It would have been neat, but Bill Ramsey isn’t terribly unhappy his favorite soccer team — Celtic, of the Scottish Premier League — is not taking on archrival Rangers at Fenway Park tonight.
The vicious Glasgow foes were long the rumored opponents for tonight’s “Football at Fenway” game — the first soccer match at the park since July 9, 1968, and the latest in a recent string of non-baseball events there.
But Ramsey, the president of Boston’s Celtic Supporters Club, is hardly disappointed the rivalry — long infamous for sectarian violence — isn’t making its way to U.S. shores.
“I wouldn’t wish that on these people that are Americans,” he said.
Celtic will instead face Sporting CP, of Portugal’s first division. With the Scottish club featuring a healthy contingent of Irish fans, it’s a matchup that feels like home for a good number of Hub residents.
About 300 members of Nucleo Sportinguista Da Area Da Boston, a private club in Somerville for Sporting fans, will attend tonight’s game. One member, Fernando Pires, predicted the stands would be filled with 60 percent Sporting backers, even though it’s hardly unusual to see Celtic’s green and white striped jerseys on the streets of Boston.
“Portuguese people, they like soccer better than the Irish people,” Pires said.