Rangers fans have shown their anger at the club’s decision to play a friendly against Celtic by disrupting the team’s Premiership match against Dundee with organised protests.
Some supporters of the Ibrox club are unhappy with the plans to play against their rivals in an exhibition match in Australia this November as part of the inaugural Sydney Super Cup.
During Sunday’s league match against Dundee at Dens Park, the away support threw tennis balls and toilet rolls down on to the pitch while chanting their opposition to the friendly. Play had to be delayed while stewards cleared the debris from the playing surface.
Fans from both Glasgow clubs had shown their displeasure at the friendly when it was confirmed earlier this month.
At McDiarmid Park, where Rangers had travelled to play St Johnstone, away fans unfurled a banner that read “Money over morals. No d£rby friendlies.”
A section of the Celtic support at their home game against St Mirren also made their feelings known, distancing themselves from the ‘Old Firm’ tag as well as the game. A banner that read “We’re not half of anything. *Unless there’s money to be made. Shove your ‘Old Firm’ derby up your a***”.
Celtic have marketed the trip to Australia as a homecoming for their manager Ange Postecoglou but their initial announcement of the tournament didn’t mention who the opposition would be. Rangers’ participation was then confirmed by the A-League.
Rangers commercial director James Bisgrove then said that the financial returns for taking part had made the proposition attractive.
“To be frank it’s a sizeable benefit to the club from a commercial perspective to the extent that we have never had an offer of this level for two friendly games, for an international tournament,” he said in an interview circulated by Rangers on social media.
“So it is something that the board have unanimously seen as a positive opportunity for Rangers Football Club.
“To put some context around this we have spoken before on the broadcast and media values in Scotland and the club’s view on that has been well documented.
“Participation in this event over eight days will benefit the club to the same level as an entire season in the SPFL.”