Legendary filmmaker hails ‘barbaric’ Celtic-Rangers rivalry

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German director and screenwriter Werner Herzog has spoken of his admiration for the Old Firm rivalry between Celtic and Rangers.

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The legendary filmmaker revealed himself to be particularly taken with the “barbaric” nature of the conflict, which he likens to the early battles in Scottish history.

The country’s most high-profile fixture has not had its critics to seek through the years as its existence is intertwined with Scotland’s sectarian problem. It does, however, seem to have attracted one notable observer from afar.

Speaking to David Goldblatt on “The Cinema Of The Pitch”, the first episode of the Game of Our Lives podcast, Herzog admitted a fondness for how British crowds react at football matches, particularly those in Glasgow.

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German director Werner Herzog. Picture: Getty

German director Werner Herzog. Picture: Getty

He said: “They have this very ancient chanting and there is something about English and Scottish crowds which is, and I say this with necessary caution barbaric.

“Meaning barbaric doesn’t mean like barbarism of war, atrocities. I mean barbarism in terms of early battles of Scottish tribal people against God knows whom.

“[It’s] a form of knowing where you come from, ‘this is my tribe and it’s Celtic Glasgow and the other one is Glasgow Rangers’ and there are two tribal groups meeting each other in chant, chanting obscenities at each other.”

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