MSP presses for detail on football funding

David Stewart MSP.

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Highlands and Islands Labour MSP David Stewart has tabled questions in the Scottish Parliament seeking clarification on when government Covid funding will be open for sports applications, and what the process will be.

A £55 million funding package was announced last week by the Scottish Government to help sports clubs tackle the void of lost revenue caused by the pandemic.

A total of £20 million is being made available to football clubs in the Scottish Premiership, with £10 million being made available for clubs at every other level of the game.

The MSP, who is chairman of Inverness Caledonian Thistle Trust, said: ‘Football clubs up and down the country have been hit hard by the implications of Covid-19 restrictions and I was pleased that the Health and Sport Committee agreed to my request to hold an inquiry into this. As part of that inquiry, Minister for Sport Joe Fitzpatrick gave evidence at the committee last Tuesday.

‘While the meeting was very helpful, the detail of how and when the funding and grants will be made available is not yet known and I know clubs at every level of the game are keen to know when and how they can apply for the help being offered.

‘As an avid football fan, I know just how perilously close some clubs are to going under and we need to make sure this money gets to those who need it without delay.

He continued: ‘Football is in the very fabric of communities up and down Scotland and loss of gate sales and hospitality revenue has hit clubs hard.

‘We must get that help out to the clubs immediately to secure the future of the game, at every level, in Scotland.’