Sunday, 1 August 2010

Division E

We need to allow top Scottish teams to play their reserve sides against other sides.
The world cup has just been won by Spain. The runners up were the Netherlands, the 3rd place team, were Germany. All 3 of these European sides allow either reserve sides or youth sides to compete against real teams.
In Germany big sides allow their reserve sides to play up to the third division north.
In Spain big sides can play their reserve teams up to the Spanish second division.
In the Netherlands the youth teams of Ajax play in the Dutch cup.
As a result of this when foreign players get in the way of developing native players, the youth player is not thrown on the scrap heap they instead get another chance to play real teams in real matches.
In the old days in Scotland, if you were the best youth team, player in Scotland all you had to do was get past another Scot to play in the first team.
So a developing striker at Celtic just had to be better than some old Scottish striker who might get sold anyway. Nowadays a developing Scottish striker will have to get past numerous foreign players to get into the first team. Often even when Celtic sell a striker they just buy a another ready made striker to replace him.
So the opportunities for Scottish players to make the grade a re limited at top clubs an infact all SPL sides.
As a result WE as a real team suffer.
I say lets allow all SPL sides to play against real senior pro sides in a new trophy.

My idea is copy the Division C. In Division C Scottish sides would play their reserve teams against sides against first teams of real sides such Berwick, East Stirling etc: So even when a player could not get in first team they still play played against real teams infront of real crowds.
Lets do this again.
This time have less games, so non league teams can carry on in the leagues they still play in and play in the new combined reserve and non league sides leagues.
Create a Division E, F ,G and H. Have promotion and relegation between each divisions.
Invite all 12 SPL reserve sides,
top SFL reserve sides,
Reserve teams from Northern English sides in Cumbria and Northumberland, Yorkshire and Northern Lancashire,
non league sides from Scotland and Northern England.
Have in each division 15 teams that play eachother once a season, so non league sides can carry on playing in the leagues they currently play in too, and SPL reserve sides do not have too pay out for massive long reserve seasons. Have a rule that each division has 6 reserves and 7 non league sides. With at the end of the year the bottom reserve and bottom non league sides are relegated and replaced by the top reserve and non league side from the lower division.

For instance division E might have
Celtic Reserves
Rangers Reserves
Newcastle United Reserves
Hearts Reserves
Hibernian Reserves
Aberdeen Reserves
East Kilbride
Auchinleck talbot
Blyth Spartans
And other non league sides.

So this way we could have competitive league where teams compete each year with their reserve sides.

In the Spanish, German, and Dutch system these separate side plays as totally different squads that cannot be interchanged from week to week. Obviously massive sides like Real Madrid, and Bayern Munich can afford to run separate squads but small SPL sides cannot. I would use the old British system of allowing players to move from reserve to full teams. Except I would have some rules to stop player burn out an to ensure teams were not simply playing their first team in the trophy.
The rule could be no player can play in the reserve team if they played for the first team in the previous 8 days and that only 6 players in the squad can be over 25.
This would ensure teams were genuinely reserve sides and used for developing youth players but that if a player did a good job for the reserve team they could move to the first team and play in Europe for the side.
In the old reserve league in Scotland players could move from reserve sides to first teams week in week out I think this system should be kept, but that this system allows fringe players to get matches.
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