Football has been canned for the foreseeable – and it’s impossible not to feel empathy for those looking to keep things running.

From Brechin City to the likes of Alloa Athletic, clubs across Scotland are facing an uncertain future with football suspended for an indefinite period.

An uncertain time. (Photo by Colin McPherson/Corbis via Getty Images)

It’ll become clearer over the next week what the next steps are. With the world currently in the midst of a Covid-19 pandemic that’s only going to get a whole lot worse before it gets better, fans and football clubs alike are preparing for some time in cold storage.

But some clubs simply can’t afford to sit months out of action with no streams of revenue. It was recently disclosed that 43% of a club’s revenue in the Scottish top flight came from ticket sales – the average of other European leagues is 15%.


Smaller clubs are also likely to solely rely upon their gate money as you tumble down the leagues, with not only regular ticket cash going missing, but commercial and hospitality funds too.

Clubs like Edinburgh City will be tested. (Photo by Colin McPherson/Corbis via Getty Images)

Already in the couple of days after the SPFL’s bombshell announcement, we’ve had owners and club representatives come out to express their concern over long-term postponement.

Supporters and well-wishers of these clubs are probably thinking along a similar wavelength.

Nuclear option

The action Scottish football’s leaders have taken was the last resort for good reason. Only in the most severe circumstances would the indefinite suspenion be invoked.

A decision has been made. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

On Friday, teams and their staff woke up with the prospect of another matchday to get on with in the midst of the panic engulfing every other walk of life. By the time they went to bed, they were looking at no football for, well, who knows.

In a country where we rely so heavily on matchday revenue, it is hard to see how we’ll make it out of this with every club returning to how they were pre-outbreak.

You can’t relegate teams having not played all the games without causing an uproar – the same goes the other for handing out league titles and promotion. There are some serious financial and legal ramifications heading the SPFL’s way it would seem.

Big problems heading to their doorstep. (Photo by Matthew Ashton – AMA/Getty Images)

Nobody will envy those responsible for making a decision on the eventual outcome of all this but clubs have to keep their own houses in order for now. Whilst the lights are off just now, they need to make sure shutters don’t follow closely behind.

It may seem to some that saying clubs will go to wall over this if it isn’t dealt with properly is hyperbole, but sadly, it’s anything but. Clubs up and down this country simply can’t live without gate money for a long while.

Bringing prize money forward in the event of a league voidance may help matters a little – but more may be needed to help some of our clubs get through one of the toughest challenges Scottish football has ever faced.

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