Saturday, June 10, 2006

Aye, right....UEFA in Cuckoo land again!

Rangers told to axe 'Billy Boys' (or should that be chib? - ed)

Rangers fans fly their flags in Villarreal
All parties are united in a bid to silence the minority that continue to tarnish the reputation of Rangers Football Club
Rangers statement

Rangers have been ordered to make a public announcement at all of their home games prohibiting the chanting of the song "Billy Boys".

The instruction comes from Uefa as one of a number of directives aimed at stamping out sectarianism.

Rangers were fined £13,000 for the sectarian behaviour of their fans at a recent Champions League match against Villareal - see pic.

And Rangers chairman David Murray has already met with supporters groups to make sure their fans comply.

The Rangers Assembly, fanzine and website Follow Follow and the Supporters Trust were all represented at the Murray Park meeting on Thursday evening.

Murray said: "These supporters' groups represented should be applauded for coming forward in recognition of the importance of this issue.

"I am delighted at the progress we made.

"Over the last two years, the club has strove fervently under the banner of 'Pride over Prejudice' working with the authorities to impose indefinite and lifetime bans.

"I look forward in the coming weeks to implementing some of the actions that were discussed.

"It is absolutely clear to all concerned that all supporters need to commit to silencing the minority."

The meeting followed receipt of Uefa's written grounds for fining Rangers following the tie against Villarreal.

Uefa also ordered Rangers to "anounce measurable targets in order to reduce sectarian behaviour amongst its supporters".

And it instructed the Glasgow club to prove the success of its measures through statistics communicated to the public.

Rangers have warned that their fans must comply to "avoid sanctions being imposed or expulsion from European competition altogether".

"A positive debate was held at Murray Park and all parties are united in a bid to silence the minority that continue to tarnish the reputation of Rangers Football Club," it was stated on the club website.

A joint committe has been formed between the club and supporters groups.

And a statement from the fans' bodies read: "The message now could not be clearer that the spotlight is upon the supporters and the club and it is their duty to work together to stamp out the minority who are damaging the reputations of all those connected with Rangers Football Club.

"Not only does this small minority tarnish the reputation of Rangers but of Scottish football and our society in general and hopefully anyone who is interested in Scottish football will work with us in assisting to eradicate this behaviour."

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