Ferguson and McGregor found out they'd been banned from radio

BARRY Ferguson and Allan McGregor found out their Scotland careers were over as they listened to the radio, according to players' union chief Fraser Wishart. Wishart yesterday blasted the Scottish Football Association for failing to make direct contact with the Rangers pair, who were banned on Friday from ever representing their country again.

Ferguson and McGregor were also suspended by their club for two weeks without pay after an early-hours drinking session last weekend before responding to being dropped by Scotland by flicking V-signs at cameras during Wednesday night's World Cup qualifier against Iceland. "Nobody contacted the players and I think they were due that courtesy," Wishart told BBC Scotland. "One of the things that really disappointed myself and the players was that they found out via a radio bulletin that they no longer had a Scotland career – on their way to a disciplinary meeting at Rangers. So, I think there were one or two things that could've been handled better.

"The players have been big enough themselves to hold up their hands immediately to apologise to Scotland manager George Burley. We have to draw a line under this somewhere and we're getting to that stage. How long do we kick people when they're down? We've all made mistakes and I'm of the view that you should be given a second chance."

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He added: "They've not had the opportunity to sit down and discuss what went on in Wednesday night's game. Sunday (the drinking session] was dealt with by the manager, quite rightly. If you look at the quotes in the papers on Friday, (SFA chief executive] Gordon Smith said, 'We consider this matter closed' but (SFA president] George Peat then says he wants to know everything and wants to know why the players made the gestures.

"Nobody will ever know, now, what went on in the heads of the players because this action has been taken. As we speak, no-one at the SFA has contacted the players."

And SFA spokesman responded to Wishart's complaint by saying: "We were in direct contact with Rangers."

Former Scotland manager Craig Brown branded Ferguson and McGregor "despicable" and "infantile".

Brown said: "I thought it was a despicable act, first of all to get in the state they were at the hotel – very disrespectful to everyone. They particularly compounded the felony when obviously, sitting in the technical area, they were making infantile signs."

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