There must have been unadulterated joy in Evening Times Towers following Sevco’s signing of “lifelong” Rangers and Sevco fan, Andy Halliday.
It was always going to be difficult for anyone to emulate ‘Wibbling’ Wes Foderingham – who gushed with enthusiasm about signing for Sevco, and gave a Level 5-standard display of ‘massive club’ guffery.
But Mr Halliday has had a damn good go at it!
And who better to cover the comedy than the Evening Times’ best Sevco commentator, Mr Chris Jack?
Chris really goes for this one, and the intro to the first of two pieces is classic stuff. Like all his best work, it begins like the opening of an epic novel, or the synopsis for a big-screen extravaganza!
“He didn’t need the guided tour of Murray Park and he has already heard the Ibrox roar.
Andy Halliday has returned to Glasgow and Rangers older, wiser and ready for the biggest challenge of his life.
After five years in England, Halliday is home and back in Light Blue ahead of a campaign that he hopes will allow him to inspire his boyhood heroes to return to the level they are accustomed to, and to the stages he saw them perform on from the stands.”
Have you got your bucket of popcorn and unfeasibly large carbonated drink to hand?
The movie is about to start!
“His return to Glasgow has given Halliday the chance to live the dream, just a few years after they were dashed and he almost turned his back on the game.
The midfielder was released from Murray Park as a kid and spent months considering his options after suffering a significant blow to his ambitions.”
But it’s the quotes from Halliday himself that really make the piece.
“It is hard to see the team skittle down the leagues and struggle to put in the results that everyone wants to get back into the Premiership.
“I am trying to be positive. This year is a fresh start, the gaffer and Davie Weir have come in and they are trying to change the playing style from scratch.
“For me, it is exciting to be part of the team that could take Rangers back to the Premiership. That is the only objective”.
Well done Andy! Nicely on-message there!
And ‘skittle down the leagues’ is a genuinely new take on ‘liquidated, and a new club with a familiar name was voted into the bottom tier of the senior game’!
But here comes the punchline…
“In my opinion, Scottish football needs Rangers and Rangers need Scottish football and the Premiership. It is an exciting time to hopefully get Rangers back to where they belong.”
Sadly the rest of Scottish football doesn’t agree with you and the Sevco spinmeisters, Andy. But we do like a trier!
“Back where they belong” indeed…
As for the second of the Evening Times’ two Halliday pieces… Well, if the first one read like a synopsis for a magnificent feature film, the second reads like the outline of a B-Movie comedy…
…wherein we are told the side-splitting tale of how Halliday’s mum attended an ‘Old Firm’ game [I bet Chris loved writing that now-redundant phrase!] when heavily pregnant.
And as Mr Halliday himself explains:
“She was about nine months gone, ready to drop – there would have been a ruckus had she dropped me at Parkhead. My old man would have gone mental!”
But aren’t quite finished yet…
“She was going to call me Mark after Mark Hateley, because he scored a double that day.
“That’s the full story, but I don’t like the first name Mark so I’m buzzing she chose something else”.
Absolutely side-splitting stuff!
And fair play to Andy Halliday for still ‘buzzing‘ about his name at the age of 23!
That’s some impressive enthusiasm!
But just in case you thought these two articles were only intended to reaffirm Sevco cliches and cause the universe to collapse from laughter, it turns out that there is a serious point to (quite literally) sell.
Both pieces carry pictures of Halliday holding a promotional board for tonight’s friendly against Burnley, and the first piece carries this helpful a̶d̶v̶e̶r̶t̶ information:
“Rangers take on Burnley at Ibrox tonight in a pre-season friendly – tickets are priced £10 for adults and £5 for kids and are available from the Ticket Centre up until kick-off or Pay at the Gate in the Copland Stand (Rear).”
Thanks for that Chris.
And thanks to the Evening Times website for some unintentional additional hilarity:
The irony of the Evening Times trying to differentiate between its Sevco piece, and…errr… “Promoted Stories” will not be lost on Clumpaneers!
Other recent tidings from Clumpany Towers include:
The Secret Conference
Protesting Too Much
The Warb Revelations