The fallout continues over the ticketing for Rangers forthcoming Scottish Cup tie at Tannadice.
The background to this ongoing saga is well documented.
Rangers supporters groups called for a boycott in retaliation for perceived injustices at the hands of the Arabs. In 2009, United refused to refund ticket money after a match was abandoned (although a court of law found they had acted appropriately). More recently, United was one of ten clubs that voted against Rangers being admitted to the SPL. The United chairman Stephen Thompson is seen by many as having been particularly outspoken against Rangers.
Charles Green recently cited United as having been “…actively engaged in trying to harm Rangers…” and confirmed that the club would not be taking up a ticket allocation.
United subsequently asked the SFA to withhold Rangers’ share of the ticket proceeds but the SFA refused and ruled that Rangers were entitled to their share (rightly so in my opinion).
The Arabs have since announced that they will be setting aside an area for away fans and selling tickets directly to Rangers supporters. Green expressed concern this could lead to crowd trouble, partly because there will be no way of knowing if the tickets are being sold to genuine Rangers fans and partly because of the ongoing tension that exists between the fans of both clubs.
Green also made the ludicrous suggestion that United should not sell tickets to their own fans and should allow the ground to be filled by Rangers fans only. Aye, ok Charlie.
In this writer’s opinion, Charles Green is very hypocritical as regards his safety concerns.
When supporters groups first called for a boycott, it was a move that was welcomed by most Rangers fans, as was Green’s decision to refuse tickets. There is no doubt that it improved his standing with the Rangers family. Perhaps that was his real motive.
The supporters groups do not however speak for every Rangers fan and nor does Charles Green. There are many who disagreed. More pertinently, there are many who said they would still try to attend the match – and it seems safe to say some of those fans would indeed have got tickets.
Picture that scenario for a moment: pockets of Rangers fans interspersed throughout the home support at such a high tension match.
If that isn’t a recipe for crowd trouble then I don’t know what is.
Those Rangers fans will now find themselves in a properly segregated area.
And that is most certainly a far safer option.
Written by PrideandnoPrejudice