Kevin Clancy to referee 2016 Scottish League Cup Final

Fifa referee Kevin Clancy will take charge of his second major final when Hibernian face Ross County in the 2016 Scottish League Cup Final at Hampden Park.

Kevin Clancy (Dundee v Dundee Utd - 2nd January 2016)
Established: Clancy is now in his fourth season as a top-flight referee (Picture from Sky Sports)

KEVIN Clancy has been confirmed as the referee for the 2016 Scottish League Cup Final between Hibernian and Ross County this weekend.

The 32-year-old will take charge of his second major final at Hampden Park on Sunday (KO 15:00 GMT) after the 2014 Ramsden’s Cup showpiece when Rangers lost 1-0 to Raith Rovers at Hibs’ Easter Road stadium.

He will be assisted by Alan Mulvanny – who was the fourth official for the 2013 Scottish Cup Final when Hibs lost 3-0 to Celtic – and Gary Hilland, a former Category One referee turned Specialist Assistant.

Fourth official John McKendrick will be on electronic board duties.

Clancy has previously been the fourth official for two League Cup Finals – in 2013 and 2015 – but will be in the middle at the national stadium for the first time in what will be the biggest game of his career to date.

Kevin Clancy referee (Ross County v Celtic - 24th Jan 2015)
European involvement: Clancy has handled several Europa League games and been behind the goal in Champions League matches (Picture from Sky Sports)

The Glasgow-born whistler was also an additional assistant referee in the 2014 Scottish Cup Final at Celtic Park and was at Hampden Park as recently as January 31 – as fourth official for Ross County’s 3-1 semi-final win over Celtic.

Clancy has so far officiated 33 games in all competitions in 2015-16 – brandishing 137 yellow cards, sending off 11 players and awarding eight penalties.

It will be his fourth Ross County game of the season and he’s been a bad omen so far – having handled their 4-1 home defeat by Celtic in November, 3-2 defeat against St Johnstone in December and 2-0 loss at Celtic Park on February 13.

Clancy has handled two Hibs matches, both at Easter Road, this term – their 1-0 League Cup win over Stranraer in August and 1-1 draw with Falkirk in December, in which he sent off John McGinn but the midfielder’s ban was subsequently rescinded.

Kevin Clancy watches on (Rangers v St Johnstone - 22nd Sept 2015)
Respected: Clancy is widely regarded as a lenient referee who keeps control of games and rarely attracts controversy (Picture from BBC Scotland)

Clancy first took up the whistle in 2000 and was admitted to the Scottish FA five years later.

The Renfrewshire-based official was promoted to a Category One referee in 2009 and – having hugely impressed in the SFL – oversaw his first SPL match in April 2012.

Such was his fast progression, he was even recognised by Fifa – one of seven currently from Scotland on the list – before his promotion to the top-flight had been confirmed.

Among Clancy’s other high-profile appointments was the Championship play-off semi first leg between Hamilton Accies and Falkirk in 2014.

Clancy recently missed out on a place in Willie Collum’s team of officials for Euro 2016 in France in the summer, with Bobby Madden and John Beaton instead selected as additional assistant referees.

Hibernian – second in the Championship under Alan Stubbs – are chasing their first silverware since 2007 and a fourth League Cup win in their 10th final appearance.

Ross County – who only joined the Scottish Football League in 1994 – are yet to win either of the major cup competitions but were runners-up in the Scottish Cup in 2010.

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