Betfred Cup Final preview

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Sunday 26th November 2017
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Motherwell and Celtic meet in Sunday’s Betfred Cup Final at Hampden Park, with the big game live on BT Sport, kick-off 3.00pm.

Road to the final: Motherwell’s Group F campaign began at Hampden with a 5-1 win over Queen’s Park then beat Morton (4-0), Edinburgh City (2-1) and Berwick Rangers (1-0) to top Group F. Stephen Robinson’s side knocked out Ross County 3-2 after extra time in Dingwall in the last 16 then saw off Aberdeen 3-0 at Fir Park in the quarter-final. A Louis Moult double earned them a 2-0 victory over Rangers in the semi-final at Hampden on October 22.

Celtic thrashed Kilmarnock 5-0 at Parkhead as they began their defence of the trophy at Parkhead, helped by a stunning long-range strike from Kieran Tierney and a Leigh Griffiths double. Dundee were dismissed 4-0 in the quarter-final at Dens Park, with James Forrest bagging a brace. Mikael Lustig and Moussa Dembele both scored twice in the 4-2 semi-final defeat of Hibernian on October 21.

Past League Cup meetings: This is the first time the teams have met in the final but there have been 17 previous encounters overall. Celtic won the 1986/87 semi-final on penalties after a 2-2 draw and also came out on top in the 2005/06 last four, winning 2-1 at Hampden. Brendan Rodgers’ men triumphed 5-0 in the second round of last year’s Betfred Cup.

League Cup pedigree: Celtic are the current holders and have won the trophy 16 times. They are bidding to retain it for the first time since 2000/01 but were League Cup winners five years in a row under Jock Stein in the second half of the 1960s. The Hoops beat Aberdeen 3-0 in last season’s Betfred Cup final to seal their 100th major honour. 

Motherwell’s sole League Cup triumph was in 1950/51 when George Stevenson’s side upset the odds to beat Hibernian 3-0. Well were runners-up to Hearts a few years later and their only other final appearance was in 2004/05 – David Partridge scored their goal in a 5-1 loss to Rangers.

Current form: Celtic lost heavily to Paris Saint-Germain on Wednesday night but their unbeaten domestic run was extended to 64 games thanks to a 1-0 win at Ross County last weekend. Motherwell are fifth in the Ladbrokes Premiership table and defeated Aberdeen 2-0 at Pittodrie on Saturday. 

This season: This is the first meeting of the teams in 2017/18 but it’s also the first part of a triple bill. The sides go head to head again in the Ladbrokes Premiership at Fir Park on Wednesday then meet at Celtic Park next Saturday.

Betfred match odds: Motherwell 10/1, Celtic 1/4, Draw 9/2

Referee: Craig Thomson
Assistants: David McGeachie & Sean Carr 
Fourth official: Andrew Dallas

Extra time: If the scores are level after 90 minutes then the tie will be settled after extra time and, if required, kicks from the penalty mark.

Tickets: There will be NO tickets on sale at Hampden on matchday. 

Important information: All fans should note that enhanced search arrangements will be in place at Hampden Park. This additional safety measure has the potential to delay entry into the ground so fans are strongly encouraged to get to the stadium as early as possible. Turnstiles open 90 minutes before the match begins, ie 1.30pm

Travel advice: Recommended routes and information HERE

Programme: An A4 souvenir programme will be on sale outside the ground, priced £5.

Turnstiles: Open 90 minutes before kick-off. Fans are urged to arrive in plenty of time.

Win a car! The SPFL Trust, in conjunction with Phoenix Hyundai, are giving away a brand new Hyundai i10. Tickets are £2 and will be on sale at various points outside the ground before the game. The draw will be made on the pitch at half-time.

TV: Exclusively live on BT1. Coverage begins at 2.00pm.

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