SPFL await Rangers v Hibernian crowd trouble report

Rangers' Ibrox Stadium. Picture: John Devlin

Rangers' Ibrox Stadium. Picture: John Devlin

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THE Scottish Professional Football League is awaiting the match delegate’s report following eye-witness accounts of trouble flaring at Ibrox after Hibernian opened the scoring on Friday night.

Missiles were seen to be thrown at the travelling supporters in the Govan Stand after Scott Robertson’s goal and there were also skirmishes between opposing fans. More stewards were summoned to provide a buffer between the two sets of supporters.

It is the second time in recent weeks that a Friday night match at Ibrox has been marred by supporter unrest. In the aftermath of the abandoned game between Rangers and Hearts on 16 January there was trouble outside the ground, prompting Ann Budge, owner of the Tynecastle club, to call for better segregation of supporters leaving the stadium. “The steps taken outside the stadium were clearly inadequate,” she said at the time.

The SPFL is expected to take receipt on Tuesday of evidence from the match commander, safety officers, and the match delegate.

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Hibs are understood to have raised concerns at the post-match debrief and the matter is expected to be included in the match delegate’s report.

Before the match, which Hibs won 2-0 to go above Rangers into second place in the Championship, there was another fans’ protest against the Rangers board, led by former players John Brown and Nacho Novo.

Haris Vuckic, the Rangers midfielder who is on loan from Newcastle United, admitted it could be strange to play amid an atmosphere of discontent.

“Yeah, sometimes. We just have to get the fans on our side,” the Slovenian said. “The way we’re going to do that is by winning the games. That’s the most important; if you win the games the fans are happy, too.”

Vuckic scored on his Rangers debut against Raith Rovers last weekend and has made a good early impression with the Ibrox support. So much so, in fact, that there was an angry reaction when he was substituted against Hibs.

“Yes, it’s good for me that they give me support,” Vuckic added. “That was the manager’s decision. He wanted fresh legs in the team and that’s his choice. The other players have all welcomed me. They have all been nice to me, so I’m happy at the club.”

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