Aberdeen manager Craig Brown is vehemently against the Great Britain Olympic football as it could help lead to the loss of Scotland’s football identity.
Despite protests from the Scottish, Welsh and Northern Ireland Football Associations, Team GB is set to go ahead for the 2012 London Games following the announcement of England senior team assistant and U21 boss Stuart Pearce as head coach yesterday.
Brown, and plenty of Scotland football people, are against the idea and the Dons boss has implored any Scottish players approached to play for the team to turn down the offer.
“I am concerned this GB Olympic team could lead to the loss of Scotland’s identity,” he said.
“I would implore any player who is asked to be part of it not to be selfish and to think of future generations of Scottish players who could be affected by their participation.
“They should think of the implications and appreciate what could happen, the possible ruination of the Scotland team.
“There have been repeated assurances from FIFA that a GB team would not affect the separate identities of the four home nations – but I believe president Sepp Blatter will see the forthcoming Olympics as the perfect chance to combine us. The present FIFA regime may agree with having the four home countries having a vote but what will future legislators feel?
“This is the thin end of the wedge in my opinion. The late David Will, who was a vice-president of FIFA, warned me against agreeing to a GB team and I never will.
“Anyway, football is the only sport to be discriminated against on account of age at the Olympics. Every other sport is for the best in the world, not limited by an age barrier.
“I had two opportunities to take our Under-21 team to the Olympics because we finished in the top five sides in Europe to qualify.
“I remember Hungary doing a lap of honour when we reached the last four in the European Championship and they took Scotland’s place when we refused to go.”