Ally McCoist believes the acceleration of Rangers through the Scottish league set-up could be to the “benefit” of financially-stricken clubs.
The Ibrox manager joined chief executive Charles Green this week in calling for Rangers to leapfrog the majority of current Irn-Bru Second Division sides – if league reconstruction goes ahead – and be placed in the second level under the proposed 12-12-18 set-up.
Rangers are on their way to winning the Third Division and both men feel that under the proposals the club would not be promoted in the event, given that they would be joined in the third tier by every other side in the bottom league.
McCoist also believes awarding his side a double promotion could bring some much needed money to opposition clubs.
“Scottish football is in a sorry state right now so we have to do what’s best for the benefit of the game,” said the manager. “Dunfermline are clearly in trouble just now, Hearts have troubles too and we have obviously had our well-documented problems so we must do something that is mutually beneficial to Scottish football. If moving us into the second 12 means that there will be such a benefit then surely it has to happen.”
McCoist believes a precedent was set by Stranraer in the 1993/94 season. The Scottish leagues were to be expanded to four divisions in the following season, with the Stair Park side winning the third-tier title. Stranraer, as champions, moved up one level to the new second tier, with five clubs being relegated as the First Division contracted from 12 teams to ten.
“I really feel that the precedent set by the Stranraer situation in 1994 should be followed,” he said. “We are in a position where we are close to winning the championship and hopefully promotion. In our eyes, if 12-12-18 is implemented and we are in the 18 then I don’t see us getting promotion. The argument would be that we would in the third tier but I don’t buy that because every other team in the league would be getting promotion with us. I don’t think that is fair – especially when a precedent has been set.”
However, Stranraer vice-chairman Iain Dougan said: “We don’t feel it is the same situation as [in 1993/94]. We were expanding the leagues from three to four divisions, this time we’re slimming the leagues. It is not the same scenario.”