Motherwell teen who bottled Celtic fan at Ibrox Old Firm clash, is banned from football for five years
Lee Findlay, 19, struck Owen Murphy at Ibrox Stadium on January 2, 2023.The Gers hosted their city rivals in a match which ended 2-2 with Kyogo Furuhashi netting a late equalizer for the visitors.Findlay - then just 17 - scanned the away section near the end of the match before he picked up a Buckfast bottle and launched it at the Celtic fans.Mr Murphy suffered two cuts to his forehead and is permanently scarred.Celtic have since rejected tickets for Ibrox which the Hoops attributed to safety concerns at the stadium.The club cited incidents where fans and staff have been hit by objects thrown by home supporters.The last game between the pair was played entirely in front of Rangers supporters which Celtic went on to win 1-0.First offender Findlay, from Motherwell, pled guilty at Glasgow Sheriff Court to culpable and reckless conduct.Prosecutor Lauren Aitchison said: "As the match was finishing, Mr Murphy was struck on the head with a bottle of Buckfast that had been thrown from the directions of the home supporters."Mr Murphy was noted to be bleeding from the top of his head and as a result attended the medical room."A doctor reported that Mr Murphy suffered two small cuts to his head which had to be closed and glued.Miss Aitchison added: "It was noted that the wound will leave scarring on the head of Mr Murphy."Police later attended and reviewed CCTV which showed Findlay walking towards the segregation area.Miss Aitchison: "He was seen to be scanning the away area, picked up a bottle and threw it in the direction of the away fans."Findlay was arrested at his home six days later.Haroun Malik, defending, told the sentencing that his client - a season ticket holder - did not intent to hit anyone.The lawyer added: "He is the youngest member of the supporters club he attended with that day - he has cut his alcohol use and is ashamed of his actions."Mr Malik initially asked the sheriff not to impose unpaid work and later stated that the time could be used to work to repay the victim.Sheriff Mark McGuire said: "In the atmosphere of an Old Firm game, he threw a bottle at the away support, hitting a fan and permanently disfigured him."Outwith the stadium it would be bad enough, within the stadium in the atmosphere of an Old Firm game match it could have sparked a rally."Findlay was ordered to do 150 hours of unpaid work and put under supervision for 12 months.He was also tagged for 120 days keeping him indoors between 8pm and 6am as well as the football banning order.Findlay will also pay Mr Murphy £300 compensation.Sheriff McGuire cited the young person's sentencing guidelines as well as Findlay's rehabilitation and punishment for the matter.