Football clubs need to make a decision over TV money and the rewards they receive for playing in European competition. They seem more than happy to accept the funds but don’t like the consequences of when it requires them to play their fixtures.
Steven Gerrard is the latest manager to complain about the league not trying to help his team when it comes to fixture scheduling after a European tie on a Thursday night. The Sun reported on some of his comments as he complained about the kick off time, despite Gerrard also insisting he was not complaining about it.
Gerrard spoke about Sunday’s lunchtime kick off with St Johnstone by saying: “We are not complaining, it is the way it is. But certainly for us and Celtic, you would like to think that our own league would help us in terms of kick-off times. But they go the other way and make them earlier and they give you morning kick-offs.”
Celtic also played on Thursday night but will play their game on Sunday slightly later in the afternoon. It is worth pointing out that they faced a trip to France while Rangers were at home, so this could also be part of the reason for the schedule.
Both games are live on TV so you can only imagine Rangers won’t be refusing the TV money that will come with the fixture. The two games can’t be played at the same time or there would be a clash with TV viewership.
You do also wonder if Steven Gerrard is a bit worried about dropping some points on the visit to Perth on Sunday. Tommy Wright’s Saints are near the bottom of the league but are improving after some big signings in recent weeks. Scottish Cup winning hero Stevie May returned to the club but Jason Holt won’t be able to play against Rangers because he’s on loan from the Glasgow side.
Gerrard’s men have struggled in Perth in the past. They were only able to scrape a 2-1 win at McDiarmid park last season so they will need to be at their best to get a result.
There’s also a good chance his team will be knackered after an emotional win on Thursday where they honoured Fernando Ricksen by beating Feyenoord 1-0. At least if Rangers don’t win, Gerrard has got his excuses in early.