Glasgow (AFP) – Rangers captain James Tavernier was confronted by a pitch-invading Hibernian fan in his side’s stormy 1-1 draw at Easter Road on Friday.
The supporter leapt out of the home stands to challenge Tavernier in a shocking incident on the stroke of half-time.
After kicking the ball away from Tavernier as he prepared to take a throw-in, the man became embroiled in a bout of shoving with the Rangers player, who had moved towards him after he jumped onto the pitch.
By the time the fan was dragged away by police, the ugly scene had overshadowed a frustrating night for Rangers as Steven Gerrard’s side wasted the chance to put pressure on Scottish Premiership leaders Celtic.
Just six days on from Scott Sinclair avoiding serious injury after a glass bottle was hurled at the Celtic winger, it was another disgraceful episode involving the Hibernian support.
“Make no mistake about it, that is a complete and utter imbecile,” said former Rangers manager Ally McCoist, who was working as a TV pundit.
“And with a bit of luck he will be spending at least a night in the cell.”
Hibs CEO Leeann Dempster apologised, saying: “I’m not going to call him a supporter. It’s completely unacceptable.
“This week alone we’ve had to write to Scott Sinclair and apologise to him for the bottle.
“Now I have to go and see Mr Tavernier and apologise to him as well. It’s unacceptable.”
Gerrard didn’t see the incident at the time and said: “To be really honest I’m not aware of a fan running on.
“If that is the case that’s for Hibs to deal with and maybe talk to people in charge, but I’m not aware.”
Florian Kamberi snatched an unlikely point for Hibernian after Daniel Candeias’ strike was all Rangers had to show for their dominance in the first half.
Kamberi pounced with 15 minutes to steal a point for Paul Heckingbottom’s side, who ended the match with 10 men after Darren McGregor was dismissed in stoppage-time.
Celtic can take a 10-point lead over second placed Rangers if they beat Aberdeen on Saturday.
It was Rangers who struck first when Glen Kamara charged forward before passing to Candeias.
Paul Hanlon stopped the Portuguese winger’s first cross but it broke back to the former Benfica man, who took a touch before whipping an unstoppable effort into the top corner.
After the unwanted pitch invasion, Rangers’ failure to make more of their dominance came back to haunt them as Kamberi levelled in the closing stages.
Kamara switched off as the Swiss forward ghosted clear to slam home at the back post.
Having been outplayed for most of the night, the hosts almost claimed an incredible win as Stevie Mallan pounced on Allan McGregor’s spill but Joe Worrall’s block saved Gerrard’s team.
Darren McGregor walked in stoppage time for a professional foul on Jermain Defoe.
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