Steve Clarke: Kilmarnock boss and club face Scottish FA disciplinary charge

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Steve Clarke led Kilmarnock to fifth place in last year’s Scottish Premiership

Kilmarnock and boss Steve Clarke have been charged by the Scottish FA over comments made criticising the governing body’s disciplinary process after Gary Dicker lost his red-card appeal.

The Killie midfielder was sent off for a challenge on Hearts’ Calumn Morrison.

Clarke claimed the appeal was rejected because Willie Collum, who dismissed Dicker, had been appointed to referee the forthcoming Old Firm derby.

He and the club have until 18 September to respond to the charge.

The principal hearing date has been set for 25 October.

Dicker, 32, has served one game of the two-match suspension upheld by the independent tribunal, who backed Collum’s “serious foul play” verdict. The midfielder is unavailable for Saturday’s Scottish Premiership trip to Hibernian.

Reading a prepared statement at a press conference on 31 August, Clarke said that the “perception of most and certainly of our club is that the (appeal) hearing was pre-judged by Collum’s early appointment”.

The Killie boss also said that “small clubs like Kilmarnock may be fair game”, adding “the period of time between the tackle and red-card decision was ridiculously short and lacked a calm and rational approach from such an experienced official”.

The SFA allege those remarks brought the game into disrepute.

They have accused Clarke of breaching Disciplinary Rule 72, which says no team official under SFA jurisdiction shall “in any manner likely to lead to publicity (i) criticise the decision(s) and/or performance(s) of any or all match official(s) in such a way as to indicate bias or incompetence on the part of such match official; or (ii) make remarks about such match official(s) which impinge on his character”.

Clarke is not the only top-flight manager to criticise SFA disciplinary procedures this term.

Aberdeen boss Derek McInnes was angered by the “incompetency” of the appeal process after failing to overturn Michael Devlin’s red card in defeat by Killie earlier this month.

How does the process work?

If Scottish Professional Football League clubs decide to appeal against a decision, they must prove that an obvious error has been made.

They have until 13:00 on the first working day after the match to lodge their intention to appeal, and their case must be submitted by 17:00 the next day.

The player or any other personnel cannot attend the hearings, which will be a video conference between a tribunal of trained, independent judicial panel members.

As of this season, the Scottish FA’s compliance officer plays no part in the proceedings.



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