Gothenburg Great John McMaster is confident the Red Army will safeguard Aberdeen’s future through the coronavirus crisis.
However, the Pittodrie legend fears some Scots clubs will go under as the complete shutdown of Scottish football takes its toll.
As Scottish clubs, from Premiership to part-time, face an uncertain future, McMaster believes it will be fan power that will be the saviour for many.
Yet he fears even supporters may not be able to save some clubs if the shutdown continues long term.
Aberdeen chairman Dave Cormack recently warned they face a bleak financial future with losses of £5 million during the lockdown.
The Dons had hoped to claim on their business interruption policy during the coronavirus crisis.
However, the club were informed their protection against a loss of earnings due to a pandemic will cease at the end of next month.
McMaster said: “The saviours will be the supporters. The whole of football is at a crossroads and the coronavirus situation is a danger to all sports.
“It is a huge problem for all football clubs and there will unfortunately be some casualties as some clubs go under.
“However, the saviours will be the supporters.
“Whether that is in Aberdeen, Glasgow, Angus, Ayrshire – everywhere.
“Supporters will always stick with their clubs and make sure they survive.
Our Northern Goal podcast panel thinks Dave Cormack’s open approach at Aberdeen was the right call:
“That will happen from the Premiership all the way down to the lower leagues, the lot.
“Aberdeen supporters have already shown that by the way they have responded recently.”
Pittodrie chairman Cormack recently warned of a bleak financial future if the football shutdown is extended to July.
Aberdeen’s outgoings are £1.2m per month and there will be no income due to loss of gate receipts, corporate hospitality and season ticket sales for 2020-21 due to the lockdown and uncertainty over the future.
The club suffered a further financial blow this week with confirmation their insurance protection against a loss of earnings due to a pandemic will cease from the end of next month.
The club were informed by their broker that wording in relation to the coronavirus outbreak will be removed upon renewal on April 30.
Cormack recently called for supporters to help the club by purchasing season tickets and signing up for the fans’ contribution scheme AberDNA. Fans rallied behind the club.
Greenock-based McMaster has helped out local club Morton.
He said: “Dave Cormack was open with the financial situation and it is good he let the supporters know.
“The saving grace through all this will be the supporters who will keep the clubs alive.
“Morton Club Together have around 400 people and I put £10 into that every month.
“I also put the same into Greenock Juniors.
“That is the sort of thing supporters can do if they can afford it, although people are also facing their own financial problems.
“There are more than 250,000 people in Aberdeenshire. Some Aberdeen supporters might be able to give the club £5, £10 or £20 a month during this.”
A series of meetings to discuss the urgent issues involving all 42 SPFL clubs during the Covid-19 crisis took place yesterday.
It is understood no decision over finalising leagues has been made and some forecasts are predicting the shutdown of football could last until September.
The SPFL are also attempting to ensure commercial contracts for next season are secure.
Despite the predictions of £5m losses, Cormack has said wage cuts are not inevitable at the club during the coronavirus shutdown – after fans rallied round to support the Dons in their hour of need.
Cormack said: “Our goal is to pull all the data together, not make a knee-jerk decision (on wage cuts).
“What we want to do – and we’re working on it right now – is take a view on what the likely position is over the next period, when the league season might start as well and look at our cash position.
“Only then will we take a view as to what, if anything, we will ask of our staff to help us out over this period. But we’re not there yet.
“We’re still pulling the numbers together, calling sponsors, seasonal dining box holders.
“You’ve seen the fans rally round as well to buy season tickets just now. We need to pull all of that together over the coming week and then take a look at it.”
Cormack insists clarity from the SPFL and SFA on how the season will end is crucial.
He said: “We’re looking for clarity, whether that be on the economic support side or, in our case, the insurance side and when we’re going to start the new season.
“I think a lot of that comes down to Uefa. If Uefa, for example, mandate that all domestic leagues need to be finished by the end of June, that makes the decision fairly easy for people.
“None of us can see any games being played by the end of June.
“Ideally all of us want to play out the season – it’s the right thing to do – but we’re faced with a tough situation.
“Uefa, who have got to be thinking about the Champions League and Europa League for next season, need to make a decision that domestic leagues have to be finished by a certain stage.
“I think that’s a more likely catalyst for helping us to all make a call.”