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Rangers fans breach lockdown restrictions with Ibrox gathering

Daniel Harkins and Edward Dracott, PA
·2-min read

Rangers fans have broken coronavirus lockdown rules in Scotland by gathering in numbers outside Ibrox Stadium setting off flares.

Fans were seen crowding around a car entering the ground as police tried to hold them back.

Under coronavirus rules, public gatherings are banned and a maximum of two people from two households are allowed to meet outdoors.

Football games are taking place behind closed doors with no fans in the stadium.

Rangers could win the league title this weekend if they beat St Mirren on Saturday and Celtic drop points against Dundee United on Sunday.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has previously criticised fans for gathering in large numbers.

Rangers are on the verge of sealing the Scottish Premiership title
Rangers are on the verge of sealing the Scottish Premiership title (Jane Barlow/PA)

After Celtic fans took part in a protest outside the club’s stadium in November, she said: “We have advice against gatherings and every day I stand up here and say avoid crowded places.

“We have a limit on people coming together outside… so it stands to reason any group of people that are gathering together in a crowd are putting themselves and others at risk.

“Whether it’s football fans, rugby fans, any other kind of sport fans or just people in general, please don’t do it because right now, in the middle of this pandemic, it is a risky thing to do that puts you and other people at risk.”

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The Blues Brothers Rangers and Linfield FC fan group posted videos of the gathering on Twitter.

A member of the group told the PA news agency: “It’s scenes of joy. 10 years almost of pain and watching our rivals win the lot has been hard to take. It’s scenes of relief to stop the 10 in a row.

“We’d expect celebrations to be bigger when Rangers officially do win the title whether that’s tomorrow or two weeks time against Celtic.”

Rangers fan Robbie McCutcheon, an ex-soldier from Paisley who now runs his own company, Two Three Interiors, was present at Ibrox.

Rangers fans and police presence outside the ground
Rangers fans and police presence outside the ground (Jeff Holmes/PA)

“The atmosphere was electric. We’ve waited 10 years for our club to get back to where we belong,” the 34-year-old told PA.

“Credit must go to the gaffer and his backroom staff as well as the board for backing him. I hope everyone can see us now.

“I know social gatherings aren’t permitted just now but there was a lot of face masks on people today and with it being outside I hope it doesn’t ruffle too many feathers.”