Football, Gone but not forgotten

Jesus Is Just A Spanish Boy’s Name

Hearts and Celtic go head to head this weekend in last season’s delayed Scottish Cup Final, a game that both teams will want to win but one that neither probably expected to manifest.

Hearts, currently plying their trade in tier two (to coin a contemporary phrase) could do with the win, as could Celtic, for so long the dominant force in Scottish football but now a club where the manager’s jacket hangs on a decidedly shoogly-looking peg. A cup win might go some way to thwart off the vultures (and Green Brigade) who are currently gathering with furrowed brow and thunderous, entitled fury outside Celtic Park. I’m neither Celtic nor Hearts-minded (nor do I have an affiliation to the other hairy arsed Glasgow cheek of Scottish football) so while I won’t lose any sleep over who wins and who loses, I’ll maybe crack a wry smile should a maroon ribbon be tied around the cup come full time.

The real winners of Sunday’s final won’t be the happy set of supporters, or a relieved management team, or a grateful chairperson and boardroom. The real winners will be Tiny Changes, the charity formed in the wake of Frightened Rabbit‘s Scott Hutchison’s death a couple of years ago.

Named after a line in the band’s ‘Heads Roll Off’ – “While I’m alive, I’ll make tiny changes to Earth” – the line become something of a mission statement for fans in the days and weeks following the singer’s death.

Frightened RabbitHeads Roll Off

Initially launched in the Scottish Borders where the band began, Tiny Changes provides support and early intervention to young minds struggling to cope with life across Scotland.

Clearly, in an age when mental health in young people, and men in particular, can lead to the most drastic of outcomes, it’s a very worthwhile charity.

Scott Hutchsion was a lifelong Jambo, even singing The Hearts Song at the opening of the new main stand at Tynecastle three seasons ago, and the club have honoured him in the most spectacular of ways.

As they did in the semi-final – after first petitioning the reluctant dinosaurs and decision-makers who make up the Scottish Football Association – Hearts have once again teamed up with Bands FC to produce a bespoke run of warm-up shirts that the players will wear ahead of the kick off. Featuring a Frightened Rabbits-inspired club crest against the famous maroon shirt, it’s a unique football/music crossover.

Players’ jerseys from the semi-final were auctioned off after the game and all monies  – almost £35,000  – donated to Tiny Changes. Likewise, the same will happen following the final. Some serious money – especially if Hearts run out winners – will be going to a small charity with big intentions. What a brilliant thing to happen.

Click to donate to Tiny Changes