Mark Warburton, ex-Rangers boss, ‘dismayed’ at treatment of Celtic’s Ronny Deila

Former Rangers manager Mark Warburton has admitted he was dismayed at the treatment of Celtic counterpart Ronny Deila in the lead-up to the showdown between the two clubs at the Scottish Cup semi-final stage in 2016.

Speaking to the OpenGoal podcast, Warburton said: “Ronny was getting dogs’ abuse from the papers, and I thought it was almost bordering on legal. That’s how I saw it. 
“Some of the headlines, if you remember - Ronny was getting levels of abuse in the media which I just thought were way beyond appropriate.

“So I felt for him. I knew the turmoil would be going on within the camp, and they’d had a couple of dodgy results, but they were still the best team in Scotland.

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“It was just a case of us just being at our best on the day, catching them slightly below their best and one or two events going our way - like Patrick Roberts missing [an open goal] from three yards out.
Warburton, who moved onto Nottingham Forest after his spell at Ibrox, revealed he had been warned about how the media dealt with the two Old Firm clubs on his first day in charge of the Light Blues.

Mark Warburton, left, with Ronny Deila ahead of the Scottish Cup semi-final in April 2016. Picture: SNS Group

“My first day here, I got told by someone very wise who said, ‘it’s good cop, bad cop in Scotland. You can’t have two good cops or two bad cops. Right now Ronny Deila is the bad cop. You could basically go and lose 4-0 and [the media] will give you a positive spin, because you are the good cop at the moment.’

“So the moment Brendan [Rodgers] arrived, I knew straight away [I was the bad cop],” Warburton admitted.

He continued: “This year - remember Brendan has won two Trebles with Celtic - I’ve seen some derogatory comments about Celtic’s performances, and Brendan getting slagged off. How can that possibly be?

“Because right now, Steven [Gerrard] is the good cop.”