SPFL ‘seriously considering summer football’

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THE SPFL is giving serious thought to changing the league calendar to allow summer football and give players a break in the winter, according to Alloa Athletic chairman Mike Mulraney.

He pointed to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar as the target for Scottish football to aim for, adding that senior figures in the game are broadly supportive of the idea.

Snow is swept off the pitch at Dens Park before a scheduled fixture between Dundee and Hibernian is abandoned in 2003. Picture: Phil Wilkinson

Snow is swept off the pitch at Dens Park before a scheduled fixture between Dundee and Hibernian is abandoned in 2003. Picture: Phil Wilkinson

Broadcasters and supporters would also find summer football a more attractive proposition, Mulraney told the Herald.

“I’m 100 per cent for that. I think that those in my camp on this one are increasing in number. The guys who agree with me – there seem to be more of us. And it is being seriously looked at. There is a mood that the whole thing isn’t right.

“We should be playing when the fans want to watch us, in the summer. The media partners would like that. So we should play in the summer. The World Cup (in 2022) getting moved will give is the perfect opportunity to mak it happen. That gives us a target to work towards to overhaul our game. If we want a revolution in Scottish football it should be then.”

Mulraney, who added that he wasn’t a “traditionalist”, has also given his backing to artificial playing surfaces in Scotland due to the poor state of pitches in winter. Recreation Park, Alloa’s home ground, already uses a synthetic pitch.

Predicting that most senior sides would convert to artificial surfaces, Mulraney said: “Our national stadium hosted two semi-finals recently where the guys could hardly stay on their feet. Some purists will always say ‘it has to be grass’ but I’ll say to them ‘well, go show me where the grass is in winter’ as I’m fed up looking at mud and sand.”

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