When will anyone aside from Old Firm win the league?

Discussion in 'Scotland' started by thekorean, Mar 1, 2017.

  1. thekorean

    thekorean Member

    Jan 10, 2017
    Club:
    New York City FC
    It has been over 30 years since Aberdeen won the league, and it has been all Old Firm since. Will any other team ever win the league again?
     
  2. holden

    holden Member+

    Dundee FC, Yeovil Town LFC, Girondins de Bordeaux
    Oct 20, 2009
    Los Angeles
    Club:
    Dundee FC
    Probably not unless they both get demoted at the same time for some reason unrelated to league performance. Those two can just outspend all the other teams by so much, it's hard for the smaller teams to compete with them. It's Rangers first season back in the Premiership and look where they're already at.
     
  3. thekorean

    thekorean Member

    Jan 10, 2017
    Club:
    New York City FC
    Even for football standard it's a bit much. La Liga is dominated by Real and Barca but even they have occasional wins by Atletico and Valencia.

    Seems like the best shots would be Hearts and Hibs.
     
  4. holden

    holden Member+

    Dundee FC, Yeovil Town LFC, Girondins de Bordeaux
    Oct 20, 2009
    Los Angeles
    Club:
    Dundee FC
    While attendance numbers aren't everything, I think they can help explain the discrepancy.

    In La Liga, Barcelona is first with 80k per game, Real Madrid is second with 68k, and Atletico comes in 3rd at 43.5k per game. So Atletico gets 57% of Barcelona's attendance and 65% of Real's. In Scotland, Celtic is first with 54.8k per game, Rangers are second with 49k, and Hearts are in 3rd with 16.4k per game. That's only 30% of Celtic's attendance and 33.5% of Rangers' attendance for Hearts. (If you compare the top attendance to the middle attendance, it's even more stark. Las Palmas gets 26% of Barcelona's attendance and their average of 20k is still more than Hearts' average. Kilmarnock get 9% of Celtic's average.)

    So as you can see, there's a much bigger difference in support between Celtic/Rangers and Hearts than there is between Barcelona and Atletico (Hibernian isn't even in the Premiership at the moment, but when they were last in they averaged below Aberdeen). So although Edinburgh is large enough that you'd expect their teams to be able to compete with the Glasgow teams, they just don't get the support that those two do.
     
  5. Jamooky

    Jamooky Member+

    Mar 24, 2006
    Cleveland, OH USA
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    Country:
    United States
    Old Firm? When's the next time Celtic doesn't win it? This is a monopoly.
     
  6. thekorean

    thekorean Member

    Jan 10, 2017
    Club:
    New York City FC
    Rangers will be back though.
     
  7. chungachanga

    chungachanga Member

    Dec 12, 2011
    I don't even know what would have to happen. Celtic / Rangers won't collapse both at the same time, especially now with fair play rules limiting everyone.

    Some crazy rich guy would have to buy one of the little clubs maybe? But with fair play, he would have to be willing to play in Scotland only, because he wouldn't be able to spend freely and play in Europe. Plus it won't happen anyway, Scottish league isn't sexy anymore. Unless some local Scotsman football fanatic builds the next Facebook and becomes a multi billionaire.

    Maybe if Scotland gained independence, that would even the field a little, if they'd also change immigration rules. UK migration laws hurt little clubs more than they hurt big clubs. If their laws were closer to Portuguese / Dutch, all clubs would fish for cheaper talent overseas. Right now the little clubs rely mainly on weak local pool, while Celtic buys their best players.
     
  8. thekorean

    thekorean Member

    Jan 10, 2017
    Club:
    New York City FC
    I mean, Leicester won PL so, anything is possible right?
     
  9. GunnerJacket

    GunnerJacket Moderator
    Staff Member

    Sep 18, 2003
    Gainesville, GA
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    Yes, under 5,000-1 odds. For the foreseeable future it might take likewise for a non-Old Firm club to win the SPL.

    Because of the revenue discrepancies it means teams will be hard pressed to match the talent levels of the Glascow pair even for a single season, so it will certainly take its fair share of luck with regard to injuries, fortunes on the pitch, etc. It will also probably take an uncanny grouping of youth or previously unheralded players that will have a reason to be at, say, Hearts rather than a bigger club.

    The other thing that would help is for 1-2 other teams to come along and at least offer stronger competition. Leicester won in large part because the giants of the league kept beating each other up while LCFC themselves were quite miraculously sneaking out wins. So if in the same year Aberdeen and Hibs took enough points from the Old Firm but somehow Hearts was able to nick wins in those same matches it would help give them a chance.

    Ultimately this won't be viable until the SPL offers the resources to the other clubs to be more competitive without the need for such great luck. The odds of that happening, however...
     
  10. chungachanga

    chungachanga Member

    Dec 12, 2011
    EPL is more equal, Leicester or Sunderland only has ~2-3 times smaller payrolls than the likes of Chelsea. In Scotland, Celtic has 2-3 times the payroll of Rangers, 5 times of Aberdeen, 8 times of Hearts and 12-17 times of everyone else.

    Also, in Scotland you have to play Celtic and Rangers 4 times each, if you want to win the title. It makes it less random, harder for a small club to sneak by. I don't think they'll ever change that structure (more likely they could go the other way and make it 5 games each between contenders).
     
  11. thekorean

    thekorean Member

    Jan 10, 2017
    Club:
    New York City FC
    Scottish Premiership needs wage cap.
     
  12. GunnerJacket

    GunnerJacket Moderator
    Staff Member

    Sep 18, 2003
    Gainesville, GA
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    Ideally, every league should have one of some sort. Or enough countermeasures to endow smaller clubs with the resources to be more competitive.
     
  13. chungachanga

    chungachanga Member

    Dec 12, 2011
    #13 chungachanga, May 19, 2017
    Last edited: May 19, 2017
    There also needs to be some sort of protection of small leagues from UEFA money. Champions league cash is too big. Smaller countries only get 1 Champions league spot, and that club, if it wins a couple qualifying rounds, gets an enormous amount of cash by their local league standards. If one club is naturally bigger and also gets CL money a few times in a row, it starts a cycle that's hard to get out.

    I don't see how the Rangers are going to catch Celtic. Celtic are so far ahead right now, and they'll get CL cash every year, while the Rangers have an ownership mess, probably lost a lot of overseas fans because of being invisible for years, and haven't even done proper stadium repairs since their financial problems started, so that's almost 10 years now.

    Rangers have so many leaks, so much to fix before they are competitive, and even if they do a great job, Celtic will still be the favorite because of CL money. What are the odds of Celtic losing the title in the next 10 years.
     
  14. chungachanga

    chungachanga Member

    Dec 12, 2011
    Celtic finish the season with no league losses. FA cup final next Saturday, if they get that, they'll have all 3 domestic trophies with not a single loss.
     

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