SOMETHING like 500 posts ago, I opined that the Fall and Rise of The Rangers FC would be a soap opera which would run and run, and the people who would benefit most from its lengthy run would be those solicitors lucky enough to have their snouts in the trough. I draw a picture of children, then in kindergarten, whose education at one or other of Scotland's top public schools would be paid-for from the proceeds of Pater trying to sort-out the Rangers mess.
Some say: "Never go back," but, apparently Derek McInnes is thinking of doing just that
Nothing in the intervening period has caused me to change that original 2012 opinion, and, the signs this week are, the run will be on-going. In a typical Rangers manoeuvre, one we have seen over the years with various player targets, Rangers seem determined to so upset Derek McInnes and his relationship with current employers Aberdeen, in the hope he resigns and is then free to join “his boyhood heroes.”
Of course, if that happens, the Dons will most-likely seek the compensation, believed to be in the region of £1 million, they feel they are due from losing their manager – and m'learned friends will cash-in.
The churnalists and stenographers of the Lap Top Loyal and its associated lodges are happy to stir the pot on this one – just think of all those “Life and Times of Derek McInnes” and “McInnes – the pathway to his destiny” features they have ready to roll.
Mind you, there are a couple of potential impediments to the move, not least the belief, McInnes will want to bring right-hand man Tony Docherty with him. There is no easy way to put this, Mr Docherty is, apparently, of the Romanist faith, and, as such, is unacceptable to a section of Ra Peepul. Yes, they would, reluctantly and grudgingly tolerate a Roman Catholic manager such as Paul Le Guen, or poor old Pedro, but, they were foreign Roman Catholics, from Roman Catholic countries. Docherty is, as several Rangers-leaning keyboard warriors have been only too keen to stress - “Taig”, or “A Tarrier”. No nearly 20-years on from signing Mo Johnson, some of Ra Peepul will still not tolerate this.
You ought to pity them, but, what does this say about 21st century Scotland, and Scottish football. Using that type of thinking, Messrs Messi and Christiano Ronaldo, had they been born in Scotland, would not have been acceptable to some/many of Ra Peepul. (Of course, Messi would have been discarded with a condescending: “Sorry son, but you're too wee,” long before he was ever signed).
Tommy Donnelly (back extreme left) - Simon's Dad, with Tommy Burley - Craig's Dad, (fourth from left, back row), in this Cumnock Academy team, was told he had joined the wrong team when he signed for Rangers
Back in the early 1960s, Tommy Donnelly, Simon's Dad, signed for Rangers from Cumnock Academy. He signed in manager Scot Symon's office, and then Rangers' captain Bobby Shearer was summoned to take Tommy down to the dressing room to meet the rest of the squad. On being introduced to: “Tommy Donnelly”, Shearer told the new boy - “With that name, you're at the wrong club.” Nearly 60 years on, that attitude is still hanging like a bad smell around Rangers – why?
Maybe, instead of trying to prise Derek McInnes from Pittodrie to Ibrox, the churnalists and stenographers should be using their crowbars to demolish the latent sectarianism and bigotry from around Rangers, and Celtic – for the good of Scottish football.
Mind you, from his apparent eagerness to be installed as Rangers' new boss, I have to question McInnes's sanity. Here is a club, without a credit line at a bank, and making regular losses, owning a stadium which, by their Chairman's own admission, requires considerable money spent on upgrading.
That same Chairman, is currently engaged in a costly and long-running legal dispute with the Take-Over panel. He is tainted by a South African judge's description of him as: “A glib and shameless liar”, and his fellow directors are becoming a wee-bit concerned at having to repeatedly make loans to the club, while the Chairman makes promises, which he fails to follow through on.
I would say, if McInnes does jump ship from Aberdeen to Glasgow, it will in time be seen as a classic case of hope over experience.
HOW minging was that Celtic game on Tuesday night? A shockingly-bad display from the Hoops, who simply never got started. Indeed, had, as they should have, Anderlecht scored with that early chance which Craig Gordon saved, well, it could have all been a lot worse for the home team.
Craig Gordon - his early save was probably crucial on Tuesday night
But, they are now through to the last 32 of the Europa League, which, given the current low level of the domestic game in Scotland, is probably as good as it will get for our Champions. But, Celtic are unseeded in Monday's draw, and might well find themselves with a “draw from Hell” against a bigger, better-funded, better-coached team of better players. They will have to improve greatly from the abject display they put on against a not-very-good Belgian side.
I decided to watch the Liverpool game last night, but, bailed-out at half-time, by which time, with the Reds 3-0 up, it was already game over. Just one thing, what does Andrew Robertson have to do to get a regular start in that team? On his Scotland form he is, for me, better than anything else they have at full-back.