I FEEL compelled to write in reply to Martin Hannan (Alex McLeish can restore our nation’s faith in the Scotland team, September 13). As an online subscriber to The National, I’ve read several of his articles. Some make good points, some are way “off base”. This is one of the latter.

You want to see progress in Scottish football at club and national level, and improve the “quality on the product”? First, get rid of the self-serving officials at the SFA. Couldn’t run the proverbial in a brewery.

Next, referees. Don’t allow them to officiate at ANY senior Scottish football match. Why? As a 70-year-old, I have watched Scottish referees go from the envy of the world for fairness to downright incompetence. Scottish referees think the game is all about them. Bring in the video assistant referee as soon as possible.

I watch Scottish football and all I see is one set of players trying to kick and end the career of a fellow opposition professional, with referees standing by allowing it to happen (no matter what the fourth official on the sidelines advises).

“Compliance Officer?” Just another high-paid job for the boys at the SFA. Never heard one of them make a real, serious decision that had an impact on the quality of the game in Scotland.

Don’t believe me? Watch a re-run of ANY Scottish Premier League match.

The solution? Have English referees officiate at all Premier League and Championship matches and send the Scottish referees to officiate at English matches. First, English referees don’t have an agenda against any particular club they don’t like, and that is rife in Scottish football. Second, they allow the game to flow but are not afraid to send a player off in the first minute for a dangerous tackle. Never seen that happen in Scottish football, ever.

As for the SFA, time to let the professional players who know what the game is all about and have put their hard-earned cash into a club run the game.

For the record, I don’t sit in a darkened room in my vest and underpants, glued to a computer screen, firing off emails to everybody and anybody. I offer a serious comment for consideration. I think there is some merit in my comments, perhaps others will also see constructive comment too.

Jim Todd

ALAN Adair’s long letter (Letters, September 10), makes it abundantly clear that Scottish industry and infrastructure has suffered, and will continue to suffer, under disinterested and self-absorbed Westminster governments that will always support English interests even although their actions may be detrimental to Scotland. Westminster has become an acquisitive, some would say abusive, institution that under Tory and Labour governments has already clandestinely removed hundreds of billions of pounds worth of Scotland’s oil and gas assets.

As Scotland now contemplates recovering its independence it becomes obvious that it must look to secure all of its valuable assets. Unfortunately some have already fallen to what in future may be considered as foreign interests and those must be recovered. Among them are our principle ports on the rivers Clyde and Forth. Peel Ports, an English consortium central to Alan’s letter, acquired the assets of Clydeport. These run like a ribbon from the centre of Glasgow down the river as far as Arran and include the ports of Glasgow, Greenock, Hunterston and Ardrossan. They are also the Harbour Authority of the river Clyde, a territory covering an area of 450 square miles. It’s a similar situation on the east coast, where the Forth ports are owned by Tilbury docks. These include Burntisland, Grangemouth, Kirkcaldy, Leith, Methil and Rosyth. As soon as independence has been achieved, the Scottish Government will have no option but to nationalise these assets, control of which should never have left Scotland.

Bruce Moglia
Bridge of Weir

I LISTENED to the hype on most news channels on Wednesday evening about the opening of the V&A in Dundee. One lady on one channel, speaking from a street in Dundee, said she “recognised the problems of poverty and unemployment in Dundee” as well as the fact the city has a big drugs problem. However, she continued, this new museum is proof that culture is available to all regardless.

Well what she forgot to mention is that, yes, entry to the building is free, but there is a payment of between £6 and £12 to view the exhibits. So, in fact, aye, culture is available to all as long as youv’e got a few spare quid in yir pooch!

Would it not be a good idea to allow all Dundee city residents free entry to the museum while “outsiders” like me pay for entry?

Ian Heggie

THE Catalans show us how to do it! I would like to see demonstrations the size of theirs – this would then surely help to convince the No voters to join the independence movement.

R Neeson