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Hearts want a fairer split of SPL television revenue

Hearts' Tynecastle Stadium
Hearts remain to be totally convinced of the SPL's plans

Hearts will push for a fairer distribution of broadcast revenue for all members when the Scottish Premier League clubs meet at Hampden on Monday.

They are also keen to discuss the reinstatement of the reserve league.

No final vote on league structure will take place, with the top-10 set-up favoured by the SPL's strategic review group failing to enthuse all clubs.

Instead, the clubs will discuss their preferences for change before making final choices with their own boards.

SPL chairman Ralph Topping and chief executive Neil Doncaster travelled to Lithuania on Thursday to discuss league changes with Hearts majority shareholder Vladimir Romanov.

The duo would like to see two SPL leagues of 10 teams, arguing that this would generate the greatest revenue for the member clubs.

However, after meeting Topping and Doncaster Hearts have stopped short of a full endorsement of their plans.

Speaking after the meeting in Lithuania, Hearts director Sergejus Fedotovas told Hearts News: "It was good to meet with Neil Doncaster and Ralph Topping and the talks which we had were both productive and constructive.

"Hearts plans to fully play its part in the development of Scottish football and we are fully supportive of a move for change for the good of the game."

Scepticism emerged from clubs including Dundee United, Inverness, Kilmarnock and St Mirren over the proposals following a meeting earlier this month.

And Hearts reportedly remained unconvinced by the plans which included the introduction of play-offs, an earlier start to the season and a winter shutdown.

A 16-team top league, favoured by many fans, was dismissed by the SPL as they say it would mean clubs would lose around £1m per year in revenue on match days and from television.

But clubs will debate the merits of a 14-team league, where teams would play each other home and away before the league would split into two.

Whatever the split format - 7/7, 8/6, 6/8 - it would signal the end of the unpopular fixture imbalances that have been thrown up in recent seasons since teams would play their opponents twice each either side of the division.

The SPL management hope they reach an agreement in principle at the meeting without pushing for a formal vote.

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see also
SPL clubs agree on top-10 format
17 Jan 11 |  Scottish Premier
SPL scraps vote on top-10 format
09 Jan 11 |  Scottish Premier
Fans discuss top 10 plan with SPL
06 Jan 11 |  Scottish Premier
St Mirren would prefer SPL of 14
06 Jan 11 |  Scottish Premier
Top 10 will raise TV money - SPL
05 Jan 11 |  Scottish Premier
SPL moves towards 10-team format
04 Jan 11 |  Scottish Premier
McLeish review backs two-tier SPL
16 Dec 10 |  Scotland
SPL to consider radical shake-up
12 Dec 10 |  Scottish Premier

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