Ahead of Rangers' European tie against Luxembourg's Progres Neiderkorn, concerns have emerged that FARE (Football Against Racism in Europe) will once again target our club and supporters by sending an 'observer' to the tie.
Rangers fans may recall FARE being responsible for our supporters being banned from the away leg of the Malmo tie in 2011 after their representative submitted a report to UEFA following our ties with PSV Eindhoven. At the time, Rangers accused FARE of disproportionately targeting the club and it appears that history may be about to repeat itself.
Following the UEFA decision to use FARE observers to overrule their own match delegate's report on Rangers, it emerged that Piara Power, the man in charge of FARE, is married to an ardent Celtic fan, Aasmah Mir, who has worked as a broadcaster for the BBC.
FARE 'observers' are anonymous. This means that not even UEFA know who is making the report to them. FARE, who are accountable to nobody, 'guarantee' the integrity of these observers in a system clearly open to massive abuse.
Despite Celtic having played in Europe for several years during our absence from competition, we are not aware of FARE having reported them for anything - despite them receiving a record number of sanctions from UEFA during that period. In fact we are not aware of FARE ever having sent an observer to specifically report on Celtic despite these wide ranging issues.
FARE themselves decide which games they will "target" which leads to an obvious problem with bias. They have also been embroiled in scandals of their own with Powar himself accused of racism. Despite this, UEFA continue to act on FARE reports from the games they choose to attend.
Rangers supporters have been urged by the club over the past couple of days to be on their best behaviour. It appears this may be particularly relevant if FARE have indeed decided to once again target our fans despite a near 6-year absence from European competition. Should FARE send observers, it is sure to once again raise questions about the agenda of the organisation.