Steven Gerrard: Unfair on Celtic and Rangers to play two games in 48 hours

Rangers manager Steven Gerrard insists it will be unjust on either his team or Old Firm rivals Celtic if one of them is forced to play their Betfred Cup semi-final just two days after a Europa League match.

The semi-final draw threw up that awkward potential scenario for the SPFL after the clubs avoided each other.

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Rangers will play Aberdeen, while holders Celtic were paired with Hearts. The ties are scheduled to take place on consecutive days at Hampden on Saturday 27 and Sunday 28 October.

Steven Gerrard has insisted it would be unfair to make Celtic or Rangers play a Betfred Cup tie just two days after a Europa League game. Picture: SNS Group
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Both Rangers and Celtic are in European action on Thursday 25 October - Gerrard’s men at home to Spartak Moscow while Brendan Rodgers’ side face RB Leipzig in Germany.

“Listen, whoever has to do that, it’s not fair on any team, having played on the Thursday night,” said Gerrard after Rangers’ 4-0 quarter-final win over Ayr United at Ibrox.

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“I’ll be interested to see the outcome, how they decide. All the best with that one. We’ll deal with that when we have to. 
“I’m not sure how they will select who plays when or what the rules are. Whoever has to do it, it won’t be fair as 48 hours is not enough.”

Ayr United manager Ian McCall had no complaints with the outcome but felt his team were denied a clear penalty by referee Bobby Madden when Alan Forrest went down under a Jon Flanagan challenge when the score was just 1-0.

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“It was a clear penalty and Bobby says he will phone us to apologise,” said McCall.

“But 4-0 was a fair reflection of the game. They are a decent Rangers team. They are getting back to the level that they used to be. So good luck to them.”

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