THERE are only two classes: first and none.
An individual is afforded the freedom of choice of which one they wish to embrace.
Some slip effortlessly into the superior category while sensibly weighing up matters before issuing a pronouncement. Others, alas, blindly race in and spew nonsense.
The chasm in status has once more been brutally exposed in Scottish football following events in the east end of Glasgow last weekend.
Accusations flew around with reckless abandonment as the visitors vented their rage at a decision by the referee to disallow a goal by one of their players against Celtic. The torrent of ill-advised comments brought a severe – if not entirely unexpected – backlash for the unfortunate match official.
The whistler, remember, was also backed by his VAR team following Alfredo Morelos’ push on Alistair Johnston.
YOU NEED HANDS…Carl Starfelt’s shot is pushed away by Ibrox defender Connor Goldson.
There was an almighty bluster from certain quarters that reached apoplectic levels. ‘How dare they chalk off a Rangers goal?’ That was the whining mantra.
Yes, we all recognise it was a tactic to veer focus away from the facts that had developed after 95 minutes of some good old thud and blunder in a Glasgow derby. The visitors still had seven Premiership games to play and, let’s face it, each match had just been rendered totally meaningless.
That is if they weren’t in the same category even before kick-off a week ago today.
Calls, right or wrong, occur in the beautiful game.
Deal with it. Acknowledge that football is rarely a perfected art. There are too many people involved chasing that sphere around the pitch to even start to delude yourself that no-one will make a mistake – including the possessor of the whistle.
To err is human, after all. Most of us possess the ability to accept that fact. Others, unfortunately, can’t quite cope with that understanding. And that emphasises a distressing and disturbing lack of class.
Connor Goldson used both hands to divert a ball from Carl Starfelt at Ibrox on January 2. Penalty-kick? Of course, it was. Unfortunately, the referee, po-faced John Beaton, thought otherwise and, remarkably, VAR, with Willie Collum sitting in the bunker in front of multi screens, calculated to agree there had been no clear and obvious error from his SFA colleague.
SHOVE OFF…Stephen Welsh is sent flying after a push in the back by Jonah Ayunga in the act of scoring St Mirren’s second goal in September. Referee Don Robertson appears to have a good view of the incident.
It was preposterous, but the Celtic hierarchy didn’t immediately fire off complaints to our ruling body later that day. Remember, too, the hosts were leading 2-1 at that stage – the 64th minute – and, ironically, had been put in the advantageous position following a spot-kick award that may well have been viewed as contentious.
Did Fashion Sakala thrust himself forward to make contact with Starfelt who had gone to ground, an inadvisable motion when the likes of the Zambian is around?
Ange Postecoglou was spot on when he reflected on the Goldson incident during the media conference yesterday.
“I thought we should have had a penalty at Ibrox, but it doesn’t really matter at the end of the day. You give your opinion and then you move on.”
The words underline the indisputable pedigree of the Celtic manager.
Did you hear anyone from the champions’ camp whine long and loud following the obvious push in the back of Stephen Welsh by Jonah Ayunga when he scored St Mirren’s second goal in the champions’ solitary domestic defeat this season?
MAKING A POINT…Joe Hart has a word with the referee’s assistant after the second goal in Paisley.
Celtic had every right to be upset in Paisley on the afternoon of September 18. It was the team’s first league loss following a praiseworthy sequence of 38 matches. Bizarre refereeing from Don Robertson and his assistants helped nudge the team towards the trapdoor.
That goal came shortly after the interval, the match official appeared to have a clear view of the incident and somehow contrived to miss the two-handed shove that propelled the Celtic defender through the air.
Even more alarmingly, TV pictures later proved conclusively the Saints forward had been offside. A double whammy that cost the Parkhead side big style on the day.
Were you aware of any official complaints from the east end of the city demanding answers as to why the goal was allowed to stand when there had been an obvious foul? Plus an explanation into why it wasn’t ruled out after being scored from an illegal position?
No, me, neither.
That, my friends, is class.