Euan McGrory: If not Murrayfield, then why not Easter Road and Tynecastle?

In the end, there was jubilation and resignation.

Wednesday, 12th September 2018, 7:52 am
Fans at Hampden Park. Pic: SNS/Alan Harvey
Fans at Hampden Park. Pic: SNS/Alan Harvey

The Scottish Football Association’s decision to stick with Hampden instead of making a historic switch to Murrayfield has been met with constrasting responses.

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The celebrations in Glasgow’s Mount Florida - where many businesses rely on the visits of football supporters for a large part of their income - were matched in many homes near the national rugby stadium. The fear among residents was that visiting football fans - and supporters of the Old Firm in particular - would create a huge disruption to their lives.

But the sense of a missed opportunity hung in the air as well. It was there in the offices of the Scottish Rugby Union, who had made a very strong pitch to bring football’s home east, and within local businesses who had been eager to throw out the welcome mat for thousands of hungry and thirsty fans.

The hope now for sports fans in the Lothians will be that the SFA makes more use of Easter Road and Tynecastle for national team matches. Committing to Hampden might seem to make that less likely, but the sight of a half empty Hampden for Monday night’s match with Albania shows it wouldm make sense.