SFA defend Boruc fine over Rangers gesture

October 24, 2008

The Scottish Football Association insist they were being consistent by fining Artur Boruc a paltry £500 for the one-fingered gesture he made to Rangers supporters in the last Old Firm derby.

Boruc was handed the fine and a severe reprimand by an SFA disciplinary commission yesterday for his actions during the August 31 clash at Parkhead.

The 28-year-old was originally charged last month after an SFA review panel examined photographs of the incident.

It is not the first time the Poland international has been caught on camera antagonising opposition supporters, so such a mild financial penalty is bound to raise a few eyebrows

Boruc's fine is of the order given to Dundee United goalkeeper Lukasz Zaluska for gestures made during a match against Aberdeen last season.

SFA president George Peat told BBC Scotland: "The SFA tries to be as consistent as possible.

"You could have the same position with someone who is earning a lot less and, unless you decided that you were going to take it as a percentage of his earnings, it's a difficult one to evaluate.

"We certainly have to discourage it as it does no-one any good to try to incite supporters and we have to eliminate that.

"We just hope that the message has got through and it does not continue."

Boruc will be in goal for tomorrow's Clydesdale Bank Premier League clash with Hibernian, another team whose fans he has riled in the past.

Their manager, Mixu Paatelainen, was also in front of the disciplinary committee yesterday.

He lost his appeal against the four-match touchline ban imposed following his sending off in the August 26 Co-operative Insurance Cup defeat to Morton.

Paatelainen will be in the dugout tomorrow, with his suspension taking effect on November 1.

Meanwhile, Hibs assistant Donald Park has backed Derek Riordan to flourish on his first return to Parkhead since cutting short a nightmare spell with Celtic last month.

The 25-year-old left Easter Road in 2006 with a massive reputation, having scored 61 goals in three seasons.

However, he failed to force his way into Gordon Strachan's first-team plans during a frustrating two years that ended in a falling-out with the Celtic manager.

Having signed for Hibs again on transfer deadline day, the once-capped Scotland international has immediately recovered his scoring form, netting three times in five outings for his boyhood heroes.

And Park believes the prolific marksman will relish his return to the east end of Glasgow, where he insists he became a better player despite his lack of first-team opportunities.

Park said: "I'm sure he'll be looking forward to it. It's a great test for him at Parkhead, a big arena, where he had a good time in the sense of the fans' reaction to him.

"You're always keen to go back and he would love to score, I'm sure. I would love him to score, maybe one or two. He'll be very positive and will be looking forward to it.

"I'm not sure how the Celtic fans will view him but he's certainly got the mentality to handle that, no matter what comes.

"When he got his opportunities I thought he did well at Celtic. It's difficult when you go to a top team because they have got top players and there are lots of top players that don't play.

"I'm sure he was disappointed he didn't make the breakthrough but I think he's come back a better player."