Brian Graham facing ban for ‘dive’ that won game

Brian Graham (right) celebrates putting his side in the lead against Inverness. Picture: SNS
Brian Graham (right) celebrates putting his side in the lead against Inverness. Picture: SNS
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ST JOHNSTONE’S Brian Graham has been accused of diving to win his match-winning penalty against Inverness and has been offered a two-match ban by the SFA compliance officer.

The striker went to ground as Caley Thistle goalkeeper Dean Brill slid in, then converted the penalty himself to seal a 1-0 Scottish Premiership victory. Graham was already due to miss his side’s home clash with Dundee United on Saturday under the terms of his loan agreement and that fact could influence St Johnstone’s decision on whether to challenge the ban before the deadline of 3pm today.

Because of the holiday period, any hearing would not take place until next Tuesday and Graham would then also miss games against both Aberdeen and Hamilton if he was unsuccessful. The club said they were considering their position on the matter.

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Inverness manager John Hughes says he has been left “bamboozled” and feels “let down” by the weekend performance of Brian Colvin – and has accused the referee of treating him with “contempt” when he tried to get an explanation for his controversial decisions.

Colvin infuriated the Highlanders by awarding the penalty when Graham tumbled theatrically and, moments after the penalty, the referee showed Caley Thistle midfielder Ross Draper a straight red card when he clashed with Simon Lappin on the halfway line.

Hughes kept quiet in the immediate aftermath of the defeat but said yesterday: “I was cool, calm and collected after the match in what I said but I’ve since watched the footage back and I have to say, having taken my time to form an opinion, I feel real let down by the decisions that were made against my team. My players are absolutely gutted, and no wonder when you look back at the video evidence. It should not have been a penalty – the last time I saw a dive like that a guy had Speedos on!”

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