IF Premiership clubs are able to associate with the football terrace chant of “We know what we are, we know what we are…” in the coming campaign then they will be on the right track.

Fail to realistically assess where they are in the pecking order and trouble looms.

The tinkering to and mistreatment of the Premiership has been well-documented; the top flight has been a mess, standards have dropped and disillusionment has risen.

But the coming seasons have the chance to make things fun again, and the same applies for the Championship which will be less of a Pontypool procession and more of a tussle in a competitive 14-team league.

Cutting the clubs free from pro rugby and making them the pinnacle of the community game – which surely should include the Welsh Rugby Union reducing some of the criteria demands made to Premiership teams – can allow them to be selfish in a good way.

South Wales Argus: LIVEWIRE: Newport favourite Elliot FrewenLIVEWIRE: Newport favourite Elliot Frewen

There is no messing about, it’s home and away rugby with one up and one down at the end of 22 fixtures.

That combined with cup rugby should be enough games with some club officials feeling that 30 was too many, with fixtures being played on Friday nights before internationals costing money rather than making it.

Sometimes there is the tendency, and I am guilty of this, to focus on what is wrong with the Premiership rather what it good about it, looking at what it doesn’t do rather than what it does.

The coming years, with a settled structure and the introduction of qualification for a competition with Scottish clubs, should allow us to celebrate it for what it is.

Clubs should be able to thrive or at least survive, and key to that is being realistic and sensible, not thinking in the short-term because of the temptation of silverware.

Gwent is down to two teams in the Premiership for 2019/20 and, barring a miracle of Leicester City proportions, neither of them will be lifting the trophy.

That’s not negative, it’s realistic. Ebbw Vale and Newport simply do not have the financial muscle to compete with those that will be at the very top of the table.

The Steelmen and Black and Ambers, who finished fifth and seventh respectively last season, will be fine teams with the ability to beat any of their Premiership rivals on any given day, but consistency will be their issue over a 22-game campaign.

Ebbw and Newport are proud, famous clubs and their officials realise the importance of thinking long-term.

They must cut their cloth accordingly and if that means missing out on a player, or asking them to head to pastures new because of financial constraints, then so be it.

What is the point of splashing the cash when somebody else has more financial clout?

Greg Woods or Ty Morris could push the boat out for an individual but the reality is that Merthyr and Cardiff, last season’s top two and WRU National Cup finalists, are in a position of power.

South Wales Argus: CLASSY: Centre Sam BeardCLASSY: Centre Sam Beard

Last week the Blue and Blacks announced a raft of new arrivals at the Arms Park and among them were former Dragons James Thomas and Sam Beard plus Ospreys scrum-half Tom Habberfield.

They are three players that would improve the depth of the professional squad that plays at Rodney Parade, let alone the semi-pro one.

Even outside of the Celtic Cup period, the Dragons don’t have the resources to flood the Premiership with players, so dropping down from five to two clubs will suit.

Their more experienced players may get the odd game at Ebbw or Newport – if they earn it – while the younger ones can head to the Championship, where Cross Keys, Bedwas and Bargoed have joined Pooler.

The Premiership may not be the vital development tool it once was but it still has its value when there is a two-way partnership between club and region, the former not relying on the latter and the latter showing the former respect.

Next season promises much with everybody bar Cardiff and Merthyr starting with the prime objective of avoiding a relegation scrap.

But the drop into the Championship isn’t as bad as it used to be, which should help the Premiership clubs to be sensible and build rather than spend what they don't have.