For the second time this season, the SFA has got all the press singing from the same song sheet about a “controversial” (say, instead, scandalous) decision which has gone against Celtic. There has clearly been some briefing done and the party line has been pushed into the mainstream. As with the Jota goal, the “party line” is indefensible rubbish.
As I posted yesterday, the offside rule is so clear cut that there’s no room for interpretation. Except that there is one tiny loophole, and it is so ridiculous that I cannot recall it ever being used to justify a decision. When the ball is played by a defender it starts a “new phase of play”. That means that Abada was not offside when he latched onto the mistimed header.
But the key word there is “played” and if the defender wasn’t “trying” to play the ball – in short, if it hits him by accident – then the offside still stands. This, the press has been told, is the reason why the goal was chopped off.
And they’ve swallowed that. The defender who made the header wasn’t actually trying to play the ball. Have you ever heard such obvious rot in your life? That’s a joke, that’s a scandal that we’re being asked to accept that explanation … and it’s just as bad that so many people in the media have done exactly that, or pretend that they do.
I know some of them don’t believe what they are hearing in this case. I know some of them are seriously troubled by it. They have to be. Of all the excuses offered up for what looks, to all intents and purposes, like a wilful attempt to obstruct Celtic’s title tilt, that has to be the worst of the lot. That wasn’t an attempt to play the ball.
Let’s be blunt; even if you don’t think the decision itself brings them game into disrepute offering that as a justification for it certainly does. It makes the implementation of VAR here into a parody of what it ought to be. It makes it a joke.
And it makes Scottish football a laughing stock, and the media which is running with this nothing but paid clowns at the circus. Useful idiots flopping around on the matt, as the Big Top burns and the fans in the concession stands demand to know what they paid for.