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The case for broadcasting to be devolved is coming home

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THEY think it’s all over ... it is now. I felt sorry for England. Gareth Southgate and his young players were a beguiling team, hence I foreswore the Anybody But England stance. Many Scots took that position, and it wasn’t the team but the TV that irked. The reality is we’re watching the match on someone else’s channel.

Commentators the world o’er are partisan when national teams are playing and that is understandable. It’s what every nation expects and those covering the game reflect the wants and passions of the viewers back home.

England’s no different except the received pronunciation and mostly subdued comments of Kenneth Wolstenholme in 1966 have been replaced by a range of accents and much more partisan support. Most of that doesn’t bother me and I very much like Gary Lineker, the obvious bias understandable when you consider they’re primarily speaking to an English audience. However, continual Second World War references from other pundits are infuriating and frankly unhealthy.

And to be fair, Scotland’s no different, it’s just we don’t have either the outlet or even the opportunity. Back in the glory days when we qualified, it was with good reason that the sports press corps were described as fans with typewriters and the commentators no different. It wasn’t Alf Ramsey and 66 but Jim Baxter and 67, not Agincourt but Bannockburn that peppered descriptions. But, I loved the partisanship of the likes of Arthur Montford, and I even remember........

© Herald Scotland