No one expects the Sevco Inquistion!

I have spent a fascinating morning in lovely company dandering around old Lisbon.

My gracious guides, one Portuguese and one Spanish, reminded me of the dark history of the city.

I have been visiting Rossio Square for years, but I’ve never had someone impart local knowledge to me.

500 years ago it was execution central for those lovely guys in the Inquisition.

The victims of that Kafkaesque performance art were sentenced in Sao Domingo Church and marched out to the square.

Often the victims were Jewish.


In the 20th century some atheist type burned the church to the ground and  in restoring the roof it was felt appropriate to leave the fire damage  as a memorial to many who died by fire in the square.


The Iberian Inquisition caused the best and brightest to leave the Portugal and Spain forever.

This part of Europe lost so many of their intellectuals thanks to this religious insanity.

When the great earthquake of 1755 destroyed the city only Cais do Sodre was spared.

Ironically this was Lisbon’s notorious Red Light area.

The hero of the hour, the Marquis do Pombal decided it was time for the Jesuits and their religious buddies to GTF.

It was the start of modern Portugal.

It reminded me that these are the good old day in Europe.

People have rights here and the freedom to be themselves.

I was here at the web summit wearing the NUJ jersey.

A free press is essential to a functioning democracy.

I noticed in the stenography press that Monsieur Joey is now a bad guy.


He signed a contract and he honoured it.

Then his employers wanted rid of him for mainly financial reasons.

Thankfully he was well-represented.

I noticed that ,as he is now an ex-Sevco player, he can be described as a “violent ex-offender”.

That is a description that would never have been attached to him if he had been bossing the midfield for the Engine Room Subsidiary.

If there is an intrepid stenographer out there who wasn’t to experience journalism then I have a free tip:

Contact the Scottish Football association and the FA in England.

Ask them if they were contacted by representatives of Mr Barton?

Ask both associations if they have guaranteed Joey’s pay off?

Ask the FA if there is a mechanism in place for them to contact the SFA in the event of non-payment?

Ask the SFA will they move against any monies owing to TRFC in that event and hold them for then French-speaking midfielder?

There, you have a story there.

Not Off The Radar pish, but a real story.

Now you go and stand it up.

I’m going for lunch with my hosts now and we will discuss how to make May 25th next year a bit special in the amazing city.

My companions run a tour guiding business and the owner is a footie fanatic.

He gets it,the whole Celtic connection to Lisbon, and he wants to put something on for Hooped pilgrims next year.

Developing story…


57 thoughts on “No one expects the Sevco Inquistion!

  1. Mr Mah Jest Stick

    I’ve read some funny stuff in my time but this has to beat the lot, for its brazen unwitting irony alone.

    After I’d stopped laughing hysterically at the headline for 15 minutes, I thought I’d give it a go, despite the risk of busting my spleen again.

    And, feck, was it more than worth it, because what Alex is here proposing is a blatant demand for help in establishing a Sevco-led order in our national game, but he not-very-cleverly disguises it in the language of ‘WHAT IS BEST FOR SCOTTISH FOOTBALL!’ as a whole, in a manner not too unlike the way Regan et al phrased it at the time of Rangers’ demise and death, and at the subsequent messy birth of that club’s bastard offspring.

    For example:

    ‘ALEX SMITH wants Scotland’s major clubs ( and Sevco) to take over lower-league sides and use them as feeder outfits in a radical proposal to help develop our country’s (Sevco’s) youngsters (and Sevco’s future prospects.)

    Scottish football’s godfather (Haha!) and Falkirk technical director ( …) insists a solution must be found to help produce talent that can help the nation (Sevco) get back onto the major stage.

    The idea of the Old Firm (Yes!) fielding Colt sides in the lower leagues has been discussed before with the SFA also considering a proposal for an NFL-style draft system as part of a major shake-up. (Which will largely benefit Sevco.)

    It is aimed at getting (Sevco’s) kids more competitive football and Smith’s idea takes it a step further by claiming Rangers(*) and Celtic and the rest (ALL the rest, Alex ..? Where would we stop?!) of the top clubs could buy out the likes of Airdrie and Clyde as a route into the lower leagues. (…)

    He believes it would help their (Sevco’s) top talent develop by playing in tougher leagues in front of bigger crowds (Where?!) before returning to their parent clubs (Sevco) ready for top level action.’

    (For Sevco.)

    Now I understand that being a ‘godfather’ gives you a wee bit of leeway in your SFA-enabling ramblings but this kind of backward doublespeak takes the bloody biscuit for sheer hubris and entitlement and is fooling no one with its jiggery pokery and ‘secret’ messages.

    It’s like these guys are talking to us from a mad Sevco-themed merry-go-round that just never stops, round and round they go on the shameless lunatic Sevco-go-round, denial denial denial in the face of a glaring truth, haunted to their souls by the agonising knowledge gnawing away at them that their old Rangers really is no more and all they have left is this absolute joke and embarrassment that the howling lunatic Sevco thing is still squirming and wriggling at their core.

    This runtish new ‘club’ is the proud King’s son who gets locked in the castle’s turret, the one whose frailties and deformities are so hideous that they’re covered by an iron mask.

    And the mainstream lie is the iron mask.

    (Ha! I knew there was another meaning to that book …)

    But where does the compulsion to live this lie come from ?

    Is it a collective mass consciousness thing, where everyone immediately and instinctively reacts to a great loss in exactly the same way, which is, in this case, by, er, denying it ..?

    A staunch stony face at the funeral and the absolute refusal to admit it’s dead and long gone, and for good, even years later ..?

    Is it believed that by automatic repetition that the monster Dr Frankenstein would be ashamed of REALLY IS ‘Rangers’ that some day, in the not too distant La La Land, it will actually BECOME Rangers, and in yer actual ‘real world’ tae ..?

    Or do they gather together in meetings each week where the idea is constantly drummed into them that, despite what their hearts, their heads and all their worldly senses and emotions tell them, The Great Lie MUST prevail, and, ‘for the greater good’, WILL become ‘a’ truth, if not exactly ‘the’ truth …?

    Whichever one it is, it’s one weird way to live your life.

  2. Mick

    Wee note to the Clumpany if you’re looking in. In Texas Hold ’em it is improbable but not impossible that 4 As will lose to a Royal flush.

  3. Sammy

    Barton is away back to Barnsley with a flea in his rear and a few shillings max……you ‘re storeys remind me off Hands Chrisian Anderson….fables…..
    .this time next year European football beckons…55 and staying alive!

    1. DhenBhoy

      “You’re” spelling of your indicates the reason you are so gullible and buy into the Level 5 pish that is doled out to appease the bears. Tragic.

    2. Pat Nevins' Barnet

      Awww ! There, there, Sammy!

      Can I suggest easing your pain with a course of spelling and grammar lessons – to be washed down with a couple of spoons of Lawell’s ‘anti-delusion tonic’! It works wonders.

      55 points is a realistic target though. It must help to have an aim in life no matter how modest.

  4. joe mccormack

    Phil, I have not seen, or heard, a single mention in the Scottish media with regards to the story carried in the Guardian last week about the involvement of Frank McParland and Sammy Lee in the transfer of Gavin McCann back in the day when McParland was General Manager at Bolton.
    Lee and McParland had appealed against a previous judgement that they had lied under oath when giving evidence about the transfer. The judgement was upheld in the appeal case last week. Lee and McParland had perjured themselves.
    I believe the CPS is reviewing the case.
    Both had lied about the date of a contract being signed in an attempt to prevent an agent picking up the £200k he was due for his part in the deal. Oh the murky waters of football transfers.
    Lee will be shown the door this week by England following on the heels of Big Sam ‘ s bung sting.
    How will the Rangers executive view McParland ‘ s part in the affair ……..will it be worthy of a suspension pending further investigation?
    I think we all know what the front page headline would have been if it had been the Celtic Chief Scout.
    This is a great story but not worth a line in the Scottish media…..just underlines the hold Level 5 has and confirms that corruption doesn’t stop at Gretna Green.

    Shame on you MSSM.

  5. Iain Doherty

    The attachment of historical blame seems to be fashionable. There is not any organisation or individual be it governmental, religious or political that hasn’t committed atrocities. Religious or Atheist, Left or Right politically. The problem seems to be many would rather be right than do right. This applies to everyone , every race, every religion, every non religion. The moment people accept the frailties of humanity is the time to move forward.

    1. The beekeeper

      Not according to Phil (good guy that he is but in a certain denial mode l when it comes to historical bad deeds)
      everything that ever bad happened was done according to Phil by the big bad Catholic church, no blame anywhere else, and while in those days bad things did happen, and lets remember that the politics of the day was first and foremost what drove these tragic happenings, nothing then compares to what went on last century under the atheist big guys like Stalin, Mao, pol pot, and the no 1 most hated despot Adolf Hitler who although born into a catholic family, could never be described as a Christian and was, with his buddys a follower of pagan rituals, and lets not forget to mention that the Catholic church which does more for charity and good works than any atheist group ever did, is still after 2000 years still going strong, I dont know any other institution that can say that, Yep its easy to attack Catholicism and Christianity in general, after all we wont put a contract out on you to get you beheaded, or execute you for your atheist or religious beliefs, or indeed persecute you and force you to leave your homeland, Cant really say that about other faiths or non believers elsewhere, that never get commented on by Phil.
      Final point,anyone who follows the teachings of Christ, would never do anyone any harm or wrong unfortunately, human beings very seldom achieve the standards of Our Lord, but we should always keep trying.

  6. John

    I don’t particularly like contradicting people , But Mr Brophy I don’t know what you have based this assertion upon. The initial intention of the inquisition was to discover heretics. That being subsequent to the pogroms against the Jews and their subsequent banishment . many Jews rather than uproot their family ,trade ,and home converted to Roman Catholicism. After the fall off Grenada this also happened to the Muslims , many of whom decided to convert as the Jews had done. The inquisition was set up to root out those that had not left , together with those that had converted but were insincere in their conversion. This ran for hundreds of years. the twist to this perversion was that any Jew ,Muslim ,or anyone else that was put to the question and was found to be a heretic had all their goods seized by the crown , with a percentage going to the Holy Order and Rome. This proved so lucrative that the practise was exported to the New World , I doubt there were many Jews or Muslims there, however what there was the native populations , that under the supposed quise of the Inquisition were killed off in their tens of thousands ,so unless they don’t count your assertion is way off the mark, with respect. This of course is a very abridged and simplified version of this period. As a practising Roman Catholic it gives me no pleasure to post this , but it is a fact , and it happened along with many other shameful events throughout history , that are attributable to Roman Catholicism. Ironically, perhaps one of the greatest heretics of them all , largely brought about the end of the inquisition once and for all , in the shape of Napoleon Bonaparte.

    1. Cortes


      The bulk of victims of European arrivals among Amerindian populations controlled by Spanish conquests died from diseases to which they had zero immunity. Don’t trust me. Use a search engine and look up Guns, Germs and Steel. Then read it.

      The main problem was smallpox which facilitated conquest of both the Aztec and Inca empires.

      Brutality existed, but no need for the hairshirt.

      1. david

        Pardon did you say hairshirt or bullshirt, you obviously don’t have a clue what your shirting about , all over the Americas every sect of Christianity deliberately infected native populations with diseases that they knew would kill them off including small pox , influenza and measles . why would they do that because they wanted the land and it was an excused to rid the world of the enemies of Christ, the prophet of peace in Islam , the crimes done in his name just by popes who where made saints , make the obscenities of isis seem to be that of rank amateurs who are messing about . the attitude that oops we didn’t mean it I’m sorry makes me sick.

        1. bennybhoy

          I think you will find that natives all over the world are treated as savages and were either subjugated or destroyed. There were some well meaning missionaries and with all good intentions tried to save them through Christianity. But that meant the natives ditching their family,language, rituals and way of life. The Spanish and Portuguese ( conquistadors )searching for riches initially. Britain wanted the land and France in North America wanted animal skins, fur and feathers for their fashion houses in Paris. What happened to the natives was inevitable, how it happened was unforgivable. Look up manifest destiny for North America.A mixture of disease, arms, broken promises and treaties. Also reference Thanksgiving Day. On how the natives saved the lives of Europeans arriving in the new world.showed them how to live off the land and plant crops. Less than a decade later the immigrant Europeans wanted the lot.didn’t end well for the tribes.

  7. bennybhoy67

    to celebrate my 60th birthday on 25th may was planing Vegas for the Celtic convention.
    now a pilgrimage to Lisbon with the family it is.
    Raise a glass in memory of my Dad and my uncles who carried their wee lucky charm (me) from house to house in great jubilation
    what a great 10th birthday,all lowly paid coal miners, I know they would have loved to be able to take their family to the final.

    Hail Hail Phil..thanks for the heads up.

  8. Rob O'Keeffe

    Talking about Lisbon and Hampden anniversaries brilliant.Please desist from talk of the Dark Side!! So boring.Let’s enjoy Glasgow being Green and White.YNWA

  9. Bigtam1901

    Really sorry but I thought the Tom English colum to be very enlightening and really fair on all concerned,
    Highlighting the brat that agent barton is, the problems of being a manager,
    And how much of a class act broony is

  10. tecumseh

    Should the brightest and best hooped pilgrims slaughter a lamb in the stadium of Light….or would it be easier to go to mass in the nearest church…….if they go to mass then they are none too bright and certainly not the best…right…??….or as one of my Scottish uncles used to kid…..they’d be a bunch of thick Irish Micks….right…??

  11. speyside lhad

    i’m also planning Lisbon next year as my sons birthday is 25th May.

    to stand in the stadium that day side by side and sing ‘Champions 67’ would be a wonderful moment for us both

  12. adrian

    Phil, a small donation. I’d donate more regularly but finances are tough. Delighted to pass it on when fortune comes my way!

    My politics are on the other side of the spectrum from you on EU and Trump (great year 🙂 )but love your site.
    Vive la difference as Joey might tweet 😉

  13. Son of Henry Root

    I have disagreed previously with others on this site as to how Tom English should now be viewed.

    For a number of years, I was in awe of his style, incisive, cutting, probing style of journalism. His award winning book “The Grudge” remains one of rugby’s most iconic and deep book on rugby, focussing on one match only in 1990 between Scotland and England. It was, and will remain. a sporting masterpiece.

    But yesterday, this is how he attempted to capture all things Joey Barton, painting a picture of a club that did its best to control a player who lost the plot….sorry, Tom, you have let us down. And you know it, which irks even more.

    1. Rumpole of the Bailey

      It’s his attempt at social intelligence, if you will. Trying to fit in. No need to alienate himself. No need to be a fool unto himself.

      Honesty and Integrity don’t pay the bills in Scotland.

      This stuff puts bread on his table. He keeps a job. When we’re all shuffled off, historians will quote his work as ‘balanced at the time’.

      It’s a post truth world and sports Hacks have been blazing the trail for decades.

        1. Lamb Beggars

          And all the rest of the British mainstream media too.

          The biggest sporting scandal of our times and not a word on it from any of them, it’s beyond all righteous disbelief.

          And Tom English is just doing what they’ve all been doing for nearly a decade, covering his own ass to stay in a job, but there’s still no excuse for it.

          The clandestine breadth and depth of this story should be handed to someone with the pedigree and clout of John Pilger or Chris Hedges, two of the last great journalists still standing, or perhaps even Professor Chomsky himself, as an example of how total media collusion works in the suppression.

          And The Guardian has the cheek to ask folk for money to support a ‘fee, independent media’ when that fine old paper has been in the hands of the Zionists since 2010!

          They must think we’re all as deaf, dumb and blind as their own paid lackeys, or that we’re so indoctrinated we’ve lost our innate capacity for critical thinking.

          Although, when I look around me, I realise they might be right …

          Sad days for the truth now, alright.

    2. Bevster

      Totally agree
      If Joey is wilting then its only under the weight of cash he’s carrying.
      Embarrassing from Tom English and the BBC

    3. eldiplomato

      Just because a writer or journalist writes something you disagree with, is that enough to change your views on his ability or what he produces generally? I would say that English along with Speirs and Cosgrove,say as they see it, and in essence contribute from BBC Scotland fairer than anyone else in Scotland.

      1. Meeja Lackey More

        Yes, it most certainly IS enough to change my views when he clearly knows the true facts of the story yet writes this rubbish.

        His embarrassment is oozing from every word, and the last few paragraphs are so painful in their attempted summation that you can practically feel his editor’s breath on his neck.

        If you don’t realise that the entire mainstream British media has been corrupted after reading this nonsense then there’s not much anyone can add that will help you.

        And Tom English damn well knows it.

        1. Son of Henry Root

          Here are two articles 18 and 30 months old from Tom.

          Are they really written by the same man or what has broken him, or more likely, forced him to play a quieter tune?

          Or not one at all?

          He highlighted what Phil and others have long said…is Dave King crusader or a charlatan?

          Little has changed at Rangers since Tom’s articles….except Tom. And that is what disappoints me.

          He knew there was a smoking gun from the off when King Dave arrived…he just failed to fire those bullets, leaving Phil and other ‘internet bampots’ to do HIS job.

          Threats, fear, menace? Something has changed him and Scottish media is all the poorer that he cannot/will not explore what is really happening at Rangers.

          1. History Tells

            The entire Western media has been corrupted and I find it astonishing that so few people have noticed it.

            It has always had the potential to be used in the suppression, or sensationalized publication, of certain stories, (eg, Joey, Rangers/Sevco) but the fact that only 4 corporations now own 96% of the western media should tell you something about its monopolization.

            (Congrats with 1980, when 34 different companies reported on the US market alone.)

            Luckily, or not, I was raised to be skeptical, if not outright critical, of anything in the public eye, because the collective histories of Scotland Ireland had taught my forebears, through hard, painful experience, not to trust a word that came out of anyone in authorities’ mouths.

            But at least back then the media made the effort to convince people they could be trusted …

            Nowadays they’re practically rubbing our noses in their game, mocking us for still believing that they are reliable, trustworthy or impartial in any way whatsoever.

            When I open The Guardian these days I can barely tell the difference between it and the Daily Mail.

            As John Pilger said in his scathing attack on the former earlier this year *, that paper is even more culpable, and guilty of an even greater deception of its readers for its continuing pretence at being the same paper it ever was, when, in truth, it was taken over by the corporate Trinity Mirror giant in 2010, thereby replacing the old editorial board with a gang of hawkish, manipulative Zionists.

            I only discovered this fact quite recently, although i had noticed their change in tone from around 2012, as it grew gradually more collusive in the lead up to the Scottish referendum, and particularly their lies around global corporate policy regarding the ongoing war crimes across the world.

            As far as ‘The Truth’ goes in the media now, it really is a case of ‘Don’t mention the war.’

            But it’s far from feckin funny.

          2. Mr Mah Jest Stick

            100% spot on, HT.

            The only thing is, they DO mention the wars, but they don’t tell us who’s profiting from them, probably because it’s the same people who own the war machine that also owns the media.

            A fine trick, if you know how to do it, and these guys have been doing it for centuries.

            It’s also the final nail in the coffin of the old, dead, capitalist order.

            Cos what’s a game of Monopoly if you don’t take every piece on the board ..?

  14. joe mccormack

    Great stuff Phil…..had a long weekend in Lisbon last year, hope to be back next May with thousands of others gathering to celebrate the greatest achievement in the history of Scottish football, which will never be surpassed.
    Not to forget that 2017 is also the 60th anniversary of ‘Hampden In The Sun.’

    If Brendan delivers the treble that will indeed be the icing on the cake.

  15. JT

    If I am still around in May of next year
    I would be up for a soiree in Lisbon as will
    a good number of your readers, so keep us
    posted on what your tour guiding companions can organise.
    Seville all over again perhaps!!!!

    PS. I would buy some shares in their Tour Guiding Company
    pretty quick, if I were you. Next May could see their business rocket!

  16. Andrew Brophy

    Just a point.

    There were more people killed in the Irish Civil War than by the Spanish Inquisition.throughout its existence.

  17. mikewr

    Heard Mr ewan murray of the guardian repeat on the football weekly podcast this morning that barton had received a “fraction” of his contract to go away.
    Lamb level of journalism from murray.

    1. SamBrowneBelt

      Saying “a fraction” means nothing; 1/10th is a fraction, so is 9/10ths. So, for that matter is 10/10ths. As usual, Ewan Murray talks meaningless p*sh.

    2. Salted Popcorn

      Sevco say they have terminated Mr Barton’s contract and paid him 250k by way of compensation. This is probably true and gives them something to tell the fans – they are not happy but they think they got off lightly. But they are silent about possible future payments that may also be part of the package – they have certainly not said there will be no more payments.

      1. Southern Bhoy

        A case of not telling any lies but not telling the whole truth either. Classic tactic in how to mislead by controlling information.


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