Warburton calls for help from referees after Livingston game


Rangers manager Mark Warburton has called for help from referees to protect his players after the Ibrox side faced a Livingston side that were taking no prisoner’s in Tuesday night’s Petrofac Training Cup quarter final tie win.

On loan Spurs midfielder Nathan Oduwa was on the receiving end of some rather tackles from his opposition counterparts from the first whistle until he was left in the changing room at half time.

Oduwa, who has faced a number of strong and robust tackles since he arrived in Scotland in the aftermath of showboating against Alloa, now seems to be target number one for clubs and within 16 seconds of the quarter final tie against Livingston the Englishman was on the end of a tackle from Kieran Gibbon who went in late and into the ankle of the Rangers man.

It was a red card offence all day long, but despite having a perfectly good view of the incident, referee Andrew Dallas didn’t even show the Livi player a yellow card.

Oduwa, was also at one point close lined by a forearm smash as he tried to dodge past an onrushing Livingston player who was committed to the tackle after being beaten by the pace of the Englishman’s play.

But Warburton, claims that such tackles ruin the game and called on referees to protect his players.

He said: “There are many benefits up here for Nathan and he’s enjoying life in Glasgow and the club and we’re enjoying having him. It is frustrating watching the game and talented players do need some protection. I’m not saying special treatment, but look after them. Some of the tackles were inappropriate.

“We want games to be entertaining and for fans to enjoy it. Nathan’s one of those players who gets you off your seat. You pay your money to watch people like Nathan Oduwa. He was asking for some better protection.”

However, not everyone is very sympathetic towards Oduwa being on the receiving end of tackles like during last night’s game.

Berwick Rangers striker Andy Russell, who has since deleted his twitter account, tweeted: ‘To be fair if Oduwa comes up here acting the big man and playing the clown he’ll be treated like that.’

He added: “….not condoning any tackles he wouldn’t do the stuff he’s doing up here down in England, he’s trying to take the piss out boys.”

Russell’s comments follows that of Alloa’s Colin Hamilton who accused the on loan midfielder of ‘taking the piss’ after showboating against Alloa in Rangers’ 5-1 at the Indodrill back in August.

Now the Berwick man is facing a backlash from Rangers fans over his comments. Some of those comments are listed below – if you are under 18 look away now!

Livingston manager Mark Burchill also seems to downplay some of the tackles in his post match comments to BBC Scotland, the former Celtic striker added: “Did any of my players get sent off? Well, I’m happy with that. It’s a cup tie, two teams are trying to win, there’s a referee in charge. He’s the boss.

“It’s a very, very difficult job being a referee. The first tackle from a Rangers player should have been a yellow card and he let that go, so then you have to let a few more go. It’s a difficult job and I thought he handled it well.”

What are your thoughts?


About Author


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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