Former Celtic striker John Hartson has appeared to deliberately misrepresent Rangers striker Alfredo Morelos’ gesture to the Motherwell fans in order to justify Leigh Griffiths attacking a fan with an object.
The burly former Celtic striker’s Old Firm meltdown has drawn plenty of laughs from the Rangers support after his previous comments in the wake of the 2-1 win at Celtic Park.
But in making up that Alfredo Morelos stuck the middle finger up to Motherwell fans whilst playing down the fact Leigh Griffiths threw something at a Kilmarnock fan, things have taken a more sinister turn.
Speaking on BBC Sportsound [23/01/20] Hartson was comparing Griffiths launching something at a fan in the crowd at Rugby Park to Morelos responding to abuse at Fir Park.
“The incident we are talking about the other night might be when he came off. He was almost taking his shin-pads off and rolling his sock down and somebody was hanging over giving him stick and abuse,” said Hartson.
“Leigh has just underarm thrown his bit of tape towards him. I don’t think there was any malice intended.
“It was a bit of frustration from Leigh. But I just feel that was about it really and I don’t think it will go any further.
“It was different, Morelos went like that with his fist, middle finger towards the away fans.
“There was nothing like that last night he just threw a bit of tape into the crowd. It was just off his leg after removing his shin-pad, I don’t think it was anything to get particularly concerned about.
“I think you are looking at two separate incidents.”
The incredible thing is that no-one on the BBC radio show corrects John Hartson for this blatant lie about the Alfredo Morelos incident.
Morelos was given a second yellow for giving the Motherwell fans a “get it up ye” in the 2-0 win at Fir Park and subsequently banned for the trip to Hibs.
But Hartson has got one thing right – we are looking at two separate incidents. Whilst both received abuse, only one took it up a level by throwing something at a supporter.
Let’s be absolutely clear on this.
There is no planet, in the known universe or beyond, where a player throwing something at a supporter is somehow better than gesturing to fans who’ve been giving you dogs abuse all game. Period.
When Leigh Griffiths gets abuse, it’s excuse enough to attack a fan. When Morelos gets abuse – including racial slurs at Celtic Park – he’s ordered to control himself.
Griffiths ‘only threw it underarm’ – another lie for what it’s worth – Morelos ‘threatened to kill everyone in the stadium’. It’s pitiful.
Rangers fans generally aren’t interested in indulging in pathetic post-mortems and desperate attempts to get opposition players banned.
History has proven that to be largely the preserve of the Celtic support.
But what they are furious about is the inexplicable double standards which ruin the game up here and appear to bring fury on Ibrox, but put a halo around Parkhead.
Here’s what some the club’s supporters have had to say on Twitter:
Any Rangers fan I know couldn’t care less about Singing, gestures or what happens during 90mins
What we are sick of is the lies, fake outrage & hypocrisy from the media
Fair & balanced reporting? Allowing blatant lies like this from ‘pundits’, with no correction, is a joke
— Four Lads Had a Dream (@4ladshadadream) January 24, 2020
In defending Griffiths on Sportsound last night, John Hartson propagated a lie that Morelos gave the Motherwell fans the middle finger in his goal celebration last month.
Obviously went unchallenged.
— Ted (@NewcoTed) January 24, 2020
What everyone sees v what John Hartson sees pic.twitter.com/oS9V0K67rV
— Derek Clark (@derekclarksport) January 24, 2020
Very difficult for media outlets to take John Hartson seriously now. Didn’t have an issue a few days after the OF game but now going apoplectic and lying on national radio.
Clearly being fed a line from somewhere
— Douglas Dickie (@DouglasDickie1) January 24, 2020
John Hartson on last nights @BBCSportsound
“This is different, Morelos went like that with his fist, middle finger towards the away fans,”
That is not correct, why did you not correct this @BBCDavidCurrie ?
— Mr M (@MBS1872) January 24, 2020
More #editoriallyfair coverage from @BBCSportsound last night. This time @BBCDavidCurrie allows John Hartson to blatantly lie about a Rangers player just to satisfy the Welshman's own inability to avoid bias in his opinions. Laughable. https://t.co/3b03gPl3eT
— Frankie (@GersnetOnline) January 24, 2020
Has John Hartson stopped crying yet ?
— Kanté (@darrentaylor_x) January 24, 2020
A hink John Hartson is a Morelos yellow card away from becoming the new naked rambler. The guys unhinged.
— Jamba (@JambaWATP21) January 24, 2020
John Hartson: pic.twitter.com/wRsgonJiZy
— OnlyAnExcuse (@OnlyAnExcuse) January 24, 2020
Listening to him talking about both incidents I don’t think John Hartson seen either of them… describes them both wrong 😂 https://t.co/RngRoam5JB
— Joshua Chisholm (@ChizzyMate) January 24, 2020
I think it's time for rangers to come out and say something let's bring this BBC nonsense to a head we must protect the club
— William Thomson (@William00727295) January 24, 2020
Neither @JohnHartson10 or @BBCSportScot have a shred of credibility left. The double standards and hypocrisy when it comes to Rangers is now so blatant it's laughable. Perhaps they are blinded to it by bitterness. Perhaps they just don't care. Either way, they are now irrelevant.
— Blues Brother (@wavydot) January 24, 2020
Absolutely incredible that he is on tht show telling lies about Alfredo and it goes unchallenged, comedy show
— Chris Mcgrath (@chrismcgrath87) January 24, 2020
Rangers should write to the BBC and call him out on that lie then. If other clubs are going to do that with broadcasters for less then why not?
— David MacDonald (@d_mac2912) January 24, 2020
Is it going to take a young Morelos to come out and say he’s struggling with mental health issues before he’s giving a break. Or are they going to continue hounding the young lad until his mental health is actually affected? He’s being bullied by men who should know better!!
— Deek (@DeekMc1980) January 24, 2020
Did anyone pull him up on his lies?
— Chris McLaughlin (@Chr1sMcLaughlin) January 24, 2020
Correct me if I'm wrong didn't griffiths throw the tape over arm and not underarm as hartson stated afterall there is a difference ..overarm being aggressive.
— CHARLIE MURDOCH 🇬🇧🏴🇬🇧 (@murdoch_charles) January 24, 2020
Given his tragic comments here, what’re the chances John Hartson is one of the Celtic fans who’ve signed a pathetic petition to see Kris Boyd banned for his comments on the incident?