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Last Updated: Monday, 18 February 2008, 17:01 GMT
Gretna players hit by pay delay
Gretna celebrate a rare win over Falkirk last month
Gretna have endured a difficult first season in the SPL
Gretna have assured the Scottish Premier League that they are working hard to resolve the non-payment of wages to staff, including players.

Club owner Brooks Mileson is seriously ill in a Newcastle hospital and he has been responsible for the payroll.

Gretna officials, including Mileson's son Craig and chief executive Graeme Muir, have been holding meetings to address the issue.

The players' union (PFA Scotland) is monitoring the situation.

Gretna's resources have been stretched this season as they have been paying for a groundshare with Motherwell at Fir Park.

During his five years in charge, Mileson, 60, has bankrolled Gretna as they have risen rapidly through the Scottish leagues to the top flight.

He underwent two stomach operations in 2006 and has also had to live with the debilitating illness ME.

The Black & Whites' Raydale Park does not meet SPL standards and the club chose to share Fir Park rather than rebuild.

With Gretna only boasting a population of around 3,000 and fans facing a long round-trip to Lanarkshire, crowds have been poor.

A mere 342 turned up for the CIS Insurance Cup tie with Cowdenbeath, while 1092 made the trip to see Inverness visit on league duty in October.

MY SPORT: DEBATE

Gretna, who lie nine points adrift at the foot of the SPL, aim to build a new eco-stadium near the town.

However, the plans are dependent on government backing and work is yet to start.

In January, Gretna lightened their wage bill by selling striker Colin McMenamin to Dundee and defender Danny Grainger to Dundee United.

The club also chose to release Martin Canning, James Grady, Tony Caig, Ryan McGuffie, David Graham, Allan Jenkins, David Cowan, Niall Henderson and Colin Scott.

Fraser McLaren, Erik Paartalu and David Bingham were sent out on loan, while a host of youngsters were brought in on temporary deals from English clubs.

SEE ALSO
Gretna owner Mileson in hospital
12 Feb 08 |  South of Scotland
Gretna face eco-stadium dilemma
19 Nov 07 |  Gretna


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