Up front: When planning is at fault

It might be the off-season, with little being decided on the pitch in January, but this could turn out to be one of the most crucial weeks in the history of the modern game.

Two meetings in the space of four days could establish the way Rugby League is to be structured over the coming years.

The stakes couldn’t be higher. The crunch is that whatever is decided has to provide the best outcome for the sport.

A separate management and board of directors for Super League makes apparent sense. Not many would disagree that such is the quality of our game, it should be attracting much more commercial investment than it has over the past two years. If the means to releasing some of Rugby League’s potential is a semi-independent Super League, then so be it, although there must be a way of ensuring Super League clubs can take more responsibility for driving their own competition within the umbrella of the Rugby Football League.

The second great decision that could be made this week is whether to move to the much discussed two-twelves, three-eights model.

We can’t deny that as an outline plan such a structure is a clever idea.

But as in everything in life, the devil is in the detail.

There has to be reservations purely from the point of clubs selling season tickets, threatening to negatively affect income streams, instead of increasing them, which is the point of any re-structure.

And just how will it look at the end of 2015? The second tier of eight when the leagues split up will involve four fully professional Super League teams, possibly two that were professional up until the end of this year when they will be relegated, and two more that are presumably part-time, although the latest whisper is that plans are afoot to give extra funds to some current Championship clubs to help them have full-time players.

It will be fascinating to see just which clubs are deemed worthy. And which are not.

It all appears to be a case of making it up as you go along when potential problems are pointed out.

Perhaps it would be better for the bosses at Red Hall to come up with a better plan. And this time they might think it through.