Did Stewart Regan Ken Then Wit We Ken Noo?


Did Stewart Regan Ken Then Wit We Ken Noo?


Thoughts and observations from watching and reading a transcript of Alex Thomson of Channel 4’s Interview with Stewart Regan (CEO of the SFA) Broadcast by Channel 4 on 29 March 2012.


Introduction. I came across the above interview recently and listened to and transcribed it again as it reminded me of questions it raised then that the passage of time since has provided some insight into.

There is a lot to digest so the blog is broken into four sections.  Three parts cover the Interview plus what they seem to tell us now, knowing what was not known then viz:

  • Why No independent or independent element to the enquiry that became the Lord Nimmo Smith Commission. given the potential extent of the corruption at play?
  • Why no effective fit and Proper Person scrutiny and the absence of real governance?
  • EBTS and whether they constitute wrong doing and why that mattered so much and still does. plus
  • The “hard to not to believe” conclusions about the whole exercise with the benefit of what we ken noo.

There is also an Annex at the end with excerpts from the Lord Nimmo Smith Decision for ease of reference:

The comments (in bold italics) are based on what Regan said then and what we ken noo, either as facts or questions arising from them. It is a long read but hopefully readers will be enticed by this introduction to stay the course.

In the following “SR” is Stewart Regan CEO of the SFA and “AT” is Alex Thomson of Channel 4 News.

No Independent Enquiry?


AT I’m just curious as to why they wouldn’t. With something as big as this potentially this is the biggest corruption scandal in British sport, which is – a thought – and yet the SPL deem themselves fit to investigate themselves.

SR Well I think you are calling it potentially the biggest corruption case, at this stage there has been no wrongdoing proven.  There is an investigation going on

AT But you would accept that potentially, potentially that if guilty there is no question this is the biggest corruption scandal in British sport.

SR There is no wrongdoing as I said at the moment and there is nothing yet that has been established as far as the club registering players without providing the appropriate documentation, so I think it would   be wrong to jump to conclusions and even use words like corruption. You know there are a series of issues here. There are some footballing matters which are being dealt through the football authorities and there are tax mattes which are being dealt with through HMRC and there is to be a Tax Tribunal due to be heard as I’m sure you are aware in April.

So even before the investigation got underway Mr Regan was saying that it would be incorrect to assume that any wrong doing took place in terms of the registration process and use of ebts. He later expands on this point in relation to EBTs as a legitimate tax arrangement device. Given that the FTT did not rule until November 2012 that the ebts issued under the Murray Management Group Remuneration Trust (MMGRT) were legal then this stance by Mr Regan appears justifiable at the time of interview – but more on that later. 

AT I’m just wondering why at no stage anybody seemed, or perhaps they did, to think we need an independent body coming in this is big this is huge, potentially  we need somebody from the outside  or we are going simply going to be accused of investigating ourselves.

SR Well I think that might be one for you to ask the Scottish Premier League as far as their Board..

AT Well they appeal to you so I’m asking you.

SR   No as you said we are the right of appeal so if the club is concerned with any punishment it has been given well then they can choose to appeal to us. We as a body have the provision in our rules to carry out independent enquiries, indeed we did so very recently by appointing the Right Honourable Lord Nimmo Smith to carry out our own investigation into Rangers and we are part way through disciplinary proceedings and they will be heard on 29 March.

Given that player registrations are ultimately lodged with the SFA where Sandy Bryson has been doing the job for some years, I did wonder why the SFA were not the body taking the lead. They had the expertise on what turned out to be a key issue, the eligibility of players if misregistration occurred.  Indeed Sandy Bryson was called in to give a testimony to Lord Nimmo Smith that most folk involved in running a football team from amateur level upwards (as I was) had difficulty accepting. The Bryson interpretation suggested us amateurs had been daft not to take the risk of being found out if we did not register players correctly if only games from the point of discovery risked having results overturned. The Bryson interpretation on eligibility made no sense against that experience and it still does not to football lovers. I’m not sure if the rules have been amended to reflect the Bryson interpretation yet, but cannot see how they can be without removing a major deterrent that I always thought proper registration was there to provide.

The point about their having to be a body of higher appeal sounded plausible then, but could the Court of Arbitration on Sport not have been that body?  Or did that risk taking matters out of the SFA’s control even though it would have introduced an element of the independence that Alex Thomson raises in the following paragraphs in his interview?

AT But did anybody at any stage at the SFA say to you I have a concern that we need an independent body, that the SPL can’t and shouldn’t handle this?

SR Well under the governance of football the SPL run the competition

AT I’m not asking, I’m saying did anybody come to you at any stage and say that to you. Anybody?

SR No they didn’t as far as the SPL’s processes is concerned. The SPL ,

AT Never?

It is notable here that Alex Thomson pushes the point about lack of independence, which is where we enter “wit we ken noo territory”.  

Given that it is now known that SFA President Campbell Ogilvie sat on the Rangers FC Remunerations Policy Committee in September 1999 where it was decided Discount Option Scheme (DOS) ebts would be used as a matter of club remuneration policy using the Rangers Employee Benefit Trust (REBT).

Given that we know that Campbell Ogilvie instigated the first ebt payment to Craig Moore using the Discount Options Scheme.

Given that Ronald De Boer and Tor Andre Flo had both been paid using the same type of DOS ebt as Moore from 2000 to 2002/03 but accompanied by side letters, later concealed from HMRC  in 2005 and of course the SFA from August 2000.

Given that Mr Ogilvie was also in receipt of the later MMGRT ebts disputed by HMRC in the big tax case on which the FTT had still to rule

Given that Mr Regan must have been aware at time of interview that Sherriff Officers had called at Ibrox in August 2011 to collect payment of a tax bill, which means even to a layman that it must have gone past dispute to acceptance of liability and so crystallised sometime after 31st March 2011.

Given that Craig Whyte had already agreed to pay the wee tax bill in his public Takeover statement in early June 2011.

Given that on 7th December 2011 Regan had written to Andrew Dickson at RFC, who had sat on three of the four SFA/UEFA Licensing Committee meetings in 2011, to approve a draft statement by Mr Regan on the SFA’s handling of the UEFA Licence aspect of the wee tax case, which arose as a direct result of the use of the DOS ebts to Flo and De Boer during Dickson’s ongoing tenure at RFC from 1991.

Given that Campbell Ogilvie accompanied Stewart Regan to meet Craig Whyte at the Hotel De Vin on 15th December 2011 as a result of an invite stemming from that consternation causing draft that RFC thought likely to cause problems for the SFA (having agreed before the hotel meeting that no comment should be made on the wee tax case)

Given that the wee tax case was a direct result of those early types of DOS ebts being judged illegal by an FTT considering an appeal by the Aberdeen Asset Management company in 2010.

Given all of these facts, how credible is it that no conversation took place between Regan and Campbell Ogilvie on the requirement for an independent enquiry?

If a conversation did not take place as claimed, the question has to be should it have?

Given the foregoing facts on the early ebts, how credible is it Mr Regan during this interview did not know as a result of his involvement with the overdue payable and the UEFA licence in 2011 of the illegal and therefore wrong doing nature of those early EBTS with side letters concealed from the SFA and HMRC in 2005 just before Mr Ogilvie left RFC?

SR The SPL run, the SPL run the rules of The Scottish Premier League and they apply that. There are a whole host of people raising issues on internet sites and passing comment s about various theories that they have about Scottish football particularly in the West of Scotland. I think it’s important to establish that governance of Scottish football is managed by the appropriate body whether it is the Premier League, The Football League or the overall governing body. So that as far as we are concerned we let the   Scottish Premier league manage their own rules and if those rules are then broken and the club is charged they have the right of appeal to us as the Appellant body.

Given all of the now known facts listed above how credible is it that the reason given by Stewart Regan to Alex Thomson for the SFA being the appeal body was indeed the only one?

Given the foregoing how credible is it that Mr Regan was not aware that he was being economical with the truth during his interview or had he indeed been kept in the dark by others in the SFA?

Fit and Proper Person and Absence of Governance

AT Let’s talk about Craig Whyte. Ehm   – Presumably when Craig Whyte was mooted as coming in as the new owner – for the grand sum of £1 – for Rangers Football club, presumably the SFA took a keen interest in this and did some kind of due diligence on this man.

SR Well we have under our articles, Article 10.2, we have a process which sets out a number of criteria for what defines a fit and proper person within football. Now as you know we cannot stop people getting involved with a business and we cannot stop people getting involved with a PLC, all we can stop them doing is having an involvement with football, so what we do as part of that process is we ask for a declaration from the Directors of the club that they have a copy of the Articles,, that they have gone through the conditions and criteria within Article 10.2 and they have confirmed to us that they meet those criteria. If subsequently those criteria are breached then of course we take appropriate action.

AT You keep quoting rules back to me that’s not what I’m asking, I’m asking is did the SFA conduct any due diligence on this individual.

SR No we asked for a self-declaration from the Directors of the club and the individual himself.

AT Forgive me that sounds absolutely incredible this is the biggest club in Scotland which has been brought to its knees by a whole range of fiscal mismanagement, it is all on the record and proven. A new man comes in claiming all kinds of things, just like the previous man, and the SFA did not check or do any due diligence whatsoever.

SR That is part of the process of governing football, we

AT That’s, that’s NOT governing football that’s the exact opposite to governing football that’s running away from governing football.

SR No if you let me, if you let me finish my answer the point I am about to make is we govern the entire game from the top of the game down to grass roots. We have changes of Directors we have changes of ownership throughout the course of the year. I’m sure that if we were to spend football’s well earned money on doing investigations into potentially every change of Director, then there would be a lot of unhappy Chairmen out there.

AT You could have easily have googled (?) for free

SR Well we rely on the clubs telling us that the Articles have been complied with and that is the process we undertake.

AT This is extraordinary I say to you again  you have years of fiscal mismanagement at Rangers Football Club, a new man comes in you are telling me that nobody at The SFA as much as got on to Google  to get any background information nobody did anything ? That is extraordinary.

SR Well you refer to alleged years of financial mismanagement. I think it’s important to separate out the previous regime at Rangers and the new owner.

AT Rangers were a mess financially everybody new that

SR But I think it’s important in the case of the point you are raising regarding the fit and proper person test, to separate out the previous regime from the new owner. The club was in the process of being sold, they were challenging a tax bill that had been challenged by HMRC,* and the club had been sold to a new owner. That new owner had come in, he had purchased the club, the paper work for that sale had gone through and the club had complied with our Articles of Association. We run football we don’t, we are not the police we don’t govern transactions, we don’t govern fitness, we run football and we had asked the club to declare whether or not that person was fit to hold a place in association football. They had gone through the articles they’d signed to say that they had read those articles and that there had been no breaches of any of the points set out there. That included whether a Director had been disqualified. That wasn’t disclosed to us, indeed it did not come out until the BBC did their investigation back in October of last year.

(* note that in spite of all the “givens” listed earlier,  Mr Regan fails to distinguish (or appreciate) that there is more than one tax bill at play and the one for the wee tax case was not under challenge or Sherriff Officers would not have called in August 2011 to collect it.)

 AT So the BBC did due diligence on fitness (??) not the SFA?

SR No, as I said it came out in October 2010 primarily as a result of a detailed investigation. We then have to respond to potential breaches of our articles and we did that We entered into dialogue with the solicitor who was acting for Mr Whyte and we were in dialogue until February 2011 (?sic)  of this year when the club entered administration.

AT What I’m simply asking you to admit here is that the SFA failed and it failed Rangers in its hour of need over Craig Whyte and it failed Scottish football.

SR We didn’t fail.

AT You didn’t do anything, you said you didn’t do anything.

SR We complied with the current processes within our articles. That said I think there are a number of learnings and I think the same goes for football right across the globe. People are coming into football into a multimillion pound business and I think football needs to take a harder look at what could be done differently. We are currently exploring the possibility of carrying out due diligence using the outgoing regime to make sure that there is a full and rigorous research being done before the transaction is allowed to go ahead.

AT Do you feel the need to apologise to Rangers fans?

SR I don’t need to apologise because we complied with our articles. I don’t feel there is a need to apologise whatsoever. I think….

AT You need some new articles then don’t you?

SR Well I think the articles

AT Well let’s unpack this. You said there is no need to apologise because we followed the rule books so that’s all right. So you must therefore admit you need a new rule book.

SR No well I think it’s easy at times to try and look around and find a scapegoat and try and point fingers at where blame is to be apportioned. I think perhaps it might be worth looking at the previous regime who for four years when they said they were selling the club, said that they would sell it and act in the best interests of the club. With that in mind I think the previous regime also have to take some responsibility for selling that club and looking after so called shareholders of Rangers football club and those people who that have put money into the club over the years.

AT ??  (Interrupted)

SR the Scottish FA, as I said have a process, that process has been place for some time. It has worked very very well until now I think there are learnings undoubtably and as I said we will review where we can tighten up as I know is happening across the game right now.

The above segment on Craig Whyte and Fit and Proper  Persons is a timely reminder to supporters of all clubs, but particularly of Rangers FC of what happens when those charged with governing Scottish football hide behind the letter of the rules when convenient, rather than apply the true spirit in which those rules were written. It is the approach of The Pharisees to make a wrong , right.

To be fair to the SFA though, I doubt anyone could have imagined the degree of deceit and deception that they had allowed into Scottish football in May 2011 and how useless their rules were as a result, but I am not aware to this day if the SFA have apologised to Scottish football generally and Rangers supporters in particular, not only for failing to protect them from Craig Whyte, but also failing to protect them from the consequences of the foolish financial excesses of Sir David Murray, especially from 2008 when the tax bills in respect of the MMGRT ebts began to arrive at RFC . Some intervention then, assuming something was known by some at the SFA, who also held positions at Rangers, of  those  huge tax demands,  might have cost Rangers three titles from 2009, but what Ranger’s supporter would not give all of that up to protect their club from the fate that the failure of the SFA to govern has caused?

Also to be fair the SFA have changed the rules so that the outgoing regime is responsible for doing due diligence on any new club owners rather than relying on self-certification by the incoming club owner, but we know that did not work particularly well when Rangers Chairman Alistair Johnstone did due diligence on Craig Whyte , but then again Sir David Murray  was under pressure to sell and the guy coming in, everyone was told, had wealth off the radar.

The Nature of EBTS.

AT Let’s look at EBTs. Did nobody question ebts in the Scottish game in the English game come to that simply because nobody thought they were illegal in any way and indeed are not illegal in any way if operated correctly? Is it as simple as that?

SR There is nothing wrong with ebts when used correctly and ebts are a way of providing benefits to employees and if managed in a correct manner are perfectly legitimate. I think that the issue that we know is under investigation at the moment by both HMRC as part of the large tax case and the SPL as part of their own investigation into potential no disclosure of side letters is whether or not there has been any wrong doing and I think the issue at hand is that wrongdoing or potential wrongdoing has been discussed with HMRC for some time for several years in fact so we would not get involved in anything that there is no wrongdoing   taking place and ebts are, as I said, a legitimate way of doing business when used correctly.

Again taking the “givens” into account, particularly the significant event of Sherriff Officers calling to collect unpaid tax in August 2011 and the logical deduction that the SFA President must have known of the difference between the two types of ebts Rangers used, (and perhaps why they were changed) why the insistence at this point that all the ebts used by Rangers had been used correctly? Mr Regan at the time of the interview was either kept in the dark by his President, given he claims to have spoken to no one about the independence of the enquiry, or being economical with the truth.

The whole of Lord Nimmo Smith’s judgement made months after this interview, where Mr Regan stressed again and again there is no wrongdoing in the use of ebts if arranged correctly (or lawfully) is predicated on all ebts with side letters used by Rangers since 23 November 2011 actually being used correctly and in Lord Nimmo Smiths words on being “themselves not irregular”. (Para 5 of Annex 1). It is almost as if Mr Regan knew the outcome before Lord Nimmo Smith.

(In fact the ebt to Tor Andre Flo had a side letter dated 23 November and it related to a tax arrangement that had not been used correctly (using Regan’s own words) The irregular ebt for Ronald De Boer with a side letter of 30 August was placed beyond the scope of the Commission because in spite of it meeting the criteria specified by Harper MacLeod in March 2012 asking to be provided with ALL ebts and side letters and any other related documentation from July 1998 to date (including the HMRC letter of Feb 2011 that fully demonstrated that those particular ebts under  the Rangers Employee Benefit Trust (REBT) were not used correctly) and so were unlawful, NONE  of that documentation was  provided when requested.

This enabled Lord Nimmo Smith to state in para 107 of his Decision “while there is no question of dishonesty, individual or corporate” which is a statement he could not have made had he had all the requested documentation denied to him either by dishonesty or negligence during the preparation of his Commission.

How would he have had to judge one wonders if deception and dishonesty was indeed the factor we now ken that it is?


What exactly were the consequences of the failure to provide Lord Nimmo Smith with the required documentation?

It is stated in the Decision (Annex 1 para 104) that the Inquiry proceeded on the basis that the EBT arrangements (by which it meant the MGMRT ebts) were “lawful”. As it transpired the outcome of the FTT decision announced in November 2012 was that the MGMRT ebts indeed were (although this is still under appeal by HMRC.)

However, because Lord Nimmo Smith treated the MGMRT and the Earlier Trust (REBT) as one and the same, (para 35 of Decision) this meant that the Inquiry failed to distinguish between the two trusts and necessarily treated the Earlier Trust as also being lawful (without however having properly investigated its operation). However, the MGMRT and the earlier REBT were two separate trusts and there was no necessary reason to treat them as one and the same. Had evidence relating to the REBT been produced and examined, the Inquiry could hardly have treated them) as “continuous” or allowed Lord Nimmo Smith to say “we are not aware that they were different trusts“(Annex 1 para 35)

From the Decision (Annex 1 para 40), it would appear that the President of the SFA gave evidence only as to his knowledge of the MGMRT (not the REBT). We know now that the President of the SFA had knowledge of the Earlier Trust (sitting on the RFC remuneration policy committee that agreed to their use in 1999 and indeed was active in its setting up). Why the President failed to volunteer such crucial information is surely something he should now be asked?

By the time of the Inquiry, Rangers FC had already conceded liability in what has become known as “the Wee Tax Case” (which related to the now unlawful REBTs). Having regard to the wording at para 104 of the Decision (that is an echo of what Regan stressed to Alex Thomson about ebts) where it is said that to arrange financial affairs in a manner “within the law” is not a breach of the SFA/SPL Rules) the clear implication, must be that to arrange financial affairs in such a way that they are not lawful, must be a breach of the rules.

Given the admission of liability in the Wee Tax Case, payments made in respect of the REBT could not be “lawful” (to employ the language used in the Decision) or disputed, but Mr Regan presumably did not enquire too much into the history of the wee tax case before agreeing to talk to Alex Thomson.

It will be obvious from the above that the unlawful nature of REBTs had been masked from SPL lawyers and Lord Nimmo Smith as a result of:-

(a) the failure by the Administrators of Rangers FC to provide the documentation required of them;

(b) the failure of the President of the SFA to provide to the Inquiry his own knowledge of, involvement in, and presumably as a result of it, an appreciation of the differences between the two types of ebts and the consequences thereof for the investigation.  

Had the REBT been the sole subject of the Inquiry (rather than in effect not being examined at all) the following must have been different:-

(i)            the President could hardly have failed to give testimony of his knowledge and involvement;

(ii)          the Inquiry could not have held that the use of the REBT ebts was lawful;

(iv)       the “no sporting advantage” decision given in respect of the lawful ebts could not have been applied to unlawful ebts.

The real issue in the case of the unlawful ebts was not one of misregistration (Annex 1 para 104) which in turn justified the no sporting advantage decision in paras 105/106 but of paying players by an unlawful means which “constitutes such a fundamental defect (Annex 1 para 88) that the registration of players paid this way (i.e. unlawfully) must be treated as having been invalid from the outset.

Had the true nature of these early ebts been known to SPL lawyers the Terms of Reference of the Investigation would have to have addressed the wrong doing that Mr Regan was so keen to argue with Alex Thomson had not actually occurred (long before Lord Nimmo Smith agreed with him) or had President Ogilvie made the distinction in his testimony, it would have been impossible for Sandy Bryson’s to advise as he did regarding the effect on eligibility. He would have to have been asked questions about two types of ebts not one. Finally Lord Nimmo Smith could not have treated both as continuous.

Finally, given this incidence of non-disclosure by the Rangers Administrators (an identifiable trait of RFC dealings with authority from August 2000 to date), it is impossible to see how paragraph 107 (wherein it is stated that there is “no question of dishonesty”) can be allowed to remain unchallenged.

Of course the failure to supply the key evidence could just be an oversight given Rangers Administrators were hardly likely to have established of their own volition the importance of the documents to the enquiry and yet, had they been supplied, the enquiry could not have been based on the defence Stewart Regan was at such pains to stress in his interview with Alex Thomson at a time only 3 months after Mr Regan and Campbell Ogilvie had joined Craig Whyte for dinner as a result of an invite prompted by questions on the SFA UEFA Licence handling of the wee tax case , created by the very same unlawful ebts.

AT But as the governing body why did you not say to Rangers “look guys this this smells really bad, this looks bad you look (and you have admitted you have not paid your tax) you know we can’t do this, we have got to be open and above board, it looks bad.

SR Well think you need to look at what is legal and above board. At the time the club, were in dispute with HMRC. There was a tax case ongoing the new owner was in discussion with HMRC. In fact he has made comments and the club have made comments to that effect and because the amount was not crystallised under UEFA guidelines, whilst ever it’s in dispute it’s not classed as overdue.

AT Sometimes

SR So you need to separate out the licensing requirement, which is what the Licensing Committee did, from the tax that was owed to HMRC which is as we know what is still ongoing.

Mr Regan was not being accurate here.  The Big Tax case was in dispute and the bill has not crystallised as a result. However the wee tax case crystallised in mid June 2011 and at 30th June 2011, the UEFA licence checkpoint under Article 66 of UEFA FFP, did not meet the conditions to excuse it as being an overdue payable to HMRC. Quite how the SFA handled the processing of the Article 66 submission from RFC is subject to a resolution asking UEFA to investigate put to the Celtic AGM in November 2013 which is still in progress. As has been mentioned twice before Mr Regan has either been kept in the dark or was being less than honest with Alex Thomson. Interestingly Andrew Dickson who has been at Rangers in various administration and executive capacity since 1991 sat on 3 of the four UEFA Licensing Committee meetings during 2011. He may of course have excused himself from any discussions on this matter as the rules allowed, but was a full explanation why he did so, if indeed he did, offered? Would such an explanation have enlightened Mr Regan of what he was dealing with?

AT Sometimes things can be within the rules but from a PR point of view, indeed from a moral point of view, hate to introduce morality to football but can be the wrong thing to do. You would accept that?

SR Well I think that football around the world is going through a difficult time, clubs are in difficult financial circumstances, not just in Scotland, you look down into England and look at the clubs in Administration at the moment. You know Portsmouth and Port Vale in recent times and I think Plymouth is as well again. As far as that is concerned you know that indicates that clubs are living from hand to mouth and there are deals being done all the time with HMRC, payment plans being agreed. There is huge amounts of debt in football.

AT I’m just inviting you to accept that sometimes things can be within the rules but just look bad because morally, they are bad.

ST I think when taxes aren’t paid ehm VAT in particular, National Insurance Contributions of course that’s bad and I think we accept that and we know that in the current regime there is evidence to suggest that Rangers has not paid its taxes since Mr Whyte took over the club. That’s wrong that is against the spirit of the game and certainly we would look to deal with that and stamp out that type of behaviour which is not acting with integrity.

If Carlsberg did irony!

End of Interview.

The Hard Not to Believe Conclusions

There is always the danger in examining anything of finding what you want to be there rather than what is there and it is a danger any writer has to be aware of, but given the responses from Harper MacLeod on TSFM and the total lack of response from the SPFL and SFA when being informed of the missing evidence along with what has been written here it is hard not to conclude that the Lord Nimmo Smith Inquiry was deliberately set up in such a way as to produce two results

  • The minimising of the wrongful behaviour that had taken place from 1999 to 2012 when The Commission sat
  • The avoidance of the consequences of admitting that serious wrongdoing in the form of illegal payments had been made via irregular EBTs, which consequently made the players involved ineligible from the outset, making the Bryson ruling inapplicable in those cases with the consequences of that ineligibility on trophies and remuneration won.

The reader will find it hard not to conclude that either

  • there was a huge screw up by the SPL lawyers charged to set up the Commission which they might be able to defend
  • or
  • Vital knowledge was concealed within the SFA itself in order to achieve the above two results and
  • This knowledge was deliberately concealed because had it not been The Inquiry could not have come to the conclusion it did on player eligibility, not only because unlawful ebts were used in early instances, but also because the deliberate concealment from HMRC of the side letters to De Boer and Flo, the former also kept from Harper and MacLeod, suggests Rangers knew all along and in 2005 in particular that what they were doing since 2000 was morally wrong and against the spirit of the game. It perhaps also explains why HMRC is determined to push an appeal all the way.
  • This failure to supply all documents meant that the line being taken by Mr Regan in March 2012, when the Commission was being set up into the use of ebts and failure to register them with the SFA, came to fulfilment in the Decision of Lord Nimmo Smith himself, achieving the two aims suggested above.

Given that Harper MacLeod have said they passed on to the SFA in September 2014 the evidence kept from them by Rangers Administrators, has Stewart Regan spoken to either Ogilvie or Dickson since then about keeping him in the dark? Or did he know all along?

Of course these hard to believe conclusions could be discounted as delusional ramblings if either the SFA or SPFL were to say they would investigate the evidence kept from Harper MacLeod. It would also help if only one of the thirteen main stream journalists would look at the hard copy of the concealed documents they were provided with, because until someone who values sporting integrity does, the stench of corruption will hang over Scottish football for years to reek out anytime the Lord Nimmo Smith Commission is used as a justification for anything that it contains.

Annex One – Extracts from Lord Nimmo Smith Decision

[5] Although the payments in this case were not themselves irregular and were not in

breach of SPL or SFA Rules, the scale and extent of the proven contraventions of the disclosure rules require a substantial penalty to be imposed;


Outline of the Scheme


[35] As we have said, a controlling interest in Oldco was held by David Murray through the medium of Murray MHL Limited, part of the Murray Group of companies. Murray Group Management Limited (MGM) provided management services to the companies of the Murray Group. By deed dated 20 April 2001 MGM set up the Murray Group Management Remuneration Trust (the MGMRT). (We note that the MGMRT was preceded by the Rangers Employee Benefit Trust, but we are not aware that they were different trusts. We shall treat them as a continuous trust, which we shall refer to throughout as the MGMRT.)


[40] Mr Ogilvie learnt about the existence of the MGMRT in about 2001 or 2002, because a contribution was made for his benefit. He understood that this was non-contractual. Although as a result he knew about the existence of the MGMRT, he did not know any details of it. He subsequently became aware, while he remained director of Oldco, that contributions were being made to the MGMRT in respect of players. He assumed that these were made in respect of the players’ playing football, which was the primary function for which they were employed and remunerated. He had no involvement in the organisation or management of Oldco’s contributions to the MGMRT, whether for players or otherwise. He said:

“I assumed that all contributions to the Trust were being made legally, and that any relevant football regulations were being complied with. I do not recall contributions to the Trust being discussed in any detail, if at all, at Board meetings. In any event, Board meetings had become less and less frequent by my later years at Rangers.”

He also said: “Nothing to do with the contributions being made to the Trust fell within the scope of my remit at Rangers”.

However it should be noted that Mr Ogilvie was a member of the board of directors who approved the statutory accounts of Oldco which disclosed very substantial payments made under the EBT arrangements.


[88] In our opinion, this was a correct decision by Mr McKenzie. There is every reason why the rules of the SFA and the SPL relating to registration should be construed and applied consistently with each other. Mr Bryson’s evidence about the position of the SFA in this regard was clear. In our view, the Rules of the SPL, which admit of a construction consistent with those of the SFA, should be given that construction. All parties’ concerned – clubs, players and footballing authorities – should be able to proceed on the faith of an official register. This means that a player’s registration should generally be treated as standing unless and until revoked. There may be extreme cases in which there is such a fundamental defect that the registration of a player must be treated as having been invalid from the outset. But in the kind of situation that we are dealing with here we are satisfied that the registration of the Specified Players with the SPL was valid from the outset, and accordingly that they were eligible to play in official matches. There was therefore no breach of SPL Rule D1.11.


[104] As we have already explained, in our view the purpose of the Rules applicable to Issues 1 to 3 is to promote the sporting integrity of the game. These rules are not designed as any form of financial regulation of football, analogous to the UEFA Financial Fair Play Regulations. Thus it is not the purpose of the Rules to regulate how one football club may seek to gain financial and sporting advantage over others. Obviously, a successful club is able to generate more income from gate money, sponsorship, advertising, sale of branded goods and so on, and is consequently able to offer greater financial rewards to its manager and players, in the hope of even more success. Nor is it a breach of SPL or SFA Rules for a club to arrange its affairs – within the law – so as to minimise its tax liabilities. The Tax Tribunal has held (subject to appeal) that Oldco was acting within the law in setting up and operating the EBT scheme. The SPL presented no argument to challenge the decision of the majority of the Tax Tribunal and Mr McKenzie stated expressly that for all purposes of this Commission’s Inquiry and Determination the SPL accepted that decision as it stood, without regard to any possible appeal by HMRC. Accordingly we proceed on the basis that the EBT arrangements were lawful. What we are concerned with is the fact that the side-letters issued to the Specified Players, in the course of the operation of the EBT scheme, were not disclosed to the SPL and the SFA as required by their respective Rules.

[105] It seems appropriate in the first place to consider whether such breach by non-disclosure conferred any competitive advantage on Rangers FC. Given that we have held that Rangers FC did not breach Rule D1.11 by playing ineligible players, it did not secure any direct competitive advantage in that respect. If the breach of the rules by non-disclosure of the side-letters conferred any competitive advantage, that could only have been an indirect one. Although it is clear to us from Mr Odam’s evidence that Oldco’s failure to disclose the side-letters to the SPL and the SFA was at least partly motivated by a wish not to risk prejudicing the tax advantages of the EBT scheme, we are unable to reach the conclusion that this led to any competitive advantage. There was no evidence before us as to whether any other members of the SPL used similar EBT schemes, or the effect of their doing so. Moreover, we have received no evidence from which we could possibly say that Oldco could not or would not have entered into the EBT arrangements with players if it had been required to comply with the requirement to disclose the arrangements as part of the players’ full financial entitlement or as giving rise to payment to players. It is entirely possible that the EBT arrangements could have been disclosed to the SPL and SFA without prejudicing the argument – accepted by the majority of the Tax Tribunal at paragraph 232 of their decision – that such arrangements, resulting in loans made to the players, did not give rise to payments absolutely or unreservedly held for or to the order of the individual players. On that basis, the EBT arrangements could have been disclosed as contractual arrangements giving rise to a facility for the player to receive loans, and there would have been no breach of the disclosure rules.

[106] We therefore proceed on the basis that the breach of the rules relating to disclosure did not give rise to any sporting advantage, direct or indirect. We do not therefore propose to consider those sanctions which are of a sporting nature.

[107] We nevertheless take a serious view of a breach of rules intended to promote sporting integrity. Greater financial transparency serves to prevent financial irregularities. There is insufficient evidence before us to enable us to draw any conclusion as to exactly how the senior management of Oldco came to the conclusion that the EBT arrangements did not require to be disclosed to the SPL or the SFA. In our view, the apparent assumption both that the side-letter arrangements were entirely discretionary, and that they did not form part of any player’s contractual entitlement, was seriously misconceived. Over the years, the EBT payments disclosed in Oldco’s accounts were very substantial; at their height, during the year to 30 June 2006, they amounted to more than £9 million, against £16.7 million being that year’s figure for wages and salaries. There is no evidence that the Board of Directors of Oldco took any steps to obtain proper external legal or accountancy advice to the Board as to the risks inherent in agreeing to pay players through the EBT arrangements without disclosure to the football authorities. The directors of Oldco must bear a heavy responsibility for this. While there is no question of dishonesty, individual or corporate, we nevertheless take the view that the nondisclosure must be regarded as deliberate, in the sense that a decision was taken that the side letters need not be or should not be disclosed. No steps were taken to check, even on a hypothetical basis, the validity of that assumption with the SPL or the SFA. The evidence of Mr Odam (cited at paragraph [43] above) clearly indicates a view amongst the management of Oldco that it might have been detrimental to the desired tax treatment of the payments being made by Oldco to have disclosed the existence of the side-letters to the football authorities.

Auldheid  Feb 2015

About the author

Auldheid author

Celtic fan from Glasgow living mostly in Spain. A contributor to several websites, discussion groups and blogs, and a member of the Resolution 12 Celtic shareholders' group. Committed to sporting integrity, good governance, and the idea that football is interdependent. We all need each other in the game.

5,190 Comments so far

Hartsons CombPosted on9:50 pm - Mar 17, 2015

Not everyone at Ibrox is in the doldrums tonight.

“I guess the positive is that after two games in charge, Stuart McCall remains undefeated.” –Tom Miller, RangersTV commentator

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SmugasPosted on10:27 pm - Mar 17, 2015

Don’t know if anyone just heard the last ten minutes of sportsound there. Let’s just say “zey vill all be getting put on ze Liszt!”

Bbc noticeably sans Young or English getting brave all of a sudden?

Only criticism would be (him again) Richard Wilson who was espousing the pluses and minuses of them not getting promoted. Apparently the minus was “they wouldn’t make so much money “(I think was his words, apologies to him if not, but his inference was certainly clear).

Make money Richard? Make money? Starting from where on the scale exactly?

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essexbeancounterPosted on10:30 pm - Mar 17, 2015

scapaflow says:
March 17, 2015 at 8:45 pm
neepheid says:
March 17, 2015 at 7:30 pm

It’s probable that Mr King is rediscovering, (assuming that ICAS teaches it, (CIMA used to)), the old Change Management proverb:

Assumption is the Mother of all Feck Ups.
Scapa…I must have missed that evening’s lecture…I must have been in the Griffin…again! 😳 😳 😳

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bfbpuzzledPosted on10:36 pm - Mar 17, 2015

Should ‘rangersitis’ not be allergy to Rangers? If I recall correctly it was a Charles Green invention, perhaps people misunderstood what he meant by it. Love of Rangers might be Rangersophilia, reminiscent of haemophilia, I will not go on to make the obvious but tasteless joke..

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neepheidPosted on10:57 pm - Mar 17, 2015

parttimearab says:
March 17, 2015 at 8:11 pm

Don’t think delisting makes much difference wrt getting money in.

Any ‘investor’ at this stage is likely to be motivated by emotion rather than gain and as far as the fans go I’m sure the board would rather they bought season tickets.
The plan 12 months ago was to get the 75% shareholder vote to disapply the pre-exemption rights, then have another share offer open to all. That might even have pulled in £15/20 million back then. Now that’s really a lost cause.

I’m sure the Board would like more ST cash, but realistically, how much can they hope for? An extra 15,000 STs at £300 brings in £4,5 million, which helps, of course, but it just reduces the current losses. The amount of money urgently needed is ten times that, or more. King’s dream team isn’t going to come cheap for starters, unless that wee IT guy is a better scout than I think he is. King says that he wants the wage bill for players to be three or four times the current level. Say £20 million for players wages. It is utter madness, in my opinion.

I simply don’t believe that the income potential of the club can support King’s ideas. His answer to that is to pump in loads of cash (how much and from where?) up front, and have a go at the Champions League group stages. Then the books will balance- maybe. As a business plan, it is just about the craziest I’ve ever seen, and in my time I’ve seen some real lulus. But then maybe King can make it work- he’s much richer than me, allegedly. I just watch and wonder whether the emperor has any clothes. I think we’ll all find out very soon, one way or another.

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scapaflowPosted on11:14 pm - Mar 17, 2015

Ah Essex

“Scapa…I must have missed that evening’s lecture…I must have been in the Griffin…again!”

I think you have just the explained the seemingly never ending parade of members of ICAS, (some members in good standing, others merely alleged :mrgreen: ), who have strode on to the Ibrox stage, only to fall spectacularly, &, hilariously, onto their arses.

I trust you shall mention this lacuna in the ICAS curriculum, to the Great Panjandrums at Haymarket Yards? :mrgreen:

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ParadisebhoyPosted on11:55 pm - Mar 17, 2015

ecobhoy says:

March 17, 2015 at 8:15 pm
“I keep getting the feeling that we are about to have a brand new chapter of financial jiggery-pokery revealed to us mere mortals”

I could always cover up the “jiggery” but always got caught with the “pokery” !

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BorrowaTennerPosted on12:00 am - Mar 18, 2015

Danish Pastry 6:54pm

What price per share?

I understood the Share Price would be whatever a buyer was willing to pay for them!

Providing the sellers were successful in finding buyers with money to spare. Although those bold purchasers in Nov/Dec @ the 20p mark, who sold just as the King arrived @ the 32p level to make a 60% profit are cursing for buying so few!
(No penny corrections, please)

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StevieBCPosted on4:04 am - Mar 18, 2015

So what is the ‘worst case scenario’ ?

TRFC does not get promotion to the SPL in 2015 ?

And the problem is…?

IMO, most non-CFC/TRFC fans understand what has happened in the past – and what the opportunities there are in the future.

Scottish football does not need a discredited, dodgy football club in any of the senior leagues.

Is that not what the average paying punter expects: a level playing field, in all respects ?

The entire TRFC organisation – IMO – has to clearly and publicly explain its values and culture before it can make any meaningful progress in Scottish football.

To state the bleedin’ obvious…

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StevieBCPosted on4:23 am - Mar 18, 2015


To barcabhoy
Have you bought Michelle Mone’s autobiography yet ?!

Funnily enough, my sister in law worked with her at Glasgow Airport as a student flipping burgers, and didn’t like her.

And I was in the same class at school as her ex-husband, who left to become a trainee priest, [I know].

However, she is a master/mistress at positive, self-promotional PR.

Maybe she should be at the SFA… ? 🙂

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BarcabhoyPosted on4:57 am - Mar 18, 2015

Stevie BC,

I generally keep my dislike of Mone and other self promoters off of TSFM ( Murray and King excepted , as thats football relevant) . However since you ask.
I haven’t nor would I spend bad money on anything Mone writes.

In business terms she is utterly hopeless. She is regarded as such by every single serious business contact i have. She compounds hopelessness by low class bragging about her “life”. All of this self promotion failed to save her Lingerie business from being a financial basket case. The Charlie Mulgrew baby incident was low life even by her standards.

Scotland needs role models. What the country doesn’t need is role models like David Murray, Dave King and Michelle Mone.

Even as i write this , i grudge wasting even 2 or 3 minutes on her. She’s a nonentity. Only relevant to the downmarket element the tabloids are appealing to.

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TartanwulverPosted on7:14 am - Mar 18, 2015

bfbpuzzled says:
March 17, 2015 at 10:36 pm
Should ‘rangersitis’ not be allergy to Rangers? If I recall correctly it was a Charles Green invention, perhaps people misunderstood what he meant by it. Love of Rangers might be Rangersophilia…
You’re absolutely right. Appendicitis is a dire diagnosis for the appendix, tonsillitis similarly bad news for the tonsils, so Green’s ‘Rangersitis’ allegory should have had the Rangers supporters and funders rushing to administer some urgent care to prevent the patient’s condition turning critical. Instead of which, nothing was done, which led to dangerously heightened temperatures, and even instances of foaming at the mouth (“Who are these people?”).

Say what you like about Green, he knew what he was about!

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upthehoopsPosted on7:19 am - Mar 18, 2015

I wonder if Derek Llambias opens his eyes first thing every morning and says “where’s your money Mr King, where’s your Nomad?”. Let’s not forget the media lined up to deride him for uttering those very words.

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essexbeancounterPosted on8:17 am - Mar 18, 2015

scapaflow says:
March 17, 2015 at 11:14 pm
Ah Essex

“Scapa…I must have missed that evening’s lecture…I must have been in the Griffin…again!”

I think you have just the explained the seemingly never ending parade of members of ICAS, (some members in good standing, others merely alleged :mrgreen: ), who have strode on to the Ibrox stage, only to fall spectacularly, &, hilariously, onto their arses.

I trust you shall mention this lacuna in the ICAS curriculum, to the Great Panjandrums at Haymarket Yards? :mrgreen:
Scapa…I am afraid I am “persona non grata” with the current incumbent(s)…it would take one of the older guard to understand my comments re “Friday night lectures”…(and Saturday morning ones too!)

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ProhibbyPosted on8:26 am - Mar 18, 2015

Tartanwulver says:
March 18, 2015 at 7:14 am
bfbpuzzled says:
March 17, 2015 at 10:36 pm
Should ‘rangersitis’ not be allergy to Rangers? If I recall correctly it was a Charles Green invention, perhaps people misunderstood what he meant by it. Love of Rangers might be Rangersophilia…
You’re absolutely right. Appendicitis is a dire diagnosis for the appendix, tonsillitis similarly bad news for the tonsils, so Green’s ‘Rangersitis’ allegory should have had the Rangers supporters and funders rushing to administer some urgent care to prevent the patient’s condition turning critical. Instead of which, nothing was done, which led to dangerously heightened temperatures, and even instances of foaming at the mouth (“Who are these people?”).

Say what you like about Green, he knew what he was about!

Hmm? Does that mean the patient needs a gerectomy?

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Danish PastryPosted on8:31 am - Mar 18, 2015

Regarding ‘Rangersitis’, I think a little artistic licence (if you’ve sat the test) is permitted viz a viz medical references 🙂 So I’m sticking with an obsessional-delusional disorder caused by disturbances in the fitba space-time continuum.

Clarifying his use of “I”, Green added: “I am Rangers. I’m running that club, I’m making the decisions and I’m going to protect that club with my life. No one’s ever going to abuse it.

“I’ve started to catch Rangers-itis. What I do see now is an opportunity to finish it and take it back to greatness.

“I won’t leave before Champions League music’s playing at Ibrox. But I’ve already changed my mind once, so it may be I end up changing my mind until we win it (the Champions League).”

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Danish PastryPosted on8:36 am - Mar 18, 2015

PS I got logged out before I could post the link for the above. This anonymous DR piece is an absolute collectors item:


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ProhibbyPosted on8:58 am - Mar 18, 2015

I wonder if there’s a Gersontology Department at that big new hospital down Govan way?

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Flocculent ApoideaPosted on9:01 am - Mar 18, 2015

The “-itis” suffix relates to inflammation. The subject would be puffed up beyond it’s natural size. 🙄

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ecobhoyPosted on9:06 am - Mar 18, 2015

essexbeancounter says:
March 18, 2015 at 8:17 am

Talking about the Griffin and Saturday Morning lectures reminded me of the poor souls incarcerated at Pitt Street of a Saturday morning – before it became StrathPol HQ.

They had signed up for the college before it got yooni status by being incorporated into Strathclyde. But a lot didn’t have the mandatory Lower in a language to get their yooni degree.

So they were dragooned into French classes in Pitt Street every Saturday morning and sat there with burstin heids until it was time to escape to the Griffin for a curer 😆

And no one ever let on to them that they got the credit purely on attendance which was just as well 🙄

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bfbpuzzledPosted on9:32 am - Mar 18, 2015

Credit purely on attendance suggests some kind of cynical disregard for proper tests -surely that kind of thing does not go on in Scotland now.

There is at least one institution where exams are set but neither marked nor the papers read except in cases where plagiarism in essay writing is suspected. The essays are marked extremely diligently but quality assurance demands an exam. (Whenever I hear the phrase quality assurance I reach for my gun as someone nearly said)

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ChristyboyPosted on9:34 am - Mar 18, 2015

Itis = Inflamation of. As in – ” I’ve an awfy dose of walletitis after that IPO Charlie, Cheers mate…”

Oscopy = Have a look of. As in Craigoscopy – ” Yeh, I’ve had a look at the books and,eh,were fine….

Otomy = Incision of. As in Mikeotomy – ” He’s cut us to the bone Dave,we canny move without money leakin all over the place”…

Ectomy = Removal of. As in Bermudectomy – ” There’s no cash here Dave, Were Fecked !!!

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ecobhoyPosted on9:58 am - Mar 18, 2015

neepheid says:
March 17, 2015 at 10:57 pm

I simply don’t believe that the income potential of the club can support King’s ideas. His answer to that is to pump in loads of cash (how much and from where?) up front, and have a go at the Champions League group stages. Then the books will balance – maybe. As a business plan, it is just about the craziest I’ve ever seen, and in my time I’ve seen some real lulus. But then maybe King can make it work- he’s much richer than me, allegedly. I just watch and wonder whether the emperor has any clothes. I think we’ll all find out very soon, one way or another.

More or less the same plan was used by Green and it was very successful in getting the initial Sevco 5088 investors on board. Then there was the £22 million raised at the IPO and oodles of ST money.

I am certain Green was in it strictly for the short-term and I doubt if he ever believed the Bears could be strung along as easily and for so long and gratefully chucking their dosh into Rangers.

I think where Green lost the plot was that he started to believe the CL myth he was spinning and started thinking the gravy train could keep going.

Looking at Green’s business history and especially AIM related he’s tended to be a wandering minstrel who moves on after the audience stop listening to the enchanting music and start to actually hear and understand the words buried beneath.

I thought DK was starting off relatively restrained but perhaps that was just the influence of PM and T3B. Some of his recent comments make me wonder if he’s been out in the South African sun for too long.

He’s back to exhibiting full-blown Rangeritis symptoms and of course is being encouraged with this by the SMSM. This time round I actually do believe they know the score and are simply setting him and Rangers up for an almighty fall which – if they survive it – has the potential to change the direction of the club for ever.

The BIG problem that DK has is no Institutional Investor will invest a penny in the club. That leaves fans and HNW RRM. I doubt the fans can actually put much more in than their current share purchase payments or ST sales. And both of these – for differing reasons – could dry-up very quickly.

That only leaves the RRM each with a million or so to burn. There are a lot more of these than some would imagine. I also believe that lots of verbal pledges were given to ensure that control of the club could be taken back from the Ashley grip.

However since then so much bad PR has engulfed Ibrox I believe that a lot of the ‘pledges’ may never be converted to cash.

I would also think that these individuals on seeing the same old madness that passes for financial planning and governance at Rangers being resurrected will suddenly find other things to spend their spare cash on. Do any of them actually want to inherit the spare blue blazer recently left behind? I really doubt it as they actually have reputations to lose!

So where are we? DK and T3B either have the money or they don’t and they must be looking at a minimum of £30 million IMO to pay-off Ashley, build a new team that can reach Premiership mid table next season, and cover the black-hole as well as meeting running costs. I have left out essential maintenance as that is always the first to be allowed to slip.

Maybe they have the money although I doubt it. Even if they do they end-up in the footballing place Ashley was preparing for them as there isn’t enough for CL Glory.

If I was T3B I would be doing a deal with Ashley and let DK hang in the wind and hopefully take a chunk of his supporters with him. Let them set-up a new club on Glasgow Green and play in orange strips.

That’s not me being funny or even nasty but I believe Rangers can never move forward as the support is too fractured with different goals and for some it’s nothing to do with football.

The sooner they separate and move on then the sooner not only Scottish Football but Scottish society can do likewise.

Of course now that I’ve written this DK will no doubt appear waving wads of folding dosh declaring victory in our time 😆

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ecobhoyPosted on10:28 am - Mar 18, 2015

bfbpuzzled says:
March 18, 2015 at 9:32 am

Credit purely on attendance suggests some kind of cynical disregard for proper tests – surely that kind of thing does not go on in Scotland now.
I’m sure it does btw. But the time I spoke of was a different era some 50 years ago.

My OT remark was meant for another poster who – like myself – attended the same yooni and I’m sure never required to sleep through the Saturday morning French lessons.

The language thing was a mere technicality as the students involved were already enrolled at the College before it got Uni status. In order to leave with a shiny new degree they required a language ‘pass’ not from an outside awarding body but from the college.

Never needing to attend the Saturday sessions I am sure that some work was done and I believe it all culminated with an oral examination 😉

Some students must have been awake though because one graduate ended-up rising to dizzy diplomatic heights on the basis of his language abilities.

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Danish PastryPosted on10:31 am - Mar 18, 2015

Flocculent Apoidea says:
March 18, 2015 at 9:01 am

… The subject would be puffed up beyond it’s natural size. 🙄

11 0 Rate This

That’s Charles Green’s bank account yer describin, well puffed oot! Mind you, having been stung (yet again) by the Wasps, it could also be a condition many supporters find themselves with today :mrgreen:

So many amusing definitions available, it should be in the urban dictionary.

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wottpiPosted on10:52 am - Mar 18, 2015

ecobhoy says:
March 18, 2015 at 9:58 am

While there may be a few more RRM like George Lethams out there, their contribution will need to be a one off. Thye will not have the millions that can be donated every year in the sums that are required.
Even if they do exist as you say their arms have probably shrunk a few inches over the past week or so.

As for the 3 Bears I said at the time of the old Board’s RNS, re what King would bring to the club, that they were given a warning shot across their bow as to who they were getting into bed with. Since then, in response to the Ashley camp they have wrapped themselves fully in King’s duvet. I think there is no way back for them with Ashley.

Just can’t see where the money is going to come from to meet the dream fo competing with Celtic, Zadok etc.

Leeds Utd all over again my opinion but slightly luckier in that the competition in Scotland is such that they will get back to the premiership at some point.

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broganrogantrevinoandhoganPosted on10:55 am - Mar 18, 2015

Good Morning.

I realise that this is off topic and that my comments below might, God forbid, spark a football debate but what the hell!

A number of months ago I was in a pub chatting and having a pint.

In itself that is nothing much to report, but someone I was with started a conversation by asking who the rest of us thought had been the most influential footballer to play the game in the last 50 years — in pure footballing terms and so discounting the feats of players who had gone on to be MP’s, started fashion chains, chairity foundations and so on.

We also ruled out those who had played and went on to manage.

What we discussed was which footballer has had the biggest impact on the game itself as a player?

There were loads of candidates — Bosman, Cruyff, Beckenbaur and so on.

When I went to the bar I stood beside someone from an adjoining table who mentioned that he could not but help overhearing our conversation and he immediately proffered a candidate from left field so to speak.

It was a brief conversation but he made several good points and suggested that I look into his argument further — he promised that it would be reasonably compelling.

The result is a rather long Strandsky tale — over 14,000 words.

It tells the story of a footballer, and yes it does make a reasonable case for suggesting that he just might be the most influential football player of the last several decades.

You are perfectly free to disagree of course but from out of left field i give you The Little King of the Park and the Elastico Fantastico.


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rabtdogPosted on10:58 am - Mar 18, 2015

This is an unashamedly Rangerscentric post; unusual on this website, but hey…

The Championship season ends on Sat 2 May. As it stands, the play-off games would then be…

Sat 9: QoS v Rangers
Wed 13: Rangers v QoS
Sat 16: Rangers v Hibs
Sat 23: Hibs v Rangers
Thu 28: Rangers v St Mirren
Sun 31: St Mirren v Rangers

Rangers look set to finish third in the Championship and have gone through three managers and a great deal of board-level upheaval this season, never mind Mike Ashley’s disruptive largesse, gifting the squad with players from Newcastle United. In order to gain promotion they would have to overcome QoS, Hibs and St Mirren in six games staged over 23 days. I think I would risk a bet on that not happening.

(Hilariously, Hibs could well be in the Scottish Cup final. This has been discussed here before but it’s a copper-plated hoot that they will very likely be involved in a vital play-off tie – Miracle on Mafeking Street notwithstanding – on 28 and 31 May with the Scottish Cup final on 30 May. The authorities won’t ignore that bridge until they come to it however.)

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wottpiPosted on11:23 am - Mar 18, 2015

rabtdog says:
March 18, 2015 at 10:58 am

Seeing that makes me wonder if Stuart McCall’s agent sorted out a fee payment per game.

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wottpiPosted on11:34 am - Mar 18, 2015

Seem like McMurdo has caught a healthy dose of TSFM


Rumours of HMRC not being paid. They wouldn’t be that stupid would they?

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TincksPosted on11:36 am - Mar 18, 2015

A remarkably level headed assessment of the current situation down Ibrox way.


Just how long can the MSM keep ignoring the reality of the position Rangers are in?

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TincksPosted on11:38 am - Mar 18, 2015

Wottpi quicker on the draw there 😀

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tykebhoyPosted on11:52 am - Mar 18, 2015

@Rabtdog noted that you said you would risk a bet on that not happening. If TRFC negotiated the 3rd -4th play-off then its likely they would be playing 2nd finishing Hibs. Sunday will tell whether Hibs can manage the 4 goal margin in the previous TRFC league visit to Leith but Hibs two visits to Ibrox have also resulted in 2 goal victories. So on current averages the aggregate play-off result would be a 6 goal victory to Hibs

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Danish PastryPosted on12:00 pm - Mar 18, 2015

rabtdog says:
March 18, 2015 at 10:58 am

This is an unashamedly Rangerscentric post; unusual on this website, but hey..

Careful now, @rabtdog, you might start a trend 🙂 There was a bit of a heated discussion about this a wee while back.

I suppose fixtures will be re-jigged. What is more annoying is the thought that the Scottish Cup Final is overshadowed by the FA Cup Final. Seems a bit daft to have it on the same day (I believe they are both scheduled for 30 May). The SC is unique, what with it being the oldest actual trophey and all. Should be on a day for itself and promoted as something special and ‘Scottish’, pipe bands, TV features on finalists localities, something a global audience would get into — and preferably not the glum gathering of pundits who were on the box for last week’s LCF. Dear oh dear … a dour bunch. Should let the BBC Alba production team get their paws on the SCF, imo.

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Billy BoycePosted on12:03 pm - Mar 18, 2015

wottpi says:
March 18, 2015 at 11:34 am

Seem like McMurdo has caught a healthy dose of TSFM

I would say that Dear Bill has caught a dose of Phil-itis. Are they sharing the same typewriter?

It will be interesting to hear Phil’s take on this latest money crisis at Ibrox. There was talk of HMRC seeking a winding-up order for the previous tax bill. I am surprised that the tax authorities have not yet enforced recovery of last month’s tax. What McMurdo does not mention is the onerous £278,000 figure due each month.

Pay day is normally the last Thursday of the month, so Keith Jackson won’t have long to wait now for his next exclusive.

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EstebanPosted on12:25 pm - Mar 18, 2015

TRFC’s “very existence” is at stake, says McMurdo.

Pah, mere liquidation can’t harm this club, sir.

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TBKPosted on12:26 pm - Mar 18, 2015

I have just been passed this from a friend (of a friend)…… Interestingly it confirms much of what has been mooted for so long in regard to Kings F&P status & successor company….

Dear “(redacted for anonymity)”

RE: RFC 2012 Plc, formerly The Rangers Football Club Plc

Thank you for your email of “(redacted for anonymity)” which has been referred to Enforcement Technical for reply as it concerns the re-use of a company name.

When a company goes into creditors’ voluntary or compulsory liquidation, insolvency law restricts the use of names which were previously used by the company. This restriction does not apply to companies in administration.

Anyone who was a director of the company within the twelve months before liquidation is prohibited by section 216 of the Insolvency Act 1986 from taking part in the management of any business using a name which had been used by the company during those twelve months.

The prohibition, which lasts for five years, extends to unincorporated sole trader and partnership businesses, and includes names which are so similar to a name used by the company in liquidation that they suggest an association with it.

There are some limited exceptions to this general rule but if someone who is not covered by one of the exceptions breaches this prohibition they not only commit a criminal offence, but also become personally liable for any debts of a company using the name.

One of the exceptions to the prohibition on the use of similar names is where a new business with a prohibited name acquires the whole, or substantially the whole, of the business of the company from the liquidator.

The other exceptions are where the person has obtained permission from the court for the use of the prohibited name, or where a limited company using the similar name had used that name for the whole of the twelve months before the liquidating company went into liquidation.

You say that “Rangers PLC went into liquidation in 2012. Both of these people [David Cunningham King and Paul Murray] served as directors up until that time”. RFC 2012 Plc (formerly known as The Rangers Football Club Plc) went into administration on 14 February 2012 and liquidation on 31 October 2012. Companies House shows that Paul Murray resigned on 23 May 2011 namely more than 12 months before the liquidation. However, David King resigned on 1 June 2012 which is within the 12 months before liquidation.

If you consider that someone is taking part in the management of a business with a prohibited name and that none of the exceptions apply, you can report it via the Insolvency Service’s complaint system at: https://www.gov.uk/complain-about-a-limited-company

I trust this assists.

Yours sincerely

“(redacted for anonymity)”

Investigations & Enforcement Technical Team …………………….

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BawsmanPosted on12:26 pm - Mar 18, 2015

rabtdog says:
March 18, 2015 at 10:58 am

“Rangers look set to finish third in the Championship”

Really?…………..In your words………”I think I would risk a bet on that not happening.” 😉

That’s three draws in their last four matches against the three poorest sides in the championship.

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TBKPosted on12:45 pm - Mar 18, 2015

I thought that last para most interesting…………”If you consider that someone is taking part in the management of a business with a prohibited name and that none of the exceptions apply, you can report it via the Insolvency Service’s complaint system at: https://www.gov.uk/complain-about-a-limited-company

perhaps the Insolvency Service should look at what exactly David Cunningham King’s involvement in this successor club/company is via Bill McMurdos claims ……. :mrgreen:

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seniorPosted on1:04 pm - Mar 18, 2015

If King or his proxies take them private will that mean the F&P conditions are no longer an obstacle for his lordship and his private company.
it seems he jetted out (I swear I am not a reporter) to bide time in SA until he can return as CEO of the privatised club.
What’s to stop him listing the club a year or two hence, to complete a trick Houdini would be proud of.
Does the F&P apply in the above scenario?

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TBKPosted on1:08 pm - Mar 18, 2015

Hows that change in Directorship dossier coming along? In particular King ……or indeed Murrays F&P status in terms of 10.2 (j)

“Scottish Football Association – Articles of Association

10.2 The Official Return shall include details of all officials, office-bearers, secretary, directors or members of the board of management or committee of such member, Team Staff, with their full designation, profession, business or occupation and full service address, and also, subject to the provisions of Article 13, full details of the interest of such member or any official, office-bearer, secretary, director or member of the board of management or committee of such member and of its or his associates as defined in Article 13.5 in any other member. The Board must be satisfied that any such person is fit and proper to hold such position within Association Football. The Board hereby reserves its discretion as to whether or not such a person is fit and proper, as aforesaid, after due consideration of all relevant facts which the Board has in its possession and knowledge, including the undernoted list which is acknowledged to be illustrative and not exhaustive:-……..

(j) he has been a director of a club in membership of any National Association within the 5-year period preceding such club having undergone an insolvency event…”


10.8 In the event of a Change of Control of any club, the board of directors or the board of management or committee (as the case may be) of such club immediately prior to the Change of Control shall prepare and deliver to the Scottish FA (in such form as the Scottish FA shall prescribe from time to time) at the time of or prior to the Change of Control a certificate signed by an authorised signatory of the outgoing board of directors or the board of management or committee (as the case may be) of such club confirming that they have conducted an investigation into the provenance of the person(s) who is/are prepared to take Control of the club, having regard to the factors listed in Article 10.2, together with such other factors as they (acting reasonably) think fit. In the event that the Board is not satisfied that any such person(s) is or are fit and proper to hold a position within Association Football and determines that the outgoing board of directors or the board of management or committee (as the case may be) of the relevant club which prepared the certificate referred to in this Article 10.8 did not act with due care and attention in doing so, the club shall be deemed to be in breach of these Articles and the Judicial Panel will have jurisdiction to deal with any such breach and to impose sanctions in relation to it as prescribed within the Judicial Panel Protocol.”

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TBKPosted on1:16 pm - Mar 18, 2015

senior says:
March 18, 2015 at 1:04 pm

Yes, Insolvency Service could move to have King arrested/ imprisoned or fined regardless if the company is listed or not.

King and Murray still need approval of SFA in terms of the Articles of Association ….. see 10.2 (j)

IMO, neither pass this.

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y4rmyPosted on1:17 pm - Mar 18, 2015

Clive James once wrote of Jane Fonda that: “I find Fonda very useful; any opinion of mine which I discover Fonda shares I immediately examine to find out what’s wrong with it”

I find myself in the same position with regard to Bill McMurdo’s latest blog. It’s hard to reconcile this concise, rational assessment of matters with the barking mad cant he usually spouts.

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Cygnus X2Posted on1:36 pm - Mar 18, 2015

Bill McMurdo said

“The clock is ticking and this time Rangers’ very existence is at stake.”

“This time”?

Surely, last time Rangers’ very existence was also at stake and it actually ceased to exist?

Shouldn’t he have said “The clock is ticking and this time Rangers’ very existence is at stake…again.”

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stevoPosted on1:59 pm - Mar 18, 2015

The much-referenced plan to bring exciting Champions League action back to Ibrox has a crucial flaw. Not only would Rangers actually have to win the Premiership, they would also have to overcome a particularly brutal seeding disadvantage which would place them on a par with a club from Poland, Israel or Belarus which had never previously kicked a ball in European competition – and that’s also if UEFA permits Rangers to assume the coefficient of their liquidated predecessor, otherwise their situation is very slightly worse.

In any case, Rangers would only be seeded in the first qualifying round of the Europa League, which a Scottish club can only participate in by finishing 3rd in the Premiership. By the time we reached the EL group stage draw this season, after 4 qualifying rounds, the lowliest club in pot 4 (Aalborg) still had a better coefficient than the one Rangers are facing. It would be complete lunacy at this stage to consider reaching the Champions League a realistic possibility. F91 Dudelange have a better chance.

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Resin_lab_dogPosted on2:04 pm - Mar 18, 2015

Tartanwulver says:
March 18, 2015 at 7:14 am

bfbpuzzled says:
March 17, 2015 at 10:36 pm


w.r.t. Rangersitis, I believe it is a specific substrain of Encephalitis which can be contracted from excessive ingestion of under cooked lamb.
(The infected sheep themselves show no adverse outward symptoms.)

According to the NHS website:

The symptoms of encephalitis are initially mild, but they can quickly become more serious.

Encephalitis usually begins with flu-like symptoms, such as:

high temperature (fever) of 38C (100.4F) or above
nausea and vomiting
joint pain

After this initial stage, more serious symptoms can begin to develop within hours or days, which may include:

changes in mental state, such as confusion, drowsiness or disorientation
seizures (fits)
changes in personality and behaviour
loss of consciousness

Flu-like symptoms that rapidly get worse and affect a person’s mental state should be treated as a medical emergency. Dial 999 immediately to request an ambulance.

Other symptoms of encephalitis can include:

sensitivity to bright lights (photophobia)
inability to speak
inability to control physical movements
stiff neck
hallucinations (seeing and hearing things that aren’t there)
loss of sensation in certain parts of the body
partial or total vision loss
involuntary eye movements, such as side-to-side eye movement

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John ClarkPosted on2:18 pm - Mar 18, 2015

Cygnus X2 says @1.36 pm
“Shouldn’t he have said ….”
No,no,no! And tsk tsk !
Dear old Rangers died, once and for all. It cannot “re-die”.
The entity which spuriously and entirely dishonestly trades under false pretences as “Rangers” is alive.
It can die. But not “again”.
We have to be quite precise in our use of language. “Rangers” as we all knew them ceased to be .
The new club styled “The Rangers FC” may or may not die: that depends on Mike Ashley.
But if they die,it will be (fair do’s!) their first death.


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tearsofjoyPosted on2:33 pm - Mar 18, 2015

Cygnus X2 says:

March 18, 2015 at 1:36 pm

Bill McMurdo said

“The clock is ticking and this time Rangers’ very existence is at stake.”

“This time”?

Surely, last time Rangers’ very existence was also at stake and it actually ceased to exist?

Shouldn’t he have said “The clock is ticking and this time THIS Rangers’ very existence is at stake…again.”
As my kids would say “FTFY” – fixed that for you.

Just one little word makes all the difference. 😆

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bfbpuzzledPosted on2:53 pm - Mar 18, 2015

It seems to me from a quick look at the above that Mr K and his ‘droogs require a “this is a fine fellow certificate” from LL and L. Two for the price of one with due diligence on the SD £5,000,000. What could possibly go wrong?

Not only that if the predicted delisting comes to fruition the value of share holdings will no doubt diminish of only on reduced marketability let alone lack of transparency I guess that will also affect the likelihood of fine fellow certification. I really must be missing some baldrickian cunning plan

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campsiejoePosted on3:16 pm - Mar 18, 2015

It would be a very brave person or organisation that tries to block the Messiah(s)
The media would go to Defcon One, and the usual suspects would whip up the mob before releasing them on all of the perceived enemies of TRFC
The Insolvency Service wouldn’t be swayed by such intimidation, would they
I’d like to think not

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neepheidPosted on3:30 pm - Mar 18, 2015

ecobhoy says:
March 18, 2015 at 9:58 am

If I was T3B I would be doing a deal with Ashley and let DK hang in the wind and hopefully take a chunk of his supporters with him. Let them set-up a new club on Glasgow Green and play in orange strips.

That’s not me being funny or even nasty but I believe Rangers can never move forward as the support is too fractured with different goals and for some it’s nothing to do with football.

The sooner they separate and move on then the sooner not only Scottish Football but Scottish society can do likewise.

Of course now that I’ve written this DK will no doubt appear waving wads of folding dosh declaring victory in our time 😆

Since outside investment appears to be off the table, the current options are somewhat limited.

1) King is a generous and solvent billionaire with advanced Rangeritis. He puts in his £50 million, and the world of Scottish football returns to normal. Champions League money absolutely guaranteed. Honest.

2) Other Real Rangers Men have loads of loose change which they can well afford to lose. They are men of generous spirit. So they put together £50 million, and chuck it in via soft loans, shares in a private company, or whatever. Again, a reset to the natural order. Celtic are allowed to snap up a few crumbs from the rich man’s table, but they know their place, and all is well again with Scottish football.

3) Having seized control of the Blue Room, King and the RRM get cold feet once they realise that there is no money left, and big bills must be paid. They crawl to Mike Ashley and seek his forgiveness, furiously licking his boots all the while. Ashley relents and continues the drip feed, but on ever more onerous terms. Mid table mediocrity, a balanced budget- this really won’t do.

4) Nobody comes up with enough money, bills don’t get paid, and the company goes into administration/liquidation. With a floating charge already in place, Ashley calls the shots and gets his money back, retains the IP, and sells the other football bits to the RRM, who then have to start all over again.

I’ve probably missed something, but option 4 looks favourite to me. But as Ecobhoy says, and I agree, a big bag of mysterious cash might appear on the scene at any moment. I just wait, watch and wonder.

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incredibleadamsparkPosted on5:09 pm - Mar 18, 2015


Brilliant article in the Guardian. I was pretty young at the time but remember watching the second leg against Barcelona on the TV. Not sure if it was live or highlights but when Clarke scored I remember our neighbour, a big Killie fan, banging on the wall excitedly and my dad, a big Rangers fan, banging back. A nice wee trip down memory lane and a fantastic achievement by United.

Jim McLean was not without his faults but what a manager he was and the events surrounding the European Cup semi-final (European Cup semi-final!) against Roma are well worth a read. The photograph in the article with the Roma players ‘interacting’ with McLean and his young assistant is priceless.


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McCaig`s TowerPosted on5:19 pm - Mar 18, 2015

It has always been difficult to predict what will happen in the next episode of the Ibrox saga, not least due to the bizarre nature of past events. I think things have got harder of late, as there have been few pronouncements over which one can ruminate. Mike Ashley never says much, his lieutenants are now keeping quiet and it’s probably unwise to give too much credence to anything Mr King says anyway. Even disclosures to the Stock Market have been scarce, and may dry up altogether, so I’m forced to speculate.

I still think cashflow must be an issue, and someone is going to have to stick their hands in their (or possibly someone else’s) pocket sharpish.

My guess is Mike Ashley doesn’t like losing at any business adventure, and having appeared to have been bested in the EGM stakes, he will want both King and the rest of the business world to believe he is the better player, and one to take seriously.

That means either he is going take advantage of the company’s cash flow worries to squeeze the new regime until the pips squeak, or he will collapse the house of cards in a damaging (and perhaps terminal) way.

I suspect that whilst the latter option may give him short term pleasure, the calculating side of him will outweigh the emotional side, and he will prefer to do a deal that favours him. He will be like the poker player who has just lost a big pot but has now pushed all his chips into the middle and is calmly looking his opponent in the eye, asking him if he has the cards, and has the money, and, in short, if he feels lucky. Time may tell.

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batumi95Posted on5:22 pm - Mar 18, 2015

Currently en route to CP and saw Robbie Neilson and Steve Crawford in the petrol station at Dundee. The thing that struck me most was they were in a decent 60 plate Saab. I wonder what the TRFC manager would roll up in? Audi? New of course, perhaps a custom Range Rover? Maybe I’m wrong but it demonstrates the realism at one  club anyway. 

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Ron.an.MathPosted on5:43 pm - Mar 18, 2015

Incredibleadamspark .
punched and broke an overhead light in the pub celebrating that united win. .
group of us old firm fans roaring united on just as we did with aberdeen against madrid . .we are not all totally partisan. .
would find it more difficult to go and watch/support gers in europe with my bluenose pal like I used to now that we know they were there under false pretences. .
sad but true..

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ecobhoyPosted on6:11 pm - Mar 18, 2015

WRT to McMurdo’s latest blog

He states:

Rangers forums abound with fans voicing their concerns that the new regime behind the scenes at Ibrox has not started any better than the new football manager.

The attacks on the new Board started when it was obvious they had won the egm before the vote even took place. The comments made on various Bear sites are basically identical and continually expounded.

OK so I’m paranoid in thinking there might be a PR masterplan in progress and a read of McMurdo’s Blog could well be a blueprint for those attacking the new Board.

Of course not for one moment do I believe McMurdo is capable of crafting such an approach – nope that would take a master Architect and not the sorcerer’s apprentice.

Still with a spare blue blazer for a fan rep hanging in the Blue Room there is room for dreams in the rarefied air at the top of the marble staircase.

What McMurdo fails to recognise is that the fan base overwhelmingly rejected Ashley and his lieutenants because they weren’t prepared to go down the austerity route of aspiring to be a mid Premiership level club.

I have always said that it’s up to Bears to decide what kind of club they wanted and they patently didn’t want a Newcastle clone.

So they gambled big time with DK – they knew they were doing it – but they made that decision. It probably won’t work but I have the feeling that they would rather pull Ibrox down about them financially by walking away en masse and you can forget about them buying SD tat.

I think it really is all at the tipping point – perhaps DK is playing a game of high-wire brinkmanship and is going to ride to the rescue just before the end with loadsa wonga. Who knows?

But time is running out and that seems to be the only certainty in the whole situation.

Perhaps if McMurdo had been doing his homework and exposing previous Boards then Rangers might not have fallen so low. But he didn’t and Bears will never forget that and simply dismiss him.

He no longer has a constituency within the Rangers support.

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jean7brodiePosted on6:30 pm - Mar 18, 2015

philmacgiollabhain.ie/mike-ashley-sets-out-tough-conditions-for-new-loan/#more-6033 … Big Mike is a reasonable man…

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Billy BoycePosted on6:32 pm - Mar 18, 2015

Here is an extract from Rangers Media suggesting that Park (T3B) is none too happy with the Jo’burg Messiah.

“There isn’t any security available apart from Ibrox unless SD‘s first £5 million is repaid. Then Rangers will need a further £5 million for the next ten weeks. What assets could he secure £10 million against? Even SD were looking for future shirt sponsorship money to offset risk.

Word from the members lounge last night is that Park is a bit pissed off at being left holding the baby as it were. The personal liability of directors when trading in a knowingly trading in an insolvent state and the fact that King is not a director and is safely home in Africa is not lost on him.

King appears lo have stitched Park and the others up nicely. This is why you should never take up a directorship of a company unless you know there are no insolvency matters. Unfortunately some people get carried away with their ego’s and become easily duped.”

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Resin_lab_dogPosted on6:32 pm - Mar 18, 2015

Rangers then…. Sevco Now…. Sports Direct Forever!


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theredpillPosted on6:40 pm - Mar 18, 2015

broganrogantrevinoandhogan says:
March 18, 2015 at 10:55 am

Thank you for that it made the hair on the back of my neck stand on end
with the my thoughts going back to the brilliant Brazilians.

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StevieBCPosted on6:52 pm - Mar 18, 2015

Billy Boyce says:
March 18, 2015 at 6:32 pm

Word from the members lounge last night is that Park is a bit pissed off at being left holding the baby as it were. The personal liability of directors when trading in a knowingly trading in an insolvent state and the fact that King is not a director and is safely home in Africa is not lost on him.

King appears to have stitched Park and the others up nicely.

The obstructions/delay to King becoming a director may have been quite useful.

I presume he now has full access to the detail at RIFC/TRFC – via Paul Murray.
King still has the option to walk away – or at least ensure that he is not able to take on a directorship.
He could just sit as a shareholder, giving the Board ‘his full support’, [but not cash] ?

No idea what will happen next though… 🙄

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Resin_lab_dogPosted on6:59 pm - Mar 18, 2015

StevieBC says:
March 18, 2015 at 6:52 pm

Billy Boyce says:
March 18, 2015 at 6:32 pm


Of course if DCK had a Nomad lined up, RIFC might not be kicked off AIM.
And if RIFC was being traded on AIM, the terms of any loan deals with MASH would have to be disclosed. 😕

Whereas if they were kicked off, these could be kept relatively confidential. 😉
Including from the bears.

Of course, with RRM of impeccable character :irony: and a commitment to transparency 🙄 esconced atop the marble staircase, such a situation would be unthinkable. 😈

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easyJamboPosted on7:25 pm - Mar 18, 2015

batumi95 says: March 18, 2015 at 5:22 pm

Currently en route to CP and saw Robbie Neilson and Steve Crawford in the petrol station at Dundee. The thing that struck me most was they were in a decent 60 plate Saab. I wonder what the TRFC manager would roll up in? Audi? New of course, perhaps a custom Range Rover? Maybe I’m wrong but it demonstrates the realism at one club anyway.
Neilson and Crawford will have been on their way back from the Development League match against Dundee at Forfar this afternoon (I was there too).

The Saab would have been from the previous lease deal that the club had for their senior management five years ago.

It’s probably been relatively cheap to extend the deal following administration.

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ChristyboyPosted on7:31 pm - Mar 18, 2015

This really is getting ridiculous. So DK&Co finally get to the top of the marble staircase, banging on about what they’re going to do, stop all the contracts, inject the team with new cash and throws off two directors from the board.Then ……nothing! No cash, no plans and no Dave !!!!!!! Not a penny between them and still looking for other people’s money. A complete blowhard. They’ve no shame, asking MA to pony up again after they’ve taken over. If ever there was a time for a club/company to just pack it in, its now . This is just embarrassing.

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Jingso.JimsiePosted on7:42 pm - Mar 18, 2015

Was it Napoleon or Mike Ashley who said:

“Never interfere with your enemy while he’s making a mistake.”

I think T3Bs have been done up like a kipper by DCK. Reputational damage to them will be the least of it.

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theredpillPosted on8:14 pm - Mar 18, 2015


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vansenPosted on8:48 pm - Mar 18, 2015

Im with you on this Christyboy. After everything that has happened, all the tough talking and promises, to now request money from the very person they have spent weeks slating is genuinely embarrassing.

Maybe now most of the supporters will see King for what he really is.

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ianagainPosted on8:54 pm - Mar 18, 2015

This SP approval. Not law right? Mearly a motion. Why’s SFA SPL losing the held?

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ianagainPosted on9:03 pm - Mar 18, 2015

Phil if correct lays the DK fairystory bare.
All the bluster and they have to go cap in hand for a mere £5mil.?
Has DK businesses been struck with liquidity issues just as the blue yonder beckons?
I wait and wonder.

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Resin_lab_dogPosted on9:16 pm - Mar 18, 2015

I am genuinely surprised we haven’t seen a softening of tone towards Mash yet from the various Bear factions, in the ‘hearts and minds’ battle.

On the basis that (as Henry Kissinger once said) “When you’ve got them by the balls, their hearts and minds will follow!”

t.b.h. I am somewhat mystified why Mash would want to cheapen the ‘sports direct’ brand identity by sticking a Rangers badge on it (especially given the standard of on field product at the moment), but there you go. I am sure its all part of some grand plan.

But its starting to look like we should expect the bears to be decked out in official SD clobber for the forseeable.

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TincksPosted on9:19 pm - Mar 18, 2015

Seriously, are DK and the 3B’s potless? Have they taken over with out having the funding in place, either their own or other peoples money?

If so what was the point? They can’t crash the bus whilst MA has the floating charge surely, what would be the point?

If PMG is right then they need MA to lend them the money just to keep the lights on? Forget DK, I can’t believe the 3B’s would have got themselves in this position.

What am I missing here?

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scapaflowPosted on9:19 pm - Mar 18, 2015

ianagain says:
March 18, 2015 at 8:54 pm

Nope, an amendment from the Greens to a community empowerment bill going through the SP. Expect some heavy lobbing from SFA/SPFL/Supporters direct against it, before final vote. (Supporters direct should perhaps change their name to Supporters (of the SFA) Direct.)

It would only allow a buyout if the management led the company/club into administration, if I’ve read the thing properly

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tearsofjoyPosted on9:20 pm - Mar 18, 2015

Ron.an.Math says:
March 18, 2015 at 5:43 pm
Incredibleadamspark .

would find it more difficult to go and watch/support gers in europe
Having lived in England for nigh on 30 years your post raises an old memory for me. In 1993 when Rangers beat Leeds I won a great deal of money backing Rangers to win the 2nd leg in Leeds (after getting a real doing in the 1st leg , I might add). How ironic they have both collapsed financially.

Fast forward just a few seasons to a bar in Edinburgh. Rangers playing Ajax and getting soundly beaten and the entire pub cheering every goal much to the amazement of a small , nervous group of clearly Dutch folk. I was genuinely surprised at how things had changed for the worse in that Rangers had become detested. No one was interested in the “Scottish club” angle any more. It was nothing like whatI can remember from my childhood days of B&W broadcasts on Eurovision.

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ianagainPosted on9:40 pm - Mar 18, 2015

Thanks Scapa I’ll give it a read.

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Resin_lab_dogPosted on9:52 pm - Mar 18, 2015

Tincks says:
March 18, 2015 at 9:19 pm

Seriously, are DK and the 3B’s potless? Have they taken over with out having the funding in place, either their own or other peoples money?

If so what was the point? They can’t crash the bus whilst MA has the floating charge surely, what would be the point?

If PMG is right then they need MA to lend them the money just to keep the lights on? Forget DK, I can’t believe the 3B’s would have got themselves in this position.

What am I missing here?



Basically if DCK and the 3B want to give a cash gift to RIFC from their personal fortunes, there is little to stop them.

If – alternatively – they want to advance soft loans… soft in the sense of low interest and easy repayment terms…. weelll….
Suppose it turns out Mash is in a position to crash the bus?

Without security, in the event of an insolvency, those soft loans effectively turn into a £5m gift.
“Thanks very much says Mike. Give me my property, imgage rights, and I’ll see you guys later to collect my share of the shirt sales if you ever get this wreck back on the road”
The loan becomes a gift. Mash the main beneficiary.

If alternatively, Goldilocks and the 3 bears wanted to ‘finance’ RIFC rather than donate to it… well Directors of finance houses – or even trustees of trust funds – have fiduciary duties to uphold. Basically this means not giving away money to your mates/ pet projects without the pretence of any semblence of quid pro quo for the organisation advancing the finance.
Its why you can’t get a mortgage without owning property.
There has to be something with a notional value going the other way in the transaction.

Furthermore, If (as I suspect) DCKs and the 3Bs hope was to buy RIFC cheap as a distressed asset, and turn a coin on the back of building it back up to its perceived rightful place, well … it seems they may have been beaten to it.

Because RIFC looks a bit like what happened to banks after the financial crash. The Government stepped in (a bit like MASH did in the case of RIFC), stabilised the ship, and ultimately split each of the busted banks into 2 divisions: A ‘good’ bank containing the solvent, viable retail banking businesses, and A ‘bad’ notionally insolvent bank, containing the toxic debts.
This was done with a view to selling on the former (good bank) as trading entities, while supporting an orderly and controlled disintegration of the latter (bad bank), rather than the chaos that would have otherwise destroyed both divisions and led to financial meltdown in the rest of the economy.

Well RIFC has been now largely carved up into the solvent ‘good’ Sevco (retail) – which Mash pretty much owns, and ‘bad’ notionally insolvent sevco (football operations), which DCK and the 3B have just triumphantly wrested from out of his control.

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