Violence as fans clash after Hearts v Rangers

A groundsman tries to clear the pitch before the game. pic: Lisa Ferguson

A groundsman tries to clear the pitch before the game. pic: Lisa Ferguson

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WINTER weather has caused chaos for football fans tonight after the crunch tie between Rangers and Hearts at Ibrox was abandoned after just 24 minutes.

There were reports tonight of ugly scenes outside the stadium, with Hearts fans saying the windows on a supporter bus full of young fans had been smashed by a brick, while others reported fighting between rival supporters.

Ibrox Stadium in Glasgow as snow falls before the Scottish Championship match. Pic: PA Wire

Ibrox Stadium in Glasgow as snow falls before the Scottish Championship match. Pic: PA Wire

And some Hearts fans reported being kept inside the stadium by police for their own safety.

Supporters of the Capital club endured a torrid journey to the game after the snow caused delays on the M8, with many of the estimated 2000 supporters missing kick-off due to the delays.

And despite a pre-match pitch inspection at 7pm which saw referee Bobby Madden rule the game should go ahead, it was clear from the off that conditions were unsafe.

It soon became apparent, however, that both sets of players were struggling to keep their footing and the ball was holding up in the snow.

Madden duly called a halt to proceedings after a couple of conversations with both managers.

Boos rang out around the ground after the game was finally abandoned, adding to an atmosphere that was already bubbling due to a Rangers fan protest against the ongoing management problems of the Glasgow club, which saw mounted police called to disperse protesters.

Referee Madden later insisted it had been the right decision to try to start the match.

But the situation was branded a “farce” by fans.

A date for the rescheduled match is yet to be announced.