Yesterday I listened, incredulously, to about ten minutes of Clyde. It was shocking.
That show has never had the highest standards, but what I heard was just abysmal and so below what we should hold as an acceptable level of discourse from so-called media “professionals” than you want to weep in despair at the state of them.
For the whole of what I was able to stomach they danced around the issue of Sevco’s violation of testing protocols, blaming other sides, making excuses, claiming that these were teething problems and that the system itself was complicated.
But none of this is complicated. Those other clubs were late in getting results back; the problem there lies with the testing labs, not with football, except that only a handful of clubs has actually invested properly in the equipment that would get those results back quicker.
What the teams in question – Hibs and Motherwell – did was delay or cancel games.
Sevco opted to play a game without many of its players having had an all-clear. You could not get a more blatant disregarding of the rules on this.
“Teething problems” said Clyde. “Club are still learning” was another of their excuses. Apparently Sevco has asked for “clarity” on it all.
What a disgrace that anyone should pretend to accept that this was a mistake.
This is not difficult to comprehend; until players have negative tests they shouldn’t be on the pitch.
There is no confusion about this, and to expect anyone to believe otherwise is an insult.
Why is it always left to bloggers – and Celtic bloggers at that – to make the case that Scottish football needs to be better at enforcing the regulations when it comes to Ibrox? That club is a renegade outfit. Why is it only people like us who try to hold it to account?
This was not the fault of the testing regime.
This was not the fault of government.
It was not the fault of the testing labs.
Sevco took a deliberate, conscious, decision to endanger the safety of their own footballers, those of Dundee Utd and everyone who was involved in putting on that fixture.
To try to diminish the enormity of this or sugar-coat it does a grave disservice to the whole game and to the moves that our government has taken to minimise the risks.
I stopped caring years ago whether our press was shamelessly biased or shamefully gutless. The end result is the same. Failing to do a job when it’s as simple – and important – as it was here though is really beyond belief.
There was no grey area to speak of here, no excuses or argument that could be made in mitigation, but they tried to blow smoke, to find those excuses and to make those arguments.
Ten minutes is all I was able to last.
Beyond that brain cells would have started dying.
Our press, in the main, can be a flat-out disgrace at times. Yesterday that particular outlet found a new low.
You get the impression that there is nothing an Ibrox board could do which would draw full-throated condemnation.
If they appointed Satan himself to the board, our hacks would quote the flowery passages of Milton whilst ignoring the rest.
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