Opinion – Green Brigade, please note, with fame comes adult responsibility

The Celtic Star has always provided a platform for Celtic supporters to express their views and our writers are all free to express their own opinions with only the minimum of editorial interference, removing offensive language or the three letter word that’s been weaponised across the road.

So when an article appears it’s always the view of the writer and is never a collective editorial stance from The Celtic Star.

Today and probably over the coming days we will publish various articles on the club’s decision that was announced yesterday to ban the Green Brigade from Celtic Park pending a review with the ultras group which hopefully happens as soon as possible.

First up was Just an Ordinary Bhoy – you can read his article HERE – who is angry at the ban and believes that the safety issues are not the real reason, rather that it is all down to the Palestine flag display last week against Atletico Madrid, something that Celtic deny.

Next up is Eddie Murray who takes an entirely different view.

It might be helpful before going any further to re-state the reasons Celtic have given for this ban being issued, as The Celtic Star reported yesterday afternoon. The specific points causing the ban are as follows:

Photo: Bart Stoutjesdijk/Shutterstock

1.The widespread and unsafe use of pyrotechnics in Feyenoord on 19 September, which resulted in a fine for the Club from UEFA and safety issues for, and complaints from, other Celtic supporters;

2 .The unsafe behaviour at Fir Park on 30 September, including rushing turnstiles and forcing open fire exits to permit access to individuals without tickets and pitch incursions;

3.Illegally gained access to Celtic Park in advance of the match against Lazio on 4 October to bring in an unauthorised banner, including deliberate circumvention of safety and security rules and protocols, and intimidating and threatening behaviour towards staff;

4. Abuse of matchday access at Celtic Park in advance of the match against Kilmarnock on 7 October and another unauthorised display, breaching the restrictions previously communicated, and intimidating and threatening behaviour towards staff;

5. Abuse of matchday access at Celtic Park in advance of the match against Atletico Madrid on 25 October and another unauthorised display, breaching the restrictions previously communicated, including circumvention of safety and security procedures and the migration of many members of the group (some of whom were wearing face coverings) out of the Rail Seating Section across the North Stand prior to kick off; and

6. Unsafe behaviour at Easter Road on 28 October, including violent and intimidating behaviour towards stewards.

On the Palestine flag display at the three recent matches – Hearts, Atletico Madrid and Hibs – The Celtic Star specifically challenged the club about this yesterday afternoon and the club deny that this display had anything at all to do with the ban.

That’s something you may or may not believe depending on where you stand on this matter but essentially it is irrelevant as it’s the points above that need to be addressed by the parties directly involved – the Celtic Board and the Green Brigade – if a satisfactory resolution is to be found.

If you are reading this and would like to outline your own thoughts you can do so in the comments section below. Alternative if you would like to pen an article for us to publish please feel free to do so and you can email this through to editor@thecelticstar.co.uk

Now let’s hand over to Eddie Murray to have his say…

Celtic – Sanity Prevail!

The contentious issues surrounding Celtic, The Green Brigade and Politics threatens to rumble on like a Sherman Tank and shows no sign of abating.

I take my hat off to my esteemed colleagues at The Celtic Star who have called BS on certain issues, ‘articles’ which the MSM have erroneously fielded in a bid to enhance copy, clearly.

Firstly, the slant from the Herald which wildly ventured that Celtic Park was under threat of closure had the board not intervened and banned the North Curve occupants.

Total lies, and LUBO98 at The Celtic Star posted a firm rebuke from Councillor, Ruairi Kelly stating that the Council have no intention of poking their nose into club business. In fact, he stated that he SUPPORTED the GB stance on war crimes and genocide. Whatever your take on this may be, that’s apparently this councillor’s view.

JUSTANORDINARYBHOY called out the hypocrisy of politics being a stick to beat Celtic when he cited Ukrainian flags, Poppy fascism and squaddies squirrelling down the Ibrox stands without a word or a rebuke from the Scottish ‘journalists’ who clearly didn’t see anything.

Now, I’m not here to plagiarise their work, but simply to add that I am in total agreement about their exclamations of exasperation when it comes to reporting/adjudication of all things Celtic.

It has always been thus and will continue despite the embarrassing outings of the One-Eyes Jacks in both print and politics. Celtic is a political animal and the fans have always sided with the underdog, not least because they are the only ones who seem to have the heart to do so.

Fly Ukraine flags, fair game. Conversely, Palestinian flags are worthy of a fine and a warning. Why? Who decides which side of the political fence we must, not only sit on but publicly support?

Answers on a postcard to the Celtic board. Why? Because in my opinion, they have a responsibility to adjudicate for the thousands upon thousands of faithful fans who pour their hard-earned cash into the Parkhead coffers.

E Peter Lawwell is seen during the Cinch Scottish Premiership match between Heart of Midlothian and Celtic FC at Tynecastle Park on October 22, 2023 in Edinburgh, Scotland. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Why has the board not challenged the authorities who say you can pay Peter, but not Paul? How can they blithely sit by and accept a perspicuously unjust ruling which forces their public to take a side only of their choosing?

This is beyond my comprehension, and I have yet to hear a reasonable argument to support this sporting fascism-which it is unless you can convince me otherwise!

William Wallace at Hampden? Green light. Bobby Sands at Celtic Park? Fined! Two guys dying for their country’s freedom, but only one acceptable due to the political opinion of the governing bodies. Why was this not contested? You already know the answer.

Photo Mark Runnacles/Shutterstock

As for the Green Brigade, they are shooting themselves in the foot. Yes, they must be allowed to fly a flag in opposition to genocide and oppression, that’s what Celtic were formed for despite people advocating otherwise.

However, the defiance of another (UEFA) ruling which states that flares are a flagrant breach of footballing rules, then so be it. I love them and the colour they bring to the spectacle, but they are a health hazard and many Celtic fans have spoken out against their use in a confined space.

It is not a matter of choice, but prudence, and the GB have shown scant regard for their fellow supporters by sticking two fingers up to the rest of the paying spectators. And there lies the heart of the matter. Defiance. ‘We can do what we please regardless of cost. We can force our issue because we have numbers, and there’s nothing you can do about it.’

Charging gates to let their mates in, (yes, it happens), intimidating others to do their bidding, (Yes, that also happens). Pig watch? I’ll leave that to your own conscience and deliberation despite Glasgow’s finest displaying exaggerated control over the years, as highlighted on this site and others.

Celtic’s Japanese striker #08 Kyogo Furuhashi (L) celebrates after scoring his team first goal during the UEFA Champions League match between Celtic and Atletico Madrid at Celtic Park, on October 25, 2023 (Photo by ANDY BUCHANAN/AFP via Getty Images)

I have a good friend, a man who spends thousands to travel the world (from abroad) just to see the Celtic. He is an avid investor in the club and a great source of knowledge about the truth behind the scenes.

In a recent conversation with him he stated that he was on the verge of quitting, the travel and all that entails. Why? Because, in his own words, he “is sick and tired of spending my cash to travel to Rome, Madrid and other global venues just to watch young ‘neds’ bully older fans and spoil the occasion.”

But, if you speak out you are out of touch, a Fitba’ Da! So you see, it’s not just about the flags, but the unrealistic expectations of a certain element among the support who value themselves higher than others and if you don’t go along with them…and then talk about fascism?

Celtic’s Japanese striker #08 Kyogo Furuhashi (R) celebrates after scoring his team first goal during the UEFA Champions League group E football match between Celtic and Atletico Madrid at Celtic Park  on October 25, 2023. (Photo by ANDY BUCHANAN/AFP via Getty Images)

Like the atrocities in Gaza and Israel, it’s time for a sit-down and a conference to decide on how best to end this conflict. It’s one that only the strongest can win and there needs to be adjudication, and a reality check in the humility stakes.

If not, the only losers are the Celtic fans who have grown up watching the club since infancy. They are on the outer whilst a minority rule-with an iron fist in some cases. That is unreasonable, and untenable. With fame comes adult responsibility!

Fly the flag? Absolutely, and without fear of reprisals. Israel just bombed a refugee camp and justified it by killing ‘a war lord’. Every decent human should demonstrate anger against this atrocity.

Lord it over your fellow supporters with boorish behaviour in person and online darkening the club’s good name, one built up to the heights over many years? No chance, That is not the Celtic way, never will be and must be opposed likewise. Sanity prevail!

Eddie Murray

About Author

Eddie Murray – I Grew up with the Lions, coming from a Celtic-daft family. Played against Jinky once! Paradise was my second home and Dalglish was my hero. A long term Brisbane Bhoy for many years and have been blogging here for many years. Written a book on Ange/ Brisbane Roar/ Celtic which awaits publication. Writing on other genres as I speak. Top moments? Interviewing Cesar, Wispy, Cairney, The Maestro, Alan Thompson.


  1. Been going to CP for over 55 years,so in the eyes of some I’m just an old Celtic da who’s opinion mean nothing,so here it is.
    I love when the GB do thing that promote themselves and the club.
    Banners (even Palestinians ones) tifos,atmosphere,charity all brilliant, but they are constantly overshadowed by divisionional chants,especially away games are an embarrassment,Rod Stewart not welcome at CP was disgusting,the chant of OB is repulsive and the IRA version of Beautiful sunday makes me squirm.the timing of the banner at the Kilmarnock game was also not thought thru,
    I also think the board should go! Not because they challenge any of the above, or we assume because they are wealthy they vote Tory and don’t care,that’s not our concern, what is that they refuse to bury the team across the city and keep wanting them on our coattails,that’s what we should be getting after them for not spending our money on the clubs Signings and infrastructure,not and allowing the SFA and the Lanarkshire Referees Association run over the top of us without challenge,
    We don’t need the GB but on form they are fantastic for the Ground and the club
    So guess the ask is do what you do best and not what causes division,we have enough in Scotland wanting to do that to us! Both need to get this sorted and quickly then do what both can do that’s best for Celtic not themselves.

    • I wish these people would leave political views outside the turnstiles. Celtic is a football club. The club has acted in the best way to stop this silly embarrassing behaviour. Why is our club being used like this by a ultra supporter group. If they care about this club they would not do things to embarrass it. Banners and pyro technics are not needed. Your support for the 11 players on field Is!, support the victims out side off football bhoys and ghirls, CELTIC” FOOTBALL “CLUB NOT CELTIC POLITICAL CLUB.

  2. Great article. I have no problem showing our support for the Palestinian cause and can’t stand the hypocrisy of the football authorities however, the GB think they are above the law and can do whatever they want. I have witnessed first hand on numerous occasions their violence, stupidly and intimidation. They need to grow up and respect fellow fans and Celtic’s reputation. If they can do this then I am happy that they can be allowed to continue showing their political views (although hope they can do this in a cleverer and challenging way)

  3. Let’s be honest here, the tail is wagging the dog. The GB are largely a bunch of ill-informed beams.

  4. Great article and balanced, I want to see the Green Brigade back as soon as, but they are in the wrong. They can’t just do whatever they want and hide behind some cloak of injustice, fir example I personally like the pyros but they have been deemed illegal so stop it, chose your fight don’t break the law fight for change. They say they live Celtic and are Celtic supporters so why do you hurt your club and other fans just because you want to prove you love Celtic get round the table and comply with what’s agreed to end this. The team come first end of.

  5. The Green Brigade embarrasses our club, and cause distress to other supporters and working class stewards and police officers just doing their job. Time to reseat that section and sell the seats to fans who won’t get the club fined…money that could be used to reduce ticket prices for low income fans rather than Sent to uefa

  6. As far as I’m aware, from personal experiences and reports of others, there’s never been any dissension in the match going support to any display, chants, activities of the Green Brigade in the near 20 years of their existewnce.

    If there was it would be all over social media in this day and age, as well as the Celtic board’s friends in the MSM.

    A pathetic rabble of, usually, bitter old men on this and other blogs is a demonstrably non-representative demographic of Celtic fans, certainly match going and, I strongly suspect, most others.

    Instead they are more akin to others (the same?) who are whipped up to rail against the latest ‘folk devils’, immigrants, muslims etc.

  7. Excellent article from Mr Murray.
    The spectacle and songs, leading to a great atmosphere, that those in the GB section of Celtic Park produce is one that makes a notable difference to the match day atmosphere when they are not there!
    However all the negatives the GB bring to our club cannot be ignored, apologized for or excused. The fact that other clubs fly controversial flags, banners , political or otherwise or sing songs that offend cannot and must not be used as justification for anyone at Celtic Park to do so too.
    My own personal opinion. Time is up for the GB. Refund them the remainder of the current season ticket and invite those fans from what I believe to be a lengthy season ticket waiting list to take their place.

  8. That was a really well written and well balanced article. I too am 100% in agreement re the flags and flew mine last week. What I’m not in agreement with re the green brigade is the IRA sentiment. Ireland will be unified probably in the next 10 years, The ohh ahh up the Ra chant does my head in, not because it political but because it’s not relevant.. You”re spot on about the flares etc too