The Scottish Government has been urged to find a “workable solution” that would end the ban on amateur football matches.
Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard has written to First Minister Nicola Sturgeon to plead with her to consider extending exemptions.
It is estimated that 35,000 registered amateur players have been stopped from playing games in the central belt alone, during the coronavirus crisis.
However, at the same time competitive professional and semi-professional football has been permitted in Scotland.
The current restrictions have created a two-tiered football system in Scotland…”
Mr Leonard said: “Consideration should be given to finding a workable solution that allows the amateur football leagues to safely carry out games.”
He added: “The current restrictions have created a two-tiered football system in Scotland, where semi-professional football teams and players are given exemptions to carry on competing in their leagues, whilst amateur teams are not.
“As I understand it semi-pro teams follow exactly the same Covid procedures as teams in the amateur league and ‘gatherings’ are similar in size.
“Football remains Scotland’s most popular sport, it helps many people, players and fans, to focus their minds and efforts of something that provides a lot of happiness, that is why having a blanket ban does not work.”
A Scottish Government spokesman said: “We recognise the benefits sport brings to physical and mental health as well as the key role sports clubs play in local communities.
“This is why, in level three areas, we have provided an exemption for under-18s to continue to play football.
“We understand restrictions on adult activity will be disappointing, however they are absolutely necessary to suppress the transmission of the virus in high prevalence areas.
“We will continue to review our position and provide updates when appropriate.”