Nicola Sturgeon branded an Aberdeen statement during the Covid pandemic as a “complacent abomination”, text messages have revealed.

The former First Minister had blasted correspondence from Pittodrie chiefs after two players were confirmed to have tested positive for coronavirus back in August 2020.

A club statement had confirmed two first team players had tested positive but were asymptomatic. Six other players, who were in close proximity to the players affected, also went into self-isolation for 14 days.

Eight players – Jonny Hayes, Michael Devlin, Scott McKenna, Matty Kennedy, Sam Cosgrove, Dylan McGeoch, Craig Bryson and Bruce Anderson – apologised after flouting Covid rules by visiting an Aberdeen bar after a match against Rangers.

Now, a text exchange between Ms Sturgeon, Professor Jason Leitch and MSP Joe Fitzpatrick has revealed the former FM had slaughtered the original statement from Aberdeen on the matter.

Ms Sturgeon had text: “This statement – from a club that’s just allowed its players to breach the rules – is a complacent abomination!”

The Aberdeen statement had read: “Further to tonight’s JRG statement, Aberdeen FC confirms that two first team players, who have tested positive for COVID-19 but are asymptomatic, are self-isolating for ten days.

“In line with government guidance and procedures from the football authorities, six other players, who were in close proximity with the two positive cases, are also self-isolating for 14 days.

“The Club has been in open discussions with the football authorities since this came to light.
“As a result, the Club will be missing eight players for the St Johnstone game, which the JRG has confirmed will now go ahead on Saturday.”

Aberdeen chairman Dave Cormack commented: “After Saturday’s game, with all eyes on Pittodrie, we were once again commended on the stringent processes and measures we had in place. Given the efforts of everyone at the Club and our investment in protecting our most valuable assets, this is a bitter blow.

“With two first team players testing positive for COVID-19, plus six others having to isolate for 14 days, it is also a harsh reminder of the severity and speed of spread of this virus.

“The Club will be carrying out a full investigation but, as an immediate first step, we have reinforced the Club’s COVID-19 protocols and the governing bodies’ guidance with every player and member of staff and will continue to regularly educate and remind everyone of what is, and what is not, acceptable in the current climate.

“We now have to focus on preparing for Saturday’s game under extremely difficult circumstances.”