Craig Bryson has appealed for a solution to be found to get St Johnstone supporters into Hampden Park for the club’s shot at a cup double.
The Perth midfielder, who was part of the team which got past St Mirren in Sunday’s Scottish Cup semi-final, hopes that obstacles can be overcome to make sure Saints won’t be playing in front of a fan-free national stadium for the fourth time in this incredible season.
And neither Celtic, Rangers nor the Scottish Rugby Union are understood to have shown an appetite to step in as a host venue.
“I don’t know the ins and outs of it but I just think we should be trying everything possible to get fans into this final,” said Bryson. “We’re not talking about full capacity.
“This is St Johnstone’s second cup final of the season and for no fans to be at either of them would be very disappointing to be honest.
“Even having our families there to enjoy the experience with us would be a big thing.
“I know it’s down south but there were fans indoors to watch the snooker. I don’t see how it can’t happen.
“If it’s going to be at a big stadium like Ibrox, Celtic Park or Murrayfield then yeah, I’d be open to that idea.
“When you’re a kid growing up you want to play a Scottish Cup final at Hampden.
“If you’re asking me what I want to see happen – it’s at Hampden with some amount of fans.”
Meanwhile, with fellow midfielder Ali McCann sure to attract summer attention from clubs in England, as well as possibly the Old Firm, Bryson believes there is merit in the 21-year-old staying with Saints for another season.
“I can see there being a lot of interest in Ali,” said the former Scotland international.
“But St Johnstone is a good place to be just now and there have been plenty of players in the past who have left Scottish football too soon and ended up back here quicker than they would have hoped.
“It’s not a bad thing to get another year’s experience before you move on.
“I couldn’t believe he wasn’t on the young player of the year list but it was pointed out to me that he wasn’t eligible because he’s a Northern Ireland international.
“He would definitely have been in with a shout of winning it otherwise when you look at the season he’s had with us and the international recognition he’s getting.
“He’s been fantastic. I thought he was a really good player when I played against him and I’ve seen the high standards he sets in training every day.
“You know what you’re going to get every game. He’s got a massive future ahead of him. Hopefully he’ll move on to bigger and better things when the time is right for him and St Johnstone.”
Bryson, who spent several years in England with Derby County, believes Saints would be Scotland’s answer to Leicester City if they put the Scottish Cup trophy besides the Betfred Cup one in the McDiarmid Park boardroom.
“It would have to be right up there among the greatest achievements in Scottish football if we win both cups,” he said.
— Scottish Cup (@ScottishCup) May 9, 2021
“I don’t think anyone in their right mind would have put money on that at the start of the season.
“It would be massive and not just something that St Johnstone fans talk about. And it wouldn’t just be in Scottish football.
“Without sounding disrespectful, there are probably people down south who have never heard of St Johnstone.
“It would be a massive story in the history of our game.
“It would be similar to Leicester City winning the league down south. No one expected them to do it. But as players we have put ourselves in a right good position to create history.”