After Alloa Athletic clash Falkirk boss Peter Houston wants action to stop clubs changing pitch dimensions during season



Peter Houston has urged Scottish football’s rule-makers to prevent clubs from changing the size of their pitches during the season after opponents Alloa Athletic narrowed their playing surface by around 10 yards at the Indodrill Stadium.

The Wasps have brought the touchlines in by approximately five yards on each side as they seek any advantage possible in their bid to haul themselves away from the bottom of the Championship.

(Pic: BBC Scotland)
The green line on the left is the old touchline (Pic: BBC Scotland)

The tactic failed to work at the weekend when Houston’s Falkirk won 1-0 to keep themselves firmly in the title race in second spot in the table behind Rangers.

But Houston, who has confessed he altered his team’s passing tactics because of the part-timers’ plastic pitch, insists such a change should not be possible once the campaign is up and running.

He said: “I can understand why Alloa have narrowed the pitch because they have to have their best opportunity to stay in the league.

Cup ties

“Many, many managers, coaches and players have complained about the pitch because it’s been down for so long but, when you narrow it like that, they are wanting ‘cup ties’ to try and stay in this league.

“I am not criticising that at all. They are perfectly within their legalities to do it because after half a season you are allowed to do it.

“But it’s something the authorities should look at.

“It’s not as if it’s a sour grapes thing because we played there and won. It’s the fact that, if you start a season with a size of pitch, it should be there for the whole season.

“Half-way through a season you should not be allowed to narrow it as much as Alloa have. It looks ridiculous as well, to be honest.

“What is going to happen with any team coming here, the ball is going to go from back to front with very little football being played.”