SPFL turmoil is about power and control


Aberdeen’s chairman Dave Cormack reckons only an(other) independent inquiry will allow reconciliation in Scottish football, so will vote for one today.  If only.  I’m afraid the picture has moved on a mile or two from reconciliation.  Statements by SPFL Dunfermline chairman Ross McArthur and by Brechin City, on behalf of chairman Ken Ferguson (both men are SPFL board members), make it clear the schism within Scottish football runs far deeper than misunderstanding or naked opportunism.

Dunfermline’s McArthur wrote: “I have to provide this statement following the release of accusatory comments in a Club Statement made by the Chairman and CEO of Inverness.

“Since the SPFL director’s resolution was first issued, a number of clubs in the Championship would confirm it is the behaviour of Inverness that has continually been aggressive and confrontational. However, no one felt it necessary to win points in public, as robust conversations take place in the normal course of a competitive business like football.

“Turning to the “allegation” regarding the information that was conveyed by me to Inverness FC, on Friday 10th April 2020.

“It most certainly wasn’t a threat, simply a potential consequence of their action not to back the SPFL resolution currently put in front of them, in favour of a counter resolution which was being mooted at that time.”

The Daily Record chased down this “counter resolution” from Inverness chief exec Scot Gardiner, which was to null and void all four SPFL leagues, removing the possibility of Inverness being promoted through league reconstruction, reducing their SPFL financial pay-out, expose the league to compensation claims from sponsors, broadcasters and others who paid for a league that did not happen.

Why would Inverness embark on a course of action that is so clearly counter to their and the game’s best interests?

In their statement yesterday, Brechin City wrote: “in the recent dossier released in support of the EGM taking place at the SPFL tomorrow… there is an accusation which is pointed directly at our Chairman… this states, “It has also been alleged that Ken Ferguson called League 2 clubs and told them that Inverness had changed their vote to YES and, as a result, the Resolution was going to be approved and that there was no point in League 2 clubs voting NO.””

They go on to state in the most unambiguous terms: “This is categorically refuted.

“In addition to anecdotal evidence from all of the other League 2 clubs, we have in our possession verification from each club that no such call was made. Furthermore, each League 2 club is content to provide corroboration to this effect and has stressed that they are entirely relaxed (and in reality appreciative) of the integrity Ken displayed in his role as an SPFL Director in the lead up to the vote.”

At least one party is bringing the game into disrepute and it is not the man with written verification from every club in his division confirming he is telling the truth.  Today’s resolution will be rejected but the narrative will quickly move on.

Protagonists will make like as difficult as possible for Neil Doncaster, Rod McKenzie and Murdoch MacLellan and they will create havoc for the League if necessary to put their own men in the top jobs.  If you think this was all about stopping Celtic win 9-in-a-row you are wrong, it is about power and control of what happens next.

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  1. Ray Winstone's Big Disembodied Heid on

    TOSB. First time I’ve heard that about English.It would explain a lot, particularly his missionary zeal during this shameful saga.

  2. Scotsman saying those backing Sevco were 4 Prem clubs, ONE from the Chanpionship and 8 from Leagues One & Two combined. There were two abstentions.



    Now, unless Partick are counted as already relegated (which would be a strange position for the SPFL to take) then either ICT or Partick failed to back the Sevco vote. One of them may have abstained but, given all the bluster beforehand, it is astonishing that they failed to vote with the Ibrox mob.

  3. Stevie G says that if the meeting had only been 86 minutes long they would have got a result…

  4. The Huns are on the ropes…again…this is NOW the time to move in and finish them off forever….Hopefully the SPFL/SFA CAN hammer them with a heavy fine at least.



    Ive little time for Doncaster and any of his cronies…but he MUST be raging with the Huns after he aided and abetted in helping them in every way back in 2012…and this is the “Thanks” he gets ?



  5. CELTIC Football Club welcomes the decisive vote by SPFL clubs to reject a lawyer-led inquiry into the processes relating to the resolution approved last month with support from the vast majority of clubs.



    We are satisfied that there is no evidence of any wrongdoing by the board or executive and do not consider that such an inquiry is necessary.



    We now appeal to all clubs to look to the future in the knowledge that the threats which exist to the fabric of Scottish football are grave and unprecedented. All of our energies should be applied to planning for the return of the game in season 2020-21 and to the financial survival of all our clubs.



    This current crisis is the fault of no individual or organisation and it would be irrational to suggest otherwise. It is the duty of everyone committed to the future of our game to make the best of this awful situation, and not the worst.



    We greatly regret the denigration of named individuals who have, on every occasion, acted upon decisions which were made by the board of the SPFL, representing all 42 clubs. The board and executive of the SPFL have operated under circumstances of unique difficulty in dealing with challenges of an unprecedented nature.



    Although Celtic are not directly involved in issues of promotion and relegation, we have great sympathy for clubs which will end up in a lower division. While we have been supportive of temporary reconstruction, Celtic also understands the position of clubs who do not support league reconstruction at this time.



    We recognise the hugely damaging effects that measures to counter the pandemic are inflicting on football clubs of all sizes across Scotland, Europe and beyond. It is the duty of everyone with the interests of football at heart to work for the greater good of securing the future of our sport.



    In that spirit, Celtic will play our part in ensuring the earliest possible safe return to something approaching normality. Our highest priority is the safety of our players and supporters and we are acutely aware that Scottish football’s current difficulties represent only a tiny part of the challenges faced by society as a whole.

  6. Interesting the Celtic statement specifically says season 20/21 and omits any thereby infers there is any lingering hopes of this season resuming.




  7. Rock Tree Bhoy on

    !!BADA BING!! on 12TH MAY 2020 3:59 PM



    RTB- No mention of resuming this season in our statement.






    Did notice that, all about preparing for next season, which leads you to think the decision re this season has been made and its just a question of issuing the formal announcement

  8. With possible confusion on how Partick and ICT have finally voted today…please dont tell me that the ballot Today was in any way “invalid” ?



  9. ‘All of our energies should be applied to planning for the return of the game in season 2020-21’



    No chance of re-starting of this season then

  10. !!Bada Bing!! on

    The huns allegations need to be acted on now,can’t let them off with that.

  11. !!BADA BING!! on 12TH MAY 2020 4:03 PM


    D17- Partick are still an SPFL Club






    As i understand the vote was based on league positions at close of play. Of 10 clubs in championship either Partick or Inverness supported the SPFL. It’s bizarre.

  12. Pedro throwing his weight behind Doncaster with a big vote of confidence. Our PR is on point as it has been for some months.



    Hollicom CSC

  13. TIMALOY29 on 12TH MAY 2020 3:51 PM


    ROCK TREE BHOY on 12TH MAY 2020 2:58 PM




    Neil Doncaster has already said in so may words if sevco pay for the inquiry it certainly would not be deemed to be ‘independent’, therefore it would be null and void.








    I would agree with Doncaster.




    But, Livingston & Aberdeen might not see it that way. They may see an independent investigation as a chance to get past all of this.




    My brother-in-law said exactly the same thing to me 10 minutes ago.

  14. weebobbycollins on

    I suppose another tree will be chopped down for further statements from the govan iguana…

  15. Will the Hun go away? Or will they be the cuckoo in the nest?


    Probably the latter because we do know they are all cuckoo.

  16. IF the Huns, Aberdeen etc STILL wanted a so called Independent Investigation after Todays ballot…..surely The SPFL could DECLINE to take part and/or co operate with any so called investigation, with the Vote Today being a clear Representation of all Clubs ?





    It surely must have been ICT who failed to back the resolution. I checked both clubs websites and Partick made a cast iron guarantee to vote for an investigation. ICT restricted themselves to disputing that they had made threats .




    They have obviously abstained. I wonder if they have received flak from their fans enquiring what their CEO was up to. They have covered themselves by denying that they pushed for null a& void but have refrained from voting for Sevco in an attempt to extract themselves from the quagmire.

  18. i hope they challenge this outcome in the court. they will lose. maybe it will motivate our board to challenge their cheating years in the court.


    i await the announcement of twenty in a row.


    we have won every league title since 2000/01.


    martin won 5 in a row.


    gordon won 4 in a row.


    neil won 5 in a row. 1 shared with tony.


    ronnie won 2 in a row.


    brendan won 2 and a half.


    neil has won 1 and a half.


    neil lennon has won 5 titles on his own as celtic manager and has shared 2 titles, 1 with tony mowbray and 1with brendan rodgers.


    well done neil.

  19. Sevco The Rangers* EGM vote today didn’t get Close, Brothers





    tIck tock

  20. Big Jimmy,


    Having had a quick look on their sites,its fekin meltdown.Much to my great,unbridled ,joy.