Scottish Cup exit in Highlands leaves Berwick Rangers facing cash crisis
Manager Stuart Malcolm’s Scottish Lowland Football League outfit had been hoping for a run in the cup to help them balance their books but were knocked out of its first round away to Brora Rangers on Saturday.
That early exit leaves them facing a six-figure loss without the prospect of money-spinning cup ties against higher-level opposition to offset it.
Their Scottish Highland Football League hosts’ 5-1 win earns them a trip to Scottish League Two’s Stenhousemuir in the second round of the cup at the end of October.
The Sutherland side’s scorers at Dudgeon Park were Andy MacRae with a hat-trick on 21 minutes, 41 and 66, Jordan MacRae on 38 and Max Ewan on 57, with David Ferguson netting for the Northumbrians on 29.
A spokesperson for Berwick said: “Our Scottish Cup campaign, a potentially lucrative source of income for all clubs at our level, is now over.
“Although we are still awaiting our final audited accounts, it is likely we will be reporting a loss of £115,000 for the financial year ending on May 31, 2023.
“A loss of that magnitude simply cannot be repeated, and changes are now afoot to prevent it happening again.
“Our early Scottish Cup exit, combined with currently sitting mid-table in the league and the financial position the club find themselves in, mean that urgent action is required.
“Stuart has been included in our discussions as we look to address the financial position of the club. We remain committed to working with Stuart as he seeks to restructure his squad within a budget that will ensure the club have the playing and administrative resources to continue to operate.
“In the short term, our aim is to ensure the club reach the end of the season with money in the bank, allowing us to stabilise the finances of the team next year. That will then provide us with the solid footing needed to enact a longer-term strategy for the club.”
Next up for Rangers on the pitch is a trip to Linlithgow Rose this coming Saturday, with kick-off at 3pm.
They go into that fixture sitting eighth in the table, level on 15 points with their seventh-placed hosts but having played one game more, ten to Rose’s nine.