Rangers hopes of SPFL escape take hit as Atlantic League looks doomed
Photo by Willie Vass/Pool via Getty Images

Rangers hopes of SPFL escape take hit as Atlantic League looks doomed

Norwegian Premier League chief executive Leif Overland has poured cold water on any hopes Rangers had of escaping Scotland via a proposed Atlantic League – although he admitted the JP Morgan-backed plan “must be taken seriously.”

The proposal would have seen Rangers, Celtic, Aberdeen, Hearts and Hibs join the league alongside clubs from Sweden, Denmark, Norway and the Republic of Ireland with promotion and relegation allowing the likes of Kilmarnock and Motherwell to join the division in the future.

Rangers look like they’ll need to stick with the SPFL for now (Photo by Rob Casey/SNS Group via Getty Images)

With broadcasting rights reportedly valued at £350million, the league would have provided a potential boost for clubs but the Norwegians appear to prefer sticking with the current format and trying to progress in UEFA’s continental competitions.

One of the other hurdles is the different footballing calendars used across the various countries with some using the same winter schedule as Scotland and others playing summer football.

Overland doesn’t rule it out completely but it doesn’t seem that an Atlantic League will be happening any time soon.

“We received a proposal about the Atlantic League and we have discussed it with my colleagues in Sweden and Denmark,” Overland said [Daily Record]

“We do not consider it very likely for the league to become a reality and therefore we have not spent a lot of time working on the proposal.

“We haven’t rejected the idea completely, but our position is that our league and cups are more important and we want to make a comeback in Europe through UEFA’s competitions.

” UEFA have shown they are very good at building new projects and I understand they have great positivity about their new Europa Conference League

“From what I have learned, it seems JP Morgan are involved in the investment and with good financing like that, the proposal must be taken seriously.

Ibrox won’t be hosting Atlantic League games in the near future (Photo by Rob Casey/SNS Group via Getty Images)

“But I think it’s unlikely to be a good audience project because of the teams involved and the biggest challenge would be finding room in the football calendar. Some of these leagues play in the summer and some in the winter too, so it would be extremely challenging.”

A historic Ibrox tradition will need to change in 2021 as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic