RANGERS' management were not counting the cost of victory yesterday, but one of their players was. Mark Hateley will be fined a week's wages by his club for being sent off in Sunday's 1-0 win over Celtic at Parkhead.

Hateley was dismissed after 67 minutes of his first match since re-signing for the club, when he appeared to head-butt Celtic goalkeeper, Stewart Kerr.''Mark Hateley will be dealt with under the very stringent disciplinary code which we have at Ibrox,'' Rangers manager Walter Smith said yesterday.

''We began this internal system some years ago and it is because of that - and the severe fines imposed - that our disciplinary record has been so good in recent years.

''Mark knew the procedures before he left and he will learn about them again now,'' Smith said with foreboding.

What Hateley will re-discover is that he will miss out on a week's wages - believed to be between #5000 and #6000 - for his moment of stupidity.

Rangers are often criticised for the conduct of their players, but yesterday Smith, who rivals the legendary Bill Struth for trophies won on the field, seemed as strict a disciplinarian as his predecessor was off it.

Earlier in the day Smith's, chairman, David Murray, backed referee Hugh Dallas's handling of the Old Firm match, and urged that a degree of understanding be employed when the authorities consider disciplining the players on both sides.

Dallas sent off two players, Malky MacKay as well as Hateley, and booked a further eight.

''I believe the referee handled the match in a professional and competent manner,'' Murray said.

''I think that in the cut and thrust of games such as these it is inevitable that there are incidents which the referee has to deal with.

''Some of the events on Sunday cannot be unexpected when you consider the immense pressure both teams were under in such an important game,'' Murray said attempting to put things into perspective.

Whilst not condoning any of the indiscipline shown on Sunday, Murray was reacting to a suggestion from SFA Chief Executive Jim Farry that the chairmen of both clubs make public statements condemning the conduct of their players.

''One would like to think the chairmen of both clubs would let football know whether those public misdemeanours are disapproved of,'' Farry said.

It might benefit the public to know that the chairmen do not approve.''

Celtic chairman Fergus McCann refused to comment on the views expressed by Farry, his office saying that they would rather comment when they hear directly from the SFA.

Neither club was trying to play down the unsavoury events of Sunday, but there is a feeling that after the hype which may well have contributed to the trouble at the weekend, there is no point in blowing up those incidents to the point where they could overshadow the next meeting between the clubs and perpetuate ill-feeling.

Farry, on the other hand, seemed less concerned with exercising his own authority, and more intent on keeping others from imposing their's.

''When there is an incursion on to the field we are dealing with a serious and indeed legal concern.. Players need to perform their onerous duties well,'' he said.

The fear at the SFA clearly is intervention from the procurator fiscal's office, while the Old Firm are confident that if their houses get disordered they know how to put things right.

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Meanwhile Rangers have abandoned attempts to sign more players as cover for the run-in.

Walter Smith is still ap-proaching the last six matches of this so-hectic season season with caution, but his endeavours to sign a midfield player to stand in for all of those out through suspension and injury have failed.

Smith will instead try to negotiate this coming Saturday's match at home to Kilmarnock and then hope players recover in the fortnight before they next play.

He also looks likely to fail in his bid to sign Alexander Maninger, a 20 year-old goalkeeper from the Austrian club Casino Graz.

Archie Knox went to Austria on Saturday to watch Manainger, who was seen not just as cover for Andy Goram, but also as a potential successor to him.

Arsenal, however, have also been alerted to his talents, and the Austrian was understood to have been at Highbury yesterday in signing talks with manager, Arsene Wenger.