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I'M GUNNING FOR TV JUDGES; John wants fair trial for PFA men.

Byline: Euan McArthur

SCOTTISH PFA chairman John Rankin last night revealed players are lining up to complain about the SFA disciplinary appeal system.

And he insisted their union will keep fighting to force a radical overhaul.

Rankin spoke out after Dundee United team-mate Gavin Gunning lost his appeal against a controversial threegame ban imposed for violent conduct. This came following an incident with Celtic star Virgil van Dijk at Tannadice as Jackie McNamara's team lost 1-0. United were furious as they felt Gunning was the victim of trial by television and now Rankin has called for a revamp of the entire system so players receive a fairer hearing.

Players chief Rankin said: "There are reps at every club and players complain all the time about the system and the way things are going. It's not falling on deaf ears. We are trying our best to get someone on that panel who speaks for us. We need a voice.

"You'd be amazed at the numbers of players who complain about the system, whether it's bookings, suspensions or the PS1000 fee to appeal suspensions.

"I fell foul of it when I was sent off.

I've only had one red card in my career and I thought about appealing it but PS1000 is PS1000 and if your appeal is knocked back because there's not a player on the panel to stand up your account you lose that money.

"It's difficult when people judging you have never played the game."

Rankin is striving to see a former player appointed to the panel for appeals. He said: "We speak about this subject regularly. There is an ex-referee and SFA people but we need a player too. Whether it's an old ex-pro or one who has just retired, we need someone who can put across a player's view."

Rankin also reckons using TV evidence is a dangerous road to go down. He said: " If you get TV going through each game with a fine-tooth comb, they'll probably find something in each game that could get someone banned.

"We are looking to clean the game up but you want the best product on the pitch and that's not going to happen with players being banned all the time.

"We should be talking up the good things about football - not dragging the game through the mud."


ON THE BALL John Rankin's PFA are trying to help the likes of Gavin Gunning, right
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Sep 12, 2013
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