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Page last updated at 11:34 GMT, Friday, 22 May 2009 12:34 UK

Bougherra has red card overturned

Madjid Bougherra comforts injured goalkeeper Jamie Langfield
Bougherra was sent off after a challenge on goalkeeper Jamie Langfield

Rangers' Madjid Bougherra is free to play in Sunday's league title decider as his red card against Aberdeen has been reduced to a yellow on appeal.

The defender was sent off for a challenge on Dons goalkeeper Jamie Langfield in Rangers' 2-1 win at Ibrox.

The Scottish FA review panel have also reduced the red card given to the Dons' Charlie Mulgrew in the same match.

Kyle Lafferty has been referred to to the SFA disciplinary committee for his part in Mulgrew's dismissal.

Rangers forward Lafferty fell to the turf dramatically when approached by Mulgrew on Saturday despite minimal contact between the pair.

The Northern Irishman has since apologised and been fined by his club for feigning injury to get the Aberdeen full-back sent-off.

Referee Stuart Dougal, who officiated over the match at Ibrox had said that, in retrospect, neither Bougherra nor Mulgrew deserved their punishment.

Charlie Mulgrew and Kyle Lafferty

Lafferty feigns head-butt injury

Bougherra is now able to play for Rangers in the weekend's final round of SPL games, when they travel to Tannadice to face Dundee United needing a victory to clinch the title.

"It's difficult to be focused because you don't know if you are going to play or not," said the Algerian international.

"But the decision from the referee (to admit he was wrong) came quickly and when I heard that, I was confident. I was happy and I had a good feeling.

"When I thought I would miss the game, I was frustrated because this is a big game and you wait all year to play in a game like this.

"But, when I saw the replay after the game, I was confident of the appeal."

Aberdeen will also have Mulgrew available for their important match against Hibernian, which they must win and hope that United lose if they are to qualify for the Europa League.

"On Saturday I was devastated at the time because I knew I had done nothing wrong," Mulgrew told his club's website.

"It was a horrible feeling. The team had started the game so well and we will never know what would have happened if I had not been sent off.

"I am pleased Kyle has apologised and the referee has admitted he made a mistake.

Bougherra set for 'biggest' match

"As far as I am concerned, the matter is now closed, and I'm just really looking forward to Sunday now and being available to help the team in what is a massive game."

Lafferty's case will be discussed at the next meeting of the SFA disciplinary committee, which is scheduled to take place before the start of next season.

Therefore, Lafferty is also free to play on Sunday as any suspension would not come into effect until then.

Following Saturday's match, Dougal announced he was retiring as a top-class official a week early and would not be involved in the SPL's final weekend.

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see also
Old Firm trio face SFA punishment
22 May 09 |  Scottish Premier
Rangers fine play-acting Lafferty
18 May 09 |  Rangers
Ref Dougal bows out a week early
18 May 09 |  Scotland
Smith upset by red card decisions
16 May 09 |  Rangers
Rangers 2-1 Aberdeen
16 May 09 |  Scottish Premier
Bougherra set for 'biggest' match
22 May 09 |  Scotland

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