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Football without fans is nothing

23 December 2023

So much has happened this season so. We celebrated 25 years of St. Margaret’s CSC and the impact our supporters club has had in our area for Celtic fans wanting to watch Celtic in the flesh.

The friendships made, the highs and lows of following Celtic and the success Celtic have had in that time since the first bus left the village of Duleek bound for Glasgow.

The late great Jock Stein said, “Football without fans is nothing” and for many Celtic fans, supporters’ clubs are the life blood of their Celtic matchday experience. It is there for encouraging to see the Green Brigade return after been banned from the North Curve and the Bhoys also returning to their section after it was disassembled in the corner of the Jock Stein stand when they walked out in solidarity in support of  the North Curve.

Celtic’s Ultra groups have always split the Celtic fanbase. Some fans love them, and some fans don’t but I think we can all admit the atmosphere is not the same without them.

I applaud all Celtic fans for their stance on what is happening in Gaza to innocent Palestinian people, highlighting the injustice and for showing solidarity and support.

The Celtic board may control the purse strings of the club, but they will never control the hearts and minds of the Celtic Fan base. Thankfully the Ultras and club had talks to iron out the problems and now we see both Ultra groups returning to the stadium to create the atmosphere and colour that they bring to the Celtic Park.

Against Motherwell the Ultras turned up to welcome the team on Paradise Way in front of the stadium. A middle finger from celebrity Celtic fan, Rod Steward to the groups signalled what side of the fence he sits on. While Rod was enjoying his hospitality at his table, the Ultras made their way back to CSA to watch the match and the corteo will leave there CSA base for their return v Livingston.

In the absence of the Ultra’s in recent games some Celtic fans did try to give the team a lift vocally on occasions but without the Ultra choir leaders, megaphones and drums beating, the atmosphere can be flat just like Celtic’s performance on the pitch recently in the SPFL.

Andrew Milne is Editor of More than 90 Minutes and the host of the Celtic Soul Podcast