Shay Logan forgives Aleksandar Tonev racist abuse

Shay Logan has revealed he has forgiven Celtic’s Aleksandar Tonev for racially abusing him at Parkhead last September, and the Aberdeen defender insists he wouldn’t be worried about facing the Bulgarian international at the same venue next month.

Aberdeen fullback Shay Logan says he has forgiven Aleksandar Tonev after his racial remark. Picture: Craig Jardine/SNS

That confrontation is possible, as Tonev will have served his seven game ban when the Premiership title challengers clash there on 28 February. It was imposed after Tonev’s racist comment towards Logan during Celtic’s 2-1 win on 13 September but the case dragged on for three months.

Former Manchester City youth player Logan is just happy to put the controversial incident behind him now. However, their next potential meeting could come at a time when Aberdeen are still pushing Celtic hard for the title. It is already shaping up to be a major event and Logan insists he has no intention of carrying any grudges into it.

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Making his first public statement on the incident Logan said: “I forgive him and, for me, the matter is over. It wouldn’t bother me if he walked past me in the street or if I played against him on the pitch. Yes, he did say it but it has been dealt with. I am not a nasty person and would never wish any bad feeling against him.

“It was probably a spur of the moment thing where he said it and regretted it. People just need to know I would never say anything that would hurt a man’s reputation or his footballing career just out of the haste of losing a game. It was said on the pitch and I reported it to Mark Reynolds and then reported it to the referee. It has been dealt with and I am happy with that.”

Meanwhile, Derek McInnes needs no reminding of the problems Aberdeen may face when Dundee visit this afternoon.

The only defeat the Dons have suffered in the last nine games was against Paul Hartley’s side in the Scottish Cup at Dens Park in November. However, eight successive league wins without the loss of a goal have taken the Pittodrie club four points clear of Celtic at the top of the Premiership, albeit the champions have two games in hand.

With all eyes on Aberdeen to see if they can make it nine wins in a row against a side who are full of confidence after thrashing Motherwell 4-1 last week, the Dons boss told the club’s official website: “We are just focusing on the Dundee game and not getting caught up with anything else.

“It will be a tough game. Dundee have matchwinners who can make a difference. We have moved on from the cup defeat. It was a while ago now.

“Funnily enough, we won the league game at Dens Park despite not playing that well and then we lost the cup game when I though our performance was good. Since then, the players have been outstanding for me. But we know Dundee are a good side. They got a good result last week and got back to winning ways.

“But, for us, the next game cannot come soon enough. The players are itching to get back out there in front of a very big crowd cheering us on.”

Only seven points separate the top five sides at the top of the table, an unusual situation which McInnes welcomed. “It is good that there are five teams up there near the top of the league,” said the former St Johnstone and Bristol City boss, who is looking to “bring one or two” players in during the transfer window, including Jeffrey Monakana, who returned to Brighton earlier in the month after a loan spell at Pittodrie in the first part of the season.

“It is right that other clubs are recognised as well as ourselves. I think most people would want to see a competitive league and it is like that with a number of teams doing very well.”