The SPFL has today unveiled the fixture lists for the 2016/17 Ladbrokes Premiership, Ladbrokes Championship, Ladbrokes League 1 and Ladbrokes League 2 seasons.
The upcoming Scottish League football campaign kicks off on Saturday, 6 August across all four SPFL leagues, in partnership with title sponsor Ladbrokes, with the opening day fixtures reading:
- LADBROKES PREMIERSHIP
Hearts v Celtic
Kilmarnock v Motherwell
Partick Thistle v Inverness
Rangers v Hamilton
Ross County v Dundee
St Johnstone v Aberdeen
- LADBROKES CHAMPIONSHIP
Ayr United v Raith Rovers
Dundee United v Queen of the South
Dunfermline Athletic v Dumbarton
Falkirk v Hibernian
St Mirren v Morton
- LADBROKES LEAGUE 1
Alloa Athletic v Peterhead
Brechin City v Stenhousemuir
East Fife v Albion Rovers
Livingston v Stranraer
Queen’s Park v Airdrieonians
- LADBROKES LEAGUE 2
Annan Athletic v Stirling Albion
Arbroath v Berwick Rangers
Clyde v Montrose
Cowdenbeath v Elgin City
Edinburgh City v Forfar Athletic
Next season also sees Celtic and Rangers meet on league duty for the first time since the SPFL’s inception in 2013, their opening clash scheduled to take place on Saturday, 10 September, with Aberdeen and Hearts – who meet on the second weekend of the season – joining them as the most fancied to do battle at the top end of the top tier, according to Ladbrokes.
Hibernian, Dundee United and Falkirk are expected to compete for the Ladbrokes Championship, and Neil Lennon’s team will visit the Falkirk Stadium on the opening weekend. Elsewhere David Hopkin’s Livingston and Barry Ferguson’s Clyde are tipped to win Ladbrokes League 1 and Ladbrokes League 2 respectively, based on odds provided by the SPFL title sponsor.
Following today’s announcement certain fixtures are subject to movement pending TV selections. Celtic v Partick Thistle, scheduled for Saturday, 13 August, will be postponed at Celtic’s request (using their ‘Joker’ entitlement); reschedule information to be issued shortly.
Neil Doncaster, SPFL chief executive, said: “If the talk of football fans across Scotland is anything to go by, season 2016/17 is shaping up to be the most exciting in Scottish football in a long number of years.
“Today’s fixtures announcement in conjunction with our valued title sponsor Ladbrokes only serves to whet the appetite and we are all now counting down the days to the opening weekend of action in early August.”
David Macdonald of Ladbrokes said: “Season 2016/17 is shaping up to be one of the most exciting in recent times in Scottish football, and Ladbrokes are extremely proud SPFL sponsors.”