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Rangers trio to face SFA over Scottish Cup incidents

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Rangers trio Ally McCoist, Madjid Bougherra and El-Hadji Diouf will face a hearing and learn what punishment they will receive on Tuesday for their part in last month’s fracas after the 1-0 Scottish Cup defeat to Celtic.

The Scottish Football Association’s disciplinary committee will convene and discuss the events of the 2nd March match, which resulted in First Minister Alex Salmond hosting a summit at the request of Strathclyde Police.

Assistant manager McCoist and Celtic manager Neil Lennon were charged with misconduct after a touchline scuffle between the pair at the final whistle of the fixture at Parkhead. Rangers appealed against McCoist’s two-match ban, while Lennon was already the subject of a four-match ban and the charge triggered an additional suspension. The SFA later conceded Lennon’s ban would run concurrently, rather than consecutively, following a legal challenge by Celtic.

McCoist will now learn his fate tomorrow, with the prospect of the ban being upheld, increased or reduced. However it is expected that the Rangers assistant manager will receive a two match touchline ban.

Rangers defender Madjid Bougherra and striker El Hadji Diouf face charges of ‘misconduct of a significantly serious nature’. Madjid Bougherra manhandled referee Callum Murray on two occasions during the game, once after Steven Whittaker was being shown a red card, and after Bougherra was being shown a red also, appearing to try to prevent the referee from showing his cards.

Diouf was sent off after the final whistle for comments made to the referee, but refused to leave the field and instead walked over to the Rangers supporters and against the orders of Stewards and Police, the Senegalese striker threw his top into the crowd, before being led away by a member of the Rangers back room staff.

Diouf was also alleged to have intentionally blocked the Celtic physio as he ran onto the pitch to treat an injured Celtic player, an incident which sparked a touchline bust up between Neil Lennon, Diouf and the Rangers assistant Ally McCoist.

However the on loan Blackburn player could face further punishment for his comments about referee Callum Murray to French broadcaster Canal+.

The Senegal international said, “The Celtic match where I got a red card was incredible. At first I went to see the ref as I was being kicked all over the park. The ref said to me ‘You don’t have the right to speak to me’, which annoyed me. The Celtic manager (Neil Lennon) insulted me, I answered back and I got a yellow card whereas he got nothing at all. You have to say the ref messed up the game with cards flying everywhere. I know it must be tough for him but still, I guess some refs find it hard to handle these type of games.

“At the end I told the ref he was the worst ref I’ve ever had so he gave me another card. I said ‘you can give me as many cards as you like, the match is over now’. I know it’s not good to get cards but I’m only suspended for the cup, not the league.”

However what Diouf failed to realise was that if he is charged with and found guilty of ‘misconduct of a significantly serious nature’ he can be banned for both league and cup games.

He added, “At the end I wanted to give my shirt to our fans because even though I hate losing, I felt we lost in a dignified way. We lost 1-0 with nine players in the end and officials who were against us.”

With six games remaining any ban imposed on both players will hamper Rangers’ title aspirations, with the club on the bare bones as it is.

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About Author

scotzine

Andy Muirhead is the Editor of Scotzine and the Scottish Football fanzine FITBA. He is the Scottish Football columnist for The Morning Star and has written for a number of other publications including ESPN, Huffington Post UK, BT Life's a Pitch and has had his work featured in the Daily Record, The Scotsman and the Daily Mail.

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