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New rule book for merged body

A rule book has been drawn up for the proposed Scottish Professional Football League, and clubs will be able to see the documents before deciding whether or not to vote in favour of the new set-up.

The Scottish Premier League and the Scottish Football League members are expected to hold their respective votes next month, with a single, merged body considered to be possible in time for the beginning of next season.

See our new dossier on league reconstruction - and how you can shape the debate


As part of the league reconstruction proposals, a fairer wealth distribution model will be introduced, along with more play-offs between leagues and, most contentiously, a 12-12-18 structure for Scotland's 42 professional clubs. Many teams are still uncertain about the latter, but a majority want to see the SPL and the SFL merge.


Some involved in the discussions were sceptical that a rule book could be drawn up in time for the beginning of next season. However, a draft was begun and Herald Sport under-stands lawyers involved in writing it signed off on a final version earlier this week. This will reassure those individuals who are concerned about timescale, but may also prompt wavering or sceptical clubs into a “yes” vote.

There is still work to be done to persuade enough clubs to vote in favour, but the general mood appears to be that the benefits of the plans, in particular the financial model – in which the top two clubs will earn less prize money and the others more – and the single league body are worth voting for.

However, many remain opposed to the 12-12-18  set-up, which involves the top two divisions splitting  mid-season into three leagues of eight.

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