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Still work to be done for crowds to return to Borough Briggs, warns Elgin chairman Tatters

Elgin City chairman Graham Tatters.
Elgin City chairman Graham Tatters.

Elgin City chairman Graham Tatters insists supporters will not return to Borough Briggs with the flick of a switch.

The Black and Whites have been given permission to host crowds of up to 300 spectators at home games by the Scottish government, after Moray was placed in tier one of coronavirus restrictions.

Elgin are now in discussions with Scottish football’s joint response group to ratify for operational plans for the safe return of crowds.

Tatters insists the process could take time and he does not expect crowds to be in place for tomorrow’s League Two match against Queen’s Park or Tuesday’s Betfred Cup tie against Ross County.

Tatters said: “A lot of people think it’s a case of flicking a switch and crowds will be allowed in. I wish it was that simple.

“Everyone had been rumouring and saying it was going to happen but the joint response group update was the first we knew we were getting crowds in.

“Ross County have done their trial already so they have all their procedures in place, now we’ve got to try and make sure we meet the criteria.

“We are talking to the SPFL, who will give us some idea of what we have got to do and then we will see if we can implement that.

“It’s going to be challenging. I don’t think we will make Saturday’s game, and probably not Tuesday either.

“We will make every effort we can to make it happen, but it depends on what the criteria and protocols are and we’re not sure at the moment.”

Tatters says any return of crowds to matches must be done safely, with the Elgin chairman determined not to counteract the efforts of the local population during the pandemic.

Tatters added: “We want it to happen – we desperately want crowds in.

“It has got to be safe for everybody. The seating area at our ground covers the red zone and amber zone. We will only be able to put fans in three places where they will have to stand.

“We will need to sort the segregation across the far side which will take us a couple of days.

“Whatever happens, it has got to be right. If something happened and track and trace found we were the club that caused the problem, that’s the last thing we want.

“After everybody has sacrificed so much in Moray to get to tier one, we wouldn’t want to be the team that caused to the problem.

“People in our area have tried to adhere to all the criteria – and we are being rewarded for the sacrifices people have made.

“I just hope we can meet the requirements and get it going as soon as possible.”

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