Last night, Kilmarnock went down and almost the moment they did, I started getting emails expressing happiness that yet another plastic pitch had been removed from the league.
There is one left. That presents us with an opportunity.
Most clubs have complained about these surfaces, but we’ve never been able to do anything about it because the clubs with a vested interest could veto any motion on the top flight board, and there were three teams with those pitches and that meant change was impossible.
Now, with only one remaining, there is no remaining way that of preventing the SPL from doing away with these infernal things once and for all. Our domestic top flight should not have a quarter of its teams playing on artificial surfaces; we shouldn’t even have one. They are not pleasant to play on.
They do not make for good football. And players get injured on them.
A number of the blogs have already pointed out that there is a now a working majority if the rest of the clubs want to remove them; the CelticBlog is adding its name to the list of those calling for our club to submit a motion to that effect.
These surfaces are banned in every professional division in England although they are permitted for use in the National League.
It is a travesty that our top flight – allegedly the elite level of our game here – permits their use at all … that could change in a matter of weeks.
We were the league who once had a ban on clubs whose stadiums were not up to par; that was a ridiculous rule which was an affront to sporting integrity.
Demanding that football be played on grass is no such thing.
The SFA could easily provide grants to any club which wanted to “upgrade” to actual grass, and it would be better for the game.
Only Livingston’s grotesque plastic pitch remains in our league.
Yes, it would inconvenience them if they had to tear it up and lay grass down and it’s probably unfair to ask them to do that for the start of the next campaign, but beyond that point these things should be removed and never allowed to be used in top flight football in Scotland again.
This shouldn’t even be a matter for real debate.
The votes are there to abolish these things entirely, and our club should be leading the way on seeing it done.