Since the 4-1 win over Motherwell on Sunday one subject has dominated the thoughts and comments of Celtic fans. Jeremie Frimpong, Andrew Dallas and Devante Cole in whatever order you like.
Eight minutes into the second-half, with Celtic leading 2-0, Frimpong was looking to advance into the Motherwell half to set up a chance. The ball barely moved, Cole knew the positioning of his opponents and planted his studs into Frimpong’s left thigh. Fortunately that leg wasn’t planted on the ground.
Dallas seemed reluctant to get involved, it seems that he was given no encouragement from the Fourth Official or his assistant who were both within 10 yards of the clash.
With Frimpong writhing on the ground a yellow card came out, Sky Sports viewers saw a re-run and winced. It was brutal but this season it wasn’t an incident in isolation.
Explain to me why this is not a red card? pic.twitter.com/PfQK4bbaWd
— Dodgy Foo (@dodgyfoo) November 8, 2020
It seems that opponents know that they are immune from a straight red card against Celtic, most of the time they’ll not even be booked.
At Tannadice in August, Dallas awarded a free kick for a crunching attack on Odsonne Edouard’s ankle from Mark Connolly. The Dundee United defender finished the game without even a caution, it could be argued that Edouard has been a shadow of himself since that moment.
Was this one not a red card? Never saw the paper headlines or media hysteria over this tackle!! pic.twitter.com/LnaeKtTuXY
— Ian Scobie (@scoblerone10) September 20, 2020
A few weeks later Craig Sibbald of Livingston took a wild swipe at the knee of Ryan Christie. The two players were running towards each other, the Livi midfielder waded in dangerously and escaped with just a yellow card from referee Gavin Duncan.
At Hampden the other week Lewis Ferguson flung a fist at Albian Ajeti, no card or free-kick awarded by Don Robertson.
In recent visits to Hampden Christie and Kieran Tierney have ended up hospitalised. Craig Thomson issued a yellow card to Dom Ball while Bobby Madden looked the other way while Jayden Stockley swung his arm at Tierney.
It is now more than 48 hours since the final whistle at Fir Park. There appears to be no sign of the SFA Compliance Officer getting involved but puzzling for many Celtic fans is the silence from their own club.
At lunchtime today Video Celts emailed Celtic’s Communication Manager to see if there was any concerns from the club about the failure of match officials to apply the Laws of the Game and protect players. By close of play on Tuesday no reply had been received.
With Edouard, Christie, Ajeti and Frimpong on the end of brutal attacks this season it seems only a matter of time before a serious injury is suffered. Maybe once a player is in plaster or undergoing surgery someone at Celtic will call things out.
Scottish football? When will the next player from Manchester City or Paris Saint Germain put their career in the hands of Scottish referees?