The Media Must Behave Responsibly In Promoting Brown’s Management Game At Ibrox.

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Last week, the media went out of its way to promote the possibility that Neil Lennon’s son might end up coming up against the Ibrox club.

This did not surprise a single one of us, and in particular when it came to The Record. That was, after all, the paper which once posited the question as to whether the taxman or our former manager was the person their fans hated most.

That they thought this was something suitable to joke about when Lennon had received death threats from those same fans is telling about how despicable they are.

The weekend game went exactly as many of us had feared. Lennon Junior was avalanched in bile. The media has been dead silent on it, even as FIFA rages against racism and bigotry abroad.

The gutless wonders of the Scottish media know this simply pushes the problem onto the shoulders of the next poor guy who has to endure it … and cometh the hour, cometh the man. Ayr United drew them in the cup and in a twist no fiction writer would have dared pen the lower league club has just appointed Scott Brown their manager.

Even as the discussions about that were ongoing, Ewan Murray appeared on the Graham Speirs podcast with Stephen McGowan to discuss, amongst other things, Ibrox’s pursuit of Lawrence Shankland, Derek Adams ludicrous comments and Celtic’s January transfer business. Somewhere in there, Ayr United were discussed as was the news that Brown was in the running.

That gave Ewan Murray his inroad to launch a highly personal attack on our former captain, which he attempted to legitimise through promoting the idea that even neutrals dislike him.

Murray, in fact, is just a bile-soaked Hearts fan who frequently rants against Celtic. When he was pressed on whether it was simply because Brown had played for Hibs, he made the astonishing claim that he’d actually forgotten all about that … and you know what? That’s not hard to believe. Hating Brown just because he wore our green shirt is reason enough for some.

You hardly need to think too deeply about this subject to recognise that there are some in the media who will hype Brown’s return to Ibrox as an encounter not between two clubs but between Brown and the people who hate him and who he hates right back. Whether that’s even true or not will not matter. There are some in the press corps who will market this match on the basis of the most awful emotions, and in doing so paint a target on his back.

Yet Brown is not going there as an ambassador for Celtic.

He’s going there as the manager of Ayr United, he’s going there as a guy who wants to better himself in his career. For him this is just another game, albeit an important one because it is a cup tie.

It would be a gross insult to him and to his club to turn this into a freak show, but that’s what some in the press will do.

But they will also make it a dangerous environment for Brown to work in, and you don’t need to be a genius to recognise that fact.

This is the club which told Chris Sutton it could not guarantee his safety, at the stadium our own board refuses to accept match tickets for because of the risks to our supporters. Brown will be on that touchline essentially alone, and the narrative is already taking shape that anything that happens he will have in some way brought on himself.

This is not a situation that the media should be pouring petrol on. That some will undoubtedly do so anyway is both depressing and shameful.

Is it too much to ask that they show a modicum of common sense, and to act responsibly? Is it crazy to believe that even in the febrile atmosphere in which lunatic writers and broadcasters attempt to turn the dropping of a single point into a moment of crisis at Celtic that this time, just for once, they don’t sensationalise or dramatize but adopt a measured stance?

Many of them will. Many of them, no matter what their sporting loyalties are, recognise that they must watch what they say less they inflame the situation.

Others will charge straight in there just for a few extra readers or to stir a controversy with their own name at the centre of it.

This is inevitable because some of them just cannot help themselves and Brown has haters in the press box who would love to see him have as uncomfortable an afternoon as possible.

But this time, this one time, I hope they act at least semi-sensibly.

Nothing is going to stop the Peepul making it as horrible a day as possible, but you know what the media is like; there are almost certainly going to be articles regurgitating every single time Brown wound them up or made a comment which their fans didn’t like, there will be all sorts of references to famous moments in notorious games … all of it to heat things up.

Some of them might even attempt to dress it up as a compliment; “Brown is steady under pressure” kind of stuff. But who needs a compliment like that? Who would want that who could just go to his work that day and concentrate on the job at hand?

It surely cannot be too much to ask.

That they think before they publish some inflammatory piece?

That they don’t hype this as anything other than two teams going head-to-head for a place in the next round? Hell, there’s even a way to make it all about the romance of the cup and about a young manager in only his second job with his shot at glory.

We know what depths this media is capable of plumbing.

We know how low they can go.

Wouldn’t it be great if just this once they aimed high, and did something that made you praise their sense of decency and accountability, rather than marvelling at their recklessness?

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  • Mick says:

    The press will avidly stoke this fire, to then sit back to see what unfolds. I’d wager every penny I’m ever likely to posess on that. Every ‘newspaper’ will build it up so much that it’ll be like a firework explosion when he takes to the dugout, memories of Tynecastle are flooding back, I hope that’s not the way it pans out.
    We All know how petty that lot are and the press are no better.

  • Captain Swing says:

    Broony can deflect attention away from himself pretty easily – he can select player/coach Aiden McGeady to start the match. The Orcs will soon forget Broony is even there…..

  • Jim says:

    Aye n pigs might fly , they’ll say and do anything to sell papers, whip up people into a frenzy then deny or leg it if this blows up in their faces , should be charged with incitement to riot

  • Frank Connelly says:

    best of luck with that James

  • Frank Connelly says:

    on a separate point Joe Lewis in the news tonight. Another crook was he not gonna be a Sevco saviour at at one time in the past

  • Mr magoo says:

    Good luck to broonie ….. I’ll happily stand by his side at ibrox if he needs hawners and someone to catch the bottles that are sure to come his way

  • Kevan McKeown says:

    Don’t make me laugh. That’s twice in 5 days we’ve heard pure bile from their support. Directed at a youngster at the weekend and again tonight, loud and clear, the sectarian songbook was pulled out, wi everythin from Catholics tae the pope gettin the treatment. Whit will we hear from the media, absolutely fk all, nothin. These hypocritical media bastards are every bit as guilty in their silence, as the hate inspired morons singin these songs. They’re a disgrace.

  • harold shand says:

    They won’t , the media will go to town on it , with every headline the week leading up to the game including words like ..

    War , Hate , Spite , Cauldron , Battle Fever , Arch Enemy , Fever Pitch , Sneering , Villain

    Just like they do every game with Celtic v them

    Then they sit back and scream tut tut , naughty naughty if things boil over

    • Kevan McKeown says:

      @ HS. They won’t what ? If you see one article that mentions their sectarian singin, ye can let us all know. Won’t happen. Aye they’ll pump that mob up rotten and try tae stir the shite up, as if it needed it, in the lead up tae the derby games, tho when it comes tae their religious bile, that’s a real example of whit hypocritical bastards they are. Not a fkn word about it, ever.

  • Paddy says:

    Essentially the MSM play on the Ibrox Club’s minority supporters, a salient decent lot that take no pleasure from their neo Nazi cheerleaders. Instrumental.

  • Clachnacuddin and the Hoops says:

    “Did something that made you praise their sense of DECENCY” ??????

    Bloody Hell – Me and You could live for the next 1,000 years James and I would never read you reporting on one single tiny iota of decency from these utter cretins in The Scottish Football Media…

    As it turns out I don’t think we will be shouting ‘Broooooooooonny got it Rooooooooounnn ye’ to the Sevco Huns and therefore he should be safe(ish) apart from the usual verbal pish –

    But it won’t be for the want of trying for a different outcome from the Crayon Scribblers of evil that pollute the newsrooms within The Scottish Football Media !

  • SSMPM says:

    Why would you want something so insincere as that to happen? Particularly as you know it’s not going to. Hun fans and press being civil. That’s gonna make Brown paranoid as hell and worry about what’s about to happen

  • David Newton says:

    Oor Broonie is the most decorated player in the SPL history, naturally the mob the other side of the city despise him, he’s accomplished more in 12 years than the entire Rangers International 2012 have collectively, and he’s paid more tax.
    Daily Rekkurd is a scandal, but they have allegiance to protect their “sporting interests” so we’ll just pretend they’re not biased.

    If you see anyone buying or reading it just take them immediately to the vets and have them pit down.
    I’m actually quite surprised that they’ve had time for this nonsense when they should have been working with the new entity getting all rules and regulations to suit their narrative. They have their penalty entitlement, which should be all their collective focus.

    Boycott the DR, of you’ve not done so yet then I despair.

  • Bob (original) says:

    Broony will get outrageous abuse – and the SMSM will obediently look the other way.

    Maybe Broony could pre-empt the hate,

    by turning up at ibrox with all his winners medals

    hanging around his neck?

    It won’t silence them, but it would certainly get the bears frothing at the mouth

    in spasms of absolute rage! 🙂

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