Rangers have received a significant boost after Old Firm B teams were voted into the Lowland League, but plenty of fans of other clubs aren’t happy.
Earlier this month, the Lowland League held an initial vote on a proposal that would see Rangers and Celtic Colts enter the league for one season only.
Neither team could be promoted or relegated but the presence of the Old Firm would generate increased interest in the league.
At the SLFL AGM on Thursday night, a second vote was held and the proposal was officially passed after a majority of clubs backed it.
“The member clubs have voted in favour of this proposal that was put to them earlier this month,” said league chairperson George Fraser [SLFL.co.uk]
“Whilst it wasn’t unanimous the majority of member clubs are in favour of it and ultimately the members made the decision, which is only right in a democracy.
“Our Board will now get to work on moving forward with plans to get the new season started on July 17.”
The Scottish Lowland Football League can confirm that the majority of member clubs have voted in favour of admitting Rangers and Celtic ‘B’ teams into the league next season – for one year only.
— Scottish Lowland League 🏴 (@OfficialSLFL) May 27, 2021
Both Rangers and Celtic would prefer to have their B teams playing in the SPFL but this news still represents a significant boost for both clubs, who have been championing the idea of Colts sides entering established leagues for many years.
While top prospects will no doubt still head out on loan to Premiership and Championship clubs, entry into the Lowland League will allow those at earlier stages in their development access to regular competitive football and a chance to play alongside one another, aiding the development of a club-wide playing style.
The initial vote from Lowland League members was heavily criticised by fans of other clubs, though, who claim it undermines the spirit of the pyramid and there were plenty of angry responses to Thursday night’s update.
Here’s a selection of reactions from Twitter:
Hopefully @spfl clubs will shut off the @OfficialSLFL from the pyramid. Absolute sell-outs those clubs who have voted for this & I feel sorry for the fans of all the clubs in this league who are going to have to put up with the consequences
— Iain (@IAM808) May 27, 2021
1 year only, WHY? Disgraceful decision to allow it.
— William Stewart (@William04150909) May 27, 2021
Will the votes be published so I know which teams to still go and watch?
This absolutely stinks. What price integrity? About £2.5k it seems. Embarrassing.
— Dave Hedgehog (@DaveHedgehog11) May 27, 2021
— Steven Graham (@stevengkfc) May 27, 2021
— An (@EuanShire) May 27, 2021
Really, really poor and short-sighted decision.
— Steve (@FarFlungFatty) May 27, 2021
A disgusting decision which belittles the SFLL and smacks of self interest. I’m bemused as to why these two COLT teams shouldn’t start at the bottom of the pyramid if they want to join it. Could someone who authorised this please explain why? Thank you
— Jackie’s (@jackrosss) May 27, 2021