Scottish Cup final in December



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Scottish Cup Final delayed Image: Hampden Park

The pandemic-delayed 2020 version of the William Hill Scottish Cup Final will take place on December 20. This was confirmed by Scottish FA (SFA). That is more than seven months after the original date for the final on May 9.

The William Hill Scottish Cup is an annual association football knock-out cup competition for men’s football clubs in Scotland. The Scottish Football Association (also known as the SFA and the Scottish FA) is the governing body of football in Scotland and has the ultimate responsibility for the control and development of football in Scotland, UK.

The match was earlier supposed to take place on May 9 at Hampden Park – a football stadium in Glasgow, Scotland. Now, it will be played at the end of the year in the run-up to the Christmas period. The Scottish football season was curtailed due to the COVID-19 scourge with the domestic cup competition still at the semi-final stage. The Scottish FA has also confirmed that the semi-final fixtures will also take place at Hampden Park on October 31st and November 1st, 2020.

The competition was stopped at the semifinal stage. Defending champion Celtic will play Aberdeen and Edinburgh rivals Hearts and Hibernian will meet in the other semifinal on the weekend of October 31-November 1 at Hampden Park.

As per the SFA, players who had earlier played for another team during the 2019-20 competition will not be cup-tied for the semi-finals and final. This means players who would ordinarily be barred from playing for a second team in the same competition can play for their new club even if they were earlier fielded by a different team.

Cup-tied means in association football, a player who has appeared for a football club during a knockout cup but subsequently transfers to another club is ineligible to play for the new club in the remainder of that season’s cup competition.

“We are pleased to confirm dates for the remaining stages of the 2019-20 William Hill Scottish Cup,” said Ian Maxwell, Chief Executive, Scottish FA.

“It has always been our intention to play the tournament to a finish and while the impact of COVID-19 has dramatically altered the schedule, we are confident that the final will be a unique and memorable showpiece event during the Christmas holidays,” Maxwell further mentioned.

“The dates for the final stages of the competition will give the semi-finalists the best chance to prepare for such important fixtures. By ensuring no players will be cup-tied, we have also ensured that each club will be able to field their strongest possible teams,” the Chief Executive added.

“The dates also give us the best possible chance of having supporters attend the matches at Hampden. The health and well-being of players, staff and supporters are of paramount importance and we will continue to follow the public health guidance from the Scottish Government,” Maxwell averred.

The SFA has also confirmed that clubs will be permitted to use five substitutes in the remaining games.

The 2020-21 seasons in the Scottish league will start on August 1. The 2019-20 league seasons did not resume after the lockdown and Celtic was declared champion based on average points per game.

The Celtic Football Club is a Scottish professional football club based in Glasgow, which plays in the Scottish Premiership.

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