media & technology

Perfect pitch

Scotland's first glossy football magazine hits the stands this month, and it's aiming for a better track record than the native game.

Words: Brian Donaldson

Timing is everything. The perfect joke or the cross to the far post as the ortrushing six foot striker homes in on the flighted leather. require just such temporal precision. Issue One of Scotland‘s new football magazine Fitlia. comes with that quality in abundance.

Interest in the Scottish national side is undoubtedly the highest it's been since. dare I even mention it. 1978. when Ally's Tartan Army wertt to Argentina to bring the World Cup back. only to be confronted by the likes of Iran and Peru laden with baskets of eggs ready to be rubbed into the Scots‘ faces.

More Scottish football is seen around the world thanks to L'ncle Rupert and his magic dish the downside being that all too much of it is rank. Current plans to reconstruct the game at home may bring much needed cash floating in for smaller clubs and the Old Firm hegemony may be showing signs of cracking. as they currently trail Hearts in the league.

lnto that context comes the first glossy mag exclusively devoted to all football things Scottish. courtesy of publishing company Brass Tacks. whose clients include the Royal Mail. the Department of Trade and Irtdustry and the Rugby Football l'nion. And about bloody time too. admits publisher liraser Allen.

‘The timing has probably been right for a couple of years.’ he says. ‘although

qualifying for the World Cup it: £3; 3 ;~: .{jytgjgy helps. as there’s a sense of i, 1,.” 3 it excitement about the ’3”; . (“if Scottish national team which 3:2“. hasn‘t always been the case 33;? «agg’ {gr} {fig-1‘4"- .5- over the past decade or so. “2/ ,

We've watched the growth “‘30? l A l

of football magazines

throughout the ['K and clearly they‘re all based in Iingland concerning themselves primarily with the English Premiership. For people in Scotland there‘s very little to read.'

Archie .\lac(‘iregor. co-l‘ounder and editor of the c‘titiiiti')"s most illustrious fan/inc Tllc’ .‘l/M’Ullllt’ (Jame. tackles the role of consultant editor and sees a broader picture into which l'i'llra will take its place.

‘Scotland has always prided itself on its separate identity on the football field.‘ .\lac(‘iregor says. ‘so

102 THEUST 5'. Wig-.139 31;.“

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Winning title: Scotland's glossy football monthly Fitba

it‘s even more relevant iii the present day. now we've had political devolution. to have a separate voice capturing the spirit of football in this country.’

That voice will also be armed with the same humour and knowledge which took T/It’ Absolute (Jame to the top of its league. ‘(‘ertainly. I've always thought there's been a gap in the market though I wouldn’t describe this as simply a glossy fanzinef insists .\lac(iregor. '()bviously it’ll be better resourced and it'll have a fan/irie’s irreverence. not taking things too seriously.‘

‘lt'll be a lot more irreverent than things like

l'i)Ill'l'rHH'Tll'U. adds Allen. 'It

r ,; gig; is a magazine. not a fan/ie. but

it'll have that raw spirit you get in families. We won't be

afraid to take the mickey out of


' So what can we expect from issue number one‘.’ Well. there is a piece on the colonisation of the game by the middle classes. a critical look at the super league proposals. and the launch of regular features such as the (‘raig Brown column. a fan‘s eye view of their own club and player profiles. With a bit of luck this welcome addition will last longer in the shops than our teams in liurope.

Fitba goes on sale on Fri 28 Nov priced £1.95. The second issue appears 30 Jan and thereafter on a monthly basis.



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