SPL agree on new league format


Apr 10, 2010
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Some clubs were sceptical about a move to a 10-team top league​

The 12 Scottish Premier League clubs have reached a broad agreement at a meeting at Hampden for a 10-team top league and a second tier of 12 teams.

The SPL will now consult the Scottish Football Association and the Scottish Football League to progress the idea.

A top tier of 14 teams had looked the most likely alternative to the 10-10 arrangement proposed by the SPL after some clubs had voiced reservations.

But Monday's meeting suggests those clubs are now convinced of its merits.

A statement released by the SPL after the meeting said: "The Scottish Premier League clubs today reaffirmed their commitment to the work of the Strategic Review Group to develop a structure for the whole of Scottish football.

"Broad support was given to progressing a 10-team Premiership and a 12-team Championship at the top of a pyramid for Scottish football as the preferred option.

"The SPL clubs have asked the executive team to further develop aspects of these proposals and to update the Strategic Review Group's report."

SPL chief executive Neil Doncaster and the league's chairman Ralph Topping were keen on a 10-10 format, an arrangement favoured by Celtic and Rangers.

However, Dundee United, Hearts, Inverness Caledonian Thistle and Kilmarnock had expressed doubts about that set-up and St Mirren had stated their preference for a league of 14.

Doncaster said on Monday afternoon: "Clearly when clubs haven't got a detailed, finalised plan in front of them, then we need to understand that clubs want to reserve their final position and need to see a final document in front of them before they can give their ringing endorsement.

"But all 12 clubs have agreed to the statement today so hopefully this gives us a mandate to move forward."

Among those lobbied for support by the SPL top duo in the past 10 days were Dundee United chairman Stephen Thompson and Hearts owner Vladimir Romanov.

Following the first meeting of all 12 clubs on 4 January, a 16-team league, known to be popular among fans, was seemingly dismissed as unworkable.

Doncaster and Topping said that it was not financially viable, with their calculations seeing each club losing around £1m per year as a result of lost matches and television revenue.

A 14-team league would have involved a split, a much-maligned aspect of the current system, but it would have seen the end of the fixture imbalances that have been thrown up in recent seasons since teams would have played their opponents twice each either side of the division.

No vote was possible at Monday's gathering, since a formal resolution needs to be put to clubs 14 days beforehand and that had not happened.

The package of reform proposed by the SPL also involves play-offs, an earlier start to the season and a winter shutdown.

Article by the BBC. Original Article.
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There will be people who aren't a fan of the idea, but I like the sound of it. The winter break being re-introduced is a good idea to be honest [especially after this winter.] As for the playoffs idea, we'll need to see how that's implimented.
Not sure this is really the answer.

Ideally I'd want a 16 team league where teams play each other twice. This won't happen for financial reasons though, as the OF need to play 4 times and other clubs need the revenue from playing Rangers and Celtic. And if they can't change it to that, then I'm not sure what I want to see changed.
Meh, imho league re-construction isn't the way forward for Scottish football, better youth coaching and playing conditions are. Suppose we're at least doing something, but I'd rather we kept 12 teams, it's repetitive enough as it is.
They should make it 16, it would get more clubs better and slightly better off. Making a 10 team Premier League, and a 12 team First Division makes no difference at all :S
Actually, what I would want to see changed is promotion/relegation from the 3rd division from regional divisions. I don't like how the teams won't ever change.
The league reconstruction will not improve scottish football, it will make the clubs have a little bit more tv revenue , but this extra money will not be invested by any club , what needs to happen in Scotland is we need to copy the way the Dutch football association works, where they invest a major % of there budget in Grass roots football, I.E football academy's and football schools! this will help Scottish football not the clubs getting more TV money
once again the fans opinion doesn't count, most of us wanted a 14 or 16 team league but the beaks decided otherwise.
Personnally I dind't like the idea at first but after reading the herald aboput ten minutes ago i am totally agreeing with it.

Season starts earlier goof thing
3 less games so less fixture congestion good thing
teams recieve greater share of money which ultimately is the goal so very good thing

So In the future we may see 16 teams or maybe more :)

but for now we have to improve the qaulity of the teams first :)

If you do the maths say the SPL are givin 10,000,000 on tv funds

10,000,000 divided by 14 = £714,285.71

10,000,000 divided by 10 = £1,000,000

now over 3 seasons it will be a greater diffrence and im sure they probably generate more money than that
This will make football so boring playing the same team 4 times and there will be little opportunity for teams like st mirren and hamilton to attract big names as they will be in a lower league and the traditional top 7 is

not in order
dundee utd

but this leaves one team which would usually be challenging for europe in a relegation fight which will decrease attendances and stop youth players getting chances

20 team league is what i want 18 or 16 is more likely