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Celtic Slams SFA Discipline Committee

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Celtic tonight issued an unambiguous statement in support of Virgil Van Dijk, but one which slammed the SFA Discipline Committee for its inexplicable decision not to cite Calum Butcher for the offence in which the Dutch defender was sent off, and Paul Paton was dismissed in a case of mistaken identity.

The Celtic statement read “It seems completely illogical and fundamentally unfair that, in an incident where mistaken identity has been claimed, the Dundee United player now identified clearly as being involved in the incident appears to have no case to answer – and would be available to play in the League Cup final and the Scottish Cup replay between the two teams – while Celtic’s player may potentially miss both of those matches.”

This is not the first time the disciplinary committee has come in for deserved criticism from our club this season.

The scandalous decision to ban Alexander Tonev when there was no supporting evidence in his racism case also resulted in an angry statement from the club.

This latest incident comes about in the aftermath of the Dundee Utd cup quarter final at the weekend, where three players were dismissed and two penalty kicks awarded.

The Dundee Utd player, Aidan Connolly, has been accused of diving to win his side’s spot kick, which was converted by Nadir Ciftci, who has been cited for his petulant kick at Scott Brown, and offered a two match ban. Footage of the penalty incident does suggest he went down easily.

Connolly is not yet facing a case to answer, possibly because the media spotlight has not been shone on him as it was on Celtic players earlier this year.

Once again, the SFA Compliance Officers appear to be following their own logic.

In the aftermath of Tonev’s ban, a string of players have been allowed to play games despite violent conduct, where “not proven” verdicts have been given.

Celtic go into a tough spell over the next few weeks – playing the Tannadice club three times – already missing a host of players, although Lustig and Commons are both said to be on their way back to full fitness. Indeed, it might be said that Dundee Utd are the last realistic barrier between Ronny Deila’s team and a domestic treble.

Scott Brown was not cited in relation to Sunday’s match despite hysterical voices in the media ludicrously suggesting he had instigated the Van Dijk / Butcher incident. The captain hit back at the armchair critics at the weekend, telling them to “man up.”

If they do it will be the first time.

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  • carlos says:

    I have never bought in to the theory that the SFA is biased against celtic. However this year its hard to argue that they are anything but, as highlighted by the tonev decision which was a disgrace.

  • ricky Buchanan says:

    wwhy blow the mayhem aboout the decision we all know van dyk suspension is gonna stand and the othere one cant cos of mistaken identity cant possibly which means that dundee united are notgonna get any suspensions where celtic will with the sfa and scottish league s attitude to how they think the game should be played ffs its a mans sport

  • edward says:

    If Butcher is not charged then obviously Van Dijk’s case will be dismissed.If not dismissed then clearly the SFA are sending a message to Celtic that fairness does not apply to Celtic AND that discrimination is alive and well at the SFA.

    • Fitzroy says:

      Agree it would be logical for Butcher not to be cited if VVD red is going to be rescinded. We’ll need to wait until Thursday to find out. More importantly we clearly need to improve on last two performances. Why he perseveres with Stokes is beyond me. His passing, free kicks and corners, not to mention his hair are terrible. Lustig is also a huge miss.

      • yogithebear67 says:

        Couldn’t agree more, especially about Stokes (his “hair” by the way is an improvement)

  • joe mccormack says:

    Operation stop the treble well underway.

    First of all the penalty…Connolly blatantly dives anticipating a tackle from Stokes that was never made. Thomson was blowing his whistle before the United player hit the ground, despite having a close up view of the incident. This of course is a referee who has no idea of the advantage rule…..unless it disadvantages Celtic as in the recent semi final. He’s supposed to be our best….God help us.
    The linesman fingers the wrong United player involved in the tussle with Virgil… probs there, red card rescinded no case to answer.
    Step forward the real culprit, retrospective red card………, its another no case to answer. Whaaaaaaaat the……..are they kidding?
    If they had rescinded Virgil’s card then I may have, obtusely, followed their thought process……what process. This is as blatant piece of bias as I’ve seen from the SFA, and I’ve been around for a long time.
    So Virgil appears on Thursday to appeal a red card for his involvement in an incident where the other party has already been cleared of any guilt…..if you look at the players as they disentangle its clear that the United player clearly has a couple of additional kicks at Virgil.
    Another shameful SFA cock up.

    It’s high time PL started shouting from the rooftops, this is beyond reason.

  • Martin Blythe says:


  • Euan says:

    I thought,Mr Davidson who refereed in Scotland in the 70s,and whos display in the 1970 cup final,had Jock Stein Fuming, cant hold a candle to Craig Thomson and his refereeing and linesman pals,this is to me not just ‘honest mistakes’there is more to this………………

  • SAOR ALBA says:

    I totally agree with you Edward. Virgil Van Dijk’s case has to be dismissed if Butcher is not charged. I do not believe either of them deserved even a yellow card, but this should be the maximum that they should have got. A red for each was total nonsense and is the result of a very stupid linesman getting involved and getting everything wrong – total incompetence or perhaps something else? The referee asked his linesman several times if he was certain and should feel he was badly let down by his total incompetence. On the other hand, he is in charge and should perhaps have consulted the other linesman, or indeed the 4th official, if he was in doubt.

    Claiming that there is no mechanism to deal with Butcher’s situation is the SFA putting themselves above the law. There should be a mechanism.
    I believe that all our clubs should now use lawyers, or form a union to do so, so that the SFA can be held to account. Had Fergus McCann still been around at Celtic, they would have certainly been held to account, no doubt about that.

    With the Connolly incident, Stokes pulled his foot away and there was absolutely no contact with him whatsoever. Connolly anticipated contact, as Joe points out above. It was a DIVE – no doubt about it. I have looked at the video in various degrees of slow motion. Even on the basis of probability, it was a dive. I thought the SFA were fond of “the basis of probability”.

    Ciftci has form already and in my opinion is the real culprit in all of this. I believe that one reason that Celtic never thought of signing him is his disgusting attitude and lack of respect to opposing players, not just the opponents on Sunday. I have seen United on quite a few occasions this season on my travels and I find this player to have some talent, but I do not like watching his stupid interactions on the park. I wish he would concentrate on the football. He should accept the 2 game ban as he tried to seriously injure Brown. If he doesn’t accept it, the ban should be increased.

    Incidentally, no SPFL club should have a pitch as bad as the Tannadice one. This is meant to be a professional game. Credit to Motherwell who have improved their surface. I wonder if Hampden will be suitably improved for the Cup Final. I bet you are all wondering too.

    The SFA are not fit for purpose and should be removed and replaced with people who have IQ’s suitable to take on posts of responsibility. This is me being polite.

    Scottish Football is at the mercy of total incompetents.

  • Corktim says:

    The sfa bias against ur club started last thur when Cicfti was proven not guilty to his charge,if Dundee Utd were playing anyone else it would have been a different story,also Thompson he definitely wore his sevco heart on his sleeve,and not for the first time when officiating at games in which Celtic were involved what a cheat,f…k the sfa.

    • SAOR ALBA says:

      I do not believe this referee to be biased. He makes mistakes and he should not have been swayed by an incompetent linesman here, but biased? Don’t get carried away.
      Members of the SFA are biased and have been shown to favour one particular club at the expense of ALL others and certain referees are plainly corrupt and biased, but I do not believe that Mr Thomson is.
      This is merely an opinion, based on observation.

  • Alex says:

    Sfa scum hate em .. It’s simple we have to win the hard way play better than utd outplay them start to finish same as other teams we are Celtic fuck the refs

  • Neutral says:

    First off , broon should have been off along with cifti , no ifs or buts , van diijk went over the ball and stamped on a player twice (straight red ) the retalliation some refs would have taken action but dont think he deserved to go he was rightly incensed with the tackle !! ( he tried to knee him but failed in my eyes) the penalty some people might argue it wasnt hand to ball but if it happened against my team i would be looking for him to be sent off !! But to imply bias against celtic this season is absolutely hilarious and tells me you all have blinkers on , incapable of taking a step back and looking at it from a neutral perspective .

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