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Football: Sports Hotline.

Byline: ANTHONY HAGGERTY TAKES YOUR CALLS

THREE red cards, two goals, stalemate and two factions intent on claiming the moral high ground.

Yep, it was Sunday Service and business as usual in the last Old Firm league game of the season.

On Planet Hotline, referee Kenny Clark's sensational ordering off of three players was the major talking point.

First up was John Scott, Port Glasgow who said: "If Fernando Ricksen was sent off and the ball was still in play then Celtic should have been awarded a penalty and the chance to win the game."

James McGhie, Coatbridge said: "Ricksen started the melee when he blatantly stuck the boot into Johan Mjallby. No wonder Mjallby reacted the way he did.

"As for John Hartson, God only knows what he was playing at getting involved in such antics. He should know better - after all, his disciplinary record is hardly exemplary."

Paul Chawner, East Kilbride reckons Gers' Italian defender Lorenzo Amoruso is the new Richard Gough.

Paul said: " Amoruso is the new Gough all right. He actually referees games better than Goughie ever did.

"Amoruso constantly gets away with murder and some of his decisions are questionable.

"He certainly gets my vote - not for Player of the Year but Official of the Year. Well done Amo!"

Rangers fan James Baird, Pollok said: "Fernando Ricksen is a liability. Every time an Old Firm match comes along he looks completely out of his depth.

"How many times is he going to get away with this in a game against Celtic?

"What was Kenny Clark thinking of when he played no injury time as Rangers should have had at least a few minutes to take on nine men.

"We had an opportunity to pump the ball into the box from a free-kick but Clark blew the final whistle. That was a disgrace."

Frank Clark, Bo'ness, rang in to take issue with Player of the Year nominee Paul Lambert.

Frank said: "Lambert's petulant boot at Peter Lovenkrands merited a sending-off.

"That tackle changed the game as Lovenkrands ceased to be as effective as he had been after that challenge.

"That is not the type of behaviour you would expect from the so-called Player of the Year-elect.

"I just hope Lorenzo Amoruso pips him to the award after that."

Derek Diack, Larkhall said: "That's Alex McLeish undefeated in three games against Martin O'Neill.

"If Rangers beat Celtic in the Scottish Cup Final does McLeish get O'Neill to keep.

"O'Neill was so quick to patronise Dick Advocaat when he had the beating of him - I wonder what he's thinking now he has met his match."

Meanwhile, the prickly subject of the state of Scottish football raged on as Hearts fan Andrew Preston, Airth, took a swipe at Celtic chief executive Ian Mcleod.

Andrew said: "How can McLeod justify his comments saying that other clubs fleece the Old Firm when they turn up at our grounds.

"Hearts charge Celtic fans pounds 19 to watch a game at Tynecastle yet Jambos supporters have to fork out pounds 22 at Celtic Park for the same privilege.

"His comments are totally unfounded and complete nonsense."

Phil Campbell, Lennoxtown said: "Celtic and Rangers will need a massive financial sweetener if they are ever to play in the Nationwide League.

"They'll have to do without qualifying for Europe for as long as they stay in the Nationwide.

"Everybody knows that's where the big bucks are made - in European competition."

Tony Coogan, Broxburn said: "Celtic and Rangers and the other 10 SPL clubs should be locked in a room until the future of Scottish football is secure.

"I'm not in favour of the Old Firm leaving for England and they should thrash out a solution even if takes days, months or years to arrive at a settlement."David McCARTHY is on Hotline duty today between 11am and noon on 0141 309 3306
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Title Annotation:Sports Hotline
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Apr 22, 2002
Words:647
Previous Article:Football: REBEL 10 NEED US QUINN TELLS FANS.
Next Article:Football: Even if there's nothing at stake there's plenty to play for in an Old Firm derby.



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