Coleraine chairman Colin McKendry believes a co-ordinated approach from local councils across Northern Ireland is critical to fans being allowed inside stadiums for the start of the new Irish League season.
he countdown is well and truly on to October 17 when the Danske Bank Premiership campaign is scheduled to begin but big decisions still have to be made which will have a major impact on clubs' futures.
Should no fans be allowed into grounds due to Covid-19, there are fears that some sides could go under if they do not receive financial aid from the government or the Irish FA.
Discussions are ongoing between the football authorities and government departments, with local councils key to the numbers that could be allowed to attend league games next month and moving forward.
In pre-season friendlies, some Irish League teams have been running trials whereby a limited number of fans have watched games under Covid-19 restrictions. McKendry believes that experience should give clubs confidence for what lies ahead.
The Bannsiders chairman said: "It is crucial that we get support from our local councils on the issue of fans coming through the gates.
"Spikes in the number of cases and things like that are out of our control but the running of our football clubs is within our control and if councils could clearly state we are allowed 35% of our capacity or whatever that figure will be, I believe we would know how to make everything as safe as possible for people coming in and out of grounds.
"We have had trial runs now with a limited number of fans being allowed in to pre-season friendlies and I believe we could make it work when the season begins.
"It is whether local authorities would allow that to work and obviously we would need central government advice, help and direction on that. I'm not sure it would work if one council said you are allowed a certain percentage in and another council said they would allow a different percentage. This situation requires joined up thinking from all parties involved. That is critical. We need a clear directive if we are going to get fans in.
"Should fans be allowed in, we would all be given guidelines and if you were found not to be following those guidelines then you could be held accountable. We are all running our clubs in a professional manner and would take advice from the health authorities and I feel the confidence gained from running the trial games in terms of sanitising and stewarding would help us going forward.
"If we are not allowed fans in, we are going to need financial assistance. It's as simple as that because football clubs are businesses that cannot operate without income because expenses are still going out. Match day income is what the majority of clubs exist on.
"The Task Force set up for football here is putting together a comprehensive document from the NIFL Board, ably assisted by others, to present to government and hopefully clubs will get something on the back of that.
"Making sure our clubs keep going is not just vital for the clubs but also for football fans and their health and wellbeing because football is so important in their lives. I feel it would be money well spent by the government or the IFA, Uefa or Fifa."