Minister announces football fans working group

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Sport and Commonwealth Games Secretary Shona Robison announced the formation of an "independent working group that will look at how we can increase and improve fans involvement within football clubs", on 22 April 2014.

Chaired by Stephen Morrow - a senior lecturer in Sport Finance at the University of Stirling - it will have representation from the SFA, SPFL and Supporters Direct Scotland, with others to be appointed as appropriate.

Several Scottish football clubs have embraced fan ownership in recent years including Clyde, Dundee, Dunfermline Athletic, Motherwell, Stirling Albion and Stranraer which all now have forms of community or fan ownership.

Hearts FC are on the verge of introducing a similar structure after creditors agreed the sale of shares to chairwoman Ann Budge, who plans to transfer ownership to fans' group Foundation of Hearts.

Scottish Green MSP Alison Johnstone, who was leading the member's debate on Fan Ownership of Football Clubs, welcomed Ms Robison's announcement can called for an "ambitious mandate" and for the group to look at "radical recommendations".

Ms Johnstone also pointed to a poll released by the Scottish Green Party which showed 87% of those asked support fan trusts having right of first refusal if their club came up for sale, or when it went into administration.

Their research also reports 72% would support a right to buy their local club for a market value at any time.

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