I have thought long and hard about my viewpoint on the situation with Rangers’ “Covidiots” and it has taken me until now to commit my views to print. I was still unsure exactly where I sit, however on the back of the Ibrox Noise piece earlier, as is hopefully the case with all Gers fans for all articles we do, I was inspired to add my voice to the discussion.
It’s undeniable that these boys have absolutely, 100% let the club down with their actions. To be involved with our club during what is arguably one of the most exciting times in our 149-year history is a massive privilege and regardless of covid, or any other external factors, and as professional athletes the interests of Rangers, representing each and every one of our supporters has to be their number one priority. In other words, breaching covid restrictions in any way at all, for whatever reason is absolutely unacceptable, not least when we’re so close to 55.
It’s unacceptable, but is it unforgivable? That’s the big question here. My answer would be no…but with certain caveats.
Firstly, let’s not forget that these are young boys (Zungu aside) and if we’d all care to think back to some of the things we got up to in our late teens, I’m sure the majority of us could recount an incidence or two that on reflection we’re not particularly proud of.
Yet we remain unjudged and able to continue in our respective employment, and in relation to the covid restrictions, I’m sure that some of us may have left a loved one’s house slightly after midnight on Christmas day, or met up with more than one household for a coffee and a walk round the park.
I would be lying if I said I haven’t thought about tearing it up down Paisley Road West when we clinch 55, regardless of what restrictions are still in place.
The point is, that because these guys are high profile, there has been no margin for error.
This all got me thinking, and of course this is just speculation, but I wonder just how common it is for footballers/high profile athletes to breach restrictions? Not a week goes by without some form of new sporting covid case, France’s men’s Rugby Union team at the weekend there for example. It’s done the rounds in football too, with a number of teams having players ruled out with Covid. Of course, they may have been doing all the right things, but unless they’re caught, who’s to say they haven’t been disregarding rules and mixing out with their respective bubbles?
Let’s not forget Phil Foden and Mason Greenwood bursting England’s covid bubble on international duty last year, they both seem to have moved on and it’s fair to say their careers are very much on track.
Surely our boys aren’t the only ones to have been a bit silly and risk a little get-together with friends and family? Either way, I think the bottom line is, whether we’re Rangers footballers, Ibrox Noise writers, Accountants, Mortgage advisors or NHS workers, we are all human beings and we all make mistakes.
With a more than winnable last 16 European tie to look forward to and that magic number of points getting ever closer domestically, this is shaping up to be a very special month, very special indeed.
I say everyone deserves a second chance, so let’s all move on and enjoy the next few weeks together, welcoming Nathan, Calvin and Bongani to the party that EVERYONE is permitted to attend.