Newco Rangers set for early Balmoor encounter


On Friday, July 13, the Newco Rangers Football Club were denied access to the Scottish Football League’s Division 1, with, it is understood, 25 of the 30 SFL clubs against proposals that would see the Newco drop into the second tier of Scottish football.

Instead, Rangers will begin the 2012-13 season anew in the third division.

Many clubs had made their intentions to vote against the Newco being allowed a place in the first division early, with the Peterhead FC making their intentions known in a club statement prior to Friday’s meeting.

“We have now received proposals that have been thrashed out between the SFA, SPL and our own SFL a mere 36 hours prior to Friday’s meeting,” it said.

“While we have always stated that we would welcome proposals for league reconstruction independent of the Rangers crisis, we are left with a sense of wonderment at many of the newly proposed changes to the League; changes that were deemed wholly unworkable prior to Newco Rangers application to join the SFL after expulsion from the SPL.

“Although we are to come under severe pressure from bodies outwith the SFL to accept these fast-tracked changes to accommodate at Newco team and to hail this proposal as a ‘blue print to safeguard the future of Scottish Football’, we must retain our stance and those of the majority of our fans to vote NO.

“We still believe that to maintain fairness in our game and to restore faith in Scottish Football there is no alternative but to admit a Newco team into Division 3 . . .

“. . . Our fans have made their feelings very clear over this issue and we have listened and taken on board all comments.

“We hope that voting to admit a Newco team into Division 3 will unite fans to vote with their feet to support their local team and help preserve our Scottish game,” the statement read.

Newco Rangers will make their first appearance in Division Three against the Blue Toon on Saturday, August 11.

With Peterhead Chairman Roger Morrison urging fans to ‘vote with their feet’, life in the bottom tier of Scottish football may not get off to the best of starts for the depleted Glasgow side when they meet an expectant Blue Toon crowd.

Meanwhile, the Blue Toon have wasted no time in bolstering their squad for the new season, adding two more faces to a team that just missed out on promotion.

In a statement online, manager Jim McInally told fans: “We have strengthened our squad with the signing of Stephen Maguire and goalkeeper Michael Andrews from Montrose.

“Stephen is a player I know well and had a season in junior football last year which I think will have done him good,” adding that he believed Maguire would provide “competition to the other strikers” in the squad.

“Michael again is a boy I know well; he was my keeper at the shire and had a terrific season for us on loan from Falkirk,” he said.

He was then gutted to have been released from Falkirk after their relegation and I’m sure that was a factor in his loss of confidence last season. Hopefully, him knowing that I know his qualities will help him get back to being the keeper that he can be.

“We have also added young Shaun Robertson and Greg Alexander and we’ll see over the next couple of weeks if we’re going to add to the squad,” added McInally.

From within, David Ross and Scott Ross both signalled their intentions to resign for the new season, with Martin Bavidge, Rory McAllister, Brian Deasley, Callum McDonald and Roy McBain all still under contract to the Blue Toon.