GLF 2: Curse of the Old Firm

The first of many GLF stories about the Old Firm

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Well chums. What annoys you most about Scottish Football? Yes, that's right - the old firm. Those. loveable, gruesome twosome-doncha' just love 'em? One of the main reasons for starting this fanzine was that we were sick and tired of reading non- stop of these two famous Glasgow clubs, when all around us, VERY interesting and entertaining things are happening in the world of soccer. The problem is that the scum in the media have been conditioned all their lives to force these 2 clubs into the limelight at ALL costs. Just look at the inane and irrational reporting that is going on now.

Open a tabloid, and you'll probably find some stupid old firm related story on page seven about some new crisps or a sad tale of some 'fan'(I use the term loosely) who is a season ticket holder, lives in Aberdeen and travels to EVERY game, yet he is denied a ticket for some match due to the 'great demand' for tickets. WHO CARES? Why don't these cretins support their local teams, and put some pride back into a true community - spirited football club, instead of subscribing to a cancerous,hate-filled ghetto situation? I'll tell you why. It's because of countless years of media saturation. It really is a catch 22 situation.

Take the town of Motherwell, and it's traditional 'catchment' area ( ie: Wishaw, Carluke, Shotts, Belshill, Lanark etc etc). The following fact is absurd, but TRUE. If you support Motherwell FC, you're local team, then you are VERY MUCH in the minority. When I say about 95% of 'football' fans follow the mould-firm, you'll see what I mean. Anyone who lives outside Scotland will no doubt find that statistic a bit strange, to say the least. But do we think it's stupid or do anything about it? NO!- because we are all conditioned by the media to think likewise, and run with the pack.

How do you feel when you read the Daily Rancid? Take the 'sports hotline' column on a Monday for instance- 90% old-firm guaranteed. That is CRAP! But the heartbreaking thing about it is that these people who religiously (ha ha!) follow these clubs, all seem (or a very high proportion do) to cone from Bellshill, Dunfermline, Dundee, Airdrie, Paisley, Berwick, Falkirk etc. WHAT A SLAP IN THE FACE TO THEIR LOCAL CLUBS! I cannot understand how someone from, say Motherwell, can follow the OF, and really hope that they thrash Motberwell every time they play. Has sense of belonging finally vanished from football? What kind of average gates would clubs play to if this voodoo-like pull of the 0.F. was not in existence? Motherwell, Falkirk, St Mirren etc would surely be playing to around 15000 home fans. Look at Dunfermline's set-up. They have a great community-based club who get good gates, but even they lose out to the 'curse' of the big 2.

Yes, we're talking ideal world, and ideal politics here, folks. The saddest thing about it is that nothing I can write, or you can do that will ever change it. lt will always be this way. The masses must be catered for. Newspapers must be sold. Motherwell's crowds will never take a dramatic leap (although we've been doing not bad this season. Not a lot more cash will come thru' the turnstiles, and any players with promise and/or ambition will be sold - probably to, that's right you've guessed it, the old-firm! I've always supported Celt/gers- even as a boy).

Thus the 'Well always struggle in the shadow of the terrible twins. Yes, punters, We hate the old firm- you may say it's envy, but it's not-it's a bit more serious and deep rooted than that. Scottish football is in an unbealthy,top heavy situation which IS a bit predictable as we can never get any respite from the O.F. Get out your wee red book, and look back on previous league champions. It's embarrassing isn't it? Even itf you are an O.F. fan you must agree on that point. I won't even quote you the statistics 'cos it's so silly. Why do we all sit here an take it? (answers on a postcard please)

Anyway, enough of our views- it looks as if the European Sooper-Dooper league beckons. We'll maybe get another 2 or 3 seasons with the present set- up, and that'll be it. I must admit, it'd be quite good if they pissed off somewhere else- they would find some real competition in a realistic market environment, and have to struggle for mid-table obscurity, or even fend off relegation. That would really have the punters flocking to the turnstiles! (Plus, we'd all get the chance of a good gloat of course!)

As I said before, nothing we can do will change ANYTHING. But if even ONE more person decides to follow Motherwell(or Airdrie, St Mirren etc..) OR takes their kids along to these games, as an alternative to the O.F., I'll be more than happy (to say the least!)

MR ED *Lookout for our 'we hate the old-firm' campaign in this issue, punters!*

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