Report from Fan Meeting on Reconstruction Print This Post

The Raith Supporters Trust attended the Fans meeting on League Reconstruction last night at Starks Park. It was an interesting and frank session with Turnbull Hutton and Eric Drysdale leading the discussion and a number of other Rovers Directors present. Below is a brief summary of the main points discussed:

The SFL have a ‘shopping list’ of issues they’d like to address in any reconstruction, namely:

  1. A single league body
  2. Fairer distribution of money
  3. An easing of the ground regulations to get into top flight (seats, undersoil heating etc)
  4. Voting rights being dominated by the Old Firm
  5. More promotion and relegation between divisions
  6. Number of teams in each division (bigger divisions, not playing each other 4 times)

The Board of RRFC felt that the 12-12-18 proposal meets all these except the last item on the above list.

  • The SPL and SFL will merge, this is not a takeover by one of the other
  • The Old Firm veto will end as the new league body will have 9 Directors: 3 from the Premier, 2 from the Championship, 1 from the National League, 2 Non-executive Directors and a Chairperson
  • There will be two automatic promotion spots from National League to the Championship, and a 6-team playoff between the bottom 2 in the Championship and those in positions 3-6 in  the National League
  • A pyramid has been proposed, but this is dependent on the SFA being able to get agreement with the non-league bodies to set up two national feeder leagues – It was felt this probably won’t happen in the short term.
  • SPL teams are giving up money in order to create a better model lower down the league structure. This means teams finishing in the top half of the Championship before the split receiving significantly more money than at present (an additional £419k for the winners). For example if Raith Rovers finished second again  they would receive an extra £352k on top of the current £90k
  • The other potential benefit to clubs lower down in the structure will be that any sponsorship or TV money over and above what is currently raised will trickle down to all 42 clubs, rather than being kept by the SPL clubs.
  • Ground regulations will be relaxed and will be handled more on a case-by-case common sense basis.
  • Promotion and relegation between Premier and Championship will be done through the “Middle 8 split” consisting of the bottom four teams from the Premier and top four teams from the Championship. The middle 8 would start with everyone on zero points potentially making it a more exciting ‘sprint’

The Board of RRFC felt that while 12-12-18 is not seen as ideal, it is really the only model on the table. Many other configurations have been discussed and researched, but could not be made to work financially. The club is concerned that if it doesn’t go ahead then the SPL will invite clubs into an SPL2 and do nothing to address any of the concerns on the shopping list.

They felt that while the proposals don’t deliver bigger leagues at the top end of the game they do mean that the majority of the 42 teams in Scotland will play a greater number of teams each season than they currently do. They see the current proposal as a window of opportunity to move forward, and the only option that will allow Raith Rovers to break out of its current financial situation. They recognise that it is not perfect, but believe it is the only way forward which is likely to be offered. While not perfect, going forward the single league body and change in voting rights mean that it will be much easier to change the make-up of the divisions in future if 12-12-18 is found not to be the right structure.

The session was well attended and we appreciate the RRFC Board giving us the chance to find out more about the proposals and put our views to the Board. If you have any thoughts then please let us know at chairman@raithtrust.org.uk

 

Clyde FC to be debt-free and self-sufficient in 2014 Print This Post

Great news from the Bully Wee – they’re making great strides towards putting their financial problems behind them. Congratulations to all involved there!
Club Debt Falls Below £100k

Trust Newsletter, February 2013 Print This Post

Download our latest newsletter here

Survey Shows Fans Unconvinced By League Shake-Up Print This Post

Our recent survey of Raith Rovers fans has shown that most still need convincing on the radical changes to Scottish football being discussed this week.

The survey of almost 300 Rovers fans showed that less than a quarter of fans support the move to a 12-12-18 set up splitting into three leagues of eight (23%). There was more encouraging news on other aspects of the proposals with the move to one league body and a fairer distribution of money in the game both strongly supported (88% and 98% respectively).

87% of fans didn’t feel adequately consulted by the football authorities.

Commenting on the results, Chairman of the Raith Supporters Trust Alan Russell said “I am hugely encouraged that there is agreement on a move to one league body and a fairer sharing out of money. These are two changes that would benefit both Raith Rovers and Scottish football.

Russell added ‘These results also show that there is a lot of scepticism amongst Rovers fans about the proposed league structure and a degree of frustration around the lack of proper consultation with supporters. The most disappointing thing about this whole debate is that yet again the views of fans seemed to have been ignored.  Over the last few years at Raith Rovers we have made great progress with fans and the club working together and fan representation on the Board of Directors. It is just a shame that the wider football authorities still haven’t woken up to the contribution supporters can make. Football is for fans and if those in charge listen to their views then Scottish football can have a much stronger future”.

You can view the full results here

We want your views on league reconstruction! Print This Post

The Raith Supporters Trust are keen to find out what Rovers fans think of the league reconstruction being proposed by the football authorities. We have put together a short online survey which you can access at the link below.

http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/RRFCfansurvey

The survey should only take five minutes to fill in as it is all tick the box questions and all responses are completely confidential.

We will be using the results to let the RRFC Board know how Rovers fans feel on this important issue.

It doesn’t matter whether you are a Supporters Trust member or not, we are keen to hear from as many Rovers fans as possible so please take the time to fill it in and tell as many fellow fans about it as possible. Your views are extremely important to us.

 

 

League Reconstruction – What Do You Think? Print This Post

A press conference was held yesterday at Hampden to announce the latest reconstruction plans. Read the article on the BBC website for more information on the key points:

  • SPL proposal is for a 12-12-18 structure
  • Top two leagues to split into three leagues of eight after 22 matches then play a further seven home and seven away games
  • Leagues will be called Premier Division, Championship and National League
  • Top eight teams to play for title and European places; middle eight to contest promotion and relegation in and out of Premier Division; bottom eight to decide who drops into National League
  • 11 out of 12 SPL clubs need to vote in favour of plans, while the proposal requires approval of 23 out of 30 SFL clubs
  • One league body to replace SPL and SFL

We’re talking with the Raith Rovers board to find out their thoughts on the proposal, and would also like to know the views of as many of our members as possible. Use the comments area here, our Facebook page, or come and talk to us at the Trust table in the south stand on match days.

Trust Board Meeting, 24th September 2012 Print This Post

Venue: Novar Bar, Kirkcaldy
Present: John Mainland (JM), James Proctor (JP), Niall Russell (NR) & Alan Russell (AR).
Apologies: Steven Lawther (SL), Tam Cunningham (TC), Graeme Condie (GC) and Steve Wallace (SW)
Read the rest of this entry »

Raith Trust attend Fan’s conference Print This Post

The Raith Supporters Trust attended the Supporters Direct Scotland Conference on Sunday at the Falkirk Stadium. This is the opportunity for Trusts across Scotland to get together and talk about the challenges facing Trusts and Scottish football. It was an interesting day with a number of speakers including Paul Goodwin, Chief Executive of Supporters Direct Scotland, Professor Stephen Morrow an expert in football finance from Stirling University, David Lampitt the Head of Supporters Direct UK.

Perhaps the two most interesting talks of the day were David Longmuir, Chief Executive of the SFL and the Falkirk manager Steven Pressley. Pressley spoke well and gave a passionate speech on what he thought was wrong with the Scottish game. You can read what he said here:

http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/falkirk-boss-steven-pressley-issues-1458525

David Longmuir of the SFL outlined the thinking behind the SFL proposals for restructuring the game in Scotland.  This includes a 16/10/16 set up with the main objectives below:

  • increase the size of the top league
  • remove the need to play each other four times
  • create a ten team league in the middle that helps facilitate progress between the leagues
  • create a more equitable distribution of finances
  • removes the financial ‘cliff’ that exists when teams are relegated out of the SPL
  • introduce a pyramid system at the bottom of the third tier (dependent on the structure below allowing this to happen)

A sixteen team top league reduces the number of games top flight clubs have so the plan is to create a sectional league cup with groups of four in a format similar to the Champions League or a World Cup. Longmuir was impressive and was very open to hearing what Trust thought of the plans.  The main problem seems to be getting agreement of the SPL clubs and he admitted that ‘consensus was the biggest hurdle to change’.

In the afternoon session Raith Trust Board member James Proctor updated us on progress on his Supporters Charter project. More info available on that here:  http://www.scottishfa.co.uk/scottish_football.cfm?page=3438

Supporters Direct Scotland now have a dedicated section on Pie and Bovril website and you can find out more at www.scottishfans.org

Trust Board Meeting, 30th July 2012 Print This Post

Venue: Novar Bar, Kirkcaldy
Present: John Mainland (JM), James Proctor (JP), Tam Cunningham (TC), Niall Russell (NR), Steve Wallace (SW), Graeme Condie (GC) and Alan Russell (AR)
Apologies: Steven Lawther (SL)
Read the rest of this entry »

Let’s Fill Starks Park! Print This Post

Raith Supporters Trust has called on all football supporters in the Kirkcaldy area to play their part in the Sell Out Saturday campaign this weekend.

Alan Russell, Chairman of the Raith Supporters Trust said:
“The last few months has been a difficult time for Scottish football but we were delighted that our club played such a leading role and, more importantly, that the voice of supporters was heard loud and clear on the whole Rangers debate. Now that issue is settled we need to focus on football and that starts with our first league game on Saturday.”
“There is a Scotland wide campaign to sell out football grounds and I would love it if we could sell out Starks Park for the game against Hamilton. We have seen the potential level of support for Raith Rovers in recent seasons with the club taking 3,000 fans to East End for a league match and over 8,000 fans to Hampden for our Scottish Cup Semi-final. We can do it so I would ask anyone with an interest in the Rovers or football in general to come along to the game and bring a friend or two or three! Football is for fans and if people get behind their local team then both Scottish football and the Rovers can have a much stronger future.”