Celtic’s “Working Relationship” With The Green Brigade Is At An End.

Image for Celtic’s “Working Relationship” With The Green Brigade Is At An End.

As everyone knows, the latest Green Brigade communique was released last night, and Celtic responded shortly thereafter.

The fan group claims it’s being persecuted by those at the top of the club, including by the former CEO and now chairman.

But the truth is, if Celtic were intent on taking The Green Brigade out of the equation they could do so, and they could do so easily, and they could have done so before now and with a minimum of fuss.

Celtic’s response made it clear just how much they have tolerated.

The only thing that surprises me about their statement is that they’ve not already removed these guys from the ground permanently. What Celtic alleges crosses the line in so, so many ways. Breaking into the stadium? Threatening Celtic staff? Why is the club permitting these people to be around for even one minute longer?

Claims of persecution are easy to make, and there is a willing audience to hear that our board are the source of all evil in the universe.

But it’s time some people took the blinkers off. If these people are guilty of even half of what they are accused of they need to be dealt with, because we can’t allow an element like that in our support. It’s just that simple.

I share a lot of their political views.

I write my political views on this blog.

Agreeing or disagreeing with their political stance or their banners or on Palestine flags are issues of no consequence next to their general behaviour.

We’ve had it all from these guys and every time the club allows one thing to go unpunished their behaviour gets worse.

But for just a moment let’s discuss their political stance, their banners and the flags.

Their politics verges on extremism.

I am not surprised that Celtic wants no part of it.

They claim that Celtic has now restricted their ability to make banners.

Well of course they have. When you put up one in support of a “resistance” which is at that moment murdering civilians what else do they think will happen? That banner was an obscenity coming when it did.

There is a growing feeling inside Celtic that this whole Palestinian thing is being weaponised by these people so that they can now openly confront the board.

Much of their statement stretches credulity.

At least one part of it appears to be fundamentally dishonest, and it’s the claim that they were only informed of the away match ban on Friday; how come I was able to write about it on the Wednesday night?

And where did I get my information?

From two of their own members, who were apparently very well informed as to what Celtic’s thinking was and posted it online.

They claim that the ban on away tickets is motivated by a desire to limit their political expression, but that’s nonsense as I’ve said already.

Anyone who is aware of what’s gone on at certain games in the last couple of years knows that something like this was always possible and always on the cards. In trying to get tickets for away games, The Green Brigade was no longer even willing to provide names and details for those who were taking them … that’s just ridiculous and I am amazed that the club was willing to put up with that.

Motherwell, frankly, made it impossible not to act.

Do I think the Kilmarnock banner helped crystalise thinking on this?

Of course, I do.

But it was the events priort to the Lazio game that were really the last straw for a lot of people inside Celtic, the moment where folk in our director’s box and elsewhere said enough is enough.

Still, it should be obvious that a fan organisation which puts up a banner like that and which still hasn’t even apologised for the hurt that caused to many, many people in our support and inside the club itself, is out of control.

What happened at Motherwell and other places away from home and which led to this ban has damn all to do with politics.

Manhandling members of the Motherwell staff, smashing security gates and trying to force your way inside a stadium for which you don’t have tickets and then telling fans who do have seats for which they’ve paid good money that they aren’t sitting in them because you and your mates have commandeered the section for yourself isn’t political by any stretch of the imagination.

When a fan group is photographing the police and actually identifying some of them by name and putting their details online, when they break into their own ground and threaten members of their own club’s staff, that’s not political either.

Let’s call it what it really is; hooliganism.

Our club is perfectly entitled to restrict the tickets of hooligans, and even remove them from Celtic Park if that is what it’s going to take.

And we should all be speaking up in support of the club if that day ever comes, and I cannot but conclude that it’s on the way.

It doesn’t matter anymore that none us of wants to be here.

Here we are regardless, and it doesn’t even matter whether you believe the club’s version of this or that of The Green Brigade itself.

When the club is accusing a fan group of behaving this way and they are accusing the club of intimidating its members and persecuting other fans, whichever side you are on you can see the writing on the wall.

The relationship between The Green Brigade and the club is effectively at an end. There is no going back to the way things were.

There’s no trust, there’s no respect, there’s not even the tinniest semblance of goodwill any longer. It’s open hostility.

And that can only end one way.

There’s no fixing what’s been broken here and if you believe the club’s version of events – and I know that 95% of it is true and assume the other 5% is as well based on that – then you must know how this has to go.

And I suspect that the vast, vast majority of our fans will support that outcome.

Share this article


  • Charlie Kelly says:

    It is not Celtics board relationship with the
    GB that is near an end.The supporters are fed up with the board thinking they’re talking for us this Tory led board have no interest in helping the Palestinians at any time.more interested in share price and freebies connected with club Absolute disgrace helped Ukraine because suited there needs let’s have another collection for Palestine same as last one built schools, hospital and fed families Well Done GB

    • James Forrest says:

      When this ends in the inevitable ban, are you gonna turn your back on Celtic over it? Because that’s the choice a lot of people are going to have to make and for most folk it’ll be a simple one.

  • Mick Anthony says:

    Your comments are not balanced. You should not be criticising people for political expression while making your own. The truth of the matter is that the green brigade need to realise that they are Celtic supporters first and foremost and with that comes a responsibility to be reasonable. I agree with their support of the Palestinian cause and their fundraising, however I certainly don’t agree with all that they stand for. As a season ticket holder I have witnessed their bad behaviour and I fully support the board in dealing with this. Lines need to be drawn between the board and the gb. In my view the gb should follow their socialist principles and create a charter that they abide with, one that states there is no place for intimidation, lack of respect and failure to realise that are not the Celtic support, only a small but important part of it.

  • Auldheid says:

    Support in pursuit of Res12 which was about SFA reform backed by a barrow load of evidence availble at was non existent from GB even after the motivation was clearly set out in discussions with them.

    They had their own agenda and helping Celtic tackle years of proven cheating by Rangers was not part of it.

    Not one banner in support of SFA reform or the flawed LNS Commision was ever launched by the GB.

    The bloody Aberdeen support did what the GB should have done when it came to banners.

    A house divided cannot stand and the GB attitude is of itself divisive.

    There is more to Celtic than singing and dancing on a terrace or TIFOs. There is a core ethos based on love and there is little of that on display, hence the division.

    Brother Walfrids motivations were not to cause division but to create an environment in which atonement – at-one-ment could be acheived. Feed the belly and open the door to enable enrichment of the mind.

    How does the GB behaviour align with the spirit on which Celtic was founded?

  • Brian Fitzsimmons says:

    Super stuff. Your article is first class and in my opinion expresses the feelings of the silent majority of Celtic fans. At their best, the Green Brigade were a joy and on numerous occasions, helped carry the team over the line. At their worse they are nothing more than hooligans and bullies. The club cannot tolerate a fan group who are out of control.

  • Jinkyhenrik says:

    They create a good atmosphere at games and do a lot of good with food bank collections but some of the stuff that has gone on in the last couple of years has been shocking. Do you remember the “battle” with Rangers fans in the morning before a Glasgow derby. Our club prided itself in the 80s in not participating in football hooliganism. The GB need to sort out their members who engage in this crap. I’m also sick of them setting themselves up as the poppy police. I agree that the poppy has been hijacked in recent years by the right wing in this country. However, there ppl who wear it to remember those in their families who were killed in WW2 fighting fascism. That some ppl don’t wear a poppy at Celtic Park through fear of abuse from some sections of the support is shocking. I have great sympathy with the Palestinian people but the banner at the Kilmarnock game was sickening. To not have apologised for it is shocking. The board are trying to protect the interests of the club. If you want to support Palestinians attend a demo, make a donation (as many fans already have) but stop playing student politics at Celtic Park.

  • William Borthwick says:

    Well said.

    I’m sick of politics in football
    But the governing European body don’t help by politicising themselves with BLM and supporting Ukraine so what is the difference hear, but the green brigade are fast
    Becoming a slight on Celtic Football Club just as this enlarging group called Block Seven are at my team
    Hibernian FC, they are bringing politics into Scottish football and I personally am sick of it.

  • Magua says:

    I like belting out the rebs as much as the next Tim, but there’s a time and a place. With the absence of the hooligan brigade on Sunday, there was actually-gasp, horror-Celtic songs sung at Tynecastle. Will wonders never cease?

    Hail Hail.

  • Brian Anthony says:

    Agree with your words James 100%

  • Bobby says:

    You read like the 2faced hypocrites that sing songs of freedom for everyone but when presented with the opportunity for said freedom voted against it …..

    • James Forrest says:

      Well how stupid you’d look if you went back through the LITERAL DOZENS of posts I’ve written over the years confirming that I was a Yesser and I am a Yesser to this day.

      45percenter and damned proud of it, and I’ll vote the same way again.

  • Anthony Mcquade says:

    If they (Green Brigade ) are so sure they are right why do NONE of them put their name to any statement?
    Instead of hiding behind the group name .
    I suspect it is another case in our society of a few deciding for the many .
    Do they vote on these decisions ?

  • SSMPM says:

    Well stated James and welcomed your additional comment Auldheid. I’m not sure what went on 7th October could have been known in full prior to the Kilmarnock game ie stuff takes time to make banners, etc, and felt it must must have been prepared prior to that. I in my mind was prepared to accept a version of that however if all is basically true then they’ve been left unchecked it would seem for far too long and in an unapologetic manner. Now they’re acting like a law unto themselves. Clarity is always welcome as is validity.
    Why I wonder then have the board extended their stay into tonight’s game when the shit may well hit the pan and we get to suffer the consequences of it . The stewards and police will I hope weed out the worst of it prior to kick off.
    Good luck to the team tonight, we’re gonna need it. I only hope any good work is not undone by them and subsequent EUFA punishment. Imagine we do win tonight and a points deduction follows It’ll clearly have to be a case of kick ’em out for good. and never will they be forgiven. Tks again for the info. HH

  • Anton says:

    I have heard stories of them turning up at away games and removing fellow fans from their seats all too often. They seem to think they’re more
    “celtic daft” than the normal punter. That their views are irrelevant and they know better. They are acting like hooligans like you say. When they stick to supporting the club,not just the team, they do it well. Unfortunately they mo longer seem capable. The same goes for the pyro. Told million times it’s illegal but just won’t listen. Like you’ve said before when the law is being broken it ain’t the club that’s going to take the fall. No one man or fan group for that mater is bigger than the club. It was here long before the green brigade and earned its reputation long before the green brigade. They would do well to learn and learn fast.

  • Cm says:

    Enough is enough …fans do not want to be tarred with supporting one country against other country…there is death and people have lost everything 1 death is to much. Celtic is a football club..we can have our personal opinions…but this display can not be allowed its incendiary…does not belong in our club.ans if this is transferring fear onto the celtic fans then the board needs to step in and remove this hatred..its not support its Hatred.!

  • Clachnacuddin and the Hoops says:

    Such a shame that it’s come to this as they were good for the atmosphere…

    But the club getting into repeatitive trouble with UEFA because of them is a definite no no –

    Just a shame what ego does to human beings at times…

    But while their caper of getting Celtic fined is to be condemned their fundraising has to be praised and commended for sure !

  • Anthony Macpherson says:

    Excellent article they should have been banned years ago .. total embarrassment

  • Chris says:

    Agree with every word.

  • Sean Devlin says:

    I have never had time for the Green Brigade. I have supported Celtic for 60 years and I find the Green Brigade and the way they behave at the games completely unacceptable. The club is a FOOTBALL club, no more, no less and that is all that matters. If they want to express views which have nothing to do with football they should take them elsewhere. Is is time Celtic got rid of them and gave the game back to FOOTBALL supporters.

  • Robbie says:


    First time commenter, but I wanted to let you know how much I’ve enjoyed your writing over the years! I had the opportunity to tour Celtic Park and visit Glasgow for the first time this summer, and I absolutely loved the city and how class Celtic was throughout my tour of Parkhead.

    My ties to Celtic Football Club run pretty deep. My family came to America after living in the Gorbals during the famine, and before that they lived in Randalstown, County Antrim. While I’m proud of my Irish-Scottish background, I share that with a Jewish background.

    I’ve studied what is happening in Israel/Palestine pretty extensively, and it’s a very sensitive subject. At times it feels like some in the Green Brigade, or Celtic supporters perhaps lack some of the nuance of conversation, and it does make me feel a bit uncomfortable at times. Certainly today, I would be uncomfortable watching the Atletico match at Parkhead.

    While I love Celtic, some of what’s come out of all of this has given me pause. Love to hear more of your thoughts and of course others who support this blog. Thank you!

  • John L says:

    What happened to the day when supporters used to be supporters? . They have been given more than an inch, and by God they have run with it, it’s about time the Club took some action. Spoilt Kids come to mind. Ps , just took in the game and playing like that, no one can live with us in our league.

  • J Douglas says:

    I think the behaviour of the green brigade is appalling and should be dealt with rigorously. Celtic are a great football club and politics should never be brought into a football game. It is so unfortunate that the decent fans have to put up with this behaviour. Incidentally I am not a celtic fan
    but I enjoy watching the games they play.

Comments are closed.