Date: 14th May 2008 at 10:20pm
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I really, really didn’t think that this guy’s commentary could possibly get any worse, but I think auld Archie MacPherson has surpassed even his most ‘superlative’ performances in Rangers matches gone by at tonight’s UEFA Cup final in Manchester.

I’m quite sure that those of us with the misfortune of tuning into STV tonight all expected an evening of salivating over how great and wonderful that Walter’s boys are, but the extent to which they took it tonight was, as Archie himself would say, ‘totally astonishing’.

I think it’s fair enough to have biased commentators when it comes to European ties and I really don’t have a problem with them having pundits and co-commentators with predominantly Rangers connections for tonight’s match. After all this was a BIG game for them and they are supposed to be representing Scotland in Europe, even if the songs being belted out by their fans would lead you to believe otherwise.

But even then, with Archie tonight it was a bit like asking a guy with Tourette’s to go out there and swear constantly for 90 minutes!

‘This is an astonishing atmosphere – it’s like we’re in a wave of….earthquakes’ he beamed as the 350,000 Rangers fans in the 48,000 capacity stadium jumped up and down like….well, like people jumping up and down.

To be fair to Archie he is a guy who does genuinely appear to love his football and it’s much better having commentators who get carried away than those who are capable of literally boring you to death with their monotone utterings – like Paul Mitchell on the BBC. So perhaps being overly critical of him tonight is a bit harsh, especially given the fact that he’ll probably never get the opportunity to commentate on his favourite team in a European final again.

Some of the comments truly were incredible though. There was one particular incident in the second half when a Russian player went down after clearly being elbowed in the face (accidentally), and even after the replay had demonstrated this he was encouraging the guy to ‘cut out his nonsense’, purely because it was wasting valuable time that the Gers could be using to try and equalise!

Then after a certain amount of time had passed, when frustration had clearly set in, he stopped referring to Zenit St Petersburg by their name and simply used the word ‘them’ instead! Could you imagine the uproar in this country if we tuned into an English commentator giving it that sort of behaviour?!

Ah well, in the end you just have to smile don’t you? After all, as we’ve already established, Archie is a big football man and any genuine lovers of the great sport would have been satisfied that the result in the UEFA Cup final tonight was the right one….wouldn’t they Archie?!