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Sport Stewart Gilmour in Rangers and Celtic claim as he makes 'football integrity' declaration

05:10  19 september  2020
05:10  19 september  2020 Source:   msn.com

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Former St Mirren chairman Stewart Gilmour insists Celtic or Rangers would never have been put in the Jim Goodwin's side were defeated 3-0 at home, and Gilmour insists that situation would never "I just think the whole decision is totally wrong, it undermines the integrity of football - in particular

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Former St Mirren chairman Stewart Gilmour insists Celtic or Rangers would never have been put in the situation his club were at the weekend.

The Buddies saw all three of their first team goalkeepers sidelined after positive coronavirus tests, but the game against Hibs went ahead as planned.

The Paisley club got Zdenek Zlamal on an emergency loan from Hearts, while goalkeeping coach Jamie Langfield had to take a place on the bench.

Jim Goodwin's side were defeated 3-0 at home, and Gilmour insists that situation would never apply to a Rangers vs Celtic clash.

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He said on BBC Radio Scotland: "I think we've set a very special precedent here.

"Are you trying to tell me that in the Old Firm game, if that happens, the game will take place?

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"I don't believe that, and if you believe that I think you believe in the tooth fairy. Honestly.

"If one of Rangers or Celtic does not have one of their top three goalkeepers available, do you think that game will take place?

"I just think the whole decision is totally wrong, it undermines the integrity of football - in particular Scottish football.

"I take my hat off to Hearts, all the things that have been said between St Mirren and Hearts, particularly the supporters, they have shown themselves to be above and beyond.

a person holding a football ball © Ross Parker/SNS Group

"I have no problem with that whatsoever, but I do not think that same situation will arise in an Old Firm game.

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Rangers mounted some late pressure, but Celtic 's defence, marshalled excellently by the dominant Boyata, comfortably dealt with the test to ensure they go into the international break four points clear of Rangers , and three points behind league leaders Hearts.

Rangers are currently eight points behind their Old Firm rivals, but Steven Gerrard’s side have been buoyed by their recent league form. Celtic face Aberdeen on Saturday in another difficult fixture, and former Rangers boss Warburton thinks Brendan Rodgers’ exit leaves the club in a difficult position.

"I think there's no doubt the game would not have taken place.

"I think we have to be clear between outfield players - goalkeeper is a very specialised situation.

"We had the situation a few years ago when we had an outfield player played in goals (Ryan Stevenson for Raith Rovers against Ayr United) and in my view that was farcical.

"We're trying to raise the standard.

"I think the fans will look on this dismally, all fans, and I don't believe just St Mirren fans. I think there are other fans looking at this saying: 'God I hope that doesn't happen to my club, because that's wrong'.

a person with a football ball © Ross Parker/SNS Group

"I think if St Mirren had forfeited the match, decided not to play or not to turn up, that wouldn't have been the right thing. I'd hope we'd be above that. But for football integrity it's not right.

"And that's one of the things that our chief executive keeps going on and on about.

"I really think we're a broken organisation. We are broken in terms of people just don't know what to expect decision-wise.

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RANGERS boss Steven Gerrard insists the gap between his team and Celtic is not as far as has been made out. And Gerrard was particularly pleased with the display of on-loan striker Defoe, who scored his sixth goal for the club since signing a temporary deal at Rangers in January from Bournemouth.

"They really don't. And I say people - supporters, fans. Fans of every club, not just St Mirren.

"I think we're in danger of chasing fans away, because we look like an organisation that's corrupt.

"We really do look like that."

It was then put to Gilmour that the decision was taken by the Scottish Government, who declared there was not enough information to postpone the game.

He responded: "I think I'm one of the supporters of many clubs that don't have faith in the decisions that have been made.

"Yes, it may have been made by a Scot Gov person outwith football - maybe they don't understand football.

"I don't think any of the St Mirren players have done anything wrong. They haven't done anything outrageous, they haven't gone to Spain and come back.

"They've played within what was asked of them from what I can gather.

"I just think the whole situation of a goalkeeper is completely different from outfield players.

"The bigger picture is the fact that a club is asked to play.

"Do you honestly believe, are you going to tell me that if Rangers or Celtic the night before - and that's when it happened, the day before - the Old Firm game are going to have all three goalkeepers excluded through Scot Gov rules, health rules et cetera that the game will take place?

"I'm afraid I don't believe that. I don't believe it."

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