Is there any possible reaction to this other than a guffaw?

A farcical security blunder led to Manchester United’s final Premier League game of the season being cancelled on Sunday, after a private security firm forgot to remove a fake bomb taped to the back of a toilet door as part of a training exercise at Old Trafford.

The colossal error had sparked fears of another potential terrorist attack and resulted in the match against Bournemouth being called off as tens of thousands of fans were evacuated from one of the world’s most famous sports grounds.

Yes, yes, of course, there’s all sorts of second order reactions. Fire them, hang them, hope they’re insured and so on. But whose first reaction wasn’t somewhere between a guffaw and a belly laugh?

BTW, I predict that this incident will be used by some statist somewhere. The public sector having to come to the rescue of the private sector gone wrong again. Guardian or Indy is my bet. At which point someone might remind them of the CIA leaving Semtex in the short bus engine compartment after a training exercise…..

12 thoughts on “Is there any possible reaction to this other than a guffaw?”

  1. So Much For Subtlety

    Laughing is not the typical middle class English response though. We will have a stiff upper lip about these sort of things. We will insist that security is dreadfully serious and despite these little problems we all have to play up and play the game otherwise the terrorists will have won.

    So we will warmly endorse the police and security services because they are jolly decent chaps and we must all pull together.

    In most circumstances this is what makes Britain such a nice place to live.

  2. How dare you impune the wits of the CIA Tim.

    They are no phonies, no poseurs, no lightweight “Karate and Dog Services” private outfit.

    After all they left real Semtex on that kids bus–not some fake parcel with “Bomb” crayoned on the side.

    That’s true professionalism.

  3. I’m trying to work out in what world a terrorist would be leaving a bomb on the back of a toilet door. Small explosion contained in an area away from the general public. Very little bang for your buck, in casualty results.
    Not what they’re after, is it?

  4. @BiS “I’m trying to work out in what world a terrorist would be leaving a bomb on the back of a toilet door. ” To beat the sniffer dogs.

    Actually I think it is quite suspicious that happened at the stadium of the one team in the league playing the one match in the season when there is a real advantage from playing this match after all the others. Man United now know that they have to score every 4 minutes to get into the Champions League.

  5. @MrX
    That prompted the memory of someone in the high end hotel game, back in London, telling me about Arabs using the curtains for the purpose.
    Wouldn’t surprise me. Once went to a party held in a house, had previously been a letting to the Libyan Embassy. Someone had got the keys & taken advantage of it. What they’d managed to do to a large detached in the very much better part of Hampstead was beyond description.

  6. My gut reaction to this is ‘betting syndicate’ more than it is ‘incompetence’.

    bloke in spain – perhaps they put training bombs somewhere odd to see how thorough the searches are.

  7. “Actually I think it is quite suspicious that happened at the stadium of the one team in the league playing the one match in the season when there is a real advantage from playing this match after all the others.”

    That had occurred to me too. I know Utd had to win to have any chance, but if City had lost on Sunday, knowing that was a fact, rather than having it playing out at the same time, would be a big advantage going into the Bournemouth game at a later date.

  8. Bloke in Costa Rica

    I favour cock-up over conspiracy but this was a real howler. It’s tantamount to leaving a pair of forceps in a patient—although that does happen there are supposed to be protocols in place to ensure it doesn’t and the guilty parties are are usually pretty firmly castigated. Man Utd. have a prima facie case for taking the security firm to the cleaners.

  9. The guy who has put his hands up and admitted it was his error is an ex-Scotland Yard copper – doesn’t really fill one with a great deal of confidence that the police are very competent. One would have thought that the first rule of putting fake bombs in public places for training purposes would be to have strict protocols on how many were used and accounting for them afterwards.

  10. Bloke in Costa Rica

    Dunno about ex-rozzers but an ex-Forces guy would have known how to make sure the same number of gizmos was booked back into stores as was taken out of ’em. Or at least the QM running the show should have.

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