Police defend handling of Celtic v Rangers match after ‘missiles thrown between fans’

Eight people were arrested following the clash, which ended in a 1-1 draw at Celtic Park

Police Scotland has defended its handling of Sunday’s football derby after missiles were thrown between fans.

Eight people were arrested following the clash at Celtic Park, which ended in a 1-1 draw, with both Rangers and Celtic claiming fans were targeted with bottles and other missiles.

Police Scotland said its plans had been “proportionate”, but people watching the game on television are not convinced about that.

Their comments came on social media and after Rangers criticised police response claiming their supporters had been left “unprotected” and that elderly and disabled fans had been injured by bottles.

Cynics predicted this would happen as Rangers played the propaganda card in an effort to wipe away the stain of the recent bottle attack at Ibrox.

Celtic said its supporters and stewards were also hit by debris, including seats ripped from the stands.

Following the incident chief superintendent Stevie Dolan said: “We are aware of missiles being thrown between groups of supporters within the stadium, one of which struck a police officer who thankfully was not seriously injured.

“Further inquiries into disorder on Fielden Street before the match are being carried and we will continue to work in partnership with football clubs to ensure that such events take place safely.”

Officers said a total of eight people were arrested for various offences including disorder, pyrotechnics and religiously aggravated offences.

It is remarkable how police cannot trace the source of the pyrotechnics – better described as coloured smoke bombs – which were let off during and after the match and cut that off.

In a statement after the match, Rangers said it was “disappointed” with the police response, which observers felt was remarkably dissimilar to their response after Rangers won the Scottish Premiership and their rowdy fans were given a police escort into the city centre where they trashed George Square.

Rangers fans were given a police escort from Ibrox to George Square which they trashed.

“Our support was left unprotected as they were attacked by bottles and other missiles,” it said.

“Reports so far include injuries to elderly and disabled supporters. Furthermore, we are collating evidence of possible hate crimes which will be reported to Police Scotland as a matter of urgency.

Celtic said it was still “working through the recent events at Ibrox”.

During a match last month, a Celtic physiotherapist was hit on the head by a glass bottle and glass had to be removed from the Celtic penalty area.

“It is extremely regrettable that again our supporters have been targeted with missiles, including bottles and seating, ripped from our seating deck, resulting in injury to fans and stewards,” said Celtic.

“We will be liaising with all relevant parties in order that a wide range of issues are fully addressed in the appropriate manner.”

One comment

  1. No surprise! The Huns are pro-Israeli, pro-NATO Nazi warmongering imperialist Russophobes. Huns by name and Huns by nature. Odds on they were flying the Star of David and the Ukrainian flag….alongside the Butcher’s Apron.

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