Dundee Utd ban BBC and STV over Gunning incident

Three-game suspension: Gavin Gunning. Picture: SNS
Three-game suspension: Gavin Gunning. Picture: SNS
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Dundee United will not be doing interviews with the BBC or STV over the controversial Gavin Gunning suspension.

Gavin Gunning was not booked for his tackle on Celtic’s Virgil van Dijk last week, but he was handed a three-match ban after evidence of the incident was shown later on TV.

A spokesman for Dundee United said: “We won’t be doing any interviews with the BBC – or STV for that matter – for the foreseeable future. We want to know who is responsible for what is deemed to be right or wrong – the SFA or the BBC? We want consistency.”

Tangerines manager Jackie McNamara added: “It’s selective evidence which will lead to Gavin missing three games.

“Nothing had been said until it was shown on Sportscene on the Sunday night.

“We’ve been penalised for the way the footage has been edited on the television.

“There were other incidents which went unpunished so what we really need is consistency.

“Joe Ledley stuck an arm out and was spoken to by the referee but nothing has been done about that. It’s not about getting other players into trouble. It’s just about getting consistent decision-making.”

The charge against Gunning was of “violent conduct by kicking or attempting to kick an opposing player, namely Virgil van Dijk”.

Former Blackburn defender, Gunning appeared to aim a kick at the Dutchman after being caught late when making a clearance. Van Dijk did not go down or react to the incident at the time.

Gunning now faces a three-match ban – an automatic two-match suspension plus another game in the Scottish Premiership.

The extra game is a result of it being his second such offence this season. The Irishman received a red card and a two-game ban for a clash with Hibernian midfielder Kevin Thomson last month on his only other appearance this season.

McNamara also hit out at the make-up of the SFA panel who decided Gunning’s fate.

“I’ve no faith in the whole appeal system or how it is run,” said McNamara. “There wasn’t one ex-player on it, but there was an ex-referee.

“This has opened a real can of worms. You now can’t even flick a leg out or it is going to be deemed violent conduct and highlighted by television.”