Raith Rovers: Val McDermid says David Goodwillie signing would have broken her dad’s heart

Val McDermid has said it would have broken her father’s heart to see his beloved Raith Rovers’ decision to sign David Goodwillie.

Wednesday, 2nd February 2022, 4:49 pm
Updated Wednesday, 2nd February 2022, 5:12 pm

Her late dad, Jim, was the scout who discovered Jim Baxter and brought him to Stark’s Park.

In an emotional moment in an interview with The Scotsman Sports Show, she said: “For the first time in 34 years I am glad to say my dad is not around to see this.

“It would have broken his heart to see his club behaving like this.”

The Scotsman Sports Show - Matthew Elder, deputy sports editor; Val McDermid; and Allan Crow, editor of the Fife Free Press

The Kirkcaldy born author severed her lifelong ties with the club in protest at Goodwillie’s arrival.She cancelled her sponsorship deal for next season, and tore up her season ticket - and will now focus her support on the women’s team which is also walking away from the club.

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It has shifted its weekend game away from Stark’s Park to the Windmill Campus at the other end of town, and is getting new strips designed - minus the club crest.

It’s the latest fall-out to engulf Rovers over the past 48 hours.

Around 30 volunteers have quit in disgust, two directors have resigned, and the captain of the women’s team has also severed her ties - all in protest at the signing of Goodwillie who was ruled to be a rapist in a civil court case in 2016, but has never faced a criminal trial.

McDermid described the last two days as “horrible” as the club doubled down and insisted Goodwillie’s signing was a “football decision.”

She said: “Football finds its way into your heart. People are devoted to their teams - they become part of your identity.

“I feel like something has been ripped out of me.”

McDermid fears the damage done is “beyond repair” as the club finds itself at the centre of national media attention.

“I cannot see how you roll back from this.

“Even if they tore up his contract tomorrow, which would cost the club a lot of money it can’t afford, it is still the fact they did something so offensive and frankly cackhanded, I do not see how you repair that damage.”

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