A Roman God, a New Year, a Paycheque a Sports Jacket and that thing called football!


A Roman God, a New Year, a Paycheque a Sports Jacket and that thing called football!

Guest Blog by Brogan Rogan Trevino and Hogan

Good Morning,

Can I start by wishing everyone who reads this blog a happy, peaceful and prosperous 2013.

In a few weeks’ time a couple of working class lads from Walsall and Wolverhampton will receive a reasonably sizeable cheque through the door. The money will be entirely expected and meticulously accounted for. A similar cheque will have arrived last year, and both will expect the process to repeat itself automatically this time next year.

The sum concerned will be sizeable—many thousands of pounds— and does not come from any insurance policy, institutional pension plan or other type of financially regulated investment. Further, in order to receive a similar amount next year, the two men will have to do precisely nothing! The money will simply come automatically!

Magic eh?

Well no—not really.

You see Neville and James ( for that is what they are called ) earned this money many years ago by completing a job of work, and they have been getting paid for the same job year in and year out ever since!

Except that you don’t know them as Nevile and James! No you may know them as Jim Lea ( who? you may say ) and Noddy Holder (aka Neville John Holder MBE ) the co author of that perennial Christmas classic “Merry Christmas Everybody”.

These two clever boys came up with their “pension” song by making a Christmas cracker out of tunes they had written and discarded in the past. Lea’s chords from years before provided the tune for the verses, while an earlier rejected composition of Holder’s became the chorus, and in this way it was the past work of both men that secured their future—even back in 1974!

As the song is played to death on Radio, in clubs, in pubs, in shops, on TV and everywhere else at Christmas, the New Year always brings a cheque of sizeable proportions for Messrs Lea and Holder.

However there were four members of Slade and not two, I hear you say!

Whilst that is correct, not every member of the band shares the royalties for ever more, with only the actual composers receiving the big bucks year on year — unless of course the gang of four agreed otherwise between themselves – as sometimes happens—but often doesn’t — in bands and other artistic collaborations!

And that, dear reader, neatly takes me to the current topic of the day on this here planet!!! The reconstruction, reorganisation and profit sharing in Scottish Fitba!!!

It strikes me that the SFA, SPL and SFL all want to come up with their own version of the pension song or product — Something that will make future performances interesting and lucrative for ever more without anyone having to put in too much effort in future.

Of course it is recognised that the clubs at the top of the financial tree have the greatest influence in composing this song, but there is an insistence, and so a desire, that even the minor band members should get a greater share of the royalties going forward.

All very honourable. All very interesting,— and all completely missing the point in my humble opinion.

Now, there is a clamour from the fans that the proposed structure of 12 – 12—18 is flawed and leads to daft consequences when worked through. We want 14- 14 – 14 say many fans or 16- 14 – 12 or some other composition altogether!!

Oh—and the fans want the chairmen to consult the fans before making a decision on anything, and they want Messrs Regan, Doncaster and Longmuir to stop telling fans that they need to be “educated” about what is best for the game!

All very noble! All very interesting, —and all completely missing the point once again in my humble opinion.

Jock Stein once famously proclaimed that football is nothing without fans— almost everyone knows that. Yet how many actually stop to consider those words and what he meant.

There is nothing without fans!!!!!

How many times have you heard commentators, journalists, ex players and even fans refer to the fans as “the paying customers” ?  This phrase has made its way into common parlance and is rarely- if ever- challenged or qualified.

So I will ask—is that what the football fan is prepared to be called—“The paying customer”?— is that it?

Are you, dear reader, a paying customer?—and nothing more?

Or is a football fan a “member of a club”—a “ supporter of a club” or even “part” of a club?

If you are just a paying customer does that mean that anyone who turns up at a ground and pays over some money on a solitary Saturday afternoon is to be seen in exactly the same way as the guy or gal who has been a season ticket holder for years and years?

Does the person who sits behind their keyboard and blogs and comments for Britain on matters football—but who never goes to a game or who does not spend a penny following or promoting their proclaimed club – have the same strength of voice as that season ticket holder—or even the guy who stumps up the cash to view a game once a year?

Not a chance in my view!!!

Equally though, if you have a Football Club Board who do nothing whatsoever to attract people into the club apart from throw out a team on a Saturday Afternoon with mixed degrees of success – are they worthy of support from the “paying customer” or anyone else for that matter?

In my view the answer is no— a very loud —NO!!!

If we are going to reconstruct Scottish Football then I am sorry you have to start by looking at exactly what it is you are trying to reconstruct—reconstruct being the appropriate and important word.

The job is to reconstruct—and regain— viable and important interest in Scottish Football and the teams—or clubs—who play in Scotland.

League reconstruction is only part of that process, and the redistribution of television money is only part of the league reconstruction part of the process!

The month of January is named after the Roman God Janus—who had two heads— one for looking forward and one for looking back. Janus was the God of transition—The God of change— and it was always clear that you could only have change going forward by casting an eye back to the past—to see what you wanted to keep from that past, to see what you wanted to jettison, and to see what could be learned from past times.

In the past , football crowds were far larger, revenues proportionally bigger and closer together when comparing clubs, and consequently it might be said that the football product was much better on the park—with various teams outwith the two big Glasgow teams—please do remember the Jags come from Glasgow too and that in the past Clyde and Third Lanark were also natives— competing for and winning trophies.

Nowadays, football clubs have lower attendances—unless of course one of the smaller teams ( I refuse to use the derogatory and well hackneyed phrase that is banded about re smaller Scottish Clubs ) gets to a Hampden final when low and behold anything between 20,000 and 30,000 lost football fans appear as if out of nowhere!!

And hey—if you happen to be a fan of the Ibrox Club or the Parkhead club—don’t go getting too comfy in your seat— where the hell were some of you before Seville or Manchester?

The point is that football is like politics — it all means nothing without participation— real participation. That means fans buying into, spending money on and in, and promoting their club at every opportunity. It means the clubs and their boards using every trick in the book to generate income away from the football pitch. A “Club” in law is no more than a collection of people coming together for a common purpose and a football club is perfectly capable of having genuine “club activity” which does not primarily involve football.

Where are the regional and local initiatives to promote the social aspects of football clubs? Do the facilities for women need upgrading to help persuade more mothers and girlfriends to come to the ground whether that be for games or other events or functions?

In a time of never ending football memorabilia, how many people went to their club shop this Christmas and bought merchandise for family and friends – even if the same family and friends support another club? How many people invite visitors or non football supporting friends to a game on a Saturday—even if it is only every now and then?

In short what do you do to support your club—and what can that club do to get more and more people involved in the club itself or its functions? And what functions could that club become involved in using existing facilities and resources?

Is there a kids club? A  weekday crèche? Are there facilities that are not used six days a week which could be used for community groups who have nothing to do with football—or even sport? Should the club hold daft things like race nights, bingo nights— functions that may well attract people who would no more likely  go to a football ground on a Saturday than suddenly develop Noddy Holder style sideburns?

How many people take an old shirt or T shirt or towel bearing the club colours on holiday to give to a waiter or a stranger or someone who has no connection with the club—with a view to creating a fan or someone with a bit of interest who might just one day become a season ticket holder or even an occasional “paying customer” at the door?

Further, are there folk out there who could actually go along and volunteer services for their club for nothing and so save the club from spending hard earned cash out of necessity? Could you be a gateman? Could you perform a task for your club on a voluntary basis?

You may think that a daft or utopian ideology but sports clubs traditionally always had a social purpose as well as a sporting one. Clubs were a focus for a locality, or a workforce, or a congregation or just about any group of people who want to come together for sporting or social purposes. Further those who volunteered their services for the common good often got great local recognition for their dedication and spirit.

Ask any Dons fan about Teddy Scott—who although a paid employee was Aberdeen FC through and through—pay or no pay!

The clamour for change in football should not be blinded by the words of the three official bodies and the more vocal chairmen of the clubs that want to play in the league – or not as the case may be. Change should come from the fans of the game up—but to be honest until the fans—or should I say the mysteriously disappearing armchair fans—actually come out and support their clubs a lot more often, then we are not going to see valuable and worthwhile change no matter what the league set up or composition.

On Saturday, I listened to Off The Ball on Radio Scotland where the contributors waxed lyrical about journalists of yesteryear who made the game and broadcasting interesting. Jimmy Sanderson, Bob Crampsey et al – they all got a mention.

The discussion sparked a memory for me when they came to discuss the legend that is Arthur Montford—famously referred to by Jock Stein as “ The Sportsjacket” with reference to his never ending collection of blazers.

Arthur was a journalist—both print and broadcast— with the BBC and then STV since 1957 in terms of television—and with the Evening Times and other papers in terms of the written press.

A lifelong follower of Morton and a keen Golfer and golf commentator, Arthur has been retired this many a year although he can still be seen walking up and down Byres Road occasionally. At one time he became Chairman of Morton and he used to write in the club programme on a regular basis—possibly still does! He is by all accounts a nice man—a good man— sufficiently good and of sufficient standing to have been elected as the Rector of Glasgow University in 1975—beating George Brown and Janey Buchan ( if you don’t know who they were then look them up! )— in the process.

He was the first sports journalist to hold that post.

In his Rectorial address Arthur went to great lengths to highlight what can be achieved if volunteers— individuals— club members if you like— put their shoulders to the wheel and strive for change, for a common purpose, and for society in general. He stressed that such communal effort brought about change—brought about improvement— brought about advancement in numerous situations. This was only three years after Jimmy Reid had used the same platform to denounce the “Rat Race” declaring “ I am not a rat!”.

For football to change in this country we need action—action by the fans—action by the clubs—action by the journalists and commentators to highlight initiatives and opportunities for our football clubs to play a greater part in our communities— from kids to pensioners, from toddlers to mums and dads, local residents to occasional visitors.

That is the way to make your voice heard and to make that voice count. That is the way to bring about the change that you want for the future.

There were four members of Slade—but only two wrote the words and music to Merry Christmas Everybody and it is they who earned the right to the pension royalties for ever more. The other two bit part players did not!

Janus was meant to oversee transition to the future by casting an eye on the past and learning from what went before—as should we when considering Scottish Football—and in that spirit you will find a link to the whole of Arthur Montford’s address below— there are things worth learning there.

Here’s to the future—-NOW—– its only just begun!

Click to access UGSD00029.pdf


About the author

broganrogantrevinoandhogan author

Boot wearing football, sport & total nonsense fan-- Gourmet, Bon Viveur and eedgit! - Oh and I write a bit occasionally!

522 Comments so far

SeniorPosted on1:23 am - Jan 14, 2013

Apologies BRTH.

I must comment first on icemans excellent post. This is the kernel of the argument. Iceman is absolutely correct. I have been advocating for a long time now that the only option left for Scottish football is a disciplined boycott. We have, of course, people whom I call woolly thinkers, toying around with the idea that you can fight these guys with kid gloves, and that “we are above that kind of behaviour” mentality, well let me tell you this, if we continue with this boy-scout attitude, then either the gangsters win and if not the game is destroyed for good anyway.

Iceman I raise my glass to you. The game is totally corrupt and has been for many decades. The MSM, when push came to shove, acted like those Zombies you see in those old black and white films that when commanded the rise up as one and defend their masters.
Most of us on here are wringing our hands and hoping our big sister will come and sort it out for us, but friends it ain’t going to happen unless we mobilise all our courage and energy we are lost.

BRTH I will read your post at leisure and respond when I calm down. Sorry again.

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Humble PiePosted on2:03 am - Jan 14, 2013

Another excellent blog BRTH.

Although I still think there is some debate to be had regarding what constitutes a football fan.

Obviously the majority of cash generated in Scottish football comes from the season ticket holders and irregular attendees at matches, however many people who, for reasons of distance or mobility, are unable to actually attend matches. In my humble opinion, most of these people still consider themselves to be fans of a particular club and many provide their financial support by purchasing replica kit, club publications and other merchandising.

In this digital age, a good many people also pay to watch matches live online and, it could be argued, even those who subscribe to Sky or ESPN specifically to get access to live games featuring their chosen team, should also be considered ‘fans’.

For some clubs (particularly those with the largest number of supporters) this additional revenue is not insignificant and losing a large enough percentage of this income would have an impact on their club’s overall sustainability.

In Australia, for instance, there is no specific designation of a fan or supporter. Australians don’t ask “which team do you support?” instead they ask “who do you barrack for?” (barrack being the equivalent of ‘shout’). I suggest that there is a far larger number of people in Scotland who ‘shout’ for a particular team than actually attend matches. Should these ‘fans’ be left out of the debate over what happens to Scottish football? Should the oft-maligned ‘armchair supporter’ be ignored in the proposed restructure of the game?

I have heard a number of commentators attempt to raise this issue on phone-ins on SSB and Radio Scotland in the last week or so (though it was never really addressed by the callers or the panel). Personally, I think that the idea that only season ticket holders should be viewed as ‘real’ supporters is divisive and will only help to break the current consensus that is emerging among fans of all clubs that something is rotten in the State of Fitba’ that needs to be addressed.

Notwithstanding that issue, football is an extremely important part of Scottish culture. What happens in football, both on and off the field, has an impact in the streets of Scotland which cannot be understated. People live and breathe football in this country and the authorities know it. Untold numbers of people go to their graves draped in the colour of their chosen team, many of whom will not have been to a game for some years. That’s how important it is.

There is no agrument that the game in Scotland is in a perilous state and that something has to be done about it. However the issue is far too important to be left to media and corporate interests. It is absolutely imperitive that as many fans as possible have their say in how the game gets taken forward. Forums like this one provide an opportunity for reasoned discussion and analysis of the issues at stake and will hopefully provide one vehicle for the vox populi to be heard in the corridors of Hampden.

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” Margaret Mead

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StevieBCPosted on5:14 am - Jan 14, 2013

What jumped out of that article to me was the fact that a Scottish sports journalist was Rector of the University of Glasgow in 1975.

Referring back to one of the prime motivations of the RTC blog – I.e. the pitiful standard of sports journalism in the Scottish MSM – I honestly find it astonishing that the reputation of sports journalism in Scotland has sunk so low in the intervening years.

Can anyone seriously consider the Scottish Press Awards Sports News Journalist of the Year 2012 – Keith Jackson – being elected Rector of anything?

The Scottish MSM – in the main – has failed dismally to learn anything in the last year in particular wrt to the reporting of TRFC.

Regurgitating press releases, printing quotes without any questions asked, ignoring what the fans want asked of the authorities…nothing changes.

As we have witnessed the circulation of Scottish newspapers continues to plummet.

The poor sports journalism is probably only accelerating the inevitable.

Their time has passed: which Internet Bampot will be Rector in future? 😉

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iceman63Posted on6:24 am - Jan 14, 2013

Brth is in a very real sense correct here. Clubs should be more engaged and be central players in their communities. I lived for many years in a small Fife village where up to 70 kids would spend Friday evenings at thr local cricket club beibg coached as their parents socialised around the bar and on fine evenings across the field. That was a club.
The problem is that Football unlike both cricket and rugby does not at the professional level ooperate with a club system. The clubs are often owned by outsiders with their own agenda and the governing bodies fail to support the nurturing of the game and its genuine neighbourhood clubs but instead represent the owners of the clubs against the interests of those who support the clubs. Football club for most of the SPL clubs is a misnomer. These are businesses with customers rather than clubs with members. It is that distinction which is at the root of all of the ills which the present debacle highlights. Had Rangers been constituted as a club it would not have died nor would the authorities have felt compelled to bend and break their rules to accompany them. Gretna would not have had their crazed days in the sun and death.

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stuartcosgrovePosted on8:32 am - Jan 14, 2013

Great post BRTH. I believe we are only at the beginnings of the approach to fan-ship that you describe. A volunteering register for all clubs and a national register of skills that clubs can draw on would be innovative. Many fans would give up time to help clubs – even rivals. Areas such as eg web design, digital media etc are now increasingly done by fans, college students etc. As a kid I joined the squad that helped clear snow from the Old Muirton Park during winter months, our numbers swelled by a chain gang of prisoners from Perth Prison. Mucking in to clear the pitch brought me closer to the club and gave a vested interest in games going ahead. Too much effort is spent on pontificating about ” revenue maximisation ” rather than controlling costs with the buy-in and support of fans. We recently played Brechin in a cup game and sleet threatened the game. It eventually went ahead after the Brechin directors helped drain the pitch. Supporting a team is a bout more than shouting the odds and rubbishing other clubs.

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ecobhoyPosted on8:42 am - Jan 14, 2013

Jim McInally encourages supporters to sue if league revamp gets green light


McInally raises a lot of interesting questions for which answers are required.

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neepheidPosted on9:29 am - Jan 14, 2013

ecobhoy says:
Monday, January 14, 2013 at 08:42
0 0 Rate This
Jim McInally encourages supporters to sue if league revamp gets green light
The idea that the fans could sue the SFA is a complete non-starter in my view. From a legal point of view, the fans are simply paying customers of the clubs. As such, they have no grounds on which to sue. Just because something is wrong, or stupid, or you don’t like it, doesn’t give you access to the courts in this country. It is the clubs who, as members of the SFA, might have a basis for legal action. However having joined the SFA voluntarily, and having thus agreed to accept whatever governance arrangements are in place, individual clubs would find it difficult to challenge any new arrangements which had achieved the necessary majority of clubs in support.

I do agree with McInally that any reconstruction should provide the clubs with at least one full season’s notice. That way everyone knows what they are playing for at the start of the season. In fact I do not understand this rush to reconstruction. Why now? Surely it would be far more sensible to reorganise the ruling bodies first, get rid of the conflicted and compromised leadership as part of that, and move on from there, hopefully with people we can trust at the top.

Until then, I will remain deeply suspicious of the motives behind any rushed reconstruction. That suspicion is, of course, a direct consequence of last summer’s events. There has been a complete loss of trust in the governing bodies. Having presided over that loss of trust, Regan, Doncaster, Longmuir and Ogilvie need to go, and go soon, because until they are gone, that trust will never be rebuilt.

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leftydjorkovicPosted on9:32 am - Jan 14, 2013

Senior @01.23am Most of us on here are wringing our hands and hoping our big sister will come and sort it out for us but friends it aint going to happen. Unless we mobilise all our courage and energy we are lost. Thank you, Senior. I tried to post same sentiment last week but was blocked by mods.Must try to be more eloquent and less direct.

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jockybhoyPosted on9:35 am - Jan 14, 2013

I am a Celtic fan who lives in London (for 1/4 century now) my buddy and I used have season tix and came up for games but for our own family reasons gave them up this year. Have I rescinded my membership of Celtic’s fanbase?

I actually dropped Peter Lawwell a note explaining our decision and noting that it had nothing to do with any other team’s existence or league, in fact we applauded Celtic’s stance on that situation, and we undertook to spend as much with the club as our season tix cost. We got a note signed by Lawwell saying he understood our situation and he appreciated the effort we were making. My mate’s kids all got full kits for Christmas (and he gave we the black hoops) and we’re off up to Glasgow for the “matchday” hospitality and the Hearts game courtesy of my presents from my missus 🙂

The point I am making, much as Humble Pie wrote, is that Celtic and of course other teams have a significant revenue source – tapped or untapped – from the Scottish disapora. I don’t think its as much as 500m or whatever Chuckie was banging on about, but it is a pool of revenue. And TV money, whilst poor now, was significantly higher under the ill-fated Setanta deal, and there’s not reason it can’t be that again. One might even argue it will be even easier to grow the TV pie than to significantly alter the attendances if there is real competition for content (eg BT entering the makert).

The idea of one season ticket holder one vote will keep Scottish football as a parochial backwater (btw BRTH I know that’s not what you said). Let’s look bigger picture.

In other news: re. the suggestion that Jabba could be a rector – I think the last two letters are wrong…

And McInally suggesting that supporters could sue the various governing bodies – two things strike me 1) these mare membership organisations so the teams themselves will need to stump up the cash and 2) there seems to be some self interest in his position on this, with Peterhead vying for playoff sports, but what is his problem per se? That there will be no need for playoffs? Perhaps. Perhaps the clubs can ask for a balloon (as opposed to parachute) payment if playoffs don’t take place, but either way his side will not win the league, but will end up playing the same teams either way. He also says this is an SPL driven change but Longmuir has been pretty effusive in his praise of this new structure and has been involved every step of the way…

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blantyreexilePosted on10:11 am - Jan 14, 2013

The paying customer guff has got me for some time now.

On Saturday afternoon me and my eldest went to our local Vue Cinema and saw the latest Hobbit film. The truth is, had the local Odeon been nearer, I would have went there. Vue was handier to go too. I was a paying customer to that particular cinema chain, for that particular film. I enjoyed it, the cinema was comfortable, the film was good. However I hold no emotional tie for either Vue or the Hobbit. It was a pleasent Saturday afternoon with my eldest daughter. If I never visit that cinema again, or see the Hobbit again, I could deal with that.

I could go on Sauturday afternoon as the football team I support was on a mid-winter break, I would have been following them. There is a totaly different emotional tie between being a paying customer with your local cinema chain, and the club that you have followed, the club that has taken you to the highest highs, to the lowest lows, that you have travelled across the world with, that have wept with that you have made lifelong friends with. I am more than just a paying customer when it comes to my club.

As regards the reconstruction, you know, I actually have some sympathy with sevco. At least in regards reconstruction taking place next season, and is something neepheid picks up on in the post above. At the start of the each season every club should know what they are playing for, they should know what they can expect at the end of each season. If winning a league means promotion at the start of the season, it should mean promotion at the end of the season also. If it means relegation, then it should be relegation. That doesn’t mean reconstruction does not go ahead, but clubs should be aware of any change before the start of any season, not halfway through it.

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TaysiderPosted on10:25 am - Jan 14, 2013

Great post BRTH. I share many of your reservations about the proposed league reconstruction. However for this Diddy club supporter (to me a badge of honour as acceptable as being labelled a bampot!) comes a different perspective which is why the allocation of funds is an important issue.

Scottish Football has suffered for years from being viewed as a Rangers / Celtic paradigm. For a Diddy fan it has been hilarious to hear concerns expressed by media pundits about how the SPL will be a meaningless contest this season because it will be a one horse race. How clearly this articulated a mindset incapable of being able to empathise with the perspective of the fan of another club for whom this season involves the excitement of a chance to compete for second instead of third.

Maybe us Diddies, by and large, accept our lot in life is to appear as bit part players, extras in a great play centered on two characters, roles given fleeting greater substance by a rare appearance in the odd cup final, even winning it before returning to our humble supporting role? However I suspect that in many a Diddy’s beating heart there is a dream, a dream that one day our team may prove to be more than just a bit player, that the possibility of another club winning the SPL as a notion has not been consigned to the history books by a brutal era where finances dictate impossible odds for success. To put it another way, if it was announced that never again could any club except two win the SPL (or whatever the top tier will be called) what impact would it have on support at the other clubs?

How the allocation ends up will speak volumes about whether Scottish Football is truly being looked at from a holistic viewpoint embracing the many or whether it is stuck in a mindset that sees everything through a two coloured prism. Campbell Ogilvy has been rightly criticised on here for leading the SFA at a time of unprecedented assistance by the authorities for one club but when comments by the Chairman of the Scottish Football Authority can also be interpreted (headline in today’s Record) as hinting that he wouldn’t stand in the way of a move by Celtic and Rangers down South, really what hope is there?

There is a model, regardless of League structure, that could invigorate Scottish football. It is one focused on youth development where a number of clubs have sufficient resources to run a programme that will see improving home grown talent coming through, playing exciting football. If that led to them being bought by wealthy clubs down South, resources would come in to further strengthen our game. A degree of fairer resource allocation would strengthen competition, a key way to increase spectator interest in the League. If we can’t get that right now, then when will we ever manage to do so?

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billyj1Posted on10:35 am - Jan 14, 2013

Excellent post BRTH.
However until we mobilise to remove Ogilvie, Longmuir etc nothing much is going to change. They are involved in a PR exercise to show themselves as the face of modernisation and the future of Scottish football. They must be got rid off and quickly.

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bawsmanPosted on10:45 am - Jan 14, 2013

BRTH, Top class input from you as usual. I’d binned my season book until this season, this season I have bought 2 after the Scottish football fans stood up to the corrupt attempts to shoehorn Sevco into the highest league possible.

I feel that we should pick our battleground, and/or target, I have my own favourite……….Sky, for a few reasons.

The act of shifting matches to early Saturday/Sunday kick offs has a massive effect on Scottish fans compared to the English leagues.

Anyone who has passed through the Drumochter Pass in mid winter deserves a medal, yet we ask football fans to do this dangerous journey regularly, on some occasions only to arrive and find the game has been called off. Any Health & Safety risk assessment would insist on at least a 3 o clock kick off to allow proper decisions on travel/match proceeding.

Who stipulated that a 3 o clock match cannot be transmitted live? Why can we not have everyone playing at 3 on a Saturday (or 3 on a Sunday if the club so chooses) and one match shown live.
I’m sure that would be a huge carrot for BT or an SPL TV company.

Early kick offs destroy the match experience for me, football is a ritual which should never have been tampered with.

Money talks, I do not like the idea of boycotting any games. Look at the potential powderkeg Green has manufactured. There have been threats from Rangers fans who demanded a boycott against other Rangers fans who want to support their team, not to mention the possibility of neutrals and Dundee Utd fans who will buy up the extras Rangers will not use.

I have a Sky sports package that I would gladly bin stating when asked that, as a Scottish football fan, I am fed up not being listened to by either the ruling body or Sky.

TU if you have a Sky sports package and would join me in binning it.

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jimlarkinPosted on11:33 am - Jan 14, 2013

allyjambo says:

Monday, January 14, 2013 at 09:41
angus1983 says:

Monday, January 14, 2013 at 08:52

enoughx2 says:
Sunday, January 13, 2013 at 23:26

Lets see what our old chums Duff n Duffer have to say, its a large document but no real need to read anything after the line under “Dear Sir”

As said before … this is just a definition, telling the reader that, within the document, “the Club” and “the Company” are to be understood as meeaning “Rangers Football Club plc”.

I understand what you’re saying, Angus, but it is ‘defining’, that in this document, part of the legal process of the administration of Rangers Football Club plc, ‘the club’ and ‘the company’ are one and the same thing. If they’d meant anything else then, surely, they would have left it at defining ‘the company’ as meaning ‘Rangers Football Club plc’ with no reference to ‘the club’ necessary. Can anyone come up with any legal documentation that says, or even suggests it might be the case, that ‘the club’ and ‘the company’ are separate?


just a repost incase BRTH and SC missed it…

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ratethisthenyabampotsPosted on11:37 am - Jan 14, 2013

Albert Einstein on league reconstruction.

“We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.”

“Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.”

“Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius — and a lot of courage — to move in the opposite direction.”

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ecobhoyPosted on11:43 am - Jan 14, 2013



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wottpiPosted on12:01 pm - Jan 14, 2013

“Equally though, if you have a Football Club Board who do nothing whatsoever to attract people into the club apart from throw out a team on a Saturday Afternoon with mixed degrees of success – are they worthy of support from the “paying customer” or anyone else for that matter?

In my view the answer is no— a very loud —NO!!!”

Maybe I am missing the point but is one of the aims of the redistibution of the wealth to other teams lower down the leagues not to help them with the finances they need to improve the product and help attract people to their games.

While BRTH may want to see more effort from the bit part players I am sure there is many a chairman of a smaller club (if not all of them) who is using all available cash to put out a team on the park and keep their club in existence. At present the creche and improvement to the ladies toilets will be well down on their priority list.

To use well worn questions in the style of Mr McCoist – Who are these people? Who is not trying hard enough?

I am sure there is always room fro improvement but a lot of things just need that wee bit of extra cash to get an innitiative off the ground.

The reality is that apart from a odd stint at the front on his violin Jimmy Lea did very little to attract people the ‘Slade’ brand. While he may well have been the creative force behind the band it was Noddy’s voice that caught the ear. The pumping beat of ‘bit part’ drummer Don Powell who drove the tunes along and the anticts of ‘bit part’ lead guitarist that helped get people through the doors at concerts.
Lea could have stayed by the fireplace an no one would have noticed.

As Hill once said to Lea. “You write ’em Jim, I’ll sell em!”.

Powell and Hill may not have been as creative as Lea and Holder but they were more than able gatemen, social converos, fund raisers and programme sellers. The very type of volunteers BRTH is calling for. Therefore their contribution should not be so easily dismissed.

On the other hand, one could argue that all Lea did was to sit in the background knocking out the odd good tune from time to time and taking the lion’s share of the cash while keeping a low profile and not getting involved publicly in anything too controversial for fear of rocking the boat.

Naw, for me the bit part players are doing more than their fair share to support Scottish Football, my guess is that it is the most financially secure clubs (and who might they be!!) in the Jimmy Lea role, who are more interested in protecting their own position. Until we change what goes on at the top in relation to the powerful clubs and the ruling authorities then all the rest is meaning less.

Distribution of finances (with conditions on how the cash is used, if necessary) is the first step.

Second would be to use some of the redistributed cash and bung the local Police commander a few bob to redirect coaches on the outskirts of many a town back towards their local stadium.

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NawlitePosted on12:08 pm - Jan 14, 2013

Thanks BRTH for another well written, well thought out post. I am concerned that I might be one of those who might almost be denied a voice given that I don’t really support a team. I grew up always playing football on a Saturday, so never got into the habit of following a team though I loved football. Because I was around Glasgow, I was lumped in with the supporters of one club due to the school I attended (and, I admit, peer pressure from school probably made me favour that team a bit, though my family had no interest in football). As I grew older, I came to hate the bile disguised as banter in the dressing room (and other places) which meant that one side refused to be happy for their friends’ side doing well. My job later moved me round the country, so I popped along to whatever side I was near and, like me, my son grew up not really supporting anyone. He even liked Crystal Palace for a while when Andy Johnston had a good season!!.

The reason I am (reasonably) active on here is that I like football, but not enough these days to go that often. What I am really interested in is fairness. Ever since the day as a teenager when I saw my manager take an hour off to go and get his hair cut when he wouldn’t dream of allowing any of us customer-facing plebs to do likewise, the one thing that really irks me is people taking advantage. Later, when I managed a Head Office support team, my staff hated that mine was the one HO department not allowed to close for the afternoon of the Christmas lunch. That was on the basis that our network colleagues couldn’t so why should we? That makes me sound like a pain – and perhaps I am – but that hankering for fairness is what keeps me here. I hope you don’t need to be a ST holder to have a say on the issues of fairness (or otherwise) affecting Scottish football.

On another issue – Re the Tom English piece on the SFA confirming ‘same club’ to the ECA, this makes no sense whatsoever as their statement conflicts with how they have treated RFC* officially. If the SFA saw them officially as the same club, they wouldn’t have played in the early rounds of the Scottish Cup this year…indeed, they would still be in the SPL if they were the same club as – even with the Administration points deduction – they still finished 2nd in last year’s table. Why does Tom English not challenge them on this?

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paulsatimPosted on1:15 pm - Jan 14, 2013

StevieBC says:
Monday, January 14, 2013 at 05:14

Can anyone seriously consider the Scottish Press Awards Sports News Journalist of the Year 2012 – Keith Jackson – being elected Rector of anything?

Well he does put the Rec in Daily Rectum!!

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chancer67Posted on1:39 pm - Jan 14, 2013

Charlie been on the communion wine again, he has promised the berz plenty in his speech at the Quary bar yesterday.

He is buying a house in Glasgow so he is going nowhere, He is starting Radio Rangers, wonder who will be running that, when they are in the CL he hopes to have increased the capacity by 10,000,they are in talks to take U 19’s from Real Madrid and Barcelona and play them in the first team with a view to selling them for a profit
New shirt sponsor next week, lucrative friendlies and on and on.He also doesn’t miss Celtic and the SFA saying that the guy from Celtic runs the SFA and Reagan etc are all puppets, all in all a good day out for Charlie and the berz, wonder if he bought a round.

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liveinhopPosted on2:01 pm - Jan 14, 2013

100 percent behind you bawsman lets stop talking and get some kind of protest organised PLEASE

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bawsmanPosted on2:10 pm - Jan 14, 2013

liveinhop says:
Monday, January 14, 2013 at 14:01
0 0 i
Rate This
100 percent behind you bawsman lets stop talking and get some kind of protest organised PLEASE

Really pleasantly surprised by the TU count already. If even 50% of that number were willing to phone in and cancel their Sky Sports prescription that would be getting someone’s attention.


We need to shout rather than cough quietly, is this a good way to attract attention? If so, what do we do to mobilise for maximum effect?

An agreed statement? (Auldheid’s?).

Can we co-ordinate ALL clubs fans through web-sites, tweets, FB etc.

Basically, it’s an idea that has potential……..but needs co-ordinating.

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schottie59Posted on2:11 pm - Jan 14, 2013

“Sometimes all I need is the air that I BRTH”…..watch your jANUS…you could be expanding the rect** of the SFA.!

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AllyJamboPosted on2:15 pm - Jan 14, 2013

chancer67 says:

Monday, January 14, 2013 at 13:39

So Charlie thinks both Barca and Real Madrid would send their young players to the same team. Regardless of the fact there’s a lot better teams, with great coaches, that would love to have the cream of these clubs’ young talent to ‘bring on’, I doubt very much that either of these clubs would dream of sending them to the same club, nor entertain anybody who might think it a good idea. Mind you, Charlie’s given the berz a good pointer to what awaits them in the future, the same kind of business plan that ‘diddy’ teams all over Europe, and in Scotland, have been dreaming of for years. I’m sure Rangers used to be the kind of team that farmed out youngsters to ‘diddy’ teams, oh how the mighty have fallen!

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paradisebhoyPosted on2:15 pm - Jan 14, 2013

I saw Slade perform live in 1971 at The Mount Vernon Hotel ( formerly The Golden Gates) . Their first single had just entered the Hit Parade and they were big news . The hotel had obviously pre-booked them as the old Golden Gates was , well 3rd Division really . They performed quite well but I much preferred the local resident band – Glasgow’s own legendary Jamie Barnes .
The Slade analogy works on another level too – maybe we should be cultivating our own Jamies and leaving the Noddys in England .

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jimlarkinPosted on2:23 pm - Jan 14, 2013

are bucks fizz then and bucks fizz now – one and the same…was the history bought and sold.

if so, we should be told

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jimlarkinPosted on2:32 pm - Jan 14, 2013


i’m guessing that this is a faster – fast-track to get sevco into the top scottish league for the very first time in their very own – unpurchased history !

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angus1983Posted on2:36 pm - Jan 14, 2013

jimlarkin says:
Monday, January 14, 2013 at 11:33


allyjambo: I understand what you’re saying, Angus, but it is ‘defining’, that in this document, part of the legal process of the administration of Rangers Football Club plc, ‘the club’ and ‘the company’ are one and the same thing. If they’d meant anything else then, surely, they would have left it at defining ‘the company’ as meaning ‘Rangers Football Club plc’ with no reference to ‘the club’ necessary. Can anyone come up with any legal documentation that says, or even suggests it might be the case, that ‘the club’ and ‘the company’ are separate?

Good points, Ally, and certainly adds weight to the Club=Company side of the debate when you put it like that. I imagine lawyers could have fun debating the point just on the strength of that letter!

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David McCloyPosted on2:38 pm - Jan 14, 2013

The best song I remember by Slade was Smooth Operator.

… no, wait, that was Sade.

I’ll just get me coat.

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AuldheidPosted on2:41 pm - Jan 14, 2013

bawsman says:

Monday, January 14, 2013 at 14:10

“An agreed statement? (Auldheid’s?)”

This has not been forgotten and work is still ongoing. In fact here is something for others to do.

Some clubs do not have a recognised Trust or Association (or at least do nothave details linked to Supporters Direct.) If anyone knows a contact who could speak for their supporters at the following clubs can they provide an e mail to TSFM using the contact facility?

Hamilton (which is reported as in abeyance)

East Fife
Albion Rovers

Queens Park
Annan Athletic


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blantyreexilePosted on2:45 pm - Jan 14, 2013

jimlarkin, not if my dodgy arithmetic is correct, they would still be playing in the third tier. Maybe it is more to do with when this new structure comes into place and it starts not this summer, but next. However I still don’t see how that would get them into the top tier any quicker. This hurts my head too much!!

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nowoldandgrumpyPosted on2:45 pm - Jan 14, 2013

jimlarkin says:
Monday, January 14, 2013 at 14:32
1 0 Rate This

i’m guessing that this is a faster – fast-track to get sevco into the top scottish league for the very first time in their very own – unpurchased history !
If it was introduced next season, then no doubt they would place Sevco in the second group of 14 which would speed up their progression, If season 2014-2015 then again I would expect them to be put into the second group of 14, which would not in that case speed anything up.

However 14-14-14 was what traynor was spouting about last year.

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AuldheidPosted on2:47 pm - Jan 14, 2013


can they provide an e mail address at which they can be contacted to TSFM

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jimlarkinPosted on3:28 pm - Jan 14, 2013

blantyreexile says:

Monday, January 14, 2013 at 14:45

not if my dodgy arithmetic is correct, they would still be playing in the third tier. Maybe it is more to do with when this new structure comes into place and it starts not this summer, but next. However I still don’t see how that would get them into the top tier any quicker. This hurts my head too much!!


yes, but we don’t know what is in the detail.
will seating be in sevco’s criteria, will undersoil heating be in sevco’s criteria, will three years accounts be left out of the sevco criteria ???

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ExiledCeltPosted on3:39 pm - Jan 14, 2013

This is the way to deal with attention seekers!!! Nice one Lenny!!!


Published on Monday 14 January 2013 11:08

CELTIC manager Neil Lennon has imposed a ban on answering questions about Rangers after being asked to respond to fresh comments from Ibrox chief executive Charles Green.

• Neil Lennon will no longer answer questions on Rangers unless they face each other in competition

• Lennon had been asked to respond on comments made by Rangers chief Charles Green on league reconstruction

Lennon has grown more and more exasperated at having to field queries at press conferences on the Parkhead club’s historic rivals, and remarks made by Green regarding reconstruction of the Scottish game has proven to be the final straw.

Green had criticised proposals to reform the league structure of the domestic game while citing remarks made by Celtic chief Peter Lawell regarding changes overseas.

Green had also claimed that Celtic would suffer financially as a result of Rangers’ absence from the SPL, adding that season-ticket sales would slump.

When Lennon was asked to comment on Green’s latest remarks, and expressed puzzlement at the relevance to his club’s day-to-day fortunes in the SPL.

“Rangers are in the Third Division, we are in the SPL, and it’s not really our problem,” said Lennon.

“We are six months down the line from Rangers playing in the Third Division and six months down the line, I am still answering questions on them.

“To tell you the truth, I don’t want to answer any more questions no them because I have enough on my plate.

“From here on in I am not going to answer any more questions on Rangers because they are not on our radar.

“If we play them in a cup competition then I will be quite happy to answer any questions on the football aspect of things.

“As regards all this stuff off the field, I have no comment to make whatsoever.”

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NawlitePosted on3:45 pm - Jan 14, 2013

So Yorkie is now proposing 14-14-14. Do the sands at RFC* change so quickly and do none of the head guys there talk to each other? Why do so many contradictory statements come out from them so quickly? First McCoist wants 16-10-16, then Yorkie is prepared to leave if 12-12-18 goes ahead. Now while he is still presumably planning to leave he makes a new (old) proposal! Why doesn’t someone ask why he is still interested if he is planning to go? Oh, that’s right – there’s nowhere for him to go, so he now backtracks and gets away with spouting nonsense the other day. GAWD!!!

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broganrogantrevinoandhoganPosted on4:00 pm - Jan 14, 2013

Good Afternoon All.

Can I just point out that I was never really a Slade Fan — they were a bit too formulaic and daft populist for me —- but as I have grown older and been known to murder many a tune on a poorly played guitar at times I have come to appreciate a couple of songs. Everyday and Far Far Away I think are better than most others that I know.


I am definitely not having a go here at smaller clubs or their fans, but what I am trying to say is that the guys at the top of the tree in Scottish Football ( whether that be at club level or at the executive level of the national authorities ) are absolutely mesmerised by TV revenue, corporate sponsorship and all the commercial stuff that is within the domain of what might be described as “football business”!

The smaller clubs can ask/demand/plead for/negotiate a greater share of either communal revenue or indeed even some of the revenue of the bigger clubs for all they want but I think that they are potentially missing other revenue streams which are available to them— which revenue streams are not necessarily available to those bigger clubs.

Whilst it might be argued that Celtic, for example, have less revenue this season from season ticket sales or SPL gate receipts ( I think this was aknowledged by Peter Lawell at the Celtic AGM ) their crowd to capacity ratios are far healthier than many smaller clubs simply beause of the size of their support — especially their regular attending support.

Whereas, smaller clubs clearly do have a sizeable latent support whose attendance at numerous home games would far outstrip any increased benefits from a Television deal — both financially and in terms of increasing the commercial potential of the club on all fronts— not to mention the good old fashioned boost that a full ground gives to players.

When you ask for names of those who are not trying hard enough– well I am sorry but I think you are missing the point.

There are some who I believe are brainwashed into believing that mere existence is to be regarded as a suitable achievable goal each season. Indeed I know of one club– and I will definitely not name names—- where I am told that the Directors do not want promotion from their current league status because they take the view that any such promotion would mean a demand for a better playing staff, with greater wages, a more professional management at board level and so the cosy corner approach of the board and the individual members of the board would change— in their eyes for the worse– as it would ruin the “wee local club” type atmosphere at board level!

Now, that approach is absolutely acceptable– almost admirable even— but something to be very wary of if others in the league do have a bit more ambition, a bit more drive and some initiatives which would give them just a bit more money and so improve the competetive edge.

The club concerned could find themselves going backwards which brings its own pressures on the Directors. Besides, I am not too sure that such an approach– if openly expressed— would meet with the approval of the club’s fans who presumably would love to see some progression?

Now, I know someone who supports another club who went along to this club’s ground a few weeks ago just to take in a match. As I say he is a supporter of another club who play in a division higher— yet he came back raving about his day out at the football!!! He saw a great game in pouring rain, enjoyed a great atmosphere, some great crack with the local fans and I can guarantee you that he will not only go again but his persuasive descriptions will undoubtedly lead to others going along at some point in the future when their own team is not playing or whatever.

I also know of others who go to corporate days out at this club as well and you get the same story– a really enjoyable day out– but with the added twist that it is not hidden that the club would not want to get too big or be too sucessful in the eyes of the Directors.

Therein lies the problem. That club has the ability to increase its fan base, get more people in the door, increase revenue in a way that is nothing to do with TV revenue or what any other club does– but there are those who are afraid of success and increased success because they are afraid of losing what they have already— either on a personal or corporate basis– or both!

Yet if the fans — the people who enjoy the experience of being involved– were to go along and —as Stuart Cosgrove points out above— contribute to the web site, or sell the programmes or work behind the bar or whatever– then more money could be spent on the team and the kit etc AND such further and closer involvement would attract greater numbers by sheer dint of being involved at that level. It might not be a dramatic rise but an improvement nonetheless that would grow fruit the more the word spreads.

Such progression– such advancement of the “club” model is not so readily available at Celtic Park, Ibrox, Old Trafford or the Emirates because these giant monoliths cannot connect quite so easily with fan potential and fan involvement in the actual day to day running of the club.

What I am saying is that there is an interest in Scottish Football that cannot be measured by merely counting the attendances at each ground on a Saturday. The Hampden experience shows that teams other than the big teams have a sizeable following which is dormant for most of the year and I find that really annoying—- not for me personally because as a Celtic fan I am normally part of a large crowd— but because there are lots of really good football people in Scotland who are tryng their hardest to make their club better in every way and yet it is only every now and then that they get full support from their own fans!

That, to me, is treating someone and their hard work like a “diddy” and, personally speaking, I think they deserve better than that– and it also deprives the stay away fans of the joy of going along and being part of the club and the support itself on a regular basis!

As you say, Jimmy Lea may well have plucked a violin or two, been slightly aloof on base and knocked up a few good tunes—- only for Dave Hill to don his ever bigger platforms and shiney jackets when selling the same tunes.

The thing is Dave Hill turned up at every gig and every rehearsal as part of the club— he didn’t just come out for the big gigs and the TV shows!!!!

Although it is alleged that at times he didn’t actually play on the records —– with the allegation going further that Jimmy played Dave’s part on guitar.

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ratethisthenyabampotsPosted on4:06 pm - Jan 14, 2013

If I were a betting man I’d have a tenner on Morton being that club BRTH.

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broganrogantrevinoandhoganPosted on4:19 pm - Jan 14, 2013

Have a look at this?


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bailemeanachPosted on4:28 pm - Jan 14, 2013

My local club is Chester FC. The former club Chester City were wound up about 3 years ago. A local businessman got the ball rolling to create a phoenix club, and acquired financial backing and sponsorship. This is a great success story. the club is owned and run by the fans, including a large number of volunteers to look after security, catering, bar, progammes etc.
Chester FC had to start life from the lowest tier of football, and have gained promotion each year, currently topping the league.
I have started to take my kids along (Everton fans but that’s a pricy day out). Attendances are fantastic at this level of football, with so many big clubs around the north west area to compete with.
The club send players around the local primary schools. offering free tickets for kids with a paying adult. They bring the kids on at half time to take penalties against the club mascot. It’s a great family day out at very affordable prices.
Team shirt bears the legend “Ou city, our community, our club”

I think this maybe embodies a wee bit of where BRTH is coming from

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smartie1947Posted on4:29 pm - Jan 14, 2013

After a fairly woozy Xmas/New Year, I regret I have lost track of a few essential dates.
Can someone remind me when the cut-off date was for HMRC to submit an appeal against the FTT decision and any word on whether this has happened yet?

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fara1968Posted on4:30 pm - Jan 14, 2013

Thanks for the post BRTH. Ironically the guys from slade as forward thinking men wrote the song in the summertime. Giving them 6 months to get the single ready for Christmas, just about the same amount of time that it takes to reconstruct the whole of Scottish football.
Back in 1974 when the song was wrote, apart from touring the media route to whether a song was successful or not was radio. Getting picked for air play by the radio stations was fundamental in having a hit record. Today radio is still very important for selling music but bands today have many other ways to promote themselves. Bands will have their own websites, Facebook accounts, and YouTube channels. Become a bit more successful and your new tune you will be promoted all over iTunes with free samples to listen to, replacing the old record shop booths that the older bloggers will remember.
Today mass media is everywhere. We are using it to convey our thoughts on this site. And we are all mere semi-illiterate bampots. Times have changed and supporters of the larger footballing clubs in Scotland must feel further apart from their club than ever with the corporate way that their clubs are run. And this comes at a time when communicating with each other on a mass scale has never been easier. If clubs really wanted to know the opinion of the fans there has never been an easier time to do so.
Jim Spence, (Dundee uni Rector anyone?), suggested on air recently that fans should be represented at board level in all clubs. A great idea and if the fans representative was up to date with the real fans views through media outlets similar to this one even better.
MSM dinosaurs dismiss new media at every turn. That is because they are afraid of it. It threatens their very existence. Today we have pundits on the radio telling us what we think even when they are told the opposite. They cannot handle their soapbox being shared with the people who once bought their papers.
The days of fans clearing snow off pitches may be drawing to an end but that doesn’t mean we should not be a cooperative member of our clubs. There has never been a better time for it to happen.

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valentinesclownPosted on4:40 pm - Jan 14, 2013


Thanks for the link to Arthur Montford article.
Excellent piece, made me feel so humble and also highlighted the difference we can all make if we just make that liitle effort. The rewards speak for themselves.

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SouthernExilePosted on5:00 pm - Jan 14, 2013

I’m not sure why some people are fretting about the potential to fast-track newco into the top division on the back of league reconstruction. It doesn’t seem possible under the current transnational governance structure.

A uefa club licensing regime is in place across Europe. To obtain a uefa licence, a club must have been a member of its national association for at least three years (and to have submitted annual financial accounts during this period).

A uefa licence is required to take part in uefa competitions AND to take part in the top tier of the relevant national league structure.

Newco will therefore just about scrape through to be eligible to play in the SPL or it’s successor in season 2015/16 having achieved three years membership of the sfa in August 2015 i.e. in the same time they will get there at best on sporting merit under either the current or the proposed new structure.

Can’t happen any faster.

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StevieBCPosted on5:14 pm - Jan 14, 2013

The fans are the most UNimportant people in Scottish football.

To tweak a well known phrase, the link below to Scunner Ogilvie’s latest warblings sums up precisely how things have not – and will not change.

The MSM failing to ask the one question most fans want asked of Ogilvie:
“Why are you still at the SFA, demeaning the Office of SFA President ?”

Ogilvie – and the SFA – continue to ignore the fans’ concerns wrt lack of trust of senior post holders.
And to rub the fans’ noses in it – these same people are planning for the future of Scottish football !

If the fans are the most important people in Scottish football then it is a no-brainer: no reconstruction talks until AFTER there has been a clearout of those who have lost the trust of the fans.

…just don’t hold your breath though…


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AllyJamboPosted on5:27 pm - Jan 14, 2013

angus1983 says:

Monday, January 14, 2013 at 14:36

It amazes me the way this has been allowed to drag on. No one from the Ibrox side has ever put forward even a bad argument when they claim it’s the same club, let alone anything with any legal weight. It just seems to me that Charlie says it’s the same club, and what Charlie says is always factual, or the truth, or nearly the truth, or maybe he made a mistake… but he’s saying what they want to hear so it must be right. If anyone at the SFA thought that it was definitely the same club they would come out and state it quite catagorically, but they don’t, and that can only be because they can’t! I’d love for this to be tested in a court of law, or by the CAS, but you can be damned sure that’s one thing Green will try to avoid ever being raised in any setting that will provide a definitive answer. I think it will only be catagorically settled if the dual contracts tribunal finds against Rangers and hands out sanctions so severe to the ‘club’ that they test Green’s will to continue to claim ‘they are the same old club’!

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layman00Posted on5:34 pm - Jan 14, 2013

Can I have a reminder of the official slogan for the removal of CO, is it “Campbell we’re Scunnered”?


I’m still hoping that Mr Cosgrove can persuade him to appear for some witty banter on Off The Ball. I was thinking Mr Cowan could organise input from the audience with details their most expensive night out or an EBT Eleven suggestions.

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FinlochPosted on5:44 pm - Jan 14, 2013


I don’t think we can criticise clubs for not wanting to move up, because in reality that means they don’t want to move down either.
Most of them have the real life scars of being higher at some time and managing the inevitable and stressful decline when times are less good.
It is a systemic failure in our current set up that while the rise is good when the statistically inevitable fall comes it is not a pleasant time for anyone.
(I know from a pal up north that when ICT were relegated a few years ago it resulted in redundancy for something like 25% of their staff immediately and that kind of thing hurts any business and any community).
I’d say gambling to get promoted and then business free-fall when fortunes change is not good for any business.
In our current leagues where there is so much churn (way too much in my opinion) we currently have only about 6 Premier League Mainstay clubs and maybe about 6 with no ambition at the other end.
The 30 or so remainder yo yo clubs are clinging on and managing all the uncertainties.
None of the new plans will fix that problem.
So they will just occur and occur and occur like Groundhog Day.

I’m old enough to remember the old first and second divisions.
It wasn’t perfect.
Two clubs up and two down and no pyramidical removal of the bottom club.
But you know something – it was maybe a better environment in which to run a business and to blood youngsters too.
And it coincided with Scotland producing better players too and doing better in Europe and having more youngsters starring in England.

I totally concur that all clubs should be community based.
And as part of their community youth and women’s football should be a priority.

And other good stuff too – football clubs can be such a power for good in things like positive health. The kind of thing that the guys at Spartans who are not even in the leagues are doing in their community.
And its all there to be replicated right across the country for the benefit of all.

I’m also for central funds making their way to all members to fund specific projects and initiatives.
So youth programmes should get ring-fenced budgets for this.
And a youth and community programme should be be prioritised as a necessary element of membership.
And audited to mitigate the problem of new money simply getting creatively accounted and or frittered away on wage inflation.

I’d also use the planned change to allow new pretenders into the leagues.
And not just the current best teams.
I’d factor in community and communities rather than just simply current champions.

Teams like Spartans and Gala and Cove and Linlithgow and anywhere there is a community big enough to become a worthwhile member at the lower end.
Its not rocket science and should be mostly population driven.

So say we immediately have 6 or 8 worthy aspirants. On day one of our new structure we’d have say 48 clubs to fit into leagues.
And 48 community programmes.

And BRTH some of these may never want to leave the bottom division but they still have a crucial role to play in the macro regeneration of our game because they will be training and coaching youngsters in a nationally coordinated (and funded) programme.
And they will have community coaches working their schools and working to make kids healthier too.

And I don’t get the too many clubs nonsense.
This is about communities and all the good that football can bring.

So if this means 2 top leagues of 18 playing each other twice and 1 of 12 playing each other 4 times then so be it.

And I’m all for a pyramid but after the new set up is launched I’d suggest that it might not kick in for an initial period of say 5 years to allow some stability.

So I’m not up for some “Plus Ca Change” bollocks spouting from our current crop of (mal) administrators.

But I am up for real change and think the debate should be opened before the decisions are made because there may only be one chance.

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bad capt madmanPosted on5:53 pm - Jan 14, 2013

..and till no MSM agency asks CG why Rapid Vienna say they haven’t paid, when CG has said all football debts have been paid.

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AuldheidPosted on6:27 pm - Jan 14, 2013

fara1968 says:

Monday, January 14, 2013 at 16:30

If we were to change the terminology then perhaps the thinking constrained by current terminology would change with it.

Instead of being “supporters” of our club we should instead be “members” with different levels of membership at different prices to reflect the different circumstances of those who support their clubs.

Celtic explored this membership concept and a two way communication strata was part of the thinking but circumstances stopped it developing fully. However one outcome was the Overseas Season Book for supporters outside of the UK.


Being overseas Celtic supporters get to watch ALL the games for what I think is a low price of around £3.70 a game if they subscribe to Celtic TV. At about £7.90 a game under the OSB this allows them attendance at 4 games when/if at home and allows their seat to be used by another supporter who cannot afford a ticket.

Now live viewing cannot be offered to UK residents so this particular initiative cannot be offered to them but something at a lower price could be and if that thinking could be extended to cover all SPL clubs then overall membership could be increased because it is not limited to supporters who attend live matches.

You cannot solve a problem with the thinking that created it so we have to go out of the box and start thinking differently. Another example of old think is not just a clubs reliance on SB sales but the reliance on receiving the money in tranches over a limited period. Why not spread it over a full year with a member committing to an annual contract to which he is bound (unless exceptional circumstances occur)?

This makes the cost of supporting more affordable by spreading it over 12 months and if clubs need some up front money at a seasons start that is where the like of Ticketus come in to smooth the process on the basis of membership income due.

Football is stuck in the last century because the thinking remains there.

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TSFMPosted on6:34 pm - Jan 14, 2013

Fan participation at board level is a very high minded and worthy principle, but there are also reasons why it may be impracticable.

At a large club, there may be security and confidentiality concerns over plans which involve spending millions of pounds. Football fans are not too good at keeping things which involve their clubs to themselves (ask Willie Haughey about that).

At any club, there may be a benign dictatorship in place where an individual or family have been benefactors for some time. Their modus operandi may not be the most transparent, but it may well have been the very reason that the club survives and consequently their beneficence may depend on keeping total control .

The model that I believe Charlie Green is following is the one put in place by Fergus McCann at Celtic in the 90s where he created the football board (known as “the wee board”) as the football-only doppelgänger to the plc high-and-mightiness. The reason it was created was not to invite the participation of fans, but to reward,,with some status, the efforts of others.

Willie Haughey and Michael McDonald were part of that structure to reward Haughey’s and Gerald Weisfeld’s assistance in smoothing the wheels for Fergus’s takeover. John Keane, a great ally of McCann was similarly rewarded.

Perhaps that kind of model might have some room for fan participation, but there still one other drawback. Football fans are notoriously (and deliberately) ignorant of the stark realities of football economics. A fan representative on the board has the potential to either be the voice of unrealistic fan expectation – or branded a turncoat by the fans, many of whom would assume they could do the job better. It would require a very talented individual to pull it off.

I think that the model offered by BRTH in this blog is a far more realistic and ultimately more powerful one for the fans. TV and sponsorship money has made fans increasingly less important to clubs all over the country. Withdrawal of attendance at matches is less of a sanction than it may have been thirty years ago, but if the clubs truly became integrated with their communities, the bond between club and fans, cemented by increasing interdependence may result in the fans being more influential stakeholders than they are at present.

BRTH asked “what do you do to support your club?”, but before that question can be properly answered, I think we need to ask “what do you support your club to do?”.

I think we need to ask the question of what we want our clubs to actually be. The lesson we should all have learned from the Rangers disaster is we shouldn’t want our clubs to be something they are not. High minded notions of playing elsewhere in search of greater glories only fulfil half the god Janus’s function. The head that looks to the past, that looks to the roots of football, deeply buried in our communities, appears at times to be cut off.

It is no surprise that Rangers failed because they looked only in one direction and in search of glory and riches. It is also no surprise that the appeal to its roots (although it may have been handled better) has allowed Charles Green to turn what appeared to be a financial train-wreck into a potential success.

Maybe we need to ask ourselves if acquisitiveness and success is the only criteria by which we judge our clubs. And don’t be so sure that the answer to that is no, because over the past twenty years, that culture has become ingrained in fan psyche. However ask yourself this;

If the clubs were as deeply embedded in their communities as they used to be, would the game of Twister played out by the authorities, where they contorted themselves like pipe-cleaners in an effort to maximise revenues ever have happened?

My guess is no, but then again, had the clubs been so embedded in their communities (think Rangers, think Gretna, think Livingston) would this blog or its predecessor ever have existed?

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wottpiPosted on6:41 pm - Jan 14, 2013

Brogan Rogan Trevino and Hogan says:
Monday, January 14, 2013 at 16:00


Thanks for your reply.

The problem for football is the same as any business these days.
Constant growth is often the mantra.

However we all know wee shops, restaurants and businesses that have done ‘quite nicely thank you’ by doing what they do well.

The owners don’t want to be M&S, Tesco or Microsoft.
Their customers use the shop or the business because they are not M&S etc etc.

At time it can be a perilours existence but more often than not they outlast those peers who forged ahead and bit of more than they could chew.

Noddy and Jimmy aren’t pulling in the millions like Jagger and Richards but at the same time they haven’t been found dead in a bath tub either.

While you talk about directors and the like fearing or avoiding promotion then I am sure there are fans at some clubs who may also fear what they might loose by playing in a higher league.

The occassional cup draw against a big team is all fine and dandy but getting your backside tanned week after week is no fun.

A cup final or semi is like going to a Michelin 5 star job for a special birthday tea but it isn’t something the family wants or can afford to do week in week out.

I think it was discussed on the radio at the weekend, that some folks are saving up and go to watch a EPL game or even further a field and making a weekend of it. They clearly see that as being more appealling than parting with there hard earned cash to watch a local product week in week out.

Growth in football tends to involve moving up through the leagues. However once you get the the higher leagues then for a smaller club the revenue stream outwith that provided by a small support is critical.

Mr Cosgrove has many a time waxed lyrical about how the rise of Gretna was unsustainable.
It can therefore be argued that clubs are therefore naturally limited in their ambitions by their fan catchment area for if a TV deal or philanthropist owner goes down the tubes that is the core money you have to rely on.

That being said, I agree that there is more that could be done to get people through the gates at all clubs.

For me part of the problem is that opposed to small clubs having glory hunters who only turn out for big games, we have too many glory hunters heading to Rangers and Celtic week after week from all parts of Scotland (or sitting at home watching their games on TV) and the other clubs are left fighting for the remainder of fans who are spread thinly across the country.

Therefore what are smaller clubs to do to attract more fans when everyone and their uncle is getting it drummed into them that growth = success and the achieve success you must have growth.

In todays business model / philosophy football fans in Fife, for example, are never going to see ‘success’ while resources, local talent and fans are spread across four senior teams.

The obvious answer for Edinburgh, Dundee, Fife and Ayrshire would be to have mergers and put forward a real challenge to Celtic. However as we know from Wallace Mercer’s stab at it, that ain’t going to happen anytime soon as most fans won’t but it even when they see ICT sitting ahead of them second on the SPL.

Therefore what are we left with?

Clubs could do more to promote the ‘community’ and social aspects of club and the likes but it would have to be openly explained that winning promotion and playing with the big boys was not necessarily the main aim of the club. You come to enjoy the standard of football that is sustainable and accept that it may be an up and down existence. Doesn’t sound overly attractive but at least it is the truth. If people don’t buy into it then we get the set up and clubs we deserve.

While many a smaller club chairman may have feared what their fans thought of their tenure as teams like Gretna, Livingston and Dundee shot ahead of them, they probably also gave a huge sigh of relief when they saw them slipping down below the waves.

Yes clubs could do more but there has to be a point where people acknowledge their limitations.

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angus1983Posted on6:52 pm - Jan 14, 2013

Brogan Rogan Trevino and Hogan says:
Monday, January 14, 2013 at 16:00

(Slade songs) Everyday and Far Far Away I think are better than most others that I know.


Interesting fact – “Far Far Away” was recorded using Jimi Hendrix’s Gibson J200 guitar.

Speaking as a bass player myself … Merry Xmas Everybody, over-cooked as it is nowadays, has one of the world’s most fantastic basslines. Absolute genius from Jim Lea. You can’t fail to enjoy playing it. (Other unsung basslines include just about anything by Abba … and this coming from me, a confirmed rocker. Gasp.)

Sorry. Back to fitba. 🙂

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timalloy67Posted on7:06 pm - Jan 14, 2013

We all know that Sky and ESPN have been poor in promoting our Scottish game. (most SPL games on Sky 4) With all the reconstruction talk, we should also address the tv revenues.
Some time ago an SPL channel was mooted. There was also talk of BT trying to get into sports broadcasting.
Recently we have seen Rangers tv (I know Sevco) show games.
Celtic also has it’s own channel, but needs to be more professional.
Surely, a panel should be looking at what revenues we are currently getting, if we can better them, and if not look at setting up our own pay per view tv channel for SPL/SFL
properly cost it all out, broadcast costs, equipment, commentators, engineers etc..

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AuldheidPosted on7:19 pm - Jan 14, 2013

timalloy67 says:

Monday, January 14, 2013 at 19:06

A couple of years back the idea of SPL was explored but I have no idea of the outcome.

If nothing else it would serve as a benchmark when negotiating with Sky and I would hope that the benefits of more friendly kick off times would be factored in..

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AuldheidPosted on7:20 pm - Jan 14, 2013

Correction I meant “SPL TV”

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AuldheidPosted on7:26 pm - Jan 14, 2013

timalloy67 says:

Monday, January 14, 2013 at 19:06

I forgot :). Here is a model I prepared earlier that uses Celtic TV as the delivery medium.

At the prices and audience figures used it does not match the Sky deal but the value of a spreadsheet is you can see what you have to aim for to make it work.


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chancer67Posted on7:29 pm - Jan 14, 2013


Ally, i posted a couple of weeks back about the time Southampton went into admin,The owner/chairman i think his name was Rupert Lowe tried to argue with the FA that it was the holding company and not the club that was in administration and therefore Southampton the club should not face any sanctions.

After a hearing the FA lawyers concluded that the holding company and the club are the same entity and slapped a 15 point deduction on Southampton.

Surely if the SFA are looking for a precedent then they need look no further than Southampton.

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jonnyodPosted on7:49 pm - Jan 14, 2013

Unfortunately that is not the sort or precedent the SFA are looking for ,now if the FA had said they were not the same that might be a different ball game

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jonnyodPosted on7:53 pm - Jan 14, 2013

Have all Scottish football clubs not called in the liquidators yet ,if not ,why not ?
What have the got to lose except all their debts .

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Humble PiePosted on7:57 pm - Jan 14, 2013

I’d much prefer it if the SFA were looking for a president rather than a precedent.

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bailemeanachPosted on7:59 pm - Jan 14, 2013

I’d much prefer it if the SFA were looking for a president rather than a precedent.

Quote of the year so far Humble!

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neepheidPosted on8:12 pm - Jan 14, 2013

chancer67 says:
Monday, January 14, 2013 at 19:29

After a hearing the FA lawyers concluded that the holding company and the club are the same entity and slapped a 15 point deduction on Southampton.

Surely if the SFA are looking for a precedent then they need look no further than Southampton.
Sorry, but it wasn’t quite like that. Southampton FC was run by a limited company, Southampton Football Club Ltd. That company was a wholly owned subsidiary of Southampton Leisure Holdings PLC. Southampton Leisure Holdings PLC went into administration, but Southampton Football Club Ltd carried on trading, and paid all its bills, so far as I am aware. What the Football League decided was that the financial affairs of the PLC and the company owning the football club were so closely linked that Southampton FC would have to suffer a 10 point deduction, even although the company directly owning it had not gone into administration.

I really don’t see how the Southampton case throws any light at all on whether a football club is the same entity as the company that runs it. The Southampton case had nothing to do with that issue, and so isn’t a precedent. In my opinion, of course.

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liveinhopPosted on8:17 pm - Jan 14, 2013

“The Rangers Football Club plc is a United Kingdom-based company. The Company is engaged in the operation of a professional football club. The Company has launched its own Internet television station, RANGERSTV.tv. The channel also develops day to day programming for the Club’s portfolio of multi-media channels. The Company’s business operations include football business, ticketing, hospitality, media, sponsorship and retail. Its subsidiaries include Rangers Youth Development Ltd, which is engaged in youth development and Rangers.co.uk Ltd, which is engaged in media. Its ultimate holding company is Murray International Holdings Ltd. ”

Oh dear – the Chuckie Green fanboys are not going to like this.

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SeniorPosted on8:29 pm - Jan 14, 2013

Ok BRTH I have giving the post the courtesy it deserves.

The post, while full of the highest aspirations, and couched in flowery terms misses the point IMO.
I am mindful there are understated, if not indeed hidden messages peppered throughout the article,but at the end of the day it does not address directly the elephant (should I say snakes) in the room. Unless corruption is addressed directly we may talk all day of the worthy ideas you eloquently describe but the reality is they will never get off the ground. If the plague that is corruption is not faced up to and dealt with for once and for all we are going nowhere.
I thank you for the effort, time and research you obviously put into your always interesting articles. Please keep up the good work.

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liveinhopPosted on8:29 pm - Jan 14, 2013


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justshateredPosted on8:30 pm - Jan 14, 2013

Surely if they are the same club why were they not docked points for still being in administration at the start of the season.
If they are not the same club then it follows they are a new club with no history.
This all hinges on the super duper 5 way agreement that has never been made public. I would suggest that within that document the SFA have agreed never to comment on this issue.

I’m sure one of our tremendous, award winning, talented journalists will find time in their busy schedules to ask this question of either Chas Green or Stu Regan.

Silly me I guess its down to the ‘bampots’ again then.

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bawsmanPosted on8:40 pm - Jan 14, 2013

Really pleased about all the TU I got for my post earlier about binning Sky as a protest, I must have struck some kind of a chord.

Rather than get all complicated and stuff I have decided to bin my Sky sports package in protest at the SFA/SPL/SFL/SKY not listening to us, the games lifeblood.

I’ll be binning Sky on Valentine’s Day – that’s February 14th for the unromantic ;-).

I would really be chuffed if a number of us did this on or around the same time.

I’d be chuffed to the gutties if this grew legs and spread throughout the games fanbase in Scotland, we have been used and abused long enough by the incompetents and corrupt.

Yours in fitba’


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borussiabeefburgPosted on8:42 pm - Jan 14, 2013

I must be a bit simple, certainly not as clever as Green, and I’m probably not good with numbers.

But the Ibrox 14-14-14 plan: wouldn’t it leave Green’s tribute act in the bottom league, as they would be in the bottom 14 clubs at the end of this season?

Think about the nuRangers fans! They’ve had to visit all these we grounds “And now they might get asked to do the same thing! In my opinion, it can’t be right. It’s a slap in the face for us. Once I’ve stopped laughing, I’d need to have a serious think what to do.”

Why are they slapping their own face?

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bailemeanachPosted on8:45 pm - Jan 14, 2013

justshatered says:
Monday, January 14, 2013 at 20:30

Said “journalists” appear to be bound by the freedom of mis-information act. otherwise I’m sure they would be happy to oblige, asking all those awkward questions. If it wasn’t for that damned red tape….

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justshateredPosted on8:57 pm - Jan 14, 2013

bailemeanach says:
Monday, January 14, 2013 at 20:45

I’m also surprised that one of the ‘bampots’ have not managed to get a final copy of the 5 way agreement. I wonder if RTC could use one of his sources.

It must be locked in the bunker with Ogilvie. Both currupt, conflicted and incompetent.

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nowoldandgrumpyPosted on9:01 pm - Jan 14, 2013

From Twitter lan

Gregory Ioannidis ‏@LawTop20
@colin_ban88 have already done so several times! New company is different to OldCo. New club may carry history but not under NewCo!
Expand Reply Retweet Favorite

1h Colin MacDonald ‏@colin_ban88
@LawTop20 just for final clarification ur effectively saying its a new club and because its also a new company it cannot carry the history?

1h Andrew Dempsey ‏@Dempsey1888
@colin_ban88 @lawtop20 would appreciate your view on this as surprisingly (NOT!!) the msm in Scotland haven’t asked a single sports lawyer

59m Gregory Ioannidis ‏@LawTop20
@Dempsey1888 @colin_ban88 will write something next week, as I am busy with a case at the moment

54m Andrew Dempsey ‏@Dempsey1888
@LawTop20 @colin_ban88 thank you very much. Will be most appreciated. However, in short newco can’t claim clubs history??

50m Gregory Ioannidis ‏@LawTop20
@Dempsey1888 no as it is a new entity. Only club can but without the new corporate entity.
Retweeted by Henry Clarson
Hide conversation Reply Retweet Favorite

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timalloy67Posted on9:03 pm - Jan 14, 2013

@Auldheid 14/1/2013 at 19.26…
You clearly have thought about the television revenues.

What we would have to do is compare televsion audiences just now and over last 3 years say for an average. Then see if we can attract fans to the SPL tv in better numbers.
I would imagine numbers on ESPN and SKY would not be that big, average 200,000?
Surely if overseas ex pats included, SPL could beat these figures?
While I hate to praise SKY their coverage is second to none.
I have had the mis pleasure of watching some games on Celtic tv, poor camera angles and even worse commentators, not very professional.
This is where an SPL/SFL must be more professional and good value for money.

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AllyJamboPosted on9:32 pm - Jan 14, 2013

chancer67 says:

Monday, January 14, 2013 at 19:29

I remember your post and very enlightening it was too. I think in other cases from England there was no actual ‘test’ of the matter, things just drifted along and the supporters of the clubs involved were happy to blindly accept it. I made this point to Marching on Together over on Paul MacConville’s blog and he reluctantly accepted that in his club, Leeds United’s case, there was no testing of that, just an acceptance.

That was a great peice of digging up by the way, and the fact that it was an FA decision kinda puts the tin lid on it. As far as the SFA accepting it as a precedent; if pushed, they’d have little option other than to accept it, but who’s going to push them?

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AllyJamboPosted on10:04 pm - Jan 14, 2013

neepheid says:

Monday, January 14, 2013 at 20:12


I’d written my previous post just before I read yours. It’s interesting what you say, and is obviously different to the TRFC/Rangers scenario, but as Southampton appear to have appealled on the grounds that the club was separate from the company, but failled on the grounds that it wasn’t separate from the company, does it really matter that the insolvent company was in fact the holding company and not Southampton FC plc, at least in the matter of ‘is the club separate from the company’? It seems to me, and I don’t know any more about it than I’ve read on here, that there were two things found against Southampton, that the insolvency event of the holding company did in fact effect the ‘company’ and that the ‘company’ and ‘club’ were one and the same. But I don’t have all the facts of the case and I’m not saying you are wrong.

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