Date: 6th September 2019 at 6:58pm
Written by:

Wow.

Anybody still doubt that Football Scotland is simply an Ibrox fanzine with The Daily Record stamp on it?

Stop doubting.

Today’s wonderful editorial piece from ex-Record Sevco blogger Johnny McFarlane should erase all doubts.

Entitled “Five ways Rangers can bounce back from Celtic defeat in style” it is a typical piece of wishful thinking and fantasy land fluff.

It really is something to behold.

I’m not going to chop the article into its wee bits but what I am going to do is look at the “five ways” and have a good laugh over each and every one of them.

The first one reads “Ryan Kent can bring the X-Factor.”

But of course. What else would the first one have been about?

Isn’t it something how much of their faith they are putting in a player who delivered so little last year?

This segment is pure fan-boy guff and nonsense.

McFarlane goes down the road The Herald went down the other day by trying to dismiss the stats (he gets the stats wrong by the way and gives Kent two more assists than he actually got) but can offer nothing to support his assertions, which, actually, the more you read this stuff, comes to resemble little more than a childlike belief in fairies.

The second segment is just as ridiculous; “Steven Gerrard will have learned lessons.”

Oh really?

Because I heard the same thing at the end of last season and here we are again, with people making excuses for him.

What is he, a slow learner or something?

“Few expected Celtic to come to Ibrox and alter their game plan so dramatically,” this section reads.

But did we?

Only if you’ve never watched us this season, and if you think that we’re a weak team both physically and mentally.

Only an idiot would have written that.

“(The) manager would have surely selected Alfredo Morelos had he known a battle of attrition would be in the offing,” it continues.

Because a notorious undisciplined ned is just what you need for those.

This next bit is just brilliant; “With his ease and composure in front of camera, it’s easy to forget that Gerrard is still a rookie manager and learning on the job …”

Maybe it’s just me who wonders what his ability to smile and preen on the telly has to do with his abilities in the dugout.

I can’t figure that one out at all.

The next segment is my favourite of the five … it’s truly brilliant. “Rangers are better as underdogs” it reads, and if you’re laughing reading that you’re not the only one.

This is the most egotistical club in world football, and we’re expected to believe that it was the pressure of going into the game as favourites that did them in?

What pathetic reaching this is, what a pitiful failure to simply accept they were beaten by a better team.

“The change in mind-set will be a work in progress that will take time, but giving Celtic back the ‘team to beat’ tag might not be such a disaster,” he says.

Wow. Is it is just me who thinks that the three time treble winners and eight in a row champions always were the team to beat?

Good God, this is poor, poor fare even for a clickbait site like theirs.

The next segment is entitled “New signings are still to show what they can do.”

Now they are clinging to this one. How sad.

The thing is, everyone’s aware that Jordan Jones is an SPL level winger, that Greg Stewart’s signing is plainly hilarious, that a centre back from England’s fourth tier is not going to set the heather on fire and that if Brandon Barker or Jake Hastie were going to cut it they would never have sent the latter out on loan or signed Kent in the first place.

Helander cost them £3.5 million … we’ll see if he’s worth any of it.

The final section will give you all the giggles as it did me …

“Celtic are not the unstoppable force of the Rodgers era,” it reads.

Here’s the thing; that “era” wasn’t 100 years ago, and since it “ended” we’ve lost a single SPL game and a single European tie.

We’ve wrapped up a league title and won a Scottish Cup.

And, and I will not tire of repeating this, we have at the helm a manager who has one of the best win ratios in the entire history of the club.

Lennon is more than a match for Gerrard.

“You simply can’t lose players like Moussa Dembele, Kieran Tierney and Stuart Armstrong from a team in our league and improve,” this clown writes.

But we lost Armstrong more than a year ago … and Christie is doing just fine, scoring the goals instead.

We lost Dembele this time last year and Odsonne Edouard is doing a fantastic job and I think he’s an even better footballer.

And yes, we’ve lost Tierney … but let’s be blunt. He is about 200 times too good for Scotland and all we have to do to win another treble is replace him with a player who can match the local level. We’ve spent £6 million in the attempt.

We are comfortably in front of every other team in this league.

Our backline is as strong as it’s been in a while.

Those who talk about Benkovic are talking about a player we barely saw.

I always thought – and it’s on the record, you can go and check – that Boyata was seriously over-rated and that we should have taken the £8 million when it was on offer.

Bitton is fit (sort of haha) and has given us options. Ajer, Simunovic and Jullien are better than anyone else in Scotland, by a long way.

Abd Elhamed can play at centre back if we need him to.

We have two good left backs.

We have back up at right back.

Forster is a better keeper than either of the two we had last season.

Our forward line has a fully fit Griffiths and we added Shved and Elyounoussi on either wing … this is a powerful, and improved, Celtic team.

“In short, while Celtic will thrash a lot of teams you suspect they might be more susceptible to the kind of performance blip we have already seen against Dunfermline in the Betfred Cup,” he writes, apparently believing that his own team has not had any “performance blips” when they are the ones who secured points via a direct free kick in one game and a last minute goal in another … and this before we had gone to their ground and beat them.

He’s right too, Celtic will thrash a lot of teams this season, which is something that had become a relative rarity under Rodgers.

This, coupled with Lennon’s fantastic wins per games record, convinces me that we’re still way too strong for the Ibrox club … and the result at Ibrox, which McFarlane seems to think is an aberrant one, proves it.

Football Scotland is not a remotely serious publication and this was not a remotely serious article.

It was a feel-good piece for miserable Sevco fans.

Doubtless it made them feel better.

They really will believe any old nonsense that tells them everything will be alright.

But we are the most successful club in the recent history of the game here … and it’s going to take more than words, simple, silly, fantastical, wish-upon-a-star ridiculousness, if that is going to change. Games are won on the pitch, not in the press.

It is pitiful they’re reduced to this already.

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