Rangers’ Rob Kiernan offered two-mtch ban for ‘punch’

Rob Kiernan has been offered a two-match ban by the Scottish Football Association. Picture: SNS
Rob Kiernan has been offered a two-match ban by the Scottish Football Association. Picture: SNS
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Rangers defender Rob Kiernan has been offered a two-match ban by the Scottish Football Association after being charged with allegedly striking St Johnstone’s Steven Anderson.

TV pictures appeared to show the Light Blues centre-back aiming a punch at the Perth defender during Wednesday’s 1-1 draw at McDiarmid.

Kiernan has until Wednesday to decide whether he will accept the punishment - leaving him free to face Celtic in Saturday’s Old Firm derby at Ibrox.

Kiernan lashed out at Anderson late in the first half as the pair tussled at a corner, with replays showing the former Wigan defender swinging a hand at Anderson’s midriff.

The £2million Fulham target had earlier been at fault for Saints’ equaliser when he gifted the ball to Steven MacLean, who cancelled out Barrie McKay’s opener.

SFA compliance officer Tony McGlennan has now issued Kiernan with a notice of complaint, which alleges he breached disciplinary rule 200 “by striking an opponent, namely Steven Anderson of St Johnstone, upon the body”.

If Kiernan accepts the two-game punishment, he will sit out the William Hill Scottish Cup tie against Motherwell at Ibrox on January 21, as well as the return clash against the Steelmen in the Ladbrokes Premiership at Fir Park a week later.

If he decides to contest the charge, a principle hearing will take place next Thursday.

Anderson has already warned, though, that the governing body will likely throw the book at the Gers defender.

Speaking after Wednesday’s game, he said: “If that’s the way he wants to play then it’s up to him - but he is going to get done for it.

“It was a corner and he caught me in the ribs. Brian Easton saw it as well. It was a clear punch on me.

“You can’t do that in football games. I’m not bothered but if it gets highlighted then he deserves it.

“Nothing happened before it. I was marking him at a corner and there was a bit of argy bargy - then he punched me.

“The referee said he did not see it and you can understand it because there was a lot going on in the box.”

But Rangers boss Mark Warburton has defended his man, saying: “There’s nothing in that.

“I’ve watched it again - it’s a push. If you punish that there will be more judicial panels than you could possibly imagine.”