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BAN DODGE ‘HUGE EMBARRASSMENT FOR SCOTTISH FOOTBALL’, INSIST CELTIC

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CELTIC have branded Jon Flanagan’s ban escape as a “huge embarrassment for Scottish football”.

The Ibrox defender remarkably dodged a two-game suspension after clearly firing an elbow into Scott Brown’s face in a nasty confrontation in Govan last weekend.

Making matters worse, the ball was not even in play during the flashpoint moment as Callum McGregor was preparing to take a right-wing corner-kick.

Amazingly, referee Kevin Clancy, who observed the thuggish action, only flashed a yellow card, but the former Liverpool player was later issued with a retrospective punishment after three former match officials declared his offence violent conduct following the incident’s re-examination by SFA compliance officer Clare Whyte.

However, the Ibrox side challenged that assessment and an independent panel dismissed the case following an SFA disciplinary hearing yesterday.

A Celtic spokesperson said: “This whole matter is a huge embarrassment for Scottish football.”

Hoops interim manager Neil Lennon had argued the offence was a blatant red card.

Flanagan has now been cleared to play in the non-event, nothing-at-stake, end-of-season game against Kilmarnock at Rugby Park tomorrow afternoon while the champions will be celebrating their eighth successive title against Hearts at a 60,000 sell-out Parkhead at the same time.

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