Peterhead chairman Rodger Morrison envisages the Scottish league season ending early because of the coronavirus outbreak.
The Scottish FA and SPFL announced yesterday that the season would be indefinitely suspended in a bid to prevent the spread of the disease in Scotland.
With the decision coming yesterday lunchtime, the picture was not yet clear as to how the remainder of the league season will be structured, if at all.
There will also be the financial strains clubs will be put under without regular match-day income, with wages still to pay and outgoings to be covered.
The Blue Toon were due for one of their bigger travelling supports of the season this afternoon against Raith Rovers, prior to the shutdown. Morrison is not panicking yet but does not envisage the league season resuming.
Morrison said: “We’ll see how long it’s going to be but if it’s obviously going to be the end of the season – I don’t see rationally how they’re going to re-open it when it (coronavirus) hasn’t really set off yet.
“It would be so unfair on so many clubs then if the league were to have a stab at who is going up and going down.
“Is it going to be an extended ban? I think it will have to be. There are so many intangibles. Today we had a full corporate crowd upstairs and 300-400 travelling supporters. It’s a big part of your budget.”
An initial recommendation from the Scottish government on Thursday, announced by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, was for all gatherings of more than 500 to be cancelled if they put a strain on the emergency services.
However, in the wake of the developing pandemic in England, with some players diagnosed or self-isolating and the governing bodies there postponing games, Scotland followed suit.
Peterhead are eighth in League One and have nine games outstanding to complete their season.
Given they are involved in a relegation battle at the foot of the table, they would then await the decision whether the season would be rendered void and resumed again next season.
Morrison plans further dialogue with club staff over the next few days and as all clubs, they are in a wait-and-see scenario.
He added: “We have a meeting planned for Monday to get a clearer picture. It looks as though there’s not going to be anything from the SFA and SPFL. What’s going to cover that extent, as far as players and staff are concerned, if there’s not going to be any income of any kind?
“The problem will be how long is it for? Because a lot of clubs will be without any income and still have wages going out. The two don’t quarter up. We’re not panicking yet but we’ll have to wait and see what happens.”
Fellow north-east side Cove Rangers are sitting top of League Two, with a 13-point lead and eight games remaining. They had been due to face Brechin City this weekend.
Cove chairman Keith Moorhouse insisted they would try to conduct “business as usual” as much as possible and would be awaiting further instructions from governing bodies.
He said: “(We’ve done) nothing too extravagant, what you would expect from any business. We put into place all the guidance that’s been given by the government.
“You don’t want to disrupt people’s lives too much.
“It’ll pretty much be business as usual and wait for instruction from the governing bodies. We’ll oblige and wait to hear for further guidance.
“We were expecting it – the whole world has been wrapped up in it for the last week.
“It’s common sense.”