THE UK's top football policing officer is to carry out an independent review of how matches in Scotland are policed.

Police Scotland has asked Deputy Chief Constable Mark Roberts, the National Police Chiefs' Council Football Lead, to conduct the review that will cover operational planning for matches, intelligence gathering and resource deployment.

The review comes just weeks after fans were injured in a crush at the first Old Firm game of the season.

Five people needed medical treatment following the incident at Parkhead as supporters tried to get into the stadium before the first Celtic v Rangers game of the season on September 2.

Will Kerr, Police Scotland's Deputy Chief Constable for Local Policing, said: "This review is not about a particular incident or match, but about the policing of football in a wider sense.

Evening Times:
Deputy Chief Constable Mark Roberts, the National Police Chiefs' Council Football Lead, who is to carry out an independent review of how matches in Scotland are policed

"Police Scotland has an enviable reputation around how it polices large events, including sporting events such as the Ryder Cup and Commonwealth Games.

"It is important, however, for a learning organisation such as Police Scotland to reflect on areas where we may be able to improve our procedures and learn from good practice elsewhere.

"I am very grateful that DCC Roberts has agreed to carry out this important review. I'm keen that he is able to speak to a number of stakeholders involved in football matches, from the SFA to SPFL right through to supporters' groups and football clubs."

DCC Roberts, of South Yorkshire Police, will lead a small team of experts to carry out the Independent Professional Assurance Review.

It is expected to be completed by the end of the year and will also examine how the policing of football felt to those involved, including supporters, clubs and wider stakeholders.

Celtic FC apologised for the incident and has held talks with police about what happened.

The club has also ordered an independent review that will look at factors such as what may have contributed to the incident and improvements that could be made to stop anything like that happening again.