London Hearts Supporters Club

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Scene: The Offices of the SFA.

On the wall are pictures of Ernie Walker and Matt Busby.

David Taylor is sitting in a plush leather arm chair, studying a sheaf of legal documentation. He gets up, looks at the pictures, and turns Busby’s picture to the wall. There is a knock on the door. Taylor moves back to his seat, assumes what he thinks is his most louche, languid pose. It may be a journalist, or someone even more important.
David Taylor  
Come In!  
  ENTER Andy Davis.
Taylor visibly wilts: he smiles, showing his expensively-acquired dentistry, but as the moments pass, the ends of his mouth droop until the smile has become a grimace
Do come in Davis. I wasn’t expecting you quite so soon, but now is as good a time as any.  
  Oh thank you sir. Thank you very much sir.
Sit down Davis.  
  Oh I’d rather stand if that’s all right with you sir.
Alright Davis, relax. You understand why you’re here. We’ve taken a bit of flak over what happened the other night over in the East, and we just need to make sure of the facts before issuing any press statement, you understand?  
  Oh yes sir. Get our stories straight sir, I perfectly understand. Synchronise watches and all that.
Well, no Davis, we just want to hear YOUR story. Exactly what happened when the ball was crossed in.  
  Oh that’s easy sir. The ball came in, the boy in blue rose like an eagle and was just about to power the ball into the net off his fair handsome napper when the ugly one in maroon hit him over the heid with an iron bar. Stonewall penalty.

An iron bar, you say?
  Oh yes sir. Unmistakable so it was.
(another pause)

You saw Miller of Hearts hit Kyrgiakos of Rangers with an iron bar? You’re sure?
  Well, come to think of it….
  It could have been aluminium. I mean, iron’s bloody heavy, ye ken. It would be impossible for him to carry an iron bar around with him. Must have been one of those lighter alloys, maybe the sort of thing they make those modern tennis rackets out of. Still vicious, mind. The laddie didnae stand a chance.
  Yes sir?
You’re making this up, aren’t you Davis?  
  Oh no sir.
Aren’t you just saying this because that’s what you think we want to hear? Rangers got a goal in the very last minute of the game because you thought you saw one player club another in the penalty box? Aren’t you saying this just to please us?  
  … Are you not pleased that Rangers won then, sir?
Yes Davis, we are very pleased Rangers won. And don’t get me wrong, we’re very pleased with you. Very pleased.  
  Oh thank you sir. I knew I wouldn’t let you down sir.
But it has caused … certain problems … quite frankly Davis, we think it’s just possible that you – shall I say – embellished it a wee bit, that perhaps you just THOUGHT you saw something because you WANTED to see it. With all the best intentions, I quite understand, but … quite frankly, it was just unfortunate timing, last kick of the game and all that. Could you not have flagged for a penalty earlier in the game, made it a bit less conspicuous and all that?  
  Oh no sir, that wouldn’t have guaranteed Rangers victory sir. It had to be at the very end, don’t give the other lot a chance to get back into the game sir.
Ahh, right…. Good thinking Davis, shows you’ve got cunning. But perhaps your plan lacked, oh, something in the way of subtlety, I don’t know.  
  Come again sir?
Well, you’ve put Mr Dallas in a very awkward position, you know. There is a bit of ‘previous’, as you might say, and against all instincts he was desperately trying to run away from any spot of bother when you go waving that damned flag of yours and he’s ended up having to do exactly what his instincts have been demanding of him for the previous ten minutes. A cooler head would have cost us so much less, but once you give him a sniff of maroon blood, he’s off like a hound at the Berkshire hunt, which is quite apt, if you follow me Davis, eh?  
  Sorry sir?
I was making a joke, Davis.  
  A joke? Oh yes sir. Very funny things, jokes. I laughed at one once. But this is no laughing matter sir. Think of all those Rangers season-ticket holders. Do you think they’re laughing?
Well, I think they could afford themselves a wry chuckle after your exhibition Davis.  
  I’m sorry sir, have I done wrong? I thought you would be so pleased.
We ARE pleased with you, Davis, VERY pleased with you - but your testimony is just a little – flowery, shall we say – and I don’t think we can afford to put you on the stand as a witness. The prosecution would insinuate that you made up the entire thing just because you thought it would please your lords and masters.  
  Not just them sir – you as well.
Yessss, them…. and us. Of course. Tell me Davis, have you done a lot of Rangers matches in the past?  
  Never missed a game sir.
I meant as a linesman.  
  Oh, well, not what you’d call an OFFICIAL linesman. But I helped out at Ibrox every other week by shouting ‘offside’ from the enclosure. It wasn’t what you’d call exacting work sir, as I only needed to do it for one of the halves. Although come to think of it, during the other half I did shout ‘penalty’ quite a lot.
You’re mad, aren’t you Davis?  
  Oh yessir. Rangers Mad.
Well, there’s that, but you are also stark raving bonkers.  
  Oh thank you very much sir.
Hm. I think, though, your days as a linesman are numbered however: you’re a marked man now.  
  That would be all the stuff they threw at me sir.
Well, yes, I suppose that would, uh, leave traces. But you can’t be a linesman any more. Nor a referee, I’m afraid – we’ve got far too many of your kind on the books as it is, and we’re meant to be doing something for minorities – you know the sort of thing – unbiased, East Coast, good-looking: I tell you Davis, it’s PC gone mad!!  
  Does that mean I’m out of football sir?
Good God no. I’m offering you my job you fool.  
  Thankyouverymuchsir. Can I start now sir?
Yes. Now sit down for fuck’s sake, you’re in charge now  
What the Fans Said
NB Contains Swearing
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