Rangers boss lifts BBC ban after apology


Rangers manager Ally McCoist has lifted a ban on speaking to BBC journalists after the broadcaster issued an apology following an item broadcast on Friday.

McCoist had complained after a BBC Scotland broadcast appeared to show him smirking when questioned on sectarianism.  However it later emerged that the shot of McCoist smiling had been in response to a different question.

The Rangers boss had vowed not to speak to the BBC until he received an apology and said:

”While they asked the question, they showed a shot of me when I’d just answered another question. The whole thing was put together to show I had a flippant attitude towards either religious bigotry or trouble between Old Firm fans.

”As most people know, I don’t have a flippant attitude towards those subjects. Far from it. There was a comment in the piece, after showing me smiling, when the reporter said: ‘Well it might not bother Ally McCoist.’ Well, believe me, it does bother Ally McCoist.”

The apology from the editor BBC read: “I am writing to you regarding the concerns you have raised in relation to an item transmitted on BBC News last Friday evening.

“Overall, we stand by the merits of our report revealing the extent of violence after Old Firm derbies and the cost of policing these matches. However, we do accept that the sequence involving comments from Rangers’ manager Alistair McCoist could have given the impression that he did not take the issue seriously.

“It was not our intention to misrepresent Mr McCoist. The BBC accepts that Rangers Football Club and Alistair McCoist treat the issue of violence and disorder surrounding football matches as a very serious matter.

“We accept that offence has been caused by an inappropriate edit in the piece as transmitted and for that we apologise.”