Glentoran manager Mick McDermott has suggested that Danske Bank Premiership games could be played at three or four stadiums to accommodate more fans when next season starts.
The Northern Ireland Football League (NIFL) has set a provisional date of October 17 for the start of the new Premiership and Championship seasons.
But health experts are concerned at the resurgence of the Covid-19 virus and clubs insist the domestic game is not sustainable unless sufficient numbers of spectators are allowed to attend games.
Clubs argued that they needed up to 50% capacity to cover costs, including players' wages, but even that figure seems optimistic with the virus still a significant health risk across Northern Ireland.
On the issue of spectators attending games, league organisers said the start date is subject to "the safe and viable return of spectators to grounds in line with the NI Executive restrictions and the agreement of the respective league management committees".
The Irish FA were able to accommodate 500 fans at the Irish Cup final last month, but that was at the international stadium where strict protocols including social distancing were enforced.
Uefa insisted that this month's Nations League games had to be played behind closed doors and clubs fear the NI Executive will only allow very limited crowds in October.
Larne have been able to plan for 600 fans for pre-season friendlies but there is concern that no away supporters will be able to attend games.
That would be a blow to clubs with a big travelling support, particularly Linfield and Glentoran.
McDermott believes some creative thinking may be required to ensure the Premiership matches go ahead with as many fans as possible.
"I think we do need to be creative," said the Glens chief. "Sitting back and thinking we are going to have a league of 38 games with home and away matches may not be an option.
"We need to look at other solutions. If we can have 50% capacity, at The Oval that's around 3,000 fans, and there are other grounds that can accommodate higher numbers like Windsor Park and the Ballymena Showgrounds.
"Do we designate three or four major stadiums to accommodate games? If we are working with crowd restrictions then you can obviously accommodate more supporters at those venues.
"The league may have to designate a few stadiums and play all the games there in a safe environment. Is that doable or even necessary?
"Can we find a way which allows clubs to generate more money? You would think more fans means more income.
"There's the cost of cleaning and sanitising 12 grounds every week. Should we reduce that to three or four?
"We've seen European games played in Lisbon and four German cities and that's because they have created a bubble aimed at minimising the risk of Covid-19."
McDermott says the fans must be part of football's return, for the sake of the game and the supporters.
"The whole debate around the sharing of the European money emerged because of the difficulties presented to all clubs by this pandemic and now we can only be hopeful the league will start in October," he added. "It will start with reduced fans and we need to have them in the stadiums because the game is part of the community and it can't prosper without supporters.
"Football is a big part of people's lives and the more people we can welcome through the doors the better.
"Clubs may not get the 50% capacity they hoped for but the fans deserve to see the game return.
"If the supporters cannot return in big numbers the clubs are going to need more financial help, that's the reality.
"We don't have big television deals and if we don't make the right decisions there is a real possibility that some clubs will disappear.
"Or will we go back to amateur football with younger players playing until we rebuild the game?"