SPL set for league shake-up plans

The SPL and SFL are both working on separate plans for reconstruction of the country's league set-up.

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Neil Doncaster and the SPL will hold talks over reconstruction
Neil Doncaster and the SPL will hold talks over reconstruction

A working party of three members from both bodies, chaired by a SFA representative, failed to come to fruition after initially being proposed in mid-July by Stewart Regan in the aftermath of the Rangers crisis.

An SPL delegation is considering two proposals for reconstruction, which it will discuss at a meeting on December 3.

The first would be for a 16-team top tier, with no plans yet in place for SFL clubs underneath.

The second would lead to the introduction of an SPL2, with the top two tiers both comprising 12 clubs respectively.

The leagues would then merge in mid-season, breaking into three leagues of eight teams.

On Monday, the SFL took the initiative by formulating its own three-tier senior plan, which was due to be put to its 30 member clubs at a meeting today. The proposal, driven by SFL chief executive David Longmuir, would see a 16-10-18 system coming in to play.

It also recommends the inclusion of Celtic and Rangers reserve teams into the third tier. A pyramid system would also be brought in, with play-offs between each league from the top tier down, comprising four teams per competition.

The financial distribution of the SFL-led league would be in a "straight line" format, dropping incrementally based on final league position throughout the three tiers.

The SPL believes it holds the power to block any plan its clubs do not agree with. An 11-1 vote of top flight clubs would be required to disband the league and merge with the SFL.

Longmuir said: "The SPL are aware of it. It's not something new; these talks have been going on for quite a while.

"The content and the substance of the reconstruction proposal is slightly different, but the actual principle of discussing league reconstruction is not a new subject matter.

"We've been working with our clubs on ideas and how we might wish to take the game forward and how to improve it.

"We're going to be discussing a proposal that might re-energise and refresh the game and be compelling for fans. We're only consulting with the clubs. They've got a chance to question, build on or critique it."

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