ANGRY league bosses will today hold crisis talks to push through new rules to punish selfish players who continue to recklessly flout the government’s coronavirus guidelines.
Football is still rocking with the revelations concerning Celtic defender Boli Bolingoli who had a secret trip to Spain without the knowledge or permission of anyone at the club.
The Belgian ignored self-isolation rules when he returned and trained with the rest of the first-team squad as they prepared for the Premiership game against Kilmarnock at Rugby Park where he played the last nine minutes as a substitute for Greg Taylor.
Manager Neil Lennon and the Hoops’ hierarchy were left seething after the news broke with tonight’s scheduled game against St Mirren in Paisley being postponed and Saturday’s visit of Aberdeen also being called off.
As a consequence of Bolingoli’s inexplicable act, the game’s ruling body will put together hard-hitting sanctions that could see top-flight stars hit with community service over further breaches of Covid-19 protocol.
Wide-ranging and severe regulations will be ratified during discussions with the SPFL board today, according to a report in the Daily Record.
And they will set out a range of potential punishments starting with hefty fines and lengthy suspensions with further unprecedented options under consideration.
SPFL supremo Neil Doncaster was forced to plead with Holyrood chiefs not to pull the plug on two full rounds of Premiership fixtures in response to Bolingoli ’s blatant disregard for guidelines.
The disgraced Celtic player is fighting to save his Parkhead career, but it is highly unlikely he will be seen again in the green-and-white hoops after throwing the club’s plans for a historic 10-in-a-row into jeopardy.
His actions sparked further outrage from First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and the Scottish Government after the storm created when eight Aberdeen players met in a city centre bar following a game a week ago on Saturday. Two tested positive for coronavirus and six were forced into quarantine.
Their scheduled league game at St Johnstone seven days later was called off in the fall-out.
Celtic and the Dons are already facing disciplinary action for the breaches with Ms Sturgeon admitting the game in this country is one more breach from being shown “a red card”.
The rule changes will be presented to the board this morning and could be rubber-stamped by this afternoon.
SFA president Rod Petrie said “Clubs and players are in no doubt there is no more margin for error. Players must heed the warning of the First Minister that this is a yellow-card moment.”
Doncaster added: “We’ve only been able to restart matches thanks to the enormous efforts and sacrifices of thousands of people across the Scottish game.
“For anyone to put that in jeopardy in such a thoughtless and selfish manner is just beyond belief.”