Neil Lennon speaks out for the heart of Celtic


I spoke to Phil Mac Giolla Bhain, a man who wears his Republican heritage on his sleeve, about the hostile reaction to his comments on modernising the Celtic songbook a few months back.  Phil found himself to be an easy target for conspiracy theorists who turned on him for issuing a request to an end of political chanting.  I’m sure Neil Lennon will not find anything like the same reaction to his comments in the Sun today, but it remains to be seen if anyone listens.

Neil said, “It’s important that we put a general message out that these chants have no place around our club. To be honest, we are better than that as a club and we always have been, we just don’t need it.

“We are and always have been a club open to all and we do not have issues around sectarianism. We have our own values and traditions but they do not include these chants. We don’t want them at matches and they must stop.”

This is not the first time Neil has given the same message this year.  After his earlier comments I actually heard, “Who is Neil Lennon to tell me what I can and can’t sing?  I’ve been going to Celtic Park a lot longer than he has.”

We are in a classic social paradox.  The reputational damage of political singing is not felt by those who sing, and the risk of personal consequences arising for any individual singer is probably around 1%.  And let’s be honest here, for all the supportive flags, banners and “I’m Neil Lennon” proclamations, is Neil respected enough to be listened to, or has he become a modern Che Guevara-poster boy?

Whatever you think of Neil, or his rights to say what you can or cannot sing, he has the best interests of our club in mind whenever he speaks on this subject.

Click Here for Comments >

About Author

  1. Pages:
  2. 1
  3. 2
  4. 3
  5. 4
  6. 5
  7. 6
  8. 7
  9. 8
  10. 9
  11. ...
  12. 27

  1. Imatim and so is Neil Lennon on

    Moonbeams WD. \o/ Supporting Neil Lennon 100%. C’mon the hoops. says:


    17 November, 2011 at 13:49





    250 Orange lodges in England.



    182 Orange lodges in Scotland.



    England’s Population Approx. 51M


    Scotland Population approx 5.2M



    For every 204,000 approx people of living in England there is an Orange Lodge.



    For every 28,570 approx people living in Scotland there is an orange lodge.






    MWD that’s the best I can do.





    South Of Tunis says:


    17 November, 2011 at 14:00


    imatim @13 42 ———–



    Less than 1 % of the Scottish population are members of the Orange Order..






    2010 Never Again



    Taking the above posts to be accurate (which I have no doubt they are)



    There are 56 cities/towns in Scotland with a population of over 15,000 people






    There’s approx 5,222,100 people living in Scotland @ 1% of population = 52,221 OO members



    ….”………”………..”………..”……..”…..”…….”……@ 5,222,100 divided by 28,570 = 182.78 OO lodges



    If I’m not mistaken the tax payer pays in excess of £20,000,000 per annum for the policing of these OO marches of hate and bigotry…………£20,000,000+ per year (to appease a less than a 1% proportional membership)



    Rangers are being sued by HMRC for non payment of taxes + penalties for around £55,000,000



    Who exactly is it that is a financial drain and a cultural embarrassment to Scotland?



    Scottish society is haemorrhaging countless £millions to sustain these people and their self serving indulgences.



    Why can they not pay their fair share? Why?



    The focus needs to be shifted to who exactly it is that is sucking Scotland dry in more ways than one and where the real problems lie.

  2. Once more, the problem with the Guardian piece is the subbing. Ewan Murray is wrong to draw a parallel with the Billy Boys at the end, but at least he says the IRA chants are not sectarian or illegal.



    Whoever composed the standfirst and the photo caption either needs more time to read the articles they are being given to work on or to be given other work more suited to their abilities.

  3. Does any of Multi Lingual supports look at other football forums ? say Barca, Milan, Munich ?



    Is there a midweek lull if there is no midweek game ? What is the topics for discussion ?




  4. Thomthetim



    Wouldn’t it. And would we be talking about anything else if we got to see a proper Celtic on the park?



    South Of Tunis.



    That’s funny for me… Although sufficiently embarrassing that I’m retiring for the day.






    I take on what you say and thanks for mostly just making a point. I’d never want for anything more or less in discussion. We’re not persuading each other any time soon I’d guess.

  5. The No.13 Shorts on

    I can completely understand, and agree, that the contemporary nature of the Provisional IRA makes it possible that real offense could be caused by the glorification of this organisations actions, perhaps even to those who recently lost loved ones during recent years. Love ones who might still be alive today were it not for their death directly as a result of Provisional IRA actions.



    It has taken till my 38th year, fatherhood , and grudgingly, this frustrating debate, to reach such a conclusion and I am thankful for that.



    It is, after all, usually no fault of the bereaved, no matter the circumstance of the death of a loved one, be they soldier, freedom fighter, terrorist, innocent woman, or child.



    Any fair minded and reasonable person would accept the above statement.



    Now try exchanging the above phrase “Provisional IRA” for “British Army” and try to understand the real offense and anger felt by this member of the Irish community in Scotland to recent PLC statements and very public donations to the Poppy appeal (for example).



    I’ve always felt a second class citizen in this country, but I never ever thought this feeling would finally be cemented by the policies of Celtic Football Club.



    A very sad day.

  6. whitedoghunch says:



    17 November, 2011 at 14:50



    “electricity-generating pavement slabs”



    Would look great outside Celtic Park! Don’t think they would be as popular around Ibrox unless they change the colour :)

  7. Neil canamalar Lennon hunskelper extrordinaire on

    South ofTunis,


    Tax avoision is not illegal no money is lost to avoision.


    and no I have not evaded any tax as far as I’m aware, I am proud of a lot of the things that my tax money is spent on and have no reason to want that to be harmed.


    A wee retort.


    Are you South of Tunis for tax reasons per chance ?, are you trying to salve your concience by trying the argument that everyone does it and thats the game ?


    We are not all greedy money grabbers.


    If everyone paid their dues the country would have plenty of money, british solidiers woul be fully equiped and those injured in active combat would not need to depend on charity.

  8. Another PR disaster from Celtic FC



    Neil really should concentrate on the football, 74 players on professional contracts at Celtic football club, fix the 11 Neil



    Neil when he is getting hammered by the rags runs to that corner of the stadium to thank them for their support



    Today Neil gives the rags a gift to hammer the corner of the stadium he has thanked previously, a PR shambles

  9. wdh



    There are shopping complexes all over the world who use this technoligy, when delivery lorries drive over ramps the hydrolic energy is converted into leccy, seriously expensive to install, but no more leccy bills.

  10. Not posted in ages been very busy at work.However wanted to post this.



    All the furore of the so called IRA songs at the Rennes game seems very strangely orchestrated to me,I was at the game as usual and I clearly remember the GB singing the words ‘ooh Aah Samaras’ rather than the words that get us into trouble during the Celtic Symphony.I distinctly remember discussing it at the time with my mate because we were both surprised and actually credited the GB for using common sense and playing the game.Does anyone else remember this and could it be that our social conscience Eddie actually mis heard?



    I am no proponent of IRA songs at the games,my mate is actively hostile to them,and I would be honest if I heard it but at this game in particular I thought that evidence of IRA chants was at an all time low.



    Anyway back to lurking and hoping we batter the Inverness lot on Sat.



    One other quick thing,I have seen a couple of Southamptons performances and obviously can only comment on matches I have seen, in those matches I discovered Hooiveld is definitely not the answer.







  11. coorslad is Neil Lennon on

    Lennon should know by now,if you lay down with dogs you’ll pick up fleas..The Sun of all papers,wonder who thought this would be a good idea..Just give them a big stick to beat you all the way to the highlands..

  12. The huns met the police to be told that the Sash, Derry’s Walls, Build my Gallows were fine, but TFS and The Billy boys was out.


    The Police refused to meet Celtic fans. These are the facts. And the facts are astonishing.


    The Celtic fans sing one line of one song ‘OOh ahh up the RA’ in a song about a Celtic fan being chased round various badlands by the devil FFS. and that is enough for Celtic fans in general and the Green Brigade in particular to get the full treatment from every angle.


    Lawwell asks to stop singing aboout the ‘Provisional IRA’ McBride attributes this to the Green Brigade to suit his own agenda.


    The Green Brigade haven’t, don’t and will not sing about the ‘Provisional IRA’ Any one who follows irish politics would know why. It is divisive. Again these are facts.




    But dont let any facts get in the way of on orchestrated campaign to suit the bigots who hate Celtic fans purely for their existence.

  13. I’m disappointed to see some people (not necessarily on here but on other celtic sites I’m on, for my sins ;) ) view NL’s statement as some sort of “betrayal”; that he is giving the media more ammunition and that he is just a board ‘stooge’.



    by all means I am against the bill and the way it is seemingly already being enforced before its even become law; I am against the sneaky tactics of the police for reporting the club to UEFA, something they have never done before, for something which isn’t actually illegal. I am against the orchestrated smear campaign being waged against the club by a cop with more than questionable motives.



    But do people honestly think the club are tacitly supporting such bad PR? Celtic and Neil Lennon have repeatedly asked for IRA references to stop at games for months, years; is that so hard to understand?



    Some people just assume that because NL is a Catholic Nothern Irishman that he must be a “provo” (like me and you he’s a provo too, one chant I would ban today); newsflash, he’s not. Northern Ireland is trying to get over the old divisions though of course there’s still much work to be done there. I’m disgusted that anyone can “lose respect” for him for “towing the party line”; shock horror, hasn’t it occurred to people that maybe, just maybe, these are his own opinions as well? Can NL not think for himself?



    This isn’t about whether the songs are legal or not; they are perfectly legal; but the simple fact is the club itself has repeatedly said it does not want chants about the IRA at games, its perfectly simple. Drop, or at very least simply replace any references to the IRA in the Celtic Symphony or suchlike; is that asking too much?



    Let me put a question out there; if UEFA punish the club for IRA chanting, will those who continue doing it stop then? Or are three easily replaced letters more important than the clubs reputation at home and abroad?

  14. Neil canamalar Lennon hunskelper extrordinaire on



    you couldnt make it up.


    and it shames up to see howmany on here are willing to jump on the hun bandwagon.



  15. Marrakesh Express on

    Awe_Naw_No_Annoni_Oan_Anaw_Noo says:


    17 November, 2011 at 13:54



    I totally agree with everything you just said.



    There have been a multitude of posts on this topic over the last week, offering deeply thought opinions that come from different angles and perspectives.


    Having spent hours reading many excellent pieces, it is absolutely clear to me that EVERY member of the Celtic family has been affected by this smear campaign. A shot has been fired to the heart of our club by certain bodies who see fit to discriminate against us. We know who they are. Its been going on surrepticiously for 100 years, sometimes leading to major headlines such as the Tricolour affair of 1952 and more recently the Jim Farry episode and Dougiegate. Its always CFC who have to stand and fight for justice, but this time the motives behind the latest slur on on the club are so obvious.



    Our one and only rival, the darlings of the establishment, are at the lowest ebb in their history and its not just because they are on the brink of administration. Without going back to the likes of Barcelona 72, we only have to look at the very recent history of this club to see where their foundations are rotting. I’ll mention the three main areas.



    1. The illegal bankrolling by SDM in a vain attempt to win the big cup.


    2. The subsequent critical financial mess he has left the club in.


    3. The Uefa fan bans.



    Each of these carries enough stigma and bad publicity to fill a book. The club, its support, the establishment and the media also feel the pain and embarrassment, not to mention the thought of whats to come if the worst case senario happens.



    What is now surely obvious to everyone is that as a futile last resort, they have tried to tie the rope round our ankles and drag us down with them. Some psychology experts will tell you that it is a human trait to feel less pain if your enemy also feels some with you.



    We know the history of the two clubs (and support) and how different they are. We should feel comfortable with the fact that we have won 42 leagues in Scotland because its been against the odds. Our reputation worldwide is not only light years ahead of theirs, it is one of the highest in the football world. AND THEY KNOW IT.



    There has never been a time for CFC to come out with the strongest appropriate statement on behalf of the entire Celtic family. I would prefer such an address to come from a man of stature like Jock Stein, Robert Kelly or Fergus McCann. If one does come, as it surely will, Peter Lawwell better get it right. I’m not a fan of Peter but he has to deliver this time. Which makes me wonder why one of the richest men in Europe, Dermot Desmond, doesnt take the stand at a time when his club are under attack for little or no reason, by parties who a determined to sully our name. All to make it look less bad for them.



    Stand tall and proud, and dont be cowed by this latest anti-Celtic operation.




  16. Canamalar ————-



    No —–being South of Tunis means that I pay tax in Italy and the UK . No conscience salving necessary. I am paying for 2 different armed forces . Guess I’m doubly safe/ doubly salved ?



    The Government chooses what it spends the money raised from taxation on — a political decision . If they wanted to spend more on the Military they would – that would mean they would spend less on other things.-or put up taxes




    No everybody does it argument from me —– merely one that says [ using/extending your argument ] that everybody who doesn’t pay the tax that they should is as guilty as The Hun when it comes to to the armed forces being underfunded..

  17. My wee,hopefully positive, contribution to the topical debate.


    1.It’s painfully obvious that there is a lack of clarity from the authorities about what is and isn’t ok to sing about at football grounds.In order to move forward on this subject, absolute clarity MUST be provided ie a definitive list of songs/lines from songs/add-ons etc which,if sung,will result in arrest and banning from the ground.


    2.Celtic FC must then provide the same absolute detailed clarity on same and the consequences for those choose to sing the “banned” songs/lyrics


    3. Each individual Celtic supporter can then choose to


    a.stop going to games


    b.keep going and sing the banned songs/lyrics regardless of the consequences for themselves and Celtic FC


    c.keep going to games but adhere to the published “rules”



    The present situation whereby there is an absence of clarity around what is and isn’t acceptable must be addressed in the first instance.Then people will be clear about what their choices are and the consequences of the course of action they choose.


    There remains,however,the less than small matter of the authorities making sure that the type of behaviour/singing “outlawed” among Celtic supporters is balanced and equal among the fans of other clubs

  18. TET



    I’m no engineer but the technology installation costs seemed to have been hugely reduced with this product.


    Just a piece of interst anyhoo.

  19. This clip below says it all really and if anyone think’s stopping at the IRA chants will be the last of it then please don’t come back in a few months and say i wish we done more.






    The huns have had bad news for months now and they also got charged by UEFA and now its about evening it up and if the celtic support can’t see this then they have completely lost the plot.



    Tell me this where have all these people been hiding when the huns were singing in full voice at the cup final and and at recent dons game.


    Tell me whats the difference between the story above and the 17 year old for us who got arrested..



    People can say eddie smith is a celtic fan all they like but to me he will never be a celtic fan because he has just sold his soul to the devil the establishment.


    I will ask you this why don’t you ever hear of a ex ref or ex copper grass on the huns exactly never.



    People need to wake up and smell the coffee what will be next if IRA chants stop because this won’t be the end of it and that’s a fact.



    Why is every MP against this new bill hmmm, fat sally starts it and he gets 3 players sen’t off and Neil gets blame and the players get off and diouf is aloud to run to the crowd and still walks free.



    Neil lennon the victim gets death threats from the UDA a terrorist organisation and also 2 people who are members of the rangers club and orange order.


    Neil then gets attacked at a game and once again the victim is punished because his attacker gets off.



    Before anyone comes back and says you support IRA chants well no i dont but the story above shows this rat sang about a terrorist organisation and why no arrest for him or big investigation.



    This country is a protestant country and they hate all things celtic,catholic,irish and if people honestly think this government is hear to help catholics who support celtic they have another thing coming.



    Now get aff yer arses and start doing something about this before it’s to late…

  20. jeez_I_thought_blinker_was_pants on




    Agreed mate, I thought the same, although rather than clever thinking, it was the fact that Sammy was having a good game. See what happens when the Sammy haters stay at home!

  21. wdh



    It’s a bit like solar panels, getting cheaper by the day.



    The technology used is similar to wave power, simple hydrolic rams, don’t know why I didn’t think of it sooner :>)

  22. Whisky or Whiskey





    A Scotsman who spells


    Whisky with a n ‘e’,


    should be hand cuffed


    and thrown head first in the Dee,



    In the USA and Ireland,


    it’s spelt with an ‘e’


    but in Scotland


    it’s real ‘Whisky’.



    So if you see Whisky


    and it has an ‘e’,


    only take it,


    if you get it for free!



    For the name is not the same


    and it never will be,


    a dram is only a real dram,


    from a bottle of ‘Scotch Whisky’.




    Der Barde des Banff





    Whisky oder Whiskey?



    Ein Schotte, der Zauber


    Whisky mit einem n ‘e’,


    Hand cuffed werden sollte


    und ausgelöste Kopf zuerst in die Dee.



    In den USA und Irland,


    Es ist mit einem “e” Dinkel


    aber in Schottland


    Es ist echte “Whisky”.



    Also, wenn Sie, Whisky sehen


    und es hat ein ‘e’,


    nehmen Sie es nur,


    Wenn Sie es kostenlos!



    Für den Namen ist nicht das gleiche


    und wird es nie sein,


    ein Dram ist nur eine echte Dram,


    aus einer Flasche “Scotch Whisky”.



    Stanley Bruce.


    20Th April 2004

  23. Has Ol’ Bhonty flounced? Just logged on to see he agreed with me that the Orcs should pay their taxes. That was all it took, but Bonty leaves it in such a way that you are never sure if he means it. You see, the biggest lie will always have some truth in it, so that those people reading it say “Now that’s a very good point/argument”. I think he’s a splitter, and a very good one. Adept with words, so educated, probably grammar school, and deft in argument, so also probably degree level. Anyone who has read my posts knows I’m as big a Republican as anyone, and I have the history to prove it, but the songs debate should have been put to bed long ago. There’s an old saying in Belfast–“Use yer head, yer feet’s for dancin'”. Change the few words and keep the songs. And by the way–TBOTOB was first sung at Christmas 1971 by the internees in Long Kesh. Paddy Joe McGuigan wrote the song in the camp. They all sung it, even Desi O’Hagan, head Stickie in the camp, and fervent Marxist. It was given to a band called the Wolfjound who then recorded it. All proceeds went to the Civil Rights Movement becauseRosaleen Twomey, who was in charge of Green Cross at the time, wanted all proceeds. The band could only give their royalties, which was why the CRM got the money. I know. I was there.

  1. Pages:
  2. 1
  3. 2
  4. 3
  5. 4
  6. 5
  7. 6
  8. 7
  9. 8
  10. 9
  11. ...
  12. 27
Do Not Sell My Personal Information