Status quo not an option for Hutton

The SFL vote to put Rangers into the 3rd Division.  Turnball Hutton of Raith Rovers leaving the press conference at Hampden today. Picture Robert Perry The Scotsman 13th July 2012

The SFL vote to put Rangers into the 3rd Division. Turnball Hutton of Raith Rovers leaving the press conference at Hampden today. Picture Robert Perry The Scotsman 13th July 2012

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TURNBULL Hutton has called on Scottish football to keep league reconstruction on the agenda despite this week’s vote against the proposed changes.

The Raith Rovers chairman was left disappointed after a meeting of SPL clubs on Monday failed to produce enough support for the 12-12-18 format currently on the table.

Ten SPL clubs were in favour of the changes, which would have resulted in more finances for division one clubs and one governing body, but the SPL voting structure requires an 11-1 majority, and the decision of Ross County and St Mirren to oppose was enough to scupper the plans.

As a result, the SFL vote scheduled to take place tomorrow (Friday) was cancelled, and the SFL board have instead decided to meet today to assess the situation.

First Division clubs have also been invited to a meeting set up by Hamilton Accies on Monday to discuss the setback, but the Raith position is clear.

“The status quo is not an option as far as I’m concerned,” Hutton told the Press.

“It can’t just be left where it is.

“If all the good things were agreed upon, and deemed worthy of all the effort, I don’t see how we just walk away from it.

“We look on it as a setback, because there has to be enough goodwill out there to try and do something to move it forward.

“Maybe when the dust settles someone will have the energy to try again.”

Hutton believes there are a variety of ways in which league reconstruction could still happen.

He explained: “The 10 SPL clubs who wanted change could decide they are not happy and push for it again.

“The division one clubs could decide we’re the ones who’ve suffered most out of this and do something to try and force the issue.

“The SFL could come out of its meeting on Thursday with something wonderful that moves things forward.

“Or Scottish football could collapse entirely and we start again.”

For the time being, Hutton and the rest of the Rovers board will begin planning for next season in division one - in its current guise.

“Raith Rovers on its own is not going to change the face of Scottish football,” he said.

“We can only sit tight, see what the SFL board come up with, let the shockwaves settle in the SPL, and draw breath.

“If something is offered that is of benefit to us and other division one clubs we will revisit that in the fullness of time.

“A breakaway SPL2 is not on anyone’s official agenda - had we wanted that we would have signed up to Rangers parachuting into the first division last year.

“First division clubs could have made it easy for themselves but we did the right thing and held out for a solution that benefitted all 42 league clubs.

“If any SPL2 proposal was brought forward, it would be a sign that the SFL as organisation wasn’t working.”

MATTHEW ELDER

Twitter: @mattelder_ffp