Alan Stubbs: Hibs keen on league reconstruction

Alan Stubbs has welcomed the prospect of league reconstruction talks after hinting at the monotony of the current top-flight structure in Scotland.
Alan Stubbs says Hibs are keen on league reconstruction. Picture: Paul Devlin/SNSAlan Stubbs says Hibs are keen on league reconstruction. Picture: Paul Devlin/SNS
Alan Stubbs says Hibs are keen on league reconstruction. Picture: Paul Devlin/SNS

However, the Hibernian head coach remains determined to win a place in the Premiership, whichever form it may take, solely on merit.

Falkirk chairman Doug Henderson has been an outspoken advocate of an expanded Premiership, prompting suggestions in some quarters that his team were simply eyeing a back- door route into the top tier.

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Stubbs believes the criticism of the Bairns, who Hibs welcome to Easter Road tomorrow, is unfair, and has echoed the calls for a serious dialogue, insisting supporters are bored with a repetitive fixture list.

“I think the best way to answer that is: as a club we would welcome discussions on league reconstruction,” Stubbs said.

“Do the supporters want to see teams playing each other six times a season? Look at Celtic and Dundee United last season.

“I know the likes of Celtic versus Rangers are big games but do we realistically want to see them play a minimum of four times a season?

“There are vested interests in this and that is why there has to be discussions.”

For Stubbs discussions in Hampden boardrooms are secondary to results on the pitch. One suspects gaining a Premiership place due to league reconstruction, rather than performances, would be a bittersweet pill for him to swallow.

“Falkirk chairman Doug Henderson aired his views on a bigger top-team league in the right way,” noted Stubbs. “However, people have said that he is only saying these things because it’s an easier way back to the top table for Falkirk. So, I don’t want that debate to be used an excuse for not trying to achieve our aims. We want to get into the Premiership on merit. I am not going to get side-tracked on anything other than what we are trying to achieve here.

“We want to be one of the – as it stands – 12 teams in the Scottish Premiership and then we will take it from there, And we want go up to the top flight as champions, we make no bones about that.”

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Discussions over the future of Scottish football have intensified this week after a radical overhaul of the League Cup was announced. The changes have been welcomed by Stubbs, who believes they do not go far enough.

“There are other things I would like to see come into place as well,” he said.

“We should be looking at being able to use more substitutes because we are embracing the concept of a summer tournament – at a time when teams usually embark on their pre-season.

“If you can only use three, then it is going to be hard to manage your pre-season because in the early games you will play one team in the first half and a different one in the second.”