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Jack Ross Talks To Bbc Sport Online

By Cameron Macdonald
Tue, 2nd Jul 2002 12:00am

Jack Ross spoke to BBC Sport Online about the recents events at Airdrie and Clydebank. Read here what he feels will be the implications for the game in Scotland. Our thanks to BBC Sport for allowing us to use the article...

"Every positive action has an equal and negative reaction?

Optimists would disagree, pessimists would not and yet in football terms, Scottish fans have simultaneously witnessed the culmination of the greatest tournament our sport offers, whilst simultaneously two domestic clubs have reached the end of their existence.

While it may be argued that Airdrie only had a near-death experience before being resurrected, the history books will show that 2002 was the year that proved fatal for the original Airdrieonians FC and Clydebank FC.

I must confess that as a player I have often dreamed of World Cup participation and yet never imagined I would be part of a professional game that lost two proud clubs.

Furthermore as I have often emphasised, players are fans and therefore saddened to see the demise of clubs, and the deprivation of a local club for many football lovers.

My ultimate hope is that these recent events will mean that clubs take steps to ensure there is no repeat, and awaken to realise the need to manage their clubs properly and efficiently.

Many will say that this is already happening as record numbers of players are released, meaning wage bills will be significantly lower than in recent times.

I recognise this as a start, but further advances have to be made in terms of how we promote the game and encourage fans, thus maximising revenues and potential - something not done at many clubs.

I would like to stress I do not foresee a major domino effect emanating from the plight of Airdrie and Clydebank.

It may be that one or two other clubs fold and that restructuring of our league set-up takes place in order to safeguard the long term future of our game.

However this will only happen if a positive and sensible approach is applied to Scottish league football.

2006 should therefore witness Scotland winning the World Cup and having a strong, thriving domestic league.

I am an optimist, by the way."