CELTIC right back Alistair Johnston has revealed that John Lundstram’s foul on him at Parkhead on Saturday left him with no fewer than 11 stud marks on his leg and endorsed Willie Collum’s decision to show the Rangers midfielder a red card after a VAR check.

Sky Sports pundit Kenny Miller was incensed when Collum rescinded his yellow card and ordered the Ibrox player off after watching a replay of the rash challenge on the pitchside monitor in added on time at the end of the first-half.

However, Johnston has recalled how Lundstram’s wild lunge ripped his sock and left him covered in blood as well as fearful the ankle which he required an operation on at the start of last season might have been badly damaged.

The Canadian internationalist, who helped the Scottish champions to win 2-1 and move six points ahead of their city rivals at the top of the cinch Premiership table with two games remaining, felt the match official handled the situation correctly and used the new technology well.

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 “In the moment, I was concerned, just because it was the ankle I did previously,” he said. “That was the one that nearly ended my season last year when I had to get surgery. 

‘So I was a bit worried. But luckily they did some tests on it and structurally it was good. It was just swollen and pretty bruised, which kind of affected the mobility of it and my confidence in it for the rest of the match. But structurally it was sound and that was the most important thing.  

“But I knew it was bad. My socks were ripped and I had blood everywhere. So I had a feeling this one might need to go to VAR. I saw the yellow come out and, to be fair, I saw the ball 30 yards away and thought maybe he did win the ball. But he definitely won me as well. 

The Herald: “I didn’t realise how bad it was until I saw the replay of it. In the moment he caught me pretty good, but it looked even worse than it was. A gash when halfway up my leg as well and down the side of it. I knew in the moment it probably wasn’t a great challenge and that’s why VAR is here. 

“You can have a look at those tackles again to really see what happened. I think there are quite a few good freeze frames I’ve had sent to me that painted a pretty straight picture of what happened.’ 

“I thought that was what VAR was for. To eradicate decisions where they might have missed something.  I thought that one was pretty black and white. So whatever the controversy was after I think they made the right call and I think it was a pretty open and closed case. 

“I am all for a big challenge as a defender. But, again, I think that’s what VAR is there for. He caught me pretty good, but it almost could have looked in real time like he did win the ball and I just kind of got caught in the middle of it. When you slow VAR down you see that, no, he got me and I actually kicked the ball. 

“It was the right call at the end of the day and I don’t think anybody would have any complaints about it.” 

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Johnston added: “Thankfully, I didn’t need any stitches. But I do have about 11 stud marks on my legs, you can count them. I was a bit worried it might be the end of my game. 

“But it was different to last year’s ankle injury when I got up, tried to put weight on it and it didn’t feel structurally strong at all. This one I just felt it would potentially hinder me a bit in terms of my mobility. 

“That’s something as a defender, especially when you are playing against a team like that, where they are going to be direct and they are going play off second balls. 

“So I was worried how it might affect me in terms of making a split second decision or turning. So that was more the safe option to come off when it was a bit swollen and sore. 

“I was just happy we ran through all the tests and structurally everything was right. It was just about getting the swelling out and everything feels better now.” 

The Herald: