IT is a shame that in one of the most exciting Scottish Premiership campaigns in recent memory, the country has been wrapped up for much of the last week discussing dodgy refereeing calls.

Some of the wilder conspiracy theories would have David Icke even thinking they were a bit out there, so it was great to get back to a full card of football during the week.

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Therefore, before we get into the hoo-ha again about contentious calls and match officials, it is important to point out that Wednesday was another brilliant night of Scottish football, particularly that pulsating game at Pittodrie where Rangers edged out Aberdeen in a thrilling contest.

The match had everything. There were goals of outstanding quality, red cards, rammies, crunching tackles, the lot. It was interesting to note some observations from football fans south of the border on social media, who reacted as if they had just been given a portal to the past to witness how football was once, and is really supposed to be played.

Two committed teams going hell for leather. Don’t you just love it.

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With all that being said though, much of the subsequent discussion in the hours and now days following the match centred upon the second-half flashpoint between Scott McKenna and Alfredo Morelos that ended up with both players being sent off.

Now, before we get on to Morelos, it is worthwhile noting here that McKenna has rather slinked out of the spotlight simply by deign of who else was involved in this particular incident. The young centre-back has a huge future in the game, but just as Rangers manager Steven Gerrard pointed out after the match that Morelos’ antics could cost him a big move, the same charge could be levelled at McKenna if he’s not careful. His reaction to Morelos leaving the boot on his nether regions on Wednesday may have been instinctive, but it was excessive and daft all the same.

In the first match of this season too, when Morelos was sent off for a petulant kick at McKenna, the Scotland man was hardly an innocent party. Neither was Morelos, mind you, despite the rescinding of his red card that followed.

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And here is where the SFA tribunal have painted themselves into a corner in regards to the Morelos red card, and why it is no surprise to see Rangers appealing the decision.

To most neutrals, and in accordance with how the rules have been applied in the last two decades, there seems little doubt that referee Bobby Madden got both dismissals spot on.

However, given that Rangers have already successfully appealed the red card against their striker’s ordering off earlier this season on the grounds that the force of his kick was not excessive and did not equate to brutality, then it would seem as if they have a good case to have this red card overturned as well.

As daft as it was, the precedent has been set.

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However much you may disagree with the ordering off on the opening day being overturned, and however much you might think that Morelos deserved his sending off

on this occasion too, I don’t think you could argue that there was much of a difference between the force of his kick at McKenna on Wednesday and the force of his kick at McKenna in August. I’m no lawyer, but if there is to be any semblance of consistency applied from the SFA tribunal, then it would seem to naturally follow that the law should be applied similarly here too.

Was it an obvious refereeing error?

Well, if it is deemed not excessive using the same parameters as the August judgment, and so cannot constitute a sending offence of Violent Conduct as the previous ruling explicitly stated, then you would have to conclude that yes, it was. What a mess. And one entirely of the tribunal’s own making.

Even if Morelos does manage to slither off the hook for the second time this season though, he would do well to take heed of the promptings of his manager regardless. He is one of the most exciting attacking talents this country has seen in recent times. He is spiky and aggressive, sure, but as he displayed on Wednesday, he is developing into a fine finisher. And he’s only 22. Rangers should enjoy him while they have him, because if he can curb his petulant streak, then surely he won’t be around for all that much longer.