FOOTBALL: Dick and Jo Must Act to Stop a War at Hampden
Jackson, Keith, Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
A TOP ref last night called for Old Firm bosses Dick Advocaat and Jozef Venglos to ensure Hampden Park does not turn into a war zone on May 29.
The grade one official believes Celtic's Stephane Mahe should be kicked out of Scottish football for his role in Sunday's Parkhead game of shame.
And he says it is Advocaat and Venglos's responsibility to remove their most volatile stars from the Scottish Cup Final to avoid repeating the scenes which saw ref Hugh Dallas attacked and almost provoked a riot.
The official - who would be punished by his bosses if named - said: "The players on Sunday displayed an unbelievable lack of discipline which quickly spread to the supporters and then we had a situation of mob rule.
"It was clear from the outset that Mahe was losing all self- control and at that stage he should have been substituted.
"He was a liability to Celtic but, more importantly, he was largely responsible for what followed in the stadium, the city centre and at Hugh's home.
"His reaction sparked fury all around and what followed was sickening, it defied description.
"We need calm heads all around - on the park and in the stands - or Scottish football could be disgraced again at Hampden.
"If it happens again then we may never recover so both Advocaat and Venglos have a huge responsibility to make sure their players are under control.
"If, in the opening minutes, they see one of their players losing the head then they have to act immediately before the situation gets out of control.
"For the sake of Scottish football we simply can't afford to take any chances."
He spoke out in Sports Record last year when he predicted an official would be assaulted after a whisky bottle was hurled at a linesman during a title clash between Hearts and Rangers. Now he has warned that many grade one refs will quit.
He said: "If such scenes become commonplace then we will have to ask ourselves if we really need it. …