Rangers on the 'road to nowhere'

Written by Peter Doyle.

SWISS psychologist Carl Gustaf Jung is best-known for the concept of synchronicity, which he defined as unrelated events occurring together in a meaningful manner.

According to Jung, some co-incidences are just too wacky and can't be explained away as mere chance.

Standing outside Ibrox when a large, white truck rolled up outside the Broomloan Road end with the slogan 'Road to Nowhere' emblazoned across its side in big, bold black letters, I knew what he meant.

Now, the main reason why a life-long Celtic fan was hanging around the empty stadium on a wet Friday morning during the worse period of that club's 140-year history was simple: I was there to have a good old gloat.

I was also taking photographs for Libero, a European football guide that has just been released as an app for both android and iPhone.

Peter Doyle was on hand to capture the cheeky stunt outside Ibrox
 
Written by football and travel journalist Peterjon Cresswell, and based on his much-loved and sorely missed 'Rough Guide to European Football', the guide aims to be the most up-to-date travel companion to football's most exciting destinations.

But the reason why this truck was here wasn't so clear.

Moments later the driver leapt out of the cab to take a snap of his cheeky stunt on his phone.

But before speeding off he told me the truck was part of an arts project for Glasgow City Council.

I don't know much about art but I know what I like.

A Google search revealed the truck was the creation of group called The Pipe Factory, and it had toured Glasgow last summer as part of the city's International Festival of Visual Art.

Further investigation ( ie googling) showed that The Pipe Factory was a design studio based in the east end of Glasgow, in the heart of Celtic territory - the Calton.

This would make a cracking wee tale for the papers, I thought.

The old club's financial crisis was dominating both the front and back pages of the chip-wrappers, so I tipped off a couple of my old tabloid contacts about the photograph's existence and waited for the phone to ring.

It never did.

It seems some things really are too good to true - and the snap has yet to be published.

Strange, as the image neatly encapsulates the problems that Rangers faced then and which the newcofaces now - but the apparent lack of interest reminds me of a Tony Benn quote.

'Most things in life are moments of pleasure and a lifetime of embarrassment; photography is a moment of embarrassment and a lifetime of pleasure.'

Maybe this permanent reminder about the acute embarrassment inflicting both Rangers and their fans was too much for some in Scotland's mainstream media.

Or as one Hibs-daft hack working for a Scottish red-top told me:

"Like it Peter, unfortunately as you well know this place is polluted with Huns so this would have no chance of getting in."

Six months on, newco Rangers remain very much on the 'road to nowhere'.

Plans for league reconstruction could leave them rooted in the bottom tier of Scottish fitba' for another season at least.

Owner Charles Green made a bizarre, if veiled, threat to sue Uefa for sexual discrimination if they vetoed a desperate bid to relocate the club to England's Conference set-up.

And the oldco escaped with little more than a slap on its dead wrist for failing to disclose secondary contracts worth around £47m in extra payments to more than 60 players to the SFA.

As for the fans, well recent events in Berwick reveal they've been on the 'road to nowhere' since the 17th century...

Art imitating life? Synchronicity? You couldn't make it up.

Thirty-five cities and 90 clubs are featured in the Libero Football Guide, which is available for download now. Visit www.liberoguide.com/ for further details.

Peter Doyle is a former news reporter from Scotland who is now working as sub-editor in Dublin for the Irish Independent.


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