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Last Updated: Monday, 5 March 2007, 14:18 GMT
Chick Young's view
Chick Young
By Chick Young
BBC Scotland football correspondent

The Scottish Football League's report card doesn't make very good reading.

You wouldn't want to be showing that to your dad.

Badly run, lost in a bygone age, over-staffed and under-performing.

Steven Fletcher
Hibs play Kilmarnock in the CIS Cup final on Sunday
The study of the administration by an independent group, accountancy firm PKF, doesn't even give the SFL an E for effort, or for that matter a wee gold star for attendance.

You don't get much for just turning up these days.

They can't attract sponsors - can't even persuade anyone to supply free ink for their quill pens.

Out of date - and there are a few out there who would like them to be out of a job.

Of course, it's not as simple as that.

The Scottish Premier League hijacked the game more than a decade back, pillaging the richest clubs for its own clique and leaving the riff-raff behind.

The game was split and suddenly there was the big boys' playground and the poor weans left behind to organise their own wee kickabout.

And, frankly, they continue to be bullied out of existence.

For decades, football journalists complained that there were too many people administrating the sport in this country.

They were clattering out that observation on rickety old typewriters when I was knee high to a corner flag.

And quite right too.

We had a Scottish Football Association and a Scottish Football League.

Then my generation saw it all change.

Has no-one actually noticed that a national final has been scheduled for that Sunday afternoon, that Kilmarnock and Hibs are entitled to their day in the sun without the Old Firm raining on their parade?
No longer did we have two bodies.

Oh no - let's make that three.

Ladies and gentlemen, may we introduce the SPL.

And pray tell me what that revloution has done for the game?

Squad numbers, electronic substitute boards and fourth officials.

The rich have gotten richer and nobody gives a burst ball about the game's grassroots.

Of course, the SFL is toiling to attract a sponsor.

How else would it be when the SPL just tramples all over them?

Whose brilliant idea was it to allow the Falkirk v Celtic game to be switched to Sunday 18 March?

If the champions elect beat Rangers on Sunday then this will be the very day they will win the title.

Of course Setanta wants the moment to show the glory.

And no-one in the SPL has the muscle to tell them where to stick their scheduling.

Has no-one actually noticed that a national final has been scheduled for that Sunday afternoon, that Kilmarnock and Hibs are entitled to their day in the sun without the Old Firm raining on their parade?

Have your views on Chick Young's column this week on My Sport.

How on earth are sponsors expected to plough their millions into our game when CIS will be elbowed off the back pages by the demand to see Celtic fly another flag.

It's all wrong. It really is.

And, if you look at it from the other direrction, are Celtic not entitled to wallow in the glory of a championship won before Easter without sharing headlines with another domestic trophy won on the same spring afternoon?

We live in a blame culture in this country with, of course, the finger pointing pre-empted with the mandatory "it wisnae me".

But somebody has wrecked the Sabbath by playing these two fixtures on the same day.

And, given that the SFL had this final penned in months ago, I think it is entitled to plead its innocence.

I just thought I would let you know that, as they circle the wagons in the league offices, there are others out there who need to take a wee look at themselves.

SEE ALSO
Scottish League is 'out of date'
05 Mar 07 |  Scottish League
St Johnstone 1-3 Hibernian
31 Jan 07 |  Scottish Cups


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