Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Split drives clubs bananas

Martin Bain of Rangers, The Scottish Football BlogIn a turn of events that would have tested even Nostradamus’ powers of prediction it seems that some of the SPL clubs are unhappy with the post split fixtures.

That’s news that sent me tumbling into a state of a shock.

Motherwell face a third trip to Celtic, St Mirren another trip to Falkirk. And spare a thought for poor old Rangers, forced to play three away games on the bounce. If only they had a 13 point lead at the top of the table to cushion the blow.

Is it me or does this not happen every year? And that’s because the split is a fudge, a mishmash, that continues to bewilder everyone who isn’t directly involved in running the SPL.

There was a suggestion when the SPL chose to implement the split that we were taking a lead, developing a new model that would soon be adopted across the world.

Strangely that’s not happened. It’s almost as if there aren’t that many leagues in the world keen to bastardise their league format to provide TV companies with four games between their two biggest sides every year.

Motherwell are planning to take this further while Rangers’ Martin Bain has said:
"There are a number of anomalies that the post-split fixtures have thrown up this season and this highlights the unsatisfactory situation that currently exists with a 12-team league and a split after 33 games, and outside influences seem to becoming major factors in determining these. I think the time has come for a more considered debate on a better structure that removes the split completely."
All these complaints would, of course, carry more weight if the club’s themselves weren’t culpable in instigating the split in the first place.

The strange thing is that this could actually prove quite an exciting split. Second, third, and fourth are up for grabs while the bottom five are separated by just eight points. Instead we’ve got another argument to distract us all. How typically Scottish.

For those of who have never loved the split there is good news. With Rangers now taking up arms against the current league set-up the SPL will, a cynic might suggest, suddenly start to reconsider their position on this issue.