SFA chief executive Stewart Regan has no intention of resigning

By Chris McLaughlinSenior Football Reporter, BBC Scotland

Stewart Regan has no plans to resign as Scottish FA chief executive despite criticism of his handling of the crisis resulting from Rangers' demise.

Some club chairmen called for his resignation after voting against the new club playing in Division One.

"I am sure there are a whole raft of things that I could have done better and my colleagues could have done better," Regan told BBC Scotland.

"But I am here until I deliver the remaining parts of the McLeish Report."

Some Scottish Football League club chairmen made a failed attempt to have a vote of no confidence in Regan after they voted for the new Rangers to start life in Division Three.

But Regan suggested that the process that began with the reigning Scottish champions going into administration last season had been "the most challenging and complex" ever to face Scottish football and that he had to rise above "petty and personal" criticism.

"Two years ago, I was headhunted to come in and modernise Scottish football and take the game forward," he said. "We've made huge strides.

"We've been through a period of unprecedented change, completely restructured the Scottish FA board and the administration of the game and there remain a number of challenges left for me to deliver.

"I remain committed to those and I will work hard to restore the unity we had until a few weeks ago."

Aspects of the Henry McLeish Report that have not yet been implemented include a 10-club top tier and a pyramid structure to allow successful non-league clubs entry to Division Three.

The new Rangers made their debut in the Ramsdens Cup against Brechin on Sunday
The new Rangers made their debut in the Ramsdens Cup against Brechin on Sunday

However, in return for Rangers playing in Division One, the SFL clubs had been offered a deal including an expansion of the SPL from its present 12 clubs.

Rangers at one stage had claimed that a second tier of the SPL would be created that would help hasten their rise back to the top flight.

Regan, though, insisted that any restructuring would be "in the best interests of all 42 clubs".

"What's important is for the key people to come to the table from the Scottish Premier League and the Football League to come to the table with ourselves to look at what can be achieved," he said.

"At this stage, there is no plan for a reconstructed top tier."

Regan admitted that a headline resulting from his prediction of social unrest should Rangers cease to exist was "not particularly helpful" but defended his claim that it could lead to the slow death of Scottish football.

"Meetings are taking place as we speak to try to save some of the finances from contracts, whether they be television, other broadcasting, advertising, media and so on," he said.

"We won't know for some time just what those financial consequences will be, but undoubtedly there will be a difficult period ahead for Scottish football.

"I said at the time that Rangers going anywhere other than the top two divisions wasn't in the best interests of the game.

"I think we've all got to try to work hard to prevent the death of Scottish football and prevent the challenges materialising that could materialise if money drips out of the game."

Regan stressed that the much-criticised plan to have Rangers play in Division One was not something devised by the SFA but had been agreed with the SPL, SFL and the club itself.

An agreement that would give the new club the SFA membership it needed to play its first game of the season only came two days before Rangers' 2-1 win over Brechin City in the Ramsdens Cup first round.

"The Scottish FA needed to be satisfied that the people involved at Rangers Football Club were going to act in the best interest of the club, the best interests of the fans and the best interest of the other stakeholders in the game, the leagues and the clubs," he said.

"We needed information. Pieces of that information, financial information, we didn't get until during the last week and consequently we weren't able to make our decision until we had every piece of the jigsaw in place.

"There were negotiations taking place over media rights. There were negotiations taking place over sanctions. There were negotiations taking place over the practicalities of organising the match at the weekend.

"We did deal with them as effectively and efficiently as we could in the circumstances."

Top Stories