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Burnie_man

Highland Pyramid

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27 minutes ago, LongTimeLurker said:

A lot of people in EoS circles are keen on the Club 42 boundary because they didn't like travelling to Tayside in an east region context, but the HL, NCL and north region don't appear to have received the memo that they are supposed to be aligning themselves with it. That's probably because neither the SFA or SPFL have appeared to actually want things to be organised that way either in recent times.

Do you think the NCL and HL should put a pause on trying to get a working pyramid going until Tayside's boundary issues are resolved to everyone's satisfaction?

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6 minutes ago, welshbairn said:

Do you think the NCL and HL should put a pause on trying to get a working pyramid going until Tayside's boundary issues are resolved to everyone's satisfaction?

Bit like asking should the EoS & SoS sit outside the pyramid until everyone else got on board.

This has been a couple of years in the making since the NCL AGM in 2018. They're obviously happy with whatever arrangement they've come up with.

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16 minutes ago, welshbairn said:

Do you think the NCL and HL should put a pause on trying to get a working pyramid going until Tayside's boundary issues are resolved to everyone's satisfaction?

No, they should do their best to look after numero uno because everybody else has been in all of this. 

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I like to speculate on what might/might not happen in the foreseeable future so, at present, I am thinking along the lines of what happens if the NCL becomes a Tier 5 league ahead of any such movement from the North and/or Tayside (East Region) Juniors.

Will it spur ambition and investment in the NCL area amongst clubs which are currently outside the NCL or even don't currently exist at adult level? I say this as all clubs in the area would then know that the door is open and that it will stay open, so ambition and long term investment might become less unviable than it has been to date. Note to Inverness City Council to get off its' rear end and do more to encourage and to support local football.

If the NCL becomes Tier 5 with effect from 2020/21 or 2021/22 will that cause current Juniors in the North/Tayside to get restless? Maybe just as has been seen in the East and West?

Banks O' Dee (already licenced) and Dyce will be in the Aberdeenshire FA next season and have, or are close to having, the necessary facilities to go senior. Aberdeen University may see some benefits to being a senior club too - even if stopping short of a club licence? If these three went it could create a ripple effect with enough clubs also going to set off the rest??

If the door is opened, creating opportunity, then clubs  will consider taking it as they will have reason to believe that this is for keeps i.e. worthwhile to, at least, consider what's involved to step up to senior status - and they won't need floodlights just to do that as becoming licenced is another level of investment altogether. It has happened in the East and West and may be starting in the NCL area (Loch Ness, Scourie).

If the North Juniors stick with the JFA will the more westerly clubs consider that there could be some merits in switching to the NCL and becoming senior clubs with the chance, if desired, to take the licencing route in future, joining Under 20's Development league football, etc. (Is there any merit?)

In the Tayside (East Region) there's scarcely any movement into this set-up from the Amateur ranks. When was the last time an amateur side moved into the Juniors here? Will there come a time when e.g. Scone Thistle might get cold feet and switch to the EoS? It's said that they're more Dundee oriented but if players decide to switch to nearby EoS clubs this could create a pressure which may be difficult to with-stand.

The current leading East/Tayside clubs include most which could cope with a joint top division shared with the best of the North Juniors. Travel to Aberdeenshire isn't really a major issue these days for the strongest clubs. Would it be practical to create a North-East Senior League with only the top division covering the whole of the present North and East/Tayside Juniors areas i.e. the lower clubs playing in the same geographical areas as at present. Pushing up the best Tayside clubs could make it easier for current amateurs to plan for and to make the step up?

 

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17 hours ago, LongTimeLurker said:

There is nothing fictional about the east region's Tayside league. If the SJFA's north region is already involved in the discussions with the NCL and the HL, there is no obvious reason why the other SJFA region with a division full of clubs north of the Club 42 boundary (plus Tayport) wouldn't be involved as well beyond there being zero interest amongst any of the parties involved in having Tayside teams on board in that context

The East Region league has split in 2, but the East Region as an organisation is still one, there is no "Tayside region" even though in practise there is a Tayside league. So there is no organisation to invite to formal talks.

I know for a fact that Tayside club officials talk to NRJFA & HL officials on an informal basis. Wether and how much they discuss the pyramid & potential Tayside access is not something I know, but I know they at least talk to each other on an informal basis. It's also worth mentioning that the boundary issue isn't over yet. The SPFL & HL agree on it moving, they are apparently not happy with the LL's attitude on this as they are the ones blocking this. But they are still trying to get it sorted. A lot will probably depend on whether or not Brechin find themselves in trouble again next season.

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The first part makes no sense. The SJFA could represent the Tayside clubs in the same way it did in the LL PWG meetings. Tom Johnston's posture was that all of the east region and all of the now departed west region should be LL feeders, so the north region was able to fly solo where the HL is concerned on pyramid matters. Senior SFA officeholders were happy to go along with that arrangement and tried to make it happen but could not overcome the obstacle of the EoS having a veto over changes to the LL playoff.

The second part is on the money. The SPFL and HL want the Club 42 boundary shifted or eliminated from the rules and the only impediment to that happening is the LL. The HL is only negotiating to take on tier 6 feeders in the parts of the country it views as its traditional catchment and does not want Tayside.

The EoS accepted Luncarty and is taking the posture that any club from north of the line can apply subject to membership approval. That is useful for them as a way of eliminating any possible rationale for a role for the east region. That's the obvious way in for any Tayside club that wants to be part of the pyramid because the Midland League concept is unlikely to be accepted at tier 6 by either the HL or LL 

Edited by LongTimeLurker

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I will say this once again......speaking to official's from Whitburn juniors,Bathgate Thistle and Harthill Royal that I either work with or know they are adamant they want no part in regularly travelling to Tayside.

Speaking to a guy on the Harthill committee yesterday,hes even moaning about travelling to Eyemouth and Coldstream,if Harthill join the EoS !!!

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With the possible exception of Banks o' Dee and (a revitalised) Sunnybank, I doubt very much if there are any North juniors contemplating going senior. There are a host of juniors in/round Aberdeen and most of the remainder are in towns that already have a senior team, be it in the SPFL or the HL. Burghead Thistle spring to mind as being one of the few without a senior team on their doorstep, but there are a couple not far away. Also Banchory St Ternan. Spey Valley United are practically in Grantown.

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12 minutes ago, Whitburn Vale said:

I will say this once again......speaking to official's from Whitburn juniors,Bathgate Thistle and Harthill Royal that I either work with or know they are adamant they want no part in regularly travelling to Tayside.

Speaking to a guy on the Harthill committee yesterday,hes even moaning about travelling to Eyemouth and Coldstream,if Harthill join the EoS !!!

The only way in for Whitburn and co will be the EoS. Once Livingston United go the West Lothian league setup is probably about two more defections and/or abeyances away from completely unravelling. The Tayside angle probably isn't in any way pivotal to what will happen in other words.

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3 minutes ago, Jacksgranda said:

With the possible exception of Banks o' Dee and (a revitalised) Sunnybank, I doubt very much if there are any North juniors contemplating going senior. There are a host of juniors in/round Aberdeen and most of the remainder are in towns that already have a senior team, be it in the SPFL or the HL. Burghead Thistle spring to mind as being one of the few without a senior team on their doorstep, but there are a couple not far away. Also Banchory St Ternan. Spey Valley United are practically in Grantown.

My understanding is that the reason they might sign up is mainly to get rid of Banks o' Dee and stop them from hogging all the silverware due to the cash injection they get from full SFA membership as they would be forced to accept promotion to keep their licence if they won the north superleague. At that point if nobody else gets licensed nothing much changes.

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6 minutes ago, LongTimeLurker said:

 

The only way in for Whitburn and co will be the EoS. Once Livingston United go the West Lothian league setup is probably about two more defections and/or abeyances away from completely unravelling. The Tayside angle probably isn't in any way pivotal to what will happen in other words.

It is pivotal as the West Lothian teams want nowt to do with Tayside teams in the EoS when they eventually join !!

That's why the ERJFA is set up the way it is now because the West Lothian teams wanted nothing to do with travelling to Dundee and Angus regularly.

Edited by Whitburn Vale

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Just now, Whitburn Vale said:

It is pivotal as they want nowt to do with Tayside teams in the EoS when they eventually join !!

That's why the ERJFA is set up the way it is now because the West Lothian teams wanted nothing to do with travelling to Dundee and Angus regularly.

They still have to go to Tayside for east region level cup games. They are unlikely to ever wind up in a Tayside heavy division in an EoS context unlike what happened two seasons ago with the east superleague.  The fears are overblown.

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20 minutes ago, LongTimeLurker said:

My understanding is that the reason they might sign up is mainly to get rid of Banks o' Dee and stop them from hogging all the silverware due to the cash injection they get from full SFA membership as they would be forced to accept promotion to keep their licence if they won the north superleague. At that point if nobody else gets licensed nothing much changes.

Aye, that might be, after BoD go up I doubt very much if anyone else will want to. Or be able too, either.

Edited by Jacksgranda
sllepnig

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6 minutes ago, LongTimeLurker said:

They still have to go to Tayside for east region level cup games. They are unlikely to ever wind up in a Tayside heavy division in an EoS context unlike what happened two seasons ago with the east superleague.  The fears are overblown.

That's why I used the word "regularly".....

Well aware they have to travel on ERJFA cup business but after speaking to the Harthill committee man yesterday he made it clear to me that "travelling" is their no.1 issue with joining the EOS.

So if Eyemouth is a problem right now to him,then Angus certainly would be....

How anyone can back Angus sides in particular playing in the LL area is beyond me and I'm not the only one on here that thinks that way !!

I travel regularly to HL games sometimes as a neutral and sometimes to see Deveronvale,Angus to many people down here is undoubtedly in the north.

What Brechin did in trying to coerce the SPFL into barring LL sides from the Challenge cup and League cup just to try and force the LL's hands into shifting the boundary north to the Angus/Aberdeenshire border was a disgrace and should never be forgotten......

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1 hour ago, Whitburn Vale said:

...What Brechin did in trying to coerce the SPFL into barring LL sides from the Challenge cup and League cup just to try and force the LL's hands into shifting the boundary north to the Angus/Aberdeenshire border was a disgrace and should never be forgotten...

Maybe I'm too cynical, but what the LL will probably do is try to link the rule change to some concession from the SPFL that favours them. Automatic relegation where Club 42 is concerned might be a bridge too far but well worth taking a swing at to see what the counter offer would be. I suspect the SPFL's first response on hearing that was the threats you describe rather than further negotiation. Time will tell on how it all unfolds but Tayside going into the LL catchment still looks like the probable outcome.

No point getting het up over this stuff. The cooler head that thinks strategically a few steps ahead usually wins in these types of negotiations. The former EoS premier clubs that were in at the foundation of the LL and most of the larger ex-junior present day EoS premier clubs will probably be the losers long term at this point in terms of status in another decade or so once the LL becomes west dominated. They really should have thought more carefully about the longer term implications of Option Z when it was on the table rather than going all cherry menthol about Tom Johnston and a parallel east feeder.

Edited by LongTimeLurker

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3 hours ago, Jacksgranda said:

Aye, that might be, after BoD go up I doubt very much if anyone else will want to. Or be able too, either.

Dyce seemingly found the resources from out of thin air to get floodlights. Seemingly just to be able to join the Aberdeenshire FA. Aberdeen University have talked about regaining SFA membership over the years. Montrose Roselea have said their might be interest in getting a SFA licence but weren't thinking about the Highland League.

None of them have exactly been North Super League title contenders, but they and others will probably look into licencing. With a promotion structure tied in place eventually another licenced title contender would stumble into the Highland League.

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10 hours ago, LongTimeLurker said:

They are unlikely to ever wind up in a Tayside heavy division in an EoS context unlike what happened two seasons ago with the east superleague.  The fears are overblown.


Oh no, they really believe they’ll be away to Coldstream “every 2 weeks” :blink: 

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9 hours ago, LongTimeLurker said:

Maybe I'm too cynical, but what the LL will probably do is try to link the rule change to some concession from the SPFL that favours them. Automatic relegation where Club 42 is concerned might be a bridge too far but well worth taking a swing at to see what the counter offer would be. I suspect the SPFL's first response on hearing that was the threats you describe rather than further negotiation. Time will tell on how it all unfolds but Tayside going into the LL catchment still looks like the probable outcome.

No point getting het up over this stuff. The cooler head that thinks strategically a few steps ahead usually wins in these types of negotiations. The former EoS premier clubs that were in at the foundation of the LL and most of the larger ex-junior present day EoS premier clubs will probably be the losers long term at this point in terms of status in another decade or so once the LL becomes west dominated. They really should have thought more carefully about the longer term implications of Option Z when it was on the table rather than going all cherry menthol about Tom Johnston and a parallel east feeder.

Option Z was never on the table.

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No idea how you can reach that conclusion when the various parties in the PWG meetings were given a set of options to discuss that included Option Z. The postures adopted by both the SJFA and LL/EoS blocked anything other than the emergence of the WoS from being a viable pathway for pyramid entry by clubs from the west. Under those circumstances setting up the WoS and allowing ongoing SJFA membership was the sensible course of action, because there was no other way to first break the logjam and then manage to keep all the west clubs in the same structure.

In the short term the emergence of the WoS as a tier 6 LL feeder was definitely a decisive victory for the LL/EoS over the SJFA in blazer politics terms. Longer term, however, the east is almost certainly going to wind up as the most under-represented part of the country at tier 5 because of the structure that is now in place. The HL can probably be viewed as the main long term winners, especially if they now get to effectively jettison Tayside in de facto terms by only agreeing to negotiate with the north region and NCL as tier 6 feeders.

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7 minutes ago, LongTimeLurker said:

No idea how you can reach that conclusion when the various parties in the PWG meetings were given a set of options to discuss that included Option Z. The postures adopted by both the SJFA and LL/EoS blocked anything other than the emergence of the WoS from being a viable pathway for pyramid entry by clubs from the west. Under those circumstances setting up the WoS and allowing ongoing SJFA membership was the sensible course of action, because there was no other way to first break the logjam and then manage to keep all the west clubs in the same structure.

The home work assignment for all the leagues was to discuss and get feedback on 4 ideas that hadn't been fleshed out to any real degree. One idea that had already been rejected by the LL and EoSFL by membership votes. They were also to canvas for any other suggestions and thoughts on the HL/LL boundary.

The 3 way split as a concept had about as much legitimacy behind it as the likes of 12-12-12-12 and 14-14-16. They were ideas spitballed to get through change without any depth or consensus behind them. Which is why following during the following PWG meeting the whole thing was disbanded.

7 minutes ago, LongTimeLurker said:

n the short term the emergence of the WoS as a tier 6 LL feeder was definitely a decisive victory for the LL/EoS over the SJFA in blazer politics terms. Longer term, however, the east is almost certainly going to wind up as the most under-represented part of the country at tier 5 because of the structure that is now in place.

Simple couple of question for everyone that pulls out this line of thinking:

Is the best team in the East worse than the 9th best team in the West? Is the 2nd best team in the East worse than the 10th best in the West? And so on...

Keep in mind it was the East Superleague teams that were happy with signing up for the Lowland Superleague idea, so clearly they're happy with their chances.

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