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'That cannot be right': Celtic call for referee explanation after incidents involving Rangers striker

Rangers striker Alfredo Morelos was lucky to remain on the field following three incidents in which he may have picked up a yellow card or worse.

Rangers star Alfredo Morelos grabs at the groin area of Celtic's Ryan Christie, one of three incidents for which he escaped punishment.
Rangers star Alfredo Morelos grabs at the groin area of Celtic's Ryan Christie, one of three incidents for which he escaped punishment.
Image: Jeff Holmes

CELTIC HAVE CALLED for the Scottish FA to allow referee John Beaton to “explain” some of his decisions in their 1-0 defeat to Rangers last weekend, and have requested a meeting with the SFA Chief Executive, Ian Maxwell, as well as the association’s head of refereeing.

Rangers striker Alfredo Morelos was deemed fortunate to remain on the pitch following a sequence of three incidents involving Celtic players, including one in which he appeared to stamp on Anthony Ralston’s back while jumping over the Hoops substitute in pursuit of the ball.

Morelos later tweeted a picture of himself standing in front of Ralston with the full-back writhing in agony in the background.

However, on Thursday, the Colombian escaped retrospective punishment on account of Beaton and his officials claiming to have seen all three incidents, which sparked fury among Celtic supporters.

Former Bhoys striker and BT Sport pundit Chris Sutton described the decision not to punish Morelos as “shambolic” and “buffoonery of the highest order from the SFA.”

Morelos has picked up 13 yellow cards and three reds this term, albeit one of those reds — against Aberdeen — was later rescinded.

While Celtic didn’t refer to any specific incidents in a statement released this evening, their dissatisfaction with some of Beaton’s decisions was laid plain.

The statement read:

“Celtic Football Club is surprised that there will be no disciplinary action taken by the Scottish FA regarding the incidents during the match on December 29, which have been widely addressed in the media.

“It is reported that no action was taken because the match referee saw all of the incidents in question.

Given that the referee took no action at the time, this tends to suggest that such conduct, which in one instance led to a Celtic player, Anthony Ralston, being injured, is acceptable in Scottish football. That cannot be right.

“On the day, Celtic did not play well enough to win the match, something we accept. However, this issue goes beyond the result of the match.

“Celtic is not the only club this season to raise concerns regarding the standard of officiating at matches in Scotland, concerns which have also been shared by many commentators on the game.

In order to fully understand what is going on, Celtic, our supporters, Scottish clubs and the general Scottish football public need transparency in these matters, and we therefore call on the Scottish FA to allow the referee, John Beaton, to explain these decisions publicly as well as any match officials involved in other similar circumstances.

“In the meantime, we have requested a meeting with Scottish FA Chief Executive, Ian Maxwell, and the Association’s Head of Refereeing.”

Gavan Casey, Murray Kinsella and Andy Dunne preview the weekend’s action:


Source: Heineken Rugby Weekly on The42/SoundCloud

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