Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Stick In The Mud

Was this the moment a rather unfortunate Gary Hooper became a convert for summer football?

Amusing as it is to see a professional football fall over his own feet, there must be sympathy for all the players being asked to perform on pitches in the state Tannadice was in on Sunday.

Not criticising Dundee United, lots of pitches are in a terrible state and the weather has been following an unsettling pattern of crap through shocking to bloody awful. United actually did well to get the game played on a pitch that, but for certain areas, could probably have been even worse.

And it was commendable the way both teams managed to put on a very watchable game of football.

Slight concerns about something in the BBC match report though:

Both managers had expressed their surprise that the game was given the go-ahead after three pitch inspections, with United's Peter Houston suggesting that pressure had been put on referee Mike Tumilty because of the SPL's fixture backlog.

Talk of summer football might remain slightly facetious. And the weather has been slightly freakish.

But the quality of the football will not improve if we're having to force games through because we're worried about the number of games we need to cram in.

A winter break doesn't solve that problem. Maybe an earlier start to the season with a couple of two week breaks scheduled for the spring, expressly reserved to clear any outstanding backlog, would be a better option.

It's not easy to find a workable solution. But it would be nice if the SPL's Brains Trust could come up with something.

Amusing as it can be, we don't actually pay our money to see a player of Hooper's ability fall flat on his face.

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  1. Is the fixture backlog and the winter break not also an argument for fewer teams? I wish the SPL would consider reducing the number of ... oh.

  2. For me the solution is to increase the number of sides in the league - something I've written about before: http://spl.footballblog.co.uk/supporters-oppose-10team-spl.html - and get rid of the league cup. This would allow for a winter break and allow the teams in European competitions more breathing space. The tournament has no European place at the end of it so I can't see any reason for keeping it.