David Martindale: Livingston desperately need ‘clear ownership structure’

The manager wants off the field uncertainty cleared up as soon as possible.

David Martindale: Livingston desperately need ‘clear ownership structure’ SNS Group

David Martindale admitted Championship-bound Livingston desperately need an end to the ongoing ownership wrangle that he feels is holding the club back.

A range of off-field disputes have plagued the club in recent years and there is a case being contested between John McIlvogue’s Baycup, who purchased what they believe to be a controlling interest in the club last year, and some previous directors, who claim they are the rightful owners.

“For Livingston Football Club to move forward it needs clear ownership structure,” said manager Martindale.

“At this moment in time there is a clear ownership structure with Baycup but again that’s getting contested in court. Whatever way that court case goes, I think Livingston Football Club – forget all the individual shareholders, directors, staff, whatever you want – it needs a clear ownership model going forward.”

Martindale is due to talk with the current Livi board at the end of the season to discuss his future but he has made it clear recently that he would like the chance to stay and try to lead the club back to the Premiership.

However, he conceded the ownership issue could be the most significant factor affecting his future. Asked if he could leave if the court decision goes against Baycup over the summer, he said: “Probably not ‘could’ – probably ‘would’.

“I wouldn’t want to leave though. For me I’ve been very, very loyal to Livingston but they have been very, very loyal to me.”

Livingston will bring the curtain down on six consecutive years in the Premiership on Sunday when they host Hibernian in their last top-flight match. Martindale feels relegation gives Livi a chance to “clear the decks” and bounce back stronger.

“It’s hard to look at the positivity of the journey because I’m living in the moment and I’m still very raw from Wednesday’s result (a 5-1 defeat at Aberdeen),” said Martindale. “The club needs a massive reset on and off the park, if I’m really honest.

“Off-field issues are going to take care of themselves and I think that will then put this club on a better footing going forward.

“Relegation is a massive negativity, but it doesn’t need to be the end of the journey. We’re a small community club and it’s important that everybody sticks together and we try and take the club back to the Premiership, which won’t be an easy task.”

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