Rangers’ Betfred Cup campaign will hopefully go more smoothly than the organisation of the tournament.
It’s difficult to know where to even begin. The competition up until the semi-final stage had seemed smooth enough. Rangers eased through to the semi-final thanks to their win over Ayr United. Celtic, Aberdeen, and Hearts all also progressed to set-up the next stage.
Even the group stages of the competition went well enough without too many complaints. Yet, now we arrive at the semi-final stage, problems can’t stop coming up on a weekly basis.
To start off, we had the incredible lack of foresight from the SPFL when they failed to take into account that both Rangers and Celtic could be playing in the Europa League. Despite the fact both sides were playing playoff clashes all the way back in August, it still wasn’t noticed.
This ultimately led to both sides having to have their fixtures changed for the semi-final. This was down to the fact that both halves of the Old Firm had massive European clashes just two scheduled days before the original fixture.
The SPFL then managed to get around a table and come to an absolutely outrageously rushed and incompetent decision. We were set for a massive Super Sunday free-for-all in Glasgow. Rangers were to play Aberdeen in an early kick-off which angered the Dons. Celtic were then scheduled to pitch up at the same venue, Hampden, just hours later for their match against Hearts.
Fans of both Rangers and Aberdeen would’ve had to rush out the area to avoid conflict with opposition supporters. Meanwhile, Celtic and Hearts fans would’ve had to stay away from the area until the first two sides’ supporters had left. It was a joke, and unsurprisingly it was quickly amended.
Now, we have Aberdeen vs Rangers at Hampden at 16:30. Meanwhile, Celtic will face Hearts at Murrayfield at 13:30. Finally, a competent decision that was still managed to be made at a late time. The decision is unfair on Hearts and Celtic supporters who had made arrangements for Hampden, but something did need done in the end.
Next up, we had the ticket nonsense. Aberdeen claim they were lied to in their allocation situation. Apparently, the SPFL moved the goalposts, and have ultimately refused to give Aberdeen a 50-50 split of the stadium and instead gifted them 20,300 tickets.
The SPFL then yesterday had to write to Aberdeen to voice their discontent at their selling strategy. Apparently, the Dons refused to sell tickets in seats that have poor sight of the pitch. This will leave gaping empty seats at the ground, and considering Aberdeen have sold just 10,000, this could become another issue. Rangers, therefore, look like missing out on an additional 10,000 briefs.
The competition hasn’t always been this shoddily arranged. The last two years have seen the Betfred Cup come and go without much incident.
Incompetence, laziness, and self-interest have plagued this tournament this season. So our question to the Rangers fans, is does this rank up there as one of the poorest competitions in Rangers’ history for organisation?