Season 2011/12 has only just begun, and no mater what happens on the domestic front in Scotland, it will be remembered for one thing only, the fact that before either the Champions or Europa leagues had even begun properly, all Scotlands representatives had been knocked out in the qualifying rounds (In my team, Rangers case, knocked out both competitions). Now we could blame dodgy ref decisions all day but the simple fact is Scottish football is a joke, Our national team hasn't been at a major tournament since the World Cup in France 1998, and as for our domestic clubs, well where do i start.
Last night saw Rangers, Celtic and Hearts all crash out of the Europa League at the qualifying stage, now Hearts had it tough, they were up against Premiership big buns Tottenhanm Hotspur (the English team i support) and despite a 5-0 thrashing at home, they put up a brave fight against albeit an under strengthed spurs squad and came away from White Heart Lane with a little pride intact after a 0-0 draw. The Old Firm teams on the other hand were a disgrace, Celtic going down 3-1 away to FC Sion after drawing 0-0 at home last week and Rangers drawing 1-1 at home to NK Maribor after a 2-1 away defeat last week. Now no disrespect to Sion or Maribor, but who the fuck are they??, nobodies, that's who, and for the so called might of the SPL to be humbled by them is nothing more than embarrassing, a fact made even worse when you hear that Stoke City and Shamrock rovers also managed to qualify.
Things need to change in Scottish football, and fast, because the current set up just isn't working, though one thing is for certain, despite what people have been saying for years now, Rangers and Celtic should never be allowed into the English league, mainly because they are Scottish teams, but also because they would end up getting beat by teams like Acrington Stanley (who are they? exactly!).What we need is a 16 team top tier league with the focus on Scottish players, you just have to look at how well the scotland under 21 squad do to see that there is young talent out there itching to do the job for any clubs willing to give them that chance to shine, also limit the number of foreigners coming in to 4 in a squad, most if not all only come here to put themselves in the shop window so other big clubs notice them (why is beyond me, its like putting caviar in Aldi's window).
The Scottish government needs to get more involved with the SFA to see that more money is invested at grass roots, encourage more schools to have an active football team, offer more training camps during school holidays, and get popular footballers to offer coaching.
Of course non of this will fix the immediate problem, that is up to the managers themselves to sort out the teams, find the players willing to play for the shirt, and those who are only interested in the pay cheque should be shown the door. With time and effort we can get Scottish Football back on the map, and make us a proud nation again.