BENCHMAN: Farce at Killie, mess at Hampden

How would you describe Sunday? The Benchman has a go.


With apologies to Radio 2 presenter Simon Mayo, my three word summary of that last game could be anything from Men Against Boys, Totally Muscled Out, Collum’s Nightmare Performance, Game Too Far to Fabulous Bairns Support. What a massive let-down- and the players knew it. Never have I seen such fantastic support for a team thumped 4-0 in a “final”. The Falkirk fans were a real credit to their town and their team.


How did Killie do it? Tickets with sections, rows and seat numbers. One ticket per seat. Simples. No. Several Falkirk fans spent the whole game in gangways, sitting on steps or leaning on barriers. The Killie stewards were totally inept, and tried to stop people who had gone to the toilet or to the pie stalls from getting back to their seats, unless they produced their numbered ticket. Young children were visibly distressed by the sheer incompetence of the operation.


If that guy is our best whistler, we are indeed in dire trouble. His display at Rugby Park was the worst I’ve seen since I don’t know when. Oh, yes I do- the last time I saw him referee. Howler followed howler and in the end, some of us ended up laughing at his failures to detect kicks, grabbing, holding and pushing. And he is going to the Euro 2016 Finals?


Rioting fans. Pitch invasions. Mounted Police. Turf dug up. Players and officials at risk. The scenes at Hampden were an absolute disgrace. Not to mention flares going off and clearly audible chants and songs of a sectarian nature. 1980? 
No- 2016.


Brendan Rogers arrives at Parkhead, Yogi leaves Inverness. Craig Tully goes. Colin Nish departs .Gary Locke is at Raith, while Ray McKinnon moves to Tannadice. In no other job is another position so readily available after what some might see as “failure”. Some of the names being bandied around for the Celtic job included a few whose recent CVs were less than glittering. Saturday night’s Radio Five Live spat between Paddy Crerand and a sports journalist was not the kind of thing you like to hear. Van Gaal is out. No he’s not. Yes he is. He’s behind you. Oo-er Missus.


Last week’s picture featured a Second Division Select which played Scotland Under 23 at Brockville Park. It included Ian Rae, Jim Oliver and Dougie Moran. Ron Yeats, then of Dundee United, is second from the right in the back row. Falkirk signed Dean Holden from Peterborough United in 2007.


To which club did Falkirk transfer Michael Higdon in 2009?

BENCHMARKS (Kilmarnock home leg)

Match Rating: 8

Team rating: 7

Opposition: 7

Referee: Beaton 5

Best Bairn: David McCracken

BENCHMARKS (Kilmarnock away leg)

Match rating: 5

Team rating: 5

Opposition: 6

Referee: Collum 1

Best Bairn: The entire away support.