Wednesday 26th January 2022

THE Scottish Professional Football League (SPFL) has announced that cinch Championship and cinch League 1 clubs have voted to increase to five the number of substitutes allowed in league matches for the remainder of the season.

The SPFL circulated written resolutions to clubs in both divisions asking whether they wished to continue with three substitutes or to increase the number to five.

The resolutions have now been passed and clubs will now also be permitted to name a bench of up to nine players.

This change will help with the congested fixture schedule, given the possibility of postponements due to weather conditions or Covid-19, and will also improve player welfare.

The rule, which will take effect from this weekend’s cinch Championship and cinch League 1 games, will now be in place for all league matches for the remainder of the season.

Earlier this month, cinch Premiership clubs voted to introduce the rule. The use of up to five substitutes is already permitted in cinch League 2.

An SPFL spokesman said: “Discussions have been ongoing in recent weeks with cinch Championship and cinch League 1 clubs about the potential rule change.

“As a members’ organisation, it is important that clubs in each division are able to make decisions on issues like this for themselves.”

FIFA has allowed each league to determine its own rules regarding substitutes since the Covid-19 pandemic began.

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