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Rangers miss chance to extend lead at the top as weather hits SPL hard
Press Association - 3 years ago

Rangers will not get the chance to extend their lead at the top of the Scottish Premier League to five points after their game at Dundee United fell victim to adverse weather conditions.

The Scottish Football Association had worked furiously all week to ensure all SPL games would go ahead despite strike action from referees threatening the fixture list.

But, after drafting in Alain Hamer, the Luxembourg match official who also took charge of Celtic's game yesterday, the game at Tannadice Park had to be postponed.

According to a statement from Rangers, "snow overnight made the pitch at Tannadice unplayable and driving conditions treacherous".

With injury to several key players and following a tough midweek defeat to Manchester United in the Champions League, Rangers may welcome the free weekend.

"Today's match has been called off due to the severe weather conditions overnight and this morning," said a statement on the Dundee United website, with no new date for the fixture yet confirmed.

The day's other SPL game, between Motherwell and Hearts, has also been postponed because of safety reasons, again with no new date confirmed.

Meanwhile, with the referees' weekend strike now over, the officials could now ask the SFA to consider deducting points from clubs who question their integrity, according to retired match official Stuart Dougal.

"Points deduction is something the Category One referees will want to talk about," Dougal told Scotland on Sunday.

"It's one of the suggestions they've come up with. It would be for the protection of everybody in the game ? managers and players. It would set out clearly what is acceptable and what isn't and the penalty for overstepping the mark.

"Nobody has a problem with a manager questioning a decision a referee makes but when certain people start saying that a ref 'couldn't wait to give a red card against us' or say that the ref 'conspired against us', then that is not right.

"When it veers into conspiracy and innuendo, then there should be a clear sanction in place."

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