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Sonstrust Says ‘Look to the Future’

July 13, 2012

THE SONSTRUST welcomes the decisive vote of Scottish Football League members, including Dumbarton FC, to settle the question of whether and where to admit Newco Rangers to the SFL.

Trust members and Sons fans have engaged in a passionate debate about the issues involved, and we can all be pleased that Dumbarton’s directors have listened carefully to the range of views expressed before forming a view in the interests of the club and the game.

Getting on for 500 people took part in the Sonstrust’s online poll on the Newco. Nearly 100 people, many of them Trust members and season ticket holders, took part in the public meeting we organised with the Club. Dozens have joined a (mostly) good-natured debate on our website. Many more letters have been written.

The Trust Board has worked hard to keep people regularly informed, to share information and to reflect the views of the fans to the club’s directors. Some wanted us to take a position ourselves, but we felt (and still feel) that this was an issue for the membership as a whole. We hope that the few who have spoken or written in a recriminatory way will now recognise this.

Despite misleading media reports and individual rumours or allegations to the contrary, the Dumbarton FC Board maintained a consistent position of reserving their final decision until all the facts and views had been laid out and explored in detail ahead of the SFL EGM. In the end, they came down with the majority on the Third Division option.

This, however, is unlikely to be the end of the saga. Massive financial challenges now face Scottish football in general and DFC in particular. We hope that all Sons fans will dig deep in terms of commitment and support as the club faces the challenge of the First Division in season 2012/12.

Equally, there is a lot to be done to thwart attempts to reassert ‘business as usual’ in Scottish football, and instead to push for the kind of vital reforms which only started to come onto the table in the past couple of weeks. This includes restructuring around larger leagues, a fairer financial settlement, a pyramid system, the end to the ‘glass ceiling’ at the top tier and other changes that could make the game more competitive, bring back fans, and make commercial interests serve football rather than the other way round.

Such ideas were dismissed by those at the top of the game as “unrealistic” when supporters presented them to the SFA, SPL and SFL earlier this year. Yesterday, all three governing bodies suddenly put ideas heading in this direction on the table. The Sonstrust will work hard with others to ensure that the door now opened is not slammed shut again, that damaging prospects such as SPL2 are kept out, and that real efforts are made to reinvigorate what SFL chief David Longmuir today called “the football economy”.

Please join us in the exciting venture of strengthening Dumbarton FC as a vibrant community club and changing the game we love for the better. If you haven’t already done so, please renew your Sonstrust membership and help us recruit a record number of people again this season. Together, we are stronger, and together we can and must look to the future.

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