A proposal to merge the Scottish Premier League (SPL) with the Scottish Football League (SFL) will be discussed with clubs after the two bodies staged a “positive meeting” with the Scottish Football Association (SFA) on Friday.
The plan to revamp Scottish domestic football includes the formation of a single league body for the senior game, the introduction of a promotion/relegation play-off between the SPL and the SFL First Division and a single financial distribution model.
The financial demise of Rangers, which is currently bidding to re-enter the SPL as a newco, is understood to have given new impetus to the proposal. A joint statement released on behalf of the SFA, SPL and SFL said: “All three parties have been involved in productive discussions for some time on the subject of league reconstruction. The two league bodies will now engage in a wider consultation with their member clubs.”
The discussions are based on the key principles for reconstruction outlined in the Henry McLeish Review of Scottish football:
“Further consultation will take place in the near future, with the aim of reaching a positive outcome on a new model to take Scottish football forward.” the statement concluded.
News of the development was leaked to the BBC last Saturday. The absence of the Ibrox side from the SPL fixture list has created a mixture of fear and opportunity within the game.
Whether such a proposal could be rushed through for the start of next season seems unlikley, not only have the associations and clubs to agree, there are sponsorhip deals and other rights issues to consider. The start of the news season is less than two months away.