Prior to writing this article I believe that congratulations are in order to Neil Doncaster. Having carefully nursed Rangers through two home ties against part-time opposition, namely Peterhead and Queen of the South, he has now delivered on the jewel in the crown game to BT Sport. If there’s any possibility of Rangers not making the cut-off and Sky not receiving their contracted four games, it’s heartening to note that Stewart Regan will step into the breach in The Scottish Cup and allocate a couple of home ties against minnow teams all the way to another semi-final with Celtic. It’s important to honour contracts with broadcasters. Those expecting sporting integrity should look away now. That was abolished by Sir David Murray in 1998.
I’m indebted to Lady Bear who sent the following photograph from her new iPhone 7:
This site is on the cusp of an exclusive series of articles, chapters in a book, that will capture the imagination of everyone who is interested in Scottish football and the tumultuous events of 2012. Solicitors are pouring over the first two hundred pages and once they have given them a green light, readers of this site will have access to something that one might not expect to find on social media. However when one looks at the mediocrity of what passes for sports journalism in this country, as they cling desperately to the Blue Linings Level 5 Play Book, then the rationale of the author might not be that difficult to fathom. I respectfully invite my readers to watch this space.
As a warm-up for some spiteful exchanges at today’s bun fight at the Hilton, the ballroom blitz, Darren who puts the BS into Cooney, and Keith Jackass, engaged in some light Twitter sparring with Hearts blogger Matt Leslie.
@mattleslie74 @DarrenBSCooney @Pmacgiollabhain hey, great tits though! 👀
Is it not heartening to note that the future of Scottish Sports journalism is in such safe hands? As copy sales drop at the Record to a new low of just 166,592 is Murray Foote happy with the output of his Sports Desk? Are these individuals using office facilities and the Trinity Mirror dollar to engage in petty vendettas? Mr Leslie, who like many of us has noticed that Jackass has forged a career out of plagiarizing Phil Mac’s work, hit back by pointing out how the hapless Record hack can no longer just cut and paste from Phil Mac’s site. Jackass now has to cast his net further afield, for example Germany, for his cut and paste exclusives. The last word on this unseemly spat was asserted by a real journalist, Paul Hayward, who is The Chief Sports Writer at The Daily Telegraph, thus:
“I’ll be having a look at your work, Darren, to see whether it’s “half decent, no more than that.” You sound a real big shot.”
A word to the wise Paul. Cooney runs the bagel school of journalism at the failing Daily Record. Their copy sales are falling off a cliff. He and Jackass will soon be unemployed and unemployable.
The next time you think about paying 65p (or is it 66p?) for a copy of The Daily Record, have a careful look at what your money is supporting. When you get BS truly rattled, as I did, he will tell you that he has a friend who is a solicitor. I’m friendly with a phalanx of barristers in Temple, any one of whom would have Cooney begging for change outside Glasgow Central. His threats have the intellect and menace of a dead sheep.
Rangers have just released the following statement which puts the activities of Foote and his colleagues into sharp relief:
“AFTER having challenged the Daily Record over the veracity of their story ‘Cops: Mob Rule Outside Hampden Blocked Us From Getting In to Help’ (published on May 26, 2016) Rangers have received an apology from the newspaper’s editor.
The Daily Record was hauled over the coals by the newspaper industry watchdog, the Independent Press Standards Organisation (IPSO,) who were scathing in their criticisms of the methods used by the paper.
IPSO ruled the Daily Record failed to corroborate the information they claim they were given via an anonymous email and also found them to be guilty of presenting a ‘significantly misleading impression.’ The Daily Record also failed to ‘demonstrate the accuracy of the serious allegations set out in the article.’
IPSO also stated: ‘In circumstances where Rangers supporters were accused of violence towards police, and other anti-social behaviour, the attempts it had made to support the account of an unidentified source it had been unable to verify were not sufficient to demonstrate that care had been taken over the accuracy of the article.’
Rangers and Club 1872 challenged the paper and in a letter to Rangers Managing Director Stewart Robertson, the editor of the Daily Record admitted the report printed in the edition of May 26 surrounding events in the aftermath of the Scottish Cup final ‘should not have been published.’
The editor also wrote: ‘In this instance the paper failed to maintain the requisite standards. It was a collective failing for which I apologise unreservedly.’”
Mr Hayward’s colleague, Jonathan Liew, has written a stunning piece of satire, The Secret Diary of Joey Barton, which is well out with the intellectual grasp and education of Cooney and his nodding dogs. I found the following excerpt inordinately amusing:
The reporters are camped on the front lawn. They have been there for a week now, asking if my Rangers career is over. The old Joey Barton would probably have stormed out and lamped the lot of them. Not any more. As part of my journey of personal development, I have been reading a lot of Eastern philosophy, and a lot of it is about avoiding direct conflict and letting nature take its course. So I set the dogs on them instead.
Eventually I had to leave the house and brave the media scrum. Fortunately I had to hand a copy of Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl, in which the author concludes that even in moments of extreme suffering, there is an essential beauty to life that can never fully be extinguished.I opened the door, picked up the book, and swung it at the first microphone-wielding melt in sight. As he sank to his knees, blood pouring from his nose, the rest of them scattered like beetles. Like I always say, adversity brings out the best in me.
Got a call from the manager, Mark Warburton, summoning me to Ibrox for clear-the-air talks. A chance to make amends. Look, Mark, I said to him:
“I fully apologise for everything that’s happened. Like you, I just want what’s best for Rangers Football Club. And given that you’ve achieved fuck all in the game, I feel that the best thing for the club would be for you to step down as manager and for me to take over the side for the foreseeable future.”
The idea of Barton as player-manager is less fanciful than one might think given the alternatives of Barry Ferguson or, heaven preserve us, Ally McCoist. I almost fell off my chair when the latter was suggested to me yesterday in correspondence from Charles Green. Was this the carrot which enticed Barton to Ibrox? We now know that Warburton played no part in Barton’s hire. After the Scottish Cup final and the excoriating criticism of Warburton by the directors, with one of whom calling him ‘a fucking disgrace’ as they all put the verbal boot in, was Barton hired as a prospective assistant manager to Davie Weir as they thought that Warburton would walk away? Unfortunately for Warburton, his phone was not ringing off the hook. He even returned a call to Phil Macgiollabhain’s number in the mistaken hope that he was an agent or director with an offer. Mr Warburton had to swallow his pride and return to Auchenhowie. The fact that the board did not back him by sacking Barton is instructive.
I digress. The forthcoming game on Sunday, when Aberdeen hosts the renascent Rangers, is eagerly anticipated. One might well ask why this game, which features a tussle between 4th and 5th in the Scottish Premier League, is being hyped in the media. Could this be due to a group of enterprising Aberdeen FC fans who have posted the following all over town to welcome the Rangers support:
Aberdeen supporters are being encouraged to wear black arm bands to the game. The travelling circus of lavatory interior designers, from the Bauhaus minimalist school, who follow Rangers, may be surprised that they are not being welcomed with open arms in Aberdeen. In some ways their experience might mirror that of Willie Miller:
Willie Miller “When i arrived at the car park at Pittodrie,I said to the girl “Willie Miller BBC Radio” she said “have you been here before?”