Media Release: Football trust urges re-think on league reconstruction

THE supporters trust at Dumbarton FC is promoting an ‘open letter’ asking football authorities and clubs in Scotland to think again before adopting league reconstruction proposals which they believe go against the wishes of the great majority of fans.

Scottish Premier League clubs are due to vote on Monday 15th April over a series of changes which would include a move to two divisions of 12 clubs and one of 18, with a series of complex adjustments.

If they agree, the proposal will go to Scottish Football League clubs.

But the Sonstrust (a registered provident society that has a share in First Division club, Dumbarton, and helps it run in a variety of ways) points out in its letter that: “Fans at all clubs have made their views overwhelmingly and repeatedly clear – they want larger divisions, fairer and more transparent finance, good governance and proper supporter representation and involvement in the running of the game at all levels.”

The supporters trust at Dumbarton argues that a good football and business case for two divisions of 16 teams and one of ten teams, which would give fans the variety they seek, is being ignored.

“No other business could hope to survive in a good shape if it so systematically dismissed the wishes of its customer base by elevating short-term interests, narrow financial projections and political posturing above the need for genuine renovation and renewal,” says the elected board of the Sonstrust in its statement, which is being circulated to other supporter bodies ahead of the crucial vote next week.

The Open Letter continues: “At present, there is obvious and deep division among both SPL and SFL clubs over league reconstruction. If 12-12-18 is pushed through, it will only be through arm-twisting and back room deals, because in reality there is no agreement.

“The desirable outcome next week would be for Scottish clubs to resolve together to seek a better formula for season 2014/15, rather than risking further conflict and divisiveness by railroading through a flawed plan that will only need to be unravelled and recast a few years hence.

“Taking a bad decision in the name of avoiding more delay, while effectively ignoring key findings of the McLeish Report and the manifest outcomes of the National Football Survey, would be to squander a historic opportunity for deeper change while further imperilling the future of the Scottish game.”

The full statement from the Sonstrust has been published in full here.

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