Archive for Northern Ireland

Team GB ‘historic agreement’ – non-English FAs not impressed

Posted in England, FIFA with tags , , , , , , on June 24, 2011 by Tartan Army Soldier

The British Olympic Association (BOA) recently reported an ‘historic agreement’ with the English FA. The result of this is that there will be a Team GB taking part in the London 2012 Olympics. Not surprisingly, the SFA and counterparts in Wales and Northern Ireland are, to put it mildly, somewhat upset.

To be honest it all seems a bit of a nonsense. From what I understand, the agreement will allow English players to take part in Team GB during the forthcoming 2012 Olympics. The SFA and FAs in Wales and Northerm Ireland are, as expected, not happy. Each opposes a Team GB. The prospect of anything that would dilute the independence of the separate national teams is never going to go down well. And, despite FIFA promises of the contrary, they see Sepp Blatter and co. using this as an opportunity to push for a permanent UK team. Noone outside of England will tolerate such a move, so opposition is intense.

I’m as against Team GB as anyone. However I think the furore may be irrelevant and too little too late. The FA state that their counterparts in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have stated that they are not going to prevent players from joining Team GB. So, does any of the recent controversy really matter? If all British players are free to play for a UK Olympic team why does there need to be any ‘historic agreement’? What purpose does it have? And the three other football associations seem to have put themseleves in a position where they can do nothing to prevent non-English paticipation.

I think the other home nations are to blame more than anyone. They seem to be making a fuss about a situation that their past weakness has made unavoidable. They are in no plaace to stop Team GB and are shouting loudly to appear they appear to be without guilt. I’m happy to criticise the FA and BOA when they deserve it. However, I think at least some of the blame lies closer to home.

Scotland 0-0 Northern Ireland

Posted in Friendlies with tags , on August 21, 2008 by Tartan Army Soldier

Well, I can’t pretend to be over the moon. Northern Ireland are not the best team in the world and we had home advantage. A victory was surely on the cards. Alas it wasn’t to be.

We met up in the Famous 3 Kings in West Kensington. With other Scotland fans a few Northern Irish we sat down to watch what we hoped would be an entertaining game. And with England fans in the next room, it looked like it could be an interesting evening.

Famous 3 Kings

Famous 3 Kings

There certainly were some good moments. Mcfadden was playing his heart out, and there were a few good shots at goal including Barry Robson’s effort from 25 yards. However, even after Northern Ireland’s McGivern was sent off, Scotland were unable to put the ball in the back of the net. Then, the worst thing happened. A penalty to Nothern Ireland!

Northern Ireland had made a break for the Scotland goal. Gooalkeeper, McGregor, trying to stop Feeney’s advance, brought him to the ground, earning the opposition a penalty. Nightmare! We were all an tenter-hooks. Could the Ramgers keepr redem himself for his error. Yes!!!! Yes he could. What an outstanding effort.

Unfortunately that was the highpoint of the match. The game ended goalless. And George Burley has yet to provide a victory. We all drank up and went home.

Next stop Macedonia. Time for a victory I hope.

Scotland v Northern Ireland – Squad Announced

Posted in Friendlies, Scotland Squad with tags , , on August 12, 2008 by Tartan Army Soldier

Goalkeepers
Craig Gordon (Sunderland)
David Marshall (Norwich City)
Allan McGregor (Rangers)

Defenders
Darren Barr (Falkirk)
Christophe Berra (Heart of Midlothian)
Gary Caldwell (Celtic)
Callum Davidson (Preston North End)
Stephen McManus (Celtic)
Kevin McNaughton (Cardiff City)
Gary Naysmith (Sheffield United)
Steven Whittaker (Rangers)

Midfielders
Scott Brown (Celtic)
Kris Commons (Derby County)
Darren Fletcher (Manchester United)
Paul Hartley (Celtic)
James Morrison (West Bromwich Albion)
Gavin Rae (Cardiff City)
Barry Robson (Celtic)
Kevin Thomson (Rangers)

Forwards

Kris Boyd (Rangers)
David Clarkson (Motherwell)
Steven Fletcher (Hibernian)
James McFadden (Birmingham City)
Kenny Miller (Rangers)

FIFA Rankings – Scotland squad within one place of England

Posted in England, FIFA, Friendlies, Scotland Squad with tags , , on July 4, 2008 by Tartan Army Soldier

The new FIFA rankings came out earlier this week. Good news for Scotland. And not-so-good news for England. Scotland are now ranked 16th, up one place from last month’s 17th position. More interestingly though is that the England team is now only one place ahead of Scotland. With Scotland facing Northern Ireland and England going up against the Czech Republic on August 20, who comes out ahead as the top-ranked British team is anyone’s guess.

My money is on Scotland. I reckon we can get the better Northern Ireland and predict a draw at Wembley. That should be enough to push past England.

FIFA Rankings

FIFA Rankings

Scotland v Northern Ireland tickets to go on sale July 1

Posted in Friendlies, World Cup 2010 with tags , on June 27, 2008 by Tartan Army Soldier

The SFA have announced that tickets for the Scotland v Northern Ireland friendly are to be made available to Scotland Supporters Club members from July 1. The Tennent’s International Challenge Match, at Hampden on August 20, will be the last Scotland game before the World Cup qualifiers. Tickets will cost £15 and £20.

I don’t know if I’ll be there. August is going to be a bonkers month. However I hope to get back to Scotland for the match. Failing that, I’ll be off to the Rob Roy near Paddington. Hopefully it’ll be a good result before we all fly to Macedonia.

Czech Republic v Scotland and Scotland v Northern Ireland friendlies lined up

Posted in Friendlies, George Burley, Scotland Coach, Tartan Army Abroad with tags , , , on March 25, 2008 by Tartan Army Soldier

At last. On the eve of the Scotland v Croatia tie, Scotland coach George Burley has confirmed two further Scotland friendlies. The Scotland squad will head over to Prague to face the Czechs on May 30 then Hampden Park will play host to the Northern Ireland team on Wednesday August 20.

Prague Supermarket

Plans are already afoot for a trip to Prague. Four or five days in the Czech Republic are on the cards – roughly two days before the game and two days after. With Prague being the world centre of beer (apparently they make and drink more beer than anyone else, including us Scots) it should be a monumental time. 🙂