With ten in a row drawing closer, there is a suspicion among Celtic supporters that the authorities will play their part in trying to deny what would be an incredible achievement, one obtained without financial doping, without establishment assistance, and without media back up.
This season, there is a real fear that referees will play their part again, as we have already seen Celtic players become the victims of over enthusiastic opponents, who have not been penalised for their actions.
This, of course, is nothing new.
Back at the start of the decade, with Rangers balancing precariously on the edge of extinction, the SFA decided that they had to protect the brand, to make the playing field a little uneven , in order to ensure the soon to be defunct Ibrox club got as much money as they could.
Of course, we all know how it ended up, the club was forced into liquidation, owing an amount of money to various creditors and a hasty asset sale before those creditors could be satisfied allowed a new club to come along, and with a compliant media, a corrupt governing body and around forty one clubs who were prepared to turn a blind eye, the cancer that has threatened to destroy Scottish football has returned, and its returned in a more aggressive form.
If you think ten in a row is certain, if you think that this achievement has somehow been diluted due to the other half of the extinct Old firm being “relegated ” to allow Celtic a free run at champions League money, and that somehow there is no competition, try to remember that not all opponents are clearly marked in a football kit at the other end of the field.
Try, instead, to remember what happens when the authorities go all out to protect the brand, and to do that, lets travel back to season 2009-10, when we saw exactly how they can do that.
Prepare to scream and shout, but above all, prepare to be ready not to let them get away with it again.
From Rooster 1967, wherever he is now, here are fifty honest mistakes..a work that should stand alongside any historical record of football in Scotland
The Top 50 Honest mistakes since Aug 09 – Oct 10 which favoured Rangers and went against Celtic. This has been since the start of last season which is only in a 15 month period.
Celtic fans, ex players and some of the media have stated that Season 09/10 more than any other season has seen a lot of key decisions go against Celtic and for Rangers. For evidence of these decisions a list has been compiled highlighting the Top 50 Honest mistakes by the SFA officials since the start of Season 09/10 (Aug 2009).
The 50 Honest Mistakes are categorised as follows:-
- 18 VERY STRONG PENALTY CLAIMS DENIED (for Celtic or for Rangers opponents).
- 9 GOALS INCORRECTLY CHOPPED OFF (for Celtic or for Rangers opponents),
- 6 SOFT PENALTIES (for Rangers where opposing team complains about decision.)
- 4 NO RED CARD (for Rangers player when proper rules being applied should have resulted in red.)
- 4 NOT EVEN A BOOKING (for Rangers players when there was a case for a red.)
- 3 FOR THE SAME OFFENCE – CELTIC PLAYER BOOKED. OPPONENT OR RANGERS PLAYER NOT BOOKED.
- 2 HARSH RED CARDS (for Celtic players.)
- 1 UNUSUAL DECISION (Celtic goalkeeper penalised for handling ball inside the box!)
- 1 LACK OF SHARPNESS/PACE OF ASSISTANT REFEREES (Keane offside again.)
- 2 WILL GIVE REF BENEFIT OF DOUBT BUT SEEN THEM GIVEN.
Within this list are:-
- quotations from 3 SPL managers (Levein, Gannon & May) making admission to the poor decisions going against Celtic.
- numerous quotes from 6 managers (Craig Brown, Gus McPherson, Peter Houston , Terry Butcher, Billy Reid & Jocky Scott) complaining publicly about decisions that have favoured Rangers.
- an apology from a referee admitting he made an error of judgement by not awarding Celtic a penalty against Rangers.
- quotes from ex ref Kenny Clark admitting Bougherra should have been red carded against Celtic and admitting ref was wrong to award Rangers a penalty against Celtic.
- a quote from ex Rangers captain, Richard Gough admitting a Celtic goal should have stood against Rangers.
- a quote from current Rangers player Kyle Lafferty admitting a red card was harsh for Celtic player in a clash with him.
- a quote from ex ref admitting “it was a penalty all day” which was then not awarded.
- a quote from Andy Goram admitting Rangers should not have been awarded a penalty against Celtic.
All of these quotes are within the last 15 months since the start of last season.
Note – Dougie McDonald features in 17 out of the 50 Honest Mistake decisions and this does not include the white lie.
The Top 50 Honest mistakes since Aug 09 – Oct 10 which favoured Rangers and went against Celtic. This has been since the start of last season.
- Clear 2nd goal for Motherwell chopped off against Rangers. No need for various views of this one. No marginal decision or checking replays. Forbes was 3 yards onside. Former Rangers captains summarising on ESPN Butcher & Hendry agree goal was clearly onside. Daily Record “Craig Brown last night accused bungling linesman of costing Motherwell a famous victory over Rangers. The furious Fir Park boss had to be dragged away from John Gilmore at full-time as he protested the controversial decision to disallow a second-half Ross Forbes goal for offside. Forbes poked home Stephen Craigan’s knockdown to seemingly put his side 2-0 up and on the brink of a first home win over Gers for seven years. But Gilmour flagged despite TV pictures later clearly showing the goal should have stood. Well boss Brown was in no doubt his side had been robbed and said: “I’ve seen the TV evidence and it indicates the goal was OK.” (GOAL CHOPPED OFF)
10 February 2010 – SPL game. Rangers would have been 2-0 down but drew 1-1.
- Ref apologises for not awarding Celtic a blatant penalty at Ibrox.
Davie Weir chops Maloney down in box in first Old Firm game of season. Ref waves play on and Rangers go up the park and score. STV website and various media – “Old Firm referee Craig Thomson has admitted he’s ‘disappointed’ at getting his decision wrong when he decided not to award Celtic a penalty in the 12th minute. Hugh Dallas said: ‘Craig and I have had our post match de-brief. Whilst I would compliment Craig for his overall handling of yesterday’s encounter, he is disappointed at his error of judgement when he decided against awarding a penalty to the visiting team in the 12th minute.'” Motherwell manager Jim Gannon later said: “Right now there is a question mark over the standard of our refereeing, and it affects the SPL table. After the last Old Firm game Hugh Dallas had to defend the referee [Craig Thomson]. But the result of that match might have been different had the ref got the big decisions correct.” (STONEWALL PEN DENIED) 4 October 2009 – SPL game. Celtic lost game 2-1 and were 1-0 at time of incident
- Broadfoot dives and is awarded penalty for Rangers against Celtic.
Eurosport website “There was the inevitable Glasgow derby controversy though as referee Willie Collum was conned into awarding a penalty when substitute Kirk Broadfoot dived into Daniel Majstorovic, with Miller converting to make it 3-1 with 24 minutes remaining.” Daily Express “Lennon fizzing when Collum gave Rangers a penalty – despite having his back to the incident when Kirk Broadfoot dived inside the box. When asked if he thought Collum had even seen the penalty claim. Lennon was adamant “No,” he added. “If you look at him, I don’t think he saw I it.”The Telegraph“ Collum awarded a penalty kick to Rangers without appearing to see it properly. Had he had a clear view he would surely have been more likely to book Kirk Broadfoot – who had replaced Papac at the restart – with simulation at a challenge from Majstorovic. BBC website:- Former referee Kenny Clark says Willie Collum was wrong to award a penalty to Rangers in Sunday’s 3-1 win over Celtic. (the Sun) Former Rangers goalkeeper Andy Goram says Willie Collum got it wrong when awarding a penalty against Celtic but that the Parkhead side’s striker (the Sun) The Sun “John Hartson’s column Willie Collum’s decision to award Rangers a penalty last week has forced Hartson into a rethink after years of dismissing the notion. “Now I fear that there is a conspiracy against my old club,” he admits in today’s paper. “How else can anyone explain Willie Collum’s penalty decision in the Old Firm match? “What rankles with me is that Collum just didn’t see the incident. His back was turned and he had absolutely no idea what was going on in the box. “If he had a clear view of the flashpoint and pointed to the spot that would have been a different matter. “Celtic fans might not have liked the decision but we could all have put it down to human error. After all it’s not the first time that Celts have been on the wrong end of an honest blunder in an Old Firm derby. ( SOFT PEN AWARDED) 22 October 2010 – SPL game. Celtic lost game 3-1 and were 2-1 down at time of incident.
- Perfectly good Marc Antoine Fortune goal chopped off against Rangers Sky Sports Moment of the Match: “Marc-Antoine Fortune’s wrongly disallowed goal could have changed the game and the title race.” News of the World Richard Gough reflecting on the disallowed goal““Look at the last game, the one where Celtic have had the Fortune goal disallowed. “I admit that it does look like a goal. The referee (Steve Conroy) has not ruled the goal disallowed because he’s a Protestant or a Catholic. “He’s made an honest call and guys make mistakes.” (GOAL CHOPPED OFF)
3 January 2010 – SPL game. Celtic 1 Rangers 1.
- Goal for Celtic incorrectly chopped off for offside.
Celtic were 3-0 up against St Johnstone and had a goal wrongly chopped off for offside. Scottish Herald “They had a Joe Ledley goal wrongly disallowed which would have made it 4-0” Daily Record “They were set to press cruise control when Joe Ledley rounded Graeme Smith to score a fourth after half an hour but he was wrongly flagged for offside.” The Celts boss said: “The referee had a very good game, actually. However, the incident involving Joe Ledley looked onside, a perfectly good goal from a good ball and a good run. The official got it wrong but let’s leave it at that, eh?” The Scotsman “The midfielder was flagged offside by assistant referee Willie Conquer as he broke through the St Johnstone defence, but his run had been well timed.” The game changed as 30 seconds after Celtic’s goal was disallowed St Johnstone pulled one back to 3-1. (GOAL CHOPPED OFF) 27 Oct 2010 League Cup 3-2 Celtic.
- Perfectly good Hamilton equaliser is chopped off 10 minutes to go.
Sunday Mail “ANGRY Accies boss Billy Reid last night blasted the officials for denying his side a deserved draw at Ibrox. Hamilton were trailing to Mo Edu’s first-half opener when James McArthur knocked home Alex Neil’s cross 12 minutes from time. But linesman Steven Craven flagged for offside against sub Joel Thomas – even though McArthur was well onside. And ref Stevie O’Reilly chalked the goal off to hand Rangers a 1-0 victory. Raging Reid said: “I don’t think anyone could deny we deserved a point. “I haven’t seen McArthur’s goal on the monitor but I don’t need to.”I knew Joel was offside when the cross came in but James wasn’t. He came from deep, timed his run well and I’m told he was three yards onside.“I was celebrating the goal so I’m disappointed it wasn’t given. I had a word with the ref but he had a hard decision.”Some they get right, some they get wrong. He called this one wrong. Sunday Herald – “Rangers doing just enough to win, with a dubious officiating call thrown in: this game was like the 2009/10 SPL season in microcosm.”(GOAL CHOPPED OFF) 3 Apr 2010 Rangers won 1-0.
7. Dundee United player admits he handled ball in injury time. No penalty. 1-1 in injury time in a game that Celtic also had a valid goal disallowed, Darren Dods arm moves in direction of the ball inside box and Steve Conroy waves play on. Darren Dods later admits he handled it and Levein said he was disappointed Dods did not catch it. Scotland on Sunday “Much later, a couple of minutes into injury time in fact, an Andreas Hinkel cross hit Darren Dodds on the arm and many a spot-kick has been given in such circumstances. Asked about it later, Levein offered a cheeky response: “I’ve spoken to Darren about it and he said he was really disappointed he never held it. Dodds said: “The ball hit my head and then hit my thumb.” That’s that, then. It should have been a penalty.” (STONEWALL PEN DENIED) 13 Sep 2009 SPL game 1-1 draw.
- Rangers heading out of cup 3-2 down and awarded a very soft penalty.
The Times “ Rangers also got lucky to a degree — the penalty awarded to them after 61 minutes, when Stuart Elliott was judged to have stopped the ball illegally while lying on the ground, looked harsh.”
Scotsman – “They needed a touch of good fortune to equalise when referee Charlie Richmond rather harshly penalised Hamilton debutant Stuart Elliott for handball, awarding the spot-kick from which Kenny Miller converted.”
Hamilton player lying on ground while trying to move his hand away hand ball penalty given. A gift given to Rangers by ref to keep them in the Cup. It’s okay saying Richmond denied Miller a penalty in the replay but if it was not for the ludicrous decision in first game there would have been no replay. (SOFT PEN AWARDED) 10 Jan 2010 Scottish Cup 3-3 draw
- Rangers awarded ludicrous 2nd penalty in match after Boyd dives.
Losing 1-0 in a Scottish Cup quarter final Rangers were awarded 2 very soft penalties. Peter Houston was livid at both awards but especially the second BBC website:- “I am disappointed and I just wonder if the penalties would have been given at the other end. I hope they would have been,” said the Dundee United manager. “Dougie McDonald is an honest referee in normal circumstances, I think he is one of the best in Scotland. But I was disappointed that he got there early to give the penalty kicks.” And the United manager added: “The second one, if we are going to give penalty kicks for that, we’ll get penalty kicks left, right and centre on a regular basis.(SOFT PEN AWARDED) 14 Mar 2010 Scottish Cup 3-3 draw
- Last minute pen awarded to Rangers. Offence took place outside box. Drawing 1-1 with Hearts Craig Thomson awards Rangers last minute penalty. The offence took at least a yard outside the box. Daily Mail – “The Tynecastle side thought the penalty was harsh, arguing that the foul by Ismael Bouzid on Steven Naismith was committed outside the penalty box. Telegraph – “and the referee – poured salt into Hearts’ wounds in the final minute of normal time when Mr Thomson judged that Ismael Bouzid had fouled Steven Naismith inside the box, a dubious judgment call at best. (SOFT PEN AWARDED) 24 Aug 2009 SPL game Rangers won 2-1 as a result of the late penalty award.
- Celtic score in injury time winner v Falkirk but wrongly disallowed. Daily Record – “Celtic fans yelped in frustration – and their mood would not have improved when television replays showed assistant Lawrence Kerrigan was wrong to flag for offside when Samaras was played in behind the Bairns defence in injury time.” “His shot may have been blocked by Olejnik but it dropped to McDonald who poked the ball into the net only to see the flag fluttering along his line of vision. To be fair, Celtic players kept their protests to a minimum.” The Sun – “TV pictures showed that linesman Andy Tait was wrong to flag, but Mogga insisted: Note different newspapers quote different linesman so unsure which one raised the flag. (GOAL CHOPPED OFF). 8 Nov 2009 SPL 3-3 draw
- Kyle Lafferty assaults Hinkel with a horrendous tackle. Stays on park!
Mowbray is seen squirming with his hand in hands after seeing the tackle which could have been career threatening. 99 times out of 100 this tackle is an automatic red. Daily Mail “Then came the Lafferty-Hinkel incident, arriving after the Rangers player had earlier been lucky to escape a booking for three fouls. This time, Lafferty slid in, studs up, in a shocking challenge that fully impacted on Hinkel’s shin, one which had the Celtic fans howling for a red card. And Conroy should have administered it.”. Two months later Herald – “The tackle is not in my head any more,” said Hinkel yesterday. “It’s still on my shin, though. I still have the mark there.” (NO RED CARD) 2 Jan 2010 SPL game 1-1 draw
- Samaras header v Dundee United wrongly disallowed for offside.
Celtic had a Samaras goal incorrectly chopped off for offside. Scotland on Sunday – “Levein left the field quietly at the end and there was probably a reason for that. His side appeared to come out the right side of two highly contentious calls in the second half; a Georgios Samaras “goal” chalked off by linesman (unsure if it was Andy Tait or Lawrence Kerrigan ) and a Celtic penalty claim waved away by referee Steve Conroy. The “goal” was put away by Samaras just before the hour mark.” Daily Record “ The Greek said: “I went square on the defender and knew exactly where he was. I also know the move I made to keep me onside.”TV replays backed his claim. (GOAL CHOPPED OFF) 13 Sep 2009 SPL game 1-1 draw Not even just the penalty – look at the situation when Artur had a free-kick given against him.” Falkirk very nearly scored a winner from the free kick and if they had this ridiculous decision would have been highlighted much more than it was. (UNUSUAL DECISON!) 16 Jan 2010 SPL game 1-1 draw
- Dundee United score 3 mins to go 1 nil up on but wrongly disallowed. BBC Website -United were dominant for most of the game and David Goodwillie had the ball in the net, only to be flagged offside (by linesman Brian McGarry.) United were dominant for most of the game and David Goodwillie had the ball in the net, only to be flagged offside. TV showed Goodwillie was onside. (GOAL CHOPPED OFF) 24 Mar 2010 Scottish Cup Dundee United won 1-0 thnaks to an injury time winner.
- Eddie May admits Celtic should have had a penalty in 1-1 draw.
Mail on Sunday – ‘Falkirk manager Eddie May said: “Overall, I thought it was a fair result. But I think they should have had a penalty.” Daily Mail – ‘Alan Muir denied the Parkhead club a late penalty claim – when Brian McLean tangled with Fortune – in the 1-1 draw with Falkirk on Saturday. (STONEWALL PEN DENIED) 16 Jan 2010 SPL game 1-1 draw
16. Artur Boruc penalised for handling the ball 2 yards INSIDE his box. This has to be the most ludicrous free kick given all season 20 yards from goal to Falkirk This was as he was throwing the ball to then kick it out his area. When ever have you seen such a free kick given this season or any season. TV evidence clearly showed Boruc was 2 yards inside his box when he last handled the ball. The free kick was given by linesman Francis Andrews 5 minutes to go when game was 1-1. Daily Mail “Hinkel was also unhappy about Celtic keeper Artur Boruc being penalised for apparently stepping out of his area late on. “It’s not really my thing to say something about referees but, once again, we had some very strange decisions,” said Hinkel.
- Jocky Scott -”The 2nd penalty claim? – a blind man could have seen it!”
Dundee were drawing 1-1 with Rangers in League Cup quarter final when they were denied not one but TWO stonewall penalties according to Dundee manager Jocky Scott. Jocky Scott “We had two stonewall penalties, how the referee Dougie McDonald didn’t give them I don’t know ? “The second one – a blind man could have seen it!” (STONEWALL PEN DENIED) 27 Oct 2009 League Cup 3-1 Rangers
- McCulloch looks at McGuire then elbows him in face. Stays on park.
Lee McCulloch glances at Aberdeen’s McGuire then elbows him deliberately directly in face. Best to view the video to illustrate how deliberate this was. Daily Record – “Rangers midfielder Lee McCulloch, however, was fortunate not to pick up a red card from Iain Brines for an elbow on McGuire.” Rangers would have been playing 45 mins with 10 men if Brines had done his job. Next match for Rangers was Old Firm game. McCulloch escapes ban which could have been a 3 match ban for violent conduct.(NO RED CARD) 26 Sep 2009 0-0 draw
- Maloney brought down by Weir in box. No penalty &.Maloney booked.
Maloney clipped by Davie Weir in box. No penalty. Maloney booked for diving. TV showed penalty should have been given. Daily Mail – “Maloney, in particular, seemed harshly dealt with after being chopped down by David Weir with the score at 1-0 and was accused of simulating another tumble in the box following a challenge from his Scotland team-mate. TV pictures later suggested Craig Thomson got both calls wrong” (STONEWALL PEN DENIED) 4 October 2009 – SPL game. Celtic lost game 2-1
- McGeady sent off for diving 45 yards from goal.
Dougie McDonald sends off McGeady for diving 45 yards from goal after riding a few tackles after going on a run. After the match Mowbray said “If we hadn’t had the week we’ve had in the media, I would suggest the referee would never have made it a sending off.” In March 2010 Evening Times refelected on that incident- “Dougie McDonald sent off McGeady at Hibernian this season for diving. McGeady & Mowbray were both outraged at the decision.The alleged offence happened on the halfway line where “simulation” to gain an advantage was perhaps not the likeliest option for McGeady to take. Many believed he was merely trying to avoid being injured as a tackle was coming in. (HARSH RED CARD) 30 Aug 2009 SPL game 1-0 Celtic
- Dundee United denied stonewall penalty as Kyle Lafferty handles TV showed Lafferty’s hand moving towards the ball to block effort at goal but Dougie McDonald denies United the penalty. BBC website “Kyle Lafferty handled in the Rangers box in the first-half but escaped the award of a penalty against his side. However, despite strenuous penalty appeals from the United players, referee Dougie McDonald awarded a corner to the home side and booked Garry Kenneth for dissent towards the assistant referee.(STONEWALL PEN DENIED) 24 Mar 2010 Scottish Cup Dundee United won 1-0 thanks to an injury time winner.
22.Brown harshly sent off after clash with Lafferty who got off with it.
Scott Brown controversially sent off after altercation with Lafferty who did not receive a card. The Scotsman :- Striker Kyle Lafferty has admitted Scott Brown was unlucky to be sent off by referee Dougie McDonald in Sunday’s Old Firm derby. Celtic have appealed against the red card dished out to their captain after a clash with Lafferty. Rangers went on to seal victory thanks an injury-time goal from Maurice Edu and went ten points clear of their rivals.Northern Ireland international Lafferty, now preparing to face Albania in a friendly tonight, said: “To produce a red card was harsh but it is the referee’s decision and is nothing to do with me!”(HARSH RED CARD) 28 Feb 2010 SPL game 1-0 Rangers 92nd min winner once Celtic were down to 10 men.
- Boyd elbows Zemmama. When is an elbow in face classed as obstruction?
Any other classification for the booking would have meant Boyd suspended for Old Firm game. If it was an obstruction why no hand up by referee Steve Conroy. The Herald:- “Merouane Zemmama last night claimed Kris Boyd “went for his face” with his elbow and would have been sent off in other countries. The Rangers striker was booked after his arm caught Zemmama. Walter Smith, the Rangers manager, said he believed the caution had pushed his striker though the 18-point disciplinary mark, thus meaning Boyd would be unable to play against Celtic in two weeks. However, Steve Conroy, the match referee, later confirmed that the booking would only amount to two points for obstruction, leaving Boyd one point shy of suspension” (NO RED CARD) 14 Feb 2010 SPL game Rangers won 3-0 after 3 second half goals. Incident with Boyd took place in 1st half.
- Bougherra booked after 5 mins then has 7 fouls and stays on park. Dougie McDonald booked Bougherra booked early on but failed to send him off despite 7 subsequent fouls on Celtic’s forwards, Bougheera stayed on park and set up Rangers winning goal in injury time. BBC Website “ Former ref Kenny Clark said: “I’ve got to say that I did note a couple of times about Bougherra living dangerously, and I think he was on his very last life, as it were. “He was treading a very thin line. On another day he might well have been red-carded, but he got away with it. “I think he was very fortunate to remain where he was.”(NO RED CARD) 28 Feb 2010 SPL game 1-0 Rangers 92nd min winner
- Mcginn chopped in box with 5 mins to go. Ref McDonald says no pen.
McGinn chopped in box. Stonewall penalty denied with 5 mins to go. Daily Record – “The Northern Irish international was brought down inside the box by Lee Wallace with five minutes to go of Sunday’s SPL clash at Parkhead, only for referee Dougie McDonald to award a corner to the bemusement of everyone inside the stadium.”(STONEWALL PEN DENIED)21 Sep 2009 Celtic won 2-1 thanks to an injury time winner.
- Samaras blatantly chopped in box at Fir Park. No penalty.
Celtic do get penalty but only after having 3 claims for a penalty, two of which were stonewallers. The first one was a blatant penalty when Samaras was chopped in box. Guardian – “Even if Celtic did have a legitimate claim for a penalty when Samaras was tripped by Reynolds. Another two poor decisions from referee Charlie Richmond denied them penalties after McGeady had equalised.(STONEWALL PEN DENIED) 12 Dec 2009 SPL game 3-2 Celtic
- Lafferty has a shocking kung fu kick into Zhi’s groin. Not booked. Lafferty (again) high feet left in to catch ZZ’s groin, the Daily Record thought this was worth a full page photo with headline ‘Welcome to Glasgow China.’ Craig Thomson did not book Lafferty. (NOT EVEN A BOOKING) 4 October 2009 – SPL game. Celtic lost game 2-1
- Dundee denied 2 stonewall pens in League Cup v Rangers. Penalty 1 :-
Dundee were drawing 1-1 with Rangers when Dougie McDonald were denied not one but TWO stonewall penalties according to Dundee manager Jocky Scott. The Scotsman “I don’t care what anyone says. For the first one, Craig Forsyth says the goalkeeper definitely touched him. “There was no reason for him to go down as he would have been in a position to score.Unsurprisingly, Smith did not concur with his close friend’s assessment of the incidents.”I didn’t see the first one, because my view from the directors’ box was obscured by a pole,” said Smith,(STONEWALL PEN DENIED) 27 Oct 2009 League Cup 3-1 Rangers
- Dundee United player blocks Samaras cross with his hand. No penalty. Eurosport website “Severin then comes across to tackle Samaras. Appeals for a handball and it was a hand. Severin fortunate there. 66 min – That Severin handball was as strong as the one given against Steven Whittaker for Scotland against Spain the other night. Referee Dougie McDonald never spotted it.” The Herald “There were claims for a handball from Sean Dillon as Samaras clipped a ball from the byeline.” The two quotes list a different player as the offender but no doubt that it was hand ball. (STRONG PENALTY CLAIM DENIED) 17 Oct 2010 SPL game Celtic won 2-1 with late winner, Incident happened when 1-1.
30. Handball by Well defender in box. No penalty. Motherwell player clearly handles the ball in the box. Richmond denies penalty. Guardian – Even if Celtic did have a legitimate claim for a penalty when Samaras was tripped by Reynolds. Another two poor decisions from referee Charlie Richmond denied them penalties after McGeady had equalised. (STONEWALL PEN DENIED) 12 Dec 2009 SPL game 3-2 Celtic
- Weir recklessly follows through on Scott mcdonald. No booking
Weir follows through putting studs into McDonalds leg and adds a follow up knee to the back right in front of the referee Craig Thompson who had a clear view, free kick awarded but no booking.(NOT EVEN A BOOKING) 4 October 2009 – SPL game. Celtic lost game 2-1
- Papac nearly halves Kamara in two on edge of box. No booking
BBC Sport website “Diomansy Kamara fouled by Sasa Papac. Free kick to Celtic.” Goal.com website match report “Kamara has his leg kicked inside the ‘D’. Papac takes him down, but holds up his hands. Papac will feel lucky not to have been booked. Referee Dougie McDonald keeps his cards in his pocket. (NOT EVEN A BOOKING) 28 Feb 2010 SPL game Rangers win 1-0 with late goal.
- 33. Celtic goal disallowed against Hibs. Unclear why it was disallowed.
The Scotsman”Celtic toiled to get back into their stride, although they did seem harshly dealt with on the stroke of half-time when Darren O’Dea stabbed the ball into the net, only for the goal to be disallowed for a foul on Smith which was not easy to identify.” The Herald “They thought they had regained the lead just before half-time when Marc Crosas’s free-kick into the box was jabbed into the net by O’Dea but referee Iain Brines saw something – either offside or a shove – and disallowed the “goal”. That stoked the atmosphere around Parkhead,” Celtic lost the game 2-1.(GOAL CHOPPED OFF)27 Jan 2010 SPL game Hibs won 2-1
34. Keane continously flagged offside when onside. 2 yards onside v Falkirk
The Times “A Celtic source made allegations of refereeing incompetence around Keane, the source added: “It seems that officials are struggling to keep up with his pace. Several key offside decisions have gone against him purely because of his speed.” This statement was made on 25 Feb a few weeks after fans claim Keane was flagged wrongly offside against Hearts on FIVE occasions. A fortnight later Celtic played Falkirk, Robbie Keane is running a good two yards behind play when Georgeos Samaras releases the ball into his path. The assistant referee James Bee , also behind play, so he has the benefit of a clear perspective on the action, is a pace behind Keane and several yards behind the ball. The assistant ref raised his flag, intimating that Keane is ahead of the ball.Pictures show Keane to be clearly onside.(LACK OF SHARPNESS/PACE OF ASSISTANT REFEREES) 7 Mar 2010 SPL 2-0 Celticv Falkirk & 12 Feb 2010 Celtic 2-0 v Hearts
- Samaras goal chopped off v Morton in Scottish Cup.
The Sun says chopped off for offside. Daily Record says chopped off for handball. On TV highlights it did not look like it had hit his hand. Daily Record – “The big striker thought he’d scored in 75 minutes when he bundled the ball into the net. Referee Craig Thomson refused to award the goal, insisting Samaras had used an arm. The Sun “Celts thought they’d sealed it when Samaras bundled home at the far post from Crosas’ 77th-minute corner. They should have coasted home with Lee Naylor denied by the woodwork and Georgios Samaras having a strike ruled out for offside”.(GOAL CHOPPED OFF)19 Jan 2010 Scottish Cup 1-0 Celtic
36. Hooper fouled twice in the box. Penalty given then ref changed mind. Eurosport website 70th minute Celtic awarded a penalty then denied a penalty. McDonald has changed his mind. That is unbelievable. Hooper was clearly fouled by Pernis after being nailed by Kenneth seconds earlier. Very bizarre.Daily Record McDonald SHOULD have awarded Hooper with a free blast at goal from 12 yards for a foul on him by Garry Kenneth. And the United defender, already on a yellow card, SHOULD have been sent off. “Daily Record “ former top English ref Graham Poll has accused Dougie McDonald of giving in to playerpower. Poll said: “It was bizarre. It’s player pressure working, which is something we shouldn’t see.”The ref has got a clear-ish view of it and thinks the keeper has taken the centre-forward out and gives a penalty – so far nice and simple.”The players know that the keeper has got a touch on the ball but it should still be a foul. “They pressurise the referee, he feels that pressure and goes to talk to the assistant and the assistant says to him ‘the keeper got a touch to the ball’ and the ref says ‘no penalty, my mistake, I’m sorry guys’. “If refs make mistakes and admit they’ve blown the whistle when theyshouldn’t have done, then you can respect him.”But for me it was a penalty all day.“ Daily Record Hooper reckons the ref screwed up twice, insisting he was taken out on two occasions – and still didn’t get the penalty. And the Celtic star believes he could have been given a spot-kick seconds before that moment of controversy – insisting he was held back in the box by Garry Kenneth. Hooper said: “It was a penalty. He got me first and then the ball.”The linesman has only seen him get the ball and it was a bad call.”There were two penalties. If I had gone down with the first one it would have been a penalty and so was the second one.” (STRONG PENALTY CLAIMS DENIED) 17 Oct 2010 SPL game Celtic won 2-1 with late winner, Incident happened when 1-1.
- Fortune handles ball & booked. Kenny Miler handles ball No booking. After 7 minutes Fortune handles ball. A free kick is awarded to Rangers and Fortune is booked. 19 minutes later Kenny Miler handles ball. Dougie McDonald blows for a free kick to Celtic. Miller is not booked. The Sun “Fortune was next in the book for handball with the whistler wanting to show his authority from the start. Gers had the ball in Boruc’s net after 26 minutes when Edu cracked home a loose ball from the edge of the box. But McDonald had already blown for handball by Miller. (SAME OFFENCE – CELTIC PLAYER BOOKED OPPONENT OR RANGERS PLAYER NOT BOOKED.) 28 Feb 2010 SPL game 1-0 Rangers Note – Miller was booked in second half for a horrendous tackle on O’Dea. If ref was consistent that would have been red.
- 4 players kick ball away. Only the Celtic players are booked for it.
Iain Brines books McGeady and O’Dea for kicking ball away against Aberdeen. In same match Stephen McLean kicks ball away and is not given a 2nd yellow card for it. 4 days later the same Mr Brines is refereeing a match at Ibrox against St Mirren, Lafferty kicks the ball away and is given a lecture from Brines and no yellow card. (SAME OFFENCE – CELTIC PLAYER BOOKED OPPONENT OR RANGERS PLAYER NOT BOOKED.)SPL game 13 Feb 2010 4-4 draw. 17 Feb 2010 Scottish Cup game 1-0 Rangers
39. Ian Murray handles ball twice in box. Richmond denies penalty.The Evening Times “Charlie Richmond’s performance was inconsistent and, at one point, left Lennon leaping like a truculent teenager in his technical area. Had Richmond focused more on getting decisions right – like Ian Murray’s double handball in the box when pressurised by Keane after just 16 minutes – and less on posturing dramatically when blowing his whistle, it would have made for a much more efficient performance. As it was, Celtic managed to overcome his shortcomings and their own sluggish start to grind out a win. Daily Record “On Ian Murray – Lucky not to concede a penalty in the first half but showed plenty of effort. On Charlie Richmond – Got too many things wrong. Missed Murray’s handball in the box although he got the actual spot-kick right. (STONEWALL PEN DENIED) 4 Apr 2010 SPL game 1-0 Celtic
- Falkirk player handles ball in box. Referee does not give penalty.
Hand ball by Falkirk defender in the box. Alan Muir denies Celtic the penalty when TV evidence on the BBC highlights showed it was a clear handball. (STONEWALL PEN DENIED) 16 Jan 2010 SPL game 1-1 draw
- Severin handles in box after Mark Wilson cross. No penalty. Eurosport website:- “ Celtic denied another penalty when Severin clearly blocked Wilson’s cross with his hand. The referee Dougie McDonald has called that one wrong. (STRONG PENALTY CLAIM DENIED) 17 Oct 2010 SPL game Celtic won 2-1 with late winner, Incident happened when 1-1.
- Kenny Miller dives and gets soft penalty v Hibs to go 2 nil up. Kenny Miller goes down easily in box. Steve Conroy points to spot. Daily Record “Zemmama, who also claimed Kenny Miller went down “far too easily” for the penalty which Boyd converted in the second half.” (SOFT PEN AWARDED) 14 Feb 2010 SPL game Rangers won 3-0. 1-0 at time of penalty.
- Peter Houston complains about penalty awarded to Rangers. Losing 1-0 in a Scottish Cup quarter final Rangers were awarded 2 very soft penalties. Peter Houston was livid at both awards. The Scotsman “ Houston said: “I was disappointed to lose what I thought were two soft penalties. The goalkeeper got his foot to the ball for the first one. BBC website:– “I am disappointed and I just wonder if the penalties would have been given at the other end. I hope they would have been,” said the Dundee United manager. “Dougie McDonald is an honest referee in normal circumstances, I think he is one of the best in Scotland. But I was disappointed that he got there early to give the penalty kicks.”(SOFT PEN AWARDED) 14 Mar 2010 Scottish Cup 3-3 draw
- 3 players leave field of play to celebrate goal. Only Celtic player booked.
Rasmussen correcly booked for leaving field of play to celebrate with fans. Two weeks later McLean scores against Celtic, takes off his shirt, jumps the hordings along with half the Aberdeen team and celebrates with the fans at the Dick Donald. No second yellow card issued by Brines. The following day Whittaker scores a cracking goal for Rangers and runs to the fans at the east enclosure. No booking issued by Conroy.. 10 minutes later, with the score at 1-0, Whittaker puts in a challenge that is deemed a bookable offence so gets yellow carded but although he should be off the pitch for 2 bookable offences he isn’t. (SAME OFFENCE – CELTIC PLAYER BOOKED OPPONENT OR RANGERS PLAYER NOT BOOKED.) SPL game 13 Feb 2010 4-4 draw SPL game 14 Feb 2010 Rangers won 3-0
- Gus McPherson –“A different set of rules applies when coming to Ibrox.”
- Ledley fouled from behind by Goodwillie. No foul. Goodwillie scores. Telegraph “until Joe Ledley was ambushed by Prince Buaben in midfield. Goodwillie gathered the ball, took a couple of strides and struck a shot which deflected off Glenn Loovens and beyond Fraser Forster. The report said ambushed. Ledley was tripped and fell. Nine times out of ten a free kick would have been awarded. Dougie McDonald waved play on which led to Goodwillie scoring and equalising for Dundee United. 17 Oct 2010 SPL game Celtic won 2-1 with late winner (I WILL GIVE REF BENEFIT OF THE DOUBT IN THIS ONE BUT I HAVE SEEN THEM GIVEN.) 17 Oct 2010 SPL game Celtic won 2-1 with late winner,46. David Weir impedes Foran in box. No penalty. I don’t think you will get that at
BBC Sport website:- “The former Rangers defender was also in mischievous form when asked if his side should have had a penalty when Richie Foran was challenged by Rangers’ David Weir. “Yeah, but I don’t think you will get that at Ibrox,” he said in a week of much controversy about refereeing decisions in the Scottish Premier League. Referee Iain Brines waved play on. (STRONG PENALTY CLAIM DENIED) 30 Oct 2010 SPL game 1-1 draw.
- Miller goes in with studs high on O’dea. Only a booking.
Stv website “ 58″ Kenny Miller booked for a bad challenge on Darren O’Dea. Miller slid in for the 50-50 ball, but his high boot stamped into O’Dea’s leg in what could have a serious injury for the defender.” Dougie McDonald could have easily red carded Miller for that challenge. (NO RED CARD) 28 Feb 2010 SPL game 1-0 Rangers 92nd min winner. Miller should have been booked earlier in match for handball like Fortune was.
- Bougherra brings down Kamara in box. No penalty
Daily Record “Celtic hollered for a penalty when Diomansy Kamara – another earner who failed to perform – went under a Bougherra challenge.But McDonald waved play on and his heart was in his mouth by now the was getting through this by the seat his pants (PENALTY CLAIM DENIED) 28 Feb 2010 SPL game 1- 0 Rangers 92nd min winner..
- Ki fouled in injury time. No free kick. Hibs score from breakaway. Celtic players were unhappy that an apparent foul on Ki was not awarded by Iain Brines in the 92nd minute when Hibs broke forward. Miller and Stokes combined to set teenage Danny Galbraith, who has yet to start a game, free to score his first goal in senior football and collect the points for Hibs. (I WILL GIVE REF BENEFIT OF THE DOUBT IN THIS ONE BUT I HAVE SEEN THEM GIVEN.) 27 Jan 2010 SPL game Hibs won 2-1
- From BBC Website – St Mirren boss Gus MacPherson was angry Rangers’ David Weir was not punished by referee Charlie Richmond for a foul early in the Buddies’ loss at Ibrox. “I’m not wanting players booked or red-carded but there are laws to the game,” MacPherson told BBC Scotland after Saints’ 3-1 defeat. “David Weir impeded Michael Higdon in the process of shooting, he affected how he was shooting. “There’s a decision to get made there. No decision was made.” MacPherson feels guidelines set down at the start of the season are not being adhered to. “It’s compulsory that we must go to a meeting at the start of the season, it’s not optional, and we’re set down guidelines,” he said.”And during the course of the season, these guidelines change. I’m not just talking about St Mirren games, I’m talking throughout the game as we see it. “We watch games, we go to games and we see clips on the BBC and we see a different set of rules getting applied. None more so than when we’re coming here (to Ibrox).”(NOT EVEN A BOOKING) SPL game 7 Mar 2010 Rangers won 3-1
List of the SFA officials who featured on the Top 40 Honest Mistakes Season 2009/10:-
Dougie McDonald 17
Steve Conroy 7
Craig Thomson 6
Charlie Richmond 5
Iain Brines 6
Alan Muir 2
Wullie Collum 1
Linesman – 2 Lawrence Kerrigan OR Andy Tait 2 goals chopped off in 2 games but unsure which one of them raised flag. (games v Dundee United & Falkirk both times Samaras flagged offside.)
Linesman – 1 John Gilmore chopped off Motherwell goal.
Linesman – 1 Francis Andrews penalised Boruc for handling ball inside his own box.
Linesman – 1 James Bee flagged Keane as offside when he was 2 yards behind the ball.
Linesman – 1 Bran McGarry disallowed a Dundee United goal v Rangers.
Linesman – 1 Steven Craven disallowed a Hamilton goal v Rangers.
Linesman – 1 Willie Conquer disallowed a Celtic goal v St Johnstone.
Celtic fans are ridiculed in the media as being paranoid and are told they have no facts to back up their claims. I hope these decisions in the one season 2009/10 and the 1st 3 months of season 2010/11 provide some evidence to at least make sure there is no future seasons with so many “Honest Mistakes.” Video evidence in place would have overturned the majority of these decisions (especially the disallowed goals and penalty claims) with most only requiring one view to see the decision was wrong.
As you can see, VAR will probably never be introduced in Scotland, and certainly not when Celtic are working towards ten in a row.
And even if it was, its still the same officials , from the same school of learning, with the same attitudes, that will make the decisions..