Belfast Telegraph

Friday 4 September 2015

‘Norn Iron’ fans are a real credit to your country

Published 27/08/2008

I was at Hampden Park last Wednesday night with my wee son watching the drudgery that was the Scotland and Northern Ireland game.

However, there was one aspect of the match that lifted my spirits and that was the wonderful and gloriously noisy support bedecked in green and white.

I’ve watched Scotland home and away for 20 years, and there is no doubt that the away support last night was the best in terms of both numbers and noise that I’ve witnessed. And for a midweek friendly!

The bars in central Glasgow before the game were bouncing in good humour and good craic. The streets after the game were a mass of Ulstermen and women looking for a beer and filling the kebab shops.

You guys are an absolutely tremendous and a credit to your country.

During the whole occasion there was just the one downer and that was the disrespect shown to your national anthem.

Many years ago, when the Tartan Army were endeavouring to get the anti-Scottish God Save the Queen changed to Flower of Scotland, I booed and whistled with the best of them; but that was in response to the choice of anthem we were forcing upon ourselves.

For the Tartan hoards (well at least the ones who turned up) to counter your choice was as offensive as the ‘rebellious Scots to crush’ verse is to us.

So through your pages may I firstly apologise for the lack of respect given to your anthem played — regardless of any politics our behaviour was outrageous.

And secondly, let me sing the praises of the fabulous 7,000 ‘Norn Iron’ supporters who graced our national stadium with their colour, noise and sense of |humour.



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