MORTON bosses have welcomed an unexpected £50,000 windfall as they brace themselves for another three months without football.

Chief executive Dave MacKinnon says he hopes that the club can begin to plot a way forward and emerge from the coronavirus crisis, with an October restart now looking likely.

They will also receive their cut of philanthropist James Anderson’s £3m donation to the SPFL.

The Hearts benefactor has stepped in to donate over £3m to save clubs left on the brink by the pandemic and subsequent shutdown.

MacKinnon told the Tele: “The donation is welcomed, most definitely.

“We’re still to get the nuts and bolts of it but we think that the grant is being angled towards the impact football has on the community.

"We’re going to work as hard as we can to use it in the right way to get football back in the heart of Inverclyde as soon and as safely as possible.

“We’re going to have to look at things from a health and safety perspective.

"That is going to be a key driver now to getting the stadium fit for purpose - not only for the work that Morton in the Community do but also for when we can welcome fans back through the door.

“We’ve seen it published before as to how much of an impact that community programmes have for clubs in Scotland.

"There was a survey done that showed Ayr’s community programme put around £2.5m back into their area.

“I’d imagine that Morton put a significant amount more back in to Inverclyde, and the plan is for that to continue.

“We will work towards ensuring that the stadium is compliant [to do that] with all the health guidelines set out by the Scottish Government."

The Ton CEO is cautiously optimistic about plans for the Championship to restart in mid-October, with clubs playing games behind closed doors initially and potentially only facing each other three times, rather than four, and taking part in a delayed Betfred Cup.

He said: “If we are starting at the end of October, there’s things that need to be taken into consideration like the Betfred Cup, Scottish Cup and international weekends, when football generally stops.

“There’s a significant amount of work to go into it, but we’ll facilitate as many games as we can.

"Hopefully we can get the nod, because if we can get a target we can figure out season tickets and things like that.

“The Betfred Cup is due to start in October, so it fits in well with the start of the season for us.

"If everything goes to plan, that will start in October followed by the Championship.

“Premier League and Championship clubs will be involved but at this stage I don’t know how many clubs in League One and League Two will participate, because there have been various statements that they don’t want to play unless there are fans present.

“It’s going to be difficult for Leagues One and Two to come to a consensus as it's still open to debate whether they will play, go into hibernation for a period or just try and wait till they can get fans in.

“We’ve worked hard in the Championship to come to an agreement and we’re all happy that we want to start around that time.”