Nacho Novo is a modern day Rangers legend. The Spaniard won six trophies in his time at Ibrox, and Novo’s name has rightly took its place in the Rangers hall of fame.
The Spaniard arrived at Ibrox in 2004, and very quickly he found a place in the fans’ hearts, and they found a place in his. Novo went on to become a magic player for the Gers, with Novo’s name fondly remembered in the blue part of Glasgow.
The Spaniard created many memorable moments in Govan, and has become an adopted Gers fan since his time at Ibrox. Novo’s loyalties lie firmly with Steven Gerrard’s men, willing to call out any injustices that may affect his beloved Rangers.
“There is mafia in the SFA” and Celtic bias
Novo didn’t mince his words with his thoughts on the governing body in Scottish football, holding strong opinions about what goes on at the SFA. Whilst Novo has been ‘very impressed’ with the way Gerrard and his men have played this season, he has been less pleased with how the SFA have been operating this term.
Novo believes there is bias towards Celtic in the SFA and in the media.
“For me personally, there is mafia in the SFA, in terms of they are ran by Celtic. The newspapers are exactly the same and that’s obvious. You can see it from a mile away,” Novo told Rangers News.
“That’s how I see it. Look at Alan McGregor’s tackle on Lewis Ferguson. Now if you look at Scott Brown’s challenge on Daniel Candeias, that’s worse. It’s a straight red, yet Brown doesn’t even get a booking. If he was took to a panel they would still say no.
“It’s just these stupid things. If it’s one rule for one team, then that should be the rule for others as well. You can’t keep Celtic directors or Rangers directors on the SFA panel. If people aren’t going to stop them, we aren’t going to go forward, we’ll be going backwards. It will affect the young players.”
The press contribute to sectarian problem
Dark issues took the headlines from Alfredo Morelos’ four goal haul against Kilmarnock on Wednesday night. The sectarian comments made by sections of the Rangers support towards Killie boss Steve Clarke were disgraceful, and this type of behaviour should be condemned nationwide.
Novo believes the country will struggle to make any prominent changes, and reflected on his own personal experience with the abuse he received from Celtic fans because of his affiliation with Rangers.
Novo said: ” It’s just never going to change. Even when I left Rangers I was still getting abuse, I had people telling me to die in my sleep. It’s just so stupid. With Celtic fans it was more than just a few, but in all I just don’t get it.
“I’m just not going to listen. To me I’m used to it now, it’s never going to change. It’s coming from here and there. I never found it too important to go to the press and say look at what the Celtic fans did to me. I’m just quiet, in one ear out the other.”
Whilst there are several issues within this topic, the Spaniard believes the mainstream media perhaps give the subject too much exposure. Novo believes the media have to be careful in the way they report the topic.
“I think people have to stop putting morbid stuff out in the press, because that is very confrontational, that’s what I think. They contribute to it, 100%. At the same time, you see when a Celtic player has a problem, the papers put it out. If a Rangers player gets abuse, they put out anything.”
“The wee man”
Novo’s heroics have become well know around Ibrox. He really knew what it meant to play for the club, and the fans adored him for that. Novo’s commitment was great, his footballing ability was even better. The Spaniard has the perfect blend of these characteristics, which have allowed him to become a Rangers hero.
The Spaniard hopes the club and its fans can remember who he was as a person, as well as a footballer.
When asked how he’d like to be remembered, Novo said: “As the wee man!
“No, just as an honest genuine guy. I’ve never been arrogant and everything that I say is the truth, everything I think is what I’m actually thinking, whether that be football or whatever. I’d like to be known as an honest player.”