Celtic have asked the Scottish league to bring forward the winter break after sports events in Scotland were effectively made spectator-free for up to three weeks.

Top-flight clubs have been discussing the implications of new restrictions introduced by the Scottish government in a bid to slow the spread of the Omicron variant of Covid-19.

New rules will kick in on St Stephen's Day and impact the festive football fixtures, which include top-flight derbies in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Dundee in the first few days of 2022.

They will also affect the double-header between Glasgow Warriors and Edinburgh in the United Rugby Championship.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced that public events would be limited to up to 200 indoors and 500 outdoors, admitting that would make football matches "effectively spectator-free".

The Premiership is due to shut down for three weeks from 3 January, with top-flight teams returning to action in the Scottish Cup in the fourth weekend of the year.

To speed up the break, clubs and the Scottish Professional Football League would also need to reach agreement with Sky Sports, which is due to screen four matches before the break, including Rangers' trip to Celtic Park on 2 January.

Celtic and Rangers are already facing fixture disruption in the coming week after Covid-hit St Mirren requested postponements of games against both Glasgow sides.

A Celtic statement read: "In light of today’s announcement regarding supporters attending matches, Celtic can confirm that it has today requested that the SPFL bring forward the scheduled winter break and reschedule the fixtures affected by the regulations announced.

"The game owes it to supporters to explore all opportunities to maximise the prospect of all supporters being able to attend matches and support the game they love."

Speaking just before the announcement, managers from Celtic, St Johnstone and Aberdeen all spoke out in favour of bringing the winter break forward.

Celtic boss Ange Postecoglou said: "I don’t like football played behind closed doors. We had a season of it in Japan, I just didn’t enjoy it. It becomes a different game, a different environment for the players."