Buckie Thistle 'stunned and devastated' by SFA pyramid playoff rejection stance

Buckie Thistle have blasted the SFA's decision to boot them out of the pyramid playoff this season - admitting they are "stunned and devastated" over the ruling.

The governing body this evening confirmed that Thistle would not be granted permission to compete in the playoff which sees East Kilbride granted a bye into the final for promotion to the SPFL. It was claimed Buckie did not obtain the Bronze-level licence deemed necessary for participation but the club have since clapped back at those suggestions and revealed they have been in constant contact with the SFA.

The statement read: “At 5pm today, Buckie Thistle FC received an email from the SPFL, stating that because the club do not comply with the SFA Bronze Licence criteria, and did not apply for a waiver or period of grace in respect of this non-compliance by the deadline of 31st March 2024, there will be no Play-Off Tie between Buckie Thistle FC and East Kilbride FC, and East Kilbride will automatically go forward to the Pyramid Play-Off Tie with Club 42.

"However, we can confirm that the club has been in regular contact with the SFA in regard to the Bronze Licence criteria items, and we were in fact asked by the SPFL to ask for a period of grace for four of these items on Tuesday 23rd April, which we duly did.

"Our Club President Garry Farquhar attended a meeting with the SFA on Wednesday 24th April, and we were granted Derogations for three items - Floodlights, Safety Officer and Diversity & Inclusion. One item - Medical – has been deferred until the 15th of May, but the club has committed to resolving the matter by May 10th.

"It goes without saying that everyone at the club is stunned and devastated by the timing of this decision. It’s particularly harsh on the players and management, who put so much hard work into winning the Highland League title, that they don’t get the opportunity to go for promotion.”