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Bust-up over walkout by benched Billy; AIRDRIE 1 CLYDEBANK 0.

A BITTER row flared last night after it was revealed Bankies' Billy Macdonald quit the club before kick off.

He walked out on the crisis-hit outfit after being benched for their clash at the Shyberry Excelsior.

And last night Macdonald hit back at Bankies boss Ian McCall for claiming he was trying to secure a deal behind their backs with Airdrie.

Mad Mac said : "I was playing for next to no wages for four games to be in the shop window and Ian knew that.

"I had been training with Airdrie prior to joining Clydebank but they couldn't afford to bring anyone in without putting someone out so I signed for Clydebank but it was costing me nearly as much to travel as they paid me in wages - pounds 100 a week."

McCall saw his side slump to another defeat then revealed: "Billy was on the bench for this game but for some reason he asked to speak to me.

"He didn't want to go on the bench because I think he was trying to earn himself a deal at Airdrie while playing with us, which I thought was out of order.

"If that's the type of attitude from a young boy trying to make his way in the game, it's disgusting.

"He certainly let the rest of the boys down and he won't play again for Clydebank. We can't afford people like that at our place."

Macdonald said: "I asked him why I was on the bench and he said he didn't feel I did well last week but no one played well last week.

"I said, `I'm here for a month and you're putting me as a sub so I've two games to prove myself and that's not enough. I can't influence anything from the bench.

"We had a bit of an argument. I lost the head and said, `I'm leaving, tear up my contract and keep my money because I'm better off on the buroo.

"That was just after he announced the team at the ground and I got in my car and drove off."

Airdrie's match winner, Niall Thompson, knows all about bust-ups with bosses. He revealed Brentford booted him when Ron Noades took a dislike to him.

Tommo unleashed a shot from 18 yards which scorched into the top right- hand corner in 55 minutes.

He said: "The manager didn't want anything to do with me at Brentford. Noades left me out and there's a lot more to it but he just didn't fancy me.

"It's nice to score my first for Airdrie. I've got to keep working on my shooting - I should have had five. My shooting has been terrible and I've taken a lot of abuse, even in training from my team- mates."

Thompson had an excellent first half and powered in a first-minute header which keeper Colin Scott smothered on the line.

Five minutes later his shot clipped the bar from the edge of the area.

Diamonds boss Gary Mackay said: "The boys have slaughtered him in training and in the dressing room and it must have been a relief to score.

"We went about our job in a very professional manner but there were lapses at the back that would give a manager a heart attack!"

Bankies staged a late rally as Derek McWilliams swerved a shot on to the top of the bar in 72 minutes.

With seven minutes left, sub Danny McKelvie battered a shot into the side netting with a clear view of goal following a brilliant chipped pass from Ian Cameron.

Bankies boss McCall said: "I'm bitterly disappointed again. It was a good goal that won the game but it should have been prevented.

"We certainly deserved to take something from this game but I am getting fed up saying that.

"Even 0-0 would have stopped the rot for us."
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Oct 25, 1999
Words:643
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