Hearts manager John McGlynn has urged referees to give more protection to the skilful players in Scottish football after being frustrated over David Templeton's suspension.
Templeton accepted a two-match Scottish Football Association ban for kicking out at Hibernian captain James McPake in retaliation during last weekend's Edinburgh derby.
Templeton had found himself on the end of a number of hard challenges in the 1-1 draw, including a cynical foul by Gary Deegan that might have earned a red card, and McGlynn feels that Scottish officials must come to the aid of the more talented individuals in the game.
"It's not new in the Scottish game and not sour grapes on my part, you don't want to lose these guys from the Scottish game as they are being kicked up and down," McGlynn said.
"If there is talent in the Scottish game and Templeton comes under that category, then these players need protection.
"Just now guys like (James) Forrest at Celtic and (Paul) McGowan at St Mirren are skilful, skilful players and as a result probably get more treatment in regards to being the most fouled players in the league.
"It was very uncharacteristic for David to kick out like that and his record suggests that too. I'm not suggesting that there was any excuse for the kick-out and David will have to realise if he stays fit and in good form, he might come in for some special treatment."
McGlynn will have to do without Templeton for Hearts' league meetings with Inverness on Saturday and with Aberdeen the following weekend, and the Tynecastle boss admits it will be a blow to his side.
"I think if you watched David against St Johnstone, he has great feet and in that game he won the penalty for the first goal and scored the second," McGlynn said. "In the meantime he laid on numerous chances for others as well - he's a key player.
"Perhaps if you were our opponents the following week watching that game, you would try to make sure he wasn't going to have as big an influence on the game."
- David Templeton
- Scottish Football Association