The chairman of the Police Federation has said that the Ibrox club itself was partially to blame for the ugly scenes of rule breaking and general lawlessness in Glasgow the weekend before last.
This echoes the condemnation which has already flowed from the government and those sections of the media who do not fear bans from the inner sanctum.
And it comes on the day that Ibrox fans are found to have tested positive for the bug.
The Fed chairman was speaking to BBC Scotland’s Sportsound this evening, and he had a few choice words to say about the decisions made inside Ibrox itself, and how those decisions contributed to the events of that weekend.
“(The club) was pretty disgraceful at the weekend when we had the celebrations in George Square. Not just in terms of their silence in advance but also in allowing their players to go to the corner of the stadium to cheer along, also in the dressing room, cheering people along and taking footage. Those behaviours contributed to the problems. We should not forget that. What we really need to see is the clubs making it clear. The First Minister is right, it’s not one statement or one day’s worth of social media, it is about being persistent and consistent.”
Whilst it is good to hear that kind of clear, ringing condemnation come out of an official agency, and especially that official agency, one can’t help but think that Police Scotland itself still has questions to answer over the way they stood off and allowed crowds to build.
Nevertheless, his words are clearly welcome and the good citizens of this city should be applauding them.
We all know that the Ibrox board and their manager behaved abysmally in allowing what they did, and in point of fact it didn’t even start with the game the day before the one at Livingston for the midweek game, when Gerrard praised fans who had broken the law.
“Official” Scotland remained stonily silent on that.
They remained silent last Saturday after Gerrard drove through the crowds outside pumping his fist.
Official Scotland said nothing when at full time they opened the gates.
Had there been widespread condemnation at that time then maybe the club would have toed the line sooner, but there wasn’t of course.
Still, I am glad that the board over there is getting the scrutiny it deserves.
If the guy is looking for consistency though he’s not going to get it.
You just have to look at the players who have broken the regulations, being made to feel right at home again, back in the first team squad as if nothing untoward had even happened. That club simply doesn’t care.
The only thing that has brought them to the table now is fear, fear of the consequences if they don’t and a belated realisation that they were shamed by the events we saw all over the city and that those pictures went out across Britain and the world.
Doubtless, Ibrox will respond to this with yet another foaming at the mouth statement.
Good. Let everyone see, again, what lunatics are running that club over there.
The entire political strata was united in disgust the weekend before last. Now we know that the police were equally appalled, although they have to answer as to why they let it build.
Ibrox has brought into line with the rest of civilisation for once. You can’t expect them to like it.
The merest criticism of them usually draws a deranged response; I don’t expect that this will be any exception. What was said tonight deserved to be said, however they react to it.
More than that, it obviously needed to be said.
Bravo to David Hamilton of the Police Federation for doing so.