Friday, December 3 2021

Dundee striker Leigh Griffiths has been charged by police after kicking a smoke bomb into a stand housing St Johnstone fans during a 2-0 League Cup defeat on Wednesday.

The Scotland international, who joined Dundee on loan from Celtic last month, has claimed he had only meant to remove the item from the pitch after it was thrown on following a Saints goal.

A Police Scotland spokesperson said: “Police Scotland can confirm that a 31-year-old man has been charged in relation to culpable and reckless conduct, following an incident at Dens Park, Dundee, on Wednesday, September 22. A report will be submitted to the Procurator Fiscal.”

The incident happened shortly after Shaun Rooney had scored the opening goal for the Scottish League Cup holders and was filmed by a supporter and posted on social media.

Dundee issued a statement on Thursday in which Griffiths apologised for his actions.

“Dundee Football Club and Leigh Griffiths would like to address a regrettable incident which occurred during last night’s Premier Sports Cup tie with St Johnstone at the Kilmac Stadium.

“Following the opening goal a smoke generator, among other items, was thrown onto the park by the visiting supporters. This pyrotechnic ended up back in the stand as Leigh kicked it to remove it from the field of play.”

Griffiths scored 123 goals in seven years at Celtic and most famously struck twice with free-kicks for Scotland against England in a World Cup qualifier in 2017.

However, he was not selected for Steve Clarke’s Euro 2020 squad and has not played for his country since November.

“It was regrettable that the pyrotechnic ended up back in the stand as my intention was just to remove it from the pitch,” Griffiths said.

“Having just lost a goal I was eager to get the match restarted as quickly as possible and I would like to apologise for any distress caused by this action.”

Griffiths could also face Scottish Football Association disciplinary action but the police charge could delay that process.

Dundee host Rangers in the Scottish Premiership on Saturday.

kca/lp

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