A former SFA chief has said players and referees to be tested to allow football fixtures to be resumed.
The news comes after First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said mass gatherings are unlikely to return “anytime soon” as the country continues to grapple with the coronavirus pandemic.
Dundee and Dundee United fans have said they’d rather see football back in some capacity – even if it meant playing fixtures behind closed doors.
Ex SFA chief executive, Gordon Smith agreed with local supporters that the introduction of closed door games could be one way of getting “a big part of Scotland’s society” back up and running.
However he said that, whether games resumed without fans or continued to be cancelled all together, clubs would feel the sting financially.
He added: “The closed door games are possibly the quickest option, players, officials and members of the press get tested and we can get games up and running again.
“The only downside to this, speaking as an ex-player, is the matches will be soulless, the game is nothing without the fans.
“A scenario further down the line could be that fans could return to the stadium but clubs would need to issue health warnings when purchasing briefs.
“One thing is for certain, this current situation will be having a major impact on Scottish football clubs, whose income relies on fans coming through the gates.”
Diehard Dundee United fan, Scott Duncan from the Hilltown said the options of testing players was something he supported.
He added: “I wasn’t surprised by the announcement that football could be off the agenda until 2021 given the way the coronavirus pandemic has played out around the world.
“How do the clubs go about marketing for next season? They’d no doubt be keen to get season tickets sold given the financial void of recent weeks. It might be the case that we’ll be watching these games on streaming services.”
Despite being on the opposite side of the divide, Dundee fan Peter Campbell backed player-testing to allow fixtures to go ahead.
He added: “We need something else to talk about, other than the virus, and football provides that.
“Providing they test the players, staff and officials this shouldn’t be a big issue. Other countries are experimenting with creating an ambience if matches are played behind closed doors for TV. Perhaps they can experiment with social distancing in stadiums at some point.”
Steve Finan, author of Over the Turnstiles and Arabs Away, said the current situation draws parallels with football before and after the Second World War
He added: “Be prepared for the pre and post-virus football landscape to be very different. The teams that came out of the war and got back on track quickly were those with the most loyal supporters.”
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