Patrick Harvie's unwillingness to accept the findings of a review into gender identity services for young people put a strain on Scotland's coalition government just days before it collapsed, Humza Yousaf has said.

In one of his first interviews since announcing his intention to resign, the First Minister admitted that the scrapping of the Bute House Agreement, which left the Greens furious, was on him. 

However, he said he thought the power-sharing deal would only have lasted a "matter of days or weeks" had he not acted. 

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Dr Hilary Cass’s report – published last month – highlighted a lack of evidence for some treatments for children presenting with gender dysphoria. 

The review warned of an entire field of medicine “built on shaky foundations”.

She found there was no good evidence to support the practice of prescribing hormones to under-18s to pause puberty or transition to the opposite sex.

It emerged shortly after the report’s publication that NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde and NHS Lothian have suspended the use of the so-called puberty blockers.

During an interview with the BBC’s Sunday Show, Mr Harvie was asked if he accepted that the Cass report was a valid scientific document.

He replied: "I've seen far too many criticisms of it to be able to say that.

"The decision that was made last week was not a government decision. It was made by individual clinicians."

The next day, during an interview with the BBC’s Today programme, he was asked again if he accepted the findings of the Cass Review.

He said it had been “politicised and weaponised” against trans people.

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The comments triggered a motion of no confidence from Alba MSP, Ash Regan. 

While the SNP's chief whip claimed publicly that none of her members would back the vote, reports have suggested that a number were likely to rebel. 

Two days later, Mr Yousaf stunned Holyrood by scrapping the deal. 

In his first interviews since announcing his intention to resign, Mr Yousaf said the comment had caused problems for some of his MSPs.

Mr Yousaf told the BBC: “I made it very clear my position and the government’s position was on the Cass review, but it is fair to say that of course those comments that were made by Patrick Harvie on the Sunday Show did upset a lot in my group.

“We co-operated well with the Greens for almost three years on a number of issues but it was clearly becoming strained – the Bute House Agreement.”

Mr Yousaf said he thought it was “a matter of days or weeks” until the powersharing deal with the Greens came to an end, however he said: “But I accept fully the manner in which it was done clearly caused upset and therefore I’ve paid the price of that.”

In the interview, Mr Yousaf also urged those seeking to replace him to lay off on the personal attacks.

He told the corporation: “I would say to supporters of any candidate that we will gain nothing if we talk each other down.

“The only people who benefit from that are our opponents.”

He also urged people to judge the candidates on their policies instead of religious beliefs.

“What people will judge any potential candidate on are their policies, what they stand for, what they will advocate, what they might end up moving away from in terms of policy,” he said. “That is the right discussion to have – not whether somebody of faith can be first minister.”

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Mr Yousaf said he had made up his mind to resign on Sunday morning. 

He said there had way for him to survive the two confidence votes he had been facing this week, but it would have meant doing a deal with Alex Salmond. 

"I wasn't planning to do a deal at any price or with anyone, and therefore, I think it was right for me to make the decision to step back."

Mr Salmond has claimed that Mr Yousaf spoke to Alba on Monday morning, trying to find agreement but that it was blocked by the "old guard" within the SNP.

The First Minister disputed that, saying he had missed a call from Ms Regan and has been asked to phone her back. 

He told Bauer: "Out of courtesy I did, but I made it pretty clear why I couldn't and didn't do a deal with Alba and let's be frank, it wasn't Ash Regan all over the news over the last few days, it was Alex Salmond all over the news over the last few days.

"So for me doing a deal with Alex Salmond was just not even in the question."

Mr Yousaf said he was ready to go to the backbenchers and had no plans to serve in government again. 

"I actually don't really remember what life was like before being a government minister and the intensity of the workload, the intensity of the pressure that comes with that, and indeed the intensity of the scrutiny that comes with being a government minister.

"So I will serve my time happily as a backbencher, not in the circumstances that I would have liked, and I've got to accept that.

"But there is an opportunity and silver linings as well that come with making a contribution from the back benches."

Asked what he would do with his spare time, he said he was looking forward to spending more time with his family. 

He also said he had not played five asides in 12 years.

"So I'm looking forward to maybe buying some Adidas Predator or some other football boots over the weekend and getting myself back to back to fitness for five asides."