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CELTIC TITLE: CLUBS STRUGGLING FOR PLAYERS

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CELTIC will move closer to their ninth successive title when the Premiership clubs have another virtual meeting tomorrow.

Five of the 12 top-flight clubs have revealed they do not have enough contracted players to field entire teams to complete the season, according to a report in the Daily Record.

The campaign went into lockdown in mid-march due to the coronavirus pandemic with the champions in pole position in the Premiership, 13 points clear with only eight games to play.

It is also understood nine of the teams are resigned to the SPFL blowing an immediate full-time whistle on the campaign as they did with the three other divisions last month when they awarded the championships to Dundee United, Raith Rovers and Cove Rangers.

If the Hampden chiefs call a premature halt to the term they will be in the position to distribute around £7.5million of prize money among the 12 members.

The clubs held an emergency summit by conference on Friday when a number of topics were debated, including winding up the season, crowning Neil Lennon’s men worthy champions and relegating Hearts, who were four points adrift of Hamilton Accies when the game went into cold storage.

The most up-to-date advice from government and health officials indicates football might not make a comeback until October at the earliest.

Crisis talks between the SFA, SPFL and public health sports and wellbeing minister Joe FitzPatrick are also scheduled to take place tomorrow as the game prepares for an extended lockdown.

SPFL board members Stewart Robertson, of the Ibrox club, Motherwell’s Alan Burrows and Hamilton Accies vice-chairman Les Gray are all expected to be part of the discussions.

They have been given permission to report back to league chief executive Neil Doncaster who has already secured a mandate to bring the season to an end.

The SPFL could be persuaded to make that call if it is clear it meets the demands of a vast majority of the Premiership outfits.

However, the decision has been further complicated by demands from Govan for an EGM a week tomorrow when all 42 clubs in the country will vote for a probe into the handling of last month’s ballot that ended the Championship, League and League Two.

It’s a question of Celtic fans being patient before the 51st flag in the club’s history is flying again in the east end of Glasgow.

 
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