SECRET SHRINE TO IS FINAL NAIL IN EVIL TERRORISTS GORAM'S COFFIN; Religion Turned Andy into a Bigot, Says Wife

By Lalani, Shiraz | The Mirror (London, England), February 8, 1999 | Go to article overview

SECRET SHRINE TO IS FINAL NAIL IN EVIL TERRORISTS GORAM'S COFFIN; Religion Turned Andy into a Bigot, Says Wife


Lalani, Shiraz, The Mirror (London, England)


ANDY GORAM'S international comeback plans were in tatters last night after his links with an evil Loyalist terror group were exposed.

Ex-Rangers ace Goram was pictured holding up a United Volunteer Force banner on a trip to Ulster.

And his estranged wife Tracy told how a room at his home is a sick shrine to Loyalist gunmen.

The basement room at the villa-style mansion is packed with UVF pictures and memorabilia.

Pride of place goes to a presentation flute and a framed picture of three masked gunmen.

Also on display are Red Hand of Ulster ties and awards from Loyalist supporters clubs in the Province.

One of them is engraved with the telling message "Andy 'The Flute' Goram".

Goram, who walked out on Scotland's international squad just before the World Cup after earning 43 caps, was believed to be in line for a surprise recall.

He is due to meet national coach Craig Brown this week to bury the hatchet, but yesterday Brown hinted he's preparing to slam the door firmly in the keeper's face.

He said: "I'm in London and have not had the chance to see the Sunday papers, so it's difficult to comment on something I haven't seen.

"But as I have said, I will take all the relevant factors into consideration

and that might be one of them."

The Catholic Church in Scotland last night urged coach Brown to take action immediately and show the goalie the red card.

Spokesman Father Tom Connelly said: "These are surprising actions by someone with such a public profile.

"I hope Mr Brown asks if this is really the kind of image one of his international players should have."

But senior members of the Progressive Unionist Party, the political wing of the UVF, said Goram deserved praise for his fundraising work in the Loyalist communities of Belfast.

They claimed Goram - who is a regular visitor to Belfast where he drinks in the city's Avenue One Bar, a haunt of UVF killer Michael Stone - raised cash for disabled children and not terrorist activity.

PUP chairman William Smith said Goram had done nothing wrong by drinking in bars popular with UVF supporters and decorated with UVF paraphernalia.

He said: "That would not be unusual in our communities. Andy Goram is not stand-offish. He will have a drink with anyone."

But the goalkeeper's pal, Belfast businessman Jim Gray, is one of killer Stone's close friends.

Loyalists may claim that Goram's visits to Protestant bars and clubs are innocent, but it is well known to security forces that pubs and clubs are the terror bases of the paramilitaries

Bedecked in Royalist and Unionist imagery, many of Belfast's Loyalist bars also proudly display prized photographs of Rangers Football Club.

But the portraits of the Queen, Union Jacks and red, white and blue bunting betray the sinister presence of the terrorists.

For three decades these small bars have been used to plot murders and bombings, to recruit gunmen and murderers and to co-ordinate the waves of bloody sectarian violence.

The backrooms and storerooms of some became the innocently named "Romper Rooms", where abducted victims were tortured and murdered as men and women drank yards away. …

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