Monday, July 18, 2011

STV presenter attacked by Celtic fans

STV presenter attacked by Celtic fans at Parkhead

The Scotsman
May 15, 1998


JIM White, the presenter of television's Scotsport, was attacked by Celtic fans outside Parkhead stadium on Saturday shortly after the Glasgow club clinched the Premier League title.

About 15 supporters punched, kicked and spat on him as he tried to get into his car in the club car park an hour after the match.

Some of the fans damaged the car by kicking it and banging on the windows as White and two Scottish Television colleagues tried to drive away, his spokesman said yesterday.

White suffered bruising and was so badly shaken that he had to cancel a charity appearance at a British Lung Foundation function in Glasgow on Saturday evening. White is a well-known Rangers supporter whose pro-Rangers gaffes have antagonised Celtic fans.

Malcolm Brown, a spokesman for White, said: "Jim White was with another STV reporter and a cameraman and they were trying to put equipment in the car when they were confronted by about 15 so- called Celtic supporters. "Jim White was the only one attacked, but it was a violent attack. He was kicked, punched and spat upon and was particularly badly shaken up. He was bruised and fairly badly battered.

They managed to get into the car and it was attacked, but they managed to drive off." White did not report the incident to Strathclyde Police or Celtic because he did not "want to make it worse for himself," added Mr Brown. "The way Jim is looking at it is that it is in the past, he wishes it had never happened, but it was unfortunate that it did happen. "He was bruised, but nothing was broken although it was traumatic.

I am sure anyone would say it was a fairly despicable and cowardly attack and the people he feels sorry for are the people he has helped out in the past few years at the British Lung Foundation. The people who did it should look at themselves and be disgusted with themselves."

White was due to compere the Red Balloon Ball at the Glasgow Hilton Hotel on Saturday but the organiser was informed at 6:55pm that he had taken ill. He carried out the same function for the charity last year.

Mr Brown, of the public relations firm, Carnegie Sports International, added: "That was fairly short notice, but Jim was bruised, battered and in a fairly shocked state and did not feel up to it."

Despite the attack, White presented Scotsport on Sunday.

Jill MacRae, the Scottish manager of the British Lung Foundation, discovered from The Scotsman only yesterday that White had been attacked. She said: "We were told at 6:55pm that he had taken ill, but we didn't have any details. Everyone just assumed that he was feeling blue because Rangers had lost {the league}, but that is obviously very unfair because he was poorly. "This is awful. This should have been a fairly happy event for everyone, but this has happened to him. I don't know why he was picked upon, but he is a public figure."

The Scotsport anchorman is nicknamed Jim "Red, Blue and" White because of his allegiance to Rangers.

On Radio Clyde in February he caused controversy after Rangers scored against Dunfermline when he said: "Let's hope they score some more goals."

An STV spokeswoman confirmed the attack yesterday. She said: "As a company, we are extremely concerned about what has happened to Jim. It is certainly not what we would expect at Celtic Park."

A Celtic spokesman said: "We are disappointed to hear of this incident and will give our full assistance to the appropriate authorities." It is understood the club will contact White to express to him its concern about the attack.
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