THE removal of Stewart Regan as chief executive of the Scottish Football Association, as welcome as that news was, should only be the start of a root and branch reform of the game’s governing body.

His departure is an opportunity that the SFA can’t afford to miss. A chance to truly transform the organisation, and the public perception of it, for the greater good. Heck, it’s a chance to shake up the game here as a whole, and it would be national tragedy should they pass it up. Which means, they probably will.

It is time that the SFA was run more like a proper business and less like a bowling club. The blazers need to go, with a president being replaced by a board of directors for one.

The sole criteria for becoming president seems to be hanging around long enough to rise, like a bad smell, into the position. No harm to Alan McRae, but I’d rather have Paul the Octopus choose the next Scotland manager than him.

There is a huge vacuum in leadership at the top of the game, and I can only pray that it is filled by someone with fresh ideas and a long-term vision to improve football in Scotland at all levels.

In the short term, there are some areas that should be addressed, and there a few populist moves that could get the new chief executive’s reign off to a flyer.

Number one, persuade the SFA board to push the boat out to appoint a quality manager. They have shown they are willing to cough up around £500,000 a year when they revealed their hand to all and sundry during the botched Michael O’Neill negotiations, but why not try to attract outside investment by selling this bold and fresh new vision of the SFA and bump that up even more? Ireland did it to land Giovanni Trapattoni, so why can’t we?

Number two, end the uncertainty over the national stadium by binning the talk of moving to Murrayfield on the proviso of a commitment to improving Hampden. Money will again be the main stumbling block, but even developing both ends behind the goals to bring them closer to the pitch would improve the atmosphere no end, and solve the major problems that currently exist around sight-lines.

I saw a discussion on Twitter during the week about the incredible work that has been done in Germany at the likes of Stuttgart to redevelop old stadia, and there’s no reason why the SFA can’t do the same with Hampden if they can get someone in charge who is driven and who has the ambition to finally drag the body into the 21st century.

Number three, ditch the tour to South America in the summer. Nobody wants it, least of all the players, and the fee might be withheld in any case when we turn up with our under-14s.

If I was on the interview panel and a candidate walked in, said that they wanted to shake things up completely, modernise the whole association so that it runs like a business, increase accountability at the top levels so that an SFA blazer doesn’t make the wearer invincible, and place much more focus on fans, then they would be a shoe-in. The fear is though, that if a candidate does go into the SFA and say these things, it would automatically rule them out of the running.

One of the main tasks that faces the new chief executive, and what should also be one of their top priorities, is to build some bridges between the SFA and the SPFL. They work in the same corridor at Hampden, it really shouldn’t be this difficult for them to have some sort of working relationship. But they simply don’t communicate with each other.

Project Brave is the perfect example. The great white hope for the development of young players in this country doesn’t address what happens to players once they reach the age of 17. Why? Because that’s when they cease to be under the remit of Club Academy Scotland, and the SPFL and SFA haven’t deemed it necessary to perhaps get together for a wee chinwag over what the course of action should be at that critical age where we lose so many of our top prospects.

How can you have a sweeping youth programme that doesn’t deal with players once they reach senior football simply because our two governing bodies don’t speak to each other? It is ludicrous, and it needs to be sorted. Why can’t facilities be shared, staff be shared, or as radical as it is, why can’t we just have one big body?

I digress. But these are just some of the many issues the new chief executive will encounter when they walk through the Hampden doors. It is of critical importance that the SFA get someone who can address them. It could be their last chance to restore credibility to the organisation, and to the Scottish game as a whole.