Provan slams SPFL's Celtic Hampden decision; urges immediate change

By David Walton

November 28, 2021

Davie Provan has slammed the SPFL’s decision to hand Hibs less than 50% of Hampden for their Premier Sports Cup final with Celtic.

A debate has been ranging ever since the allocation figures were revealed by Hibernian last week. The Easter Road club confirmed they would receive 17,500 tickets and outlined their disappointment and anger at not being given half.

This was also something that angered Hibs boss Jack Ross, who stated that history suggests the Edinburgh club would’ve sold out their allocation [Sky Sports]. Hibs failed to sell out the semi-final, but have in the past backed their team in cup finals by selling out 50% allocations.

Photo by Mark Scates/SNS Group via Getty Images

And Provan is the latest to jump on the bandwagon today. In his last ever Scottish Sun column, the former Celtic striker has urged the SPFL to make a swift change in their decision ahead of the December 19th date.

“If either Old Firm club were playing Barcelona in a Champions League final would they be happy if Barca got the lion’s share of tickets because they get bigger gates? No, they’d be squealing.

“Given Hibs could easily sell 50 percent of League Cup final tickets, why are they getting less? An equal split would make the final a better spectacle and give Hibees the chance they deserve. Over to you Mr Doncaster.”

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Celtic vs Hibernian – 50% share would’ve been the fairest outcome

There’s no real getting around it. We’re not going to pretend we’re with the decision just because it favours Celtic. Of course Hibs deserved the opportunity to sell out 50% of the stadium.

Had there been overwhelming evidence to suggest the Edinburgh club would’ve failed to so then it would’ve been more understandable. However, they have the fanbase to fill half of Hampden easily. A cup final against Celtic? They would’ve been all over it.

So it’s certainly a bit of a ming-boggler from the SPFL. Had it been us in a European final getting a smaller share then we would’ve been infuriated. Whilst the governing body will want to ensure the game is a sell-out, any tickets not sold by Hibs could’ve just been given to Celtic supporters.

Photo by ANDY BUCHANAN/AFP via Getty Images

Instead, they’ve unfairly been denied that chance. And with only 3 weeks until the cup final, it doesn’t look as though there’s going to be any change in that regard either.

This is different to the fixture scheduling complaints Hibs have had. That’s just something they need to get on with as we’re in exactly the same boat. But when it comes to the ticket allocation scenario, they have every right to feel aggrieved.

Regardless, you take any advantage you can get in football. Celtic will want to make their extra support count on the day. Given Ange Postecoglou could be on the verge of his first-ever trophy win as manager, there’s certainly plenty of excitement brewing.

In other news, Callum McGregor addresses Scott Brown’s Celtic Park return