Decision on East of Scotland League next week

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THE make-up of what remains of the East of Scotland League is set to become clearer over the next week.

Uncertainty surrounds the East Seniors after it was decimated by the loss of more than a third of its 26 teams to the newly-formed Lowland League.

Last season, there was a 12-team Premier Division and a 14-team First Division in the East of Scotland set-up, but nine of those sides – seven from the Premier Division and two from the First – were admitted to the Lowland League earlier this week.

This leaves only 17 clubs, although Hibs ‘B’ were admitted a few weeks ago, meaning there are a minimum of 18 teams set to be involved in the new campaign. Numbers could be swelled, however, as Lowland League quartet Spartans, Gala Fairydean Rovers, Edinburgh City and Stirling University are all considering fielding a second team in the Seniors.

The East of Scotland member clubs, including those who are entering the Lowland League, will throw ideas around at a board meeting tonight.

Then on Monday, the Lowland League clubs are due to have their first meeting at Whitehill’s Ferguson Park. Among the issues on the agenda will be which of the East of Scotland cup competitions the Lowland League sides will compete in. The remaining East of Scotland sides will then have a special EGM next Thursday, where they will decide the format of the league and vote on which new teams will be admitted.

East of Scotland league chairman Tom Allison said: “I think one 18-team league would be too big, and ten and eight-team leagues won’t make a lot of sense, but I think we’ll have enough teams coming in to keep two leagues.”