We’ve been let down by Celtic, says Borders club chief

The chairman of a Borders East of Scotland Football League football team claims his club, and others like it, have been let down by Old Firm giants Celtic.

Thursday, 14th January 2021, 4:15 pm
Peebles Rovers chairman Colin Macdonald ios among those getting shirty about Celtic's visit to Dubai.

Colin Macdonald, chairman at Peebles Rovers, says lower-tier clubs are being harshly punished by the Scottish Football Association’s decision to suspend football beneath Championship level in Scotland for three weeks.

Celtic have been heavily criticised for going on a warm-weather winter training camp to Dubai and seemingly disregarding Covid social distancing rules. One player later tested positive for the condiion and around 15 other club personnel are in self-isolation.

“We are in tier seven and the Scottish Government has decisions to make on information they get healthwise, but I think Celtic, based on the club they are, have a duty to set an example,” said Mr Macdonald.

“Clubs in the top two flights receive much more than the lion’s share of funding and, as such, they have responsibility. I think it’s unfair that the lower leagues are penalised.”

Peebles had a friendly game at Haddington last week and there was social distancing, a full Covid list and temperature readings, while they’d been working in bubbles in training.

“To see people jetting off to the other side of the world is a bit of a sickener,” added Mr Macdonald.”

National Lottery funding had been a big help, he added, but it did not compensate the likes of Rovers for the amount of revenue they’ve lost.

“It certainly hasn’t helped that one of our premier clubs has gone away and highlighted an issue we knew was there,” he said. “Covid-19 is the enemy and that is what we are fighting. Football comes second to that.”