Uefa is picking on us, says Rangers chief
Rangers have vowed to fight any UEFA disciplinary action over sectarian singing after claiming “disproportionate focus” had been directed towards their fans.
Rangers reacted with “utter dismay” after Uefa confirmed their control and disciplinary committee would discuss an alleged case of discriminatory chanting among supporters at the away leg of their Europa League clash against PSV Eindhoven last month.
Rangers have previously been fined for the same offence and face a fourth punishment from Uefa in five years when the panel meets in Nyon on April 28.
Uefa confirmed that could mean tougher sanctions should their fans be found guilty of “sectarian chanting”.
Uefa’s head of communications, Rob Faulkner, said: “Within the range of potential sanctions, the disciplinary regulations allow for anything from a warning to a fine to banning certain areas of the ground or banning away supporters, so there are a number of options available to the disciplinary committee.”
He added: “There is a clause regarding recidivism, which is the repeat of a similar offence within five years of an infringement.”
But Rangers chief executive Martin Bain argued the club were being unfairly singled out.
Bain said: “We are utterly dismayed to be informed by Uefa that it is to take disciplinary action against the club. We will defend the club's position vigorously at the hearing which is scheduled for later this month.
“Uefa has already made clear in previous disciplinary hearings that sanctions against Rangers have been mitigated by the extensive work the club does to tackle sectarianism.”
He added: “We are not saying there is not a problem but we are saying that for many years now we have made strenuous attempts to address it.
“We do, however, believe that it is absurd to think that only Rangers supporters sing offensive or sectarian songs.
“That is patently not the case and we are left to conclude that there is a disproportionate focus on Rangers.”