THE Glenbuck Pilgrims are devastated after their Hall of Fame campaign ended in defeat.

They had punched above their weight and rallied, ending up with tens of thousands of backers from near and far.

Ironically the news from Hampden Park came on the weekend of what would have been Bill Shankly’s birthday.

His niece, Barbara Alexander, had been sent a home-made card from an anonymous well-wisher praising the group for their work.

It was another item of mail which has caused so much disappointment.

Richard McBrearty, Scottish Football Hall of Fame project director, wrote to Pilgrim Michele Palilla.

He said: “I am afraid that on this occasion your nomination for Glenbuck missed out on being inducted.

“I am sure that this news will be very disappointing for you but I can say that the work that was undertaken by your campaign to publicise the story of Glenbuck to the wider public and to get people to vote for its inclusion in the short list was acknowledged by the committee.

“This year saw an unprecedented number of public campaigns and it was of great credit to your campaign to have gathered enough votes over a relatively short space of time to ensure that Glenbuck’s name and story was put forward for consideration.”

Needless to say, there has been widespread reaction.

Pilgrim Sam Purdie said: “Bad amazing effort in a short time by a very few volunteers. Well done Michele and Ben.

Liverpool fan Gary Carney said: “I would like to thank you for your passion and letting people know where our journey began.

“And to have 50-odd pro footballers from one village, what a place Glenbuck is.”

Del Mains added: “Gutted. Please don’t give up. Shankly wouldn’t.”

They may not be getting into the Hall of Fame this year but the 54 players will feature in the Chronicle over the next few weeks.

We are putting together as much information as possible on each of the players — get in touch if you can help.