It's a year to the day since a Biblical downpour drowned the Oak Mall. Read about it.
Today is Round One of the 2014-15 Scottish Challenge Cup, the trophy contested by the clubs of the Championship, and Leagues One and Two, plus a couple of nonleague teams to make an easily divisible number. Last year Morton were eliminated by Annan Athletic in this round. It was the first in a series of unforeseen disasters (four losses to Alloa; 10 - 2 drubbing by Hamilton) that culminated in the Ton's relegation to League One.
This time Morton have drawn Spartans FC, inaugural Lowland League champions. Spartans have to be the favourites to move up to League Two as soon as the SPFL is opened up to promotion from below. Wasn't that supposed to begin soon?
Spartans played in last year's Challenge Cup too, beating Threave Rovers in the preliminary round, before losing 4 - 0 to Queen of the South.
Sponsorhip of this competition has passed from the pawnbroker Ramsdens to the oil and gas industry supplier Petrofac, so for the next while the trophy will go by the name Petrofac Training Cup.
How have Greenock Morton done in the First Round of the Challenge Cup over the past decade?
2013-14. Lost to Annan Athletic.
2012-13. Beat Albion Rovers.
2011-12. Beat Stranraer.
2010-11. Beat Dumbarton.
2009-10. Beat Dumbarton.
2007-08. Beat Livingston.
2006-07. Beat Dumbarton.
2005-06. Beat Gretna.
2004-05. Beat Arbroath.
So a Morton win today is within reason.
2014-15 is probably the final opportunity for Rangers to win the Challenge (Petrofac Training) Cup. Hibs and Hearts won't have too many chances either. Hearts play Annan today. Rangers and Hibs face each other in about a week and a half.
[Morton win 1 - 0. Goal by Cameron O'Neil.]
UEFA Champions League this week: Celtic 4 - 0 KR. Celtic move on to the next round.
Europa League: Stjarnan 3 - 2 Motherwell; Groningen* 1 - 2 Aberdeen; St Johnstone 5 - 4 Luzern on penalty kicks. Aberdeen and St Johnstone advance; Motherwell are out.
Many persons who have large houses of stone or brick, now adopt the plan of heating them with hot air, which is conveyed by means of pipes into the rooms. An ornamented, circular grating admits the heated air, by opening or shutting the grates. The furnace is in the cellar, and is made large enough to allow of a considerable quantity of wood being put in at once.
A house thus heated is kept at summer heat in the coldest weather; and can be made cooler by shutting the grates in any room.
The temperature of houses heated thus is very pleasant, and certainly does not seem so unhealthy as those warmed by metal stoves, besides there being far less risk from fire.
Catherine Parr Traill, The Canadian Settler's Guide (1855), page 20, NCL edition.
This is Guy Clark, Lord- Lieutenant of Renfrewshire. In Canada you have a Governor General, who stands in for the Queen at national ceremonies, and ten Lieutenant Governors, who stand in at provincial government ceremonies. Mr Guy Clark stands in for the Queen inRenfrewshire. As Renfrewshire actually no longer exists except for ceremonial purposes you'd think that handing out the Renfrewshire Cup, emblematic of county football supremacy, would be at or near the top of Guy Clark's to do list. But can you see it in last year's itinerary?
St Mirren meet Greenock Morton at Cappielow today for the playing of the 2014 Renfrewshire Cup.
Morton advanced to the final by beating Viewfield 13 - 1 Monday. St Mirren appear thanks to their 10 - 0 victory over Port Glasgow Old Boys Union on Thursday. Morton -- and you don't hear this said very often -- are the current cup holders. [Morton 0 - 1 St Mirren.]
Two weeks ago Morton chairman Douglas Rae was quoted as saying Greenock Morton owe his holding company £1.8 million, but that the debt will never be called in as long as he lives. He is 83. The plan instead is to whittle away at the number by training and selling young talent. So now the purpose of the Morton academy is to service the debt rather than to build a winning team. Worked for the Montreal Expos.
The UEFA Champions League second qualifying round, first leg: Celtic 1 - 0 Icelandic champion KR.
And in the Europa League:
Motherwell 2 - 2 Stjarnan
Aberdeen 0 - 0 Groningen
Luzern 1 - 1 St Johnstone
J3 is back after the Emperor's Cup break. Tomorrow Grulla Morioka visit Fujieda MYFC, the club funded by online subscription. MYFC literally stands for My Football Club. Entering the second half of the schedule Grulla are mid-table with 7 wins, 3 draws and 7 losses. [MYFC 0 - 1 Grulla Morioka.]