Staggering referee decisions after attacks on Rangers star are beyond a joke
Scottish football has long had a reputation for being a bit rougher than the likes of the Premier League or La Liga but some of the decisions taken by referees after an off-the-ball kick and off-the-ball punch on David Bates are beyond laughable.
St. Johnstone striker Chris Kane picked up a yellow card on Tuesday night after kicking the 21-year-old before Falkirk captain Aaron Muirhead was booked in Sunday’s Scottish Cup clash for punching the Gers star.
Both were as clear cases of violent conduct as you’re ever likely to find but somehow both referees decided both only merited a yellow card – as well as ruling out any further action by the Scottish FA’s compliance officer after ‘dealing’ with it.
Nobody is asking for anything particularly special here either, just that referees take proper action with such incidents in the future when in the last few years we’ve seen a Rangers player sent-off for celebrating a goal with a fist-pump and another have two red cards rescinded within the first few months of the season.
There doesn’t seem to be a week go by in Scottish football where referees are the centre of attention for some reason or another – last week it was Neil Lennon’s complaints over a soft penalty decision against his Hibs team – and with an Old Firm clash and Edinburgh derby scheduled for next weekend it’s almost certain that come next Monday morning they will be the hot topic.
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While most of the footballing world is debating the impact of VAR, Scottish football is debating whether it is ok to punch a player while nowhere near the ball.
Surely that must set alarm bells ringing for somebody in power at Hampden.