“We sincerely apologise for this error…”

Years ago the showbands used to play every night of the week in a different part of the country. Sometimes, north, sometimes south. Sometimes in an Catholic area, sometimes Protestant. A friend who used to play in one, told me a possibly apocryphal story about one particular night, when the trombonist hadn’t been needed for the last song. Having been on the road for weeks – possibly months – he grabbed a kip. Then, as the night ended, another band member shoved him roughly and just said, “Anthem!” He stood up and launched into the Soldier’s Song. Apparently you could have heard a pin drop. It was an Orange Hall. It seems that someone at top games company EA had fallen asleep so to speak, when they programmed their football game to play same song when the simulated Northern Ireland team won. Hat tip: TAFKABO.

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty


    I wonder if they used Robin Livingstone as a consultant?

  • RepublicanStones

    Mick, is that sound your hands rubbing together or the hornets nest you ‘aul devil you ?

  • Prionsa Eoghan

    Won’t this please as many in the six counties as annoy? Dammned if you do and all that, or have I mixed my contexts up ;¬)

  • Chris Donnelly

    “…hopefully it will be changed as soon as possible.” G Campbell

    Somehow I doubt EA will be rushing to rectify this mistake, given how small the ‘offended’ market is on a global scale.

    In any case, maybe EA are onto something????

  • Eireannach Saolta

    Reminds me of the story my day told me how if showband didnt know what anthem to play they’d see what brand of ice cream was on sale… HP or Walls


    It would be relatively easy to fix with a downloadable patch.
    If the Our Wee Country website put their minds to it, they could persuade them to do it.
    Games companies are much more sensitive to bad press than other media.

  • RepublicanStones

    Maybe they were planning UEFA Euro 2016 and had a mix up?

    (Where’s me coat?)

  • foreign correspondent

    Brilliant. I hate football, and computer games and I´d still nearly buy it. Can they zoom onto the expression on the faces of the NI fans when it starts playing? 🙂

  • Mac

    Brilliant. Suppose it gives Norn iron fans some time to get used to it, if George Best’s wishes are adhered to and we have a proper Ireland football team.

  • Bemused

    Anything that annoys, upsets, humiliates or otherwise jolts from their grim little-englander mentality the ‘are we a country’ brigade is good by me….Well done EA Sports.

  • Rory

    Because of this blunder I would imagine that sales of this game are unlikely to take off in those countries where there is a deep understanding and appreciation of Norn Iron and its politics, traditions and culture. Which means I suppose that EA don’t have much to worry about.

  • Mick Fealty

    Humour guys… Remember? Big in the Sixties? Oh yeah, I remember now… We ALL lost it about the summer of 1969…

    Night all…

  • joeCanuck


  • 0b101010

    I wonder if they’ll put Londonderry Air in instead or just God Save the Queen? If the latter, will they add the rabid shouts of “No Surrender” in the middle for that nice realistic touch?

    Wouldn’t recommend buying any of EA’s tournament titles, as they’re usually overpriced for a rushed, cut-down product, but I’d almost be tempted to buy a copy for a laugh.

    I only they hope they stuck to the ranking stats and made Northern Ireland play better than the Republic for a change…

  • Croker

    EA might be merely be engaged in some forward planning. With Windsor Park in need of major refurbishment on health and safety grounds alone, no agreement on the location of a new stadium, then its not implausible that “Norn Irn” could end up playing their international games in Croke Park where, in a grateful gesture of courtesy to their hosts, the Soldiers Song is played…….

  • “The game may seem politically unrefined to be charging £39.99 but its makers say it offers interactive celebrations, dynamic rain and mud, and excitable team managers on the sideline as well.” .. BBC

    How do they do that? Does it pour out when you open the DVD drawer?

  • agh

    As the GSTQ has been played recently with no probs whatsoever at croker, I don;t see any reason why NI couldn’t play there – good idea croker.

  • rabelais

    throw ’em all on the bonfire…

  • This is what Howard Wells must have been working on when he told a potential major sponsor of an All Ireland soccer league during the week, according to reports, that the IFA had more pressing priorities…

  • Martin

    Another version of the story has the band been asked for “The Anthem” and they forgot where they were. Suddenly one of the band spots a sign for HB ice cream and immediately calls for … .

  • arcelik

    Thanks for the suggestion
    youtube, video seyret