Smith deal off

Last updated : 30 January 2009 By Stuart Gillespie
However, as this is the SPL, things aren't that simple. Franco Miranda is over 21, but he doesn't count as he's on loan from a club outwith Scotland. The player in question that has prevented us from signing Smith is Scott Cuthbert, who is on loan from Celtic.

While Cuthbert is over 21, he has played for the Scotland under-21 side this season - and has been used as part of our quota of under-21 players in various competitions. But apparently that's not good enough for the SPL. Rumours suggest there were attempts for an exception to be made, but it seems this wasn't possible - probably because we're not one of the Old Firm sides.

As a result, Smith won't be coming to Saints. A permanent deal is out of the question as he's on at least three times as much money as the rest of our squad. It looks like Inverness Caley Thistle are going to sign him now, although they might want to check the rules just to make sure.

While we shouldn't have been caught out like this, we're not the only ones to suffer from this silly rule this week. Hamilton had to abandon their plan to bring in Fabian Yantorno from Hibs for exactly the same reason.