David Goodwillie: Clyde FC to 'terminate' loan agreement with Raith Rovers after backlash

Clyde FC have announced they are to terminate their controversial loan deal for David Goodwillie, just hours after it emerged he would be banned by the local council from the stadium.

North Lanarkshire Council wrote to the cinch League One club telling them they would be immediately evicted if the striker enters the Cumbernauld stadium – and will not have the lease renewed under any circumstances in 2023.

Goodwillie rejoined Clyde on loan earlier this week following a furore from Raith Rovers sponsors, employees and supporters after his deadline-day move to Fife.

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There was further criticism from the likes of First Minister Nicola Sturgeon when it emerged Clyde and Raith had agreed a loan deal for the 32-year-old, who was ruled by a judge at a civil court case in 2017 to have raped a woman.

On Thursday evening, Clyde said in a statement: “The club are tonight in the process of terminating the loan agreement with Raith Rovers for David Goodwillie”

North Lanarkshire Council had said it had written to Clyde to exercise a clause in the stadium lease entitling it to “refuse entry to the stadium to any individual on the grounds of undesirable behaviour”.

A statement added: “We have informed the club that David Goodwillie must not be permitted access to the stadium, for any purpose, with immediate effect.

“Should Mr Goodwillie enter the stadium, we will consider the contract to have been breached and we will take immediate steps to terminate it.

David Goodwillie rejoined Clyde on loan.David Goodwillie rejoined Clyde on loan.
David Goodwillie rejoined Clyde on loan.

“In addition, we have informed Clyde FC that the council intends not to renew the lease with the club when the contract for the use of Broadwood Stadium expires in May 2023.

“The council believes in rehabilitation, and has services which provide this. However, Mr Goodwillie has not expressed any contrition in relation to the rape which the court found he had committed in the civil action against him.

“In re-signing Mr Goodwillie, Clyde FC has not acknowledged that background or community concerns, instead choosing to focus on enabling Mr Goodwillie to play football.

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“We regret that this action is necessary. However, the council has a responsibility to the wider community to act, and to send a clear signal that abuse must not be tolerated.”

Former Dundee United, Aberdeen and Blackburn striker Goodwillie scored 109 goals in almost five years with Clyde after joining them following his departure from Plymouth in the wake of the court ruling.

The council pointed out that Broadwood was previously under control of North Lanarkshire Leisure and claimed it was “unable to direct the company in relation to this matter”.

“The stadium, and all the services of the company, have reverted to direct council control,” it added.

Goodwillie returned to action on Tuesday in a Glasgow Cup tie against Rangers B at the Scottish champions’ training ground.

Clyde Ladies Football Club announced on Wednesday that their general manager had resigned and all of their players no longer wished to play for the club.

Raith had originally doubled down on his signing in the face of widespread criticism before performing a U-turn and declaring they would not play him and instead enter into negotiations to end his two-and-a-half-year contract.