MOTHERWELL manager Stephen Robinson has thanked his Rangers counterpart Graeme Murty for having the bravery to publicly absolve Cedric Kipre from any blame for the injury Ryan Jack suffered earlier this week.

Murty was savaged by many supporters of the Glasgow club on Thursday for refusing to criticise Kipre for the tackle which resulted in Jack being stretchered off in a Ladbrokes Premiership game at Ibrox on Wednesday night.

The midfielder, who has been one of the most consistent players for Rangers since joining them from Aberdeen in the summer, is set to miss the match against Celtic at Parkhead this afternoon as a result of the knock.

However, Robinson has described his opposite number, who was confirmed as Rangers manager until the end of the season last week, speaking out in defence of a rival player as “refreshing” and “brave”.

“There was no malice in it,” he said. “If you are a football person you know that. Football people know when somebody tries to do you and when they don’t. Yes, he has caught him when his man slides in and you don’t want to see anyone injured, but there is no malice in the tackle at all.

“Football people know that hence why Graeme Murty has said it because he knows what he is talking about. It is actually refreshing that there is a wee bit of honesty. But, as I say, Graeme is a football person who knows football.

“As a footballer, and lads like him and myself were, you know when somebody is trying to hurt you. Sometimes the momentum takes you through. If you put your head down sometimes you do take a bash.

“Graeme is the first to acknowledge that and it was brave of him to do so. Sometimes the right thing is not the most popular thing, but in this case it is just the truth. It is probably the mark of Graeme as a man and why he has stood up to be counted at Rangers and has taken the job on because that is the type of character that he is.”

Motherwell forward Ryan Bowman has targeted for some sickening abuse on social media websites after breaking the nose of Rangers centre half Fabio Cardoso as they jumped for a ball in the Betfred Cup semi-final at Hampden back in October.

Robinson is hopeful that Kipre, the 21-year-old French player, will avoid the same sort of backlash as a result of Murty coming out and defending him.

“Graeme and I spoke after the game and when he realised what type of boy Cedric is and how he is such a laid-back gentle giant we both acknowledged that is not the type of publicity any player needs,” he said. “It has affected Ryan Bowman, the comments that were made. So I am really glad Graeme has come and said what he did.”

Motherwell will hold a minute’s applause in memory of Phil O’Donnell, who passed away 10 years ago yesterday, before kick-off in their Premiership game against Hamilton at Fir Park today.

Meanwhile, Louis Moult, the Motherwell striker who will move to Preston in a £500,000 move on Monday, will bid farewell to the supporters at half-time.