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McNaughton: Aberdeen are paying the price of success


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http://www.eveningexpress.co.uk/Article.aspx/661665?UserKey=0

More stars will head south, says McNaughton

 

By Andrew Moir

 

Published: 25/06/2008

 

KEVIN McNaughton is undoubtedly one of Pittodrie’s greatest success stories in recent years.

 

The Scotland defender left the Dons for Cardiff City on a free transfer in the summer of 2006.

 

And the Dundonian has never looked back, featuring in a FA Cup final and revitalising his international career.

 

The 25-year-old today paid tribute to his first senior club – but warned the Reds are fast becoming a feeder club for bigger teams down south.

 

A host of stars have recently quit Aberdeen for England, and Alan Maybury, one of McNaughton’s successors at right back, could be the latest to following the growing trend.

 

“I’ll never forget my time at Aberdeen and, I owe the club a great deal of thanks for giving me my chance,†said McNaughton.

 

“More recently Jimmy Calderwood has been able to get the best out of some of the guys who were maybe struggling before he took over.

 

“Unfortunately he’s paying for that now because a few boys have moved on to bigger clubs.

 

“Russell Anderson, Chris Clark and Michael Hart have all moved on and now Barry Nicholson is also on his way south.

 

“Alan Maybury could also move to England although he has yet to make a decision.

 

“It’s difficult for Aberdeen to keep certain players because even just from a wages point of view they can’t compete with English clubs.â€

 

McNaughton reckons facing the same opposition week-in-week-out makes Scotland’s top league a little mundane.

 

There’s certainly more fizz in the Coca-Cola Championship according to the full-back.

 

In fact variety is the spice of life for McNaughton, who has really relished playing for the Bluebirds.

 

He added: “When you’ve played for six or seven years in the SPL against the same opposition, you want to try something new.

 

“There were seasons when Aberdeen seemed to be facing Livingston every other week, and that did make things a little predictable at times. That’s perhaps why I’ve enjoyed England even more.

 

“Aberdeen should take real pride in the fact other clubs continually look at their best players.

 

“It’s a good selling point for the club especially when you look at the players who have progressed to English clubs.

 

“I thoroughly enjoyed my time there and have some great friends who are still there.

 

“The club has shown they have made progress by making it into Europe which has resulted in other teams looking at their players.

 

“It’s almost like a vicious circle, but I’m sure Jimmy Calderwood will have Aberdeen well prepared for the new season.â€

 

Despite an appearance at Wembley against Portsmouth and a relatively successful league season, McNaughton still isn’t happy – and he won’t be satisfied until he’s enjoyed silverware success.

 

“Last season was relatively good for Cardiff, although I’m disappointed we didn’t win the FA Cup.

 

“But we all walked off the Wembley pitch with our heads held high although I couldn’t help but feel we had missed a chance.

 

“However, the reality is I haven’t achieved anything yet since leaving Aberdeen.

 

“We want to push on to reach the Premier League with Cardiff and things are moving in the right direction.

 

“In my first season we looked like we were going to have a real chance of winning promotion.

 

“That was before we faded a bit in the final stages, but it’s hard because we don’t have a huge squad.â€

 

McNaughton, who has been linked with Premier League clubs, hasn’t even thought about quitting the Welsh wonders for life at a higher level.

 

“I couldn’t even contemplate leaving Cardiff right now because I have settled so well there.

 

“We’ve got a great squad and all the lads mingle.

 

“When things are good off the pitch, it bodes well for players to perform to their peak on it.â€

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Is Andrew Moir right though, have Clark and Hart moved on to "bigger clubs down south"?!?

 

Bigger wages yes, bigger crowds maybe (haven't checked) - but bigger clubs?

 

Not sure I'd call Cardiff bigger either.

 

I'd say our history and european pedigree would make us the "bigger" club.

 

But it's all a load of bollocks anyway - money talks so players will leave regardless of whether a club is bigger or not.

 

We're a small fish in a small pond, I'd say most Championship clubs are bigger than us now, regardless of history.

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Is Andrew Moir right though, have Clark and Hart moved on to "bigger clubs down south"?!?

 

Bigger wages yes, bigger crowds maybe (haven't checked) - but bigger clubs?

 

Not sure I'd call Cardiff bigger either.

 

I'd say our history and european pedigree would make us the "bigger" club.

 

But it's all a load of bollocks anyway - money talks so players will leave regardless of whether a club is bigger or not.

 

Thinking the same thing while reading the article bigger NO, wealthier YES. Despite the low standing of Scottish football in England at this time, I think if you were to ask supporters of PNE or Plymouth if they thought their clubs were bigger than Aberdeen a lot would say no (or at least those that have been supporting those clubs for longer than ten years or so). 

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We're a small fish in a small pond, I'd say most Championship clubs are bigger than us now, regardless of history.

 

I Would agree

 

Most have youth academy's

Most have a lot of money and in the bank

And i would say 90% would have better stadiums then the whole of the SPL apart from Rangers.

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Guest swaddon
McNaughton reckons facing the same opposition week-in-week-out makes Scotland’s top league a little mundane.

 

There’s certainly more fizz in the Coca-Cola Championship according to the full-back.

 

In fact variety is the spice of life for McNaughton, who has really relished playing for the Bluebirds.

 

He added: “When you’ve played for six or seven years in the SPL against the same opposition, you want to try something new.

 

“There were seasons when Aberdeen seemed to be facing Livingston every other week, and that did make things a little predictable at times. That’s perhaps why I’ve enjoyed England even more.

 

For me, this is the reason players won't stick around in the SPL, it's too damn boring playing clubs up to seven times a season (including League Cup ties and Scottish Cup games that go to a replay).

 

But that's an argument for another topic.

 

As for Championship clubs being bigger than the Dons, it depends how you measure the size of a club, but I'd say that about 50% of them are bigger than the Dons.

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No - you've just agreed that they have more money  ???

 

I'm also surprised you didn't go on a rant at Andrew Moir for saying Aberdeen had had success  ::)

 

How do you define a 'big' club then? By support? Ours is shocking. By trophys? We've won nothing of note for years. By big name signings? We've not had a big name since Charlie Nicholas signed for us.

 

We're a tiny wee club in a tiny wee league with a tiny wee support. Almost any club in the championship is at least on a par with us, lets not get deluded and kid ourselves on that a couple of years success in Europe a quarter of a century ago has any bearing on who we are now.

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I'd disagree - although attendances are often low, our support (fan base) is big.

 

a tiny wee league that has had two uefa cup finalists in the past few years.  A tiny wee league that had a team progress from the uefa group stages this year.  A tiny wee league with a team making the last 16 of the champions league... yep tiny wee league.

 

but like i said earlier - doesn't matter whether the other club is bigger, money talks

 

In what way is our fan base big? At our best we can draw maybe 18 thou supporters, and most of them only turn up two or three times a season. The Uefa cup finalists have £££ behind them (and in Rangers case a horrendous style of anti-football that let them punch above their weight), and as for our Uefa cup run, it was jammy as fuck with only one good win and we really didnt deserve to make the last 32, and when you consider how poor the Uefa cup is these days then that tells you all you need to know.

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Third column in is the average attendance.

 

Aberdeen's last season was 11994

 

incidently the top 5 in league two were miles ahead of ours too

 

Hearts who have the highest average outside OF had 15008 which is only higher then the bottom 8 of the championship

 

1 Sheffield United (9) 23 589508 31760 25631 32609  78.6%

2 Norwich City (17) 23 564767 25497 24555 26034  94.3%

3 Leicester City (22) 23 540700 31892 23509 32500  72.3%

4 Wolverhampton Wndrs (7) 23 540471 27883 23499 28525  82.3%

5 Charlton Athletic (11) 23 532666 26337 23159 27113  85.4%

6 Ipswich Town (8) 23 504497 29656 21935 30300  72.3%

7 West Bromwich Albion (1) 23 503164 27493 21877 28003  78.1%

8 Sheffield Wednesday (16) 23 492438 36208 21410 39814  53.7%

9 Southampton (20) 23 488840 31957 21254 32689  65.0%

10 Coventry City (21) 23 439832 27992 19123 32500  58.8%

11 Hull City (3) 23 414846 24350 18037 25404  71.0%

12 Watford (6) 23 388154 18698 16876 19920  84.7%

13 Stoke City (2) 23 386934 26609 16823 28384  59.2%

14 Bristol City (4) 23 374346 19332 16276 21479  75.7%

15 Crystal Palace (5) 23 368706 23950 16031 26309  60.9%

16 Cardiff City (12) 23 320596 18840 13939 20376  68.4%

17 Queens Park Rangers (14) 23 309515 18309 13457 19148  70.2%

18 Preston North End (15) 23 302858 22330 13168 19525  67.4%

19 Plymouth Argyle (10) 23 299010 17511 13000 19500  66.6%

20 Burnley (13) 23 284391 16843 12365 22546  54.8%

21 Barnsley (18) 23 263398 18257 11452 23186  49.3%

22 Blackpool (19) 23 203799 9640 8861 9491  93.3%

23 Scunthorpe United (23) 23 147989 8801 6434 9183  70.0%

24 Colchester United (24) 23 126696 6300 5509 6200  88.8%

 

 

 

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Third column in is the average attendance.

 

Aberdeen's last season

 

incidently the top 5 in league two were miles ahead of ours too

 

Hearts who have the highest average outside OF had 15008 which is only higher then the bottom 6 of the championship

 

 

So what? England is considerably bigger than Scotland, the attendances will always reflect that. If that's the only thing that determines "how big" a club is then we're always going to lose out to the English.

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