Football fans in pre-referendum Scotland: folk devils, space and place.

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This research explores contemporary Scottish football identities in the period between the re-opening of the Scottish parliament and the up-coming referendum vote on independence/separation . Specifically it discusses some commonly expressed attitudes and opinions of a selection of football supporters from three of Scotland’s professional clubs based in the country’s two largest cities of Edinburgh and Glasgow. The research exposes the multi-layered nature of Scottish football identity revealing a growing disdain among some non-Old Firm fans for the Old Firm clubs of Rangers and Celtic. With the established Scottish Parliament providing a degree of political autonomy and the upcoming independence referendum looming, ‘becoming a nation again’ has precipitated Scotland football fans seeking more positive expressions of identity in which to express themselves. This has resulted in ‘sectarianism’ and the Old Firm increasingly becoming a common folk devil for football fans in twenty first century Scotland.
Original languageEnglish
Article number11
Pages (from-to)207-229
JournalEast Asian Sport Thoughts. The International Journal of the Sociology of Sport
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2013


  • space and place


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