OLD Firm football matches do not cause domestic abuse, but there does appear to be an increase in incidents that coincides with matches.
To expect the lack of Old Firm matches next season to lessen the impact of domestic violence is missing the point.
The people who are arrested after a football match are unlikely to be first time offenders and more likely will be serial abusers who have been drinking that day and are in a state of heightened tension.
Domestic abuse statistics also go up at Christmas and New Year, other days when alcohol and tension can be a factor.
Dr Mairead Tagg is right to call for greater understanding of the problem and better education of what people in a relationship should be able to expect from their partners.
There are many factors that can lead to increased chances of an incident on particular days, but Dr Tagg and her colleagues see the problems all year round.
Even greater understanding is needed to encourage more women to report abuse and seek help and appropriate sentences imposed on those taken to court and found guilty.
There may be exacerbating factors that lead to abusers manifest their violent nature but there is never an excuse.