What kind of national news organisation would report on one of their sports teams shaming the nation and choose to react to that by sharing the blame, blowing up controversy elsewhere and heaping even more shame and disgrace on the national sport, without a salient fact or a shred of confirmation?
STV decided tonight that one club’s disgrace wasn’t enough … they decided to blow up the events in Stockholm last night and light a candle for UEFA punishing Celtic as well.
Their broadcast just then was disgraceful, it really was.
They had video footage of the incident involving our fans, shot from as far back as it was possible to get and still be inside the ground.
They showed still photographs which could have showed anything or nothing.
We’ve all seen the footage which they should have used tonight; the lads from the Govan Emerald were close to the action and caught the lot of it.
STV could have nicked that stuff from one of the dozens of social media accounts on which it’s been highlighted, including the links from our earlier blog.
But that would have contradicted their story somewhat, so of course they didn’t do that.
I have spoken to people who were at the game today, and whilst – as I said in the earlier article – I am keeping my powder dry on the whole affair I can tell you that the folk who were there are adamant that there were Swedish fans in the Celtic end. Organised or not, it seems to be a fact.
A lot of those fans are on social media; STV would not have found it hard to interview any of them.
They would not have found it hard to get an offical statement out of Celtic.
They did neither of these things.
Instead they showed that video from the other side of the ground and pondered the possibility that UEFA would do us too.
They were positively salivating over the prospect.
This is just like the hacks, and it fits neatly into the narrative The Evening Times was already spinning last night, without a single fact or detail to support it, just one hack who watched events he didn’t understand, and the drawing of a very big conclusion.
They were desperate for something to write about involving our supporters, and that is reflected in the coverage.
Once again, the behaviour of one club’s fans has been absolutely obscured – the same report had a clip of Gerrard praising the “magnificent” supporters who will be up to their knees in other people’s blood again on Sunday – and their disgrace foisted on to someone else.
What a rotten shower our media are.
This, right here, is why we cannot get rid of this problem, it’s why it never goes away, why it keeps returning over and over and over and over again.
Because it confronted on its own terms, for what it actually is.
And until that changes we’re never going to get rid of the sectarian stain on our national sport.
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