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William Powrie hopes Scottish Cup heroics put Brora Rangers on map in pursuit of SPFL elevation

Brora Rangers chairman William Powrie.
Brora Rangers chairman William Powrie.

Brora Rangers chairman William Powrie hopes those questioning the merits of the pyramid system will take notice of the Cattachs following their stunning Scottish Cup triumph over Hearts.

Steven Mackay’s side sent shockwaves through Scottish football by producing one of the biggest upsets in the competition’s history in Tuesday’s 2-1 triumph over the Jambos.

The Edinburgh outfit are 16 points clear at the top of the Championship, and have been the losing Scottish Cup finalists in each of the last two seasons.

Brora celebrate Martin Maclean’s winner

Despite winning the Highland League title last season, Brora were denied a tilt at the play-offs after SPFL clubs voted through a proposal to end the season prematurely due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Although the remainder of the Highland League season is in doubt, Brora could stand to be elevated this summer should plans to create an expanded 16-team League Two featuring Rangers and Celtic colt teams be passed.

Powrie feels Brora’s moment of glory has done their domestic league proud and he feels it fuels the argument for his club to be part of the league setup.

Powrie said: “Our CV against league clubs latterly has been very impressive. That can be said for many of the Highland League clubs that have met SPFL clubs in various cup competitions.

“The Highland League is a very good league, and it’s only natural we want to develop the club and progress through the Scottish pyramid system.

“How can people not take notice? It puts Brora right in the shop window, right at the time we want to be.

“Let’s just hope the authorities and powers that be that make these decisions allow the pyramid to progress this season.

“Alternatively, hopefully they will take us down the route of our preferred option to adopt the proposals laid out by Rangers and Celtic.

“I think that would be a great fillip for Scottish football, particularly at the lower levels. It could bring many benefits to many clubs.”

Brora’s reward is a home tie against League Two side Stranraer next Saturday, and despite the absence of crowds Powrie is hopeful a Scottish Cup run could provide a timely financial boost for the club.

Brora Rangers manager Steven Mackay

Powrie added:  “For playing in the next round, we get £20,000. That goes up quite considerably in the following round. If we get over the next hurdle it’s very much more lucrative.

“Clearly supporters won’t be allowed back in, so the revenue raising opportunities are going to be limited to pay-per-view.

“We had about 2,500 pay-per-view customers against Hearts. It’s always difficult to measure how successful that is or not, but clearly there was a great support from the Hearts contingent to buy the passes.

“If we are fortunate enough to beat Stranraer, we progress into the next round and go into the next tier of SFA payment.”

Powrie is thrilled with the publicity being generated for the Sutherland village, which has a population of just under 2,000.

He added: “It’s great for Brora Rangers, the Highland League and football in the north of Scotland.

“It’s great economically for Sutherland and the village as well.

“While we all know where Brora is, many people south of Perth don’t. We are blazing a trail economically for the area as well as on the park.”

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