Nearly 4,000 fans have signed a petition calling for an end to the ‘anti-Rangers view amongst referees in Scotland’.
The petition was started on Saturday evening in the aftermath of Rangers’ 3-2 defeat to Hibernian at Ibrox, a match which attracted much discussion following the performance of referee John Beaton.
The whistler sent-off Rangers midfielder Ryan Jack with the scores level at 1-1 - Hibs’ Simon Murray cancelling out Alfredo Morelos’ early opener. Hibs took the lead after the red card, following an own goal from Tavernier, and Slivka added a third before Tavernier scored what proved to be a consolation.
It was a foul by Lithuanian Slivka on Graham Dorrans which prompted the melee in the middle of the pitch between both sets of players leading to the controversial sending off.
Jack pulled Dylan McGeouch to the ground before going head-to-head with Anthony Stokes. One angle of footage showed the players squaring up to each other, putting their heads together, while another angle, that of the referee’s, suggested Jack had pushed his head towards Stokes.
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Rangers fans were unhappy with the level of Beaton’s performance throughout the encounter. Early on he booked both Stokes and Rangers defender James Tavernier for a scuffle, with the former aggressively dragging the latter to the ground.
Created by ‘Follow We Will’ on change.org, the petition aims to get 5,000 signatures before being delivered to the SFA if it is met.
The accompanying message reads: “We at Follow We Will are fed up with anti-Rangers refereeing that is happening way too often. So we have gone to the SFA to complain, the thing is we need as many signatures as possible to get them to act. We have already warned them that we’re prepared to go to more senior bodies if they fail to act. The situation, with Mr John Beaton refereeing, against Hibs on the 12/08/17 was the final straw. We want the SFA to completely wipe it out and impose large sanctions on these corrupt referees that do it not just to our club but many others who may also face these type of unfair actions that are further damaging the Scottish game.”