Rangers: SFA compliance officer challenges Steve Simonsen ban

Simonsen was found guilty of betting on 55 matches
Simonsen was found guilty of betting on 55 matches

Rangers goalkeeper Steve Simonsen's two-match ban for betting on matches has been challenged by the Scottish FA compliance officer.

He says the punishment handed down by an independent panel was too lenient.

Simonsen was banned for two matches - one suspended until the end of the season - after being found guilty of betting on a total of 55 games.

This is the first occasion a compliance officer has appealed the decision of an independent panel.

Regulations enabling them to do so, should they feel a sanction unduly lenient, were introduced at the start of the season by the Scottish Football Association.

Rangers did not appeal the original decision. No date has been set for the appeal.

Simonsen, 35, bet on 18 matches last season, as well as 37 during the current domestic campaign.

None of these fixtures involved Rangers, and the former England Under-21 international claimed he had misunderstood the SFA's rules governing players' gambling.

The SFA's disciplinary rule 33 forbids players, coaches, club officials and referees in Scotland from betting on football anywhere in the world.

Ian Black, a teammate of Simonsen at Rangers, was banned for 10 matches, seven of which were suspended, and fined for violating this regulation in September 2013.

The veteran Simonsen, who has accumulated over 400 senior appearances in a career spanning almost two decades, missed the Ibrox side's 2-0 loss to Hibs on February 13th, with Lee Robinson keeping goal in his absence.

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