IAN Black will be walking a suspension tightrope for the first few weeks of 2015 – with the prospect of two more bans after five already since signing for Rangers.
The midfielder was booked for a foul on Scott Allan and substituted before half-time on Saturday as Rangers suffered their heaviest defeat in 14 years in the 4-0 thrashing by Hibernian.
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It was Black’s fifth SPFL Championship caution following earlier yellow cards against Hibs, Falkirk, Alloa and Hearts.
One more will incur an automatic one-game ban – but Black is also at risk of having to sit out a League Cup tie after picking up bookings in previous fixtures with Queen’s Park and his old club Inverness.
Rangers take on Celtic in the semi-finals at Hampden on 1 February, in the first Old Firm derby for almost three years.
Any disorder from Black which is punished in that fixture will, depending on the result, see him sit out either the final or his team’s first match of the competition next season.
Black’s disciplinary record has been somewhat unsavoury since he joined the Ibrox outfit on a free transfer two and a half years ago.
During Rangers’ successful Third Division campaign, he served two league bans for an accumulation of yellow cards and a sending off at Elgin.
That dismissal came just six weeks after another red card at Dundee United in the Scottish Cup, which meant he missed Rangers’ first tie of last term’s tournament against Airdrie.
By then Black had admitted breaching SFA rules on football betting and had been given a ten match ban, with seven games suspended until the end of the season.
That came in September 2013, while his most recent ban came after his sixth booking of 2013-14 in the first game of this year against Airdrie.
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