You cannot have but failed to notice that over the course of this weekend the BBC has been indulging in an orgy of Sevco soothing.
Trust our national broadcaster to go where even The Daily Record won’t currently tread.
With their war with the Ibrox hierarchy still ongoing you would think they would be the last people who’d want to give aid and comfort to the horde over there, we reckoned without the lickspittle nature of many in the corporation.
I am sure that, for some people, there is some media value in extended interviews with Ronald De Boer.
I am sure that has merit.
I’m just not sure who those people are or what that merit is, or why we should be subsidising it with license payer’s money.
If De Boer wants to wax lyrical about life at Ibrox and how he chose the club over Manchester United then he’s entirely entitled to do it, but if the BBC is going to do the interview they ought to ask some more pertinent questions than those which Tom English was interested in.
I take issue with a lot of what De Boer had to say; this notion that Celtic and Rangers were the same, two peas in a pod, is old truck and utterly ignorant. We wanted nothing whatsoever to do with them, and that’s doubly true for Sevco.
The idea that we will be eternally chained to them is loathsome to Celtic fans; that’s about as blunt as I can be.
But more, I take issue with the national broadcaster who’s journalists have not had a single substantive discussion on the issue of an SFA inquiry.
Last week, news leaked out that the SFA board wanted to gauge the strength of media support for ignoring this … is interviewing one of the prime beneficiaries of the cheating the BBC’s way of saying they’re on-board with that rancid agenda?
De Boer was a treble winner in a team of ineligible players.
I guess English thought that salient detail was unimportant.
De Boer said not one original thing in his interview. Not one. Nothing we couldn’t have got from a hundred interviews with a dozen outlets. A more direct interview would have asked him about his part in the biggest scandal in the history of the game here. He might have been asked what he intends to do if HMRC comes calling. Does he have the money? His EBT was worth £1.2 million … and he had the side-letter to prove it.
BBC Scotland has forgotten its public interest function.
Soft seat interviews like this do not hit the mark. There was no public interest here; aside from the Sevco fans, those who need cheering up as the Pedro Caixinha circus gets in high gear, nobody was particularly interested. De Boer was here for four years, at the fag-end of his career. His signing at Ibrox was a triumph of style over substance and even with the EBT must have cost them a bomb … he was a symptom of the egomania over there, which eventually led to their downfall.
Frankly, I don’t know why their fans want to look back on that crazy era with anything approaching pride. Their titles were fraudulently gained. Guys like De Boer destroyed their club, by agreeing to something that was so obviously a scam. This is what killed them; this is the ultimate Kool Aid interview. All it needed was Jim Jones on loudspeaker in the background urging his followers to get the “medicine” down their necks and quick.
But if their interest in it is baffling, I cannot help but wonder what function Tom English thought he was serving in wasting his and the national broadcasters time with such fluff when there are big issues going unexplored. The SFA’s board has taken the monumentally destructive decision to ignore the wishes of the clubs in calling for an inquiry into the very era De Boer eulogised in that shameless piece of pro-Ibrox public relations.
My God, are there any real journalists left at BBC Scotland now that Mark Daly has moved on to better things? I love Cosgrove and Cowan, don’t get me wrong, and I think Stuart would do a great job in examining this issue in detail, but these guys are not investigators.
Neither is English, although this was a pretty remarkable examination of De Boer’s rear-end. But as a sports writer I would have thought SFA reform was quite literally on his beat. They sometimes impress you with their incompetence.
The fans aren’t just the only people who care … we seem to be the only ones who actually understand exactly what’s at stake here.