SCOTTISH FOOTBALL NEEDS REGULATION LIKE ENGLAND, SAY FANS  as Date set for Round Table Discussion on Governance in Scottish Football

Date: 19th March 2024


SCOTTISH FOOTBALL NEEDS REGULATION LIKE ENGLAND, SAY FANS  as Date set for Round Table Discussion on Governance in Scottish Football

* Scottish national fans body welcomes independent regulator in England
* Roundtable hosted by Scottish Government on 8 May “opens door to reform”
* Independent scrutiny of game in Scotland welcomed by MSPs

The Scottish Football Supporters Association (SFSA) has welcomed as “historic” the UK parliament’s introduction of legislation for an independent football regulator in England, and has confirmed its determination to see similar “accountability with real teeth” in Scotland.

“With regulation of the governance and finance of English football moving apace, the need and opportunity to achieve proper independent scrutiny of how the game is run and owned in Scotland has added urgency,” commented SFSA CEO Stuart Murphy, himself a former club director.

Following a passionate debate at Holyrood on 31 January, in which MSPs from all parties welcomed the fan-led review of Scottish football published by SFSA last year, the Scottish Government has now established a formal Roundtable for stakeholders across the game to look at how it run here. The Roundtable will meet for the first time on 8th May 2024.

“While the set-up of Scottish football is much smaller than in England, the principle behind the call for regulation is the same,” said the SFSA’s Stuart Murphy. “The paying public in Scotland needs and deserves proper transparency and accountability for our national game.

“We are open to the form this might take, up to and including statutory regulation. But the days of football in Scotland marking its own homework are over. The debate is now about how – not whether – such independent scrutiny should happen.”

The SFSA, which brings together over 80,000 supporters and affiliate groups across Scotland, published the first ever fan-led review of the game in Scotland, Rebuilding Scottish Football, in 2023. The resulting Scottish Parliament members’ debate, led by Ben MacPherson MSP in January 2024, acknowledged the importance of its central recommendation – the need for independent scrutiny and appropriate regulation of the finance, governance and conduct of football in Scotland.

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For further comment, contact: Paul Goodwin 07702 252519

* The Scottish Football Supporters Association (SFSA) was founded in 2015 and has over 80,000 individual and affiliate members. It is the largest supporters group in the country, and campaigns for reform and fan engagement across the game.
* Rebuilding Scottish Football: A Fan-Led Review of the Game was first published in June 2023.
* The Scottish Parliament’s members’ debate on Enhancing Scottish Football was held on 31st January 2024 at Holyrood, prompted by the SFSA’s report.

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