Scottish football updates amid coronavirus pandemic

The coronavirus pandemic has caused havoc with Scottish football, forcing difficult decisions and pleas for help from clubs across the country.

Scottish Premiership clubs are permitted to resume training on 11 June while other leagues wishing to resume must prove they can meet testing and other health measures.

BBC Scotland brings you the latest updates from your club.

Aberdeen banner

Aberdeen chairman Dave Cormack initially predicted a "looming £5m gap in cashflow" as the coronavirus pandemic took hold and Cormack's group of investors gave the club a £2m cash injection in a bid to stem this shortfall. And last month the chairman cited the "daunting prospect" of a further £1m in losses following the early end to the season, which the Pittodrie club backed.

Manager Derek McInnes, his coaching staff and players are among half of the club's employees who have taken wage deferrals of between 10% and 30% for four months.

Cormack asked fans not to ask for partial refunds of last term's season tickets if they feel they can. Around 6,500 tickets have been sold for the new season, with the deadline for renewals extended to 10 July. The club's pandemic protection cover in their insurance policy ceased at the end of April.

The Dons were one of 13 clubs who voted in favour of the defeated proposal for an independent inquiry in the SPFL's season-ending ballot and Cormack said in early June that he would not support the idea of an expanded 14-team top flight for five years, preferring the option of a two-year temporary arrangement.

Aberdeen confirmed existing season-ticket holders will be able to watch live streams of home games played behind closed doors for free and "will continue to work with fellow Premiership clubs to explore potential arrangements to show away games".

Celtic banner

Celtic have been crowned champions for the ninth successive year after the SPFL ended the season. Neil Lennon's side were 13 points clear at the top with eight games left.

The first-team squad, manager Lennon, backroom staff and club executives have taken a voluntary and "significant reduction" in salaries. They have also agreed to defer "a significant proportion of their earnings", with the money-saving measures in place from April to June.

Celtic welcomed the outcome of clubs voting down an investigation of the SPFL resolution and urged Scottish football to "make the best of this awful situation".

The club's charity foundation has raised £450,000 to help vulnerable people in the local area and across the UK during the pandemic.

The club's season-ticket renewal deadline was pushed back from 1 May to 30 June and Celtic have confirmed that existing season-ticket holders will be able to watch live streams of home games played behind close doors for free.

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Hamilton Academical will not put season tickets on sale and will refund fans - if they wish - for the matches that remained in the curtailed campaign.

Around half of Hamilton's first-team squad were out of contract at the end of May and Alex Gogic, Aaron McGowan and George Oakley have left.

Chairman Allan Maitland says clubs relegated from curtailed leagues should receive solidarity payments.

Hearts banner

Hearts, bottom of the table and relegated when the season was called, have slim hopes of a reprieve after chair Ann Budge was given approval to work on a proposal for temporary league reconstruction. Clubs are now being asked if they would support a 14-team top flight for five years.

Budge had been co-chair of a reconstruction taskforce set up when the season-ending vote was pushed through, but talks collapsed due to insufficient support from clubs.

Hearts are taking legal advice in the wake of relegation. They voted against the SPFL's resolution, with Budge alleging the league tried to exert "undue influence" on the ballot. Hearts joined Rangers and Stranraer in a requisition to call for an independent inquiry, but it failed to garner enough backing.

Manager Daniel Stendel, who has waived his salary, says there is a clause in his contract that frees him to leave if the club are relegated. Former manager Craig Levein and assistant Austin MacPhee have now left the club after their contracts ended.

The Tynecastle club reached agreement with players over wage cuts of between 10% and 30%, while club captain Steven Naismith agreed a 50% drop.

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Hibs - who confirmed they backed the SPFL proposal - dropped from sixth to seventh when final top-flight placings were decided on a points-per-game basis.

The club have asked season-ticket holders to forego partial refunds "if they are able to" and aim to offer rewards such as invites to training as a sweetener.

Players and senior staff accepted wage deferrals of "between 20% and 50%" and the majority of employees are on furlough leave.

Chief executive Leeann Dempster quit the SPFL reconstruction group to focus on "how and when football supporters can safely return to Scottish grounds".

The club are to wear a new home shirt next season bearing the logo "Thank you NHS" as part of a charity initiative that aims to raise a six-figure sum.

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The Ayrshire club have offered fans refunds for the portion of their season tickets that were unused last term - something that would cost £142,000 should all eligible supporters apply.

The Killie Trust brought forward the scheduled handover of £40,000 to the club to provide a timely cash injection. The Trust also donated a further £10,000.

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Livingston, who finished fifth, voted in favour of the SPFL proposal to end the season and also backed the call for an independent investigation, which was defeated 27-13.

The West Lothian side have offered partial season-ticket refunds, but say full uptake would cost the club £62,000, and have urged fans "who can afford to" not to claim any money back.

The West Lothian club - who posted a record profit of £367,530 for the year ending June 2019 - are utilising the government's furlough scheme while maintaining full pay for all staff.

Chairman Robert Wilson provided a "six-figure sum" as an interest-free contingency fund and the club have also offered fans the chance to become shareholders if they pay at least £20 per month until May next year.

Livingston have called for an expansion to a permanent 14-team top flight and say league reconstruction is "the progressive way forward".

Livi confirmed existing season-ticket holders will be able watch to live streams of home games played behind closed doors for free.

Motherwell banner

Motherwell will play in Europe next season after their third-placed finish was confirmed. The club are no longer able to take "gambles" on players due to a restricted budget, says manager Stephen Robinson.

The Fir Park side have confirmed that their players and the "vast majority" of staff were put on furlough leave.

Almost 1,500 season tickets were sold in the first three weeks of sale. That compared to 327 in the same period last year. Well confirmed existing season ticket holders will be able watch to live streams of home games played behind close doors for free.

Motherwell said they voted against an independent investigation into April's vote to end the lower-league season but are open to "a review of how the structure and operation of the SPFL could be improved" once the coronavirus crisis has abated.

Rangers banner

Rangers say "the status quo cannot hold" and that many clubs have lost faith in the SPFL, despite the Ibrox side's call for an independent inquiry being voted down.

Rangers, who wanted SPFL chief executive Neil Doncaster suspended, claim clubs were not informed of a potential £10m liability and "substantial problems" with league reconstruction before they voted to end the season.

The Ibrox club voted against the SPFL's season-ending proposal and their own counter resolution was deemed "not competent" by the league's legal adviser.

Andy Halliday, Jon Flanagan and Wes Foderingham were among six players to leave at the end of May when their contracts expired.

Rangers announced a new "multi-year" kit deal with Castore, which starts in season 2020-21, and the club are progressing with plans to upgrade some of the hospitality and commercial facilities in and around Ibrox Stadium.

Manager Steven Gerrard, his staff, and the first-team squad volunteered to defer their salaries for three months.

Dave King, who left his role as chairman on 27 March, said a fresh influx of cash into the club was "on hold", but Rangers countered that by claiming "significant investment" has already been received, with "further commitments" in place.

The club froze season ticket prices for next season while allowing fans until 30 June to renew and later confirmed existing season ticket holders will be able watch to live streams of home games played behind closed doors for free.

Midfielder Ross McCrorie, who was on loan at Portsmouth, tested positive for coronavirus.

Ross County banner

The club will offer use of their new coronavirus testing machine to other Highland sports people and say each test takes 20 minutes.

Chairman Roy MacGregor confirmed they voted for the SPFL's resolution, and urged clubs to "trust" the SPFL board and come together to avoid years of recriminations.

MacGregor is "horrified" by the idea of a reduced 18-game Championship season and says Premiership clubs have a responsibility to look after lower-league sides.

County captain Marcus Fraser is leaving the club after rejecting the offer of a new contract.

The club furloughed their playing squad and are covering any shortfall to ensure they remain on full pay.

The Ross County Foundation has launched the #ForOurPeople Campaign to work with local community groups and organisations.

County confirmed existing season ticket holders will be able watch to live streams of home games played behind closed doors for free.

St Johnstone banner

St Johnstone climbed a place to sixth in the Premiership when the season was called on a points-per-game average.

Manager Tommy Wright quit after seven years in charge, while the majority of playing and non-playing staff have been furloughed. All employees received full pay for April.

Saints, who confirmed they voted for the season-ending proposal, insisted league reconstruction was "unrealistic" this summer and cited concerns about its potential impact on next term's broadcasting agreements.

The club are launching a youth development fund for fans who wish to provide financial support. All monies donated will go directly to the development and identification of young talent.

Owner Geoff Brown has called for the League Cup to be scrapped for a year to ease fixture congestion next season.

St Mirren banner

St Mirren supported the league's resolution. The Paisley club put the vast majority of their playing and non-playing staff on furlough leave, but made up the shortfall in wages.

The club put season tickets on sale on 13 April and fans who have not requested refunds from the curtailed campaign will be rewarded with free entry to a League Cup game.

Championship logo
  • Alloa Athletic chairman and Scottish FA vice-president Mike Mulraney has said: "I don't want to predict the demise of any football club. I can predict incredible financial turmoil for football." Various crowdfunding sites are raising money for the club. Mulraney "hopes" rather than "expects" football to be played in August or September.
  • Ayr United chairman Lachlan Cameron says clubs may "revolt" or face administration if forced to play behind closed doors without financial help. Ayr have offered partial season ticket refunds to fans who want them and extended by a month the deals of a group of players whose contracts were expiring, including the likes of Steven Bell, Andy Geggan, Michael Moffat and Grant Gillespie. The club "grudgingly voted yes" to calling the season despite the proposal's "many flaws," says Cameron.
  • Dundee extended the deals of all players who were out of contract at the end of May for a further month. The club confirmed it was their "intention" to reject the SPFL's proposal - before changing their mind and belatedly casting the deciding vote in favour. Dundee previously intimated their insurance cover should allow them to reimburse season-ticket holders for matches not played. The Dens Park side furloughed staff, including players, and made up the shortfall so they remained on full pay. They also thanked businessman John Bennett for suspending rent on the stadium.
  • Dundee United confirmed season-ticket holders will be able to watch a live stream of home Premiership matches for free. Previously, they announced that first-team squad members Rakish Bingham, Osman Sow, Sam Wardrop and Paul Watson would leave as free agents. Owner Mark Ogren, meanwhile, greeted news of his side's title win with "enormous pleasure and an over-riding sense of humility". The club put all players and most of their coaching staff on furlough.
  • Dunfermline Athletic released all 17 players who were out of contract to "protect the future of the club". Chairman Ross McArthur denied Inverness Caledonian Thistle's claims of "bullying and threats" by an SPFL board member. McArthur says it is "clearly apparent" he is the person being accused by Inverness. Dunfermline fans' 'Support the Pars' campaign achieved its £50,000 target in six weeks.
  • Greenock Morton expect their league season to start in October and to be able to stream games to season ticket holders and "potentially" subscribers for one-off games. The club furloughed all employees, while fans' group Morton Club Together - who have a 15% stake - raised £25,000 for the first-team budget. The club voted against an independent investigation into April's vote to end the lower-league season.
  • Inverness Caledonian Thistle alleged "bullying and threats" were made against them prior to April's vote, and the club supported Rangers' call for an independent investigation of the SPFL. All players and "almost all members of staff" were furloughed, with the club supplementing wages so all employees received full salary. The club received fan donations ranging from £10 to £10,000.
  • Partick Thistle - who were two points adrift at the bottom with a game in hand - decided not to legally challenge the SPFL vote that relegated them. The Firhill outfit backed an independent investigation into the controversial ballot. Thistle criticised Premiership clubs after a lack of support from them caused the collapse of reconstruction talks. The club pledged all staff would be retained and paid in full until the end of May. More than £150,000 was raised by supporters. Season ticket holders could claim a refund for the five home league matches not played but only 3.5% of them took up the scheme, saving the club around £75,000. Goalkeeper Scott Fox invoked the relegation release clause in his contract to leave Firhill for a second time. He first turned out for the Jags, originally as a trialist, in 2010.
  • Queen of the South chairman Billy Hewitson says it would be "financial suicide" to restart Scottish football without cash subsidies for clubs. Queens placed all players and staff on furlough until further notice.
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  • Airdrieonians parted company with assistant manager Colin Cameron in a cost-saving exercise. The club voted for the SPFL resolution but "do not accept that the league has been won".
  • Clyde were "surprised" that the collapse of plans to reorganise the leagues into a three-division structure were being "regarded as a failure" as they said such a move would have disadvantaged them. They confirmed they abstained in the SPFL EGM. Fans launched a donate-a-ticket scheme to help raise funds.
  • Dumbarton players and management took a 50% deferral on wages until further notice. Staff and players were also put on furlough. A crowdfunding campaign reached its £25,000 target in two months. The club backed the SPFL crisis plan.
  • East Fife confirmed they voted against the SPFL's proposal, and furloughed their first-team squad and management staff for three months.
  • Falkirk said they would "reluctantly accept the outcome" of the SPFL's vote to end the season and deny them the chance to win the division. They put "almost" all staff and players on furlough from 1 April, with chairman Gary Deans saying no club employee would be left out of pocket. Fans raised £5,000. Deans criticised what he called an "utter shambles" in Scottish football after league reconstruction failed to garner enough support in May.
  • Forfar Athletic, who were estimating that the shutdown would cost them around £80,000, furloughed all players, management and non-playing staff. The club voted for the SPFL resolution and say behind closed door games would be "economic suicide" for lower league clubs.
  • Montrose offered season ticket holders compensation for cancelled games, closed their stadium and placed all staff, including players and management, on the government's job retention scheme. Fans raised around £15,000.
  • Raith Rovers chairman Bill Clark was "delighted and relieved" his club were crowned League One champions. Raith backed the league resolution. Fans donated £50,000 through a crowdfunding campaign.
  • Peterhead manager Jim McInally insists it would be better for the bottom two tiers to skip next season than play behind closed doors. Chairman Rodger Morrison, who voted in favour of ending the season, provided free accommodation for NHS staff at his B&B restaurant. The club placed all employees on furlough.
  • Stranraer, eight points adrift at the bottom, were relegated after the SPFL resolution was passed. Midfielder Ryan Stevenson said: "It's such a mess. How they think this decision is the best for everyone is mind-boggling to me." The club's call, alongside Rangers and Hearts, for an independent inquiry of the SPFL was rejected in a vote.
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  • Albion Rovers have appointed Brian Reid as manager after Kevin Harper left the role in May. Goalkeeping coach Andy Carlin also departed. A Just Giving fundraiser achieved its target of £10,000.
  • Brechin City, who backed the SPFL motion, finished bottom of the table but the cancellation of the play-offs mean they stay up. A fans' fundraising page more than doubled its target. The club used the government's furlough scheme to honour players contracts.
  • Cove Rangers manager Paul Hartley has signed a new extended deal to remain in charge of the club until the summer of 2025. The Aberdeen club "welcomed" the decision to award them the title in their first season in the SPFL. Cove placed all staff on the government's job retention scheme for three months. They confirmed midfielders Fraser Fyvie and Jamie Masson and defender Daniel Higgins had agreed contract extensions.
  • Cowdenbeath confirmed they voted in favour of the SPFL's season-ending proposal. The club, fourth in League Two, said they could not sell season tickets until they knew which division they would be in.
  • Edinburgh City called for league reconstruction while confirming they voted against the SPFL's resolution.
  • Elgin City furloughed all players and staff, except secretary Keiran Carty. Chairman Graham Tatters confirmed the club voted in favour of ending the season. The club set up a fundraising page.
  • Queen's Park say they are "committed to participate in competition next season, whenever it starts and at whatever level we are asked to play".
  • Stenhousemuir chairman Iain McMenemy urged top-flight clubs to produce fresh plans for league reconstruction to avoid further "civil war" in the game. The club backed the SPFL resolution, and also voted in favour of an independent inquiry of the process. Stenny launched a share issue, and auctioned off the chance to play for the team, while manager Davie Irons and his coaching staff, Kevin McGoldrick and David Binnie, waived their salaries.
  • Stirling Albion assistant manager Martin Hardie has left. The club say it was a "no-brainer" to back the SPFL's season-ending resolution. Stirling were the first Scottish club to offer season ticket holders refunds on the final five home games of the season. However, they have asked fans to consider carrying it forward to next term, and instead taking a discount off the price of their renewal.
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  • Glasgow City were due to play a Women's Champions League quarter-final with Wolfsburg at the end of March and beginning of April, but are now waiting to hear whether the tournament will resume.
  • The English Women's Super League season has been declared over but in Scotland it is a summer league that runs from February to November, so they are not under such pressure with dates.
  • Only one matchday of the SWPL had been played before the league was suspended.

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