CLYDE footballer Ally Love could be suspended for up to 16 matches if found guilty of repeatedly racially abusing an opponent on his debut for the club.

Herald Sport understands that Love, is accused of making repeated and varied comments to Annan Athletic’s Rabin Omar on several occasions during the League Two match between the sides on January 2.

Love is alleged to have made further comments when Omar intimated that he wanted to sort out the problem after the game, which took place at Broadwood.

Loading article content

Herald Sport has been told Love denied that he had made any comments at half-time when Omar complained to referee Scott Millar, and 
the abuse was heard by players from both Annan and Clyde.

The SFA have issued Love with a notice of complaint citing a breach of rule 202 and Tony McGlennan, the head of compliance, wrote to both clubs last week asking for their version of events.

If found guilty, Love could face up to a 16-match ban, although an independent panel could mete out an even longer suspension in serious cases. Omar, who was born in Holland to a family originally from Iraqi Kurdistan, is expected to be backed by Clyde players, as well as his own team-mates. Indeed, two of his opponents on the day are believed to have provided assistance to referee Millar immediately after the match had ended.

The 26-year-old Love, who played more than 70 games for Annan during a two-year spell at the club, will attend a meeting at Hampden to discuss the case. The former Brechin City player has until next Wednesday (January 17, 2018) to respond to the charge, with a principal hearing date set for February 1.

Clyde would come under huge pressure to sack they player if he failed to prove his innocence. All a spokesperson for the Cumbernauld club would say yesterday was: “We are aware of the notice of complaint; however, we will not be commenting.”

Former Celtic winger Aleksandar Tonev was banned for seven games after he was found guilty of racially abusing Aberdeen’s Shay Logan in 2004.

In 2008, East Fife’s Kevin Fotheringham was handed an eight-match suspension for racially abusing Stranraer’s Gregory Tade.

Only this season, Falkirk player Kevin O’Hara was banned for eight games over comments made to Dean Shiels of Dunfermline about the loss of his eye following a childhood accident, while team-mate Joe McKee was banned for four for a similar issue.