Hearts facing security questions

Hearts face serious questions from the Scottish Premier League over how a supporter was able to breach security and reach Celtic manager Neil Lennon in his technical area at Tynecastle.

Hearts face serious questions from the Scottish Premier League over how a supporter was able to breach security and reach Celtic manager Neil Lennon in his technical area at Tynecastle.

SPL chief executive Neil Doncaster confirmed an investigation was launched immediately after the incident, which followed Gary Hooper’s second-half goal during Celtic’s 3-0 win last night.

A fan clambered from the Hearts section of the main stand on to the trackside and charged towards the Celtic boss, who was on the touchline.

A 26-year-old man will appear at Edinburgh Sheriff Court later in connection with the incident, but the SPL investigation will focus on Hearts’ security measures.

Doncaster told Sky Sports News: “We’ll be focusing on the situation that led to him being able to get access to the perimeter track and that’s something we’ll be discussing in detail with the home club.”

Doncaster added: “The investigation started immediately the incident happened last night. We’ll be talking with the SFA and with all the parties involved to investigate it as thoroughly and as speedily as possible.”

Any possible sanctions facing Hearts could be influenced by a previous breach of security at their stadium almost exactly two years ago, when Hibernian striker Derek Riordan was confronted by supporters on the pitch.

Doncaster added: “We’ll be certainly talking to both clubs, the police and also to our own match delegate, who witnessed the incident, and taking reports from all of those and investigate it thoroughly.

“It’s absolutely vital that any lessons that need to be learned are learned and we can put them into effect.”

The Scottish Football Association are liaising with their colleagues at Hampden.

SFA chief executive Stewart Regan said in a statement: “In discussions with Neil Doncaster this morning, the Scottish Premier League have confirmed they have initiated an investigation into the unsavoury events at Tynecastle last night.

“I am also aware that Heart of Midlothian are carrying out their own review of internal security measures at the club and have agreed to co-operate fully with both the police and the football authorities.

“I reiterate my condemnation of this blight on the image of Scottish football and expect to see robust plans in place to protect players and officials at all times.”

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