Celtic boss says Hearts cup semi-final switch is '˜unfair'

Brendan Rodgers has questioned the process behind the Scottish Professional Football League's decision to take Celtic's Betfred Cup semi-final with Hearts to Murrayfield.

The SPFL was forced into a rethink over plans to stage both Rangers’ last-four showdown with Aberdeen and Celtic’s semi-final clash with Hearts at Hampden on the same day later this month following a backlash.

The league body confirmed the switch on Wednesday, with the home of Scottish rugby staging the Hearts-Celtic game at 1.30pm, while the Rangers-Aberdeen clash remains at Hampden but with a later kick-off time of 4.30pm.

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Hearts played several games at Murrayfield at the beginning of last season when their main stand was being refurbished.

Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers is 'disappointed with the process'
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Ahead of the Europa League Group B clash with Red Bull Salzburg on Thursday night, the Hoops boss said: “My initial reaction is that I don’t mind where we play, whether it is Hampden or Murrayfield.

“My feeling would be I am disappointed with the process. It is unfair.

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“We all see the sense in not having the two games on the one day at the same venue, it probably didn’t seem right for everyone.

“So at least there is a decision made to take it away from Hampden but then you have to be fair to all four teams and all sets of supporters.”

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Rodgers added: “The minute it is booked that we were playing at a quarter to eight (at Hampden) there will be people who booked flights, boats, organised cars, and now for it to change and play elsewhere, I just think it is an unfair process.

“It feels as if it is assumed that Celtic and Hearts should go to Edinburgh. And if they are talking about a neutral venue it is certainly not neutral with Hearts having played part of their season there last season.

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“We are happy to be in the semi-final, but I think the process is unfair.”