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Rangers ‘astounded’ over SFA charges handed to club

The Ibrox club received notices of complaint from the Scottish FA relating to two matches in December.

Charge: Michael Beale was dismissed from touchline against Celtic
Charge: Michael Beale was dismissed from touchline against Celtic

Rangers have said they are “astounded” at charges issued to the club over the conduct of their staff and players during games against Hibs and Celtic.

The Ibrox club received notices of complaint from the Scottish FA relating to the two matches in December with Alfredo Morelos and Ryan Kent, as well as two members of the backroom team, at the centre of the alleged misconduct.

In a statement on Saturday, the club said: “Rangers is astounded by the notices of complaint issued by the SFA.

“It is concerning that it seems the governing body is seeking to hold Rangers to a different and more stringent code of conduct than that applied to others, with unprecedented charges being levied against the club.

“Rangers fans can be assured that it is our firm intention to resist the charges in the most robust manner possible.

“Rangers will make further comment after the weekend.”

The first charges come from the Light Blues’ 3-0 win at Easter Road on December 20.

Kent, Joe Aribo and Jermain Defoe scored the goals that gave Steven Gerrard’s side the win but the match was marked by a touchline confrontation between staff of both sides.

Hibs assistant John Potter was sent to the stand, as was Rangers coach Tom Culshaw.

Both teams have been charged under rule 204, which states: “All clubs and recognised football bodies shall procure that its officials, team staff, employees and players conduct themselves in an orderly fashion at all times during and/or after a match”.

Hibs and Rangers face a fine if the charge is proven to an independent panel.

Potter and Culshaw have both been charged with misconduct under rule 203 and could face suspension.

Rangers are also in the dock over behaviour during their 2-1 victory over Celtic at Celtic Park on December 29.

The club has again been accused of breaking rule 204 and the charge is understood to centre on the conduct of Kent, Morelos and coach Michael Beale.

Beale was dismissed from the touchline by referee Kevin Clancy during the final minutes of the game, after Morelos was sent off for picking up a second yellow card.

Morelos was also cautioned again after the game for gesturing to Celtic fans as he headed off the pitch.

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