Advertisement

Rangers: Philippe Clement happy with Willie Collum in charge of cup tie

Clement with referee Nick Walsh after the Old Firm game in December
Clement with referee Nick Walsh after the Old Firm game in December

Rangers manager Philippe Clement is happy Willie Collum will referee his side's Scottish Cup tie against Ayr United on Saturday evening.

Rangers asked the Scottish FA not to involve the official in their matches following the Celtic game in December.

Collum was the VAR in Celtic's 2-1 win and Rangers thought the official should have asked referee Nick Walsh to review a possible Alistair Johnston handball.

"I'm happy to be honest. We can leave this story behind us," said Clement.

"When there's one moment I think a referee isn't neutral I would quit my job - so I'm happy we can leave the past behind.

"For me there was a fault made, it was a clear handball but I'm also not without fault. I make fault every day probably.

"I don't look at people and if they make a mistake they are dead for life or something. No, this is a new game, new situation.

"It's important not to live in the past. I don't want my players also to be living in the past about the last few weeks or months. It's about next game and performing there.

"And if we make mistakes, you expect to get new chances to prove that you've become better. I'm in that way into life."

When asked if he would have liked to be consulted before the request was made to the Scottish FA, Clement said "that's something for in the club and we've talked about it - that will happen in the future, yes".

Clement also accepted the failure to overturn Dujon Sterling's dismissal against Aberdeen in midweek, and says he knew the introduction of VAR would not take away the "grey areas" in officiating.

"That's the thing about football, it's never black and white," the Belgian added.

"There is a grey area and it's a difficult job as a referee in that grey area. That's also one of the charms of football [although] I don't feel that sometimes when it goes against you.

"Clarity is really important but there will always be a grey part. That was maybe the mistake that everybody had when VAR was coming - that the grey zone would disappear.

"That's not possible, because there are so many nuances in every action. This was a grey zone. It went against us so we need to accept it."