Rangers fans descend on Ibrox after Premiership winon March 7, 2021 at 5:45 pm

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Nicola Sturgeon urges fans to go home as they celebrate Rangers winning the Scottish Premiership.

Rangers fans at Ibrox on Sunday

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Police say a “small number” of arrests were made and fines issued after crowds of fans gathered to celebrate Rangers winning the Scottish Premiership.

Large numbers of supporters made their way to Ibrox Stadium and Glasgow’s George Square to mark the achievement despite warnings to stay at home.

Nicola Sturgeon said the crowds were “infuriating and disgraceful” and could delay the end of the Covid lockdown.

The result gave Rangers an unassailable 20-point lead and the title for the first time in 10 years.

Under current guidance, public gatherings are banned and a maximum of two people from two households are allowed to meet outdoors.

George Square, Glasgow

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Rangers fans at Ibrox on Sunday

image copyrightGetty Images

Football games are taking place behind closed doors with no fans in the stadium.

However, following Sunday’s game, crowds of fans took to the streets, as some let off flares while others chanted and waved flags outside the club ground. In Glasgow city centre fans flocked to George Square to celebrate being crowned Scottish champions.

In a tweet, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon congratulated Rangers on the title win, but added: “Gathering in crowds just now risks lives, and could delay exit from lockdown for everyone else.”

“If those gathering care at all about the safety of others & the country, they will go home,” she said.

In a later tweet she added it was “infuriating and disgraceful” to see the crowds “risk our progress” after everyone complying with lockdown rules has made “so many sacrifices”.

Ch Supt Mark Sutherland said officers attended gatherings at both George Square and outside Ibrox stadium.

He added: “Public safety remains our utmost priority and I would again remind fans that, in line with the current Scottish government coronavirus guidelines, all gatherings are currently restricted.

“Officers have made a small number of arrests and issued fixed penalty notices for breaches of the coronavirus restrictions, minor incidents of disorder and the use of pyrotechnic devices.”

He said the force would continue with an “appropriate policing response”.

Earlier in the day the justice secretary urged fans not to put lives at risk by flouting lockdown rules.

Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf said it would be “churlish” not to congratulate the team, but added: “I understand Rangers fans will be desperate to celebrate but please remember you must stay at home.

“No mass gatherings are allowed. We cannot risk any further spread of the virus.”

Mr Yousaf also warned that Uefa would be paying “close attention” in anticipation of the European Championships coming to Scotland.

He said fans should obey the “stay at home” message “otherwise you are putting your life, and many others in danger”.

Following their win, some Rangers players made their way to the fence to celebrate in sight of fans outside.

Speaking on BBC Scotland’s Sunday Show, Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross called the actions of fans outside Ibrox “completely wrong”.

He added: “We’ve all done so much to get the virus rates down.

“I understand passions run high with football fans, but it clearly didn’t match what we expect people to do during a Covid period, while many people still can’t even leave their homes.”

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