by Erik Geddes
Ten years ago Partick Thistle were widely regarded as the best run club in Scottish football.
But this week – as the penniless club hits crisis point with a team bottom of the Scottish First Division – Chairman Allan Cowan and Vice Chairman Tom Hughes resigned.
Cowan claimed: ‘The financial situation is in some ways better than it’s ever been, in other ways it’s difficult.
‘I think the relationship between the board and the majority of supporters is a perfectly good one.’
He added: ’I would like to think the board of directors of which I am a member will be remembered for bringing about stability to Partick Thistle.
‘We have geared the club to look to the future with confidence rather than apply any short term fixes for difficulties that have arisen.’
In 1998, Save The Jags campaign saw club fans – including some of the present and past directors – save the club from going out of business.
The club’s early 21st century trademarks were prudent wage structures and financial compliance with strict SPL stadium criteria.
But that was then and this is now.
Successive relegations, expensive managerial pay-offs and falling crowds have reduced the present day club to the bare bones.
Over the past few months official fans group The Jags Trust have been applying pressure on the other board members to shake-up the board room.
Jags Trust Chair David Stewart said: ‘The departure of these two directors is a clear signal that long overdue change is under way at Firhill.
‘It’s vital that any overhaul of the operation of the business includes the supporters and this, in itself, throws up some challenges.
‘I’m sure that supporters will contribute fully, both in terms of ideas and financial help, if and when required.
‘In the meantime, the football team needs our support and I’d call on all fans to turn out for our game against Dunfermline on Saturday.’
Jim Alexander now comes into the picture as a full board member and it is understood that the Trust will be asked to play a greater role.
The Jags Trust will be hosting a public meeting, provisionally planned at Firhill on the evening of Thursday 30 September.