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Home: Non-League Football Discussion: Other British Isles Football:
Replacing Gretna?

 

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Veteran
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Jul 10, 2008, 2:39 PM

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Re: [cope1] Replacing Gretna? [In reply to] Can't Post or

I think a lot of posters are making the dangerous assumption that a pyramid is good and not having one is bad. Ceratinly the way things have gone with the English pyramid this summer - may just be dreadful and incosistent administration ? - I am beginning to wonder.

Certainly there should be an open avenue for clubs who wish to do so to progress, or indeed decline naturally, but we have become obsessed with ground grading, taking too much notice of the views of leagues clubs wish to leave and accepting new "big" clubs at intermediate levels rather than the bottom. Maybe Scotland just needs to sort out its non-league football into one unified structure, or at least rectify the anomaly where Junior Leagues are clearly better than "Senior" ones, and reduce the size of its national league ?


prorege
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Jul 10, 2008, 2:40 PM

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Re: [cope1] Replacing Gretna? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

The demographic / gender profile of the support at many Junior clubs is really worrying. And many of them do not encourage younger people to get involved, perhaps seeing them as a 'threat'. A few clubs have become 'Community Clubs', with youth teams and so on, which helps. A few have sufficient appeal that they will continue to attract a younger support, but not many. Lots of Junior clubs have survived for many years with virtually no support, so they may struggle on indefinitely.

Wages are variable. The top Junior clubs often pay more than some of the Scottish League Second and Third Division clubs. It's hard to come up with definite figures because many Juniors get big signing on fees and low weekly wages, but averaging it out the very top Junior earners might be on 300 per week. Remember this is all part-time. That figure would apply to a very few players - typical Super League wages would average out at 20-80 per week. Further down the Juniors guys might get a 200 signing on fee, then nothing for the rest of the season. In fact, they might get the promise of a 200 signing on fee, then nothing for the rest of the season! Some clubs will pay expenses for travelling to training and some do not.

In the SFL wages are variable, but the following (all part time) will not be far off the mark:

Division Three (from 50 to 200 per week, depending on age / experience)
Shire have abandoned their 10 per week strategy, and now pay in line with the rest of the clubs.

Division Two (from 100 to 300 per week, again depending on age / experience)

For next season all the teams in Division One will be full-time. Wages at Ross County will be in the 350-600 per week range; Dundee, St Johnstone and Dunfermline will have some players on 1500 per week).

Why do the SFA not put their foot down? I suppose it's because that constitutionally they are a democratic organisation. The Chief Executive is merely a servant of the SFA Council or Board, which is made up of people protecting their own little empires. It's not really changed much since Victorian times.

What they could do is target their grant aid more specifically at clubs who show ambition. The real mavericks are the Scottish Junior FA who have operated in a parallel universe for generations - the SFA should be offering incentives to them to 'join the fold'. But the SFA's income has plummeted because of failure to qualify for European Championships and World Cups, so they don't have much cash to throw about.


coops
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Jul 10, 2008, 4:48 PM

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Post #78 of 89 (3589 views)
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Re: [Veteran] Replacing Gretna? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

I think a lot of posters are making the dangerous assumption that a pyramid is good and not having one is bad. Ceratinly the way things have gone with the English pyramid this summer - may just be dreadful and incosistent administration ? - I am beginning to wonder.

True, but then again Scotland does have the chance to start with a clean slate.



Tom
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Jul 11, 2008, 5:22 PM

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Post #79 of 89 (3510 views)
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Re: [coops] Replacing Gretna? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

There was an article in The Herald relating to this (in which yours truely gets quoted) - link



thePyramid.info including the Pyramid Poster


vienna1964
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Jul 11, 2008, 8:58 PM

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Post #80 of 89 (3478 views)
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Re: [Tom] Replacing Gretna? [In reply to] Can't Post or

I am becoming quite excited by the current positivism coming out of Scotland at the moment. However, I do think that there should be no 'quick-fix' knee-jerk reaction and that things should be evolved slowly and surely, step by step by step.

I think that it will be important to not be thrusting extraordinary change upon any of the three main organisations (Seniors, Juniors & Amateurs) in very short order - just for the sake of change... so I do not see an immediate amalgamation of all these clubs into one huge League in just the space of a single season, nor even over (say) five seasons.

Rather, I see cause for a slow evolution from within each seperately... with the Juniors perhaps gently altering their main structure into perhaps just three or four Super-Leagues, with the outfall from this process bolstering the nether Divisions, whilst in the Seniors there should be some sensible recruitment in order to formalise either three or four Divisions likewise. Once this has come to pass, then there may be the possibility of further 'rationalisation' via mergers, allowing perhaps for the formation of two Super-Regional 'Conferences' - which i think should be the absolute zenith of what should be attempted outside of the SFL & SPL.

In fact, whilst this is all ongoing, I can see much cause for evolution within the top-42 themselves. I am aware that there is some movement towards a two-tier SPL of ten teams each Division being mooted, but before this occurrence, I see a recourse to increasing the SFL Division One to 18 teams and converting SFL Divisions Two & Three into two regionalised Second Divisions of ten teams apiece. This would immediately allow an influx of eight new non-League teams and thus effectively give current SFL sides a bit of a 'cushion' against the possibility of relegation... presuming that they manage to keep their noses ahead of the newbies !

I would guess that eight teams would not be available all at one time, although one may conceivably allow that there are already four who would like to make that jump - and an intermediate situation perhaps incrementing D1 to 14 or D1 & D2 to 12 each could pave the way for a further four newbies to be found a few seasons hence. The switch to regionalisation at the bottom of the SFL cannot happen soon enough in my opinion and whilst four-down relegation from a 14 team D1 is a little over-zealous, an interim arrangement of two down plus two in play-outs alongside the promotion of two champions plus a further three from each regional to play-off would be acceptable for a few seasons.

Eventually, eight teams will be taken by the SPL and that would return the SFL to a 10 & 10/10 situation, which could be immediately boosted by taking another four entries - either immediately or after a season to make 14 & 10/10... returning to 18 & 10/10 again a few years along.

Note upon each expansion occasion, there will be an intake of four teams net, which may well preclude the requirement for any relegation from the SFL over this extended period... although this would not be an impossibility if required. I'd imagine that election/re-election would remain the order of the day over this period - being quite adequate whilst every few seasons a new intake would be accepted anyway.

This time period might well have then allowed the upward redistributions/mergers between the other Senior/Junior/Amateur organisations - which by now should at least have produced a very healthy set of 'Conferences' beneath the SFL, each with its own set of feeders - probably two or even three-Divisions-deep, depending upon area.

How many Conferences to feed into the two SFL regionals ? Initially likely three or four... if four, then reducing perhaps to two at a later stage and after supplying enough new teams to rebolster the SFL regionals to (say) 16 teams apiece - which means a final SFL intake of another twelve top non-Leaguers.

At this point in time... the whole organisation would be readied for direct promotion and relegation from the very top to the bottom !

Note that at each stage, this slow evolution will allow teams to be able to 'opt out' at any time if they do not wish to extend themselves further geographically than they are used to, yet it gives them exactly that opportunity in nice easy steps should they then alter their way of thinking.



I APOLOGISE UNRESERVEDLY TO EACH AND EVERY PERSON ON THIS FORUM WHO HAS FELT LET-DOWN BY MY INIMICABLE AND DEPLORABLE BEHAVIOUR OF OCTOBER 28th. 2009. ESPECIALLY TO BRIAN, WHO IS A MARVELLOUS GENTLEMAN AND IS THE LAST PERSON HERE WHO SHOULD HAVE TO PUT UP WITH SUCH UNDESERVED PERSONAL CHARACTER-ASSASSINATION. LET IT BE KNOWN THAT A PRIVATE PERSONAL APOLOGY WAS SENT, BUT WAS SEEN INSUFFICIENT. FAIR ENOUGH.


reg dunn
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Jul 14, 2008, 9:41 AM

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Post #81 of 89 (3295 views)
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Re: [vienna1964] Replacing Gretna? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Geography and population suggests three regional leagues below national level in Scotland - North, West and East - roughly on the same geography as the current Junior Superleaguess. Take a look at some of the discussions on Pie and Bovril - most posters there have come to this conclusion. Whether or not some of the weaker SFL2/3 sides ought to be in reginoal leagues, not to mention whether they could be persuaded to go there, is a seaparate point.

If all considerations of politics could be left aside, a good way to get to that stage would be to a) feed the North juniors into the Highland League b) somehow merge the EoS into the East Junior setup c) promote one team from each of the three regional laeagues into anational league. Teams which don't want to go up can just be passedc over,in the same way a at Step 4/5 or 6/7 in England .


rdp
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Jul 14, 2008, 8:10 PM

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Post #82 of 89 (3200 views)
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Re: [reg dunn] Replacing Gretna? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

 Ideally scotland needs a premier league and 2 national divisions of 16 clubs each. Below those 48 cloubs should be a pyramid split into East,West and North. The Champions of those leagues (Grounds permiting) could replace the bottom 3 in the national division.

It would make things a lot more interesting in Scotland. Rangers and Celtic might not want to miss out on all the old firm games. But a competition could be devised where the top 5 play each other for a super trophy.
And the other 11 clubs could play in the Scottish Challenge cup.

An Anglo Scottish cup would also be a great idea!Angelic


buncranaboy
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Jul 14, 2008, 11:04 PM

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Post #83 of 89 (3167 views)
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Re: [rdp] Replacing Gretna? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately


In Reply To
An Anglo Scottish cup would also be a great idea!Angelic



Yep. I can see Bolton vs Motherwell packing them in.


prorege
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Jul 15, 2008, 7:26 AM

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Post #84 of 89 (3128 views)
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Re: [buncranaboy] Replacing Gretna? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

The old Texaco and Anglo-Scottish Cups were always of more interest to Scottish fans than to those in England.

Looking back at some of the games I went to shows how the tournament declined:

70/1 Dunfermline v Tottenham, Hearts v Wolves
80/1 Airdrie v Bury, Rangers v Chesterfield.

In between times, in 76/7, Newcastle were thrown out of the competition for fielding a reserve / youth team in a match at Ayr United.

By the finish of it the organisers struggled to get English teams to take part at all. Scottish teams were falling over each other to lose in the pre-season Qualifying Stages to avoid having to play in the Anglo-Scottish part. With no sponsor, poor crowds and virtually no media attention, it was a money-loser for all concerned. The Scottish League had to threaten clubs with hefty fines to get them to take part at all.


Richard Rundle
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Jul 15, 2008, 8:32 AM

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Post #85 of 89 (3120 views)
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Re: [buncranaboy] Replacing Gretna? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately


In Reply To

In Reply To
An Anglo Scottish cup would also be a great idea!Angelic



Yep. I can see Bolton vs Motherwell packing them in.


Bolton Wanderers don't even take the UEFA Cup seriously. What chance would a competition like this have?

--
Richard


KnowYourMarket
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Jul 15, 2008, 8:37 AM

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Post #86 of 89 (3118 views)
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Re: [Richard Rundle] Replacing Gretna? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Buncranaboy's point exactly. Which is a great shame as clubs these days seem obsessed with being mediocre. Reading found out the hard way last season by only taking the top division seriously and look where that got them!

In an ideal world it would be nice to see a British Cup, but it ain't gonna happen....



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acmold
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Jul 15, 2008, 9:09 AM

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Post #87 of 89 (3110 views)
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Re: [modelhobbies] Replacing Gretna? [In reply to] Can't Post or


In Reply To
Buncranaboy's point exactly. Which is a great shame as clubs these days seem obsessed with being mediocre. Reading found out the hard way last season by only taking the top division seriously and look where that got them!

In an ideal world it would be nice to see a British Cup, but it ain't gonna happen....



A British Cup would sadly end up being the top four clubs in Wales play semi-finals then a final, the winners go forward to met the winners of the North Ireland section (semi's then final), the winner of that game would then play the 4th placed team in Scotland for a place in the competition. If all the Premiership teams deemed to enter the competition proper there would be 20 Premiership teams (or their Reserves / Youth teams) and the top four from Scotland. The competition would be live on Setanta or UK Bronze, the semi's and final would be held over to the following season because most clubs could not be bothered to play the games. All clubs would charge full admission prices.


reg dunn
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Jul 15, 2008, 11:12 AM

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Post #88 of 89 (3091 views)
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Re: [rdp] Replacing Gretna? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

I agree except I think 2 national divisions not 3. Which clubs would you have in the third national tier? Not many with gates of more than a few hundred.


buncranaboy
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Jul 15, 2008, 1:11 PM

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Post #89 of 89 (3070 views)
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Re: [acmold] Replacing Gretna? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately


In Reply To

In Reply To
Buncranaboy's point exactly. Which is a great shame as clubs these days seem obsessed with being mediocre. Reading found out the hard way last season by only taking the top division seriously and look where that got them!

In an ideal world it would be nice to see a British Cup, but it ain't gonna happen....



A British Cup would sadly end up being the top four clubs in Wales play semi-finals then a final, the winners go forward to met the winners of the North Ireland section (semi's then final), the winner of that game would then play the 4th placed team in Scotland for a place in the competition. If all the Premiership teams deemed to enter the competition proper there would be 20 Premiership teams (or their Reserves / Youth teams) and the top four from Scotland. The competition would be live on Setanta or UK Bronze, the semi's and final would be held over to the following season because most clubs could not be bothered to play the games. All clubs would charge full admission prices.


but do you think they would they all do proper programmes 'cos that would make everything okay Crazy

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