Rangers cancel Celtic fans’ allocation for SWPL showdown - what both clubs had to say

Intelligence on high-risk fans planning to attend prompted Ibrox club to act

Issues over ticket allocations for Old Firm matches is not restricted to the men’s game, it seems, with Rangers on Saturday cancelling Celtic's away allocation for this weekend's SWPL fixture.

Rangers and Celtic’s women’s teams meet at Ibrox on Sunday in a top-of-the-table match that is being broadcast live on BBC Alba. Rangers are four points clear of their Glasgow rivals at the top of the SWPL.

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It emerged Rangers have cancelled all tickets for Celtic supporters, with the Ibrox club saying they had received information of high-risk fans planning to attend which would have required a significant police presence. "Intelligence received by Rangers and Celtic suggested groups of 'risk' supporters in a significant number had purchased tickets from the Celtic allocation," Rangers said.

Rangers and Celtic are due to meet in the SWPL on Sunday.Rangers and Celtic are due to meet in the SWPL on Sunday.
Rangers and Celtic are due to meet in the SWPL on Sunday.

"Rangers called an urgent operational meeting between both clubs and Police Scotland, with Police Scotland indicating they would need to deploy a sizeable resource at short notice.

"A unique selling point of the women's game is the unsegregated, family-friendly atmosphere. Rangers' security team decided it would be unsafe to allow these 'risk' supporters into the stadium, and with Celtic unwilling to cancel just their tickets, the decision to cancel all tickets was taken."

Celtic described the decision as “hugely disappointing” and said that they would contact Rangers about arranging refunds. “ At a time when so many are working so hard to promote and support the women's game in Scotland, the decision to deny access to so many fans is hugely disappointing, even more so given that there were a number of options available to the home club to allow our fans to safely attend in a stadium of such capacity and given the expected crowd,” a statement from Celtic read.