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Apr 13, 2010

Rangers call for SPL's top-six split to be scrapped

Scottish Premier League leaders Rangers are angry over the league's controversial split and have highlighted a "lack of sporting integrity" in how games are arranged.

The Gers have been handed three away fixtures in a row as the climax to the season's finale builds and are unhappy that the SPL splits into two sections of six for the final five games.

Other clubs, including Motherwell and St Mirren, have expressed disapproval over the move, but Rangers are leading the calls for it to be scrapped.

The statement on the club's official website read: ''Rangers have called for a debate over the structure of the SPL because too many external factors are affecting the make-up of the post-split fixtures which has led to a lack of sporting integrity. Indeed, the club would like to look at ways of losing the split completely...

''Rangers are being forced to play three consecutive away matches - Hibs (April 25), Dundee United (May 1) and Celtic (May 4). This flies in the face of one of the main priorities created by the SPL Fixtures Working Group which states that no team should have to play three away matches or three home matches in succession.

Chief Executive Martin Bain added: "We are obviously pleased to be in a good position in the SPL going into the post-split fixtures. However we have not won anything yet and we feel that the way the games have been scheduled places us at a competitive disadvantage.

"We find it very disappointing and surprising that we have been asked to play three consecutive away matches in the space of 10 days at such a crucial stage of the season.

"We know we have work to do in our efforts to win the Championship but it is maybe just as well we have a good lead given the schedule we are faced with. It is certainly our understanding that clubs are never forced to play three away games in a row before the split so we don't know why we are being asked to do so now.''

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