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Rangers manager Walter Smith suggests 18-team SPL

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Smith would favour 18-team SPL

Walter Smith believes an 18-team league would benefit Scotland's top flight and avoid the "embarrassment" of a split.

The Scottish Premier League's current format involves splitting in two after 33 games and each bank of six teams playing each other once thereafter.

The Rangers boss said: "It's an awkward situation our country finds itself in.

"The ideal set up is to have an 18-team league. If we could find a way of working towards that, I would be in favour of that."

He added: "It comes into line with all the other European teams and means we don't have the embarrassment of a split with teams finishing seventh on more points than teams who finish sixth."

BBC Scotland learned earlier in the week that the SPL was looking into the possibility of expansion and a new 16-team format is one being discussed

I would like to see a change. What that change is, I'm not quite sure.

Rangers manager
Walter Smith

.

"Sixteen teams only gives you 30 games really, doesn't it? Although there has always been a call for fewer matches," added Smith.

"I heard (Hearts manager) Jim Jefferies and (Motherwell manager) Craig Brown both state recently that playing each other four times is not right and they feel there should be a change.

"I would agree with that, I would like to see a change. What that change is, I'm not quite sure.

"I don't know whether a lot of teams quite like playing each other four times because it means they play the Old Firm twice at home and that gets them a level of revenue they would maybe lose otherwise.

"It's something I would like to see but is very difficult for us to achieve because we have gone down that road before and felt we needed change."



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see also
Rangers 3-1 St Mirren
06 Mar 10 |  Scottish Premier
SPL clubs favour expansion plans
04 Mar 10 |  Scottish Premier
SPL ponders expansion & play-offs
03 Mar 10 |  Scottish Premier
SPL expansion plan given approval
19 Feb 09 |  Scottish Premier


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