Old Firm proposal turned down

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Football News

Bolton chairman Phil Gartside's proposals for Celtic and Rangers to join the Premier League may have been killed off but his calls for other changes to England's top flight remain alive.

Other suggestions put forward by Gartside, including having a two-tier league with a smaller top flight and changing the distribution of TV money will now be fed into the league's ongoing strategic review.

In relation to the Old Firm, the campaign for the Scottish clubs to be allowed to join the English top flight is over for good, with Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore saying: "No means no."

The 20 club chairmen overwhelmingly rejected the bid on Thursday, with more than two-thirds voting against the proposal by Bolton chairman Phil Gartside.

Scudamore told BBC Radio Five Live: "The clubs discussed this and as far as Celtic and Rangers are concerned it's a non-starter.

"The clubs constitutionally voted to say we are not going to take this any further.

"We have made a clear and unequivocal statement. No means no - Celtic and Rangers are not coming in."

Gartside's other proposals have not been rejected but will now be part of a wider review of the top flight which will be published next year.

The Bolton chairman had expressed concerns too much money continues to flow into the coffers of the top four clubs. In his annual report, published last week, Gartside made it clear he believed addressing the big differences in income was the league's greatest challenge.

Gartside wrote: "The gap between Premier League revenues and those of the Championship continues to widen and I believe a 'fear factor' is beginning to emerge amongst Premier League clubs outside the top few."

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