THE Scottish Premier League and Scottish Football League will seek to create a rulebook for their 12-12-18 reconstruction proposal following meetings involving senior clubs this week. If progress is made, the intention remains to have the new set-up in place for the start of next season.
No formal votes will be taken at the two gatherings that will see the 12 SPL clubs discuss the revamp on Monday, before SFL clubs do likewise three days later.
Support will, however, be sought for the plans through a show of hands. Not until it has been established that 11 of the 12 top flight clubs and 22 of the 29 SFL clubs – Rangers, as associate members, do not have a vote – will the governing bodies be willing to formulate a document for clubs to formally approve. The SPL and SFL clubs will be provided with details on such issues as the percentage split of central revenues for all league placings and the nature of relegation and play-offs between the second 12 and the 18-team divisions. However, the clubs and the governing body find themselves in a potential bind. Clubs believe that, not until an outline of such details as income from possible sponsorships is available can they commit, while the governing bodies argue that these very aspects cannot be finalised until the configuration of senior clubs is established.
Some SFL clubs are believed to be further concerned about the new set-up being rushed through without full understanding of the implications of an 18-club lower tier, wherein an unavoidably high number of meaningless end-of-season games could be targeted by match fixers.
Meanwhile, SPL insiders insist that their half-season timescale to implement the changes is no tighter than that which clubs were required to work within to establish the current breakaway top flight 14 years ago.