St Mirren disproportionately effective, Frank


There was never any doubt that Frank McGarvey’s heart lay at Celtic, but he had an affection for St Mirren. There, under Alex Ferguson, he made his name as the figurehead in an attacking young team which won promotion from the First Division. From Love St, he won a move to the European champions and all that followed. It is fitting we face them tonight, just days after Frank’s funeral, when our thoughts returned to an irrepressible talent in his prime.

St Mirren lost at Tynecastle on Saturday, their first defeat since 5 November. That run of seven games saw them take points off the four teams that separate the champions from the Paisley side. You will not need reminding that they are the only domestic team to beat Celtic this season.

Every team in the league plays differently against more resourceful teams. What St Mirren’s form tells us is that they are disproportionately effective against top sides and less effective when they presumably have more of the ball against weaker opponents.

Celtic have been imperious at home this season, so we should be confident of at least maintaining our lead, but Stephen Robinson will have watched how Kilmarnock frustrated us for long periods on Saturday and will work on a plan to build on that. I’ll be glad to see us take the lead.

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  1. A cautionary tale for football broadcasters.



    Who remembers Napster? Back in the early advent of the digital age, when music was still sold on physical CDs at £3 for a single and £15 for an album in HMV and Virgin megastores, Napster was born originally as a file sharing platform. Enterprising users soon discovered that the “files” that can be shared can be anything, who knew for example that a music track was also a computer file? And a relatively small one at that, an MP3 music file could be transferred in as little as 10 minutes over the 56k internet connections which were cutting edge at the time.



    Pretty soon the music industry, which had been happily operating as an effective cartel for the previous 40 years, had a problem. It’s copyrighted material was being pirated, and not by 1000s of Del-boys selling dodgy CDs in a supermarket carpark, but by millions online using this single pesky application which could be downloaded for free. Napster.



    How did the music industry react? Predictably at first, as it turned out. Record companies sued Napster, claiming they were party to widespread illegal copyright infringement. Napster argued their servers merely put two parties in contact with each other for the purpose of transfer (peer-to-peer), they accepted no liability for the product such parties chose to share, nor does the shared product ever pass through Napster’s servers.



    How did it end? Napster lost the case and was forced into liquidation, so happily ever after, right? Not quite, the genie was out of the bottle. Copycat applications quickly sprung up following the same model, developed in bedrooms all around the world, and peer-to-peer file transfer was here to stay. Music consumers were voting with their feet in opposition to an over-priced industry run as a semi-cartel, in the only manner available to them. The sheer number of consumers choosing this vehicle made it impossible for the music industry to prosecute end users, nor could they keep up with the whack-a-mole of new application providers constantly popping up just as another was closed. Piracy had gone mainstream.



    The music industry was forced, by piracy, to fundamentally change both its delivery and pricing models to meet the epochal challenges of the digital age. And hence we got iTunes, Spotify and YouTude music. All thanks to a plucky little application called Napster.



    Why is this relevant? This same issue was always coming down the pipe for media providers in related industries, the only ticking time-bomb constraint was the bandwidth available to end users. In the current digital age with typical 1Gb internet connections, we see the growing groundswell of consumers provided with an accessible alternative for football viewing. Like music publishers before them, the time has come for football broadcasters to look again at their delivery and pricing models.

  2. SCULLYBHOY on 18TH JANUARY 2023 2:48 PM



    I was in the front stand about 3 seats away from the tunnel when that happened.



    I’ll never forget that ovation for Frank. He was tearful when he heard it.

  3. DalriadaBhoy on 18th January 2023 2:57 pm






    You have probably seen this



    Holocaust survivor, confronts Cruella Braverman about her use of language to describe refugees



    Scariest thing is the tories applauding Cruella at the end and that the home off8ce tried to get a charity to take down their link to this







    I hadn’t actually seen this, so thank you my friend.

  4. HRVATSKI JIM on 18TH JANUARY 2023 3:13 PM


    SCULLYBHOY on 18TH JANUARY 2023 2:48 PM



    I was in the front stand about 3 seats away from the tunnel when that happened.



    I’ll never forget that ovation for Frank. He was tearful when he heard it.



    I remember that game. Frank said he was sick at half time. He ran about like a man possessed in that game and most others. A chaser of lost causes par excellence. Met him a couple of times and had a few beers with him a couple of years ago. Really nice guy, just as you’d imagine.

  5. SONSOFERIN re: Napster



    Memory lane there. I remember when I moved to the US I brought all my CDs that I had burned from Napster and others. Still have them in the attic.



    You got me thinking about all of the sites I used to use.










    Ah, the good old days.

  6. bournesouprecipe on




    Napster ! What larks



    Wee Sean Parker the founder, is now a billionaire 👍

  7. Aipple/BSR – Any use of Napster was restricted solely to producing backup copies of music already purchased via other means, allegedly.

  8. So it’s daft question time if none of us pay broadcasters to watch Football or any other sports who takes the cameras to the game?

  9. SCULLYBHOY on 18TH JANUARY 2023 3:21 PM


    Hrvatski Jim on 18th January 2023 3:13 pm


    I think we didnt appreciate how lucky we were to have him.



    I remember him as a fans favourite but he followed some real all-time greats so maybe was not appreciated as much as he should have been. Wish we had him through the nineties.

  10. Sons of Erin.



    Thanks for that great essay on Napster,it was so true,the freedom was tremendous as you say.



    There is always a bit of code out there to enable access. I already think it is fragmenting SoE.and football should pay attention but they do what they the tv company suggest as the tv deal is now fundamental to the game.we as fans buckle to changed k.o etc.teams accepted into league etc.,uefa ukdistribution,its the falling in love wi a mermaid/sup wi the devil with broadcasters.



    Had a great impact on dj scene to SoE all these links to fusions/mixes,




  11. The Rangers club didnt die , it em, was em, whats it called again, still the same, deid but the same, as it was before, nothing changed,

  12. My first Celtic Park game was in early ’83 vs Aberdeen in the Jungle



    I thought we were going to get a doing as my dead kept slagging Nicholas (despite his goal), saying he was lazy. He did also extoll the virtues of McGarvey with his work rate .



    My mother used to love Frank’s happy celebrations on the TV; contrasting him with the ‘angry’ Rangers celebrations



    I really liked him and was sad that things didn’t go well for him financially; a common problem then

  13. SONSOFERIN agreed but football isn’t music, Spotify etc make money off subscribers or advertisers.



    Show me the incentive to invest a lot of cash in outside broadcasting if no one pays, the music industry just changed from physical CDs etc to digital, not much investment required



    The medium may change to streaming but the majority will have to pay or it won’t be done

  14. HRVATSKI JIM on 18TH JANUARY 2023 3:13 PM


    SCULLYBHOY on 18TH JANUARY 2023 2:48 PM







    I was in the front stand about 3 seats away from the tunnel when that happened.







    I’ll never forget that ovation for Frank. He was tearful when he heard it.




    I was in the Jungle that Day, and the place went ” RADIO RENTAL” beat the three St Mirren players and fired the Ball high into the net.



    it was the next day thru the ” Newspaper” that it was reported that Frank was PHYSICALLY Sick in the Toilet at half time, because of the ovation that the Celtic Supporters had given HIM and his performance in that first half.


    NO Internet back then so we were forced to buy ” Newspapers”.



  15. Oh dear. What happened here?


    Swansea City head coach Russell Martin says Scottish giants Rangers are the club who have failed with a bid for forward Morgan Whittaker.



    Rangers boss Michael Beale is targeting attacking players this month and said Whittaker is “certainly a player that I’m aware of”.



    Martin has now confirmed Swansea turned down a Rangers bid for forward Whittaker, 22, last week.



    “We have rejected an offer from them, that’s it,” Martin said.



    Rangers’ offer for Whittaker was understood to have been well short of the asking price set by Swansea’s American owners

  16. SKY and the likes of BT and Amazon pay the FA billions to broadcast English football and then assume the consumers and advertisers will pay for it.


    How do they get themselves out of the mess when each time the contracts need renewing they bid even more crazy sums?



    At the moment, the Premier League’s overseas broadcasting rights for 2022-2025 is worth £5.05 billion, while UK broadcast rights is worth £5 billion.

  17. Tom McLaughlin on





    Yer a rascal. I see you’ve bagged another 👆



    Aye but who would have thought it would be Ernie?




  18. By mess, I meant how could they even begin to remodel their approach (like the music media did)? The FA holds all the aces, no?

  19. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    St Stivs @ 2:18pm



    Brilliant link to St Mirren cup tie in 1977.



    I find these clips nostalgic and depressing in equal measure.



    Point already made about the crowd.



    St Mirren were a great team and the ground was jam packed with spectators.



    Look at their home ground now.



    Standard template 4 single tier stands with roofs lower than a semi-detached house.



    Many Scottish clubs had sizeable fan bases.



    And not just during peak years in 1930s.



    They’ve deliberately made themselves smaller and let large chunks of those fan bases drift away.

  20. SONSOFERIN on 18TH JANUARY 2023 4:02 PM



    It has never really recovered, though.



    There is a lesson for the rights owners. The music industry had priced recorded music so high that when a free alternative came along, even though MP3s were a massive reduction in quality from CDs people were prepared to fill their hard drives up with buggy files and play them over poor quality computer speakers.



    They messed up again when they priced downloads so high, then again when they agreed to set the cost to the customer and the royalty rates for streaming so low.



    I worked in the music industry through all of this, I remember Spotify growing from nothing to being the biggest source of income for some of the labels I looked after, but even then nobody was making any money, except for a few big live acts.

  21. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    Dalriadabhoy @ 2:57pm – cheers.



    Worst thing about this for me?



    That the Home Office felt empowered to intervene with the charity.



    Absolutely shameful.



    This was a concern raised about Tory rhetoric.



    Bugger all to do with the Home Office.



    Clear consequence of the blurring of the demarcation lines when a shower have been in power too long and their special advisors being perceived as pseudo civil service officials.



    Head of Civil Service, Simon Case, sets the tone.



    Hopelessly compromised.



    A place man despised by many in the civil service.

  22. Camusbhoy – No one’s suggesting football’s solution will be the same as music’s solution. However they will have to find a solution as they cannot control the threat. And as with music there will always be money to be made so don’t worry about the whole industry closing shop.



    Deniabhoy – Granted, but this is one of the elements which will likely have to change. Simply put Sky and BT will stop bidding billions when they lose the ability to recover that investment through subscription broadcasting, as they see their market seeking “other more cost efficient” methods. The change won’t be easy on the current providers, and we’ll see those unwilling or too slow to adapt falling away.

  23. paulsthroughball88 on

    I had to report a racist sticker at a nearby bus stop recently. The letters RFC in white set out against a blue background attempting to copy the logo on football shirts. Below that the words ‘BILLY BOYS”, and then, most disturbingly, an open razor emblem.



    This showed that whoever produced the sticker knows the song isn’t about any Dutch king.



    I had no idea who had attached the sticker, or when, so I contacted my local council here in Scotland to report it under racist/sectarian graffiti, and within the week the sticker had been removed.



    I’m glad to say the sticker hasn’t reappeared in the weeks since.



    Source: ME.

  24. DENIABHOY on 18TH JANUARY 2023 4:33 PM



    BT and Amazon don’t make any money from football, it’s about growing their companies.



    Conversely Sky need EPL football or they die, they don’t have anything else profitable enough to make them a sustainable business

  25. SKY doesn’t make money from football as such… it makes it from people buying sports channels and advertising ( that’s why SKY are very reticent about giving out viewing figures for football) If viewing figures go down advertising revenue goes down as well. A few seasons ago the was l aleaked document that showed only 30,000 watched an EPL match…

  26. Celtic40me



    Someone told me recently that vinyl is recorded from the digital format so they are not as good as the vinyl we had years ago. Is that true?



    also, the old shareholder of my company was in town once and had been through a major screw up in buying EMI for too high a price. He said that one way to reverse that was to pre-pay production costs with advertising, e.g., Kylie had just brought out a new album but she was endorsing all sorts of products around the launch. Any CD sales were profit.



    He also said that her 2 dates in Dublin would just break even or lose some money. This was due to all the back up she needs for the show (lights, costumes, dancers etc).


    The ones that make money are the 5 night runs at Wembley etc when costs are covered. I asked why they bother with Dublin gigs and he said it was to sell CDs.



    The ones that make money for him were rock bands like Metallica where it is just 4 musicians, amps, roadies and every gig sells out and every punter buys a t-shirt



    Funny old game Saint

  27. bournesouprecipe on




    Transfer style guidelines



    “ Morgan Whittaker issues Gers a come and get me plea “

  28. Spotify have made and continue to make huge losses.



    The music industry hasn’t got a working model in place yet for recorded music

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