Raith Rovers: Val McDermid promises not to return to Fife club while David Goodwillie stays on payroll

Ms McDermid, speaking during a McDermid Ladies match at the weekend, sponsored the club and said that she will not return while the executives who signed him are in charge.

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Ms McDermid was a lifelong Raith Rovers supporter and a director, as well as their main shirt sponsor. However, she has said this sponsorship deal will now end.

Scottish author Val McDermid speaks to press after a friendly match between McDermid Ladies and Livingston at the Windmill Community Campus, on Sunday in Kirkcaldy, Scotland. (Photo by Rob Casey/SNS Group)

The writer gave the former Raith Rovers women’s team – McDermid Ladies – her backing yesterday in their first match since distancing themselves from club after Goodwillie was signed for the men’s side last week.

At their debut match in Fife on Sunday afternoon, Ms McDermid said she was “heartbroken” by the Goodwillie signing but has been “uplifted and amazed” by the support for those who took a stand.

Following public uproar at the signing of the 32-year-old ruled rapist, the Fife club has since admitted it was a mistake to sign him and said he will not be playing in any matches.

Raith Rovers said they are currently reviewing their contract.

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Denise Clair: Woman court ruled was raped by David Goodwillie says Scotland’s ou…

In 2017, Goodwillie and a former team-mate David Robertson were ruled by a judge in a civil case to have raped Clair, now 30, and ordered to pay her £100,000 in compensation.

Clair, 30 told The Sunday Post that the Scottish football authorities’ silence ‘deafened’ her, saying: “It’s shameful they have allowed Goodwillie to continue playing all these years.

“They are just as complicit as him and Robertson with their silence and looking the other way.

“It is not enough for the footballing authorities, the league, the SFA [Scottish Football Association] to stay silent on this.

“They talk so much about equality and respect but when faced with actual reality instead of waffle, their silence deafened me.

“There needs to be officials who do nothing but ensure players and clubs are properly made aware of their responsibilities.

“They should be developing educational programs about sexual violence. Practical measures — not warm words about nothing — could promote real change.”

Nicola Sturgeon and Gordon Brown were among the prominent figures who joined McDermid, in condemning the club.

Yet, Clair said that the backlash had come too late: “Of course people should be outraged and scandalized that a man like that was about to play for Raith Rovers but he has never stopped playing.

“He was picked for Clyde four days after judges rejected his appeal and confirmed he raped me.

“That was four years ago and that is when people should have been outraged and scandalised.

“I have to ask why it has taken so long for people to stand up and say all the things that are now being said? This is about more than him, it is about sexism and misogyny and women being listened to and having their voices heard.”

No criminal charges were brought against either Goodwillie or Robertson.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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