Hey Readers At around 4.50 PM on Saturday in the sunny south side of Glasgow Hibernian ended a 114 wait and finally claimed the Scottish Cup that generations of fans had only dared to dream of when they finally took the old trophy back to Leith for the first time since 1902 as they beat Rangers 3-2 in what was one of the most entertaining finals in recent years.
To put this final in context the last time Hibs won Scottish Football’s showcase event, Britain had an empire which reached all four corners of the globe, and the nation was still in shock at the death Queen Victoria the previous year and our armed forces were involved in a conflict overseas in this case the Boar War in which they had no chance whatsoever of success. Now the empire may be dead and gone but the Saxe Coburg Gothe aka Windsor family dynasty still reign over us and if you substitute South Africa for Afghanistan and Iraq we are still as clueless as we’ve always been in the field of international relations. So the more things change the more they stay the same
It was Celtic who were defeated 1-0 as the world adjusted to the early 20th century but 114 years Hibs had the chance to complete their personal old firm double as
it was Rangers who provided the opposition to give Scotland it’s first ever Scottish Cup Final which would be contested by two teams from outside our country’s top division. This in itself was a tremendous achievement for both clubs whom I would describe as top tier teams on loan to the lower leagues.
As for the game itself it was a cracking spectacle filled with fast paced football from kick off to final whistle and it was Hibs who seized the early initiative as Anthony Stokes on loan from Celtic giving them the lead after only 3 minutes as he scored from a tight angle to put the underdogs in front. The perfect start it may have been but the question in hearts and minds of every Leither was can I dare to dream this might be our day ? When Kenny Miller a born and bred Hibs fan equalised for Rangers the answer appeared to be no but determined to win
and end a run of 10 consecutive losing finals Hibs continued to gave as good as they got and could consider themselves unlucky not to be in the lead but at half time 1-1 scoreline set us up for a cracking second half.
As the second half started the game ebbed and flowed with both sides enjoying periods of dominance and but when Andy Halliday put Rangers 2-1 up with a 25 yard screamer in the 63rd minute Hibs fans must have thought oh my God here we go again it’s going to be another glorious or not so glorious failure
and for the next 15 minutes it certainly looked like it was going to be Rangers day.
Never ones to be anything less than triumphalist the Rangers fans started gave voice to there usual obnoxious sectarian chants and in doing so gave the perfect demonstration of the ugly side of nationalism. I refer of course the racist and colonial British nationalism so beloved by our sycophantic unionist press, media, and political establishment. Suddenly however realising they had to go for broke Hibs started to lay siege to the Rangers goal and within Anthony Stokes , Dylan McGeoch , and Liam Henderson and Jason Cummings all influential it was only a matter of time before they silenced the Ibrox choir by scoring a deserved equaliser Stokes heading home from a corner kick with Foderingham in the Rangers goal powerless to stop his effort.
As the commentary team talked of extra time and even the possibility of penalties to decide the outcome of this game both teams went in search of a winner and though the momentum was clearly with Hibs, Rangers were still a serious threat on the counter attack.
As the game entered injury time and extra time looking a distinct possibility the game took one final turn and with Hibs top scorer and talisman Jason Cummings still to score despite having a brilliant track record in this particular fixture Hibs gained a corner and it was from that an unlikely hero emerged as David Gray scored what would prove to be a dramatic winner and bring Hibernian’s 114 year wait for Scottish cup glory to an end.
In the anxious wait for the final whistle Hibs fans and indeed every neutral in the country were praying that time would pass quickly and the long wait would be over Indeed my fellow blogger BurdzEyeView reminded the players not to fall over in the last few seconds whilst I and every other Celtic or neutral fan in Scotland and beyond said a silent prayer for Hibs to hold their nerve. Eventually it came and Hibs had won the Scottish Cup for the first time in more than a century.
Amongst the scenes of joy however there was unfortunately trouble as some Hibs fans made their way on to the pitch and conducted themselves in a way unbecoming of football fans by attacking a Rangers player who formerly wore the colours of their arch rivals Hearts. This I believe was not the only incident as there were other Rangers players who were also attacked and according to my sources a man in a Rangers blazer aimed a kick in the direction of a Hibs fan and a number of Rangers fans ran in the direction of the Hibernian supporters launching completely unprovoked attacks on the celebrating fans. This bitter aftertaste carried on after the game with sections of the Hibs fans running riot on reaching Edinburgh and hordes of Rangers fans rampaging through Glasgow city centre with intent on causing mayhem to anyone who crossed their path.
To me these unsavoury incidents shames those involved but let’s be clear about this it shames a mindless minority of supporters of both clubs but only those those involved as the vast majority of both Hibs and Rangers supporters behaved impeccably. I do however have to say that the vile, vicious, and vindictive attempt by the Rangers board to get Hibs banned from Europe and their hysterical attacks on First Minister Nicola Sturgeon is the kind of behaviour I would expect from such a petty small minded club whose support have a rather unpleasant history when it comes to accepting defeat with dignity. Now some in the chattering classes may think I am being unkind with regards to this matter but it has to be said that given Rangers fans previous form for undesirable behaviour I found their club’s statement that their supporters had shown commendable restraint to be both insulting and laughable.
It is in my opinion, this kind of inflammatory language which fan the flames of division and our so-called national broadcasting corporation did nothing to dampen these flames as they seemed only too happy to make merry with the Billy Boys and other sectarian tunes but ended their air time by cutting short Sunshine On Leith a beautiful song with no sectarian lyrics whatsoever. Even in football the BBC just can’t disguise its unionist leanings. Believe me when I say this will do precisely nothing to win back the hearts and viewing figures of those those lost during the referendum who believed the BBC to be guilty of pro union bias.
So it passes in to History a Scottish Cup Final which unfortunately be remembered more at least by the press and establishment for the post match rammy than for the best and most entertaining showcase the Scottish game has seen in years
So let us not forget that the amidst the shenanigans there was a football match and my friend Audrey Marshall a Hibs fan for 30 years was delighted at the outcome on a day saw which showed fairytales can come true and was a potent mixture of Happiness, Grief , and Sunshine On Leith.
Love And Best Wishes