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Should we celebrate Rangers' Day?

Manchester experienced a great sporting exodus on this day in 2008 and Confidential wants it back, but do you?

Published on May 14th 2009.

Should we celebrate Rangers' Day?
Yes: - 35%
No: - 65%

This time last year the streets of Manchester were paved with blue. This brave city played host to around 170,000 Rangers football fans as they gathered for the UEFA Cup Final against Zenit St Petersburg. Remember it? The chaos, the noise, the atmosphere, the pish, the booze, the mess, the palpable excitement, the electricity; it was all part of the mayhem and madness that was Rangers' Day.

It was certainly a shock to the system for many city centre workers who dodged urine rivers and drunken Scots, although those who got to go home early weren't complaining. And despite negative reports of the day, the number of arrests made were in fact very low.

As a great city, we are fully capable of managing popular events such as screened football matches in the heart of the city and we have to demonstrate we can manage such events in the future. As Sir Richard Leese said at the time: “Should Manchester bid for major finals in future?” He paused and then said: “Yes, of course, we will bid again to hold major sporting events and finals. You cannot blame the preparations for the behaviour of a small number of people.”

Wednesday 14 May 2008 was an exceptional day, of the kind that may never happen again. But here at Confidential, we want it to. Let's have more public celebrations in the city centre. Hands up who wants to celebrate and commemorate Rangers' Day: May 14? Vote on the homepage.

The Aftermath

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106 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

BeeMay 14th 2009.

It was an amazing day! Even though i was working i had a big smile on my face - the atmosphere was fab! The mess and the violence etc wasn't on at all but it's to be expected with football yobs.

emma graceMay 14th 2009.

You might think it was a success and something to look back on with pride Mancon, but I think a lot of Manchester residents and workers will disagree. There were stories of people being threatened and insulted while they were walking round town, (a number whom were my friends), I personally couldn't walk home after work that evening because I didn't feel safe, and I stopped counting the blokes I saw p1ssing in the street when I got past 15. They acted like complete animals and showed no respect whatsoever for the city, and it's residents. I really don't see what it is you want to commemorate?

BeeMay 14th 2009.

Oh dear. That's a shame EG. Not what you need after work at all. I was fortunate to experience nothing more than some pervy comments in the afternoon so that's why i remember it in a more positive way. Having said that, i wouldn't want it repeated because of all the negative things that happened - too many to gloss over even with my rosy coloured spectacles!

CastlefieldMay 14th 2009.

I cannot believe this article, honestly. I don't want a slanging match but this is out of line. Me and my husband had to come to the aid of a Russian supporter who had been seriously assaulted outside our apartment, two members of my female staff were also assaulted, they were terrified - in tears. My staff couldn't get home as Rangers fans had decided to block the buses, we couldn't get them taxis as no taxi drivers would enter the city, we had to take them home personally - a good job we could! The Russian guy we helped was sat at the side of the road with a head injury, still being kicked by Rangers supporters with Buck Fast in hand.I am sure there were a lot of good natured Rangers fans, but from my experience and that of friends and colleagues, we don't want them back. It is a suprise someone wasn't killed, but several were injured like the Russian guy. What a thing to want to celebrate!I disagree that all football supporters are yobs, there no problems like this when the Milans played in the Euro final or when any teams come to play United. I was at the last World Cup and again no problems on this scale.I'm sorry but the majority of Rangers supporters were small minded idiots who had no idea where they were by lunchtime. What do you suggest to celebrate, we all go out on the streets and piss?If you want to do shock jock journalism, do it better.

Loved itMay 14th 2009.

Absolutely loved it.

CastlefieldMay 14th 2009.

I know what you're saying East Lances, but getting rather heated and what happened with the Rangers fans is a whole different ball game (excuse the pun!).I don't think the Roma supporters were harassing people on the streets or in bars, they just shouted at and ran, handbag style, at police outside OT, it kicked off with them and police when they were going in the store and trying to nick footballs!Nothing on this scale!

CastlefieldMay 14th 2009.

sorry, meant East Lancs!

Andyj18May 14th 2009.

To persist with this 'what a lovely day out it was' delusion is nonsensical - the whole thing was a complete disaster that left the city stinking for a fortnight. Of course Manchester should bid to host major finals and events - but what it should never, ever do again is allowed a stupendously naive (or just extremely ill-informed) council to invite every bigot, thug and convicted murderer (www.telegraph.co.uk/…/s-convicted-murderer.html…) who wants to wreck the place to come here and get plastered in blazing sunshine with no shade.The whole thing was ill though-out, rushed and very poorly organised. If Leese had any decency, he wouldn't have been bleating about 'don't blame the preparations' - he would have resigned.

DonaldMay 14th 2009.

As a scotsman and catholic living in Manchester I can do without the shame I felt that day for Scotland, and also having to listen constantly to them singing about 'being up to their knees in fenian blood' as I tried to get home. I don't think anyone who is proud of Manchester will forget the bitter taste that was left by the events of a year ago. Perhaps you should ask PC Mick Regan, the police officer tripped and attacked by 20 cowardly Rangers Fans in Oldham Street, if he'd like to celebrate Rangers Day.

GregMay 14th 2009.

Was this that day when that guy did a **** outside Urbis and I was too scared to walk through the Village? Ermmm, yeah go on then.

UnitedMay 14th 2009.

The problem wasn't the fans, the problem was the organised hooligans. Let's just forget about this day eh? Not one of our proudest moments Mancon...

bluregMay 14th 2009.

get over itnext!

emma graceMay 14th 2009.

Greg, it was also the day I caught about 10 of them doing lines of coke off the bins at the back of my office. Again Mancon, I ask, what's to celebrate?!?!

lucky chrisMay 14th 2009.

Talk about an article for the sake of an article! I'm all for "atmosphere", which is why I went into town to catch the end of the game at Albert Square. It. Was. Gross. Since I was born I've had a 26 year love affair with this city, so I was duely disgusted with what I saw and what I heard about afterwards. No number of photos of Scottish joviality will change that. If there's anything to celebrate, it's the end of the resulting clean-up operation. Someone remind me how much that cost again... Rangers Day indeed...

All in allMay 14th 2009.

The atmosphere throughout the day was great I thought. Yes i was disgusted by the number of people weeing right near my office, yes it was unfortunate that people felt they needed drugs to enjoy the day but I have to say walking round town in my dinner, the atmosphere was so good. It put a right smile on my face.I didn't come into town in the evening once the match had started... at that time the mood was obviously much different so i can understand those who were caught up in the actual riots disagreeing with me, but all in all i think it was a great day.

GingerSnapsMay 14th 2009.

It started out cheerfully, and then degenerated into something fairly hideous. Reminded me most of the worst excesses of marching season back home in Belfast, largely due to the sectarian chanting and bully boy swaggers that kept breaking out. The place stank, and I didn't feel safe, which I really f**king resent when walking to work. Picking my way through the rivers of pish in Piccadillay Gardens at 8am is a rank way to start the day.That said, the actual amount of genuine trouble was minmal, and a lot of the blueshirts were keen to reassure us that they were policing their own. Mismanagement of the event from a greedy council was to blame for the worst excesses. Bring on the street parties, for sure, but get your AV working, make sure there are enough toilets and don't have it in the middle of town. Or just put in everyone in a nice big field like sensible festival organisers do.

jerry the catMay 14th 2009.

Are you mad? who would want to remember that night, I must say the minority spoil it for the majority as usual, but the behaviour was totally unacceptable and Rangers should have paid for the clean up operation.

rangers manMay 14th 2009.

I thought the atmosphere was incredible all day - although of course we were all well away from the trouble. In fact I remember a rumour going around the fans where we were that there was a 'riot' in Piccaddilly Gardens, and we didn't believe it.Remember this was the largest mass movement of people in the UK since the Dunkirk landings. It was a boiling hot day and everyone was crammed into farcically small 'zones'. The organisation was incredibly naive. Why not open up a park or something? 200,000 people in a small , tight city centre in the boiling sun with free flowing booze, no toilets at all, and no bins and what else are you going to get?I went with boys from my work and met up with people once of them knew that live in Manchester who hate football. Clearly the day wouldn't have changed their minds but we all had an amazing time with the fans, chucking beach balls about and all that, and basically the day was perfect for us all. It's a day that will live long in Scottish folklore and not just for the horrible scenes of violence that were broadcast the next day.

CastlefieldMay 14th 2009.

Is it incredibly naive to come down to Manchester with no ticket, brag about it being the biggest movement of people blah blah blah and expect a city to have built a small town for you? Rangers Man it seemed great to you because you were probably pissed as a fart, which is fine, but remember that.It goes down it Scottish folklore in the same way Dresden goes down in some RAF folklore, morbidly proud of it.There is no excuse for the behaivour of an awful lot of the Rangers fans that day, they were scum.

FrexMay 14th 2009.

I was working on the top floor of Piccadilly Gardens building this time last year and though it provided too much of a distraction to do any work, that is where the good times stopped. The majority and I mean majoirty of the 20k fans on the Gardens were drinking from 9 in the morning throughout the day. Any excuse for violence and the whole place kicked off. Throwing bottles at the Russian fool who got on top of Rice! bar and ran with across with a huge flag. Of course the Rangers fans didn't realise they were just pelting other Rangers fans on the other side. The whole city smelt of wee and it was like something out of Dawn of the Dead getting into work the next day. If we ever wanted to celebrate this day the whole of Manchester would have to travel to Glasgow, fondle every female, shout at every male and urinate in every bin and on every wall in sight. The day was a shocker and although not forgotten should definitely be learnt from. Never again...

WareoniaMay 14th 2009.

It was an absolutely disgusting day. Many of my workmates (female) had to put up with being shouted at when they wouldn't flirt back at 1 point was even spat at! They came here with no respect and destroyed our city. What's next should we have an IRA day and celebrate them blowing us up? Mancon shame on you i expected more from you.

The Publisher, Mark GarnerMay 14th 2009.

Well Jonathan, you seem to have the mood of the people off to a T on this one, eh ;-)

jumpersforgoalpostsMay 14th 2009.

The riot started due to the big screens breaking down. Though theses could have been repaired in 10mins had the Rangers fans let the engineers do the repair job rather than throw bottles at them so they gave up.. cue riot.I was forced to stay in my apartment by the fuzz. The following day I walked to Piccadilly station through the rivers of p1ss. On arrival in the station a rangers fan was asleep face down in Tie-Rack.. Stunned commuters laughe, some tripped over him coffee in hand. He then asked everyone to "keep the f**king noise down" as he was trying to sleep. I still have a pic on my phone as a depressing symbol of the day the city was ransacked.. The IRA bomb at least bought about regeneration in the city.

emma graceMay 14th 2009.

I'd be interested to know how much that clean up actually cost Manchester City Council. It's sickening that we were made to feel so intimidated and threatened in our own city, and yet WE had to foot the bill for the clean-up to clean up after those cretins had tottled off home. It's hideous.

emma graceMay 14th 2009.

Sorry for the terrible grammar...this one's got me a bit fired up...!

jumpersforgoalpostsMay 14th 2009.

The 20th Commonwealth Games in 2014 will be held in Glasgow...I suggest we all remain bitter till then, down tools and head up there and take cold revenge.. P1ss in the long jump pit.. Dump in the swimming pool. that kind of thing.

BoredofitallMay 14th 2009.

Having to wade through a river of piss produced by 70 drunken fans just to get on the 42 and get home is NOT something I would like to commemorate. Never have I seen anyone show a host city such blatant disrespect. I'm a big football fan and I know that some fans, even of my own team, can be yobs and it's certainly not confined to one team. Rangers fans however?! what a bunch of C U next Tuesdays, rude, abrasive, violent and disrispectful. And thethe team also play s*** football. Enough said.

BoredofitallMay 14th 2009.

Sorry thats disrespectful....And also Rangers Man, unless you pay the council tax for this beautiful city, get lost.

Pedro1874May 14th 2009.

And some people want them to join the Premier League. A good advert for them joining - NOT!

I was thereMay 14th 2009.

Well, I thought I'd fallen into a microwormhole and slipped back/forward in time to April 1 after reading this article. I take it you're having a laugh to try and provoke us all? I went up to town with two female work colleagues. Had a quick drink in Velvet on Canal Street. Ran into the loo to have a pee. P*ssed up scottish gentleman comes in and relieves himself, almost at the urinal while at the same time letting out the smelliest, loudest, longest fart I have ever heard. Charming. And in my favourite bar.Well, really, that should have warned us but - no - intrepid explorers we were we wandered up to Piccadilly Gardens. It was like a battery henhouse filled with drunken scum. Typical comment that one of my glamorous friends received: "Show us yer gash, luv", before being rather disgustingly felt up. Obviously I lept to her defence and we fought our way out.And that was all BEFORE they decided to tear our city apart and kick seven shades of hell out of our police officers, and each other.My partner rang me about half an hour before kick off, saying: "This city is going to torn apart. And if I see one more drunk Scot p*ssing in the street I think I'm going to throw up."I was also there later that night, and it was an absolute disgrace. They were so busy fighting with each other they didn't notice the cars and buses in the roads. Their behaviour really was what lurks in the cesspit of the worst depravities of our pitiful race.I've heard of revisionism, but there's something rather significant missing from your colourful photomontage and that's the imagery of the animals deciding to riot in OUR city. Over a hunk of metal.I know you like to promote debate Mancon, but please remember that many of your users have had similar experiences to me, and many are as proud of this city as I am, and many want to forget that night and wish it had never happened, and hope it never happens again.In saying that, the city should still host events, and I don't blame the council for putting this show on. It probably would have been a great day if the team that got there was supported by people who have even the slightest inkling of how to behave in public. The few Russians we met that day were lovely, although I did see one terrified group of them later on fleeing to the safety of their hotel.Postscript: Another mate of mine was in Blackpool for the day. There were a load of Rangers fans there as well. Drunk, p*ssing in the street and too leathered to actually make it to Manchester. Nice to see they aren't discriminating in which town they want to ruin. Rant over, Mancon. Well done, you genuinely wound me up!

I was thereMay 14th 2009.

by the way, why does putting a paragraph code not work on here any more. It makes my rant look even worse than it is because there's no spacing!

burt CodeineMay 14th 2009.

7th pic down on the left - that's what happened to Pete Beale - now that's a day we should celebrate, then do away with Shrove Tuesday and call it Willmot Brown Tuesday. I like this game, it's rather good fun.

Andy SMay 14th 2009.

Well, I thought it was a fantastic day. The atmosphere was electric - even better than the Commonwealth Games, with similar weather! Admittedly, there was an overwhelming stench of human urine, which wasn't ideal, but they have to wee somewhere! Quite right Jonathan.

paulipipsMay 14th 2009.

It was a roaring success of a day for Tescum on Market St - selling crateloads of cheap beer from the front door all day long ! As long as big business and shareholders made money who gives a toss about the clean up expenses covered by the council tax payer.

DidsburyGirlMay 14th 2009.

Spawny puts it well I think, But the blame must be shared with the Fans themselves as well. Yeah, the atmosphere was great...when I was on my way to work at 10 am.....by the time I had finished at 8pm I had to be picked up by a friend as I was too scared to walk from CIS at miller st to piccadilly. Why ManCon would post this article is beyond me.

James KMay 14th 2009.

You're all a bunch of scaredy cats, yes there were problems, yes it was a mess, but as the article says it was exceptional. Exceptional days don't come to often. I thought it was exciting. Don't be afraid of life folks and don't be so bloody suburban as well.

CastlefieldMay 14th 2009.

James, you are very wrong. Are my staff not wanting to be felt up by drunken Rangers fans 'scaredy cats'? Am I, as a women, not wanting to have to save a Russian man from having his head caved in when he's already covered in blood again, a 'scaredy cat'. I'm certainly not afraid of life James, that's a ridiculous comment. Lots of things are exceptional, it doesn't make it ok. Any other bunch of supporters and it probably would have been a great day with a few skirmishes and loutish behaivour, but fun overall. This scum, and it wasn't a minority, are not welcome. I just assume you didn't see anything like the worst of it James. I've been to world cups and seen all kinds of behaivour, what made this different was you couldn't get away from it in the city and the general public were targeted by some of the mindless jocks and then they went on a purposeful night of destruction.

emma graceMay 14th 2009.

Scaredy cats?? James you're out of order. I've worked in the bar industry for years, and have been to enough festivals and big outdoor events to not be intimidated by crowds or groups of drunken yobs. And as for being suburban? I live in the city centre and at the time was working nights. Nothing suburban about that. Your experience was obviously very different to a lot of other peoples'. I was genuinely afraid to walk home, and for that reason I don't ever want to experience anything like Rangers Day again.

BlackersMay 14th 2009.

Get a grip and grow up... it was a rotten day and the aftermath was disgraceful.

AnonymousMay 14th 2009.

Just interested to know what James would have felt and done if he'd been the young lady whose car was completely trashed by Rangers 'fans' in front here, despite her appeals. Would he have thought, hey this is fun and you know what it's exceptional, who needs a car? Would he have felt excited? Unless you say the worst of it Jimmy boy, you can't really call anyone a scaredy cat and if you felt excited being hugged and groped by Rangers fans, that's a different issue...

BlackersMay 14th 2009.

and also ....yes lets celebrate the idiots who beat up the police officer....

AnonymousMay 14th 2009.

those pictures are nothing compared to the ones I took at 7am the morning after on my way to work, there was so much more garbage - I cut myself on a broken bottle and had to buy new shoes b.c they were ruined. They treated Manchester with disgrace - disgusting.

antMay 14th 2009.

I work looking over Albert Square and had a good view all day of what went on around that area. Rangers fans, in general, behaved disgracefully. All they wanted to do was get as drunk as possible. Most couldn't even stand well before the game started. They p*ssed where they stood despite many porta-loos set up along princess street. They even tried to break into our building en mass. I'd call them wild animals but hat's an insult to animals. I am a big footy fan and would be happy to see more events in the city but not if Rangers are involved. They're a disgrace.

Aln BillMay 14th 2009.

All interesting comments -- certainly there was an element present of the genuine fans there who treated Manchester and its residents like dirt.There was also an element of the usual non-fan hangers on who were just there to ... well, be there.Also a determined and hardcore element of casuals from various other clubs.Plus of course ... our own usual idiot Mancunian element hellebent on exploiting the carry on for their own ends.As the artcile mentions, the arrest level was fairly low -- indeed, I have heard it mentioned that this level was as low as any other large event that we've hosted.To call the later actions "rioting" is specious --- two windows broken, a car overturned, bus shelters and flower pots broken ... what else ??And as for that horrible scene of a PC falling to the ground to be set upon by a group of yobs, the same thing happens every few weeks in almsot every big city in Britain.Unfortunately.Some of the "eye-witness" accounts are unusual to say the least -- for example, catching "fans" sniffing lines of coke off a bin ... hmmm ...The simple fact is ... some of the fans were idiots and worse, but the City council REALLY should have put them all in fanzones well out of the centre.As a previous poster has stated, the council wanted as much spending as possible from such a MASSIVE influx of people, and didn't have the brains to think about what the consequences would be if they weren't catered for with adequate stewarding and toilet facilities.

EponymousMay 14th 2009.

Indeed. May I formally request that Manchester City Council spend at least a portion of my next colossal council tax bill on 'brains'.

I was there, returns (a little less ranty)May 14th 2009.

Aln Bill it may be convenient to blame the council and - from what I can see - Mancunians themselves for the dirty behaviour of the scum who treated our city like a sewer. The truth is that every scrote that I encountered that day was a drunk Glaswegian. I didn't hear any other accent, apart from a couple of real charmers from the North of Ireland.These drunkards were not interested in having a just delightful day in Heaton Park - they wanted to come to the city and they wanted to trash the city. These people did not want to take a picnic to Tatton Park to watch the Halle Orchestra. As I pointed out in an earlier, spectacularly bad humoured rant, a friend was in Blackpool and, guess what, their behaviour there was exactly the same. And if you think that police officers are attacked and almost killed "every few weeks" in the UK I really wonder where you live. It must be Glasgow... For those who actually want to read a really good account of the whole thing, the council did a report on it which - in all fairness - seems to be quite a balanced and objective piece of work. www.manchester.gov.uk/…/5._UEFA_Cup_Final_1_.pdf… It actually deals with all of the so-called lack of preparations and why they didn't have fan zones in spiffing locations in the outskirts of the city.

Aln BillMay 14th 2009.

"I was there", there's no point in us having an internet slapping match -- we both know it's pointless.I agree totally that the amount of drunk Glaswegians was ridiculous. We al know that the sights of men pi**ing in doorways, or shamelessly in full view of the public, is not a nice thing to recall. There was an atmosphere of menace, although in my experience it was no more or less than at most Festivals I've ben to recently ! Not wanting to make a big point about it, but police officers ARE injured in similar incidents the length and breadth of urban Britain. For example, five officers were injured as Chelsea fans "rioted" after their Euro Final a week after Manchester !!Ever week it happens ... sometimes even in Manchester ....

EponymousMay 14th 2009.

I've just read that report. It's good to read some actual facts and I'm grateful for the link, but the facts are mixed up (especially in the conclusion) with a fair bit of council marketing guff - not to mention unanswered questions. The main reason for the problems (inadequate toilet facilities, rubbish collection, alcohol consumption) is blamed on the fact that the council and its supporting organisations simply didn't anticipate the sheer volume of Rangers fans who were going to turn up. Innocent enough, although I'm not sure how the estimate was quite so out. And why didn't the local authorities investigate more thoroughly which park areas close to all sides of the city might be suitable, even for the anticipated 80,000 fans? Why didn't they have a pool of stewards on stand-by when the initial 260 (!!!) quickly proved insufficient? Why did they rely on bars and restaurants in the city centre to 'augment' the measly portaloos? Why were the (later looted) merchandise stall and beer tent not protected by police from 11.30am when the first 'missiles' were thrown at the live performers on stage? I love Manchester and I want the eyes of the world on it as much as anyone, but this was a great big balls up, and I'm not sure we're ready yet to do it again safely.

M30May 14th 2009.

Fantastic day, and one I remember fondly. Pat Karney and Manchester City Council yet again misread the situation and failed to provide the amenities for so many visitors to Manchester, so if there's any blame to be apportioned, then it lies at their door. The "aftermath" was a result of a poorly planned event, which would not occurred if Mr Karney and MCC spent more effort in trying to provide a safe atmosphere for so many visitors as opposed to making a statement on North West Tonight (unavailable in Scotland) telling visitors not to travel down, as well as having hystronics at the audacity of Tesco to sell alcohol on the day (not everyone can afford a £10 cocktail in Socio Rehab). Manchester continually bangs its drum about wanting to become a destination, and this has shown it can't cope under the city's current leadership

CastlefieldMay 14th 2009.

Eponymous, I just don't think the main reason for the problems was the lack of anticipation, so whether that's your view or the council I think it's wrong. I know all the Rangers fans weren't mindless scum but a large proportion were and they came with the intention of 'taking' Manchester. I think you could have had 10000 toilets and they would still have pissed on the floor! The Rangers supporters are well known for it, not that I want to get into an Old Firm war, but I think Celtic would have behaved better. They have before. Yes it could have policed better and I know our council made a show of themselves but they've hosted events before and will do in the future with not as many problems. This event was a perfect storm, Rangers in a Euro final in England, the sun etc etc However lets not forget the scum who attacked locals (I saw it), terrified women (I had staff in tears) and who were still pissing up walls the following afternoon have no excuse. They are scum, don't come back to Manchester.

lucky chrisMay 14th 2009.

"so if there's any blame to be apportioned, then it lies at their door"..... What an utterly cras comment. So NO blame should fall to the fans? Are you running in the next local election by any chance?

Milo WhizzbangMay 14th 2009.

Its the same old story brain dead drunken morons that ruined it!Why all the resources and money spent on a football mass P**s up?Not again! If you want to get drunk and be down right obnoxious and offensive stay at home with your own kind!

M30May 14th 2009.

Of course some blame lies with the fans, but no matter what event occurs, be it a football match, a rock concert, or a meeting of the Vale Royal Womens Institute, there will always be an undesireable element which causes trouble. The fact the city was so ill-prepared for this was the reason events took the amplified course they did. It would be interesting to read the thoughts of inhabitants cities which Manchester and Liverpool teams have visited. "Varna" and "Michael Shields" stands out as a shining example.

CastlefieldMay 14th 2009.

M30 I know what you're saying but having been to many events like this, World Cups etc, the difference here was that it simply wasn't a small minority of the fans. A lot of Rangers fans came with the intention of 'taking' Manchester.

M30May 14th 2009.

I appreciate what you're saying Castlefield, but I can't comment on the thoughts of the fans as a collective, I can only judge them on those who my friends an colleagues met. The atmosphere was almost reminiscent of Mardi Gras (another event which always attracts a troublesome contingent) The suggestion though that Celtic fans wouldn't have done the same thing does smack of bigotry though. In my opinion, elements of mindless violence and football go hand in hand, and happen across the country week in week out in the name of football. I personally don't like it, but it's part of the British psyche. I still maintain that MCC were woefully underprepared for what came, but despite this, the money spent in the city over those days more than makes up for a pair of ruined Jimmy Choos.

Leonard CMay 14th 2009.

First we take Manchester, then we take.........

I was there (and getting a bit sick of this moniker)May 14th 2009.

Eponymous - it is a good report because it is interesting to read some actual facts. I agree it's a bit mixed up but - and I'm no apologist for the council - it just seems that a lot of the "council are crap" brigade are pretty ill informed about what actually happened and the planning that was done. No-one, not the council, the cops, Rangers, the council and cops in Scotland, Rangers' fan clubs, or indeed the media (whose vision is of course less than 20/20 when not dealing with hindsight) anticipated there would be quite so many people coming. The most outlandish figure at the time was 150,000 - a good hundred thousand fewer than who did turn up. It's just the city's bad luck that it was Rangers who got to the final. M30 - why are you so down on Pat Karney? All you EVER see or hear Pat do, apart from slag off smokers, is talk up Manchester and speak with an obvious pride for the city he loves. It's a shame more weren't like him. God, that does make me look like a council apologist. I need a shower.Aln Bill - not meaning to get into a slapping match, although they can be such fun, but I just think that the finger of blame should be pointed squarely where it belongs - drunk, nasty, unpleasant Rangers fans and not everybody else who tried to deal with the b******s. Sorry if I came across as attacking you - this one just really does make my blood boil!

M30May 15th 2009.

With regard to Pat Karney, I personally find him the worst possible spokesperson for Manchester. He personifies Blair's British Nanny State, and his persecution of smokers was both unfair, spiteful, and counter productive. His obsession with ending happy hours and limiting the influence of Tesco also rankles. I also have issue with his involvement with Manchester Mardi Gras / Manchester Pride. Plus, at the time where I was a City Centre resident, he represented the City Centre without being voted to do so.

Pat's great (apart from the smoking thing)May 15th 2009.

Well M30 sorry to hear that. I think he's great. It's so fantastic to see someone who is filled to bursting with pride in this great city and only ever wants to talk about how brill it is to live and work here. I think, and correct me if I'm wrong, he speaks for the city centre because he lives in the city centre and all of the city centre councillors are liberal democrats. In fairness, like it or not (and in my case, not), it's a Labour council and they can hardly have a libdem person to be the city centre spokesman. Also, he hasn't been involved in Pride for years. And his involvement then, where he was unfairly and wrongly maligned, almost broke him. But thank goodness he came bouncing back. Let's have a ManCon vote: Is Pat Karney a good ambassador for Manchester? Sorry, bit off topic and now I really do need a shower after sticking up for the council quite so much!

CastlefieldMay 15th 2009.

If you only saw the good side it's a bit ingnorant to be commenting on a side you didn't see. It's great you enjoyed it but that doesn't dark side any better. It's not a pair of ruined Jimmy Choos, but people assualted, 'felt-up', robbed etc. From your comments I don't think you follow football and have an 80's view of it. Yes we're not all angels but Rangers have a name for it, of which they are very proud. There are very few major incidents in football nowadays in this country, so the ones that occur are highlighted. My comment on Celtic comes from their behaivour in Lisbon and on previous visits to Manchester, I am certainly not a bigot. You didn't see the worst of it, you don't follow football yet you make comments regarding football supporters and make light of the issues people have brought up, people with first hand experience of the bad side of that day which you don't have.

AnonymousMay 15th 2009.

I was in and around Picadilly all day up until I left for the stadium at 4ish. I was sober, and didnt see any trouble whatsoever - was stunned to find out what had happened. Im embarassed that the actions of some hooligans (not fans) tarnished what was a proud moment for our great club, but I will not let that spoil what was a fantastic day. The people of Manchester were very friendly and the banter was good. It was very poorly organised and I think GMP have to accept some blame for what went on as little or no provisions were made for the travelling support. The suggestion of some people here that RFC should pay to clean up the mess after is ridiculous - the city made a fortune from our visit.

M30May 15th 2009.

Is it safe to put my head above the parapet again? To conclude, Pat Karney doesn't speak for me, and despite my sharing his love of Manchester, I disagree with the direction in which he wants to take it. Re Rangers: If I'm commenting on the side I didn't see, then surely you're doing the same thing? I take exception that I have an 80s view of football and its followers (I simply don't follow a Manchester team) The number of Rangers fans vastly outnumbered any Celtic contingent to Manchester, and I would also like to raise the incidences of Manchester United fans banged up abroad, and the case of Michael Shields which underline that things like this happen in other European Cities. We live in Manchester, not Hebden Bridge. Things like this happen occasionally.

EponymousMay 15th 2009.

We might be safer than we think. Surely a fair few Rangers fans are laid up for the foreseeable with Wine Fever...

CastlefieldMay 15th 2009.

M30 - 'If I'm commenting on the side I didn't see, then surely you're doing the same thing?'Erm, no I'm not, as I have never said there wasn't anyone having fun, I haven't questioned that they were having fun nor the level of fun they had. Take exception all you like, but when was the last time you went to more than a couple of matches in a season, when was the last time you went to Europe with a team? The incidents where Utd fans got arrested in Rome make this look like World War 3, it was just pissed up singing etc by a FEW people. Michael Shields happened it Bulgaria, a different country to where the Liverpool game took place, which passed without significant trouble. Your view of football is pre-taylor report and regardless of who you support (not that it's relevant) you plainly haven't got a clue what you're talking about.

Andy SMay 15th 2009.

I think a couple of the complainers have shown themselves up to be opportunistic Celtic fans, to be honest. Yes, it was a bit lairy later on, yes there was piss everywhere, but that's not surprising given the sheer number of football fans in once place - it was completely unprecedented. As a Boltonian with no axe to grind either way in terms of the Glasgow clubs, I thought it was a brilliant day, and the level of genuine trouble was minimal in the scheme of things.

Slow BurnMay 15th 2009.

Mancon, articles like this are the reason I rarely visit this site anymore, whereas I was once a regular reader. Can you try and recover your identity? You may have more readers signing up to check out shock stories such but it'll do you no favours in the long run. This day was a disaster. And I would like to say that the City Council did a tremendous job! It's very easy to blame them but what did you expect them to do? Erect a fence around the City and keep them out? In the weeks leading up to the final the message from the Council was a clear 'do not come without a ticket. We are not erecting TV screens.' When it was obvious that thousands of Rangers fans were coming anyway the Council made the necessary decisions. Where else could they have put the TV screens? Heaton Park? Yeah right! These problems would have happended whatever action the Council had taken. Get over it. And those that go on about the cleaning bill! Christ! Change the record

CastlefieldMay 15th 2009.

Andy S, can you give examples of this? Thought not. Your comments re Celtic/Rangers leanings are embarassing rubbish, saying Celtic supporters have a better record for behaivour is true, Google it!

Andy SMay 15th 2009.

Well, you would say that as you're one of the people I'm talking about. And if it wasn't clear before, it certainly is now. Well done. See also "I was there". Noone else gets so excited about such things.

CastlefieldMay 15th 2009.

Andy, where's your examples? We're getting 'excited' because a small number of idiots who didn't see the worst of it, don't think it was that bad! I couldn't give a toss about Celtic. Come on Andy tell us where you get these ideas from, gives us examples otherwise you just look like a prick.

Andy SMay 15th 2009.

Well why are you still going on about them then? You're being hysterical, give it a rest.

CastlefieldMay 15th 2009.

Hysterical? You made a swipe that people were closet Celtic supporters, can't back it up so look a bit of a dick, and because of that I'm 'hysterical'. Classic!

If only they had been Texas RangersMay 15th 2009.

M30, M30, M30 - it's always safe to put your head above the parapet on Mancon! Again, I must apologise if it seems I've been having a go at you, although I have to say I do think some of your comments are rather odd. Comparing the Rangers lot to the Manchester Pride crowd is, frankly, offensive. I'm a gay and me and most of my kind do actually know how to behave ourselves in public, unlike the Rangers lot who behaved like they belonged in a zoo!

san franciscoMay 15th 2009.

happened to be in town when celtic played man utd, thought they were loud ,colorful but respectful, is true that two sets of supporters from the same city can be so different

MantomanMay 15th 2009.

CELTIC! Dont forget these people have allied themselves with Liverpool. No true MUFC supporter would even TALK about Celtic without spitting. EDITORIAL COMMENT: Right enough of the childish name calling. Keep on topic please and no insults. Be witty folks not buffoons.

James Chapman-KellyMay 15th 2009.

I can't keep this information in any longer BUT !! I have it on very good authority that the main screen in Piccadilly didn't actually malfunction it was ordered to be turned off by the police ! This was meant to disperse the crowd to other venues but all it did was create mayhem and the rest, as they say, "is history". Just to say my informant was a member of the constabulary. From the horses mouth so to speak.

CastlefieldMay 15th 2009.

and 9/11 was an inside job, AIDS was invented by the Americans and a man never landed on the moon! Never trust what those horses say, they've all got long tails!

EditorialMay 15th 2009.

Castlefield you're right. We're offended by that name '911 was an inside job'. It is offensive, ridiculous and slightly vile name. Oddly enough the editor is doing a review of Aaronovitch's Voodoo Histories next week - this is the book where he exposes the feebleness of thought in conspiracy theories.

James Chapman-KellyMay 15th 2009.

Oh ye of little faith!

Dave SMay 15th 2009.

I like the day. It was exciting and anthropologically interesting.

CastlefieldMay 15th 2009.

Can't wait! Going match now to make like a Rangers fan! Only joking.

Bob DaviesMay 15th 2009.

No way should that event return to Manchester. The city was completely ruined by the dangerous and disrespectful crowds. It was an utterly shameful display. They should not return.

espionagemanchester.comMay 15th 2009.

Maybe think about having a Celtic day instead? They're much nicer fans!

AnonymousMay 15th 2009.

I live in the city centre and I still can't believe their behaviour - a year later it still makes me mad! I'm a football supporter and regularly travel to away games and I'd never contemplate pissing in the street or acting like they did, even if I was drunk. I'd be ashamed. I don't know what it is about people that makes them act this way just because there is a large group of them and a football match happens to be on. I don't feel the need to go on a mission to get as pissed as possible at 9am. When my team are playing I like to stay sober and actually watch them play football, then have a few nice drinks afterwards. Sometimes this country (Britain) makes me sick, and I'm ashamed of it. I'd be even more ashamed to be Scottish or Glaswegian though. I guess for them it was probably just a typical day.

CastlefieldMay 15th 2009.

I'm not sure how accurate your facts are regarding Michael Sheilds or Istanbul but hey ho we'll go with them for arguments sake.As stated earlier by myself, I don't believe if the Rangers fans had had a potty each they would have pissed in it, they would not have left their plot when it was far easier to unzip the pants and away you go! Obviously not all of them, but a lot. And at Tesco they were not stipulating they had to buy a crate EACH and drink it before lunchtime, they could have shared! The Chinese supermarket on Oldham Rd were not saying 'you must panic buy us out of lager in ten minutes and carry your goods back into town like a Viking returning from a pillage!' The council were taken a bit unawares but the Rangers FA (they get their own?!) should have been more honest about the behaivour and record of their fans, which is terrible. The council didn't have a long time to prepare for it, and had Fiorentina won the semi the trouble would not have been on that scale.By your writing spawny it seems you follow football so you'll know that yes loud behaivour happens, singing songs offensive to some and shouting at the locals also rears it head on euro away trips but this lot were scum. I have never in my life seen such an underclass of people with no idea how to behave. The Rangers fans would have caused the same trouble in any other UK city, whatever the planning. If it had been abroad, a large proportion of the trouble makers wouldn't have been able to afford it and though that may sound like snobbery, it's true. Add to this Rangers are still saying the trouble makers were not Rangers fans (the Rangers tatoos must have an over elaborate diguise)but opportunists that had travelled down to cause trouble!!! It was a perfect storm.

M30May 15th 2009.

What a can of worms... I seem to be coming under attack for having an opposing viewpoint and also "not having a clue what I'm going on about" (a presumtious and personal attack). The Michael Shields apologists are also out in force. It appears not to matter if he was charged with throwing a paving slab at a waiter - since it was in a different country to where the match was played. He was charged and convicted by a fellow EU state of a serious crime, and he remains guilty until acquitted, no matter how many times Cilla Black and Atomic Kitten do a benefit concert at the Liverpool Empire. Straying wildly off topic, but to give a bit of context to my comments re Manchester Pride, I'm also a gay man, and I have seen since the mid 90s that Mardi Gras / Pride always attracts a contingent of Wythenshawe Boot Boys who with the intention of causing trouble, urinating in the door of McTuckys and beating as many people up as possible. I have witnessed many such incidents, and compared to what I've seen over the years at Mardi Gras, the Rangers fans were darlings in copmarison.

EditorialMay 15th 2009.

This is an article about Rangers Day. Michael Shields has nothing to do with it so can we keep on topic.

BenMay 15th 2009.

Castlefield you really really should get that job at the daily mail...and end all your RANTS with has the world gone mad?! Give it a rest. Please. Soon.

CastlefieldMay 15th 2009.

Ben and other aliases, stop reading my 'RANTS' if they upset you, although God knows how they do?!. Honestly, it's like having a stalker!

If only they had been Texas RangersMay 15th 2009.

M30, Pride has changed significantly in recent years and there hasn't been any of the trouble which, I agree with you, used to occur in the past. Not only have the cops got their act together in terms of policing it, but it's now run in an incredibly slick and professional way. It's really unfair, in my view, to make a comparison, or - worse - to say that the Rangers %*%&$)% (insert expletive!) were better behaved! And hopefully you're taking my comments as engaging in debate rather than attacking you. I also agree that heated debate is possible without personal insult. And apologies if this rant is off topic - I don't think it is as the comparison was made between Rangers and Pride - two words which shouldn't appear in the same sentence!

M30 featuring Julia GrantMay 15th 2009.

If Only: Unfortunately last year, one of my friends was attacked during Pride. I am unaware of any incidences down the village involving the many Rangers fans who ended up down there last year, many of them in Cruz 101. I agree, that the police presence has increased, however, simple mathematics dictate that the village area is too small for such a large influx of people. Similar issues as the Rangers episode Surely Heaton Park would be a much better location for both the procession and event. This is why I no longer bother with Manchester Pride, as I consider Brighton to organise a much better one. To conclude, anyone who attends a football match or a gay pride event looking to cause mayhem is as bad as the other. However, both these events were attended by a majority of those keen on just having a good time. Sensationalism dictates we hear about the minority of trouble-causers.

JinkiesMay 15th 2009.

I saw people sh_tting in the middle of the street at last years Pride so I agree, Gay or football fans, both crowds are pretty similar in my opinion.

cpingMay 15th 2009.

The first recommendation in the report is worth a soem consideration in the light of another 'football' event next month.It refers to travelling fans but its is just a applicable to the more local variety.'The right to party? This is an issue for UEFA and the FA. Over the lastten years there has been a growing trend amongst football fans inparticular, to travel to away games to show support for their teams.Whereas this used to be a majority of fans with tickets and a minoritywithout, (hoping to get a ticket in the host city), this has changed andmore and more fans without tickets are travelling to support their team.There is a danger of this being seen as a right to party, to be entertainedand looked after and to be transported away afterwards. The CityCouncil feels this should be challenged not only because of the sorts ofnumbers experienced by Manchester (albeit an extreme example) butalso the sense that some visitors had unrealistic expectations and feltthey were let down which cannot be accepted or sustained'

AnonymousMay 15th 2009.

Gay Rangers fans are the worst Jinkies

If only...May 15th 2009.

M30, I agree that anyone who is going to cause trouble is as bad as the other. I also agree that usually it is, as you put it so well, sensationalism that means the minority are the focus. However, my problem with the Rangers crowd is that what I saw was not just a minority of people intent on trouble, but rather a majority of people who were incredibly vile. Please see my original post (as "I was there" - sorry - poor posting name). I was just off Canal Street just before the height of the violence and saw at least five fights. I also had to dodge out of the way of a glass bottle which smashed beside me, a splinter of which cut my shin. So I can assure you there WAS violence in that area! In terms of Pride, while it's not on that your friend was assaulted, the nature of the way the event is run now, ie professionally, with a cordoned off area with proper security (even though they can be a bit ar*ey sometimes) and police throughout, minimises the chances of something like that happening.Julia Grant - that's a blast from the past. If she's back on the scene that's DEFINITELY a ManCon story!

John S. LockeMay 15th 2009.

The wholde City stank for days and there where scum bags everywhere...some okay folk, but a whole lot of scum!...Not for me ta - t'was a bag of sh*te - literally!

CastlefieldMay 15th 2009.

I double dare you with a cherry on top to stop going on ManCon just to see what I have said, the only comments you've made on this are personal attacks on me! Grow up! I'll make a comment on whatever I want and, you know what, sometimes it will be different from yours, deal with it! Back to Rangers John Locke got it spot on, some okay, most scum. Agree to disagree Ben.

east lancsMay 15th 2009.

Love is in the air, when Cas & Ben are around... wooohooaaa, love is in the aaaair! wooohooaaa, love is in the air!

BenMay 15th 2009.

Maybe it is love... like sleepless in seattle.Sorry for being childish I'll never say mean things about her again, and proceed to bed with no dinner.

BenMay 15th 2009.

....and stick to comments like 'some okay, most scum'

scoteeeMay 15th 2009.

I have a great idea......let's put up screens in the squares and let 50,000 Scottish supporters come down to our city full of the english and drink beer all day...???Does'nt exactly sound like the best of ideas before it started.I liken it to "Why don't we show a European final between England and Scotland and invite all the Scottish fans down for drinking in the streets"?. Is it the not same thing or am I missing something?

scoteeeMay 15th 2009.

The only thing absent from the day was William Wallace trotting across the gardens on the back of his horse.Its clear that these people haven't moved on much since the late 13th century,still blood,booze and arses on show!!!

If only...May 15th 2009.

Scoteee, in all fairness, inviting hordes of drunken neanderthals down to the city was only one of the possible outcomes when the city agreed to host the final.

CastlefieldMay 15th 2009.

In fairness I don't think anyone thought Rangers would get to the final, even the Rangers supporters, which may explain why they went so over the top! It should have been Zenit St Peterburg V Fiorentina, Rangers beat Sporting Lisbon, Werder Bremen and Panathanaikos (spelt wrong no doubt) on their way to Manchester. This is about as likely as City winning the league next year! I think any of these other teams and it would have fine. The Italians were fine when the Milans came over, Germans are brilliant football supporters and I don't think the Greeks would have brought many. Again as I've said, it was a perfect storm.

jimMay 15th 2009.

it was a brilliant day and the fans were great

DigMay 15th 2009.

Celebrate Rangers Day? So a lot of you actually want thousands of Rangers fans back in the city urinating, littering, fighting, abusing, letching, fondling, taking drugs, passing out? Why not just leave them in Glasgow where they behave like that every weekend and Glasgow pays for the clean up?

Aln BillMay 15th 2009.

Interesting to see that of the five men to be formally charged in connection with all of this ... three are from Glasgow, with probably one of them being a "true" Rangers supporter, and the others being there for their own reasons ...Of the other two, one is from Manchester, the other from Chorley.As was ALWAYS stated on here after these incidents, it was NAIVE of anyone to suggest that there were no local troublemakers also involved.After all, that's what they do -- make trouble !!

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