Ex-Celtic boss Gordon Strachan says season must be completed

Gordon Strachan.
Photo by Paul Chappells.Gordon Strachan.
Photo by Paul Chappells.
Gordon Strachan. Photo by Paul Chappells. | PAUL CHAPPELLS
Gordon Strachan says the current football season must be played to completion or it’ll lead to never ending legal battles.

Former Scotland boss Strachan, also a title winning manager with Celtic, says that ‘one way or another’ clubs must come up with a way to play all remaining fixtures.

His former side are on the brink of clinchin yet another Premiership trophy, but there are still relegation, title and play-off issues to be settled in the top division and those below.

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Strachan said: “One way or another, you have to finish this season – it’s not financially huge in Scotland, it’s not a billion quid, but you’ll never get anyone to agree to missing out on promotion or getting relegated when it’s taken out of their hands.

“It’s too tricky, too political, and too divisive.

“The plan seems to be finish the Premier League. That’s great. And then to promote Dundee United, which nobody would have a problem with, because they’re so far ahead.

“But after that it gets complicated. So, for everyone’s sake, I think you have to play the rest of the games. I don’t care where, or who’s watching, just play them.

“I hear a lot of people talking about doing what’s best for Scottish football. Really? Is anyone actually doing that? Football has always been about looking out for number one. If the season is cut short, you’ll have teams looking into all sorts of legal loopholes.

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“Football could be stuck in legal battles forever. Literally. If you’ve got clever enough lawyers, they’ll make sure it lasts forever.

“Which is fair enough, it’s what you’d want your team to do if you were relegated without being able to play the games. If you’ve got a shot of staying up, you don’t want to give up.”

Strachan insists there could well be plenty of twists, turns and shocks to come should the remaining games be played out and things may not be as cut and dried as they appear.

“Stupid things can happen in football, I know that from experience,” he said.

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“When I was at Celtic we were something like eight points behind Rangers with ten games to go, and we won the league.

“If you ask everybody what they’d want to do, they’d all say play the rest of the season.

“Is that even possible? I don’t know. Right now we don’t know when we’re going to be able to leave our homes, let alone playing football.

“But why cancel this season? Change next season – we can reorganise the leagues, we can squeeze it in if needed. We can take 14 or 16 teams into a league for one season only, and just play each other twice next season.

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“We can cut next season short, lose things like the League Cup, but we have to finish this season first.

“I’m sure even Celtic will want to win the games that officially makes them champions. And then, if the season is played, if a club is relegated they can have no arguments.”

Gordon Strachan was speaking exclusively to Paddy Power News. To read more, visit news.paddypower.com

* For more from Paddy Power’s columnists, visit: news.paddypower.com

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