BBC BLOGS - BBC Sport: Chick Young
« Previous | Main | Next »

SPL split starts making sense

Chick Young | 15:30 UK time, Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Hold that result. I might have changed my mind again.

Yes, yes, yes I plead guilty to the crime of inconsistency. But this time my indecision is final.

It's the player of the year thing. A first it was Pedro Mendes and then it was maybe definitely Scott Brown, but now I just can't rule Andy Dorman out of the equation.

krisboyd446.jpgOh, and Kris Boyd has done not too shabbily.

And, incidentally, are we really going to play Norway in August with a 30-goal striker still in the huff with the national manager? Is there no Henry Kissinger-esque diplomat out there?

Meanwhile, don't give me that you-can't-give-it-to-a-player-whose-club-haven't-won-anything argument.

That didn't compute for Alan Rough, Gordon Wallace and Andy Ritchie and it doesn't add up now.

And as for the manager of the season, give me a break. How can you vote now when the business end of the term has still to unfold.

Sure, Csaba Laszlo has a case... but what if Gus MacPherson or John Hughes keep his club in the SPL and win the Scottish Cup? What if Gordon Strachan or Walter Smith completes a domestic double?

It's all dreadfully confusing and I can't get to sleep at nights. No wonder I take a wee nightcap.

But at least we are on the edge of our seats, hooked if not exactly by the Barcelona-like quality of our game, but at least by the thrill of the every-kick-matters climax of the season.

Years ago I wouldn't have given you a double blank for the top six and the split, but I've been wooed. And wow-ed.

After the weekend there will be just one team lost in the no-man's land of seventh position where Hibs or Motherwell - for it is one of them - will have no chance of Europe and no chance of relegation.

Celtic or Rangers will be champions - but then we knew that as we lay on the beaches last summer.

Except at times their performances have been so fragile that Hearts are entitled to wonder what might have been had they just been a little more solid on occasions.

Never mind splitting the Old Firm, because given that there is just a point between them you couldn't do that without the help of a hammer and a chisel, how about the championship itself?

I put it to you that this might have been the season for the overtaking lane.

It's been an odd few months. Embarrassed in Europe, Rangers went out of two competitions in four months inclusive of a close season.

We were left to amuse ourselves in our own backyard before St Andrews Day, albeit Celtic had to go through the motion of final meaningless Champions' League fixture.

And for a while you might as well have looked to Fir Park for the green shoots of recovery. I watched some bad games in the deepest mid-winter.

But with the spring came hope. We had brilliant entertainment at Tynecastle on Saturday, and another thriller at St Mirren Park on Monday night.

And it's no coincidence. I put it to you, that the quality of the football grows with the grass.

Weather and pitch conditions are huge factors in the playing of our game. Summer football; trust me, it is the answer.

But that is a debate for another day.

For now there is the prospect of six weeks of indecision, no-one really sure of what happens next at the top, at the bottom - and for one week only - in the middle.

And that's good. Football shouldn't be predictable, it is sport and it should depend on the bounce of the ball and moments of precious inspiration. It's about blood, sweat and tears and it should rip at your emotions.

And believe me, for the fans of 11 SPL teams it will.

Meanwhile, if you follow Hibs or Motherwell, get yourself a good book.


or register to comment.

More from this blog...

Topical posts on this blog


These are some of the popular topics this blog covers.

    Latest contributors

    BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

    This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.