“You mention an appeal — but was there an appeal?” Mowbray said, referring to the fact that McDonald sat in judgment on his original decision.

“Who was the appeal to? My frustration is that the same referee who has made the decision on the day has another look at it and the matter is finished.

“It doesn’t seem much of an appeal. If you appeal something, then you want to do so to an independent body. But that is not the case here.

“I didn’t know the process before we went into this. I thought we would appeal, someone would have a look at it and think, ‘yeah, maybe the referee got that one wrong’, without going over the top of the individual or wagging a figure at him.

“If it gets thrown out by an independent panel then you say, ‘fine, we all move on’. It just seems harsh to me that the guy who makes the decision is then asked to make another decision.”

I had to laugh once this was finished because immeditaley after such an impassioned and reasoned critique of a blatantly nonsensical system Raman then informed us that at his own weekly press conference Rangers manager, and last bastion of all things decent, honored admirable in a club manager, Walter Smith had found time amongst all of the back slapping and inherent smugness to defend the same banal process. I know give you Walter’s thoughts:

“That’s the way it is, with the referee having the final decision after looking at it again,” said Smith.

“We had the same thing with Kenny Miller after he got sent off against Dundee United earlier in the season.

“I do think, if a referee goes in and has a look at it and is honest enough about it, that’s sufficient.

“I don’t think there is any great need for a change. I don’t think a referee will be frightened to change his mind if he sees that he’s wrong.” 

Fair enough. Walter disagrees. I mean at the end of the day the great Walter Smith speaks his mind and is entitled to his opnion. I mean it’s Walter Smith we’re talking about here. The guy is a living legend for crying out loud. Always personal, polite and decent. He’s way above getting bogged down in pointless disagreements and basing his opinions on petty, deep held resentments as opposed to reasoned thought. That’s why the press love him so, right?

Mmmmmm, the problem is Wattie that you sort of shot yourself in the foot , or maybe Martin Bain was too busy topping up his impending melanoma to check the diatribe before you unleashed it, by mentioning Kenny Miller and the SFA’s apparently horrendous decision not to overturn his red card for merely kicking out at someone’s head while lying on the ground earlier in the season. You see here is where the plot thickens. Let me take you back to the turn of the year and the lead up to the second Old Firm game of the season. On this very subject Walter’s opinion was strangely, almost eerily similar you might say to Mowbray’s it seems when he was, dare I say it’ actually involved as opposed to brazenly commenting on another team’s predicament:

“We are extremely disappointed by the referee’s decision,”
said Smith.

“It’s especially hard to understand how he can uphold the red card given that, during the game, he was telling our players Kenny Miller had kicked Dods in the head. That was the reason he gave for producing a red card. But, having watched the TV evidence myself, that is clearly not the case.

“The referee is adamant this was violent conduct but from watching the tapes I have to say there is not even a great deal of anger being shown by either of the players.

“That’s why I’m disappointed in his decision not to change his mind. It seems obvious he got it wrong.”

On the subject of the SFA rules that state that the card can only be rescinded if the match referee admits he made a mistake and overturns the decision personally, Smith seemed unable to understand the logic.

“How can you have an appeals process which is dependent upon the referee admitting that he got it wrong in the first place?” he said.

“It doesn’t seem to make a great deal of sense.”

If only the pillars of our great press had access to and the knowledge base to use that newfangled late 20th century invention called Google. If only. 

To be honest I’ve never had a problem with Smith. Part of me egged him on when he drunkenly , though most Rangers fans I know insist he was sober, made a fool of Chick Young in thatinterview now so easily accessed on youtube. He also had the balls to come out and remind everyone that league championships and trophies won’t save Rangers from a fire sale summer if they don’t find a buyer with near bottomless pockets and Murray-esque levels of vain ambition in the face of long term stability. But this elder statesman image that is portrayed of him by the press is bullshit. When it comes down to it he’s as petty and moronic as most bitter supporters on either side of Glasgow’s footballing divide. I mean how bloody convenient. When it’s a Rangers player involved just rip up the rulebook and start again but when it’s someone wearing hoops then strangely everything is fine and dandy as it is so why change it?!!!!

If only (it’s becoming a theme that) someone in the press corps had the stones to just point out the above absurd contradiction and pull him up on a blatant example of sticking the boot into Mowbray when he’s already down as well as effectively putting having a dig above actually putting pressure on the SFA to change something that even a blind , senile monkey could see was wrong. Though admittedly Bill Leckie has not as of yet commented on the issue.

You really can be a petulant, biased arse Walter and if any proof was needed then surely the above puts it beyond doubt.