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West of Scotland Super League Premier Division Season Review

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As always this is a personal view but where to start? The bookmakers priced the sides up before the season started so let’s start there,

11/4 Favourites Irvine Meadow XI: Super League Result Winners
The bookies got it bang on as last Saturday Irvine Meadow XI gained the points required against Largs Thistle following a two nil victory to clinch their third Super League crown in four years, a quite remarkable achievement given that the days of them having a “sugar daddy” are long gone and now the “Medda” are for the most part
self financed apart from their main sponsors. Self investment on their part in building a very popular sports bar inside their ground has given them a regular income and the bonus of another Scottish senior cup and the chance of another run in the cup makes them early favourites to claim the title again next season.

7/2 Auchinleck Talbot: Super League Result Third
Personally I think that Talbot have the best starting eleven in junior football by a distance, the problem they have is the fact they have quality as opposed to quantity which over the season can see them fall out of the race for the league due to the fact they seem to be cup specialists. Going for another Scottish Cup win this season against Shott’s Bonn Accord, Talbot have once against shown they are without question the most successful Scottish Junior Cup team of all time, but I am sure their faithful support would love to have seen them mount a better charge for the title.

4/1 Pollok: Super League Result Tenth (play off versus 3rd top of Super first)
Pollok just haven’t clicked either on or off the field this season. Internal issues and on field issues plus the loss of a manager and key players have seen them struggle from week to week which although Arthurlie’s biggest rival, has not been pleasant to see over the year. Pollok has some great individual players but have no team unit as such while from day one their defence has been haemorrhaging goals no matter who is selected in the back line which that said seems to change on a week to week basis as they try to find the right blend. Pollok now face the daunting task of a two-legged play off against the third placed team in the Super First Division. Given that Pollok are on a low at the moment while the their opponents will be on a high its a game they wont relish but would the top league be the same without the Glasgow side? I think not.

5/1 Arthurlie: Super League Result Seventh
A season that promised so much came down to the last few games under “new” management to secure their top flight status. Basically Arthurlie’s season never got off the ground, a new batch of players arrived and due to holiday commitments and a horrid opening group on fixtures the league title hopes were gone early doors, signs of promise were false ones and eventually the departure of Sandy MacLean and the return of Mark Cameron, Jim McQuade, and Gavin Duncan were the stabilisers that kept the Barrhead side secure in the top flight.

8/1 Beith Juniors: Super League Result Fifth
In what was supposed to be a transition season Beith were a solid unit over the entire campaign never truly challenging and never in danger with many positives to take from the year and a solid base to build on and become stronger next season

14/1 Clydebank: Super League Result Fourth
The “Cup side” for many a year the Bankies finally lost out in the early rounds last season but again lost out in the title race as they were promoted as runners-up. For any side coming up to the Super Premier League it takes time to settle but settle they did, a run of around ten straight games undefeated gave the Bankies a fourth spot in their first year in the top flight and given that they have improved season on season they might well prove to be more than dark horses next year.

20/1 Kilbirnie Ladeside: Super League Result Twelve
Another pre season where their top players were signed by so-called bigger clubs proved one season too many as The Lade finally dropped down a division. Tommy Bryce and Digger Fulton had picked up “unknown” players for years and developed them into one of the most attacking and entertaining teams seen in junior football for many a year but lack of funds and the lure of senior football was the death toll for Kilbirnie as they found unable to replace their players, lets hope they can stabilise and get back up next year.

25/1 Largs Thistle: Super League Result Eleventh
Largs managed to get to the semi-final of the Scottish Cup this year but that was to be the highlight of their season as they ended a disappointing league campaign but finishing in the second automatic relegation berth.

25/1 Kirkintilloch Rob Roy Thistle: Super League Result Eighth
Rob Roy started the season brightly after spending heavily in the summer but it was to be a false dawn for the Kirkintilloch side as they seemed to run out of steam as the season progressed

33/1 Petershill Thistle: Super League Result Second
A quite remarkable turnaround from the Glasgow side who last year only avoided relegation after a two-legged play-off victory over Glenafton. From the start of the season the Peasies have been near the top and while many thought they would fall away it never happened as they were top of the pile right up until the end when Irvine piped them to the title.

40/1 Cumnock Thistle: Super League Result Ninth
A stop start sort of season from the Ayrshire side who skirted around the relegation zone for much of the season before securing their top flight status but two points.

50/1 Ashfield Thistle: Super League Result Sixth
The other promoted side, Ashfield started off the season on fire and were near the top of the pile for the first few months until they started to fall way. A creditable sixth place finish plus a run that saw them reach the final of the West of Scotland Cup, they went down two to nil to Irvine Meadow, will be seen as a successful first season in the top division.

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