Rangers trio escape without bans

Madjid Bougherra and El-Hadji Diouf leave Hampden
Bougherra and Diouf have been fined by the SFA

Ally McCoist has successfully appealed against a two-match touchline suspension while two of his Rangers players have escaped additional bans.

Madjid Bougherra and El-Hadji Diouf, who were sent off in the Scottish Cup loss to Celtic, have instead been fined for their "serious misconduct".

Diouf was fined £5,000 by the Scottish Football Association, while Bougherra must pay £2,500.

Assistant manager McCoist had received his ban for a touchline altercation.

Celtic manager Neil Lennon had already been given a four-match ban following the same incident between the two men at the end of his side's 1-0 win on 2 March.

That charge triggered an additional four-match suspension, but the SFA later conceded Lennon's ban would run concurrently, rather than consecutively, following a legal challenge by Celtic.

And the manager will return to the dugout at McDiarmid Park against St Johnstone on Tuesday evening.

McCoist welcomed the SFA disciplinary committee decision on Tuesday about his own ban.

"I am pleased that the SFA accepted what we had to say on the matter," he said in a statement.

"I didn't believe I had a case to answer and I am delighted with the outcome.

"As I have said before, what happened at the game is in the past and we've moved on.

"My focus now is the same as our entire squad - to win our remaining games in the league."

Rangers chief executive Martin Bain thought the decision justified the club's decision to launch an appeal.

"We welcome the decision regarding Alistair and this fully justifies our decision to appeal against the original two-match touchline ban," he said.

"We have been fully supportive of Alistair's position on this issue from the beginning and we're glad that common sense has prevailed.

"We are, however, disappointed that our players' misconduct was in the opinion of the disciplinary committee to be of a significantly serious nature and we will study the reasons for this when they are given in writing."

Rangers assistant Ally McCoist is all smiles
McCoist won his appeal against a touchline suspension

The SFA hearing at Hampden addressed the actions of Diouf and Bougherra and both players were issued warnings about their future behaviour.

Algeria international defender Bougherra, currently out of action with a hamstring problem, was one of two Rangers players dismissed during the game at Celtic Park - the other being Steven Whittaker - while on-loan Blackburn forward Diouf followed after the final whistle.

Bougherra was shown a second yellow card in stoppage time and reacted angrily, appearing to try to prevent referee Calum Murray from showing his cards.

The defender also manhandled Murray after the first-half dismissal of Whittaker.

Diouf was booked after a first-half flashpoint on the touchline, involving Lennon and members of both benches, and he was shown a second yellow card for dissent after the final whistle.

Diouf, Bougherra and Whittaker will all be suspended for the first of Rangers' games in next season's Scottish Cup.

However, Diouf and Bougherra faced additional charges of "misconduct of a significantly serious nature" and that led to the SFA fines.

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