Aussie outfit Central Coast Mariners have rubbished claims by Rangers chief executive Charles Green that the two sides are in discussions over a Rangers academy partnership down under.
Green had claimed last week: “I am going to meet the directors of Central Coast Mariners on the back of conversations we have had.
“Australia is producing and has produced good footballers and one of the things we are looking at is putting an academy together with Mariners and its something w have exchanged emails on and something we would like to take forward.”
Greens comments came on the same day that city rivals Celtic signed Central Coast Mariners midfielder Tom Rogic for a reported £400,000. The discussions in relation to the Academy proposal was part of the Ibrox side’s enquiry over taking keeper Matt Ryan to the club on trial, however Ryan rejected the advances of Ally McCoist’s side citing uncertainty over the league situation.
But despite Green’s statement – before he ventures down under to meet Rangers fans in Australia – a Mariners spokesperson stated that they will not entertain any idea of partnering up with the club
Speaking exclusively to Scotzine, a club spokesperson said: “At this stage Central Coast Mariners FC is fully focused on developing its own Academy pathway.
“We are open to the idea of collaboration with various professionals and professional clubs, however, there is as you are aware, uncertainty with the level of football Rangers will play at for the foreseeable future.
“We would not entertain the prospect of acting as a feeder club or Academy partner with a club currently playing in the lower echelons of Scottish football.”
There was some good news for Rangers though, with the A-league club willing to consider any future proposal when Rangers situation changes.
The Mariners spokesperson added: “If/when Rangers situation changes, we would look to an Academy proposal more seriously.”