge of the stadium.
Will the SFA fine themselves?
Obviously not as I’m sure a hasty re-write of the rules will be made or an “at the discretion of the Board” decision will be taken.
As I have left the sport due to the naked corruption brazenly displayed by the very people responsible for its integrity I can only now comment from the outside.
The SFA are now responsible for the whirlwind which will now sweep through Scottish football. They created a monster; they pandered to and defended that monster. They have shown contempt for every other club, and every other supporter, in the country.
Unfortunately, as I stated some months ago, the people taking the places of the ones walking away at all other clubs are, I believe, the hard core element. They are NOT being enticed back by the “End of the Journey”. They have not missed “The Rangers”. No they are here to antagonise, and poke and prod, the monster whenever they can. That the monster will explode is unfortunately completely predictable but the blame for that is to be laid at the door of the SFA, the leagues, and the very clubs themselves.
Yes the clubs themselves because they ultimately were too timid, impotent, or corrupt themselves to call the authorities to heel.
It did not need to be like this.
Four years ago decisions should have been taken to change our sport for the better. Those decisions may have brought a new era for our sport, given it a new lease of life, and laid the ground work for a different way for our sport to be governed.
That window of opportunity has now gone and it is not coming back.
I’m sure in the after match pitch invasion supporters, even players, were hurt but unfortunately as I no longer believe the media in Scotland I really do not know where to look for the truth.
A media which will not report assaults and intimidation of their own colleagues simply cannot be trusted on any subject they care to write about. Ultimately anything they do write about concerning sport I don’t believe. They are a disgrace to their profession and as big a part of the problem as any other player in this sordid tale.
For those injured today. I hope you recover soon.
Congratulations to Hibernian for winning the cup at long last. On the field of play at least they showed that there is still some romance in the sport.
Unfortunately it is the aftermath that will dominate the papers simply because the result was not the one the media wanted so they will revert to type and report on any negative aspect they can. That is what they have done for the last four years after all.
 I truly believe they will get more chances next year if the scenario painted above comes to pass.

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wottpiPosted on10:28 pm - May 21, 2016

With regard to the Football side of things, today was a fine example of what I said a few weeks back.

T’Rangers will play nice tippy happy stuff. The pundits and commentators wax lyrical but fail to note that very few chances are being created.

You can’t  deny that Miller still manages to comes up with the goods and Halliday  (like McKay in the semi) hit an absolute peach. However other than Miller’s header off the bar that was about it.

Meanwhile the Beeb stats have Hibs with 40% possession, 21 shots with 8 on target (as opposed to 60%,  7 & 2)

The stats are there for Warbs to take into King to show where he needs to strengthen in the off season for an assault on the Premiership and a Euro spot.

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ProhibbyPosted on10:34 pm - May 21, 2016

‘Evening all!  Though I haven’t posted for a while, I still regularly follow the debate on here.  I can only say that I am greatly saddened that so much of the focus on here and in the daily trash is likely to be on the appalling behaviour of Hibs fans at the end of today’s match.  The invasion of the field by Hibs fans was totally out of order and no doubt the Club will pay a penalty for it.  It was insane behaviour and I hope each and every individual who, regardless of their allegiances, engaged in criminal behaviour faces the consequences their actions deserve.  And, of course, I trust Hibs to pay any fine imposed!  Having said that,  today’s match was a fine example of good entertaining football, full of passion and skill.  Well done to both sides for that.

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shugPosted on10:51 pm - May 21, 2016

I will say this though Kenny miller is some guy he is fitter faster and leaner than he every was as a youngster he might still have a couple of seasons left.

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TrisidiumPosted on10:54 pm - May 21, 2016

Congratulations to Hibs on their fine win today. It was thoroughly deserved. The Hibs Scottish Cup Sabbatical which ended today after 114 years was the cause of my secretly hoping they would beat Celtic in 2013. I am glad that at last they have put that hoodoo to rest.

The events after the game do not in any way reflect badly or otherwise on the performances of the players of both teams who served up an excellent, exciting, entertaining cup final. The performance, the result and legacy of today’s match is still intact no matter what happened afterwards, however as football fans, few of us will be happy with how things panned out.

My first thought on seeing the huge numbers of Hibs fans run onto the park, no matter how we rationalise their exuberance after 114 years, was that they were gonna spoil it for the players (After 49 years, it is still a regret for Celtic players in Lisbon that the fans, no matter how good natured, robbed them of something that night). That to me was stupid and selfish of the body of the fans, and if not beyond the pale, still regrettable.

My thoughts on seeing some of the Hibs fans move towards the Rangers fans are less equivocal. It was criminally wrong, and the morons who were involved were surely expecting, perhaps even hoping for, a response. Same goes for the Rangers fans who decided to meet confrontation with more confrontation. The violence on both sides is  something that we condemn without reservation.

That was as much as I was able to see from the TV coverage of the match.

There are allegations of other of other incidents too, such as players being assaulted, and officials assaulting fans. Rangers have had their say, but Hibs have not (at the time of writing) had theirs. There is a lot of heat, and little light offered elsewhere. You will forgive me if I disregard the accounts of Chick Young, and fans of both Rangers and Hibs on social media.

The Rangers players contributed a great deal to the spectacle that the game was, and they participated throughout in a sporting and fitting manner. If there were any physical attacks on  them then we ALL must condemn that also.

Footballers being attacked at their place of work is unacceptable. Those who involve themselves in attacks such as that are contemptible. Likewise fans (of whatever team) being assaulted.

If these allegations are corroborated or backed up by physical evidence then we must be unequivocal in our condemnation of those actions.

I hope the post-match events do not detract too much from the Hibs’ fans joy and happiness at having won the Scottish Cup today.

There is no excuse at all, no rationale, for participating in violence. but I also think we should belay the rush to judgement and wait for the outcome of the (what I hope is wide-ranging) SFA inquiry and any criminal proceedings before we begin to accept rumour as fact too. 

The video clip which shows the moron pushing the Rangers goalkeeper is outrageous. I can only imagine how scared that young man must have been, isolated as he was at that moment. I was scared for him just watching it and I have to say that I can understand Rangers’ immediate reaction on the basis of that incident alone. I hope they get hold of that arse.

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RyanGoslingPosted on11:03 pm - May 21, 2016


When there is a very clear video of the Rangers goalkeeper being lamped do we really need to wait for an official enquirer?

This will be my last post on the subject but I’m still astonished at people coming on here to defend the Hibs fans attacking players and running to the Rangers fans. There is a shocking appetite to try to put the blame at the door of Rangers and their fans.

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John ClarkPosted on11:10 pm - May 21, 2016

justshateredMay 21, 2016 at 22:25
‘….Will the SFA fine themselves?’
Can anyone remember what action, if any,  was taken against the clubs ( the poor old languishing-in-liquidation RFC and the other finalist) after the cavalry charge game in 1980?
Action was taken against the rest of us, of course, by legislation that didn’t let us take a can of export into a football ground.

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RyanGoslingPosted on11:19 pm - May 21, 2016

Whataboutery, John Clark?

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easyJamboPosted on11:23 pm - May 21, 2016

John Clark May 21, 2016 at 23:10
Both clubs were fined £20,000 in 1980. Not an inconsiderable sum in those days.  200 were arrested.

As “Justhatered” pointed out earlier, Motherwell was only fined after last year’s play-off for failing to provide adequate security, not for the actions of the fans on the pitch. The SFA was responsible for security today, so can we expect them to fine themselves?

As I have stated earlier, I don’t think the clubs will be sanctioned specifically for the actions of their fans because of the absence of strict liability, but I suspect that the SFA will come up with some invented rule that has been breached by the clubs, if only to deflect from their own failings.

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John ClarkPosted on11:29 pm - May 21, 2016

TrisidiumMay 21, 2016 at 22:54
‘… You will forgive me if I disregard the accounts of Chick Young,..’
You are most heartily forgiven, as far as I am concerned.
I listened to the ‘stupid wee man’ trying to sound like some correspondent of international gravitas,as he reported ‘hearsay’ as fact. A sin of which some have often accused him.
I put the words ‘stupid wee man’ in inverted commas, because I would hope  that being ‘a stupid wee man’ is better than being a disappointed, raging, malicious wee stirrer of a poor loser.
But that’s just my opinion. There may be several other hundred thousands of similar opinions.
Poor little chap.

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John ClarkPosted on11:43 pm - May 21, 2016

RyanGoslingMay 21, 2016 at 23:19
‘Whataboutery, John Clark?’
Not with you there, RyanG, I’m sorry?
There were one or two earlier posts about whose responsibility it was to ensure that pitch invasions didn’t happen, and there was a view that since the venue in the present case was not the home ground of either club, neither club could be held responsible- the fault was the SFAs! And hence the question- can the SFA fine themselves? And that prompted me to ask ( because I did not know!) what happened away back then.
But I know that as football supporters going to a game, the law made it illegal to take in a cairry-oot! ( and we will never know who got the benefit of the cans that were confiscated by (in the early days) the polisman at the turnstile!)

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Bogs DolloxPosted on11:46 pm - May 21, 2016

John ClarkMay 21, 2016 at 23:10 
justshateredMay 21, 2016 at 22:25 ‘….Will the SFA fine themselves?’ _______ Can anyone remember what action, if any,  was taken against the clubs ( the poor old languishing-in-liquidation RFC and the other finalist) after the cavalry charge game in 1980? Action was taken against the rest of us, of course, by legislation that didn’t let us take a can of export into a football ground.
There were ways round that JC. I have a friend who wore fitba soaks underneath his flares and he was able to smuggle two cans of T Lager doon the soaks. So he wiz. When flares went out of fashion the Lager dried up, but hey it was warm oanywiyz.

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RyanGoslingPosted on11:49 pm - May 21, 2016

Apologies John, in re-reading your post and considering the context I may have jumped the gun. 

It first appeared to me that you were suggesting that the riot of 1980 was an example of lenient punishment which may lead to any SFA punishment of Hibs seem draconian. This is in the context of several posts today which have clearly got my back up. So I apologise unrefutedly. 

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John ClarkPosted on11:52 pm - May 21, 2016

easyJamboMay 21, 2016 at 23:2
‘…£20,000 in 1980. Not an inconsiderable sum in those days. ‘
Thank you,eJ….In those days??? In my humble circumstances 20k is still a not inconsiderable sum!1919

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wottpiPosted on11:53 pm - May 21, 2016

RYANGOSLINGMAY 21, 2016 at 23:03

If there is clear evidence of wrong doing you won’t get much argument on here that long drawn enquiries by the footballing authorities are a waste of time.

Just apply a common  sense approach, take a stand and  punish the wrong doers.

It is what we have been wanting to happen  for years!

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John ClarkPosted on11:58 pm - May 21, 2016

Bogs DolloxMay 21, 2016 at 23:46
‘…a friend who wore fitba soaks underneath his flares and he was able to smuggle two cans of T Lager doon the soaks. ..’
And were a’ the stories boot guys usin’ hypodermic needles  to inject gin into lemons or oranges true? Or just an urban myth?10

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John ClarkPosted on12:15 am - May 22, 2016

RyanGoslingMay 21, 2016 at 23:49
‘..Apologies John, ..’
I kind of suspected that you may have missed the context, Ryan, so I needed no   apology : but thank you. It has been quite a busy night!

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shugPosted on12:17 am - May 22, 2016

I wonder If Hibs punishment will be to be banned from Europe I’m sure that will be on the mind of some. 

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Corrupt officialPosted on12:21 am - May 22, 2016

RYANGOSLINGMAY 21, 2016 at 23:03
“When there is a very clear video of the Rangers goalkeeper being lamped do we really need to wait for an official enquirer?”
   Not from me Ryan. I have a habit of believing what I have seen with my own eyes. Although not at the top end of the violence scale, as Tris says, the poor guy must have been bricking it. A very unnerving situation and wrong on all levels.   
   Having said that, an official inquiry is still a necessity. I remember a Millwall supporter taking to the field bedecked in tartan at a Scotland England game, and I also remember an incident with Neil Lennon at Tynecastle, where for reasons beyond my paygrade, it was “Not proven” 
   Bearing in mind the SFA were responsible for security, the outcome may again be above my pay-grade. 

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jimboPosted on12:33 am - May 22, 2016

It is so so sad that the conversation tonight is about the pitch invasion.  Not condoning it but Hibs just won a cup! Here’s a wee song for all the Hibees and us neutrals:

enjoy friends:

BP, I want to hear you playing this next time I hear you playing, thanks.

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Bogs DolloxPosted on12:39 am - May 22, 2016

Corrupt officialMay 22, 2016 at 00:21 
RYANGOSLINGMAY 21, 2016 at 23:03 “When there is a very clear video of the Rangers goalkeeper being lamped do we really need to wait for an official enquirer?”     ————————————————————————————————————————–    Not from me Ryan. I have a habit of believing what I have seen with my own eyes. Although not at the top end of the violence scale, as Tris says, the poor guy must have been bricking it. A very unnerving situation and wrong on all levels.       Having said that, an official inquiry is still a necessity. I remember a Millwall supporter taking to the field bedecked in tartan at a Scotland England game, and I also remember an incident with Neil Lennon at Tynecastle, where for reasons beyond my paygrade, it was “Not proven”     Bearing in mind the SFA were responsible for security, the outcome may again be above my pay-grade. 


The SFA have failed again and Rangers prove they have the fastest most mendacious PR team the game has ever witnessed.

I suspect that they had a chat about who released the first press release. Darryl was able to let Rangers go first. When in fact it should have been the other way round.

I note the post above mentions Millwall. Which prompts a quiz question. Which Scottish Hooligan firm took 300 numbskulls to London to attack Millwall in a pre season friendly?

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John ClarkPosted on12:41 am - May 22, 2016

Corrupt officialMay 22, 2016 at 00:21
‘.. Bearing in mind the SFA were responsible for security, the outcome may again be above my pay-grade. ‘
  And there you have it!

The damage done by our Football Authorities by
their craven failure to deal with a delinquent club ,
and their readiness to break rules to favour that  delinquent club, 

and then,on the demise of that favoured club, their readiness to favour a brand new club by allowing it to claim to be the self-same delinquent club,
is immeasurable.

No one with any ordinary, every-day savvy would readily accept  that  any investigation by the Football Authorities could in any sense result in anything like a truthful outcome.

because we know from experience, that the SFA is anything but…

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TrisidiumPosted on1:09 am - May 22, 2016


In the case of Foderingham, where the evidence is clear, the arse who attacked him should be found and impounded. No need to wait for any enquiry.

I think what we do need to wait for, is a considered diagnosis of ALL of what happened, how it happened, and why it happened, before deciding where and in what proportions blame – if any – is to be attributed.

From an emotional standpoint, I feel sorry for the Hibs’ fans who were not involved in the stupidity and criminality that went on. The 1980 cup final, despite being a win for my club, was tarnished because of the trouble post-match. The difference between that day and today is that today’s game was a great, entertaining big-dipper spectacle which doesn’t deserve to be tarnished – and did not escalate into the full blown riot of the 1980 episode.

I have to say that I am pleased that the papers seem to be treating the stories (of the game and its aftermath) as two separate ones – which they are. There is a football story, and a story about some disgraceful behaviour by some fans which again throws a spotlight on the ability of the administrators of the game to govern it properly. The latter should in no way diminish the achievement of the former; nor should the former mask the serious issues thrown into relief by the latter.

I should also say Ryan, that although I – like most SFM contributors – was hoping for a Hibs win today, the Rangers players won my admiration for the spirit of sportsmanship in which they played the game, and their graceful acceptance of defeat. Wes Foderingham, who had a good game in my opinion, was a credit to his profession in the way he handled the horribly oppressive situation he was thrust into by those thugs. He and his team-mates won some friends today – and in the long run it may be that Rangers gained more than they lost from the occasion.

I don’t think you should conflate the genuine grievances felt by people towards RFC and TRFC with unconditional hatred for everything connected to them. I know that Rangers fans do so all the time on social media, but I would like to think that you have a better understanding of our community than that.

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TrisidiumPosted on1:38 am - May 22, 2016

Another reason why we shouldn’t rush to summary judgement on claims made today – and credit to Kenny Miller and his missus;

and for balance and context;

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Corrupt officialPosted on1:40 am - May 22, 2016

   I wonder who will be the first to say, “If only we had facial recognition cameras” as a cop-out?


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upthehoopsPosted on7:58 am - May 22, 2016

Great win for Hibs, deserved winners of the game.  Interesting stat that Stokes had more attempts on goal than the entire Rangers team.  Says it all.
The match day was spoiled by two things – Hibs fans invading the pitch, promptly followed by the expected rendition of Billy Boys from the Rangers fans.  You can almost excuse the Hibs fans, so much disappointment then finally triumph.  The moment obviously got the better of them.  What can you say about Rangers fans?

This will run and run for some time. Fans invading the pitch and allegedly attacking players is simply not on. It’s a real shame because had the Hibs fans stayed where they were their victory would have got the occasion it deserved. Over to the SFA on the match security aspect, although we can’t trust them to tell the truth or do  the right thing about anything.  I switched to Radio Scotland at the end of the game and they clearly described, more than once, that there was fighting between rival fans in one area of the pitch. This seems to have been lost in subsequent media reports and it has certainly been lost in Rangers statement. 

As for the game itself it showed that Rangers are miles off the level we have been told they are at. The media can only do so much for Warburton. Manager of the year? Crazy!

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Kentes1Posted on9:53 am - May 22, 2016

Up the hoops-23rd May 07.58.
The part about both sets of fighting was not lost in THE rangers(deflection) statement because I am sure that they actually praised the restraint of their fans as no doubt it will be like other incidents it wasn’t  us it was Chelsea supporters pretending to be THE rangers fans or maybe they are saying it was bibs fans dressed as them to deflect away from them.
Still no excuse for the behaviour of both sets of fans majority or minority hmm!!!

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CastofthousandsPosted on10:06 am - May 22, 2016

I didn’t watch or listen to the cup final yesterday. I sensed by the lack of celebration in the City Centre yesterday evening that Hibs may have won. This impression was underscored by the relatively short duration that the police helicopter hovered over my Cowcaddens abode.

I generally avoid all forms of media but eventually my purdour was broken by a Radio 4 sports news bulletin. Radio 4 wouldn’t necessarily report on the premier cup tournament of Scottish Football and hadn’t done in an earlier bulletin. The only reason I had been detained so long on the outlet was due to an excellent adaptation of Lewis Grassic Gibbon’s ‘Cloud Howe’ (not sure of the spelling having never read the book).

Once the cat was out the bag I logged onto youtube to have a look.

The first clip was long so I thought, excellent; all the goals and the cup presentation. Instead I got the last goal and the pitch invasion.

Andy Walker summarising, exhibited all the characteristics of a propaganda model adherent. No qualification of the historic nature of the win for Hibs which would have added balance to his rhetoric. It was straight to ‘its a disgrace’, which I suppose it was but such a delightful and ebullient one that you really had to temper any mild feeling of outrage with a huge slice of goodwill.

I could see no signs of violence although admittedly the camera didn’t do much zooming in. The fans were delirious and I took this to be a symptom of their own scepticism pre-match of their likelihood of winning. They should not have invaded the pitch but I couldn’t help forgiving them at that moment.

I thought the Police dealt with the situation admirably. They quickly cordoned off the two opposing sets of fans and then systematically cleared the pitch with horses used in a thoughtful but effective manner. Sometimes a few Police addicted to Amercan cop shows let their fellow brethren down by getting carried away with their own self importance. In this case it was a model of efficiency; de-escalating the situation and managing volatile circumstances in a professional manner. It was something of an antidote to Hillsborough.

I’d imagine that Andy Walker feels it necessary to prostrate himself before the altar of mammon in order to ensure his future crust. It is regrettable that he should be swept up in such a media milieu. I think he is generally a good summariser given my limited exposure to the media. It is a pity he feels it so necessary to toe the party line and so vehemently. It probably says as much about the party line as it does about Andy.

I think they probably had to cancel any parading of the cup on the field in the circumstances. If there had been another invasion it would not have looked good for Hibs or the Police.

Well done Hibs. Well done Police Scotland

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jimboPosted on10:10 am - May 22, 2016

Congratulations to Hibs! 04

I wouldn’t be too hard on the police & stewards for what happened.  When hundreds of fans, in a matter of seconds decide to run on to the pitch what can you do?

The vast majority of those fans had no ill intent.

In a prison, it is often the case that 3 or 4 officers are in charge of 100 cons.  If the cons. decide to riot there is not much the officers can do.  Much depends on mutual trust and respect, I know that will sound strange to most folk but it is how it is made manageable.

I’ve seen worse.

Remember the goal posts at Wembley and the turf?  We laugh at that now.

Go on Hibs enjoy your day.

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AllyjamboPosted on10:43 am - May 22, 2016

As is my normal habit, I changed channels at the final whistle (nothing to do with avoiding the cup presentation, I just can’t stand the sh@t the commentators give out and did exactly the same at end of FA Cup final), so I knew nothing of the post match trouble until this morning, and having heard it reported without mention of TRFC supporters, assumed it was a storm in a teacup to deflect from the media’s favourites’ defeat. Sadly I was wrong. While I find the Hibs fans running on the pitch as fully understandable (football is the most emotional sport on the planet, and when you win such a big game, the desire to be a part of that ultimate moment is huge), the violence (however exaggerated by the media) was not. 

The message down here in England, delivered, no doubt, via information passed on by the SMSM, could reasonably be taken as, Hibs win cup then their fans cause Scottish football major embarrassment, while ‘Rangers’ fans look on in all innocense, even in defeat. No mention that there were supporters of both sides on the pitch ‘scrapping’. I’ll try to test that out whenever I talk to anyone who paid attention to the reports down here.

The game itself was a real ding-dong afair, with good football from both sides and enough mistakes to create chances and the excitement that that always causes. I must say, though, that, unless Celtic have success in Europe next season, they have maybe wasted a lot of money on Brendan Rodgers, for I doubt they need a new manager if what Rangers have to offer is all they fear. Their passing play was fine, and they seemed to create acres of space in midfield, but they needed that space to have time to control the ball and turn, by which time Hibs had had time to get into position to block the space between half-way and the penalty box. In fact, they reminded me of Hibs in their play-off matches, having lots of possession, but no great idea of how to use the ball to killer effect where it counts.

Kenny Miller has taken a lot of stick on social media over his advancing years, but I must say, he played the first half like a very young man and was TRFC’s most influential player in the Hibs’ half. It was as he tired that Hibs were able to take charge and look like the most likely winners. He will tire even quicker next season and any comparable replacement will cost a fair bit.

No cup-winning bounce in ST sales, and no European football to boost early season income, so projected player budget must be curtailed, common sense prevailing. King’s current bluster will have to be more than that if they are to do anything that will keep the fans turning up next season. Still, with no Europa Cup involvement we will all have to accept that there is a good reason for all the top transfer targets, such as Joey Barton, to, reluctantly, look to pursue their careers somewhere other than Ibrox. Nothing to do with money or attractiveness of playing for ‘Rangers’, of course. No, it will be (spun as) down to the lack of quality opposition in the Scottish Premiership. In other words, it’ll be down to everyone else!

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shugPosted on10:50 am - May 22, 2016

EJ I wouldn’t bet on there being no European football at the crumbledome next season seems like plans are afoot to sort this out.The rangers fans are shocked that hibs were even given the trophy.

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shugPosted on10:58 am - May 22, 2016

Sorry I of course meant AJ LOL.

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jimboPosted on11:12 am - May 22, 2016

I watched the game yesterday in my local, with my jambo pal.  I sat down and said ‘right who are we supporting?’ 21 He said T’Rangers but I’ve got £20 on Hibs!  (Win Win)

Anyways, it got me back to 2006,  Hearts V Gretna, he went to the game and I was left with his lovely wife who is a Jamboette,  and out of sympathy I had to restrain myself from supporting the Borders Club.  In a mainly Celtic pub.  I think I got away with it.  Ten years on we are still good friends but I didn’t miss the wall yesterday, I honestly  think he would have rather have lost the £20! 162115
Go on Hibees.

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Jingso.JimsiePosted on11:19 am - May 22, 2016

Thanks Jonny, that’s really helpful. I’m surprised you could even reach the keyboard with your chest puffed out like that:

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ReiverPosted on11:31 am - May 22, 2016

OK guys, down to business.

I am looking for suggestions as to how we keep concerns alive and in public view over the next six weeks.

We now face the close season and the attraction of the Euros to deflect our efforts. By the time the first of our teams line up in the UEFA qualifiers we risk having the TOG report lost to the mists of time.

My team winning yesterday did us no favours as we could have kept things going arguing the validity of TRFC’s license to play. But not now, so what should we be doing?

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AuldheidPosted on11:40 am - May 22, 2016

I just find it all rather sad, the state of our game I mean.
Even the good times turn bad.
Its the culture and changing a culture can take a long time, but even longer if the need for change is not recognised.
There are plenty of Web Pages an changing culture but I liked this one.
” First of all, recognizing you won’t be able to convert everyone at once, start with people who have disproportionate influence in the organization. Get them committed to the change, or, failing that, get them out. And once they are committed to change, shine a spotlight on their accomplishments, so others get the message.”

If what happened yesterday is as Stuart Regan says bad for the reputation of Scottish football then how are the SFA and member clubs going to change the culture or will it just be another long session of hand wringing whataboutery?

I despair at times.

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jimboPosted on11:57 am - May 22, 2016

Isn’t it ironic that Pyros were let off, horrible singing, and a pitch invasion happened when the SFA were at home?

Normally they would be pontificating and fining right left and centre.  Who’s to fine?

Ha Ha.

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beatipacificiscotiaPosted on11:57 am - May 22, 2016

RYANGOSLINGMAY 21, 2016 at 17:58

Hibs fans run on the pitch and attack Rangers players and staff and it is excusable, yet Rangers fans are the bad boys for singing a song? Don’t get me wrong, me and my mates were pretty horrified to see the reaction of the Rangers fans, but get a grip of yourself, you can’t just say Hibs fans were fine but Rangers were the baddies. Attacking the players and staff is not on, and according to the media reports I’ve read thus far Rangers fans only responded when the Hibs fans ran to the Rangers end.

I think every sane person is on the same page as this, but whataboutery is in overdrive at the moment.  I don’t know if has been mentioned, the very corner that the Hibs players celebrated the winning goal with fans is where the pitch invasion started.  This, for me, is where it all began.  There are rules about leaving the field of play to celebrate, and you can now see why.  All that said, you can’t blame the players either for how they acted in the moment.  Stewards should have stopped players approaching and celebrating with fans.  Emotions were at boiling point and there were only moments between the final goal and full time.  Hindsight is a wonderful thing, but maybe police should have got some extra cover down to that corner immediately after the goal and celebrations.  There was 2 full minutes for someone to make a decision and deploy the extra cover.

I want to mention one very important element in this story.  The goading of Hibs players and fans has been well documented – “Hibs’d it”.  This originated on Rangers forums and has been perpetuated in the media.  The Hibs players and fans went from disaster to triumph and that single moment of joy overcame them.  I’m a Celtic fan, but from a Hibs family so I know what it means to them.  My old Dad and nephews are all East Road season ticket holders.  They were at the game (not on the pitch, I may add).  Rangers fans, aided by the media, created and perpetuated such a disrespectful term.  Hibs players responded in the best possible way.  Sadly, Hibs fans didn’t.  The fighting that came next is not excusable in any way – a very small number of fans from each side should be ashamed of themselves.  That said, to approach the Rangers fans for a GIRUY is maybe understandable (but not excusable) in the face of weeks of very public goading.  

For the avoidance of doubt, most Hibs fans stayed where they should have in the stands.  I thought the rendition of “Sunshine on Leith” was a beautiful and proud moment.  Most Rangers fans left the stadium quietly at the end of the match.  Both sets of fans had an element that let their club down.  Both sets of fans were let down by the security measures put in place by the SFA and Police Scotland.

To answer your point, Ryan, Hibs fans in no way encouraged Rangers fans to sing songs about wading in the blood of Catholics.  Pitch invasions and pyrotechnics can happen anywhere (and frequently do).  The disgusting bigotry displayed by Rangers fans is something that, sadly, will likely be overlooked by authorities in this mess.

“Sunshine on Leith” on one side and “Billy Boys” on the other, says it all for me.

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