CELTIC will kick off their bid for the League Cup with a meeting against Hearts at Parkhead next month.

By coincidence, the Hoops also begin their quest for a tenth title in 11 years against the Edinburgh side at Tynecastle on Saturday with an 8pm kick-off.

The team, then managed by Neil Lennon, lost their remarkable unbeaten run in domestic knock-out competitions when they crashed 2-0 at home to Ross County in the League Cup in November last year.

The tournament now represents Ange Postecoglou’s opportunity to win his first silverware as Celtic boss.

His predecessor enjoyed his last success as gaffer over Robbie Neilson’s side when Kristoffer Ajer thrashed in a penalty-kick in the dramatic spot-kick shoot-out in the delayed Scottish Cup Final at Hampden five days before Christmas.

The game ended 3-3 following extra-time and rookie keeper Connor Hazard played a major role with two superb stops in the nail-biting climax.

Holders St Johnstone travel to Arbroath while Scott Brown’s Aberdeen have been handed a trip to Raith Rovers.

Motherwell face Dundee in an all-Premiership tie, while Livingston and St Mirren meet in a repeat of last season’s semi-final.

Hibs will host demoted Kilmarnock at Easter Road, while Dundee United travel to face Ayr United.

All second-round matches are scheduled to be held on the weekend of August 14 and 15.

The full draw is:

CELTIC v Hearts

Arbroath v St Johnstone

Hibs v Kilmarnock

Ayr v Dundee Utd

Raith v Aberdeen

Dundee v Motherwell

Livingston v St Mirren

Rangers v Dunfermline


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