BENCHMAN: Falkirk’s ‘Limbo-land’

Who is this week's mystery player?
Who is this week's mystery player?

The Benchman reflects on the uncertain silence and sadness around Falkirk, but success for a former Bairn.

EAST, WEST- HOME’S BEST?: Will we be joining the ranks of clubs owned by overseas investors? The recent history of investment in British Football is a mixture of relief, despair, scandal and betrayal. Sure- some clubs have grabbed the money and enjoyed fleeting days in the sun- but have paid a terrible price for their attempts to live the dream. Careful what you wish for.

THE SHIREY PIREY: At least The Shire die-hards had a Cup Final to enjoy and who would begrudge them that. They have had an impressive run of form in the latter part of the season and have taken a few notable scalps along the way.

TAYLOR-MADE: Good to see Lyle Taylor starring for Charlton in their play-off games on TV. He was always a good player with Falkirk and his 24 league goals from 34 league games proved a launching- pad for a career that was stuttering to say the least. Now aged 29, he showed lots of good touches, that familiar turn of pace- and an interesting hairstyle.

POISONED CHALICE?: Older readers and film buffs will remember the Danny Kaye film “The Court Jester”. In it, he must try to remember a rhyme to avoid drinking from a goblet containing poison. One is OK, but one is deadly. I wonder if the candidates for the Scotland manager’s job felt the same way. The club job or the Scotland job? The pellet with the poison’s in the flagon with the dragon, the vessel with the pestle has the brew that is true.

FALKIRK ON FILM: While building the archive history of Falkirk FC on film, it is a great shame that we have yet to discover any moving images of players like Patsy Gallagher, Bob Shankly, Kenny Dawson or Archie Aikman. We have managed to collect films of Alex Parker and John White, as well as rare amateur footage of the 1957 Cup Final in colour and the Brockville Sports five-a-sides.

ANSWERS: Last week’s player was of course Alex Ferguson.

FINAL MEMORIES: It was hard to watch the fleets of supporter’s buses leaving Manchester for the FA Cup Final without recalling the fantastic atmospheres of 1997, 2009 and 2015 in Falkirk, as a town became a football club and we all dreamed of glory. Seems a long, long time ago.

CLOSED SEASON?: European Nations Cup, Women’s World Cup, Euro 2020 Qualifiers. The close season should be about a weeklong When does The Wee Red Book come out?