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Scottish clubs must live with consequences of decision to have Rangers join the Third Division

Updated: Saturday, 14 Jul 2012 18:35 | Comments

The financial repercussions of the vote to have Rangers newco start in the Third Division will be felt by all Scottish clubs
The financial repercussions of the vote to have Rangers newco start in the Third Division will be felt by all Scottish clubs

Scottish football woke up to the dawn of a new era today after Rangers newco were voted into the Third Division of the Scottish Football League.

At an SFL meeting at Hampden yesterday 29 of the 30 lower league clubs accepted the Ibrox club as an associate member of the SFL while 25 clubs voted in favour of placing the them into the bottom tier.

The decision came despite Scottish Football Association chief executive Stewart Regan claiming that such a move would bring a financial catastrophe and a "slow, lingering death" of the game.

Soon after the vote was announced Scottish Premier League side Inverness CT`s directors convened an emergency board meeting for today to consider the "very serious financial implications" of Charles Green's newco being voted into the bottom tier.

Inverness chairman Kenny Cameron said: "There will now inevitably be serious consequences for the game in Scotland.

"We have all, as clubs, accepted the views of our stakeholders in making the initial judgement to uphold sporting integrity."

Cameron added: "All clubs will now have to live with the repercussions of this decision.

"Scottish football was at a crossroads today in terms of what was on the table for all clubs regarding reorganisation, financial distribution and a road map that would have taken the game forward.

"But this has now been thrown into disarray by this decision. This is a sad day for all clubs in Scotland."

Whilst there was speculation over the formation of an SPL 2 to keep Rangers close to the top flight, with the prospect of the newco being invited straight into the SPL also mooted, Green and Rangers manager Ally McCoist appeared to accept the Govan club's fate.

Green said: "The people who brought shame on this great club are no longer part of it and everyone at Rangers is focused on rebuilding the club on top of a solid financial foundation.

"We wish to play a constructive part in Division Three and encourage our fans to support the other clubs within the league by attending matches and delivering to them the benefits of having Rangers within their league."

McCoist praised the club and its supporters for their patience and hard work during a difficult period.

He said: "Clearly, starting again from the bottom league is not ideal and makes the task of rebuilding Rangers a longer one but the SFL was placed in an impossible situation and I respect its decision.

"I fully supported the fans views that starting again in Division Three maintains the sporting integrity that the SPL clubs were so keen on.

"The SPL clubs and the SFA have made their positions clear over the last few weeks and it remains to be seen what the long term effects of their decisions will be.

"Rangers has been severely punished for the actions of some individuals who previously ran the club and it will take time for us to recover, but we will come back stronger thanks to the loyalty of the fans and the commitment of everyone at Ibrox, who are working tirelessly to bring stability and success back to Rangers."

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