Bloody Scotland 2019: Scotland v England Match Captains Revealed

I can’t believe there is only one week to go until Bloody Scotland 2019 officially gets underway. This is one of those festivals that I book my hotel for the following year the moment the dates are confirmed, typically before I even leave the current festival. The one thing I have never been to in all my time of attending is the Scotland v England grudge football match. I think this is possibly the year that will change, so it is my great pleasure to share the latest press release from Bloody Scotland in which we find out just who will be leading the two teams into battle …


Bloody Scotland Team Managers, Craig Roberston (Scotland) and Luca Veste (England) today revealed that their teams will again be captained by Chris Brookmyre and Mark Billingham for the annual Bloody Scotland Crime Writers Football Match which will take place at 2pm on Saturday 21 September.

The football match was the brainchild of Craig Robertson in 2014 and the first year Ian Rankin, Mark Billingham, Chris Brookmyre and Martyn Waites all signed up to play.

Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

Following a resounding victory for Scotland Craig Robertson said:

“In a drunken, triumphalist haze we waved our English friends a fond and patronising farewell, sending them homeward to think again. Unfortunately, they did think again and they came back two years later and gubbed us.”

The football has taken place on the Bowling Green at Cowane’s Hospital ever since though following a dispute when Thomas Enger (a Norwegian semi-professional footballer) joined the Scottish team new rules were drawn up. Teams now have to be made up exclusively of Scottish crime writers and English crime writers. No publishers, no editors, no agents, and definitely no professional footballers. One highlight for the English team this year is former Gladiator, turned crime writer, Mark Griffin.

It is free to watch and in recent years has had the addition of a pop-up gin bar courtesy of Stirling Gin who provide Bloody Scotland cocktails for the fans – and sometimes for the players! So why not come along and watch the fun. Tickets are still available for some of the events at Bloody Scotland too so head over to the website to find out more.

About Bloody Scotland

Ian Rankin, Val McDermid and Denise Mina at Bloody Scotland, Scotland’s International Crime Writing Festival in Stirling on the 08/09/2017. Paul Reich

Bloody Scotland is Scotland’s International Crime Writing Festival, providing a showcase for the best crime writing from Scotland and the world, unique in that it was set up by a group of Scottish crime writers in 2012. The festival uses a number of atmospheric, historic venues in Stirling’s Old Town setting it apart from other literary festivals. The festival runs from 20th-22nd September. Full information & tickets at

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