A Rangers pub in Blackpool has been reportedly bombarded with booking requests from Scottish fans desperate to watch next week’s Old Firm derby.

Bosses at The Gallant Pioneer say they have received 48 messages from supporters north of the border since new restrictions were announced on hospitality yesterday.

Licensed premises in the central belt will close for 16 days from tomorrow, while tougher measures were confirmed on pubs and restaurants elsewhere in the country.

It means that the majority of fans from both clubs will have to watch the first Old Firm clash of the Scottish Premiership season from their home.

The majority of Celtic and Rangers fans in Scotland will have to watch this month’s Old Firm clash at home due to new coronavirus restrictions

Some diehard Gers fans appear to be seeking alternative ways of securing a date at the pub for the occasion.

The Gallant Pioneer has insisted that it will host supporters, but only on a first come first served basis.

A spokesperson for the boozer wrote yesterday: “Since teatime tonight, we’ve had 48 messages from people wanting to come from Scotland for the game v them on October 17.

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“We will not be able to accommodate everyone sheerly down to the numbers during these times.

“We do not take bookings we are first come first serve for every match.

They added: “There will be a queue from early so the only advice we can give is be early as when we have reached capacity we will be very strict and entry will be denied.”

The Gallant Pioneer posted shortly after the announcement on coronavirus restrictions yesterday

Nicola Sturgeon announced a raft of changes to the lockdown restrictions amid a rising number of infections in the country.

A number of other businesses have been ordered to shut later this week, in addition to the new rules on hospitality.

But the First Minister stopped short on imposing travel restrictions seen during the height of the pandemic in March and April.

It means that there is no law stopping Rangers fans from travelling to Blackpool from Scotland.

However, the Scottish Government has urged people in the central belt not to travel outside their health board area ‘if they don’t need to’.

The Mirror reported last night that the north of England could see similar restrictions to that imposed by government officials in Scotland.

Nicola Sturgeon announced new coronavirus restrictions in Holyrood yesterday

Ministers are said to be considering the closure of pubs and restaurants after a rise in coronavirus cases in areas such as Liverpool, Manchester and Newcastle – which could also affect pubs like The Gallant Pioneer in neighbouring Blackpool.