Rangers and SFA 'fail miserably' as April announcement emerges - Gary Keown
Both Rangers and the Scottish Football Association (SFA) have “failed miserably” in their handling of the punishment of Craig McPherson, according to The Scottish Mail on Sunday journalist Gary Keown.
Rangers women’s assistant McPherson was handed a six-match ban by the SFA (13 April) for headbutting Celtic women’s manager Fran Alonso following their 1-1 draw last month.
Along with the ban, the club reportedly dealt with the manner privately, with the boss allowed to continue in his role.
Discussing the “paltry” punishment handed to McPherson, Keown wrote for The Scottish Mail on Sunday (Page 102, 23 April): “It’s about football setting an example and showing that it will not tolerate behaviour towards opponents that goes beyond the boundaries – behaviour, by the way, that is then copied at public parks and playgrounds nationwide.
“In the case of McPherson, it has failed miserably. No matter how many folk say he’s such a nice guy normally, it sends out some message when openly giving someone the malky on the pitch ends in barely any punishment from anyone at all.”
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There have been plenty of dark moments in Scottish football, and this McPherson episode is the latest. Emotions often get the better of people in football, particularly when it comes to a fierce rivalry such as Rangers versus Celtic.
But emotions need to be kept in check in such circumstances, especially for coaches, who are supposed to be setting an example for their players.
The SFA have come under constant criticism for their handling of various issues over the years, and they haven’t really helped themselves here, with a much lengthier ban perhaps more fitting for the shocking act.
Rangers could have also made an example of McPherson to ensure such an incident does not happen again. Hopefully the coach learns from the incident with his ban, regardless of its length, with these actions not wanted in the sport.
And despite it being only six matches, it should at least serve as a warning for other people not to get involved in this ugly side of the game.
In other Rangers news, Barry Ferguson has tipped the Gers to make a move for one Premier League goalkeeper ahead of Allan McGregor’s likely retirement this summer.