In a move that many anticipated after a dreadful beginning to the World Cup qualifying campaign, the Scottish Football Association announced Monday evening that they were letting go of Craig Levein as the manager of the Scotland Men’s A international football squad.
Levein was a day away from announcing his squad for a friendly against Luxembourg, but that won’t happen now as a seven man Scottish FA panel met over the weekend and announced the results of their gathering.
Out of the 12 competitive matches Scotland have participated in with Levein at the helm, they have only come away with a victory in three of those matches. Despite the results, Levein did have the support of his players. But there was nothing they could do when the FA handed down their ruling.
Their statement read in part, “The Scottish FA tonight announces that Craig Levein has been relieved of his duties as Scotland National Coach. The Board of the Scottish FA has taken the decision primarily due to the disappointing results in the FIFA World Cup Brazil 2014 Qualifiers, which have culminated in Scotland being bottom of the group after four matches.”
Chief executive of the Scottish FA Stewart Regan spoke on the difficult but necessary decision to let Levein go. “We are taking this decision with real sadness. Craig has worked hard to bring success, and has been thoroughly professional in his approach to the job.”
It didn’t change the fact that reality of being a football manager is harsh. “However, he would be the first to agree that football is a results-driven business,” Regan said.
Billy Stark, the man in charge of Scotland’s U-21 squad will be promoted to head of the Men’s A squad on an interim basis while the FA search for a new full-time manager. Stark will be in charge of selecting the squad that will play Luxembourg in the friendly.