No supporters will be inside Hampden at next weekend’s Scottish Cup final after the Scottish Government announced Glasgow will not move to level two coronavirus restrictions.
The Scottish Football Association confirmed the showpiece event between St Johnstone and Hibs on May 22 will take place in front of an empty national stadium.
It tweeted on Friday evening: “Following today’s Scottish Government announcement that Glasgow will remain under level three Covid restrictions for at least another week, the Scottish government have subsequently confirmed that fans will now not be permitted to attend the Scottish Cup Final.”
Nicola Sturgeon told MSPs on Friday that Glasgow and Moray will remain in level three of the Scottish Government’s strategic framework for at least another week.
People have been asked not to travel in and out of those local authority areas during that time unless their journey is essential.
Negotiations between the SFA, UEFA and the government in the past few days had seen agreement reached for each of the finalists to have 300 fans in attendance at the game on May 22.
Clubs were finalising their plans to distribute the tickets to supporters but there will now be no prospect of fans travelling from Edinburgh or Perth to the national stadium.
Hibs said on Friday evening they had received clarification from the SFA that supporters would not be able to attend the final.
The club said in a statement: “Hibernian FC this evening received clarification from the Scottish FA that – owing to the Scottish Government’s decision that Glasgow should remain in level three lockdown for at least the next ten days as a precaution against higher levels of covid 19 infections – the cup final on May 22 must now be played behind closed doors, with no fans present.
“Consequently, the Club is unable to provide any tickets other than for those essential to the playing of the match.”
Latest figures published on Friday showed Glasgow has overtaken Moray as Scotland’s Covid hotspot.
The city recorded 80.4 cases per 100,000 people in the seven days to May 11, pushing it ahead of Moray where there were 68.9.
Sturgeon said there was evidence that the outbreak in Glasgow was being driven by the Indian B.1.617.2 variant, adding that the situation in Scotland’s largest city is causing even more concern than the recent spike in cases in Moray.