Rangers' Steven Naismith banned after elbow incident

Rangers forward Steven Naismith will serve a two-match ban for swinging an elbow at Dunfermline defender Austin McCann on Saturday.

Referee Iain Brines missed the incident at East End Park.

But a Scottish Football Association compliance officer assessed TV evidence and Rangers have accepted the penalty.

The Scotland international will therefore miss home Scottish Premier League matches with Kilmarnock (Tuesday) and Hibernian (Saturday).

A brief statement on the Rangers websiteexternal-link said: "Steven has already had an apology accepted by Austin McCann and admits there was no deliberate intent to make contact with the player.

"Manager Ally McCoist supports the new SFA fast-track process for dealing with disciplinary matters and trusts it will be applied fairly across all clubs."

The off-the-ball clash took place during the first half of Rangers' 4-0 win in Fife, with Naismith scoring twice after the interval.

A statement from the SFA soon followed, saying: "The player was offered a two-match suspension, which is equivalent to the automatic suspension that would have applied had the referee reported this offence.

"The player has accepted the suspension offered. Accordingly, the case will not require to be determined by a Fast Track Tribunal. The suspension applies immediately to the club's next two first team matches, irrespective of competition."

Prior to the punishment being meted out by the SFA, McCoist was reluctant to discuss the matter.

However, when pressed on the attributes of this season's leading scorer, the manager was more expansive.

"I would not want to take anything away from Steven's game in terms of his natural zest and enthusiasm - that's one of his biggest strengths," he added.

"But Steven's no different from any other footballer, you have to control these emotions and these talents, if you like."

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