SPFL reconstruction: Falkirk League One opponents confirmed

Falkirk now know their opponents in the SPFL next season – but don’t know when it will kick-off.

By David Oliver
Monday, 15th June 2020, 12:49 pm
Updated Monday, 15th June 2020, 12:50 pm
Falkirk FC
Falkirk FC

The SPFL announced this lunchtime that the last roll of the dice in the great reconstruction debate that has dominated the past three months, had failed.

Next season’s Scottish football set-up will be unchanged as leagues of 12-10-10-10 with the Bairns remaining in League One after finishing runners-up in the 2019-20 early finish.

Stenhousemuir were always destined to remain in the bottom tier regardless of how the leagues were shaken-up – or in this instance, didn’t.

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The Bairns will now square off against former boss Paul Hartley whose Cove Rangers side were promoted as League Two winners, as well as Peterhead, Forfar, East Fife, Airdrie, Montrose, Partick Thistle, Dumbarton and Clyde.

However it is unknown when the League One campaign will kick off.

The Premiership begins in August with Championship sides, including Raith Rovers and Hearts, beginning a shortened season in October.

Just 16 of the 42 clubs polled favoured changing to a 14-10-10-10 structure.

Neil Doncaster, chief executive of the SPFL said: “In recent weeks, we’ve been consulting closely with our clubs regarding possible reconstruction and, based on the feedback we received, the board decided to ask all 42 clubs to give their views so that we could have absolute clarity, which we’ve achieved today.

“Whilst a number of clubs were in favour of a new divisional set-up, the support for it was insufficient and we will now move forward with a fixture programme for Season 2020/21 based on the current 12-10-10-10 structure.

“Due to the restrictions forced upon us by the coronavirus outbreak, the Championship clubs also voted overwhelmingly to play each other three times next season, rather than four, which enables a later start to the Championship league season.”

Discussions regarding arrangements for Leagues 1 and 2 remain ongoing, the SPFL said.

The decision also means that Lowland and Highland League champions Kelty Hearts and Brora Rangers will miss their chance to be admitted to the SPFL ranks.