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19 minutes ago, Skyline Drifter said:

No offence, but you've made that up. You won't have to look far to find plenty experts in viruses predicting exactly that all summer.

That is a fair point  although there was a fair bit of confusion in the latter part  of the year on who to believe. The government were giving mixed messages , some of the government scientists were being sidelined and in general the public were becoming more complacent because of this.  I obviously worded that sentence wrongly but the public perception didn't appear to be one of facing another nationwide lockdown. 

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2 minutes ago, theoriginalhedge said:

the government scientists were being sidelined

Johnson has dithered  and dithered, always responding too late to the scientific advice.  

Edited by EdinburghBlue

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16 minutes ago, theoriginalhedge said:

That is a fair point  although there was a fair bit of confusion in the latter part  of the year on who to believe. The government were giving mixed messages , some of the government scientists were being sidelined and in general the public were becoming more complacent because of this.  I obviously worded that sentence wrongly but the public perception didn't appear to be one of facing another nationwide lockdown. 

 

13 minutes ago, EdinburghBlue said:

Johnson has dithered  and dithered, always responding too late to the scientific advice.  

Possibly, but that's not directly relevant. We're not discussing the Govt's response to anything here. We're discussing the appropriateness of the decision of clubs below the Premiership to come back in October and the knowledge they had at the time. The SPFL made it clear at the time of decision that clubs could expect to have to play behind closed doors at least into 2021 and that doing so all season was quite possible. At the time I thought it was madness for part time clubs to choose to come back before 2021 and that mothballing the season made more financial sense though I accept the argument that the long term costs of sitting idle for a year while big teams played on live tv were difficult to judge. The one thing I accept has changed since is that at the time they made the decision furlough was set to end in October whereas it's since been made available to at least April. Those who had a lot of players under contract had to take that into account in making their decision and it's possible the knowledge of having no payroll costs would have changed their decision.

The Championship was a more difficult call to make as it covers an very large range of club size from Hearts to the two part time clubs. I thought it probably shouldn't have started but it was a tougher call. I do think a lot of club representatives made a call based on ill informed hope that things would be better before the end of 2020. I do accept that a lot of fans bought season tickets based on a hope that they'd be back in games sooner or later with not that much basis in fact. Neither is particularly the fault of the game's administrators though who were always going to do what they could to facilitate clubs playing if they wanted to.

For all the moaning of fans and some clubs about the way this was imposed on the bottom two divisions (with some justification), I wonder if there would really have been an appetite now to carry on playing in the bottom two divisions if it had gone to a vote? At a cost of circa £2.5k to £3k a week, would they want to carry on? I assume the clubs who might potentially lose out on a title or promotion might have wanted to keep going. Clearly Falkirk and Partick Thistle did to absolutely no surprise. We can probably assume that Stenhousemuir were the same though I don't think they've actually said so? I may be wrong but I suspect a majority of part time clubs would probably be in favour of a pause rather than potentially spending their entire support grant on testing.

Edited by Skyline Drifter

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18 hours ago, an86 said:

Nobody did that, though. The argument is about planning. Proceeding on a basis of emotion and hope is for the fans, it's not for people running serious operations. Every organisation should factor worst case scenarios into a risk management strategy. I would be very, very interested to see if such a strategy existed. I suspect we both know the answer to that one. 

Our most successful local ex-junior clubs, Pollok, didn't kick off this season. Horrible for everyone involved. Absolutely horrible. However, it was a decision based upon risk and not hope. There was always going to be a Pollok FC in 2021/22.

You have taken one sentence out of a reply to VT . I was replying to him.  He was definitely suggesting that. 

 

18 hours ago, an86 said:

Again, total nonsense. Queen's Park are not crossing their fingers and hoping for the best. There are serious professionals with reputations involved. They will be implementing long term strategies and analysing possible risks at every turn.

If the clubs had put procedures in place to manage the risks, we wouldn't be where we are now. Nobody knew what was going to happen. Everyone went in with their eyes closed. A leap into the unknown and an "ask questions later" attitude if it went tits up. 

What I am saying is there are no guarantees in football. Every club starts each season  hoping for success.  No one said QP hadn't put a lot of work in but even the best laid plans don't guarantee success. I Genuinely hope they do well but the full time circuit has proved  testing for many clubs. Time will tell.

Procedures were put in place though as I've pointed out.  Although actual testing isn't mandatory  , regular health checks are carried out before each game and training session .  As in normal everyday life , players will be tested if they show signs or symptoms .  If anything they were scrutinised on a much more regular basis than most of the general public.   Sorry but  everyone including the full time teams started the leagues with a leap into the unknown.  They all prepared  well but certainly didn't enter with their eyes closed . 

Obviously the juniors /ex juniors didn't feel comfortable enough to carry out the very time consuming and costly practices involved. 

 

18 hours ago, Sergeant Wilson said:

There was no, or very poor, logic applied to that decision across the board. You could go back and find plenty of negativity about that on this board across all the divisional and general forums.

 

Fans perceptions differ considerably due to personal opinion , peer pressure and the actual facts available to them .  I am no different. I am a fan with an opinion . Not saying my opinion is right but I will offer it  in the hope of sensible debate. 

 

14 hours ago, Skyline Drifter said:

 

Possibly, but that's not directly relevant. We're not discussing the Govt's response to anything here. We're discussing the appropriateness of the decision of clubs below the Premiership to come back in October and the knowledge they had at the time. The SPFL made it clear at the time of decision that clubs could expect to have to play behind closed doors at least into 2021 and that doing so all season was quite possible. At the time I thought it was madness for part time clubs to choose to come back before 2021 and that mothballing the season made more financial sense though I accept the argument that the long term costs of sitting idle for a year while big teams played on live tv were difficult to judge. The one thing I accept has changed since is that at the time they made the decision furlough was set to end in October whereas it's since been made available to at least April. Those who had a lot of players under contract had to take that into account in making their decision and it's possible the knowledge of having no payroll costs would have changed their decision.

The Championship was a more difficult call to make as it covers an very large range of club size from Hearts to the two part time clubs. I thought it probably shouldn't have started but it was a tougher call. I do think a lot of club representatives made a call based on ill informed hope that things would be better before the end of 2020. I do accept that a lot of fans bought season tickets based on a hope that they'd be back in games sooner or later with not that much basis in fact. Neither is particularly the fault of the game's administrators though who were always going to do what they could to facilitate clubs playing if they wanted to.

For all the moaning of fans and some clubs about the way this was imposed on the bottom two divisions (with some justification), I wonder if there would really have been an appetite now to carry on playing in the bottom two divisions if it had gone to a vote? At a cost of circa £2.5k to £3k a week, would they want to carry on? I assume the clubs who might potentially lose out on a title or promotion might have wanted to keep going. Clearly Falkirk and Partick Thistle did to absolutely no surprise. We can probably assume that Stenhousemuir were the same though I don't think they've actually said so? I may be wrong but I suspect a majority of part time clubs would probably be in favour of a pause rather than potentially spending their entire support grant on testing.

See above. 

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On 17/01/2021 at 00:02, an86 said:

Absolutely everything has been based around what clubs hoped would happen. The taxpayer is now coughing up £5million for leagues that are largely part-time, when the clubs knew the risks of going ahead with the season . The option to mothball was unpalatable, but it was there. 

People will criticise the Scottish Government for the league suspension, but they've stepped up to bail out clubs who started the season with their fingers crossed and their eyes closed. 

People keep saying this, but that option would likely have meant death for many clubs anyway. Clubs were told play or don't, but if you don't you'll likely lose your league spot and we can't clarify where you'll end up when you come back to the table. If a League 1 club took the decision to mothball they could potentially have found themselves in the Lowland league (or lower) when crowds were allowed back in. That's a huge drop in income, probably results in fans walking away from your club and who knows how you work back from that, not to mention having to service any running costs with absolutely no income. Or, clubs could take the chance to start the season, keep their league place, generate some match day income and hope that fans will get back in at some point. People act like clubs had a simple choice and they've made the wrong one. 

If mothball was to be considered, it needed every club to agree to it. As we saw happen though, you had some clubs trying to use it as an opportunity to gain promotion without kicking a ball (Falkirk). 

 

 

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1 hour ago, The Moonster said:

People keep saying this, but that option would likely have meant death for many clubs anyway. Clubs were told play or don't, but if you don't you'll likely lose your league spot and we can't clarify where you'll end up when you come back to the table. If a League 1 club took the decision to mothball they could potentially have found themselves in the Lowland league (or lower) when crowds were allowed back in. That's a huge drop in income, probably results in fans walking away from your club and who knows how you work back from that, not to mention having to service any running costs with absolutely no income. Or, clubs could take the chance to start the season, keep their league place, generate some match day income and hope that fans will get back in at some point. People act like clubs had a simple choice and they've made the wrong one. 

If mothball was to be considered, it needed every club to agree to it. As we saw happen though, you had some clubs trying to use it as an opportunity to gain promotion without kicking a ball (Falkirk).

This is true. The option to mothball would almost certainly have been better for lower league part time clubs but it could never have been a unilateral decision. It would have had to be unanimous or at least the majority of clubs. If the rest of your division want to play you've pretty much no option but to go along with it. It's a very brave Board of Directors who vote themselves into relegation. In practice the presence of Falkirk and Thistle, and probably Airdrie, meant mothballing League 1 was never going to happen.

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45 minutes ago, Skyline Drifter said:

This is true. The option to mothball would almost certainly have been better for lower league part time clubs but it could never have been a unilateral decision. It would have had to be unanimous or at least the majority of clubs. If the rest of your division want to play you've pretty much no option but to go along with it. It's a very brave Board of Directors who vote themselves into relegation. In practice the presence of Falkirk and Thistle, and probably Airdrie, meant mothballing League 1 was never going to happen.

That's a confusing one.   Moonster said that mothballing would most likely have meant  death for many clubs.  You agreed then stated that mothballing would almost certainly have been better for lower league part time clubs. 

Do you think the part time clubs have no overheads that might have put them at risk ? 

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15 minutes ago, theoriginalhedge said:

That's a confusing one.   Moonster said that mothballing would most likely have meant  death for many clubs.  You agreed then stated that mothballing would almost certainly have been better for lower league part time clubs. 

Do you think the part time clubs have no overheads that might have put them at risk ? 

I think he means if the divisions as a whole had mothballed it would've been the best option. That way nobody gets promoted or relegated, player contracts can be dealt with and fans could've looked to fund raise for any running costs, knowing full well the club would start where it finished when the crowds came back. With some choosing to mothball and others saying they could play, you had the latter clubs demanding promotions and the league body saying (an unknown number of) relegations could be forthcoming for the former.

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3 minutes ago, The Moonster said:

I think he means if the divisions as a whole had mothballed it would've been the best option. That way nobody gets promoted or relegated, player contracts can be dealt with and fans could've looked to fund raise for any running costs, knowing full well the club would start where it finished when the crowds came back. With some choosing to mothball and others saying they could play, you had the latter clubs demanding promotions and the league body saying (an unknown number of) relegations could be forthcoming for the former.

Thanks for that.

Out of interest , do you think there were many who contemplated the mothball option?   I am led to believe that most were very keen to play . 

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5 minutes ago, theoriginalhedge said:

Thanks for that.

Out of interest , do you think there were many who contemplated the mothball option?   I am led to believe that most were very keen to play . 

I think every club wanted to play. I doubt all of them thought it was feasible to do so though and I wouldn't be surprised if some clubs took a bit of a leap of faith and hoped for the best.

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40 minutes ago, theoriginalhedge said:

That's a confusing one.   Moonster said that mothballing would most likely have meant  death for many clubs.  You agreed then stated that mothballing would almost certainly have been better for lower league part time clubs. 

Do you think the part time clubs have no overheads that might have put them at risk ? 

Largely what he said below. Moonster said individually deciding to mothball would have meant death and he's possibly right. I said that doing so en masse would largely have been a more sensible approach than playing but I agree it was a non -starter on an individual basis.

12 minutes ago, The Moonster said:

I think he means if the divisions as a whole had mothballed it would've been the best option. That way nobody gets promoted or relegated, player contracts can be dealt with and fans could've looked to fund raise for any running costs, knowing full well the club would start where it finished when the crowds came back. With some choosing to mothball and others saying they could play, you had the latter clubs demanding promotions and the league body saying (an unknown number of) relegations could be forthcoming for the former.

 

7 minutes ago, theoriginalhedge said:

Thanks for that.

Out of interest , do you think there were many who contemplated the mothball option?   I am led to believe that most were very keen to play . 

I don't think many League clubs contemplated it at all. I think they probably should have though. I also think as I said above the expectation that furlough was going to end in October was a dealbreaker for most who had more than a handful of players under contract. If they were going to have to pay them anyway they may as well play. I think if it had been made clear they could furlough right through to April at the time they'd have been far more likely to give mothballing serious consideration. Most part time clubs, if they don't have a stadium rent to pay and wages are covered, could probably mothball pretty easily. There aren't high fixed costs, a lot of the ongoing work tends to be done by volunteers or committee members,

As I said though, I doubt League 1 clubs at least had much option with the full time clubs at that level making it clear not returning wasn't an option for them.

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4 minutes ago, The Moonster said:

I think every club wanted to play. I doubt all of them thought it was feasible to do so though and I wouldn't be surprised if some clubs took a bit of a leap of faith and hoped for the best.

That is probably about right. 

I have tried to explain how Brechin had prepared for it . What was the Dumbarton approach ? Were they as optimistic ? 

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2 minutes ago, theoriginalhedge said:

That is probably about right. 

I have tried to explain how Brechin had prepared for it . What was the Dumbarton approach ? Were they as optimistic ? 

Dumbarton wanted to play as soon as it was safe and financially viable to do so. We were probably as naïve as other clubs in thinking that fans would be back for October but even the latest statement from our chairman is quite optimistic IMO, despite being very clear that this is the most challenging period in the clubs history.  

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Wonder whether some supporters will have discovered a life without live football and decide not to come back?

either in, say for sake of argument, April or May or next autumn if this season is scrubbed. I think a few will stay away.

I will go back but I haven’t been lying on my bed weeping in despair between 15.00 - 17.00  every Saturday with nothing

to do. What do we recon?

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19 minutes ago, true fan said:

Wonder whether some supporters will have discovered a life without live football and decide not to come back?

either in, say for sake of argument, April or May or next autumn if this season is scrubbed. I think a few will stay away.

I will go back but I haven’t been lying on my bed weeping in despair between 15.00 - 17.00  every Saturday with nothing

to do. What do we recon?

I was speaking with a local journalist who works for a national newspaper last week when in Tesco and he has been looking into fans attitudes towards returning .

He thinks from this that the first few weeks will see larger crowds but in general gates over the season may drop between 20 and 25% due to the number of people who will not ever renew season tickets after whats happened over the last 12 months. No drop off at certain clubs due to season ticket waiting lists but at most where you can walk in most weeks the effect could be massive.

Edited by realmadrid

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11 minutes ago, true fan said:

Wonder whether some supporters will have discovered a life without live football and decide not to come back?

either in, say for sake of argument, April or May or next autumn if this season is scrubbed. I think a few will stay away.

I will go back but I haven’t been lying on my bed weeping in despair between 15.00 - 17.00  every Saturday with nothing

to do. What do we recon?

At the moment there is very little to do at weekends and without the football fix it does sometimes get a bit tedious . Golf is out just now as well due to the weather so it's a double whammy for me. 

On that basis I will be returning .

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Some might be caught up in other things and stick with that. I suppose lifelong attendance is double edged sword: in the blood versus never tried other things. I go on my own, speak to folk at the game. Guess those who have drinks before/after and go with close friends will return
Wonder if several players might retire a year or so earlier as well? But guess there will be big pool of people wanting to be semi-pro - the birds love a semi !

Edited by true fan

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17 hours ago, theoriginalhedge said:

Thanks for that.

Out of interest , do you think there were many who contemplated the mothball option?   I am led to believe that most were very keen to play . 

Our chairman is on record as saying Elgin favoured mothballing the season but was warned of dire consequences if we went down that route. Don’t know if the consequences were financially or SPFL warnings. 

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4 minutes ago, Thom & Gerry said:

Our chairman is on record as saying Elgin favoured mothballing the season but was warned of dire consequences if we went down that route. Don’t know if the consequences were financially or SPFL warnings. 

I didn't recall that at the time .   Good on Elgin though for putting an excellent system in place to allow the games to go ahead. Reports suggest  it was  one of the best organised set ups in the lower leagues. 

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On 18/01/2021 at 16:49, true fan said:

Wonder whether some supporters will have discovered a life without live football and decide not to come back?

either in, say for sake of argument, April or May or next autumn if this season is scrubbed. I think a few will stay away.

I will go back but I haven’t been lying on my bed weeping in despair between 15.00 - 17.00  every Saturday with nothing

to do. What do we recon?

It's only been a couple of weeks.... or have you not been watching the games online at all since October?

I'm intrigued to find out what you've been doing on a Saturday seeing as everything is closed.  I tried doing other things on a Saturday pre-October but they were all shite in comparison (only so much walking round a shopping centre with the family anyone can take) and that's even though watching online is shite compared to the real thing. However the football on a Saturday for me has always been about the whole day out and much more than just the 90 minutes. That's my one day a week of release from normal life.

Edited by Mick1867

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