Graham Spiers

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Graham Spiers is a Scottish sports journalist who wrote for the Scottish edition of The Times newspaper between 2007 and 2011. He has won Scotland's Sports Journalist of the Year award four times.[1]

Spiers attended the University of St Andrews.[2] He previously worked as chief sportswriter at The Herald from 2001 to 2007. He was a regular pundit on the Scottish television football highlights show Scotsport, shown on STV, before the show ended in November 2007. He also appears frequently on Clyde 1's football show Super ScoreBoard, and Setanta Sports' Press Box.

He was brought up as a Rangers fan,[3] but has been a prominent critic of Rangers club leadership and supporters, highlighting many incidents of racism and sectarianism.[2][4][5][6]

I have always happily ignored one of the traditional and cowardly rules of Scottish sports journalism - the rule which says, always apportion equal blame to Celtic and Rangers when talking of bigotry - by pointing a much bigger finger of blame at Rangers, the club I grew up supporting.[7]

In September 2008, Spiers wrote "For years now Celtic Park – unlike Ibrox – has been largely free of sectarian or racist chanting."[8] In the aftermath of the 2008 UEFA Cup Final riots Spiers called Rangers "a club with poison at its core."[9] In June 2013 Spiers expressed his own view that the Rangers club which reformed in the lower divisions after the original club's 2012 liquidation was a new club rather than a direct continuation of the liquidated club.[10]

In 2007, Random House published his book, L'Enigma - A Chronicle of Trauma and Turmoil at Rangers (ISBN 1-84596-291-5) on Paul Le Guen's short tenure as the manager of Rangers.[2] In the same year he also contributed a chapter to the book It's Rangers for me? [3]

Spiers was sacked as a columnist from The Herald in January 2016. This was after Spiers wrote criticising Rangers stance on sectarianism. Spiers wrote an article alleging that an unnamed Rangers director praised "The Billy Boys", a sectarian song. The Herald were asked to back up these claims, but Spiers failed to provide a source. Columnist Angela Haggerty of The Herald's sister paper, The Sunday Herald, was also sacked after she supported Spiers on Twitter.[11][12][13][14][15]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Graham Spiers biography at Random House". Randomhouse.co.uk. Retrieved 2 March 2010. 
  2. ^ a b c Brian Viner: Brave prophet spreads the word against Rangers' bile The Independent, 4 August 2007
  3. ^ a b Spiers, Graham (2007). "From turnstile to press box". It's Rangers for me?. Glasgow: Fort Publishing. p. 63. ISBN 978-1-905769-10-0. And, amid it all, the team I loved was Rangers. 
  4. ^ Peter Millward (December 2009). International Review for the Sociology of Sport. Sage. 44 (4): 384 http://irs.sagepub.com/content/44/4/381.abstract. Retrieved 23 August 2010. Scottish journalist Spiers [...] fiercely suggests that all negative headlines connected to poor fan behaviour are the result of a sizeable minority fans regularly acting in anti-social ways.  Missing or empty |title= (help); |chapter= ignored (help)
  5. ^ Greenslade, Roy (1 March 2011). "Scottish press stays silent as Rangers fans sing sectarian songs". The Guardian. Retrieved 1 May 2011. 
  6. ^ Maguire, Tim (Spring 2011). "LOOK: It's behind you!". Humanitie: 15. Retrieved 1 May 2011. 
  7. ^ The Alternative History of Celtic and Rangers. ep2 BBC Scotland, 9 August 2010
  8. ^ Time for Martin Bain to speak out about the sectarian chants of Rangers’ fans
  9. ^ A club with a poison at its core
  10. ^ Spiers on Sport: Rangers, new club or old, and the BBC The Herald, 19 June 2013
  11. ^ https://www.theguardian.com/media/greenslade/2016/jan/29/two-columnists-depart-from-glasgow-herald-in-row-with-rangers
  12. ^ https://www.theguardian.com/media/greenslade/2016/feb/01/why-the-heralds-editor-fired-a-columnist-in-row-with-rangers
  13. ^ http://www.pressgazette.co.uk/sunday-herald-columnist-sacked-backing-journalist-who-questioned-rangers-mettle-stop-offensive
  14. ^ http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-glasgow-west-35439391
  15. ^ http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/two-columnists-glasgow-herald-lose-jobs-after-rangers-fc-board-billy-boys-song-row-1540909

External links[edit]