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SPL bank on more backers.

The Bank of Scotland will today be named as the first sponsors of the Scottish Premier League.

The deal, worth an estimated pounds 5million over four years, is the first major breakthrough for SPL chief executive Roger Mitchell since he took up the post on August 1 last year.

But the amount agreed is clearly still well short of the pounds 10million figure suggested by the big guns as a starting point for potential backers when they announced their breakaway at the end of last season.

And it also falls short of the pounds 10m which was on the table from former Scottish League backers, whisky company Bells, who withdrew because of the uncertainty surrounding the future of the league.

The shortfall has resulted in the SPL bosses trying to attract around half a dozen, so- called sub-sponsors to the Bank of Scotland.

They would put a smaller amount of money into the game for a reduced level of


The set-up will now be known as the Bank of Scotland's Scottish Premier League.

However, now that a sponsor has been found, the big question is - what will their money be used for?

The SPL have said in the past that they hope to earmark some funds specifically for youth development.

What they do with this cash will be a test of that commitment.

The search will continue for other sub-sponsors and also for a backer for the SPL's under- 21 league.

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Title Annotation:Sport
Author:Sinclair, Paul
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Mar 10, 1999
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