Livingston fans, this one is for you.
Little chance of winning tonight in the cup read “no chance” when your manager, who is embarrassingly subservient towards Ibrox, announced in the pre-match interviews yesterday that he thought this was a game to try “the kids” in.
A winner takes all cup game against an opponent which was already making excuses based on its “injury crisis.”
He was actually true to his word.
When the teams were announced tonight two of the players who played particularly well against Celtic and who you’d have expected to anchor the midfield, were left on the bench. Livingston have played the whole first half like a side intent on damage limitation as if you get a medal for that in a knockout game instead of shoved bodily towards the exit door.
It’s as abject and gutless a performance as I’ve witnessed in a long time.
They have made no effort whatsoever, sitting back in their own box and allowing the home side to completely dictate the tempo of the game, which would be ridiculous enough even if this wasn’t cup football.
And talking of a bodily shove, Collum allowed a blatant push on a Livingston player’s back to go unpunished in the lead up to the goal, and VAR didn’t reverse the decision, which I assure you is a shocker and thus a subject I will be returning to tomorrow.
I choose my pictures very carefully for these articles at times; that’s a reminder to Collum that he does, in fact, know what that thing beside the touchline is for, in case he excuses that decision later by saying he thought it only showed Sky Sports News.
According to the stats in front of me, the Ibrox club has had 70% of the ball, in the first half and ten corner kicks. I’m already good to call this one a home win. Fans of Livingston, you wasted your money buying tickets.
You had no chance.
It was not going to be your night, and you basically didn’t even need to show up to know it.
The odds were stacked so heavily against you.
Martindale told you that yesterday. He won’t try a leg against this lot.
Never going to happen in a game like this.
On top of that, the officials know that even if they lose their manager that Ibrox can’t afford not to win a major trophy especially with Celtic no longer in the competition and you were never getting anything out of that decision either.
Do I feel sympathy?
I wouldn’t go that far; this one’s sort of on you for not expecting better of your club than a raging mediocrity who doesn’t try a leg against one of the teams in the league, and who will uhm and aww about the decision but would have a heart attack right in front of us if it was suggested that the officials might be as dodgy as he used to be.
Scottish football gets what it deserves.
It was readily apparent just listening to Martindale yesterday that he had no intention of being the one to end The Mooch’s Ibrox tenure by actually trying to win this game, and officials are so consistent in favouring them in key decisions that any other outcome would have been manifestly absurd anyway.
They sometimes seem like they are refereed to different rules.
That is a textbook example of what VAR was brought in to assure did not happen in matches. All three of the officials, Collum himself and the two giggling SFA wide-boys who allowed that to stand should be hauled up in front of the beaks tomorrow and suspended. If this was England you would put your money on it.
Because that decision is a flat-out disgrace.
And for once it’s such an obvious one that every commentator, all across the media, who has been asked for a view on it says that they were all waiting for the foul to be given or for VAR to chop that off.
The question as to how officialdom would answer Ibrox’s complaints over The Goal That Wasn’t against us at the start of the month has been answered, and it’s been answered at the expense of every Livingston fan who bought a ticket for the game.
But they were set to be cheated anyway, by their own head coach if nobody else.
What a disgraceful, cowardly, first half performance from their team.
What a disgusting decision by the officials for the goal.
Nothing the rest of us didn’t expect though.
Better luck next time.