SAUCHIE Juniors' chairman has warned the Clacks club would only last for “five or six weeks” without fans - as he pleaded with football bosses for financial support. 

Karl Rennie has joined calls for a handout to help teams in Scotland with supporters expected to be banned from stadiums until next year. 

The Reds, who have transformed Beechwood Park to make it Covid-19 safe, believe East of Scotland teams have been “forgotten about” by football chiefs. 

READ MORE: Alloa boss Peter Grant joins calls for welcome back supporters in Scotland

Clubs in the top four divisions in Scotland received a £50,000 grant from businessman James Anderson earlier this year, but so far no one in the lower tiers has been given support. 

"Our biggest attendance last season was 400 people," Rennie told Advertiser Sport. "Our average gate is 150-180, so we could socially distance in the stadium.

“If the league decides we have to continue and have to play, it then becomes a hassle with transport. Not everyone can travel in a bus, it has to be individual cars. You are then paying every player an expense to get there; where’s the money going to come from?

Alloa and Hillfoots Advertiser: It could be some time before fans are allowed back inside Beechwood Park It could be some time before fans are allowed back inside Beechwood Park

“We would only need a fraction of the £50,000 and I reckon £10-15,000 would be enough for us. If we started playing football, we’d be lucky if we could last four or five weeks before we were struggling to pay players.

“If you play without supporters, five or six weeks down the line there might not be a Sauchie.”

Sauchie, who have called on the support of Clackmannanshire and Dunblane MSP Keith Brown, only pay their players when they play a match. 

However, Rennie is clear this will not be sustainable if they are told by league bosses to kick off without supporters next month. 

“I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, we can’t survive without supporters," Rennie added. 

“The club is not sustainable without them and we won’t have money coming in to pay our players without supporters. 

“It’s different if you are part of the SPFL and get a £50k hand out but that stopped at our level and none of us saw it.

“It feels like we are just the forgotten division of this pyramid system and no one cares about us.

“Sauchie relies on the fans and we also rely on the bingo at Sauchie Hall, but the problem is that’s not running now because we can’t get in.

READ MORE: Alloa Athletic chairman Mike Mulraney wants to see fans in Recs

“The club literally has no income apart from the donation pages and our sponsors, who we are continually grateful for backing the club. 

“It’s not just the first team now and we have the academy and a team in the Junior league. There’s the walking football and the kids stuff.

“It’s not just the team we need to worry about but it’s the full team and the full set-up we have worked hard to do.”

If you would like to contact Clackmannanshire and Dunblane MSP Keith Brown to share your support for a return of fans to football grounds, you can do so here: 

Unit 4
Townhead Institute
39 Drysdale Street
FK10 1JA