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Scottish Football League

The Scottish Football League is a league of football (soccer) teams in Scotland.

The league was formed in the 1890s to provide the growing number of football clubs in the country with a more consistent fixture list. In it's initial season the league was won jointly between Rangers and Dumbarton[?].

The league proved to be highly sucessful and soon a second division was added from which clubs could be promoted to the first division (although this was done by a ballot of clubs until the early 1920s when automatic promotion and relegation between the two divisions was introduced.

The two divisional structure existed until the mid 1970s when the league decided to split into three divisions (Premier Division, First Division and Second Division). This was prompted by a desire to ensure greater numbers of fixtures between the top clubs and generate greater revenue for them. The league had also experienced an alarming drop in attendances and it was felt a new set-up might stimulate greater interest.

This three divisional structure (of 38 clubs) existed until 1994, when the league once again reorganised itself into four divisions of 10 clubs (Inverness Caledonian Thistle[?] and Ross County[?] were elected into the league. Again the league changed in 1998 when the Premier Division clubs fuelled by a desire to keep a greater share of television monies being raised by the game split from the league to form the Scottish Premier League (SPL). When the SPL decided to expand from ten to twelve clubs in 2000 the league elected two new clubs, Peterhead[?] and Elgin City[?].

Presently the league consists of three divisions, each with ten clubs in them:

  • First Division
  • Second Division
  • Third Division

Each season the winners of the First Division are eligible to be promoted to the Scottish Premier League providing their stadium meets certain criteria.

Rangers have won the greatest number of league titles in the league's history, with 50 national championships (including SPL titles) to their name.

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