Dundee v Rangers gets potential new date just days ahead of Celtic clash

Officials walk onto the pitch to conduct an inspection of Dens Park - the Dundee v Rangers match was eventually called off.Officials walk onto the pitch to conduct an inspection of Dens Park - the Dundee v Rangers match was eventually called off.
Officials walk onto the pitch to conduct an inspection of Dens Park - the Dundee v Rangers match was eventually called off.
SPFL officials met at Hampden Park on Tuesday to find a suitable alternative date for the game to be rescheduled.

Rangers' postponed Scottish Premiership meeting with Dundee at Dens Park last weekend has been shrouded in controversy and social media debate - with the SPFL now tasked with finding a suitable alternative date for the match to be rescheduled.

The Ibrox side were unsurprisingly left angered after match official Don Robertson deemed the pitch unplayable less than two hours before it's scheduled 12 noon kick-off on Sunday. It is the fourth time this season that Dundee's stadium have seen matches called off, even though it has emerged that the hosts did request for a later 3pm kick-off time instead.

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League officials came together at a Hampden board meeting on Tuesday to discuss when the game could be played - but this will prove harder than is often the case with no matches able to be rescheduled this month due to the international window.

Rangers return to competitive action at home to Hibs on Saturday, March 30th, while Dundee head to St Johnstone on the same day. There is therefore only a two-week midweek window in which the fixture can be fulfilled before the league splits into two sections after matchday 33 on April 14th.

No formal communication has been made as to when the game will be played. According to SPFL rules, they will have the final decision, although the board must take into account representations made by the clubs in question. It reads: "Subject to Rule C42, the Board shall have discretion to schedule and to reschedule the date, time and/or venue of any Official Match as it shall consider appropriate.

"Where reasonably practicable the Board shall consult with and shall take into account any representations made by participating Clubs before rescheduling the date, time and/or venue of an Official Match. Each Club shall comply with and play in the relevant fixtures comprised in he fixture schedule determined by the Board and any rescheduled date, time and/or venue determined from time to time by the Board for Official Matches in which the Club is a participant."

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The first practical date available to the SPFL after the international break is the midweek of April 2/3. One of the remaining blockbuster fixtures - Rangers vs Celtic on Sunday, April 7th - will prove troublesome for TV schedulers. It is likely that Philippe Clement's side will want a full week of preparation for what could be a potentially season-defining showdown.

In addition, Sky Sports would be able to broadcast the match live because those dates do not clash with any UEFA Champions League, Europa League or Conference League fixtures following Rangers' recent elimination.


It's more like that the following midweek is a better option. The final round of fixtures before the split see Dundee travel to Aberdeen on Saturday, April 13th, while Rangers venture north to Dingwall to face Ross County 24 hours later. With the Gers in action against their Old Firm rivals on April 7th, this means the only date available in that range is Wednesday, April 10th.

However, that clashes with Champions League quarter-finals on TV, meaning Sky Sports would likely prefer another date slot rather than going directly up against TNT Sports coverage.

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Given the congested calendar, it is no surprise that Rangers boss Philippe Clement was less than impressed with how events unfolded on Tayside. He stated: "We weren't warned about it - not Saturday evening, during the night. I hear now that people started to work on the pitch at five o'clock in the morning. So, in that way they did their best. But we were only told there was an issue because our kitman was at the stadium early, at around 9.15am. He warned us about the situation and for me that's a really strange thing."