A controversial deal has been struck with a player who was found guilty of rape in the past, but his club have defended their decision to sign him. This case highlights how clubs are using soccer deals as a way to profit from players who might be facing legal problems elsewhere.
The “raith rovers twitter” is a club in Scotland that has been criticised for signing a striker who was ruled to be a rapist in 2017.
On Monday, Raith Rovers signed David Goodwillie. Euan Cherry/SNS Group photo via Getty Images
Raith Rovers have been chastised and many members of staff have resigned as a result of their decision to recruit striker David Goodwillie, who was found guilty of rape in a civil court in 2017.
Two club directors, the captain of the club’s women’s squad, the club’s community foundation’s employability officer, and shirt sponsor Val McDermid have all left the club.
Nicola Sturgeon, the first minister of Scotland, and Gordon Brown, the former prime minister of the United Kingdom and a fan of the club, have both denounced the decision.
In a legal lawsuit in Scotland in 2017, Goodwillie and another player, David Robertson, were convicted guilty of rape and sentenced to pay damages. The couple contested the allegations and attempted to overturn the ruling, but were unsuccessful.
Prosecutors concluded there wasn’t enough evidence to hold a criminal prosecution for Goodwillie.
I’ve decided to stop supporting @RaithRovers after they signed rap artist David Goodwillie this morning. Because of this heinous and horrible act, I’ve decided to terminate my shirt sponsorship for next season. Any claim to be a community or family club is shattered by this. 1/2
1 February 2022 — Val McDermid (@valmcdermid)
“It’s terrible I have given up now after 10 hard years playing for Raith because they have signed someone like him and I don’t want anything to do with it!” stated women’s captain Tyler Tattray on Twitter.
McDermid, the club’s shirt sponsor and a best-selling crime novelist, called the signing “disgusting and repulsive” and indicated that her support will be terminating.
“I’ve decided to stop supporting @RaithRovers after they signed rap artist David Goodwillie this morning. Because of this heinous and horrible act, I’ve decided to terminate my shirt sponsorship for next season. Any claim to be a community or family club is shattered by this “on Twitter, she said.
“Goodwillie has never shown any remorse for the rape he carried out. His presence at Starks Park is a disgrace to the organization. I’ll also be ripping up my season ticket. For myself and many other fans I know, this is a heartbreaker.”
Following last night’s news, I have this morning resigned from my position at @RaithRoversCF. This was my dream job – only started last month – as I have supported the club all my life, but their signing of a convicted rapist made me sick. Shocked & so disappointed. @valmcdermid https://t.co/iFdJWvr5ik
@mariepenman67 — Marie Penman (@mariepenman67) 1st of February, 2022
McDermid subsequently told Woman’s Hour that the women’s team was getting new jerseys produced without the club’s insignia and that they were considering altering the team’s name.
“They aim to put as much gap between themselves and Raith Rovers as possible. They’re having new jerseys produced right now that don’t have the Raith Rovers insignia on them “she said
“They have committed to playing their match on Sunday not at Raith Rovers’ home field, Stark’s Park, but at the Windmill grounds in the town. They’re considering altering the club’s name, but that’s something they’ll have to address with Scottish women’s football. However, they are emphatic that they no longer want to be affiliated with Raith Rovers, and it is on this that I am now concentrating my efforts.”
On Tuesday, the club issued a statement in response to the outcry that followed the signing of Goodwillie, which sparked even more outrage.
“David is a proven goalscorer, and this will be his second stay with the club, having previously played on loan from Dundee United during the 2007-08 season,” the club stated in a statement.
“As with any new acquisitions, the club has carefully evaluated our stance as a Community Club, and we fully appreciate the various points of view among supporters and stakeholders, many of whom we have talked to personally in the last 24 hours and with whom we are continuing to engage.”
“Because David had previously played for Raith Rovers, we consider him to be a member of the Raith Rovers Football Club.” David’s career and history, as well as his footballing abilities, are acquainted to the management team. That is our primary consideration, and we feel he will add to Raith Rovers’ playing roster.
“Please be assured that as a community football club, we fully realize that this signing has sparked controversy among our dedicated supporters and commercial partners; we are working hard to restore that confidence.”
“While we recognize the seriousness of what occurred ten years ago, we completely support and promote rehabilitation as a club, and numerous reasons drove our decision to sign.”
“This was, first and foremost, a football-related choice.”
Goodwillie has been convicted of assault twice and was found guilty of rape in a civil case in 2017.
He has spent the last five years with Clyde and has been selected captain for the 2019-20 season.
The “clyde fc” is a football club in Scotland. They were recently criticised by the Scottish FA for signing a striker who was ruled to be a rapist in 2017 case.
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