Closed grounds at Old Firm games a last resort - FM
The First Minister held a summit to discuss disorder at Old Firm matches
Scotland's First Minister Alex Salmond says it would be "a council of despair" if Old Firm matches had to be played behind closed doors.
Excluding fans has been suggested as a possible measure to tackle public disorder in and around the derby.
"That would be acknowledgement that this problem cannot be tackled, cannot be defeated, cannot be overcome," said the First Minister.
"I'm determined that shouldn't happen. We have to overcome the problem."
Mr Salmond was speaking after a summit in-which he met with the chief executives of Celtic and Rangers, Scotland's football authorities and Strathclyde Police to discuss public disorder at Old Firm matches.
The summit was called after last week's controversial Old Firm Scottish Cup replay at Celtic Park, which featured several touchline and tunnel confrontations and three red cards.
I don't want it to be an embarrassment for Scotland
Alex Salmond on the Old Firm Scottish League Cup final
"We have to make things better and I believe and respect the determination of people to join in that effort," Mr Salmond told BBC Radio Scotland's Sportsound programme.
The sides next meet in the Co-operative Insurance Cup final on Sunday 20 March.
Mr Salmond described as "excellent" the Scottish Football League's preparations for the final and added: "I think every person in Scotland, every person in Scottish football has a huge amount invested in that fixture. It has to be a friendly final.
"We want to have a game a week on Sunday, which is a showcase for Scotland, a showcase for Scottish football. I want to see our two leading clubs have a passionate encounter but one which is regarded as a showcase and a demonstration of what's best in football.
"I don't want it to be an embarrassment for Scotland."
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