This week Charles Green, Rangers chief executive, has come out saying that Rangers and Celtic moving to English football can, and will happen within the next five years.
A growing number of Rangers fans are supporting the campaign to get the Glaswegian club out of Scottish football and in to the English tier system. If Rangers were to go, it makes sense for their Old Firm rivals to follow.
However, take a look at some of the facts and you quickly realise that what may be good for the Old Firm clubs could be seriously detrimental for the rest of Scottish football.
Scottish Premier League attendances will suffer.
Green said that moving to the English league would be better for the stadiums that don’t fill up on a regular basis, saying that Celtic and Rangers in the Conference would ensure every stadium fills up. But what would it do to attendance in the SPL? Nothing good. The game is already in peril in Scotland, as people don’t go to see their teams play, unless they’re playing the Old Firm.
Say good-bye to the Champions League
Celtic and Rangers playing in the premier league wouldn’t make it to the Champions League. They’re probably better than the majority of teams in England, but I don’t think they’re nearly as good as the Manchester clubs, Chelsea, Tottenham or Arsenal. So although they’d make more money by playing in more games against English opposition, their fans wouldn’t be happy losing the opportunity for the European Game.
Who would go to the Champions League from Scotland?
Celtic and Rangers are a mile ahead of any other tem in the Scottish game. If they were to leave the SPL for the English football league that would lead to Scottish teams without the pedigree of the Old Firm, playing in Europe’s premier tournament, which would end up being embarrassing for everybody.
It might never happen; it might happen tomorrow, but a growing number of Scots want independence. If it does happen, after Celtic and Rangers move to the English league that causes all kinds of political and economic problems, as well as European Union problems for the players, as Scotland would have to reapply for the EU as an independent country.
Maybe I’m being pessimistic about the whole thing, but having the Old Firm in Scotland seems to be where it belongs.
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