25 Apr 2009

Ma Dull Day at Hampden

Dissappointing to say the least - a goal down in 70 secomds and beaten three nil, going on five. Enough said.

Well almost enough. I could not but contrast the lacklustre athmosphere in a third empty Hampden compared with Wembley last weekend.

Was it just that my team lost this time? I think not - even Rangers fans, who I sat amongst, seemed bored, as interested in the half time pies than the match. And they only got aggitated when Pedro Mendes was victim of a clumsy tackle and had to be streachered off. The extent of The Saints challenge.

Driving back from this non event I concluded an Old Firm move to the Premiership, in the news once more this week, could not come soon enough. Beacuse the radio post match chat told listeners that was the 21st semi- final in a row Rangers had won. So, whilst some rightly complain at the "predicatabilty" of the Premiership, it ain't remotely as predictable as this. And that's only the "unpredictable" Cups. The Scottish Premier League Champions? Rangers or Celtic this year, and next, and next, and next, and next........

And whislt the Old Firm -take your pick - are inevitable Champions, they aint even good - unlike Jock Stein's nine in a row Celtic team of the 60 and 70s, who won the equivilant of the Champions League in 1967, and therafter cut it with the very besy of them - Inter, Ajax, Bayern. all comers for over a decade, Or even the Souness-Smith Rangers of the 80s and 90s, one that poavched a good few stars from Everton and other top English sides - even tricky Trev and the then England first choice centre back, Terry Butcher. Gazza before he became a circus act. And not a bad side - only narrowly denied a Champions League final place by the subsequently proven corrupt Marseilles.

But the Rangers team that comfortably saw off the Saint today? - not a single "star" amongst them , not one who would be guaranteed a start in even a bottom six Premiership side, or most of the Championship ones. Honest, decent, pros but "jobbers" - and every Rangers fan in that stadium knew it.

But Rangers and Celtic are great clubs, have massive support, and are global "brands" that still rival the Man U's and Real Madrids. But for how much longer in the set up they now find thmesleves? They are now drawing massively on historical pedigree, not footballing reality.

And next time, I'd like to go to a cup semi-final where my team has a higher than 21 to 1 chance of progressing. So win win I reckon, from whatver Scottish perspective you see it. And the Premiership, fab though it is, would benefit too from Rangers and Celtic being in it - in time, at the very least a big 6 would emerge, and with this some genuine world class players based in Scotland for us all and the world to see. Some Baxters, Johnstones or Laws would be magic - but Ashavins, Cahills or Yakubus not bad either .

And with them, a jammed packed Hampden with its roar back. Not not just for Celtic v Arsenal. The Saints' gtreatest ever triumph came atHampden in 1959, when we beat Aberdeen 3-1 in the Scottish Cup Final. The crowd - over 100,00. You could apparently hear it at Paisley Cross when the thrid goal went in!


Albert Sunday, April 26, 2009  

You had bad luck. Maybe another year. And Everton also lose today so...

I agree that Celtic and Rangers are not what they used to be.

Alan Smart Sunday, April 26, 2009  


We were rubblsh. On another day it maye would hsve been closer, wed have put up a btter showing - but the Old firm near always win out in these semis or Finlas - the odd league win on a bad day for them is near all we can hope for.

And I am glad you posted. It got me thinking beyond our shored. I thought "where would Barca be in a Catalonia only League?"

The Saints would probably beat you!

naldo Monday, April 27, 2009  

Fitba in Scotland would be much more competitive without the Old Firm (GTF!).

But i fear that the only tv money would come from BBC Alba and teams like my own beloved Hearts would have to drastically reduce wages if all they had to go on was money raised at the gate and through merchandise sales.

So many of the better players at our clubs would move elsewhere to chase the poppy and the quality of our sides would be even worse than it is now.

Much as they piss me off, i don't think England needs (or really wants) them and Scotland does (need not want) so we're gonna be stuck with those two cheeks of the horrible plukey erse that is the Old Firm for a long time to come.

It all went tits up when Murdoch's Sky got involved. I blame Roops.

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