RANGERS’ match against Elgin City tomorrow has been postponed because too many tickets were sold.
The game at Borough Briggs stadium was scheduled for a lunchtime kick-off, but was called off by police and council officials last night on safety grounds.
The Scottish Football League said there had been a “substantial oversale of tickets”. Moray Council said the stadium has a capacity of 4,500 but around 1,000 more tickets have been sold for the match.
Earlier this week, Elgin director and safety officer Martyn Hunter said 4,520 tickets had been sold and that the stadium would be at its capacity for the first time in years.
A spokesman for Moray Council said: “We are extremely disappointed to have to ask the club to cancel the game. It is certainly not a decision anyone involved has taken lightly. We know how thousands of fans have been looking forward to the match, but there is a real risk to their safety here. The ground can only take 4,500, so another 1,000-plus disappointed fans with nowhere to go is a major concern.”
Match Commander Superintendent Mark Cooper said: “On Friday afternoon it came to light that tickets for Saturday’s Elgin City v Rangers fixture had been substantially oversold. After discussions with the club it was clear that we were faced with the prospect of at least 1,100 extra fans turning up for what was an already sold out fixture.
“We understand that fans will be disappointed with the cancellation of this match but our primary concern always has to be safety and we could not allow a situation that potentially put lives or the welfare of the general public at risk.”
Rangers accepted an apology from Elgin over the postponement but manager Ally McCoist expressed his disappointment.
He said: “We are disappointed the match has been called off at such short notice and I know Elgin are as well. This was due to circumstances outwith our control, but we were informed a short time ago that there was no way the match could go ahead on safety grounds.
“I am sure this is a huge disappointment to our supporters, who have purchased match tickets and arranged travel in good faith. Elgin City have apologised to the club and we accept their apology, but I feel for our fans.”
Ross Jack, the Elgin City manager, understandably felt the postponement was a hammer-blow, describing the news as “unbelievable”.
The City manager was still awaiting full information from club officials on what exactly had gone wrong.
Jack said: “I’m waiting on some return calls before I can say too much. But as far I am aware, it has definitely been postponed.
“I don’t know much more at this stage but it goes without saying it is bitterly disappointing for everyone connected with the club for a match of this
magnitude to be called off at this late stage.
“The players and everybody at the club have been looking
forward to the game hugely.”
City wing-back Daniel Moore said the players were devastated and called the postponement as “embarrassing”.
Rangers are currently two points ahead of Elgin at the top of the Scottish Third Division. The Scottish Football League said it will “conduct a full investigation into the circumstances” of the postponement