Former Celtic striker Chris Sutton has had strong words for Scottish football, referees and the Scottish FA following the governing body’s decision not to take action Rangers striker Alfredo Morelos.
The Colombian escaped punishment for altercations with Celtic trio Scott Brown, Anthony Ralston and Ryan Christie in the recent Old Firm clash at Ibrox which Rangers won 1-0.
Each flashpoint was studied by the Scottish FA’s Compliance Officer Clare Whyte with reports that referee John Beaton has seen all three incidents.
The decision prompted a strong column from Sutton in the Daily Record.
The pundit noted how, for the outsider, it looks like the “SFA want Rangers to win the league”.
He believes Morelos deserved three red cards and that it has made Scottish football look like a “stitch-up”.
Sutton wrote: “A friend of mine called on Thursday afternoon after the decision was announced and said, ‘I know there are all these conspiracies in Scottish football, but letting Morelos off just makes it looks like the SFA want Rangers to win the league’.
“I had no answer to him. What could I say? That’s exactly what it looks like.
“If they had applied the rules correctly then El Buffalo would have been on the end of three separate red cards. That means three bans, six games, or even more if they pushed him through the disciplinary points totting up threshold.
“But yet again it looks like the SFA have bottled it.
“They know there would have been a huge outcry from Ibrox, but if that’s the reason Beaton has stuck to his guns then it’s either cowardice or corruption, take your pick. Given the Rangers reaction to the Daniel Candeias red card at St Mirren when they flamed Collum, you have to wonder if the SFA were scared of a similar response this time around.”
He added: “This carry on sends out the wrong message about Scottish football – yet again. What are we dealing with here, the Wild West? Is it a case of anything goes?
“Beaton and the SFA are effectively telling everyone in the game it’s okay to boot a rival player in the nuts. There’s no probem grabbing someone’s private parts – unless you are Steven MacLean.
“It’s fine if you want to stamp on someone. That’s what the SFA are telling the kids in Scotland who are looking to make their way in the game.
“It’s preposterous and genuinely alarming. These are the kind of decisions that are not just influencing young people, they are making Scottish football a laughing stock beyond its own borders.”