Everyone in Scotland knows what is at stake this season. Everyone knows what financial disarray the Ibrox club have got themselves into. They know the money at stake for winning the league this season and guaranteeing Champions League group football. It would be a game changer for them. It would guarantee the continuity of the club founded in 2012.
And of course when I say everyone, that includes referees. We saw what they were capable of during the infamous ‘honest mistake’ season and we are seeing a repeat of it playing out in front of our very eyes this season.
It has gotten so bad that it isn’t just Celtic fans complaining. Look at social media, listen to the phone ins. The rest of the supporters from other clubs in the league all realise what’s going on. You see them joking about it, Aberdeen fans creating memes, Hearts fans making videos, it’s all fun and games until it costs their own club points, and then the laughter turns to frustration and anger.
We have even seen many Rangers fans openly being thankful that certain referees have allegiances to the Ibrox club after game changing decisions have gone in their favour. It is so blatant that a lot of them aren’t even bothering to hide it anymore.
But there are still many more, the vast majority of them, who refuse to believe that referees are giving them a helping hand this season. They want to believe it is a fair playing field. They want to believe they will win this league because they have been the best team. But deep down, they will know what has happened this season and why, no matter how much they try to convince others, and most importantly, themselves, that it isn’t the case.