Explanation emerges for Bobby Madden missing Celtic vs Ross County at late notice

It’s always easy to wonder if there’s a big conspiracy or something brewing when a referee is suddenly removed from a fixture at short notice.

Bobby Madden was supposed to be the ref for Celtic’s clash with Ross County tonight, but he was stood down only a few hours before kick-off and it has led to a few questions.

Thankfully it sounds like he’s okay, but a report from The Daily Record has indicated that he was forced to miss out for Covid-19 related reasons.

For some reason he was part of a team of officials who travelled to Greece last weekend to take charge of the derby between Olympiacos and Panathinaikos, but one of the linesmen has since returned a positive covid test.

It’s believed that Madden did test negative but he was also identified as a close contact, so he’s been forced to isolate for a few days as a result.

It’s also suggested that someone else from the trip was in action as a linesman for Hamilton vs Hibs yesterday so they’ve had an apology from the SFA as a result, but thankfully it doesn’t appear that it’s been transmitted to anyone in the process.

Anthony Joseph from Sky Sports added to our understanding: “Bobby Madden was withdrawn from refereeing Ross County v Celtic tonight after being deemed a close contact of assistant David Roome, who has tested positive for #COVID19. They – and Graham Stewart – were in charge of Panathinaikos v Olympiacos last week. All 3 are now isolating,” he revealed.

And BBC Sport Scotland have reported that The Scottish FA have apologised to Hibernian and Hamilton Academical after it emerged that one of the assistant referees for their game on Saturday should have been self-isolating.

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Still trying to figure out exactly why Vidar Riseth hammered the ball across his own goal line that night in Perth....

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