Premier Sports Cup
The group stage involves 40 clubs - the 37 SPFL clubs from 2020/21 who did not qualify for Europe plus Brora Rangers (Highland League champions), Kelty Hearts (Lowland League champions) and East Kilbride (Lowland League runners-up).
Teams are drawn into eight groups of five - split into four north groups and four south groups. Each group contains one seeded club, one second seed and three unseeded clubs.
Clubs are awarded the usual three points for a win but all drawn games in the group stage go straight to penalties - the shoot-out winners receive a bonus point. ie three points for a win, two points for a shoot-out win and one point for losing on penalties.
If clubs are level on points at the end of the group stage, the criteria for separating them is 1) goal difference, 2) goals scored, 3) away goals scored, 4) matches won, 5) away matches won, 6) drawing of lots.
The eight group winners and three best runners-up progress to the second round, where they are joined by the five clubs competing in European competitions - Rangers, Celtic, Hibernian, Aberdeen and St Johnstone, who are also the cup holders.
The seeded teams in the last 16 will be the five European entrants and the three group winners with the best records.
The tournament reverts to a traditional knock-out format from the second round onwards, with ties decided by extra time and penalties if the scores are level after 90 minutes.
Premier Sports Cup 2021/22 dates
MD1: Weekend of July 10/11
MD2: Midweek of July 13/14
MD3: Weekend of July 17/18
MD4: Midweek of July 20/21
MD5: Weekend of July 24/25
Weekend of August 14/15
Midweek of September 21-23
Weekend of November 20/21
Sunday December 19