UGLY scenes of violence marred the showcase Scottish Cup Final – with a number of players assaulted following a mass pitch invasion.
Thousands of fans streamed on to the pitch after Hibs won the match 3-2 with David Gray’s winning goal coming deep in injury time.
But jubilation quickly turned sour as violence erupted on the pitch.
Rangers players had to flee after six squad members were attacked and injured.
Assistant manager Davie Weir is also said to have been targeted.
Footage of the shameful scenes showed marauding fans causing havoc.
Order was only restored after mounted police were sent on to the pitch – while a cordon of officers was thrown across the halfway line to separate battling fans.
Afterwards, Scottish Football Association chief executive Stewart Regan said fans had displayed “contemptible behaviour” and he was “appalled by the scenes”.
The body launched a joint probe with Police Scotland into the scenes.
Mr Regan said: “What should have been a historic, memorable Scottish Cup final will now, sadly, be remembered for all the wrong reasons.”
For a time it looked like it might turn into a full-blown riot.
Celebrating Hibs fans ripped up parts of the Hampden turf and the goal posts were broken under the weight of fans climbing on top of them.
Security guards and police battled to retain order with 12 mounted officers taking to the pitch in scenes reminiscent of the riot at the end of the 1980 cup final, one of Scottish football’s darkest days.
A lap of honour for the Hibs players was immediately cancelled and Rangers players were handed their runners up medals in their dressing room.
Sources say the team remained in the dressing room in the face of “fears for their safety”.
It is believed that Lee Wallace, Andy Halliday and Jason Holt needed medical attention.
Following the game, Rangers issued a strongly worded statement branding the pitch-invading Hibs fans “disgraceful.”
A spokesman for the club said: “Rangers Football Club is shocked at the disgraceful behaviour of Hibs fans.
“Rangers players and staff were assaulted the fans who invaded the pitch.
“There can be no place for the violent behaviour witnessed and Rangers fully expect the Scottish Football Association and Police Scotland to launch an investigation to find out where security measures failed and why.
“The club would like to commend the Rangers fans for the restraint they showed under severe provocation.”
Hibs chairman Rod Petrie said he would apologise for the behaviour of his team’s fans.
Hibernian boss Alan Stubbs said: “I wish all the fans had left the pitch so we could celebrate it properly.
“We don’t condone what has just happened, but that is 114 years of hurt.
“Everyone’s safety is the most important thing.
“I can understand the euphoria that surrounded it.
“I don’t condone it, but I understand it.
“Whatever happens we will have to take on the chin and rightly so.
“From my point of view, we have to try to protect the reputation of the football club.
“It is over exuberance and it is relief. You don’t want to see anything like that because on the whole games are very well policed.”
Chief Superintendent Kenny MacDonald, of Police Scotland, said a “dedicated investigation team” had been set up to identify culprits.
He said: “Officers, including the force’s mounted branch, responded and brought the matter under control as quickly as possible.”