I sometimes think Celtic fans would be better just avoiding the media altogether on certain days.
Today is one of them.
Will no top division club football to speak of yesterday, as we’re still stuck in the awful mind-numbing boredom of international friendlies, there’s not as much out there to feed the media beast as there usually is. What’s that old saying from politics?
You feed the beast … or the beast eats you.
Well yes, of course. And today so many of the outlets are chowing down on their favourite snack; Celtic, Celtic players, Celtic fans etc etc.
Let’s start at The National, which has an article on the Survival Myth.
I’ve read that article ten times now and I still don’t know whether the writer believes Sevco are a different club from Rangers or what.
He’s worked very hard not to say. But he has no qualms about suggesting that we have all sorts of ulterior motives for saying Rangers are dead, whilst acknowledging that the whole of his profession was virtually united in proclaiming the same.
One of those motives, he says, is jealousy. Apparently we, and the rest of Scottish football, were, and are, jealous of the Murray years. Ha! If wishing made it so, we’d be rending our garments and pulling out our hair, no matter the state of Sevco.
What he misses, of course, is that the “success” of Murray and the club was tainted (and that’s me being kind) by the fact that even without EBT use (which he seems to want to gloss over completely) that Rangers was constructed on a foundation of debt, and that eventually, via the nationalisation of the banks, we all had to pay for it.
He needs to learn the difference between jealousy and anger. We don’t look at the Murray years with envy, but with disgust that they were allowed to get away with it. For over a decade the game in Scotland was rigged, with Bank of Scotland funding the excesses of one club whilst telling others they had to adopt a strict diet of cuts. It’s an historical fact, and one the media has ignored for years. Bank of Scotland held the accounts of nearly every club in the land – Celtic’s included. Only one was allowed to run up enormous, unsustainable debt.
Don’t get me wrong; in one sense I applaud The National for opening this issue up to discussion, and there were a few things in the piece for which they deserve enormous credit, but the basic tenor of the article plays it too safe. There’s a good reason why this stuff is still under discussion; Sevco seems almost determined to go the same way as Rangers, spending money they don’t have, running up debts, abusing the Scottish football system …
The reason this issue hasn’t been put to bed already is that the continuation of this myth – this outright lie – that Rangers survived the fate of Airdrie (see the clip at the bottom of the piece) – has encouraged the Newco to behave in the same way as the old one, with all the attendant consequences for football in this country.
Which brings me to an article today which scraped the muck beneath the barrel, one on the “glory years” of that very same David Murray reign. No acknowledgement of how that “success” was attained. No examination of the issues that still surround it; this was a puff piece, gushing praise on the people who almost wrecked Scottish football. This is revisionism of the worst kind, and the kind that props up the noxious Survival Myth at the same time.
A the same time, this newspaper devoted a page to launching a scathing, highly personal, attack on Efe Ambrose.
Now, I saw the Efe Ambrose mistake in midweek; it’s every bit as bad folk have suggested, but as per usual some in the media have gone completely OTT, as fits their style and their anti-Celtic predilections.
Look at The Sunday Mail’s back page; it is a screaming defence of King, promising Warburton a “war chest” and the accompanying article is filled with snipes at the SPFL and the SFA for actually imposing the EBT fine on the club, whilst ignoring that their failure to pay it until compelled by a judge should have resulted in disciplinary proceedings being opened up against them.
Which brings me, finally, to The Scotsman and an article from Aidan Smith, who’s piece on The International Champions Cup, which has invited Celtic to participate, reeks of spite and is filled with snide comments.
It’s headlined “The International Champions Cup is meaningless” … but apparently not enough to merit being ignored.
Whoever said otherwise though?
Are Celtic pretending this is a major thing?
Are we defining our season by it?
Are we comparing it to the Champions League?
I’ve neither heard nor read that anywhere; it’s a figment of the writer’s febrile imagination.
The whole article reeks. It is bonkers. It is a huge over-reaction to something the writer (who’s a Hibs fan) ought not to be concerning himself with. Precisely none of the issues raised in his article matters to him or to his football team, who, frankly, have more important things to worry about than what Celtic do with their pre-season.
The media never lets me down.
This is Sunday reading, in Scotland. Wow.