WELSH PREMIER FOOTBALL

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SCOTTISH Professional Football League officials want at least two Irish League sides and two from Wales to participate in a new-look competition as early as next summer.

Northern Ireland Football League managing director Andrew Johnston will attend a meeting in Glasgow tomorrow to learn more about the ambitious plans, according to the Belfast Telegraph. 

Uefa are being briefed about the proposals today which incorporate an expanded competition featuring Irish League and Welsh teams along with clubs from the Scottish Championship, Scottish League One and Scottish League Two as well as Under-20 sides from the Scottish Premier League.

The SPFL had hoped English Premier League clubs would allow their youth sides to participate but they are likely to enter the Johnstone's Paint Trophy in England.

Uefa have allowed international club competitions to proceed before such as the Baltic Cup featuring clubs from Estonia, Latvia, Finland and Lithuania.

At the moment, BBC Alba pay around £100,000 a year to televise the Challenge Cup tournament but SPFL chiefs hope to raise similar sums from Welsh broadcasters and BBC Northern Ireland.

Dwindling prize money and problems over fixture scheduling contributed to the Setanta Cup's downfall and Irish clubs will be wary of similar issues threatening to derail this proposal but for now they are giving the initiative serious consideration, the Telegraph says.

But there has been no public confirmation from the Football Association of Wales that they are considering the proposal.

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21 October 2017

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