Why Ryan Porteous red card in Rangers v Hibs clash was the correct decision

Hibernian manager Jack Ross says he understood Nick Walsh’s decision to send Ryan Porteous off at Ibrox on Sunday, while not necessarily agreeing with it.

Hibs defender Ryan Porteous was previously sent off against Rangers for a foul on Borna Barisic at Easter Road in December 2019. (Photo by Alan Harvey / SNS Group)

There was no such equivocation from his Rangers counterpart Steven Gerrard who believed Porteous could have broken Joe Aribo’s leg had he made full contact with the midfielder with his full-blooded 30th minute challenge.

Section 12.3 of the Laws of the Game, as set down by the International Football Association Board, backs up Gerrard’s view of the incident and underlines why referee Walsh was correct to reach straight to his top pocket for a red card.

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It states: ‘A tackle or challenge that endangers the safety of an opponent or uses excessive force or brutality must be sanctioned as serious foul play.

‘Any player who lunges at an opponent in challenging for the ball from the front, from the side or from behind using one or both legs, with excessive force or endangers the safety of an opponent is guilty of serious foul play.’

As Hibs defender Porteous sought to prevent Aribo from breaking clear as he ran onto a sublime pass from Ianis Hagi, he lunged in on the Nigerian international from the side with a leading left leg and went to ground.

While Porteous did make contact with the ball and only minimal contact with Aribo, the challenge was made with excessive force and clearly carried potential danger for the safety of the Rangers player. Walsh had no option but to deem it as serious foul play and dismiss Porteous.

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