Celtic 'contact SFA over Crawford Allan comments in wake of Hearts match'

Celtic have expressed their dissatisfaction to the Scottish Football Association over comments made by referees chief Crawford Allan in the wake of their 1-0 win over Hearts, according to reports.

Kyogo Furuhashi's goal for Celtic against Hearts that settled the match on December 2.
Kyogo Furuhashi's goal for Celtic against Hearts that settled the match on December 2.

Allan conducted an interview on BBC Radio Sportsound last weekend, saying that Kyogo Furuhashi’s goal was “probably offside” and intimated that referee Bobby Madden made an error of judgement when stopping play while Hearts were on the attack due to Jota’s hamstring injury.

The Daily Mail claims that Celtic were taken aback by Crawford’s public comments and that they have been in touch with the SFA to make their feelings known.

In his radio interview, Allan said: “I’ve said all along since I’ve been in this role — I’ll support my referees and I’ll come out and say if there’s an error as well.

"On Kyogo, is he in front of the defender? Yes, he probably is.

“You’ve then got to look at the angle of the ball and the speed of it in real time, and it is very, very tight. So it’s an understandable decision.”

And on the incident with Jota, Allan continued: “It’s not just head knocks [that can lead to the game being stopped], it’s serious injuries to a player.

“You can argue all day long on whether it is a serious injury or not — but the fact is the player got taken off and replaced.

“Bobby’s decision at the time was, and he was very close, it was clear that the player was in severe pain.

“Is a hamstring a serious injury? Yes it’s debatable. Although where I think there definitely is an error, and I’ve chatted to Bobby about this, is with the re-start.

"By the time Bobby had got the whistle to his mouth, which was only half a second or so, Hearts then had possession of the ball.

“And what should have been done was Hearts should have had the drop ball.”

Allan’s appearance on national radio also irked Hearts manager Robbie Neilson, who tried to contact the head of referee operations after the match on December 2, only for his calls to not be returned. Neilson was told Allan was annual leave, only to hear his comments in public thereafter.

A message from the Editor: Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by Coronavirus impacts our advertisers. If you haven't already, please consider supporting our trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription.