Murrayfield likely to host Celtic's European qualifiers

Celtic will play European qualifiers at Scottish Rugby's Murrayfield next season should they qualify as expected, BBC Scotland has learned.

Celtic Park is being used for the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games in July.

Neil Lennon's side are currently 21 points clear at the top of the Scottish Premiership.

Uefa Regulation 12.07: Venues

Celtic Park crowd

In principle, a club must play all its matches in the competition at one and the same ground.

Matches may be played either at the ground of the home club or at another ground in the same or another city within the territory of its association, or, if so decided by the Uefa administration and/or the Uefa disciplinary bodies, in the territory of another Uefa member association for reasons of safety or as a result of a disciplinary measure.

This season, Celtic won three Champions League qualifying rounds to reach the group stages of the competition.

Any request by the club to play a Champions League fixture in either England or Ireland next season would have been denied by European governing body Uefa.

Their rules state that Champions League matches must be played "either at the ground of the home club or at another ground in the same or another city within the territory of its association".

Murrayfield, which hosts Scotland's home international rugby matches and Edinburgh's home games in the Pro12 and Heineken Cup, has previously been used as a venue for football.

Hearts played European home ties at Murrayfield between 2004 and 2006 as their Tynecastle pitch was deemed too small for Uefa club competition.

Scottish Rugby will soon replace the Murrayfield playing surface with a hybrid grass.

The pitch was sprayed with garlic in November in a bid to eradicate nematodes, roundworms which cause damage to grass root structure.

And Edinburgh's upcoming home Pro12 match against Ospreys on 28 February has been moved to Boroughmuir's Meggetland ground.