RANGERS supporters have been criticised over claims they sang sectarian songs at a black tie dinner in a Glasgow hotel attended by former players.

There is no suggestion that former players sang sectarian songs but sources at the event on March 31 confirmed that “anti-Catholic” songs were sung. Police were later called over an alleged assault.

The event named Rangers 9 In a Row 20th Anniversary Dinner saw hundreds of supporters pay £70 each to rub shoulders with former players at the Hilton Doubletree in Cambridge Street.

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One source, who asked not to be named, said: “It was ridiculous – 880 people in dinner suits chanting sectarian songs. I’m not Catholic but they shouldn’t be allowed to sing anti-Catholic songs. Some of the staff felt very uncomfortable, including an Irish member of staff who was very worried.”

Anti-sectarian charity Nil by Mouth's director Dave Scott said: “It can’t be ignored that the most successful period in Rangers’ history was kickstarted by Graham Souness’ bold decision to sign Mo Johnston and other Catholic players followed, playing their part in securing the nine titles. How chanting sectarian songs at a dinner in their honour celebrates their achievements would be beyond the understanding of most people.”

A source at the hotel confirmed those at the event sang songs which could be considered offensive. “It was certainly a raucous occasion and they were reminiscing by singing old Rangers songs,” said the source. “There was certainly a lot of singing.”

The event was billed on Facebook as “a special night for our nine in a row greats”. Nine in a row refers to nine league titles Rangers won in successive years between 1988 and 1997.

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Police confirmed they were called to the event just after 11pm and arrested a man in connection with an alleged assault on a member of staff. Police have not received any complaint about sectarian singing.

A spokeswoman said: “Police received a report of a disturbance resulting in a man being assaulted in Cambridge Street, Glasgow. Police attended and a 47-year-old man is subject of a report to the Procurator Fiscal in connection with an alleged assault.”

It is understood the man who was assaulted was an employee of security company InHouse, which was hired to oversee the event. Managing Director Bob Wong confirmed that a member of his staff was targeted and added: “I am speaking to police about this matter.”

The Police Scotland spokeswoman said officers are not currently investigating claims of sectarian singing but encouraged witnesses to come forward.

“We would always advise that anyone with concerns regarding any crime is encouraged to report the matter to Police Scotland,” she added.

The organisers of the event did not respond to a request for comment. They posted a list of former players they expected to attend on Facebook before the event took place.

The Sunday Herald contacted former player Nacho Novo, who was pictured at the event, but he did not respond. It is not known whether any other former players attended.

A hotel spokesman said: “The wellbeing and safety of our team members and guests are key priorities for us and we will always take any action we deem necessary to ensure that.”