Hearts v Rangers pre-season friendly a no-go

RANGERS will not play Hearts in a cash-raising pre-season friendly after it emerged that the Ibrox club already have a full schedule.

Hearts will not take on Rangers in a pre-season friendly. Picture: SNS

The Glasgow side’s supporters, however, condemned the request from Tynecastle manager Gary Locke who had spoken to Rangers manager Ally McCoist about the possibility of the two clubs playing before the start of the new season.

Hearts went into administration last week and have to raise over £700,000 before the start of the season with a high profile friendly seen as an ideal way of raising funds.

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Drew Robertson, of the Rangers Supporters Association, told the Daily Record: “It’s probably just as well the game isn’t going ahead. Rangers fans would not have supported it.

“Hearts had plenty to say about the position of Rangers last year. Now they are in the same place it is a bit rich of them to expect a game.”

Hearts owner Vladimir Romanov issued a statement last June which put the blame for the Ibrox club’s demise firmly at their own doorstep.

The Lithuanian made it clear that he would oppose any attempts to have a newco Rangers play in the SPL.

His statement read: “The football mafia represented by former owners of Rangers FC ...are to blame for some of the worst problems to hit Scottish football and must not be allowed back under any circumstances.”

Hearts manager Gary Locke says he has been in touch with a number of clubs regarding a friendly on July 20 adding that he was sure that fans would fill stadium no matter the opposition.

He said: “I touched base with Ally because we want to play a game that would fill the stadium. Mind you, I reckon we could play Bonnyrigg Rose and 14,500 would turn up.

“We’re keen to arrange a game and Trevor Birch has excellent contacts in the English game. We hope to get something sorted soon.”