CELTIC have revealed why they requested their early-January clash with Hibs be rearranged.

The Easter Road bosses reacted furiously to the SPFL’s announcement the fixture had been moved from Saturday, January 9 to Monday, January 11, as CQN reported yesterday.

Leeann Dempster, the Edinburgh club’s chief executive, insisted they had not been consulted by the Hampden hierarchy after the Leith outfit had rejected the Hoops’ initial request to the dates switch.

But the Parkhead club insist they followed due process and admitted plans to arrange a winter training camp were behind their desire for the fixture change.

A spokesperson for the nine-in-a-row champions said: “Celtic can confirm that its match against Hibernian scheduled for the New Year has been moved to Monday 11th January 2021 with a 19:45hrs kick-off”.

“The club, through the proper SPFL process has made this request with a view to arranging a winter training camp during this particular week, something which has proven hugely beneficial to the squad in recent seasons.”

HEAD BHOY…Callum McGregor celebrates after scoring the opening goal in the 3-0 win over Hibs in September.

Dempster wrote on Twitter: “Apologies to our supporters and our head coach.

“This was done without my knowledge – we said no to the original request from Celtic because the request didn’t work for our club.

“The SPFL appears to have agreed this without a call to the decision makers at our club. @spfl

“We are fizzing about this – @spfl know I am leaving soon (ish) but they still have my mobile number so a call should have been easy to do – or @gmathie82 or even to our Chairman. Not good enough. Move to Monday without asking us?”

It will be the third meeting of the clubs this season with Neil Lennon’s side winning 3-0 in Glasgow with goals from Callum McGregor, Albian Ajeti and Mohamed Elyounoussi in September, but it took a stoppage-time effort from Diego Laxalt to give the visitors a 2-2 draw at Easter Road last month.

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