SPL must reject 10-team league

Dundee Utd chairman Stephen Thompson has urged football chiefs to save our game today.

The top-flight decision makers will head to Hampden this morning to vote on a 10-team SPL the fans don't want.

Attendances are plummeting, standards are declining and supporters are looking for reconstruction to revolutionise our domestic game.

Thompson is desperate to see the idea of returning to a 10-team Premier League kicked into touch because he believes it carries too severe a financial penalty for the clubs lost to the SPL.

And he wants the summit conference to avoid a chaotic ending that takes an ailing game further into the mire. The Tannadice chief said: "A stalemate would be bad for the brand that is the SPL.

"It will look bad if we're seen to be descending into chaos on the back of indecision.

"There can't be a vote that determines the size of the league but there can be a show of hands at Hampden that gives an indication of the preferred option.

"The only thing I know in advance is that it won't be the easiest of meetings.

"There are too many strongly-held points of view for that to be the case.

"I'm prepared to listen to what other people have to say and I want to be open minded.

"I have admitted I'm not for a top 10 but it's important to listen to what people have to say on other ideas."

Record Sport's campaign for a 14-team league has grown in strength.

However, one of the main backers, St Mirren chairman Stewart Gilmour, fears the SPL voting system could paralyse the game.

A 10-2 majority is necessary to make the league bigger or smaller.

Any change to the distribution of income in the SPL must go through on an 11-1 vote.

Gilmour said: "All the clubs agree a league of 12 is not working. But the problem is the 11-1 voting system.

"It stops any change and it's impossible to get any consensus on this basis."

St Mirren, Inverness Caley Thistle and Kilmarnock are definitely in favour of an expansion to a 14-team set-up.

Aberdeen and Hibs are thought to have rejected the idea because being out of the top half of the league would deny them high-profile matches against the Old Firm.

Motherwell have admitted they will go to the meeting in nobody's camp until they have listened to all points of view. The Old Firm are also open to persuasion.

Meanwhile, the fans wait and hold their breath.