Rangers fans have been levelling accusations of hypocrisy at members of the Scottish press after ex-Gers striker Kris Boyd was hit with a media ban from Dundee.
The Ibrox side were resoundingly lambasted by established pundits and members of the press for revoking the press rights of Chris Sutton and Neil Lennon just under a fortnight ago.
BT Sport had wanted to use a studio at Ibrox Stadium for both ex-Celtic stars to cover the Parkhead club’s Europa League defeat to Real Betis in Spain.
Rangers have made it clear to BT Sport that professional wind-up merchant Chris Sutton isn’t welcome at Ibrox whilst Neil Lennon is undoubtedly a polarising figure in the game.
What followed was a barrage of press criticism which extended throughout the UK and took aim at Rangers, hyperbolically comparing the club’s directorate to North Korea.
There were claims Lennon was seeking legal advice whilst – via the Daily Record – BT Sport appeared to threaten Rangers with the suggestion they could move all future Europa League broadcasts to Celtic Park.
Here’s a selection of some of the best tweets from the usual suspects:
I’m not allowed to work on the Celtic game tonight from a studio at Ibrox along with Neil Lennon as Stewart Robertson the Rangers CEO says we are a security risk. Good to see Rangers ground breaking diversity and inclusion campaign ‘Everyone Anyone’ is working well…
— Chris Sutton (@chris_sutton73) September 16, 2021
— Daily Record Sport (@Record_Sport) September 18, 2021
If Chris and Neil are a security risk, what’s to stop an opposition player or coach from being in the same position? https://t.co/PbnoYKF1v7
— Michael Stewart (@mstewart_23) September 16, 2021
— Chris McLaughlin (@BBCchrismclaug) September 16, 2021
I’ve said for some time that Rangers MD Stewart Robertson’s prodigious appetite for banning writers and commentators has become quite a farce.
Ally McCoist: “We are going down a dangerous route…we turn into Beijing, we turn into Moscow.”
Are we back in 1951 with the Soviets? pic.twitter.com/ydd4snLVyb
— Graham Spiers (@GrahamSpiers) September 17, 2021
Much of the criticism continues to stem from Rangers’ approach to the press, where the club is now charging for press access.
However, what this coverage fails to recognise is the regularity with which pundits and commentators are barred at other clubs and the conversation acts as if it this behaviour is exclusive to the board at Ibrox.
Ex-Rangers striker Kris Boyd banned from Dundee for Griffiths column
One of those such pundits – ex-Rangers striker Kris Boyd – is back in the press as Dundee bar the commentator for a stinging column aimed at Celtic loanee Leigh Griffiths.
According to the Daily Record, Dundee told Sky Sports Boyd would not be granted entry into Dens Park for Rangers’ 1-0 win over the Dee due to the column.
This is after a petition was launched to ban the striker from Celtic Park last season – yes that beacon of press freedom – for smiling.
Since the news broke? Radio silence.
It appears questions of press freedom and journalistic integrity are ironically only relevant when it concerns Rangers and letting vexatious, quarrelsome media into their ground.
Refusing to co-operate with troublesome and entitled journalists is nothing new in football – just ask Sir Alex Ferguson.
Are Rangers being held to a different standard?
Whatever your view on the banning of certain journalists or pundits, that’s not really any of our concern and there are arguments for and against this at every club.
However, what has irked fans is the clear disparity in reportage between Rangers and other sides from these influential members of the Scottish press.
How can anyone take what these guys are saying seriously if they routinely apply higher or different standards to Rangers?
It’s beyond farcical and Rangers fans haven’t missed the opportunity to call out these pundits for their hypocrisy in the aftermath:
Having a wee seat while waiting for the moral crusaders who were so appalled about Sutton now rushing out to defend Kris Boyd…
— Heart & Hand Podcast (@ibroxrocks) September 27, 2021
— Just Reid (@Reid2010Reid) September 27, 2021
— David King (@DavidKing10) September 28, 2021
This is hilarious. The same people slaughtering Ramgers for refusing entry to Sutton & Lennon are congratulating Dundee for doing the same to Kris Boyd.
Holy double-standards batman. 🤣🤣🤣 https://t.co/RdaS4qjKwc
— Greg Martin 🎧 (@gregmartin1982) September 28, 2021
— Grant (@Grantmckay01) September 27, 2021
So Boyd is banned from Dundee for right speaking out… where is the nationwide outcry. Oh yeah, that’s not their agenda and doesn’t fit the narrative.
— Copland Streetwear (@coplandsw) September 28, 2021
@chris_sutton73 Thoughts on Kris Boyd being banned from Dens Park?I’m sure you’ll agree it wrong stopping someone from doing their job.
— David Scott (@DavidSc01026759) September 28, 2021
Attempts by Dundee to ban Kris Boyd from Dens Park appear to have failed, as their email confirming has ended up in the spam folder.
— Seville Calculator (@SevilleCalculat) September 28, 2021
Wonder if there’ll be the same faux outrage now Kris Boyd is banned from Dens Park? 🤷♂️🤔
— wurly (@BrianBtinternet) September 28, 2021
Not that any Rangers fan expects the situation to change – this article is merely about highlighting the difference in coverage and standards being applied to Ibrox.
We’re not going to lose any sleep over it – and I’m sure Boyd won’t either – but what this does highlight is that some voices are more high-pitched shrills rather than genuine, constructive insight.
Meanwhile, Rangers have announced details regarding vaccine passports and how they will be implemented, beginning with the weekend’s clash with Hibs.