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Dundee United assistant disagrees with Deila over red, blames Celtic players

The reaction of Celtic's players has been blamed for Ryan McGowan's sending off, by Dundee United's assistant boss.

Dundee United assistant boss Simon Donnelly has defended Ryan McGowan after his red card against Celtic.

McGowan was sent off in a bad tempered finale as Celtic won 4-0 against United in the Scottish Cup quarter-final.

It was a demoralising loss for United, who had lost the League Cup Final 3-0 to Celtic days earlier, and face the same opponents in the SPL this weekend.

Donnelly told BBC Scotland that he felt the reaction of Celtic's players to the tackle on Liam Henderson influenced the referee, who had sent off Anthony Stokes moments earlier for a clash with Paul Paton.

He said: "I've not seen the McGowan tackle at the end. I've had reports it's a good, strong tackle. I think the reaction of the Celtic players on the back of them just having a red card possibly influences the referee, but I'll need to see it again."

Watching it back could make him reconsider, because the reaction of Celtic manager Ronny Deila was entirely the opposite, blasting the tackle as dangerous.

He is quoted by Football365: "It is stupid to tackle like that on the sidelines. We need to get that out of football.

"It is a youngster standing there with a little trick. You can either stay or go in with both feet, as I see it. You can injure him for life. But I have to see it one more time."

The chances of Dundee successfully appealing the red card so McGovern can avoid suspension are slim, and Deila would likely contest any such attempt. Like Stokes he appears set to miss the weekend's league clash.

Celtic will face Inverness Caledonian Thistle in the semi-final next month as they continue their attempt to win a domestic treble.

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