Monday, June 14, 2021

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Rangers fans gather in Glasgow to celebrate Scottish Premiership title win despite warnings from police

Thousands of Rangers fans have gathered in the centre of Glasgow to celebrate the team’s title win, despite warnings against gathering due to rising COVID cases in the city.

Fans cheered and chanted in George Square, as police patrolled the scene, with some officers confiscating alcohol and pouring it away.

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Earlier, the team’s supporters gathered outside Ibrox, chanting as Steven Gerrard’s team arrived for their home game against Aberdeen, their last of the Scottish Premiership season.

Many lit red and blue flares and few were wearing masks.

Rangers defeated Aberdeen 4-0 – ensuring they ended they finished their campaign undefeated. They were then presented with the trophy, the club’s first in 10 years and 55th overall.

Police Scotland called on crowds to "disperse and take personal responsibility and use Greater Glasgow safely and respectfully".

Scottish Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf said on Twitter: "This is ultimately about personal responsibility. If you have gathered you should disperse, particularly given yday’s announcement about COVID in Glasgow."

Scotland is easing its lockdown restrictions to Level 2 of its five-tier system on Monday.

But Glasgow – along with Moray – is set to remain in Level 3 amid concerns a new surge of COVID-19 cases is being driven by the Indian variant of the virus.

The Scottish government previously criticised Rangers’ response after thousands of fans gathered outside Ibrox and in George Square on the weekend they clinched the title in early March.

On Friday night, scores of Rangers fans lighted red flares simultaneously along the Clyde close to the Clyde Arc, known as the "squinty bridge".

Chief Superintendent Mark Sutherland, commander for Greater Glasgow division, said: "Under the current restrictions no-one should be gathering in numbers of more than six at the stadium or any other location.

"The sacrifices people have made have allowed for further easing of regulations, however we continue to ask people to take personal responsibility and to use Greater Glasgow safely and respectfully."

Earlier this week, Mr Yousaf urged supporters not to gather.

He wrote on Twitter: "Understand what an important season it has been for @RangersFC but I am urging fans not to gather during the trophy presentation on Saturday.

The virus, he added, "has not gone away."

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