20-year loans to help prop up Premiership clubs
Clubs are coping without attendance money (pic: SNS Group)
Scottish Premiership clubs are to be offered interest-free loans from the government to help them through the Covid-pandemic.
The Scottish Football Association is close to agreeing a deal with the Scottish government that will see each offered a loan of about £1.6m from a £20m pot.
Clubs would be given up to 20 years to repay the loan, with repayments due from next year at the earliest.
The Covid-19 crisis has starved clubs of income from supporters and hospitality which has pushed some Premiership clubs close to financial difficulties.
SFA chief executive Ian Maxwell is understood to have negotiated the zero interest deal with Finance Secretary Kate Forbes.
Championship clubs have already been given a one-off grant of £500,000, with League One clubs getting £150,000 each and £100,000 for League Two clubs.
Other sports have received a share of £55m from the government.
Rugby union was handed £20m, comprising £5m loans and £15m grants, while ice rinks and horse racing got £2m each. Another £1m is split among other sports.