Date: 31st May 2020 at 10:05am
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The Betfred Cup could still be played next season even though the competition is scheduled to start in just six weeks time.

Over the last five years the competition has opened with four group matches involving all SPFL clubs except those involved in European competitions.

Celtic have lifted the trophy in each of the last four years with the new format of a final in November or December appearing to suit the hoops when they come in at the knock-out stage four matches from lifting silverware.

Getting the regular league season kicked off is a priority even though the 2019/20 Scottish Cup is suspended at the semi-final stage with Celtic, Aberdeen, Hearts and Hibs still involved.

The Sun reports:

The Betfred Cup is scheduled to kick off with group stages on July 11 – but that is now a non-starter.

SPFL chief executive Neil Doncaster has held urgent talks with Premier, who also have rights to the Scottish Cup.

And it’s understood the broadcaster assured him they are keen to screen a rescheduled Betfred competition later in the season.

Premier Sports has replaced BT Sport as the exclusive rights holder to the League Cup.

A straight knock-out competition would be better than simply cancelling the tournament but scheduling will need to be tight.

Completing the 2019/20 Scottish Cup, almost certainly in front of fans at Hampden, is important to the SFA as well as getting the 2020/21 competition underway.

Celtic are still waiting to hear from UEFA about the Champions League qualification process with very few certainties about how the 2020/21 season will look.