Rangers spared cash outlay for cup clash tickets

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CASH-STRAPPED Rangers have not been asked to pay in advance for the 21,000 tickets they have been given for their League Cup semi-final against Celtic – because such a request would be against SPFL rules.

The Hampden showdown on 1 February will be the first meeting between the Glasgow giants since Celtic won 3-0 at Parkhead on April 29, 2012 and is a guaranteed sell-out.

Hampden Park. Picture: TSPL

Hampden Park. Picture: TSPL

Priority tickets were made available at Ibrox yesterday for season-ticket holders but, although the tickets will raise over £500,000, Rangers won’t need to part with that money until the middle of next month. That’s in spite of the fact that the club has been forced to ask for emergency loans in recent months simply to keep the lights on. Ironically, when Craig Whyte’s Rangers were heading for administration and liquidation, Celtic insisted on cash up front before providing them with tickets for a league game at Parkhead on 28 December.

However, they won’t be forced to post a bond for the cup tickets – revenue generated will be shared between the four semi-finalists and the league – according to the ruling body.

“Our company regulations state that participating clubs don’t have to provide the money raised from ticket sales for the League Cup semi-finals or final to the SPFL until ten days after the ties have been played,” said SPFL secretary Ian Blair. “While we obviously monitor the reality of the situation it’s important that all of our member clubs are treated fairly and equally.”