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First it was liquidation and now possible expulsion, but in West Belfast we find...

Widespread sympathy for Rangers

By Ciara Quinn


TO the Americans, July 4 means Independence Day – but for the Scottish Premier League this will be the day clubs vote on whether Rangers Football Club stay in the league.

Rangers has ceased to operate after  liquidation and with 11 clubs left in the SPL, Rangers need the approval of eight of these to remain or they will face having to apply for a place in the third division of Scottish football.

Last week the fixture list for 2012/13 came out with an imaginary ‘Club 12’ filling the Rangers gap – until all the other clubs cast their vote on the matter. Meantime, supporters of Rangers – and of Celtic – can only watch and wait.

So, readers, the question is this: does the SPL and Celtic Football Club need Rangers or is it time for another Scottish football club to get a chance at the top table in place of the blue half of Glasgow?

The Andersonstown News paid a visit to the Kennedy Centre to ask local shoppers for their opinion on the ongoing saga that is Rangers.

Willowvale man and Manchester United supporter Tim Hamill told us: “I think the SPL need Rangers in the league because who else is Celtic going to play? Hearts and Hibs are rubbish compared to Celtic and Rangers.”

Celtic supporter Barry McCann agreed. “I think the SPL do need Rangers – it’s healthy competition for Celtic to play against them, after all.”

“The SPL needs Rangers in their league, it would be like the Premiership just having Liverpool and no Manchester United,” said Ballymurphy resident and West Ham United fan Michael Osbourne. “If you didn’t have Rangers there would just be one team in it then.”

Patrick Burns said: “First of all it’s terrible what has happened, especially for the Rangers’ fans – they have been robbed and the ordinary workers have been cheated by the goings-on at the club. I’m an Arsenal supporter and it is run within its limits and doesn’t over-extend itself as  has happened with Rangers. The SPL at the end of the day needs them, Celtic fans are looking for good competition at the games they attend.”

Finally Youth Support Supervisor with the Blackie River Centre Stacey Meenan, a keen Celtic supporter, said: “Celtic need Rangers for competition. The SPL would be boring without them, I don’t think there would be as many Celtic fans if it wasn’t for Rangers.”

That’s five-nil to Rangers in a West Belfast away fixture.

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