A DEAL to save one of Scotland's oldest football clubs has been sealed.

St Mirren have completed the agreement to sell their Love Street ground to Tesco and build a new stadium less than a mile away.

The cash-strapped club will also now be able to pay off their £2million-plus debt.

The remaining planning issues were resolved at a meeting of Renfrewshire Council's planning board yesterday, allowing the deal to go ahead.

St Mirren chairman Stewart Gilmour said: "This is a historic day - the club has been saved.

"We said from the start the only way the club could survive in its present form and remain in Paisley would be to sell our ground for enough money to pay off our debts and build a new Premier League-standard stadium.

"Thankfully, for the club, fans, players and the whole of Paisley and Renfrewshire this has now been achieved.

"We can look forward to a new era of financial stability and, hopefully, success on the park."

The deal with Tesco - worth £15m - will see it build St Mirren a new stadium on derelict land in Greenhill Road, Paisley, and pay a cash sum which will allow the club to pay off its debts.

Work on the new stadium is expected to start this summer and St Mirren aim to kick off the 2008 season in their new home.

Tesco's Scottish corporate affairs manager Nick Gellatly said: "Tesco has a long-standing commitment to Renfrewshire and we are delighted to be working with St Mirren on this very exciting project."