Peter Thompson has taken a swipe at Scott Young for “talking down” Irish League football.
The Glentoran boss has claimed that standards are falling in the local game and that the Big Two’s failure to show any consistency this season adds weight to his argument.
However, Linfield striker Thompson, who has won eight Northern Ireland caps and sealed a move to Stockport County following impressive performances in a blue jersey, feels Young was wrong to criticise the domestic game.
In tonight’s Big Two clash at Windsor Park, Thompson and his team-mates hope to put on a display of attacking football Young can remember from his playing days with the Glens.
“I thought it was a very strange comment from Scott Young,” said Thompson. “There no need for someone in his position to say that. There is nothing to be gained from that.
“Why should someone as involved as he is in Irish League football want to put it down in this way? Why does he want to talk down our game?
“We want to bring more fans in through the turnstiles, not turn them away.
“These comments aren’t helpful at all and in fact they could turn more people away from the game.”
Glentoran have to balance their books after a mystery benefactor saved them from going under and Thompson has suggested the east-Belfast side should focus on getting its own house in order rather than criticising the league.
“Going back to the 1990s Glentoran were looking to bring players over from England and they ended up paying out more money for players than they could afford,” added the Northern Ireland international. “By paying over the odds for players they got themselves in trouble and now they have a difficult financial situation to come out of.
“They hurt themselves and now they have to change their ways, but it’s wrong to say that the Irish League is now poorer. Sometimes the Premier League in England bores me whereas the games here are usually high scoring and often entertaining.
“The goal that Matty Burrows scored against Portadown was a reminder of what Irish League players can do.”