George Burley says he instigated a lifetime Scottish international ban for Barry Ferguson and Allan McGregor to keep the respect of his squad.
Burley’s actions came after the pair were involved in a late night drinking session following the defeat by Holland and for the V-signs they made in front of the Scottish media after being dropped to the bench for the subsequent game against Iceland.
In addition to their international careers now being over, Ferguson has lost the captaincy of Rangers whilst both have been fined two weeks’ wages and suspended for a fortnight by the Ibrox club.
Rangers said their actions had brought the club into disrepute and their long-term futures there remain uncertain.
Speaking over the weekend, Burley said:
It’s not a decision that was taken lightly, but the SFA have to set an example to other players.
I have to have the respect of the players and make tough decisions.
I met (SFA chief executive) Gordon Smith on Thursday and we talked through the arrangements at Cameron House and the events leading up to the game.
We knew we had to make sure what happened would never happen again and also we really wanted to draw a line under it.
At that stage, I hadn’t really seen any papers or watched the match again. When I did, I realised we needed to speak again.
The gestures had clearly made a lot of people very angry and this was obviously something completely different to the incidents at Cameron House.
We talked again first thing on Friday morning and Gordon, George Peat (SFA President) and myself were in agreement about what needed to be done.