So how about this scenario, Celtic Youths are trailing in their league with 10 games to go when they register three new players, but someone’s ‘at it’. The players are all over-age but the date of birth on their registration forms have been incorrectly completed, so the players are registered and become eligible to play the remaining games. Celtic Youths win their remaining games and win the league.
At the end of the season the deception is uncovered. The people responsible for filling the forms out incorrectly are criticised but one is president of the Scottish Football Association, who give evidence to an inquiry that as the Association registered the players, the results must stand.
Time to “draw a line under it” is the line from the SFA chief executive, hoping with all his might that no one mentions the Scottish Youth Cup games the players also played in, which would invoke a parallel punishment to the one recently imposed on Spartans Youths for exactly the same offence in the same competition. The chief exec also dismisses attempts to call those criticised by the inquiry to account as scapegoating.
Ridiculous? Of course, but this is what we’ve just experienced, with another club, of course.
Challenging the verdict, if possible, is a worthwhile endeavour but it will only treat one symptom of the many issues facing Scottish Premier League clubs, who could be forgiven for losing the will to compete within the rules. Fans of several SPL clubs now believe their best interests are served by playing in an environment beyond Scotland – for a whole range of reasons.
We have to work with fans of other clubs to make the case for the SPL, as a unit, to leave Scottish football (I see cross-club initiatives are already underway).
On a completely unrelated question, if you had £21m in the bank late last year, and you were burning cash at £1m per month, which year would you run out of money?
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