Gretna to fold?

Gretna are in big financial trouble and might not last the season in the SPL. Both Celtic and the huns have beaten them each time so it wouldn’t have any impact on the league winners but it would be shite for the SPL to lose a team during the season.

501 people turned up to watch them today (at short notice admittedly and with a high risk of the game not being on). Obviously that’s nowhere near enough to sustain a professional club. Their owner seems gravely ill - hard to see a way out for them. It’s not like another club that could get taken over, they have been entirley reliant on Mileson’s finances to get to the SPL, they’re not a profitable venture in their own right.

Doubts surface on Gretna future

Caretaker manager Mick Wadsworth admits Gretna face a battle for survival after the 3-0 loss to Dundee United.

Just 501 spectators - a record SPL low - turned up at Fir Park to watch the bottom club slip to yet another defeat.

“There’s a lot of difficulty at the moment. We have got some very important meetings tomorrow,” said Wadsworth.

“The finances and the survival of the club is on everyone’s minds and that takes precedence. We are on a sticky wicket, put it that way.”

Gretna have picked up just 16 points from 28 games in their first season in the top flight.

Although the players have been paid following a delay last month, no money is forthcoming from ill owner Brooks Mileson, who was discharged from hospital last month after being hit with a brain infection.

And Wadsworth could give no guarantees that Gretna would stay afloat until the end of the season.

“People have worked really hard to keep the thing going,” he added.

"All we have done in the past few weeks is patch it up, but we are in a bit of a corner now.

"I’m worried about the immediate future.

"Brooks is very ill, we have no direct contact with Brooks.

"Everything is through Craig, his son, and it has been a tough call for Craig. We have got no financial assitance from that corner because Brooks is ill.

"If his illness is going to be long term then he has every right not to be worrying about a football club next season.

"What we do hope is that we can cobble it together to get through this season so there is a graceful withdrawal if necessary.

"But our major hope is that he gets better and picks up the reins again, because without him we are in a very difficult situation.

“A lot depends on tomorrow’s meetings, which will involve financial people, directors of the club and probably people from the parent company.”

The attendance was less than half the previous low between Gretna and Inverness and came after the match was postponed twice in six days.

“I think the SPL have let us down,” said Wadsworth.

"To turn a game round in less than 48 hours when our public have got to travel the best part of a 200-mile round trip, I thought it was unfair. We wanted to play in a fortnight’s time.

“I bet there were a lot of people who didn’t know this game was on, Rangers and Everton were on telly, Bolton were probably on another channel.”

Weren’t they playing non-league in the not too distant past? Gretna is only a village, how could they ever generate enough revenue to sustain an SPL club anyway. They’ll soon slide back down the divisions.

Livingstone are up for sale for 600,000. Not a bad investment if you think about it. Half way between Glasgow and Edinburgh

Yeah Livingston is a big enough town and it attracts commuters from both Edinburgh and Glasgow - never going to be a huge club obviously but it’s certainly capable of living in the SPL.

Gretna is an example of an owner investing in a small club with no potential. He did very well for them but they’re living way beyond their means.

A great man once said, ‘football without fans is nothing.’ Gretna exemplify that as they don’t have any and the club’s progression is the result of one man’s hobby. Now he’s ill and they’ve nothing to fall back on and there simply isn’t enough interested stakeholders to intervene. They’ve been an embarrassment this season to be honest with their pitiful attendances and playing at Motherwell’s ground.

Gretna have gone into administration this afternoon but it’s expected they’ll at least finish the season. Though if they can’t the gap at the top would be reduced to 1 points as the huns have beaten them 3 times as opposed to Celtic beating them twice. We’re due to play them again before the league split though and should beat them in any case.