Paul Gascoigne has been denied entry to the Scotland Hall of Fame. More than that, the legendary midfielder’s name has been dragged through the mud after an event to induct him was cancelled. Cue ex-pro Vinnie Jones and ex-Rangers teammate Ally McCoist leaping to his defence.

The duo were quick to blast the decision from the SFA and with good reason. More than just deny him the honour, they planned an event, invited him to it, and pulled it from beneath his feet. Why let it get to that stage with a man who’s mental health problems have been well publicised?

Both of them are seething.

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM – JUNE 15: Scotland player Ally McCoist (l) exchanges shirts with England player Paul Gascoigne after the Euro 96 group match between England and Scotland at Wembley stadium on June 15, 1996 in London, England. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

McCoist calls decision embarrassing

Former teammate McCoist suggested that the decision had nothing to do with the ex-player’s mental health. He also labelled the move an embarrassment.

Ally McCoist was teammates of Gazza’s during the Englishman’s three years at Ibrox and is a close friend of his. McCoist also described playing with Gascoigne as a “privilege”. He is noticeably angry at the move.

McCoist told Talksport:

“There’s absolutely no doubt that Gascoigne has been one of the players to brighten up Scottish football over the last 30/40 years, without no shadow of doubt.

“But you have to take a step back and look at it, he absolutely lit up Scottish football.

“How can they release something saying Paul Gascoigne has been inducted into the Scotland Hall of Fame; great, Paul gets a boost, Paul’s fans get a boost and then all of a sudden with nine games to go say it has been withdrawn?

“It’s an embarrassment, it’s an absolute embarrassment.”

Vinnie Jones “outraged”

The former Wimbledon man turned actor is also not happy with the decision. More than that, he called on mental health discriminatory bodies to intervene. He also called the Scottish league out for their hypocrisy. They were quite happy to have the player part of Scottish football at the time.

Paul Gascoigne and Vinnie Jones were rivals on the pitch but also friends off it. (Photo by Mark Leech/Getty Images)

Vinnie Jones told Talksport, “After football, if you develop some mental health problems that’s got to be addressed, that’s absolutely nothing to do with what he did in football.

And Gazza has worked his backside off over the past couple of years to sort these out.

“It’s disgraceful, absolutely disgraceful. This is a massive setback for the boy.”

“This is something that mental health people should get involved in.”

It’s not just footballers who’ve spoken out on the move. Former Labour spin doctor Alistair Campbell has also spoke out on the decision. He called the move “mental health discrimination”.

Expect many more people to be outspoken on the issue as the story develops.