Monday, 22 Jul 2024

Arbroath FC: The Part-Time Football Club on the Verge of Scotland’s Top Tier

In the Scottish Championship, there’s a remarkable story unfolding. Arbroath FC, the only part-time club in Scotland’s top two divisions, is defying expectations and making a serious push for promotion. Currently sitting in 2nd place, just 4 points off the top spot, Arbroath is on the verge of securing a promotion play-off spot. But what sets this small town club apart from its full-time rivals? Let’s delve into the factors that have contributed to Arbroath’s success.

How Does a Part-Time Set-Up Work?

Before we explore Arbroath’s rise, it’s important to understand how a part-time football club operates. Unlike their full-time counterparts, part-time players have other jobs outside of football. They train and prepare for matches only a few evenings a week, limiting their time to focus on fitness and tactics. While this can be a disadvantage, Arbroath has found a way to make their part-time status work to their advantage.

The Impact of Manager Dick Campbell

A key factor in Arbroath’s success is their veteran manager, Dick Campbell. With decades of coaching experience, Campbell has a knack for assembling a competitive team at this level. He has a keen eye for talent, bringing in high-potential players and impactful loan signings. Campbell’s charismatic personality and coaching abilities have propelled Arbroath from the bottom of League Two to the cusp of Scotland’s elite.

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Making Part-Time an Attractive Proposition

Arbroath’s part-time status has also allowed them to attract talented players who prioritize stability alongside their football careers. The club offers high-level football without the full-time commitments, making it an appealing option for individuals who cannot or choose not to pursue football as their sole profession. The contributions of players like top scorer Michael McKenna and goalkeeper Derek Gaston have been invaluable to Arbroath’s success.

The Spirit and Home Advantage

A strong team spirit and remarkable home form have been driving factors in Arbroath’s journey. With only one home defeat this season, Arbroath has made their ground, Gayfield Park, a fortress. Situated right by the sea, the stadium’s unique location presents challenging conditions for visiting teams. Campbell’s side has used these conditions to their advantage, creating a formidable home advantage.

The Future for Arbroath

As the season draws to a close, Arbroath finds themselves in a promising position. The question arises: will they maintain their part-time status if they secure promotion? Opinions within the club differ, with some believing they can compete in the top flight while remaining part-time and others open to considering a full-time model. There are risks and rewards associated with both options, and Arbroath will need to carefully weigh their choices. For now, their focus remains on the task at hand.


Q: How does a part-time football club operate?
A: Part-time clubs, like Arbroath, have players who have other jobs outside of football. They train and prepare for matches a few evenings a week, which can limit their fitness levels and tactical preparation.

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Q: Who is the manager of Arbroath FC?
A: Arbroath’s manager is Dick Campbell, a seasoned coach known for his charisma and success at lower league clubs. Campbell’s coaching abilities have played a significant role in Arbroath’s rise.

Q: What makes Arbroath’s home form so impressive?
A: Arbroath has only suffered one home defeat this season, making Gayfield Park a formidable fortress. Situated right by the sea, the stadium’s challenging conditions give Arbroath an edge over visiting teams.


Arbroath FC, the only part-time club in Scotland’s top two divisions, is making waves in the Scottish Championship. Led by manager Dick Campbell, Arbroath has defied expectations and is vying for promotion to the top tier of Scottish football. Their success can be attributed to Campbell’s coaching abilities, the ability to attract talented part-time players, and their strong home form. As the season reaches its climax, Arbroath faces the question of whether to maintain their part-time status or consider a full-time model. The future holds both risks and rewards for this remarkable club.

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