Scotland’s referees have voted to strike next weekend after an unprecedented barrage of criticism directed towards them in recent weeks.
Scottish match officials are upset with the amount of flak that has come their way this season.
And there are increasing fears among referees over personal safety as a result of public criticism.
The decision to take strike action was reached at a referees’ union meeting held on Sunday afternoon, with unanimous backing.
There are six Scottish Premier League games scheduled for next weekend. There is also a full card in the Scottish Football League.
A newspaper report yesterday that revealed that 80% of the Category One officials had failed a written test on the rules of the game last February, was regarded by many at yesterday’s meeting as the last straw.
Celtic have voiced concerns about refereeing standards this season and last and BBC Scotland is reporting that the Glasgow club would welcome the strike.
It is understood Celtic hope that it could lead to a wider independent investigation and want UEFA to intervene in what they think is a refereeing crisis.
On Thursday, Celtic chairman John Reid called for the resignation of referee Dougie McDonald, saying “his position is completely untenable” after he was warned by the Scottish Football Association for lying about his reasons for overturning a penalty award.
In the wake of McDonald’s admission, SFA chief executive Stewart Regan has promised an overhaul of how referees are disciplined.
Celtic manager Neil Lennon was critical of the McDonald episode and has since questioned refereeing decisions after defeats to Rangers and Hearts.