The Benchman: Clubs are fooling no one with attendance figures

Former Rangers player George Young in January 1975. But what Falkirk district side did he play for as a junior? Tweet your answer @FalkirkHeraldSp
Former Rangers player George Young in January 1975. But what Falkirk district side did he play for as a junior? Tweet your answer @FalkirkHeraldSp

The Benchman groans as Maurice Malpas begins ticking the boxes.

JUST DESSERTS? Sometimes you don’t get what you deserve in football. Lots of attacking play, plenty of chances and yet no goals. Raith looked dangerous, made three chances and took one. Mind you- they had a bit of a penalty claim as well.

ATTENDANCES AND TV: I believe in the Tooth Fairy, the Loch Ness Monster, Santa Claus and the Abominable Snowman, but I just can’t believe some of the attendances given out by clubs. Why not just give the real figure of clicks through the turnstiles? Against Raith, on a freezing cold evening, with live TV coverage there were 3358 allegedly in the Falkirk Stadium. Right.

TIRED? One English Premiership player was taken off because he looked “tired” and the manager wanted to save him for the next big game coming up. Tell that to the Falkirk players who played in an incredible run of games at the end of 1956/57 season. Games on the Wednesday, the Friday, the Saturday and the Monday- four games in six days. That’s tired.

TICKING BOXES: The interview with Raith’s new director of football, Maurice Malpas was a classic of its type. The naive interviewer asked him why he thought Raith had given him the job. The main reason, as Mr Malpas said (repeatedly) was that he “ticked the boxes”. Save us from any more stepping up to the plate, standing up to be counted, games of two halves, vomiting parrots, sore ones to take, getting out of jail, early doors and the like. Just say what you really mean!

BBC ALBA: Who wants to go to see a second-tier match starting at 5.30 p.m. on a Saturday evening? You can just imagine the sheer delight in Aberdeen, Inverness, Dundee, Glasgow and Edinburgh as they discover there is a live game on TV - and it’s Cowdenbeath v Alloa. Woweee! And in Gaelic!

NEIL WARNOCK: An interesting call by the trigger-happy Palace board. Neil Warnock was sacked after their Boxing Day defeat by a lively Southampton side. He was too much old school. His style of football was more geared to the Championship. Excuse me, but isn’t this the guy you appointed only a matter of months ago, when you knew all this anyway? A recipe for disaster? A panic reaction? Tony Pulis must be having a wry smile now.

ANSWERS: The team that Falkirk have beaten twice are Newcastle United. The first was a 2-1 on January 3 in a televised game on October 20, 1940, and the second win came 1953 when Falkirk won 3-2.

TEASER: Which Falkirk player had 26 caps for Nigeria?

MYSTERY PIC: The great George Young is pictured above in his later years. But which local team did he play for as a junior?