CELTIC right back Moritz Bauer last night praised Rangers winger Jordan Jones for phoning to apologise for his bad challenge at Ibrox - and admitted he was sorry his opponent suffered a serious injury fouling him.

Substitute Jones received a straight red card from referee Bobby Madden for lashing out at Moritz at the end of a game against Neil Lennon’s team at the start of this month that Steven Gerrard’s side lost 2-0.

The 24-year-old damage ligaments as a result of his late challenge, left the Govan stadium on crutches and was ruled out of Northern Ireland’s Euro 2020 qualifiers against Luxembourg and Germany.

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Bauer, the Stoke City loanee who came off the bench to make his Celtic debut in the Glasgow derby match, admitted he had been impressed the former Kilmarnock player had contacted him to say sorry.

“I didn’t see him after the game, but he called me the next day and we had a good chat,” he said. “That was absolutely fine with me and it came as a pleasant surprise.

“It’s a compliment to him and fair play. I was lucky I wasn’t injured by his challenge. I knew at the time it was a badly-timed tackle, but I don’t believe it was anything personal, even though it looked really bad on TV and social media.

“Unfortunately, he hurt himself a little bit, but that was just frustration on his part. I got away unscathed and he came off worse, but there are no hard feelings from me, everything’s fine.

“He’s been unlucky. I can understand his frustration because we played very well and had a well-deserved victory. I’m sorry for him because, whoever you play for, no-one wants to see an opponent injured.

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“But I think it showed character on Jordan’s behalf that he took the trouble to call me and say he was sorry. As bad as his tackle was, it was good that he made the effort to do that. I’m pleased with that reaction.

We’re all good and we can move forward. I’ve made bad tackles during my career, although I’ve never been sent off.

“I was surprised when I saw the red card for Jordan because it hadn’t hurt that much at the time.”