Scottish Premier League considers play-off introduction
Last updated on .From the section Football
The introduction of a promotion/relegation play-off between the country's top two divisions appears to be the most likely change in Scotland's league make-up.
After a protracted period of discussion, proposals to reconfigure the leagues, merge the Scottish Premier League and Scottish Football League and revise financial redistribution have been ultimately rejected.
However, , with four different models having been discussed.
Here, BBC Sport Scotland compares past and present play-off systems.
Scottish Football League, 2007-present
Play-offs are well established in three of Scotland's senior leagues. At the end of each season, the second-bottom side in Division One and the teams finishing second, third and fourth in Division Two enter a two-legged semi-final stage with the winners progressing to a two-legged final. The eventual winner takes up a place in the First Division.
The same system exists between Divisions Two and Three.
Last season, Dumbarton earned promotion to Division One via the play-offs (pictured above), while Albion Rovers survived relegation from the Second Division through the end-of-season matches.
Scottish Football League, 1995-97
Prior to the breakaway of clubs from the SFL to form the SPL in 1998, there were, for a brief period, play-offs between Scotland's top two divisions.
The traditional 'two-up, two-down' system that existed between the First Division and Scottish Premier Division was replaced by one automatic promotion and relegation exchange and a two-legged play-off between the second-bottom side in the top flight and the second-top team in Division One.
Through this system, Dundee United earned promotion by beating Partick Thistle on aggregate in 1996 and Hibernian survived relegation the following year by overcoming Airdrieonians.
English Football League
Play-offs in England's senior leagues solely concern promotion, with all relegation from the Premier League, Championship and League One automatic.
Teams finishing third to sixth in the Championship, League One and League Two enter a two-legged semi-final stage before a one-off final, traditionally played at Wembley.
This season's play-offs will begin on 9 May.
Promotion play-offs that follow the same format as England's Football League have been used in Italy and Spain.
In Belgium, the bottom two teams in the Pro League play-off over four matches to decide which team will be automatically relegated and who will progress to compete for a place in the top flight with three teams from the Second Division (those finishing second, third and fourth).
The four teams meet in a league format, with the winner taking up a spot in the Pro League. In 2011, after Mons and Waasland-Beveren finished on the same points, a one-off tie between the two sides was organised, with Mons winning and gaining a top-flight place.
Dutch football also features a promotion/relegation system between the Eredivisie and Eerste Divisie.
These play-offs are played over three two-legged rounds with second- and third-bottom sides from the top flight joining at the second-round stage. Ultimately, two teams win places in the Eredivisie.
Consider this it costs approximately half the price to get into a Bundesliga game than it does to an SPL game!
We need two professional leagues, x 14 (i.e. Poland) and a pyramid below feeding the game. fair wealth distribution, fair voting structure.
cheapest tickets the same as Bundesliga
3 up and 3 down . Automatic promotion for top 2 . 3rd,4th,5th,6th do playoffs with final at National stadium. same as in England yes i know lets copy it .
Morton would deserve it, but not Accies or Falkirk.
-playoffs for title
-games at the end of the season to get in playoffs
-more local derbies
-could have a West 1/East1 top league with relegation to a West2/East2
So you have traditional promotion/relegation with local derbies/interesting games
I see it as a win-win
I think this is a good shout. After all, one-off matches are how AF sides get beaten in cup finals. But then some would cry foul if there were 10+ points between 1st and 2nd and 2nd won the Play Offs
Fair point but you are not comparing like-with-like: relegation is decided between clubs in different divisions, while your suggestion is an additional 2 games (6 in total over a season) between clubs in the same division.
I thought sporting integrity didn't want more games between the same teams?
The problem is the standard, not playing each other 4x/seas, not splits, not artificially created competitiveness (which can only bring standard down) and all efforts must be to raise standard, instead of spending all available money on new stands, youth academies, etc.
Spend it on players.