Steven Gerrard criticises Scott Brown for provoking Morelos and Kent
"The referee hasn't done anything about the Scott Brown situation, and we've been punished for it"
Rangers manager Steven Gerrard has had a pop at Celtic captain Scott Brown for provoking Ryan Kent and Alfredo Morelos during the Gers' 2-1 defeat at Celtic Park on Sunday.
Goals either side of half-time from Odsonne Edouard and James Forrest canceled out Kent's second-half strike to put Celtic 13 points clear at the top of the table with Brown involved in two incidents with Morelos and Kent.
Morelos was red carded for elbowing Brown in the face in the first-half before winger Ryan Kent punched the Celtic midfielder later on in the game.
Kent escaped booking, however, and could face a retroactive suspension, but Gerrard felt that Brown, who was on the receiving end of blows in both instances, was actually the provocateur.
😡 "I will deal with it internally. I can't defend him anymore. He will be punished"
Steven Gerrard left furious with Alfredo Morelos after his red card in the #OldFirm today.
Report: https://t.co/wBLPuiXBMa pic.twitter.com/ky0QaA4gCq
— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) March 31, 2019
"You're playing against a player that loves to antagonise," said Gerrard.
"The Alfredo Morelos incident comes from being provoked, the Ryan Kent incident comes from being provoked, and Andy Halliday at the end.
"There's 98% Celtic support in the stadium today, the Celtic players were right to celebrate and enjoy themselves of course. We did it in the last Old Firm, but to do it five or 10 yards away from our supporters is a lack of respect.
"Andy is well within his rights to protect his own people. The referee hasn't done anything about the Scott Brown situation, and we've been punished for it.
"Maybe (Halliday's red card) is deserved, but only if the guy who antagonised it from the beginning is punished as well."
Meanwhile Celtic manager Neil Lennon has condemned both incidents as unacceptable.
"He's been elbowed [by Morelos] and then pushed or punched in the face by another player and really Rangers should have been down to nine men," Lennon told BBC Scotland.
"Ryan Kent, after we scored the second goal, has either slapped or punched him in the face and it's just unacceptable at this level of football."