The Hotline is fast becoming the Hola! Line as the clock ticks down towards Rangers’ Europa League Final against Eintracht Frankfurt.
Not for 19 years have so many calls arrived from Seville and you can almost smell the whiff of sangria as the party starts in southern Spain.
Andy Kirkpatrick emailed: Flew out early to sample the Seville culture. It’s magic. Hopefully Wednesday is every bit as good. I’ve got a feeling something special is brewing and not just the beers.”
Gary Stevenson, Newtonhill, couldn’t resist a dig at their rivals when he called to say: “Another beautiful day in Seville. Life couldn’t get any better, the hotel prices are extortionate but not to worry as I had a few quid on for no Celtic players to be booked again on Saturday. Paid in full. Wish you were here. Aye right! You have to earn the right to compete here.”
Eric Hay emailed: “If this Rangers team wins the Europa League it will be a bigger achievement than 72. This is a team with no recognized stars like the team of 72. They have beaten some of the best teams in Europe. What they may be about to achieve is unbelievable. Good luck Glasgow Rangers. Make Scotland proud again.”
Eddie Easson Ballingry added: “A tough week for Rangers with two cup finals. They should get some silverware. It is now their time. Celtic are in the Champions League group stage with the added riches that it brings. Rangers could join them and what an achievement for Scottish football that would be.”
And Alan McGaw, Alloa, said: “The league season finishes with the Rangers B team beating Hearts and now it’s onto the most important week of the campaign with two cup finals. You’ve got to feel confident of winning the Europa Cup then let the Scottish Cup take care of itself. Let’s go Rangers!”
It’s not just Rangers in a celebratory mood. Celtic have just lifted the title.
And Paul McCormackCoatbridge called to say: “Congratulations Celtic and Ange Postecoglou. A remarkable achievement given the situation he inherited, the star players wanting to leave and the distance between us and Rangers last season. Ange has performed a miracle this season, and has brought every member of that squad on board with his philosophies from him. Exciting times ahead for Celtic fans. ‘We never stop’ .. winning that is.”
All positive so far. But then things began to get messy.
Paul Price, Belfast, said: “All these Rangers fans mocking Celtic’s European record have short memories. I had the privilege of being at Celtic Park when we beat Barcelona twice, Man United and AC Milan amongst others. Teams who had household names like Ronaldinhio, Messi, Ronaldo and Maldini and teams who were champions of their country. This isn’t sour grapes or anything – just plain fact.”
Hugh GallagherGlasgow had a message for Hotline regular Lance Little. He said: “In reply to Lance’s nonsense about celebrating a title win without causing a riot and damage to property perhaps he should’ve read the Sunday Mail before contacting the Hotline – it seems there was damage to traffic lights, doors to property kicked in and Glasgow City center looked like a hurricane had hit it with mountains of rubbish everywhere. Nae bother Lance, try to get your facts right before trying to have a dig at other teams supporters.”
Dr Robert S Pender emailed: “Why don’t supporters grow up, party yes but vandalism no. Last year Rangers fans disgraced themselves now Celtic supporters damage historic structure. What a mess they left the streets in. Please party, have fun but grow up.”
Finally, worried Aberdeen fan Andrew Lamb, Fraserburgh, said: “I’ll start by congratulating both Celtic and Rangers for their achievements this season, then add that the pressure is now firmly on Dave Cormack and Jim Goodwin. My worry is that we won’t see Ramirez again, and both Ferguson and young Ramsey will leave. Here’s hoping their replacements are top notch.”
And Hugh McKirdy emailed: “Big hand to Dave Cormack for the pulsating football we were promised this season ending 0-0 with St Mirren.”
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.