Super League clubs are set to vote on the size of the competition for the 2015 season next week.
The issue of re-structuring the whole game has been on the backburner since before the World Cup, when a revolt by some clubs forced the postponement of an EGM supposed to outline the future for 2015 and beyond.
Back in July, the clubs had agreed at the RFL’s AGM to reduce Super League from 14 to 12 when presented with the publicised three options for the game re-structuring.
However, the size of the top flight is back on the agenda, and six clubs walked out of a meeting back in October to prevent a vote taking place on the issue. Nine of the 14 current clubs must be present for a vote to take place.
Whatever the outcome next Friday, the RFL has guaranteed that by Friday January 24, all clubs in Super League and the Championships will know what they have got to play for in 2014.
If no agreement can be reached between the clubs, then Super League will remain as 14 teams for 2015, with two teams being relegated to the Championship at the end of 2014 and replaced by two promoted teams. Should that happen, then the bottom four teams in the Championship would then be relegated to Championship 1.
It is believed that a deduction to 12 teams remains the favoured option of most of the clubs, and is likely to be forced through.
Discussions will then centre around whether to approve the controversial split option, which involves two leagues of 12 splitting in to three leagues of eight for the final part of the season, or to revert to the one-up/one-down system that was in place prior to the introduction of licensing in 2008.
The return of promotion and relegation has already been guaranteed from the end of 2014.