Queen’s Park has recruited from junior leagues over the past few years to augment players which our youth division develop under the guidance of Gardner Spiers and our youth development coaches, to add to what remains from the squad the previous year. Not many remaining this year!
Large changes have taken place just below the Lowland League with many former junior clubs ‘crossing the divide’ from East of Scotland juniors to the East of Scotland league. What has taken the game in Scotland by surprise is the large number of clubs who took the jump and with what seems very little notice.
The format of the East of Scotland league has been re-organised now featuring three distinct ‘conferences’ with play offs arranged at the season end to decide who competes to enter the Lowland League. What is intriguing, is what will happen in the West, will it follow suit, and will there be the creation of a West of Scotland league, which takes in junior clubs and provides a pathway to the senior leagues.
What is clear is that there is potential for a ‘log-jam’ at East of Scotland level, where progressive ex-junior clubs such as Boness United, Bonnyrigg Rose and Linlithgow Rose attempt to navigate their way through to the senior leagues via an increasingly competitive Lowland League. That being said the Lowland & Highland league winners have found it tough to beat the club residing in last place in the ‘Top 4 divisions’.
I’ve had the personal view for a number of years that Scottish Football should be a meritocracy, where the best performing clubs find their level, whilst ensuring that the clubs infrastructure is of an acceptable licensed standard and that there is transparency around what players are receiving as payment.
The task for Queen’s Park is clear, attempt to create a plan which means we consistently achieve the highest league place we can and aim to pass the clubs ahead of us in the pyramid rather than concern ourselves below us, however interesting the football and the politics of the football below us is.
Enjoy the football!