League confusion hampers Fifers

Gordon Durie has welcomed Scott McBride to East Fife.
Gordon Durie has welcomed Scott McBride to East Fife.

DESPITE not being directly affected, the on-going disruption in Scottish football is still hampering East Fife’s 2012-13 season preparations.

Bayview boss Gordon Durie told the Mail the close season has been a “nightmare” as confusion reigns over what division Scottish giants Glasgow Rangers will play in.

Football clubs have been unwilling to commit to pre-season friendly fixtures and players remain unsure about their next move, as a possible league re-structure or a shifting of teams between divisions remains possible.

Durie said: “It’s been a total nightmare to be honest.

“Clubs can’t decide on who they want to play in friendlies because they don’t know what league they’ll be in, while players are also unsure about what deals they should take.

“But I suppose the only thing you can say is that everybody is in the same boat.

“It won’t really be until Friday (when an SFL vote will take place on whether Rangers should be allowed into the lower leagues next year) when teams will know what they’re doing.”

But the Fifers have been able to do some business this close season, with the manager bringing in Paul McManus, Gareth Wardlaw and Scott McBride.

Fife fans will know all about McManus’s capabilities, while the boss says supporters are also in for a treat from the former Raith pair.

“I spoke with John McGlynn (former Raith boss) about Scott McBride and he said he was a good player.

“He’s young, but has experience of playing at a higher level and is a good athlete.

“Gareth Wardlaw is a big, strong player who also has some good experience.”

The manager added that he expects to sign another three or four players from a group who have been taking part in pre-season training.

Among those who were listed as playing in a bounce game over the weekend were former Falkirk striker Collin Samuel and ex-Rangers stopper Bob Malcolm.

East Fife’s pre-season preparations continue tonight (Wednesday) when St Johnstone visit Bayview before Preston Athletic visit Methil on Saturday in a 2pm kick-off.

Durie’s men will then head to East End Park on Wednesday, July 18 where they will take on Fife rivals Dunfermline.