Socialist Worker

Fans say no to the Football Lads Alliance in Scotland

Issue No. 2581

Football Lads Alliance supporters in London

Football Lads Alliance supporters in London (Pic: Guy Smallman)


The racist Football Lads Alliance (FLA) is set to march alongside a group called Veterans Against Terrorism in Edinburgh on Saturday.

The FLA has already held two large demonstrations in London, featuring racist chants and speakers. It claims to be against terrorism, but is building a dangerous Islamophobic street movement.

Stand Up To Racism (SUTR) and others had already called an anti-racist event in Edinburgh at the same time. Saturday is also the day of the Scottish TUC’s annual anti-racist march in Glasgow.

An SUTR statement raising concerns about the FLA march has been signed by trade union bodies, campaigns and politicians. These include the football-focused Show Racism the Red Card.

SUTR supporters leafletted four of the six Scottish Premiership matches taking place last weekend, at the grounds of Hearts, Hibernian, Dundee and Rangers.

A history of anti-Catholic sectarianism among some Rangers fans makes them a key target for the FLA. But campaigners got an overwhelmingly good response.

Jim Main of Glasgow SUTR told Socialist Worker, “Most Rangers fans were quite happy we were doing it, and we got some very positive comments.

“One of those leafletting with us was a Rangers fan in his top, who had leafletted his coach on the way and went in to watch the match afterwards. It’s only a minority who are racist.

“Our activity gave confidence to those Rangers fans who are anti-racist and might be arguing with their mates.”

For details of the Edinburgh event and Glasgow demonstration, go to bit.ly/2zSTYLi

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