Green HeartsMy parents moved to Edinburgh when I was seven, and before that my dad and I used to go to the second half of Chesterfield Town games – they opened the gates at half-time and anyone could go in for free. He’d been a part-time Hearts fan when he was younger, and once back in Edinburgh he took it upon himself to go with me to Tynecastle a few times, not because he was hugely into football, but it’s just what you do with a young son.

There was a great spell in the mid-80s, and I was a pretty serious fan of players like John Colquhoun, Gary Mackay, Craig Levein, the absurdly-coiffured Henry Smith, and of course the immortal John Robertson. Like many a fair-weather fan, 1986 rather knocked the stuffing out of me, but I’ve been back a few times since. Not many. Just when the weather’s nice. And it’s not on telly. You know.

Then Romanov arrived. He saved the ground, for how long who knows, but screwed up the best team Hearts had had since the mid-80s, and (I’m going to try to be careful to avoid libel here) his decisions became increasingly flawed and perverse – the classic dictatorial mix of egomaniacal and bombastic. So sue me.

Today saw a new low. Defender Craig Thomson found himself on the sex offenders register last week, for perverse offences involving young girls. I’m not clear why he avoided a custodial sentence, personally, yet astonishingly he remains on the team. Queue here for the youth programme, parents. A role model for local young people anyone? The taunts from the Hibs fans next season will be “interesting” to say the least.

Then came the statement from the Board. Actually, it’s from Romanov alone, clearly dictated to some mewling functionary. Utter insanity. Let the final two paragraphs speak for themselves (they follow a bizarre blaming of the aforementioned Mackay, now an agent):

“Mafia are dragging kids into the crime, in order to blackmail and profit on them. It is not possible to separate these people from pedophiles, and you don’t need to do that. Each year we are forced to fight against these maniacs harder and harder. We are standing in their way not letting them manipulate the game of football in the way they want. As such they undermine us in every possible way they can.

“The task of the club is to tear these kids out of hands of criminals.”

Er, no. Not even vaguely in my name. I can’t support this club again until both this player and that owner are gone. I’m going green, just for just now, which is consistent with some of my other interests, and I’d urge other Hearts fans who feel aggrieved at the barbarism the club has fallen into to do the same. Mebbe Eddie and Kate can take me to the wrong end at Easter Road sometime. I’ll not be chanting along when Hearts come, though.