Derek Weir, Leeann Dempster and newly appointed club director Graham Barnstaple faced the small turnout of supporters (20+). The disappointing number was partly explained by the earlier Well Society meeting and an understanding that the club’s view was already set in stone.
Nevertheless the discussion was appreciated by the audience and after a two hour exchange of views most agreed that the club should vote yes to the 12-12-18 structure and the rest of the changes at Monday’s meeting.
The points made by the board mostly echoed those made at the Society meeting in early February. In short, getting 12 clubs with their own agendas to agree on any one topic is difficult and this package is the result of a long set of negotiations in which everyone compromised.
They argued that the Scottish game is in decline. Gate receipts are down (no gate from Rangers) and despite Motherwell playing attractive football and in second place attendances have struggled. A revamped structure would, it is hoped, encourage a new league sponsor to come forward and the ‘middle’ eight would add to the TV income.
The new structure would reduce the threat to Motherwell that would follow any future relegation. The financial hit would be hugely reduced and there would be a greater chance of a return to the top flight.
The board were pressed on several points but the topic of the voting structure kept coming to the fore. It was seem as a barrier to change and prevented the idea of cherry picking the desirable sections of the package. The deal includes a number of protected sections that will remain unchanged for three years but although the majority of decisions will be made on a 9-3 basis the 11-1 will remain despite the admission that it was “indefensible”.
The discussion widened to examine the SPL’s promotion of the game and there was agreement that a much more proactive job was needed. It seems that our CEO will be making a presentation to the SPL board at Monday’s meeting on that topic.
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