Celtic: John Guidetti charged by SFA for 'offensive' song

Celtic striker John Guidetti
John Guidetti has scored 14 goals for Celtic this season

Celtic will fight a Scottish FA charge against striker John Guidetti, who is accused of singing an "offensive" song relating to Rangers.

The 22-year-old has been issued with a notice of complaint following an interview on Dutch TV show FC Rijnmond.

During the broadcast he repeated a chant sung about him by supporters.

The SFA's compliance officer asserts that the on-loan Manchester City player broke disciplinary rule 73 by making a "comment of an offensive nature".

Guidetti, a Swedish international, has until 15:00 GMT on 30 March to respond to the complaint, with a principal hearing date set for 9 April.

"We are very surprised and disappointed that this has even found its way to an SFA judicial panel," said a Celtic spokesman. "John Guidetti will be defending this charge."

Speaking to BBC Radio Scotland, former SFA compliance officer Vincent Lunny said: "It would appear that their focus is on the comment attacking Rangers or making fun of Rangers for having gone into liquidation back in 2012.

Former Scottish FA compliance officer Vincent Lunny
Lunny preceded Tony McGlennan in the role of SFA compliance officer

"It is, I think, significant that there's no mention of it being sectarian or otherwise based on religion.

"[Celtic forward] Leigh Griffiths this time last year was sent a charge for singing 'Hearts are going bust'.

"For me, the problem with this case and with the Griffiths case is you've got professionals who are making fun of other clubs in difficulty. People are losing their jobs within football and it's simply not appropriate for players to behave in public in that manner.

"There are different standards between the fans and the players. The players are directly under the jurisdiction of the SFA, the fans are not.

"Any rule against fan behaviour is against the club. It would have to be fairly serious for a club to be prosecuted for fans singing something and probably would have to be a criminal-type scenario or grossly offensive for that to be done.

"That is not necessarily the case here with players. You expect fans to make fun of other clubs and taking delight in another club's demise is not surprising for fans to do but for players to do it is perhaps something completely different."