Scottish Premiership clubs back new initiative for growth as Celtic watch on

By Euan Davidson

September 14, 2021

Scottish Premiership clubs, including Aberdeen and Hearts, have launched an initiative to grow the league’s revenues, with Celtic surely watching closely.

Announced on Hearts’ website [HMFC], 5 leading Scottish clubs are investing in an independent review to boost the coffers of the country’s top-flight. Consistently, despite international interest, Scottish football is undersold. Especially in terms of licensing and broadcasting rights.

According to the announcement, the clubs are to work with Deloitte to configure strategies for developing the game in Scotland.

The statement said:

“As a group of Clubs, who will spend around £600m over the next ten years (in both operations and infrastructure), we believe a clear vision and strategy with measurable goals is needed if Scottish Football is to continue to grow and prosper on and off the pitch, and ultimately compete with similar-sized countries and leagues across Europe.

“Deloitte’s Sports Business Group has been engaged to complete the first phase of a six-month review with the goal of developing a blueprint/road map to shape and guide the future of Scottish professional football.

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“In order to achieve this, the review will consult with SPFL stakeholders to evaluate the current situation in the Scottish game, while exploring new and innovative ideas, and best practices across the industry.”

It then goes on to list its key aims. Commercial growth, growing the SPFL brand, structuring and strategic projects are the four pillars of the research.

Celtic should embrace opportunity to increase the potential of the Scottish Premiership

It’s a far cry from the talk of Atlantic Leagues and all the rest. For far, far too long, the potential of the Scottish top-flight has been neglected. Once the finding of this report are made public, it’ll be interesting to see what Scottish Premiership clubs can do to grow the game.

However, getting SPFL clubs to agree on anything is a tall order. Even when it’s something that could be mutually beneficial for each.

Photo by Jeff Holmes/Getty Images

Still, this is to be treated with optimism. If the standard across the league improves, with clubs making more money, then that benefits Celtic. It means the gap between European and domestic competition could be narrower. That’d serve us well.

When we compare the Scottish top flight with leagues across Europe, we’re surely aware we can think bigger. The Eredivisie and Portugal’s Liga NOS rank higher in the UEFA coefficient table. Yet, consider the worldwide interest of Celtic and Rangers. And, the comparable populations of each country. Surely, these factors indictate we can sell ourselves better.

It’ll be legitimately interesting to see how the league can grow.

Read more: Mikey Johnston’s return timeline mystery as still no sign of Celtic man