SPL chiefs 'stupid'

Lee Wilkie has called SPL chiefs "stupid and arrogant" for ordering Dundee United's league match against Hearts to go yesterday.

Lee Wilkie has called SPL chiefs "stupid and arrogant" for ordering Dundee United's league match against Hearts to go yesterday.

The defender believes the game should have been postponed following the death of Motherwell's Phil O'Donnell, just after Saturday's match with United.

Wilkie said: "It is a joke and an absolute embarrassment that we are being made to play.

"The match means nothing when you consider the recent tragic event."

O'Donnell collapsed towards the end of Motherwell's match against Dundee United at Fir Park on Saturday and he later died of heart failure.

United boss Craig Levein spoke to his players during training on Tuesday and it was considered they were in no fit state to face Hearts.

Chairman Eddie Thompson contacted the SPL to request a postponement of the game but was told that it had to go ahead.

The matches between Aberdeen and Inverness CT, and Kilmarnock and Falkirk were also to be played.

But the SPL have agreed to Celtic's request to postpone their match against Rangers, which was also scheduled for yesterday.

Wilkie said: "Surely if Celtic can call their game off, so can we and that's what our players wanted.

"Ideally, the SPL should have called off all the fixtures as a mark of respect.

"It's hard to focus on a game of football when you''e seen something so tragic happen to a fellow professional."

SPL secretary Iain Blair described Wilkie's remarks as "an understandable and emotional response" but defended the decision for three matches to go ahead on yesterday, and says the organisation has made a balanced judgment. - BBC

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