Brian Rice wants wind meters after Clyde vs Celtic clash went ahead

By David Walton

February 10, 2020

Hamilton Academical manager Brian Rice has called for wind meters to be introduced to Scottish football.

Clyde vs Celtic went ahead despite lashing rain and heavy winds initially threatening to have the game postponed. It also ended up having a huge effect on the game.

Celtic were playing against the wind in the first half, and it limited both sides’ ability to get the ball in the air. Long-range passes also often drifted away from their intended target. The game followed similar circumstances between BSC Glasgow and Hibernian on Saturday.

Hamilton boss Brian Rice (right) (Callum Landells/Getty Images)

Rice was in attendance at the Hibs game, and he also used the Celtic match as an example of why wind meters need to be used. Speaking in comments published by the BBC, Rice said the following:

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“I can’t believe in this day and age where we have goalline technology, VAR, all these tools to improve the game and we don’t have a wind meter. The worst conditions you can play in is the wind and I think it has been proven.

“There must be a wind meter, something we can use because it just destroys the game. The players don’t like it, the fans won’t come out in it, the game is a lottery.

“I was at the Hibs game. A complete farce. Fair play to the two teams trying to make a go of it and to the fans for turning up in horrendous conditions. Falkirk versus Hearts on Saturday night was the same and I believe Clyde versus Celtic was the same.”

Wind meters would ensure fairness

There’s nothing worse in football than a lack of entertainment. That is, after all, what the game is for. Yet when games are played in especially blustery conditions, it takes away from the quality of the game.

When heavy winds occur, it’s like Rice says – it can become a lottery. It doesn’t become all about skill. Granted, you can say that this just adds to the excitement of the game, but it also lacks fairness.

With wind meters in place, a precedent could be set. We could have fixtures postponed if the winds are of a certain speed. It would be a simple solution and would stop teams from having to play in conditions that rivals may have had games postponed for in the past.

Celtic celebrate winning the Scottish Cup (Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

Yesterday against Clyde it wasn’t too chaotic due to the severe gulf in class between the sides. However, if we’re playing the likes of Rangers or even tough trips to the likes of Aberdeen or Hibernian, it becomes more of a lottery than the game yesterday was. If our cup run was ended due to a dodgy gust of wind, for example, it would be a massive injustice.

Rice is onto something. Playing in blistering conditions very rarely makes for a good game of football. Yes, it shouldn’t mean that players are over-protected from a small breeze here or there. However, when games are being severely affected by it then something should be done.

There are no signs of anything coming into place anytime soon, but it’s hardly the worst idea.