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SFA and SPFL Payments Demystified!

Date: 26th March 2020

Following the suspension of Scottish football, there have been a number of articles in the media regarding the financial support being provided by the Scottish FA to our clubs.

£1.5m in Club Licensing and Club Academy Scotland payments, which had been scheduled for distribution to clubs later this year, are being brought forward to help clubs through the current crisis. This is money that clubs will already have been expecting to receive, rather than additional support, but will no doubt be extremely helpful to clubs struggling with cashflow. Supporters of several clubs have been in touch with us with questions about this, so we’d like to share our understanding of the payments and what it might mean for your club.

Rather than being split equally between the 42 SPFL clubs, there is a well-established formula for calculating each club’s payment – and these cover all 98 SFA member clubs.

Firstly, the Club Licensing payments are based on each club’s licensing award level. These can be found here – clubs are categorised as entry level (£4k payment), bronze (£8k), silver (£12k), gold (£15k) or platinum (£20k).

Secondly, Club Academy Scotland payments are based on each club’s academy status, which can be found here – clubs are categorised as performance level, performance (progressive) level, or elite level, and payments range from £24k to £125k. In the case of the four Fife clubs, whose youth development programmes are delivered together through the Fife Elite Academy at the performance level, this payment will be shared.

In addition, the SPFL announced today they were making early payment of amounts due to be paid to SPFL clubs in April. The top three in the Premiership – Celtic, Rangers and Motherwell – will receive £395,000 plus VAT, and the rest of the top-flight clubs will get £157,500 plus VAT. The payments dip significantly down the divisions. Championship clubs are due to be paid £26,500 plus VAT, League One clubs £2,700 plus VAT and League Two clubs £1,350 plus VAT.

The next SPFL payments to clubs are the final end-of-season rewards for league placings, but it is currently unclear when those will be paid because of the continuing uncertainty over when the season will actually end – and how.


The priority during the football shutdown must be for the health and safety of everyone at our clubs, but it is important that our clubs are still there when the shutdown ends. Every club will be impacted financially by this, and we hope that all of them will survive. Please do not underestimate the scale of the challenge they face in still being there for us. The financial support from the Scottish FA and SPFL will help clubs greatly, but will not be enough on its own to ensure the survival of our clubs. We can all play our part in this, by helping them wherever we can just now, and filling the stands when football eventually resumes.

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