Hinkel scarred by Lafferty tackle

27 February 2010 11:15
The Rangers striker only picked up a yellow card from referee Steve Conroy for a studs-first challenge on the Germany international when many believed it should have been a straight red.

The game ended 1-1 but speaking ahead of the Old Firm derby at Ibrox on Sunday, Hinkel admitted it is not the result that he remembers most.

"The image of the Lafferty tackle isn't in my head, it's in my shin," he said.

"I still have it there and I can go on Youtube and see the challenge on a 'the worst tackles' clip. If I had planted my foot on the ground then I could easily have broken my leg.

"I have watched it again and it's a bad challenge as he wasn't going for the ball.

"I am a defender and I would never challenge like that but you'd need to ask him if we was deliberately trying to hurt me.

"When he challenged me I turned away and I didn't see how bad it was, I just felt the pain. But it was an unusual tackle. I still don't understand it."

Added attention is on Sunday's referee Dougie McDonald after an unknown Celtic source let it be known the club were frustrated with major decisions they believe had gone against them this season - including in the past two matches against Rangers.

The former Stuttgart defender, though, played down any conspiracy theories, saying: "I haven't been in Scotland long enough to know if referees are against Celtic and maybe the history shows that is the case but I don't know.

"But I don't believe referees are against Celtic as I don't like to make excuses.

"My experience from the time I have been here doesn't show that they are favouring Rangers or Celtic.

"I know there has been a lot of talk this week about the referees. Maybe there is now even more pressure on him but the referee just needs to do his best.

"They are just human beings and there is more than enough pressure without talking about the referee, especially before an Old Firm game."

Hinkel insists he thrives on the pressure associated with Old Firm games and is looking forward to what is sure to be a typically tense encounter in Govan.

He said: "I always love these games as they are special.

"It's a pressure game but I enjoy that as life would be boring if there was no pressure.

"Can you imagine life without pressure, a life where everything was good? "You need pressure and you must handle it in a positive way.

"We have a word for it in Germany which means sado-masochist and it's about feeling no pain.

"Everyone watches these games and not just in Scotland but around the world."

Rangers 5/4, Celtic 21/10, Draw 12/5  

Source: Team_Talk

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