Everything Has Changed

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Everything Has Changed

The recent revelations of a potential winding up order being served on Rangers Newco certainly does have a sense of “deja vu all over again” for the average reader of this blog.

It reminds me of an episode of the excellent Western series Alias Smith & Jones. The episode was called The Posse That Wouldn’t Quit. In the story, the eponymous anti-heroes were being tracked by a particularly dogged group of law-men whom they just couldn’t shake off – and they spent the entire episode trying to do just that. In a famous quote, Thaddeus Jones, worn out from running, says to Joshua Smith, “We’ve got to get out of this business!”

The SFM has been trying since its inception to widen the scope and remit of the discussion and debate on the blog. Unsuccessfully. Like the posse that wouldn’t quit, Rangers are refusing to go away as a story. With the latest revelations, I confided in my fellow mods that perhaps we too should get out of this business. I suspect that, even if we did, this story would doggedly trail our paths until it wears us all down.

The fact that the latest episode of the Rangers saga has sparked off debate on this blog may even confirm the notion subscribed to by Rangers fans that TSFM is obsessed with their club. However even they must agree that the situation with regard to Rangers would be of interest to anyone with a stake in Scottish Football; and that they themselves must be concerned by the pattern of events which started over a decade ago and saw the old club fall into decline on a trajectory which ended in liquidation.

But let me enter into a wee discussion which doesn’t merely trot out the notion of damage done to others or sins against the greater good, but which enters the realm of the damage done to one of the great institutions of world sport, Rangers themselves.

David Murray was regarded by Rangers fans as a hero. His bluster, hubris and (as some see it) arrogant contempt for his competitors afforded him a status as a champion of the cause as long as it was underpinned by on-field success.

The huge pot of goodwill he possessed was filled and topped-up by a dripping tap of GIRUY-ness for many years beyond the loss of total ascendency that his spending (in pursuit of European success) had achieved, and only began to bottom out around the time the club was sold to Craig Whyte.  In retrospect, it can be seen that the damage that was done to the club’s reputation by the Murray ethos (not so much a Rangers ethos as a Thatcherite one) and reckless financial practice is now well known.

Notwithstanding the massive blemish on its character due to its employment policies, the (pre-Murray) Rangers ethos portrayed a particularly Scottish, perhaps even Presbyterian stoicism. It was that of a conservative, establishment orientated, God-fearing and law-abiding institution that played by the rules. It was of a club that would pay its dues, applied thrift and honesty in its business dealings, and was first to congratulate rivals on successes (witness the quiet dignity of John Lawrence at the foot of the aircraft steps with an outstretched hand to Bob Kelly when Celtic returned from Lisbon).

If Murray had dug a hole for that Rangers, Craig Whyte set himself up to fill it in. No neo-bourgeois shirking of responsibilities and duty to the public for him; his signature was more pre-war ghetto, hiding behind the couch until the rent man moved along to the next door. Whyte just didn’t pay any bills and with-held money that was due to be passed along to the treasury to fund the ever more diminished public purse. Where Murray’s Rangers had been regarded by the establishment and others as merely distasteful, Whyte’s was now regarded as a circus act, and almost every day of his tenure brought more bizarre and ridiculous news which had Rangers fans cringing, the rest laughing up their sleeve, and Bill Struth birling in his grave.

The pattern was now developing in plain sight. Murray promised Rangers fans he would only sell to someone who could take the club on, but he sold it – for a pound – to a guy whose reputation did not survive the most cursory of inspection. Whyte protested that season tickets had not been sold in advance, that he used his own money to buy the club. Both complete fabrications. Yet until the very end of Whyte’s time with the club, he, like Murray still, was regarded as hero by a fan-base which badly wanted to believe that the approaching car-crash could be avoided.

Enter Charles Green. Having been bitten twice already, the fans’ first instincts were to be suspicious of his motives. Yet in one of history’s greatest ironic turnarounds, he saw off the challenge of real Rangers-minded folk (like John Brown and Paul Murray) and their warnings, and by appealing to what many regard as the baser instincts of the fan-base became the third hero to emerge in the boardroom in as many years. The irony of course is that Green himself shouldn’t really pass any kind of Rangers sniff-test; personal, sporting, business or cultural; and yet there he is the spokesman for 140 years of the aspirations of a quarter of the country’s fans.

To be fair though, what else could Rangers fans do? Green had managed (and shame on the administration process and football authorities for this) to pick up the assets of the club for less (nett) than Craig Whyte and still maintained a presence in the major leagues.

If they hadn’t backed him only the certainty of doom lay before them. It was Green’s way or the highway in other words – and speaking of words, his sounded mighty fine. But do the real Rangers minded people really buy into it all?

First consider McCoist. I do not challenge his credentials as a Rangers minded man, and his compelling need to be an effective if often ineloquent spokesman for the fans. However, according to James Traynor (who was then acting as an unofficial PR advisor to the Rangers manager), McCoist was ready to walk in July (no pun intended) because he did not trust Green. The story was deliberately leaked, to undermine Green, by both Traynor and McCoist. McCoist also refused for a long period of time to endorse the uptake of season books by Rangers fans, even went as far as to say he couldn’t recommend it.

So what changed? Was it a Damascene conversion to the ways of Green, or was it the 250,000 shares in the new venture that he acquired. Nothing improper or unethical – but is it idealism? Is it fighting for the cause?

Now think Traynor. I realise that can be unpleasant, but bear with me.

Firstly, when he wrote that story on McCoist’s resignation, (and later backed it up on radio claiming he had spoken to Ally before printing the story), he was helping McCoist to twist Green’s arm a little. Now, and I’m guessing that Charles didn’t take this view when he saw the story in question, Green thinks that Traynor is a “media visionary”?

Traynor also very publicly, in a Daily Record leader, took the “New Club line” and was simultaneously contemptuous of Green.

What happened to change both their minds about each other? Could it have been (for Green) the PR success of having JT on board and close enough to control, and (for Traynor) an escape route for a man who had lost the battle with own internal social media demons?

Or, given both McCoist’s and Traynor’s past allegiance to David Murray, is it something else altogether?

Whatever it is, both Traynor and McCoist have started to sing from a totally different hymn sheet to Charles Green since the winding up order story became public. McCoist’s expert étude in equivocation at last Friday’s press conference would have had the Porter in Macbeth slamming down the portcullis (now there’s an irony). He carefully distanced himself from his chairman and ensured that his hands are clean. Traynor has been telling one story, “we have an agreement on the bill”, and Green another, “we are not paying it”.

And what of Walter Smith? At first, very anti-Charles Green, he even talked about Green’s “new club”. Then a period of silence followed by his being co-opted to the board and a “same club” statement. Now in the face of the damaging WUP story, more silence. Hardly a stamp of approval on Green’s credentials is it?

Rangers fans would be right to be suspicious of any non-Rangers people extrapolating from this story to their own version of Armageddon, but shouldn’t they also reserve some of that scepticism for Green and Traynor (neither are Rangers men, and both with only a financial interest in the club) when they say “all is well” whilst the real Rangers man (McCoist) is only willing to say “as far as I have been told everything is well”

As a Celtic fan, it may be a fair charge to say that I don’t have Rangers best interests at heart, but I do not wish for their extinction, nor do I believe that one should ignore a quarter of the potential audience for our national game. Never thought I’d hear myself say this, but apart from one (admittedly mightily significant) character defect, I can look at the Rangers of Struth and Simon, Gillick and Morton, Henderson and Baxter, and Waddell and Lawrence (and God help me even Jock Wallace) with fondness and a degree of nostalgia.

I suspect most Rangers fans are deeply unhappy about how profoundly their club has changed. To be fair, my own club no longer enchants me in the manner of old. As sport has undergone globalisation, everything has changed. Our relationship to our clubs has altered, the business models have shifted, and the aspirations of clubs is different from that of a generation ago. It has turned most football clubs into different propositions from the institutions people of my generation grew up supporting, but Rangers are virtually unrecognisable.

The challenge right now for Rangers fans is this. How much more damage will be done to the club’s legacy before this saga comes to an end?

And by then will it be too late to do anything about it?

Most people on this blog know my views about the name of Green’s club. I really don’t give a damn because for me it is not important. I do know, like Craig Whyte said, that in the fullness of time there will be a team called Rangers, playing football in a blue strip at Ibrox, and in the top division in the country.

I understand that this may be controversial to many of our contributors, but I hope that this incarnation of Rangers is closer to that of Lawrence and Simon than to Murray and Souness.

About the author

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Trisidium administrator

Trisidium is a Dunblane businessman with a keen interest in Scottish Football. He is a Celtic fan, although the demands of modern-day parenting have seen him less at games and more as a taxi service for his kids.

4,442 Comments so far

scapaflow14

scapaflow14Posted on11:16 am - Feb 28, 2013


Night Terror says:

Thursday, February 28, 2013 at 11:12

Thanks for the heads up on the official spin. I’ll wait and read the report before commenting

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Not The Huddle MalcontentPosted on11:16 am - Feb 28, 2013


250k – it barely scratches the surface of the prize money they were awarded for 1 years worth of cheating, never mind 10. How is that proportional?

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paulmac2Posted on11:19 am - Feb 28, 2013


Not The Huddle Malcontent says:

Thursday, February 28, 2013 at 11:05
……………….

So there we have it….

The SFA will condone and allow improperly registered players playing in UEFA competitions and Scotland matches……

Are the SFA aware that UEFA view improperly registered players as illegal in a sporting sense…and the only appropriate sanctions are a 3-0 award the their opponents as the players in question should not have been on the field at the time….

If they should not have been on the field the match score is invalid…that is how FIFA and UEFA view it….

Charlie Green is correct….the SFA are corrupt…and so it would appear the SPL and LNS!

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bl00teredPosted on11:19 am - Feb 28, 2013


Guitly and the Punishment is a meagre fine that will never be paid. FFS! 🙁

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wottpiPosted on11:20 am - Feb 28, 2013


Not The Huddle Malcontent says:
Thursday, February 28, 2013 at 11:05

As there was no link , word of the £250k fine comes from STV

http://local.stv.tv/glasgow/215764-rangers-oldco-fined-250000-by-spl-commission-but-club-retains-titles/

Are they still pals with SDM thus the ‘scoop’ ?

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aramintamoobeamqcPosted on11:21 am - Feb 28, 2013


If this is really it, then all I can do is ‘walk away’. Am not paying any more of my hard earned cash on ticket money or subscription television. Rigged, corrupt, a stinking mess.

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Gym TrainerPosted on11:24 am - Feb 28, 2013


So Dundee FC must be praying for Hearts to go into administration then…

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andypandimoniumPosted on11:25 am - Feb 28, 2013


I believe that those clubs which have been punished for rule breaches in the recent past have now a very good argument that the penalties they received were disproportionate to the offence. I would be very interested in seeing the SFA determination should any such club choose to appeal. And what of recent Scottish Cup competitions where illegally registered players were allowed to compete? Will the SFA speak?

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Livia BurlandoPosted on11:25 am - Feb 28, 2013


Anyone still think Lord Nimmo Smith is an upstanding judge who would never be allow his fine legal judgement to be sullied?

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Night TerrorPosted on11:25 am - Feb 28, 2013


It will be interesting to see if, as reported, LNS has found that many platers were improperly registered but has felt that was as far as his remit extended.

The logical consequence of players being improperly registered may be yet to come. Or perhaps not.

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bobcobb74Posted on11:26 am - Feb 28, 2013


I actually dont understand how they can be found guilty of fielding improperly registered players and yet the results in those matches are allowed to stand.

Dont pay taxes. Dont pay your debts. Dont play by the same rules as everyone else. And dont suffer any consequences.

The best wee (corrupt as feck) country in the world.

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NawlitePosted on11:26 am - Feb 28, 2013


Sorry, but how can this – “The commission has ruled it was necessary for Rangers to declare the payments and, as such, has declared players improperly registered were ineligible to participate in league matches.” – not lead to those results being reversed?

Will UEFA/FIFA look at this decision if only fans were to bring this to their attention?

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Sugar DaddyPosted on11:27 am - Feb 28, 2013


Off to get a bigger carpet, more whitewash, wider fence, larger box of fudge & a big book on squirrels. Change from £250k as well, ya dancer.

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thebasharmilestegPosted on11:28 am - Feb 28, 2013


Early days yet and we need to see the fine print, but this looks like a result pretty close to the potential worst case I posted earlier. Guilty and a token fine imposed on a dead body. I’m beginning to think I may never watch another football match for the rest of my life. You might as well follow professional wrestling.

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Parson St. BhoyPosted on11:28 am - Feb 28, 2013


Pass the goat.

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Night TerrorPosted on11:29 am - Feb 28, 2013


scapaflow14 says:

Thanks for the heads up on the official spin. I’ll wait and read the report before commenting

Quite right too.

I’m merely getting caught up in all the excitement and basing my comments on the best info we have right now.

If the facts of the LNS inquiry are as reported, haven’t Rangers’ critics got an absolutely terrible record in predicting the guilt and punishment of the various clubs and companies?

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aramintamoobeamqcPosted on11:29 am - Feb 28, 2013


Squirrel spotted in Glasgow area.

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BrendaPosted on11:29 am - Feb 28, 2013


RIP and goodbye Scottish football ………….. Run by cheats and cowards. LNS ? Such a let down to your profession.

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smartbhoyPosted on11:29 am - Feb 28, 2013


Guilty of fielding ineligible players over a 10 year period…… A liquidated club fined £250,000, equals no consequences or punishment.

Scottish football is now farcical and the SPL and LNS have now switched off the life support machine.

Over and goodnight from me from. Not one more penny shall be spent propping up a corrupt organisation.

The biggest punishment is reserved for Scottish Football Clubs. Cheated out of financial gain and honours. Now a lot of decent law abiding fans will refuse to attend football matches of their various clubs as they’re participating in a corrupt competition.

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blackboabPosted on11:30 am - Feb 28, 2013


hi..dont often post much on here but i do visit this site often but i need to say something about this verdict …guilty …250,000 fine to be paid by the oldco ?….really ?….lord nimmo will need to come up with some damn good reasons as to how a club can be kicked out the scottish cup for a mistake on a form and yet rangers can have ten years of “mistakes” and get a small fine that will never be paid ?..

seemingly celtic were fined more for tapping up tommy burns a number of years ago ?..this report has to be good from lord nimmo to justify this or scottish football is probably finished for good.

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bestdressedchickenPosted on11:30 am - Feb 28, 2013


BBC Scotland’s Alasdair Lamont
“Rangers oldco has been fined £250,000 by an independent commission investigating allegations of failing to correctly register players. Full details of the judgement are to be published at noon, but it had earlier emerged that Rangers would not be stripped of league titles.

“The judgement states that side letters should have been disclosed, but oldco management failed to do this. But the commission found no unfair competitive advantage was gained on the field. Non-disclosure had effect of rendering all the registered players ineligible, so a fine was imposed for an administrative error.

“Rangers won the league five times in the period under investigation 2001-2011, in 2003, 2005, 2009, 2010 and 2011.”

Jesus wept. I’m out.

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angus1983Posted on11:30 am - Feb 28, 2013


“A fine was imposed for the administrative eror”.

Who’d have thought.

Bye bye, fitba.

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tibfkaelcPosted on11:30 am - Feb 28, 2013


“Rangers oldco has been fined £250,000 by an independent commission investigating allegations of failing to correctly register players. Full details of the judgement are to be published at noon, but it had earlier emerged that Rangers would not be stripped of league titles.

“The judgement states that side letters should have been disclosed, but oldco management failed to do this. But the commission found no unfair competitive advantage was gained on the field. Non-disclosure had effect of rendering all the registered players ineligible, so a fine was imposed for an administrative error.

“Rangers won the league five times in the period under investigation 2001-2011, in 2003, 2005, 2009, 2010 and 2011.”

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Night TerrorPosted on11:33 am - Feb 28, 2013


An administrative error?

Seriously? Any reading of the FTT(T) report makes that interpretation very, very hard to believe.

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scapaflow14

scapaflow14Posted on11:35 am - Feb 28, 2013


While awaiting the report, I have no dout that we will see lots of people demading the heads of Messers Doncaster, Ogilvy and Regan. Their handling of this shambles has, indeed, been shambolic. Yet, there the three Aunt Sallys stand, still in post.

Why? Well in spite of everything that has happened, all three of them have retained, the unwavering, unswerving and uncritical support of their respective boards. These boards are in the main, made up of men steeped in Scottish football. Men who fully understood the havoc that their actions and inactions would wreak on Scottish football, but they did it anyway. That they have done so while deflecting all criticism on to their Aunt Sallys is worthy of admiration for their low cunnning. However that admiration, is far, far, out weighed by the contempt that I hold each and every one of them in.

I would not be surprised if one or more of the Aunt Sallys goes before the end of the year, but even if all three of them go it will make no difference. As long as the real villians of the piece sit on these boards their will be, can be, no meaningful change.

If I may borrow something from the other tradition, it is Cromwell’s advice to the Rump Parliament:

“Go, get you out! Make haste! Ye venal slaves be gone! So! Take away that shining bauble there, and lock up the doors.

In the name of God, go!”

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whispererPosted on11:36 am - Feb 28, 2013


don’t have the time just now to check back … but last night someone on here said … LNS will not strip titles BUT will find guilty … Thus 0-3 results … Thus they in effect lose their title of champions .. An he LNS will not be seen to have stripped Titles … Sorry must dash !!!

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onceabhoyPosted on11:40 am - Feb 28, 2013


If reports of £250k fine are true then absolutely disgusting. No club in SFA jurisdiction can accept punishment for future mistakes given this reported result.

Celtic were fined £100k in 1994 for tapping Tommy Burns (how much is that these days?) and a decade of organised cheating warrants this! Laughing stock.

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bluPosted on11:41 am - Feb 28, 2013


andypandimonium says:
Thursday, February 28, 2013 at 11:25
0 0 i
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I believe that those clubs which have been punished for rule breaches in the recent past have now a very good argument that the penalties they received were disproportionate to the offence. I would be very interested in seeing the SFA determination should any such club choose to appeal. And what of recent Scottish Cup competitions where illegally registered players were allowed to compete? Will the SFA speak?

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Andy, I guess we won’t know the decision and rationale for it until after noon but in the cases you refer to the SFA changed the rules for their competition relatively recently after Dunfermline had an appeal against such a sanction (overturned cup result) upheld. So Spartans and East Stirlingshire were sanctioned for minor infringements but knew the rules. The LNS inquiry is also an SPL one and maybe they’d didn’t anticipate having to write rules for Thatcherite tax dodgers with money to buy expensive QCs and advisors on aggressive tax avoidance.Whatever, the reporting is of a guilty verdict and, if accurate, that’s a conclusion that will be referred to for at least 140 years, I’m sure.

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justpedylanPosted on11:42 am - Feb 28, 2013


An adminsitrative error! 10 years of cheating the taxman and the governing body at a cost (that will never be paid) of 25,000 a year. That is the best investment the dead club, or any other club, ever made.

Baxendale Walker worth his weight in gold.

Scottish football dies of shame – finally and inevitably.

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Galling fiverPosted on11:43 am - Feb 28, 2013


F*cking carve up. Nothing has changed only confirmed. I’m getting more ST’s next year it’s clear my club needs all the help it can get. Will be very interested in the no comment approach now all the same.

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ecobhoyPosted on11:44 am - Feb 28, 2013


Livia Burlando says:
Thursday, February 28, 2013 at 11:25

Anyone still think Lord Nimmo Smith is an upstanding judge who would never be allow his fine legal judgement to be sullied?
====================================================================
I think perhaps we should wait to see the detailed statement before deciding on decrying anyone either professionally or morally. And just for the record, I am happy to say that LNS has a good legal brain and reputation and will have called the decision in line with his understanding of the applicable law & regulations and the evidence submitted along withf the other two members of the Commission.

Could the three of them get it wrong? Possibly, as they are human. Will there be any appeal – well let’s see the detail but I have never felt that an appeal would have followed even if there was a stripping of titles although I exclude any action which might be or have been taken by the RFFF as they will not even be attempting to apply rationality to the situation.

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Robert Coyle

Robert CoylePosted on11:44 am - Feb 28, 2013


Jane Lewis ‏@JaneLewisSport
RT: ‏@BBCAlLamont Judgement from Lord Nimmo Smith’s independent commission will say no unfair competitive advantage wasgained on the field
Retweeted by Electronic Tims
Expand Reply Retweet Favorite More

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wottpiPosted on11:45 am - Feb 28, 2013


I know people are hoping that the early reports are wrong and want more in the way of sanctions.

However if the verdict and guilt is accepted without going to appeal then if you ever find yourself in an argument with a T’Rangers fans all you have to say is ‘proven guilty of winning title by cheating the rules of Scottish football’

End of argument.

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billyj1Posted on11:45 am - Feb 28, 2013


Told you so!!
At 22.05 last night I posted and warned that The Establishment would ensure that The Establishment Club received no meaningful penalty.
What a sad country we live in where forces unknown to us rule.

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briggsbhoyPosted on11:45 am - Feb 28, 2013


reminds me of the story my late father told me. He ask the manager of one the businesses to sack the current bar manager in one of the Hotels in the chain as he discovered he had been pilfering. The managers reply was he couldn’t because he was in his lodge, my fathers reply was “well if you are both here tomorrow you will both be sacked, your choice.”

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scapaflow14

scapaflow14Posted on11:46 am - Feb 28, 2013


Galling fiver says:

Thursday, February 28, 2013 at 11:43

Look at agin at the composition of the boards of the SFA and the SPL. Collusion and complicity are the kindest way of describing the behaviour

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SeniorPosted on11:49 am - Feb 28, 2013


Irony of ironies. Old rangers cheat on a grand scale but the rest of Scottish football suffer.
It could well herald the demise of Celtic.
BTW don’t jump to conclusions yet. I always thought that the result will be hidden down in the bowels of the report. The devil may well be in the detail.

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ratethisthenyabampotsPosted on11:49 am - Feb 28, 2013


What about cup ties? What happens to those results? There’s a precedent there – Dunfermline, Spartans, East Stirling.

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aramintamoobeamqcPosted on11:50 am - Feb 28, 2013


Perhaps the only solution is to buy an ST for Spartans/other small clubs who were disproportionately punished for ‘administrative errors’

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BrendaPosted on11:53 am - Feb 28, 2013


Every club/manager or manager who have been punished by Scottish football should now appeal, I wonder if other teams this collection of cheats played outside Scottish football will just accept this ruling……. ‘ they cheated? ……. Yes but just a wee bit!! ‘

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Paul Buchanan (@PaoloBuchanio)Posted on11:56 am - Feb 28, 2013


Make no mistake. This ruling today is Armageddon for Scottish Football. Watch attendances and sponsorship slump. Corrupt beyond belief!! Transfer ban for the day after the window shuts, fines overturned by court of session, now this.

What is the point. prmote them today and give them the SPL title – give us all a break!

I’m away fishing and I won’t be back to football. My sons won’t weither if I have anything to do with it.

Over and out.

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Livia BurlandoPosted on11:56 am - Feb 28, 2013


Livia Burlando says:
Thursday, February 28, 2013 at 11:25

Anyone still think Lord Nimmo Smith is an upstanding judge who would never be allow his fine legal judgement to be sullied?
====================================================================
I think perhaps we should wait to see the detailed statement before deciding on decrying anyone either professionally or morally. And just for the record, I am happy to say that LNS has a good legal brain and reputation and will have called the decision in line with his understanding of the applicable law & regulations and the evidence submitted along withf the other two members of the Commission.

I agree we should proably wait for the detail, but your reasoning is circular. It basically goes ” A clever man with a good reputation made this judgement therefore it must have been made in accordance with clear legal thinking and nothing else, and it must be a correct decision.” I don’t think that’s a valid arguement at all, not least because his reputation before today doesn’t include the judgement issued today.

In other words, good reputations can be lost.

But I’ll withdraw.. until after noon.

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wottpiPosted on11:58 am - Feb 28, 2013


Clealry fast moving story as snippets come out.

As I discussed yesterday due to the legal niceties I can see where LNS thinks there was no unfair competitive advantage. If they had fessed up at the time the registrations would have in all probability been approved and the players would have taken to the field.

It is because he is focusing in on purely administrative matters as opposed to seeing the big picture that the whole lack of disclosure was an organised and deliberate attempt to bring high value and quality players to the club under the eyes of the footballing and tax authorities because at the end of the day they could not afford them otherwise.

The £250k fine for ten years of improper registration (even if they were ‘errors’) looks very small and not proportional when you consider other fines and sanctions given out over the years.

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justpedylanPosted on11:58 am - Feb 28, 2013


Livia Burlando – you’re dream has 2 minutes of life left until publication

LNS = NCA (no competitive advantage). His fine legal brain no doubt coming up with that one.

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greenockjackPosted on11:58 am - Feb 28, 2013


Nothing nuclear to be revealed, even now ?

There was never anything nuclear to reveal or at least the term “nuclear” was a gross exaggeration and somewhat irresponsibly used.

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csihampdenPosted on12:00 pm - Feb 28, 2013


whisperer18 says:

Thursday, February 28, 2013 at 11:36

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Twas I. I have also said on previous posts that I expected a guilty nverdict, but that a technicality fudge would be utilised to avoid title removal.
I take no pleasure in saying I was wrong altogether – no fudge was needed at all, just a straightforward lesser consequence than should have happened – no reason given, why do people like us need a reason? It seems that those in authority do indeed have the utmost contempt for people like us, and they are probably correct to do so, because we will take it, so we deserve it. Every football fan in this country (outside TRFC) who continues to go to games funding this as if it was a sport deserves the contempt with which they are being treated. Some may find that harsh – too bad, that will remain my opinion. These peoiple who treat you with contempt rely on your emotions ruling your brain. They bank on it, quite literally.

I have occasionally hurt those I love for the greater good. I have sometimes pulled my children away in almost violent fashion from somewhere where they could have gotten more seriously hurt, or to impose morals. I didn’t want to hurt them, but it was for a greater good. I forced my pragmatic brain to rule my emotions.

I will now hurt my club until they dissociate themselves from this corruption of rules. Either publicly in what they say, or in their actions. And I will continue to do so until I see evidence of the effect. For the greater good, I will force my pragmatic brain to rule my emotions. I won’t let those who view me with contempt bank on me any more.

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expectinrainPosted on12:00 pm - Feb 28, 2013


Since no competitive advantage would have been gained in many administrative error cases, e.g. by Spartans’ failure to provide a second signature, it will be interesting to see if the report makes this the basis for punishments excluding changes to results, and thereby sets a precedent for grounds for appeal.

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fishnish

fishnishPosted on12:00 pm - Feb 28, 2013


Araminta Moonbeam QC says:
Thursday, February 28, 2013 at 11:50
Perhaps the only solution is to buy an ST for Spartans/other small clubs who were disproportionately punished for ‘administrative errors’
…………………………………….
Any team but Sparta.
They deserved all the punishment for bureaucratic bungling they could get.

They played St Mirren in the cup a few years back. Saints had a squad packed full of youngsters and put them on the pitch.
Sparta waited until the game had started then pointed out to the referee that St Mirren did not have the requisite number of young players sitting on the bench. Saints were fined £20,000+. (Reduced on appeal to around £15000, IIRC.). A lot of money for a wee diddy team…

Sparta knowingly played by the rules not the intention of the rules, which was to get young Scottish players involved at a higher level.

Sparta have not been punished enough for that.

And, for me, today seems to be full enough of bad news without unaware punters adding to it.

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schottie59Posted on12:02 pm - Feb 28, 2013


High Noon …marshall shot dead in the back ….

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Celtic Paranoia (@CelticParanoia)Posted on12:03 pm - Feb 28, 2013


Senior says:
Thursday, February 28, 2013 at 11:49

What’s the point of the detail if it’s hidden?? That’s exactly the point!

Scottish Football – I’m out. Sorry that Celtic had to suffer but I am going to follow something with more credibility like WWE or a James Bond film with Graham Norton in the 007 role

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SeniorPosted on12:04 pm - Feb 28, 2013


I proposed the following sometime before Christmas.
I believed that, unlike the woolly thinkers, we needed to take action to demonstrate that the paying fans are not to be taken for granted.
Well today my worst fears are possibly about to materialise.

Boycott Weekend

First of all I am an ordinary member of this forum. If anything can be added to the campaign please do not hesitate to shout, indeed if you think the campaign is foolish or misguided please, again, do not hesitate to shout..
There are a few caveats to mention before we set out the strategy of our campaign.
1. When we decide a weekend we must stick religiously (pardon the pun) to this date. There will be many false promises made to derail the weekend of boycott. If, after deciding on the weekend we are distracted there will never be the same opportunity again to mobilise the troops.
2. The weekend we select may not suit, for a variety of reasons, everybody, but we have to make a judgement call, and this is where we will need leadership. I am prepared to make these calls but if any of you have any better suggestion I am more than willing to defer.
There are a least five hundred members of this forum 99% decent ordinary fans. All that will be asked of you is apart from adhering to the boycott is to email all contacts in your address book with the instructions that we will set out. In that email, to your friends, I would ask you to mention to them if they in turn would forward this email to all their contacts etc. I will ask you all also how best to utilise twitter, Facebook etc. Is there a way of a mass circulation of the info on these sites?

Justshatered 16.03
“ I posted some time ago that what is required is a boycott of the press.
Pick a weekend and a specific paper, notify every supporter’s website, supporters associations, and fanzine that we can find and ask them for their support but most importantly let the paper itself know what is coming”
___________________________

As you can see from the above the option of a news(sic)paper boycott will also be called for on the weekend specified. The only issue with the above call is, that we boycott all papers on the same weekend – they are all guilty by their silence in defending the corruption that Scottish football administration has become.
There are people on here who are much more adept at using the computer and have a comprehensive list of supporter’s websites, supporters associations, and fanzine sites. I would appeal to those people to please step forward to help disseminate the info to these sites.
In any event we have the Christmas break to fine-tune this historic campaign.
In conclusion I would ask fellow members to give thumbs up/down if you agree/disagree with the

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Billy BoycePosted on12:04 pm - Feb 28, 2013


Lporn Nimmo Smith Summary

[1] For the reasons which are set out in detail below the Commission has unanimously
decided
:
(1) Between the years 2000 and 2011 The Rangers Football Club Plc (now known as RFC
2012 Plc (in liquidation) and referred to in the decision as “Oldco”), the owner and
operator of Rangers Football Club (“Rangers FC”), entered into side-letter arrangements
with a large number of its professional players under which Oldco undertook to make
very substantial payments to an offshore employee benefit remuneration trust, with the
intent that such payments should be used to fund payments to be made to such players
in the form of loans;

(2) Those side-letter arrangements were required to be disclosed under the Rules of the
Scottish Premier League (“SPL”) and the Scottish Football Association (“SFA”) as
forming part of the players’ financial entitlement and as agreements providing for
payments to be received by the players;

(3) Oldco through its senior management decided that such side-letter arrangements should
not be disclosed to the football authorities, and the Board of Directors sanctioned the
making of payments under the side-letter arrangements without taking any legal or
accountancy advice to justify the non-disclosure;

(4) The relevant SPL Rules were designed to promote sporting integrity, by mitigating the
risk of irregular payments to players;

(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;

(6) Rangers FC did not gain any unfair competitive advantage from the contraventions of
the SPL Rules in failing to make proper disclosure of the side-letter arrangements, nor
did the non-disclosure have the effect that any of the registered players were ineligible
to play, and for this and other reasons no sporting sanction or penalty should be
imposed upon Rangers FC;

(7) As noted in the Commission’s earlier decision made on 12 September 2012 there is no
allegation that the current owner and operator of the club, The Rangers Football Club
Limited (“Newco”), contravened the SPL Rules or could be held responsible for any
breach by Oldco;

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Tartawulver

TartawulverPosted on12:05 pm - Feb 28, 2013


any link to the result?

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Not The Huddle MalcontentPosted on12:05 pm - Feb 28, 2013


http://www.scotprem.com/content/mediaassets/doc/Commission%20Decision%2028%2002%202013.pdf

full verdict

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aramintamoobeamqcPosted on12:09 pm - Feb 28, 2013


Players not ineligible. *opens tin of whitewash*

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justpedylanPosted on12:09 pm - Feb 28, 2013


(7) As noted in the Commission’s earlier decision made on 12 September 2012 there is no
allegation that the current owner and operator of the club, The Rangers Football Club
Limited (“Newco”), contravened the SPL Rules or could be held responsible for any
breach by Oldco;

But bl**dy Ogilvie could be held responsible.

Resign, you compromised grubby little man.

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wottpiPosted on12:09 pm - Feb 28, 2013


Presumably Neil Lennon is currenlty on the phone to Messi, Ronaldo etc to get them to turn out against Juve in the return match.

When questioned how they managed to take to the field in Hooped shirts he can say it was just an adminiistrative error.

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Celtic Paranoia (@CelticParanoia)Posted on12:10 pm - Feb 28, 2013


Senior says:
Thursday, February 28, 2013 at 11:49

What’s the point in the detail if it’s hidden??? That’s exactly the problem!

Scottish Football – I’m out. Sorry that Celtic will suffer but it’s all a sham. I’m away to follow something with more credibility like WWE wrestling or a James Bond film with Graham Norton in the lead role.

What competitive advantage did Spartans or Dumfermline gain? A helluva lot less than Rangers.

The argument from Rangers fans all along has in essence been ‘we’re too big and important to be punished and you’ll all go bust without us’.

And they were right, except we are all going bust with them

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briggsbhoyPosted on12:12 pm - Feb 28, 2013


good comment I felt from BBC website
Anonymous: “With senior football now apparently “dead in Scotland” all SPL grounds will be totally empty at the weekend? Oh wait they usually are anyway! It’s not Gers killing Scottish football, it’s Scottish football’s obsession with Gers that’s killing it!”

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expectinrainPosted on12:13 pm - Feb 28, 2013


On Ogilvie – last sentence seems to sum up panel’s view.

[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.

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scapaflow14

scapaflow14Posted on12:14 pm - Feb 28, 2013


“[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
14
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.”

Ouch

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cmontheshirePosted on12:15 pm - Feb 28, 2013


And should HMRC prevail in the UTT? Might make an nonsense of the supposed ‘administrative error’ tack taken by the LNS enquiry.

I know it is not allowed but I no longer care about moderator controls on this issue. Seems to me that the establishment north and south of the border are more in need of ‘500 million’ Unionist votes next year, rather than have honesty and integrity flourish in this country.
Damping down waves into mere millpond ripples through fudge and obfuscation while sitting on the fence and doing nothing is how all establishments endure. Quelle surprise!

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aramintamoobeamqcPosted on12:16 pm - Feb 28, 2013


Ogilvie has held on for this long, I can’t see him quitting now. Despite it being laid out in black and white. As I said, utterly corrupt, grubby.

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scapaflow14

scapaflow14Posted on12:16 pm - Feb 28, 2013


I think the UTT may find Lord Nimmo’s report of great interest

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Livia BurlandoPosted on12:17 pm - Feb 28, 2013


2) Those side-letter arrangements were required to be disclosed under the Rules of the
Scottish Premier League (“SPL”) and the Scottish Football Association (“SFA”) as
forming part of the players’ financial entitlement and as agreements providing for
payments to be received by the players

But

non-disclosure [did not] have the effect that any of the registered players were ineligible
to play
………………………………………………………………………
How did he get from statement 1 to statement 2?

He should just have said:

“Those side-letter arrangements were required to be disclosed under the Rules of the
Scottish Premier League (“SPL”) and the Scottish Football Association (“SFA”) as
forming part of the players’ financial entitlement and as agreements providing for
payments to be received by the players

but I’ve decided it doesn’t really matter that they weren’t”

Must be my lack of a fine legal mind.

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Parson St. BhoyPosted on12:17 pm - Feb 28, 2013


Brenda says:
Thursday, February 28, 2013 at 11:29

LNS ? Such a let down to your profession.
“”””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””
You jest. This exactly why these Eton,Fettes and Oxbridge educated ermine clad cliques sit where they do.
Read the UN rapporteurs opinion on the Lockerbie trial.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abdelbaset_al-Megrahi
Several legal experts as well as the UN observer at the Lockerbie trial have vehemently challenged the verdict that convicted Megrahi,[3] while Ulrich Lumpert, the Mebo AG engineer who testified to the validity of a key piece of evidence, admitted in an affidavit to lying in court and stealing the object from his employer, after which he gave it to one of the crime investigators.[4]

A trawl through the following websites may change your opinion of the legal system in this country.
http://petercherbi.blogspot.co.uk/
http://scottishlaw.blogspot.co.uk/
http://lockerbiecase.blogspot.co.uk/ This by Prof.Robert Black. Hardly a Divid Icke figure.

Robert Black QC FRSE became Professor of Scots Law in the University of Edinburgh in January 1981, having previously been in practice at the Scottish Bar. He is now Professor Emeritus. He has been an Advocate since 1972 and a QC since 1987. From 1981 to 1994 he served as a temporary sheriff (judge).

http://thessoe.blogspot.co.uk/
Nimmo-Smith, William Austin (Law Lord, Lord Nimmo-Smith, Co-author Smith-Friel ‘magic circle’ report, covering up rent-boys for Judges and Fiscals scandal in Edinburgh. Hatchet-man against any Skye bridge appeals. Sat on Lockerbie appeal bench.) [SBT][LOCK]

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expectinrainPosted on12:18 pm - Feb 28, 2013


scapaflow14 says:
Thursday, February 28, 2013 at 12:16

Quite. (And above, great minds/fools etc.)

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Long Time Lurker

Long Time LurkerPosted on12:20 pm - Feb 28, 2013


Does para 107 of the LNS report condem CO?

[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 sideletters
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.

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Charlie BrownPosted on12:22 pm - Feb 28, 2013


Like the initial FTT result this fudge is simply baffling and morally wrong. Every human being with an ounce of integrity knows judgement is simply wrong and no justice has been served by Lord Nimmo-Smith.

A disgrace it really is.

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bawsbustedanathaPosted on12:23 pm - Feb 28, 2013


I hope PL is reading this.
My season book is 19 years old.
My son’s season book is 10 years old.
Unless my club takes a stance on this they will not get any older.

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Long Time Lurker

Long Time LurkerPosted on12:26 pm - Feb 28, 2013


Para 109

[109] It is the board of directors of Oldco as a company, as distinct from the football management or players of Rangers FC as a club, which appears to us to bear the responsibility for the breaches of the relevant rules. All the breaches which we have found were therefore clearly committed by Oldco. We see no room or need for separate findings of breaches by Rangers FC, which was not a separate legal entity and was then part (although clearly in football and financial terms the key part) of the undertaking of Oldco. Rangers FC is of course now owned and operated by Newco, which bears no responsibility for the matters with which we are concerned. For the reasons already given, we have decided against the imposition of a sporting sanction. In these circumstances the financial penalty lies only upon Oldco and does not affect Rangers FC as a football club under its new ownership.

Does not look good for CO – responsibility as a director for breaching the rules.

Is LNS saying here that RFC died with the Oldco?

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scapaflow14

scapaflow14Posted on12:28 pm - Feb 28, 2013


“Mr McKenzie explained to us that SPL Rule D1.13 had hitherto been understood to mean
that if, at the time of registration, a document was not lodged as required, the consequence was
that a condition of registration was broken and the player automatically became ineligible to play
in terms of SPL Rule D1.11. He accepted however that there was scope for a different
construction of the rule, to the effect that, as the lodging of the document in question was a
condition of registration, the registration of the player would be liable to revocation, with the
consequence that the player would thereafter become ineligible to play. He accepted that no
provision of the Rules enabled the Board of the SPL retrospectively to terminate the registration
of the player. It became apparent from his submissions that Mr McKenzie was not pressing for a
finding that Issue 3(c), together with the concluding words of Issue 3(b), had been proved.
[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.
27
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.
[89] For these reasons we are not satisfied that any breach of the Rules has been established in
terms of Issue 3(c), taken in conjunction with the concluding words of Issue 3(b) quoted above.
This is an important finding, as it means that there was no instance shown of Rangers FC
fielding an ineligible player.”

looks like Lord Nimmo is saying that the SFA and SPL should be in synch, with the SFA rules as paramount. Hard to argue with that, it may be that the SFA rules have let Rangers off the hook

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SeniorPosted on12:29 pm - Feb 28, 2013


Judge ” I see Senior you have no tax on your car” Senior ” sorry your honour me but it was an administrative error.” Judge ” ah, sure it could happen to anyone, case dismissed, off you go”

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SmugasPosted on12:29 pm - Feb 28, 2013


I’m reminded of the joke where the manager leaves the team to train around cones. He later asks the coach how the team got on. We got beat 3-0 he says. Well apparently the cones didn’t turn up for ten years and the players were left to play about amongst themselves. The result? 3-0 to the Rangers every game apparently!

And with that, I’m out.

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Danish PastryPosted on12:29 pm - Feb 28, 2013


Livia Burlando says:
Thursday, February 28, 2013 at 11:25
12 0 Rate This

Anyone still think Lord Nimmo Smith is an upstanding judge who would never be allow his fine legal judgement to be sullied?
———–

Abdelbaset al-Megrahi probably didn’t.

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