Regan to continue with reforms

21 April 2011 09:00

Scottish Football Association chief executive Stewart Regan has vowed to press on with his reform of the governing body's disciplinary procedures after reaching a truce with Paul McBride QC.

The SFA on Wednesday night withdrew their threat of legal action against the lawyer who represented Celtic manager Neil Lennon in front of their disciplinary committee after McBride expressed regret over the offence caused by his fierce criticism. McBride had hit out over the punishment meted out to Rangers over their part in the volatile Scottish Cup replay at Celtic Park last month.

Regan, who will put his major overhaul of the SFA's disciplinary procedures to clubs at the organisation's AGM next month, said: "Following constructive discussions with Paul McBride, I can confirm that the Scottish FA will not proceed with either a defamation case against him or a complaint to the Faculty of Advocates."

He added: "Whilst anyone is entitled to criticise the Scottish FA, we cannot allow our integrity to be challenged. Now that this issue is behind us, we can concentrate on the internal and constitutional reforms which will benefit Scottish football going forward."

McBride had criticised the SFA on Tuesday last week after Rangers trio Ally McCoist, Madjid Bougherra and El-Hadji Diouf escaped without bans following misconduct charges emanating from the infamous Scottish Cup replay against Celtic.

Lennon had earlier been handed a four-match ban for his clash with McCoist, although McBride ensure it was effectively reduced on a technicality.

The Glasgow-based lawyer, who was the target of a parcel bomb found in a Kilwinning post box on Friday, released a statement through Press Association Sport on Wednesday night.

It read: "In the course of an interview given to BBC Scotland on April 12, 2011, I made a number of remarks which followed the decision made at the disciplinary hearing involving Rangers FC players and their assistant manager.

"Following discussions with the Scottish Football Association, I recognise that offence has been taken to my remarks by the Scottish Football Association as an organisation, its council and its staff, and for that I express regret.

"I have a lot of respect for many individuals within the SFA, not least Stewart Regan. Under his leadership, I anticipate many reforms which will be welcomed across Scotland."

Source: PA