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Scottish Football - A Lesson For Us?

Previously a two horse race (only Celtic and Rangers have won the top flight in the last 30 years), now Celtic have gone on a domestic run of 62 unbeaten games and are, effectively, unbeatable in the SP. And yet Celtic's exit, yet again in the earliest of stages, from the Champions League last night rather sums up the plight of Scottish football with the total lack of competitiveness means that they struggle on the international stage too.

I cannot think of a single current Scottish footballer anywhere near good enough to play for a decent European side. For us old enough to remember the likes of Law, Mackay, Dalglish, Souness, Hansen, Jimmy Johnstone, Baxter, Cooper, Gemmill, McNeil, Jordan, McAllister, Andy Gray, Eddie Gray, Sharp, Lorimer, John Collins, Bobby Collins, Bremner, Macari, John Robertson, Gilzean etc etc it is difficult to comprehend quite how backward they've gone.

So what's gone wrong? But, more to the point, do we really care! Except, of course, that the "success" of English teams is based on an underpin of foreign players resulting from the influx of Sky money. So will we go the same way, because it's all very well producing U17 and U20 World Cup Winners, but will those boys be allowed to flourish or consigned to teams in the lower reaches of English football? And what happens if the TV money runs out?

Comments

  • I could write an essay on what's wrong with Scottish football but I don't think anyone cares!

    Scotland were the runners up and hosts of the under 16s world cup in 1989. A few years after Sournes and Murray started a revolution at Ranger's (it wasn't a 2 horse race then either) and eventually the we will spend £10 for every £5 they spend remark and lots of average players at all of the SPL clubs coinciding with the national team failing to qualify for any tournaments.

    I was at Murrayfield on Saturday, the standard of the SPL is a fraction of what it was in the 90s. Was similar to watching a league one game and it's less than 10 years since Ranger's made the UEFA cup final.
  • It’s not about money, it’s all about competition. Scottish football is the proverbial land of the blind and Celtic is the one-eyed man. King in his own country but up against two-eyed men when they play teams from elsewhere. The big shame is that small countries like Iceland can produce world class footballers and Scotland can’t. It can produce Olympic gold meallists in a range of sports so the winning talent is there but tellingly they are competing as part of a UK team and the competition levels are set much higher.
  • Scottish football.........what’s the point?
  • edited November 1

    I could write an essay on what's wrong with Scottish football but I don't think anyone cares!

    Scotland were the runners up and hosts of the under 16s world cup in 1989. A few years after Sournes and Murray started a revolution at Ranger's (it wasn't a 2 horse race then either) and eventually the we will spend £10 for every £5 they spend remark and lots of average players at all of the SPL clubs coinciding with the national team failing to qualify for any tournaments.

    I was at Murrayfield on Saturday, the standard of the SPL is a fraction of what it was in the 90s. Was similar to watching a league one game and it's less than 10 years since Ranger's made the UEFA cup final.

    Or you could sum it up the two words - Scottish Players
  • Grassroots is the issue. Suitable playing areas are not being maintained and the health of Scotland's young people ranks amongst the worst in Europe. The same issue has been seen in rugby, with that having that even bigger issue of having a somewhat elitist stigma that nationalists dislike (rugby is seen as a posho unionist Tory sport, the preserve of private schools).
  • Celtic fans still want to join the prem as well serioisly think they would struggle against majority of prem teams(excluding The Stripey Nigels)
  • Celtic fans still want to join the prem as well serioisly think they would struggle against majority of prem teams(excluding The Stripey Nigels)

    But it wouldn't be their current team that was competing though, would it?
  • If you factor in the globalisation that has opened up markets that were never there before it is no surprise that, with so many footballers from Africa, South America and far flung reaches of Europe, there are less Scottish players playing at the top clubs in Europe.

    The same is true of English players.

    Scottish football has always favored the 'Big Two' but with the TV money, and the 'unfair' distribution of it, there is a small group of super clubs in every division and the gap between them and 'the rest' is bigger than it ever was and is growing. What Clough did at Derby and Forest can never be repeated. I know people will point to Leicester but they didn't break into the top group, they just won it in a year when everything seemed to fall for them. The fact that they were in a relegation battle the season before and after just confirms that they were a one off and they are just as likely to win it again as any of the other also-rans - i.e. thousands to one against.

    The fact that Celtic can never, realistically, expect to be successful in Europe yet will not, it seems, have any real competition in the SPL for years to come it shapes their transfer aspirations and expectations. There is no need to try to sign £60m strikers or pay them £200k a week. They might as well concentrate on just staying ahead of their Scottish rivals, rather than face a Rangers type disaster bu over spending.

    In reality, even though it becomes boring for all the rest, a league only needs two competing teams to push them both on. It's when there is only one team that the drive and ambition can be tempered, or just scaled back.

    Eventually Rangers will rise to challenge Celtic again and then it will be business as usual but we are kidding ourselves if we think that the English Premier League is any less of a closed shop than the Scottish. The English Premier League just has a bigger shop!
  • se9addick said:

    Charlton fans still want to join the prem as well serioisly think they would struggle against majority of prem teams(excluding The Stripey Nigels)

    But it wouldn't be their current team that was competing though, would it?




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