First Minister announces gradual lifting of suspension

First Minister announces gradual lifting of suspension

Tuesday 2 March 2021

The Scottish FA welcomes news from the First Minister that Scottish Women’s Premier League 1 and SPFL League One and Two can return to football activity immediately.

The parameters under which that return is allowed follows discussions between the Scottish FA and representatives of each league and based on the current SPFL Premiership and Championship Joint Response Group Protocols, including a requirement to undertake PCR testing once per week.

Scottish Women’s Football Premier League 2, Highland League, Lowland League, East, West & South of Scotland Leagues, Scottish Junior FA Leagues and the North Caledonian League all remain under temporary suspension and their return to football activity will be reviewed in line with the Scottish Government’s road map out of the COVID-19 crisis.

We will continue to liaise with representatives of those leagues in the coming weeks to establish appropriate return to football protocols.

The Scottish Cup has also been given approval to resume, with all clubs in the competition given permission to participate subject to compliance with PCR testing requirements. Revised Scottish Cup fixture dates will be announced as soon as possible.

The SPFL and SWF will also update on the respective league fixture schedules in due course.

Rod Petrie, Scottish FA President: “We are pleased that the First Minister has again recognised the importance of football in Scotland. The decision to temporarily suspend parts of the professional game played by predominantly part-time teams was not an easy one to take. None the less, given the sharp rise in infection rates caused by new strains of the virus at the start of the year, it was the right thing to do to assist the national effort to reduce its prevalence during lockdown.

“The preparatory work undertaken with representatives of affected leagues and their commitment to the inclusion of weekly PCR testing, has given ministers the confidence to permit the return of SWPL 1 and SPFL League One and Two.

“While we are pleased to see the return of these leagues, there remain significant numbers unable to return to play, including the remaining levels of the professional pyramid, elite youth football, club youth football and our amateur and grassroots clubs across both the male and female game.

“We are acutely aware of the desire within those levels of football to return to playing football and we will continue to work with the Scottish Government to ensure they are able to as soon as it is safe to do so.”

Mairi Gougeon, Minister for Public Health and Sport: “We are aware of the importance of football, at all levels, to many people in Scotland and I’m happy that we have been able to work closely with the Scottish FA to allow the resumption of some further football activity – starting with SPFL Leagues 1 and 2, SWPL1 and clubs still in this season’s Scottish Cup.

“This could only happen alongside enhanced measures to keep everyone safe, including mandatory weekly COVID PCR tests for all players and staff.

“We continue to discuss with the Scottish FA and other stakeholders to ensure football at all levels can resume as soon as it is safe to do so.”

Suspension of Football Update – 1 March

Suspension of Football Update – 1 March

Monday 1 March 2021

As outlined at the weekend by the National Clinical Director for Scotland, Professor Jason Leitch, the Scottish FA has been in regular dialogue with the Scottish Government since the temporary suspension of football was implemented on January 12.

This suspension was approved by the Board of the Scottish FA against a backdrop of increased positive cases for COVID-19 nationwide caused by new strains of the virus.

Following a meeting with the Minister for Public Health Sport and Wellbeing, Mairi Gougeon, a temporary suspension of all football was agreed, encompassing all predominantly part-time tiers of Scottish professional football: SPFL League One, SPFL League Two, Scottish Women’s Football Premier Leagues 1 & 2, Highland League, Lowland League, East, West & South of Scotland Leagues, Scottish Junior FA Leagues and the North Caledonian League.

Since then, a series of discussions have taken place via video conference with all leagues affected by the suspension, to establish the measures and protocols under which each might resume their competitions. This information has been shared with the Scottish Government and, while it has been positively received, we await a final decision from Ministers.

Rod Petrie, Scottish FA President: “We are grateful to all leagues, clubs and participants affected by the temporary suspension for their patience and understanding during this period of uncertainty. They have played their part in keeping the nation safe and restricting the potential spread of the virus.

“I would also like to thank the representatives from those leagues and clubs, who have been proactive and collaborative in giving their input into safe and sustainable plans for a to return to competition.

“These plans have already been discussed with government officials. We look forward to hearing when and in what circumstances those leagues which have been suspended can return to training and, ultimately, to playing.”

Fingers crossed

Peterhead manager Jim McInally is hoping to hear good news this week over football returning in SPFL League 1 and 2. The leagues outside of the Premiership and Championship have been suspended since January 9 due to covid issues however it is expected that a way ahead will be announced this week after talks between football bodies and the Scottish Government.

Jim said: “We will need a few weeks to get match ready so every day that passes makes it more difficult to play out the agreed 27 game season so it would be great to get news soon. There have been a number of suggestions over how we bring the season to a conclusion and hopefully over the next few days we will find out how that will happen.”

“Our players are dealing with the uncertainty well and I have to thank the senior members of our squad for ensuring that everyone stays in contact and that if anyone needs a bit of extra support they know where to go.”

50/50 Draw today

WE KNOW YOU WANT TO!

Yes folks it’s another Saturday without football, we’re missing bracing the force 9 gales at Balmoor, we’re missing the swirling wind, and we’re even missing that incessant banging on the advertising boards by “you know who!”

However, it’s not all doom and gloom, you can still experience the joy of winning a cash prize to help fund your endless supply of hand sanitizer and face masks by participating in our weekly Virtual 50/50 Draw, but remember, you only have until 12 noon today to buy your tickets.

To participate couldn’t be simpler, just click on the link below!We know you want to…So go on, go on, go on…….and Good Luck!

https://www.peterheadfc.org/virtual-weekly-50-50-draw/

Good news at last for Gary

Good news at last for Gary

Peterhead manager Jim McInally was pleased to advise that midfielder Gary Fraser has not suffered a second anterior cruciate injury in his career and that the 26-year-old could be back in action at the start of next season. 

The former Hamilton Accies, Bolton Wanderers, Partick Thistle, Forfar and Cowdenbeath player crumpled to the ground in a game against Montrose 3 days before Christmas and there were fears that Fraser faced a lengthy spell out. 

Understanding the full extent of the problem was delayed because of the amount of swelling around the injured knee and covid-19 restrictions however Fraser was informed this week that he had in fact suffered a dislocation. 

McInally said: “We are pleased with the news. It has taken a bit of time to get there, and there were fears that it was more serious than it is, but it looks like Gary will be back after the summer.” 

“His dislocation was not known to anyone at the time as his kneecap popped back into place almost instantly. He was in a bit of pain, and has missed two months of the season, however we can now start working on getting him ready for the new campaign.” 

Joint Response Group update

Tuesday 23 February 2021

Response to Scottish Government road map out of lockdown

The Joint Response Group notes the First Minister’s road map out of lockdown outlined at Holyrood today.

We await further clarification from ministers in the coming days on the implications for Scottish football at all levels, including leagues and clubs currently under the Scottish FA suspension and the wider grassroots game.

We will provide a more detailed update when ministers outline the road map for affected areas of Scottish football.

The JRG is committed to working with government to ensure the national game is primed to return within the ‘progressive easing’ timeline announced today.