SFA chief calls for Dida ban
Smith slams Milan star
By Peter Fraser. Last Updated: 05/10/07 9:23am
Scottish Football Association chief executive Gordon Smith has called for Milan goalkeeper Dida to be banned for diving.
The Brazilian was involved in an altercation with a Celtic supporter who ran onto the pitch and appeared to tap Dida in the face in the final minute of Milan's 2-1 UEFA Champions League defeat at Celtic Park on Wednesday.
Dida briefly chased the Celtic fan before collapsing and leaving the field on a stretcher.
Smith, though, believes Dida made the most of the incident involving the fan - who has since been banned from Celtic for life - and wants the Milan star to receive the same punishment as Lithuania's Saulius Mikoliunas.
The winger was banned for two games after being found guilty of diving in Lithuania's 3-1 Euro 2008 qualifying defeat to Scotland in September and Smith wants Uefa to use the same yardstick for Dida.
"I was at the match at Celtic Park but I did not see the fan come onto the pitch," Smith told the Daily Record.
"From what I've been told he made what could be described as a friendly pat at the goalkeeper, who then decided to fall over. To see him leave the park on a stretcher could be described as farcical.
"I would hope that Uefa act in accordance with their recent judgment on Mikoliunas. I would certainly hope the incident would have no effect on the outcome of the match."
Uefa are set to meet on Friday to decide if there is a need for an enquiry into the incident and Smith acknowledges that, until the European governing body pass judgement, the SFA is unable to become involved.
"The fact of the matter is that Celtic will have a case to answer because their security was breached by the supporter who came on the Park," added Smith.
"Therefore there is nothing we can do to help them at this stage.
"What Uefa have to decide is whether Dida was guilty of simulation and whether it was intended to make the problem with the fan look even worse by indicating that he had been assaulted."