CELTIC fans could be back in place to support the champions by the middle of next month.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon today announced football grounds may reopen to supporters throughout Scotland from September 14.

The Hoops last figured in a domestic game outwith the current lockdown on March 7 when 58.998 watched them beat St Mirren 5-0 before football went into cold storage due to the coronavirus pandemic. Leigh Griffiths netted a hat-trick, Odsonne Edouard hammered in his 28th goal of the campaign and Callum McGregor claimed the last strike of the campaign with a penalty-kick.

Ms Sturgeon, in a media report, said: “Given the volatility we face in transmission of the virus, there is a very real possibility that some or all of these plans could change.

“However, with that significant caveat, we hope that from September 14 sports stadia will be able to reopen only for limited numbers of spectators and with strict physical distancing in place.

“Some professional sports events might be arranged for spectators before then, with Scottish Government agreement, to test the safety of any new arrangements.

“We also hope that from September 14 indoor contact sports activities can resume for people aged 12 and over and we hope that entertainment sites and cultural venues such as theatres and live music venues will be able to reopen from that date too, but with strict physical distancing in place.

“To facilitate that, these venues can reopen for preparation and rehearsal from the 24th of August.”

The champions kicked off their bid for a historic 10 in a row to an empty ground earlier this month when they defeated Hamilton Accies on Flag Day where it was Edouard’s turn to collect a trio. with Jeremie Frimpong and Patryk Klimala also on target.

The bulletin from the Holyrood chief means there is likely to be a limited number of supporters allowed into Parkhead on October 17 when Steven Gerrard’s Ibrox outfit visit for the first Glasgow derby of the season.

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