East Stirlingshire manager Derek Ure says plans for next season on hold amid uncertain times

East Stirlingshire manager Derek Ure says they have had to "take a step" back and put preparations for next season "on hold" during these uncertain times.

By Martyn Simpson
Monday, 4th May 2020, 11:38 am
Updated Monday, 4th May 2020, 11:40 am
East Stirlingshire manager Derek Ure says the priority at the moment has to be protecting the club

Had the season progressed as normal then the Lowland League would have come to its conclusion last Saturday and many clubs, including The Shire, would have plans well underway for next season.

However, it is still unclear when a new season will be able to get underway and Ure says the priority right now has to be looking after the club.

"A lot of uncertainty meant we had to take a step back and evaluate what we're doing.

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"We've got to make sure we look after our club the best we possibly can and don't make rash or stupid decisions at this time.

"I've spoke to the board and we've come to the conclusion it's best to leave things like negotiating deals with players a couple of weeks till we better know where we are at.

"To progress you always have to have one eye on next season.

"The club had been looking towards that for a long time, we always have one eye on the future but you have to concentrate on the present time.

"The club have been good, they want to plan ahead as well but where we are at with the coronavirus it will have a knock on effect on every club in Scotland. "

Another uncertainty for next season is is Kelty Hearts, who were declared champions when the Lowland League season was prematurely brought to an end, will return to fight for the title again or if they will be playing their football in the SPFL.

Normally the Lowland League champions would enter the pyramid play-off with the Highland League champions and the bottom club of SPFL League 2 for a place in that division restructuring plans are currently being discussed - many of which would see Kelty and Highland counterparts Brora left out.

Ure, whose Shire side started last season seeking the title and promotion back to the SPFL, says any restructure should take the two champions in to account but disagrees with the initial decision to award titles.

"My opinion is they shouldn't have been crowned champions without playing a full season but to take away the chance for them to go up would be quite unfair.

"I hope they get the opportunity to progress and the restructuring has to take that in to place.

"There's a few restructure ideas out there, I'm not a fan of 14-14-14 where there's no promotion from the Lowland League and Highland League , if we have a pyramid structure we have to protect it."