Kilmarnock's decision to cut Rangers fans' ticket allocation for the final game of the season has caused a bit of a stir.

Here, our writers make the case for and against the decision from the Kilmarnock heirarchy.

Chris Jack

WHEN it comes to an issue that isn’t really black or white, or perhaps blue and white, it is easy to see the arguments from both points of view. If Kilmarnock want to try and sell more tickets to their own fans, then they are perfectly entitled to, and quite right to.

Indeed, Rangers made a similar decision at the start of the campaign when they reduced Celtic’s allocation for Old Firm fixtures and sold those briefs to their supporters. If Killie can attract more locals through the door, that can’t be seen as a negative for the club or the game. So, good luck to them.

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The chances of Kilmarnock shifting even half of the 4,000 seats they have withheld from Rangers are slim, though, and it is hard to understand why they would take the financial risk at a time when they not only need to keep boss Steve Clarke at Rugby Park, but give him the funds to allow him to strengthen his side. Billy Bowie spoke about trying to get another 1,000 fans through the door every week to offset the loss of 16,000 paying Old Firm punters four times a season.

But surely there is enough empty space at Rugby Park to accommodate a larger home support and give Rangers, and Celtic in all likelihood, the allocations which they have taken up for years now as Old Firm fans have put significant funds into Kilmarnock’s coffers? Why can’t they do both?

Rangers fans have long been irked at what they see as smaller clubs chasing ‘the blue pound’ and capitalising on their huge travelling numbers and Kilmarnock are not the only team that have happily handed over large swathes of their ground to visiting punters.

There is little Rangers can do but the threat that they may not take 8,000 tickets, should they be offered, next season isn’t a thinly veiled one. That may be the only scenario in which Kilmarnock change their minds. As is usual in Scottish football, it will all be about the bottom line.

Graeme McGarry

BILLY Bowie may have angered Rangers with his decision to cut back on their allocation for the final day of the season, but Kilmarnock’s largest shareholder is well within his rights to make his own club his top priority.

Yes, clubs outwith the Old Firm have historically reaped the benefits financially from allowing either Rangers or Celtic to take over their grounds when they come to town, and the hiking of the ticket prices as those fans fill seats which would otherwise be empty is opportunistic to say the least.

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But ask any supporter of any other club what they would prefer, and they would always say that they would want a majority of their own fans to be filling their own stadium.

It is now up the Kilmarnock supporters to justify Bowie’s decision by snapping up tickets, but spare me the veiled threats from Rangers considering what allocation they might take at Rugby Park going forward.

The underlying message there is that Killie should be careful of biting the hand that feeds them, and the ‘Blue Pound’ they have historically relied upon to prop up their finances may not be so generous going forward.

Well, I may be wrong, but I don’t think Rangers supporters go to Kilmarnock as an act of charity. They are there to follow their team, no one is holding a gun to their heads. And I fail to see how you can be angry about Kilmarnock limiting the number of Rangers fans who can go on the one hand, only to respond by further reducing their opportunity to see their favourites out of spite.

Killie have ambitions to increase their family support in the Moffat Stand, and more power to them. Bowie and the Killie board’s priority is the interests of their own club and fans, and nobody else.

Rangers took the decision this season to cut back the allocation Celtic get for visiting Ibrox citing the very same reasoning that Kilmarnock have – to get more of their own supporters into the stadium. That sounds fair enough to me.