Peter Hartley has issued a statement after the SFA’s Compliance Officer launched a probe into comments he made about Rangers and former player Fabio Cardoso.
The Motherwell captain, previewing his side’s clash with the Gers this weekend, commented on the fiery Betfred Cup semi final meeting between the two teams last season, saying: “When we cross the white line on Sunday, there won’t be much respect shown to be honest.
“I think [Ryan Bowman] broke a boy’s nose, didn’t he, so that was fun, to watch him weeping.”
Hartley was referring to an incident in that Hampden semi final in which Motherwell striker Ryan Bowman caught the Portuguese defender in the face, leaving him with a broken nose.
Photos showed Cardoso with a bloodied nose in the aftermath of the incident, and the 24-year-old was sidelined for weeks.
In a statement posted on his Twitter account, Hartley said: “I apologise for the comments I made in the media today.
“What I said falls below the standards expected of the captain of Motherwell Football Club.
“I do not condone violent behaviour or wish to trivialise an injury suffered by a fellow professional.
“I got caught up in the excitement of preparing for a big game and said something I regret.
“We will be competitive on Sunday but we will always try and play within the rules.”