Neil Doncaster today admitted he was “absolutely delighted” the SPFL’s decision to end the season prematurely and relegate Hearts, Partick Thistle and Stranraer has been “vindicated” by the SFA arbitration panel.   

Hearts and Partick, who were forced to drop down into the Championship and League One respectively after final placings were decided on a points per game basis and league reconstruction was rejected last month, had been seeking to have the ruling overturned or receive £10m in compensation.

But after a week of “forensic examination” the three man independent panel set up by the SFA has decided unanimously the SPFL were entitled to pass the resolution meaning the promotions of Dundee United, Raith Rovers and Cove Rangers all stand.  

“This is a clear, comprehensive and unanimous decision,” said SPFL chief executive Doncaster. “I am absolutely delighted that our approach has been vindicated throughout, following an intense period of legal scrutiny and review.

“It has been a very demanding process, but I had complete confidence in the actions and decisions of the SPFL board and the SPFL executive team.”