Media relations this season at Ibrox have been strained with the club deciding that standard access would cost publishers and broadcasters £25,000 with the treat of a few one-to-one interviews with Steven Gerrard for those that agreed to pay up.
As the SPFL broadcast partners it seems that Sky Sports have been granted access with STV also providing regular content with Rhaman Bhardwaj joining David Edgar and Mark Dingwall to ask the softest of softball questions.
A few other voices have chipped in questions, usually prefaced by ‘Hi Steven’ or ‘Good Morning Steven’ followed by a trivial question such as how pleased he must be by the form of X,Y or Z in the last match or an update on Ryan Jack’s return from knee surgery.
In previous seasons the content has been dull but this season it has sunk even lower with most media conferences barely lasting beyond five minutes.
Yesterday there seemed to be a few new faces in the media seats at Ibrox, helping to blank out coverage of SPFL sponsors cinch.
Joining Dingwall, Edgar and the other cheerleaders were Ewan Murray (Guardian), Alison Conroy (Radio Clyde) and a few others. They may have decided to pay their £25,000 but that seems unlikely.
I got the subway to and from Ibrox today with no hassle, sectarian chants… actually nothing at all. The Old Firm venues are hugely improved from even a decade ago. This silly little boy/ultra element needs stamped upon. But it doesn’t represent how people behave.
— Ewan Murray (@mrewanmurray) August 29, 2021
Strangely, it seems that Celtic decided to play ball and reward the media outlets that had passed the standards demanded by the Ibrox PR team. Those deemed trustworthy to stay on message.
After the match Ange Postecoglou gave video interviews to Sky Sports and Celtic TV. Additionally, to the new Ibrox media partners Celtic provided their manager for questioning.
The Glasgow (Evening) Times had lengthy quotes from the Celtic boss,
There wasn’t a word from Callum McGregor on any Celtic platform, however Daily Record readers were given the thoughts of the Celtic captain including speculation over the possible departure of Odsonne Edouard.
Clubs are required by the SPFL to put up a player and someone from the management team to speak to the media after matches but as we’ve known down the years clubs from Ibrox pick and choose the rules that they wish to go along with.
Currently they are putting an £8m sponsorship deal for all SPFL clubs at risk by refusing to carry the logos for cinch on their shirt and associated backing boards.
No action has been taken by the SPFL, no sanctions, no fines, not even a charge for failing to comply with the sponsorship rules that clubs from Celtic to Clyde are complying with.
Media criticism has been muted. Yesterday some outlets were granted an amnesty with access to Ibrox. For reasons best known to themselves Celtic provided exclusive content from their manager and captain to the favoured Ibrox outlets.
Celtic travelled to and from Ibrox yesterday endorsing the travel firm of the Ibrox chairman, it seems that the bonds between the two clubs are deeper than ever.
? “I just thought Kyogo would be much more of a threat down the middle. To be honest I probably should’ve started him there”
Celtic boss Ange Postecoglou says he might’ve got it wrong against Rangers. pic.twitter.com/lK04UzRRmB
— Clyde 1 Superscoreboard (@ClydeSSB) August 29, 2021