PETER Lawwell, the Celtic chief executive, said last night that it would be more cost-effective for the Parkhead side to play all their matches on a Saturday at 3 o'clock and forget all about the TV deal.

While the Barclays Premier League recently celebrated a new £5.13bn TV deal for three years from Sky and BT Sports, Scottish sides receive a paltry £15m a year from the two telecommunications giants combined, regardless of the fact that approximately 10% of their subscribers are based north of the border.

A clause in the contract negotiated around the demise of Rangers allows Sky and BT to extend their contract for a further year for a comparable fee this Spring, although a small uplift may be expected if the likes of Hearts and Rangers return to the top flight. Lawwell defended the SPFL for negotiating such a sum, and insisted the odds are firmly stacked against Scottish sides.

"The SPFL take a lot of stick for the TV deal but it's a bit unfair because you can only sell what you've got and take whatever someone is willing to give you for it," he said. "There was no other competition and that's why Sky and BT picked it up.

"For me, we would like to play our games every Saturday at 3pm and forget live TV," he added. "But we can't because the other clubs in Scotland are so dependent on it. People talk about enhancing the matchday experience. At 3pm on a Saturday, we'd get more people coming to our games and that money would far outweigh what we get from TV. But I appreciate it's more vital for the other clubs."

Lawwell feels powerless to prevent Scottish kids being colonised by the soft power of the English top flight. "The English Premier League is a different ball game," said Lawwell. "That's gone beyond the valuation of football rights. It's two global communication giants with strategic objectives vying for a market share.

"We took a bit of stick for not beating the team who are 10th in Serie A," he added. "But Inter Milan's wage bill is 100 million Euros. They get 80 million Euros from their TV deal, while we get £2m. Even Burnley could outbid us for a player now. They'll get £100 million if they're relegated this season. It's ludicrous but it's a sign of the times."

Lawwell was speaking as Celtic unveiled a new £30m strip deal with American sportswear giants New Balance and he said it was an agreement which could see Celtic return to the United States. "The New Balance deal could take us back to the States in the summer," said Lawwell. "They are based in Boston and we have a big support over there. We went to Fenway Park a few years ago and it was sold out with mostly Celtic supporters. So it's a great region for Irish Scots and Celtic fans. As New Balance continue to put their portfolio together, something like that might progress. But we have to balance it with Champions League qualifiers. That's been the big problem for us. We haven't been able to go on tour because preparations have had to start earlier for qualifiers on July 15. We're getting strangled on a few fronts and that's one of them."

Starting early for qualifiers wouldn't be quite so difficult if you were in the middle of your season by then. SFA President Campbell Ogilvie is one man who feels the Scottish game might be better suited to a summer season such as the one between March and November which Ronny Deila knows from his time in Scandinavia. Officially, the club remain to be convinced, although Lawwell feels some long-term restructuring of the European football calendar may be in the pipeline.

While the European Club Assocation (ECA) - of which Celtic are part - will shortly ratify the next three years of continental competition around the existing model, Lawwell hinted that a greater share of the club's time could be devoted to continental competition.

"In terms of summer football, we've needed to be convinced in the past," he said. "But as the challenges increase, we'd certainly look at it. It IS an issue for us. If there is any initiative that can improve the game everyone has to have an open mind to it.

"There might be an appetite among supporters for a change in the calendar. We're playing the Republic of Ireland on June 13 so Scott Brown will be there. He'll then have two weeks off before the Champions League qualifiers. So the calendar is amazingly congested. As a nation we have to look at our calendar. And in Europe they have to look at theirs too.

"One possible solution is to have less domestic games and more European games," he added. "If those two come together, it might re-energise things and allow you to play in the summer. You'd need to restructure the league. This is very early days but the only way to enhance European competitions is to have less domestic fixtures.

"If there's more demand for Europe and less for domestic, you make Europe a bigger part of your calendar. And we're not alone in wanting that. But it's unlikely there will be any changes until after the next 'cycle' which is three years from now."