Referees seek SPL pay agreement

Referees are in discussions with the Scottish Premier League in order to determine how much officials are paid from next season.

Scottish Senior Football Referees Association chairman John McKendrick says the SPL recognises that referees should be paid £1,000 per game.

And he denied that officials had demanded a 25% increase on the £800 they currently earn for SPL matches.

Both sides want a solution in time for the start of the 2011/12 kick-off.

A statement released by McKendrick read: "Scottish referees have a positive relationship with the Scottish Premier League and have not, as has been reported, 'demanded £1,000 per game' to referee matches in the SPL for season 2011/12.

"At the request of the SSFRA in September 2008, the SPL agreed to undertake a benchmarking exercise to compare referees' fees in Scotland to those of comparable leagues in Europe, such as Bulgaria, Portugal and Belgium. This exercise was completed last season.

"Neil Doncaster, chief executive of the SPL, wrote to the SSFRA chair in October 2010 to conclude that the SPL considered that, as a future objective, referees in the SPL should be paid £1,000, as this was the typical fee that was paid to referees in comparable leagues in Europe.

"The SSFRA and the SPL have been engaged in constructive discussions since receiving the letter of October 2010, to work toward a means to pay those operating in the SPL at a comparable level to those operating in similar leagues in Europe.

"The SSFRA look forward to working with the SPL over the next few weeks to reach a final agreement on remuneration for season 2011/12 and beyond.

"The SSFRA welcomes the commitment of the SPL to engage in constructive discussion with Scottish referees.

"Referees in Scotland are mindful of the challenges facing Scottish football and wider Scottish society at this time and are working hard to ensure that an amicable solution can be found in advance of the start of season 2011/12."