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In the latest of our Lockdown Interviews we have been speaking to the gaffer, Phil McGuire and getting his take on the current situation.

Hi Phil, How have you been coping so far, in your case being is isolation?

Spending time with the family is very good, it is a world removed away from most people’s normal daily routines in these testing times. There are many people facing this virus day in day out in tough times on the frontline, so making sacrifices and being asked to stay at home to protect lives should be straight forward for everyone else.

Have you been in contact with the squad?

Yes, I have been in touch with the squad at various times as a group and individually, it is difficult however because as a squad we are close and enjoy working together, along with the normal dressing room banter that takes place.

Have you set specific requirements for the squad?

Yes and no, the players are honest guys and have been doing their own work and know what kind of fitness routines we have implemented in the past. Now in lockdown, I think it is a case of each individual doing what they need to do in their daily routines with their families at this time.

As someone who has played the game at the highest level, how will the full-time pros be coping?

I think initially they may have thought it would pass, but they will be experiencing the same as feelings as most people are going through, whatever the workplace, with frustrations at wanting to work, compete, and do their normal jobs within the footballing environment. Yes, they will be more active in their workout routines but that only goes so far and will crave that competitive edge in training and matches.

What are your thoughts on the announcement that the season is finished with further discussions on what happens as far as standings are concerned?

This is something that does frustrate me, the Highland League awarded Brora the title, which they would have most likely won but I still don’t think it is right as prize money and final placings could have changed if it was based on average points, yes it is unprecedented times but I believe solutions have to be confirmed.

Everyone knows a season is over however number of games, but to null and void is not the answer when we are in the last part of a season and opens up a cans of worms with sponsors, prize money etc, it is completely different if only a handful of games are played. A season or league table doesn’t lie, any footballing person will say that irrespective of games in hand,no one knows if those games would be won, lost or drawn. Teams that won a game against an opposition can’t automatically expect to win again against them if they had to still play and likewise that same team who maybe lost or drew games throughout the campaign would that mean the opposition get the same number of points earned in those games.

My opinion is that the average points earned per game played so far and multiplied over the total league games expected should give final figures and standings and is the fairest solution to present. There is no hiding place as it is solely based on the actual points earned and defuses the games in hand scenario. If you’ve averaged more points than teams above you then you will leapfrog them. Interestingly across the four West Region Junior Leagues this is clearly evident with the 3rd place team in every league actually winning the league as their average points figure is better despite playing less games, and in 2 of the leagues, the relegation positions change also with the 3rd bottom replacing the team above them to be relegated. That has to be the fairest solution I feel to get clarity over a competitive season and we can try and look forward to the new challenges and changes within our own East Region as we come together as a merged league. That has to then be made attractive and advertised so it allows clubs to try and focus on some positivity and strive to attract players, renegotiate and discuss with sponsors and potential budgets during this difficult time.

Recommended Box Set for the lockdown?

Too many to name but the favourites would be Power or Sons of Anarchy, for a sporting fix any football documentary on Netflix or the various All or Nothing series on Amazon.

We have asked the players for their iconic album at a lot have gone for Oasis, what about you? being that bit older 😂

Considering the players are a lot younger than me and Oasis was my era, it then proves that classic albums never leave us, so Oasis, Definitely Maybe would be up there but my first choice would have to be any Ocean Colour Scene album.

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