It Takes Two to Tangle

ByTrisidium

It Takes Two to Tangle

 Guest Blog by Auldheid

When helping write up the previous blog on the matter of the (mis) commissioning by Harper Macleod, lawyers to the then SPL and current SPFL, of the Lord Nimmo Smith’s investigation into side letters arising from EBTs issued by Rangers FC from July 1999 (http://archive.sfm.scot/an-honest-game-convince-us/ ) .

I had it in mind that only the SFA had something to hide as a result of their President Campbell Ogilvie being fully aware of the history and distinction between the two illegal Rangers Employee Benefit Trust (REBT ) ebts of wee tax case fame not declared to Harper Macleod and the more widely known Murray Group Management Remuneration Trust (MGMRT) Big Tax Case ebts which were declared and on which LNS focussed after (wrongly)treating both types as regular.

The idea that I think most bought into in terms of the registration matters LNS investigated was that no one in football except players with side letters had participated in those schemes and that football authority, both SFA and SPL were unaware of them until their existence became public in Feb 2012. This is when the Sun first published a side letter and the possibility of mis-registration was raised, notably on Celtic Quick News then more widely particularly following an interview between Alex Thomson of Ch4 News and Hugh Adam an ex Rangers Director.

However when you think of the world of Scottish football where players socialise with each other and with journalists, then it does seem stretching it a bit to think that no one in football authority ever heard any gossip or had any enquiry and decided not to investigate the matter before 2012.

Well Rangers Administrators Duff and Phelps thought so and their lawyers Biggart Bailie asked Harper Mcleod in March 2012 why the SPL had not investigated a lot earlier on the basis that

  1. There had been entries every year since 2000 in Rangers Annual Accounts of sums of money being placed in employee benefit trusts
  2. HMRC had written to the SPL at some unknown point in the past to ask about the existence of side letters in players’ contracts.

The first argument on annual accounts was one made once public awareness of ebts widened but it was dismissed on the grounds that no one knew much about ebts in those early years and in any case properly administered ones, which they would have been presumed to have been, did not have side letters.

However it does seem likely that having written to MIH/Rangers in 2005 to enquire about the existence of side letters to De Boer and Flo (which MIH/Rangers denied holding even though they did) HMRC would have written to the SFA or SPL sometime after 2005 whenever they first became aware of side letters in players contracts with regards to the MGRT ebts of Big Tax Case fame..

That the SPL had been contacted two or three years previous to 2012 by HMRC was confirmed at a SPL Board meeting in March 2012 as a result of a question being asked by Celtic, who were unaware in 2012 that such an HMRC enquiry had been made in 2009 or 2010.  It is possible of course that the connection to misregistration was not made then by the SPL executive asked, but had it been history could have been so different.

How that HMRC enquiry and what it contained was handled by the SPL executive perhaps explains not only why the SPL were so keen to take the lead on the investigation but why they were unaware of the different types of ebts at play, the enquiry in 2009/2010 presumably relating only to the MGMRT type.

The motivation of the SPL executive can be read into their advice to the SPL Board on 23rd February 2012 to instruct an immediate inspection and investigation of the financial records of Rangers with respect to the ebt payments under SPL Rule F1 and under Section G of the Rules on the basis that such an inspection and investigation might reveal prima facie evidence of a breach of SPL Rules independently of any Administrator decision or the outcome of the FTT.

The SPL Board were further advised that taking the lead on such grounds would also go some way to forestalling any attempt by the SFA to include any dependency on the outcome of either Rangers Administration (which they entered on 14th February) or the result of the FTT, (which came in November 2012.)

The desire and benefits of delinking what was at heart a registration enquiry   from the much more serious use of tax evasion methods to pay players was obviously not lost on those giving the advice.

In fact in directing LNS in the way the SPL did (possibly unaware that tax evasion had already occurred with Flo and De Boer) it avoided focus on the real and still unresolved issue, were players paid by unfair means from 1999 from which sporting advantage would naturally accrue with no need for proof that it had. You cannot say this had not been thought through in the advice given.

It was also the SPL’ stance that matters concerning player payments had traditionally been considered to be for leagues.

The narrative emerging here is one of the two football authorities keeping from public gaze what individuals in both, if not the whole organisations corporately, knew about the history of ebts; the SFA knowing the history of both types from 1999/2000 onwards and the SPL possibly only knowing something of the MGMRT ebts and side letters from 2009/10 as a result of HMRC asking them questions.

Thus it suited the SFA that the SPL take the lead as much as it suited the SPL to do so but for different reasons. The SFA to keep the existence of the wee tax case ebts hidden from public view and LNS scrutiny and the SPL to avoid answering any “when did they know and why did they not act” questions.

Also if the SPL were indeed unaware of the two distinct types of ebts at play (and they may indeed have been), it explains why they never picked up that the earlier illegal ebts were missed/concealed from them by Rangers Administrators.

Perhaps the SPL and SFA were aware of the benefits to them of focusing only on the registration aspect. This could be presented as an administrative error (which LNS basically decided) rather than the possible illegal nature of the big tax case ebts after the FTT (and which might still arise from the UTT) which would present both with much more difficult and unwelcome consequences to manage and certainly would have changed the nature of the investigation from the outset had the full evidence been provided.

However unless the questions put to the SPFL in the previous blog are answered, we will never know who did what and why, but we at least will know that the LNS Investigation and its findings were a sham from the outset and should be set aside.

 

Perhaps BDO who are investigating the role and behaviour of Duff and Phelps according to the latest report on their work should be asking Duff and Phelps about the circumstances surrounding the concealment of vital evidence from the LNS Commission?

Och why not?

To the BDO partner investigating. Dated 9th June by web site e mail

“ I see that BDO are carrying out a probe into the conduct of administrators Duff & Phelps. Does that cover the failure to supply SPL with full documentation requested to investigate side letters in 2012?

See http://www.tsfm.net/an-honest-game-convince-us/ for background. Missing evidence is available. ”

PS: I did try to ascertain if HMRC did indeed write to the SPL and when, but they were unable to confirm or deny that they had. The enquiry and response follow. The question on who is responsible for HMRC policy in respect of collection of tax from football clubs was not given but probably due more to an oversight than any attempt to stop the question being answered.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

About the author

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.

1,247 Comments so far

ShooperbPosted on12:42 pm - Jun 25, 2014


tomtom says:

June 25, 2014 at 11:31 am

Tomtom, I admire your idealism, but I think we both know that is not going to happen. For starters, Uruguay will just think that they’ve been clever to lever an advantage in this manner. It happens all the time. It’s to do with the mindset down that way.

I’m generalising, but South American teams will say that they used their intelligence to gain an advantage, whereas we would simply call them a bunch of cheating bassas! To their mind, it’s by any means necessary, and it’s only outside the laws of the game if the referee sees it and blows his whistle.

You only have to look back to Rivaldo apparently getting decked at the corner flag by a pass to the shin from a Turkish player, or Maradonna quite happily punching the ball into the net against England. They simply cant understand why it’s not enough to be the winners, they think we’re silly in that we have to be seen to be the winners as well.

Besides, for all the talk of 2 year bans and such like, I’d be VERY surprised if there was any substantive action taken against him. Quite simply, there’s too many people with too much money to lose were he to be properly punished, so you can bet it’ll be the equivalent of a slap on the wrists, or even better, Fifa will claim the footage is inconclusive or something along those lines.

View Comment

futbolPosted on12:51 pm - Jun 25, 2014


You only have to look back to Rivaldo apparently getting decked at the corner flag by a pass to the shin from a Turkish player …

Forever, the most abhorrent thing I have ever seen on a football pitch. I consider that worse than Suarez’s antics (though in the same league as his teammate who has stated that “nothing happened”).

The fact that the Celtic even considered employing this embarrassment of a man is a slight on the club.

View Comment

AllyjamboPosted on1:01 pm - Jun 25, 2014


tomtom says:
June 25, 2014 at 11:31 am

While a disgusting thing for anyone to do, and thoroughly deserving of a red card, Suarez biting an opponent could hardly affect the result at all, and certainly a lot less than some reckless tackle might have if it resulted in an opponent’s injury. Not getting sent off, of course, does distort the result, but that is the same in every case of a missed red card. Suarez might well be deserving of the most serious penalty ever handed out, but Uruguay are no more complicit than any other club, or national side, in what happened, or it’s aftermath.

I’d imagine the loss of Suarez, should he receive a fitting punishment, would be enough sack cloth and ashes for Uruguay; and Italy can look back on their many indiscretions, that went unpunished, over many years, for solace (as can many sides).

View Comment

neepheidPosted on1:13 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Shooperb says:
June 25, 2014 at 12:42 pm

You only have to look back to Rivaldo apparently getting decked at the corner flag by a pass to the shin from a Turkish player, or Maradonna quite happily punching the ball into the net against England. They simply cant understand why it’s not enough to be the winners, they think we’re silly in that we have to be seen to be the winners as well.

I am not comfortable with any of this sort of stuff. I’m unhappy with reference on a Scottish football forum to Maradonna’s goal against England. How about Joe Jordan’s “hand of God” against Wales in 1978? Are we to be ashamed of being Scots as a consequence? I wasn’t complaining at the time, and neither was anyone else who wasn’t Welsh.

As for England being hard done by, how about the 66 debacle? Was that fair, or honourable? I was 17 at the time, and thought it was a fix then. I’ve never changed my mind on that one.

The evidence is out there for cheating from any country you like to name. So please let’s not generalise.

View Comment

mcfcPosted on1:23 pm - Jun 25, 2014


I have very low expectations of FIFA. I imagine they will ban (suspend) him from the rest of the competition (possibly only one game) subject to “further investigations” then deal with the matter later – when things have calmed down and they can fudge the issue. But they do run the risk of attracting even more public and media attention on corruption – so they need to thread carefully.

The real punishment will be damage to his club career. John Henry is said to have dumped Dalgleish over his handling of the Suarez racism mess – bad for the brand. JH will be looking to minimize this latest brand damage. Nothing rash, but expect to see a replacement sourced this summer and Suarez slip from the public eye before a make-weight move to a sub-prime club to hide the reduced value of his damaged goods status..

SO Suarez should expect no soft handing from John Henry

he may get a

View Comment

scottcPosted on1:23 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Re Suarez: I would not be surprised if any decision on ‘action’ was held over until after the tournament. Just like in F1 when they decide that a decision will be made ‘after the race’.

View Comment

MoreCelticParanoiaPosted on1:35 pm - Jun 25, 2014


futbol says:
June 25, 2014 at 12:51 pm
2 5 i
Rate This

You only have to look back to Rivaldo apparently getting decked at the corner flag by a pass to the shin from a Turkish player …

Forever, the most abhorrent thing I have ever seen on a football pitch. I consider that worse than Suarez’s antics (though in the same league as his teammate who has stated that “nothing happened”).

The fact that the Celtic even considered employing this embarrassment of a man is a slight on the club.
_________________________________________________________________________

How do you know Celtic considered employing him?

Read it in from a succulent lamb hack?

Heard it from a taxi driver?

View Comment

JoeJordansHandPosted on1:43 pm - Jun 25, 2014


neepheid says:
June 25, 2014 at 1:13 pm

How about Joe Jordan’s “hand of God” against Wales in 1978?

Personally, I loved it – but then I would say that. :mrgreen:

View Comment

MoreCelticParanoiaPosted on1:50 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Shooperb says:
June 25, 2014 at 12:42 pm
Quite simply, there’s too many people with too much money to lose were he to be properly punished, so you can bet it’ll be the equivalent of a slap on the wrists, or even better, Fifa will claim the footage is inconclusive or something along those lines.
__________________________________________________________________

The footage IS inconclusive… in a legal coutroom sense. You know he bit Chiellini, I know he bit Chiellini, everyone knows he bit Chiellini but the footage does not show his teeth actually sinking into the Italian’s shoulder. This is where highly paid legal counsel can make a mockery of the law with semantic argument as we have seen with the FTTT.

It’s therefore encouraging to hear FIFA are investigating the “medical evidence” so appear to be alive to this sort of legal challenge. I hope I am not being niave.

Finding him guilty is one thing, the punishment another. Linker said that Song of Cameroon got 3 games for his elbow against Croatia so you’d have to think at least an equivalent ban but who knows what they will come up with.

In 1984 Celtic were ordered to replay Rapid Vienna and play the home leg of their first tie in next season’s competition behind closed doors after a very dubious claim from Rapid that one of their players had been struck by a coin. A bottle was also seen to have been thrown on the pitch and hit no-one.

In 1985 Giussepe Bergomi of Inter Milan was struck by a flare thrown from the crowd in a UEFA Cup semi final tie won by Real Madrid at the Bernabeu. No action was taken by UEFA.

One rule for the big boys etc.

View Comment

MoreCelticParanoiaPosted on1:54 pm - Jun 25, 2014


neepheid says:
June 25, 2014

Did Joe Jordan challenge for the ball thinking “what I’ll do here is hit the ball with my hand because I know my marker is guaranteed to raise his arm in the same way and then in the confusion the referee will give us a penalty”?

I very much doubt it so it’s not a valid comparison with Maradona’s completely cynical actions

View Comment

smartie1947Posted on1:57 pm - Jun 25, 2014


mcfc says:

June 25, 2014 at 10:17 am

6

6

Rate This

Reality Check

Rangers ready to roll into Buckie
TICKETS are selling well for Buckie Thistle’s big clash with Rangers.
Over 1,000 briefs have already been sold for the friendly match with Ally McCoist’s men next Thursday, July 3.
http://www.northern-scot.co.uk/Sport/Football/Rangers-ready-to-roll-into-Buckie-24062014.htm

=======================================================

Never has a friendly been played where the name of the home team seems more appropriate for the majority of the away team’s support. !

View Comment

AllyjamboPosted on2:01 pm - Jun 25, 2014


MoreCelticParanoia says:
June 25, 2014 at 1:50 pm

‘One rule for the big boys etc.’
___________________________________

And it will forever be so. Strangely, in the weird world of FIFA, twice world champions, Uruguay, are unlikely to be considered ‘big boys’. Something, I think, to do with their rather small population continually failing to collect enough, in a whip round, to fill a large brown envelope!

View Comment

futbolPosted on2:03 pm - Jun 25, 2014


MoreCelticParanoia says:
June 25, 2014 at 1:35 pm

How do you know Celtic considered employing him?

Read it in from a succulent lamb hack?

Heard it from a taxi driver?

That is a fair point – it was covered in the media extensively at the time and as I’ll assume you are not Martin O’Neill logging in from Brazil, neither of us will actually “know”.

A quick google and the player is directly quoted (no retraction I can see) in a Guardian article. Similarly, quotes from O’Neill (with no corrections or retractions). On that basis I would say I lean more towards there being some truth in the matter than not.

I couldn’t accept the club going down that route given my outrage at the time of the WC incident. Would you want someone like that to play for your club? Someone who not only cheats in that way but thinks it ok!?

View Comment

bluPosted on2:23 pm - Jun 25, 2014


MoreCelticParanoia says:
June 25, 2014 at 1:54 pm
neepheid says:
June 25, 2014

Did Joe Jordan challenge for the ball thinking “what I’ll do here is hit the ball with my hand because I know my marker is guaranteed to raise his arm in the same way and then in the confusion the referee will give us a penalty”?

I very much doubt it so it’s not a valid comparison with Maradona’s completely cynical actions

I’m with Neepheid on this and would guess that Joe, Luis and Diego all had exactly the same thought process gong into the respective incidents, “I want to win.” I have to admit to cheering at two of those incidents and I’m certain I would have cheered the third if I was Uruguayan – it doesn’t make it OK though. Some (most?) of us seem to be capable of suspending our normal standards of morality when it comes to football. This has been a strong theme of this blog in respect of the Rangers’ fans denial of wrongdoing by their club and the need for seamless continuity of identity. They knew, or should have, that the club was corrupt, just as Hearts, Gretna, Dundee and Dunfermline fans knew that the financial operations of their clubs stank. It seems a bit rich for people in the land of the Sun newspaper, Bullingdon Boy Cameron, Tony Blair and Sir David Murray to lay claim to higher moral values than the people of any other country.

View Comment

Madbhoy24941Posted on2:37 pm - Jun 25, 2014


futbol says:

June 25, 2014 at 2:03 pm
————————————————–

Are you are quoting an article 10 years old before the player had the reputation he has now?

And because the Celtic person mentioned did not ask for a retraction that makes it true?

How many players have Celtic been linked with already this season? I can name at least 8. How many more will claim an interest in the coming weeks and how many will they actually buy?

Oh dear!

View Comment

MoreCelticParanoiaPosted on2:46 pm - Jun 25, 2014


blu says:
neepheid says:
June 25, 2014

I’m with Neepheid on this and would guess that Joe, Luis and Diego all had exactly the same thought process gong into the respective incidents, “I want to win.” I have to admit to cheering at two of those incidents and I’m certain I would have cheered the third if I was Uruguayan – it doesn’t make it OK though.
—————————————————————————————————
The point I was making was about pre-meditation, I don’t for a second think Joe Jordan set out to win a penalty with his actions whereby Diego Maradon knew exactly what he was trying to do. The more I reflect on it, the less robust this distinction becomes as presumably Jordan was trying to gain SOME kind of advantage from using his hand even if just to flick the ball on to a team-mate or whatever. My intention was not to exonerate him as morally, he should have pointed out to the referee his mistake, which – like 99% of people in his position – he failed to do. Not that his team-mates, or indeed the nation, would have thanked him.

Of course the ideal is to have the same moral standards for yourself as you hold others to. This is what sickens me about the moral pomposity of the English commentators and pundits at this World Cup, in particularl when Adrian Chiles, a talking head nobody from Birmingham, shouted down two ex-professionals with two World Cup and one European Championship winners medals between them, denouncing Mueller of Germany as a “cheat”. These are the same people who were applauding the “professionalism” of Michael Owen in manufacturing two penalties at two separate World Cups against Argentina. Still in 1998 Simeone of Argentina dived to get Beckham sent off so let’s fixate on that instead.

View Comment

MoreCelticParanoiaPosted on2:54 pm - Jun 25, 2014


futbol says:
June 25, 2014 at 2:03 pm
2 0 i
Rate This

MoreCelticParanoia says:
June 25, 2014 at 1:35 pm

How do you know Celtic considered employing him?

Read it in from a succulent lamb hack?

Heard it from a taxi driver?

That is a fair point – it was covered in the media extensively at the time and as I’ll assume you are not Martin O’Neill logging in from Brazil, neither of us will actually “know”.

A quick google and the player is directly quoted (no retraction I can see) in a Guardian article. Similarly, quotes from O’Neill (with no corrections or retractions). On that basis I would say I lean more towards there being some truth in the matter than not.

I couldn’t accept the club going down that route given my outrage at the time of the WC incident. Would you want someone like that to play for your club? Someone who not only cheats in that way but thinks it ok!?
__________________________________________________________

I do remember gossip about this at the time.

Agents tend to do this kind of kite flying to hock their clients around clubs and create awareness among clubs that the player is available. Hacks like it as it is hot air with which to inflate and help sell their rags and so a momentum of noxious gas builds.

Martin O’Neill – as many managers do – tended to field media gossip in a non-committal way, except ironically concerning speculation about his own future which he always inequivocally rejected but which never managed to quell same speculation.

But in any case – you are effectively accusing Celtic of thought crime which is really pushing the edge of credibility. Celtic are a disgrace for thinking about signing a player they then – allegedly – decided not to sign? Really??

View Comment

James DolemanPosted on2:55 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Para Handy says:
June 25, 2014 at 11:17 am
17 0 Rate This

Given the issues many on here have with the SMSM, I am surprised that no comment has been passed on the outcome of the phone hacking trial.”

Given the active legal proceedings in Scotland and the expectation of a trial in the near futire I think that would be sensible

View Comment

Galling fiverPosted on3:03 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Play to your strengths, and that boy could eat corn on the cob through a Venetian blind.

View Comment

mcfcPosted on3:35 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Three Strikes

Liverpool owner John Henry is also a baseball club owner and may well follow the maxim: three strikes and you’re out.

Bite (Ajax), Bite (Liverpool), Bite (Uruguay) and you’re out amigo

Not forgetting a splash of racism along the way.

View Comment

futbolPosted on3:50 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Madbhoy24941 says:
June 25, 2014 at 2:37 pm

The actions of Rivaldo referred to earlier happened at the WC in 2002. Assuming we view time as a linear concept, an attempted signing in 2004 comes after that.

I’m not sure what point you’re trying to make here other than to diffuse the original point with a straw man. With regards to who Celtic are aiming to sign I don’t see the connection at all. The point I was making was that I was disappointed in what appeared to be my team’s desire to sign someone like this.

MoreCelticParanoia says:
June 25, 2014 at 2:54 pm

I should have chosen my words more carefully re the “slight on the club”. I am not accusing anyone of thoughtcrime, merely going with the information available and expressing my distaste for *what appeared to be* the intent to sign a veritable cheat. At no point did anyone say “we don’t want players of his ilk here”. That disappointed me and I felt courting (or not denying courting!) the player was out of kilter with my view of the values within the club. Perhaps they did say that, internally but chose not to state it publicly, I don’t know.

View Comment

Para HandyPosted on3:51 pm - Jun 25, 2014


James Doleman says:
June 25, 2014 at 2:55 pm
3 1 Rate This

Para Handy says:
June 25, 2014 at 11:17 am
17 0 Rate This

Given the issues many on here have with the SMSM, I am surprised that no comment has been passed on the outcome of the phone hacking trial.”

Given the active legal proceedings in Scotland and the expectation of a trial in the near futire I think that would be sensible
———————————–
Why so, James? The judgement has been made and is now in the public domain?

View Comment

upthehoopsPosted on4:44 pm - Jun 25, 2014


neepheid says:
June 25, 2014 at 1:13 pm

I am not comfortable with any of this sort of stuff. I’m unhappy with reference on a Scottish football forum to Maradonna’s goal against England. How about Joe Jordan’s “hand of God” against Wales in 1978? Are we to be ashamed of being Scots as a consequence? I wasn’t complaining at the time, and neither was anyone else who wasn’t Welsh.

As for England being hard done by, how about the 66 debacle? Was that fair, or honourable? I was 17 at the time, and thought it was a fix then. I’ve never changed my mind on that one.

The evidence is out there for cheating from any country you like to name. So please let’s not generalise.
===================================

The blog is not political but we all know the current political debate that is ongoing. Part of that debate occasionally involves hints from some people that Scots are of higher moral fibre than others – nonsense if you ask me, and I’m a Scot. There is a good and bad cross section everywhere in my opinion.

As for England in 1966, I have no idea if it was a fix, but here are three indisputable facts.

1. England played every game at Wembley when the rules did not allow for that.

2. The third goal did not cross the line (we can allow for ‘honest mistakes’)

3. The Referee and Linesmen failed in their duty to stop the game prior to the 4th goal being scored, as spectators had entered the field of play.

View Comment

paulsatimPosted on4:47 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Para Handy says:
June 25, 2014 at 3:51 pm
0 0 Rate This

James Doleman says:
June 25, 2014 at 2:55 pm
============================

Maybe James referring to another FTT/LNS/NFL attacker getting off type scenario probably can expect more of the same?

View Comment

ShooperbPosted on5:26 pm - Jun 25, 2014


neepheid says:

June 25, 2014 at 1:13 pm

I didn’t claim that Jordan didn’t cheat, as much as I didn’t exonerate John Collins for his first rate save on the line against Holland at Euro ’96. I accept that these things happen in the game, and no country has a monopoly over them, but my point was the acceptance of it, and the lack of embarrassment.

View Comment

mcfcPosted on5:37 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Onerous Training

Good to see The Rangers are making good PR use of their £45,000 per day, every day, onerous training facility,

Squad’s In Good Shape Rangers FC – Official Site 17:09
A look inside Rangers first day of training: the BLEEP test Rangers Report (Weblog) 17:03
Gallery: Fitness Testing Rangers FC – Official Site 16:58

http://www.newsnow.co.uk/h/Sport/Football/Scottish+Championship/Rangers

View Comment

John ClarkPosted on5:39 pm - Jun 25, 2014


tomtom says:
June 25, 2014 at 11:31 am
‘. By doing this Uruguay would be sending out a message to the rest of the world that cheating and disgraceful behaviour have no part in the game. It could be just the game changing moment that the game needs. It would also put pressure on FIFA to get them to clean up their act. .’
————
Let’s clean up locally first, though.
I’d prefer to see a certain knight of the realm admit publicly that a coldy calculated, contemptuous programme of cheating was carried out by him for many years, betraying every principle of honest sporting endeavour and wrongfully depriving more honourable and honest competitors of their just rewards, sporting and/or financial.
The damage done to ‘sport’ by an excitable , if contemptible, thug of a football player is as nothing to the damage done by deeply corrupt hubristic ‘businessmen.’

And that damage is as nothing compared to the damage done by the ‘Sporting’ Authorities by their failure both to prevent the cheating, investigate it honestly and comprehensively, and punish it in the appropriate way: by the stripping of all and any titles and honours dishonourably and fraudulently ‘won’.

And THAT damage pales into insignificance against the twisted, distorted, unpardonable refusal by the SMSM to investigate it, but rather pretend that it did not happen, thus contributing to the maintenance of a culture of secrecy and corruption in our society.
We have our basic Coulson types here: journalists who are a disgrace to their profession.
A little clearing out of the muck and filth in our own football corridors and sports desks would, in my opinion, be necessary before we tackle Uruguay or world Football.

View Comment

FinlochPosted on5:43 pm - Jun 25, 2014


A couple of times in the past I’ve said I thought Rod Petrie was a decent man after what Hibs and the Hibs family did when a Hibs youngster was tragically taken from us.
I’ve also said here that I like dealing with honest people and that a handshake in a deal is more important than the small print.
Well I have a wee story that shows a “running scared” Rod Petrie just allowed his new hiring to reneague on a hand shaken deal .
One young Hibbee starlet came back from the sun to fund that Ms Dempster had removed him from the overhead.
So he has no club and no enormous nine or ten grand a year contract.
A year!
And after being with them for ten years.
Ms Dempster – there is an old saying about babies and bath water that might one day come to haunt you and your boss.
Mr Petrie – your world has to change but don’t cheat your people. Especially the kids.

View Comment

mcfcPosted on5:52 pm - Jun 25, 2014


The reported reaction of the Uruguay team, officials and press to Bite-Gate III seems very familiar: deny, deny, deny, deflect, defuse, point at haters, “move on nothing to see here”.

Luis Suarez ‘bite’ controversy: Disbelief & denial at World Cup
http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/28010944

View Comment

mcfcPosted on6:10 pm - Jun 25, 2014


17,566,000

That’s how many euros UEFA are sending Celtic FC for the 2013/14 season.

That’s enough to fund an onerously expensive training facility for a year – if they can’t think of anything more useful to do with it – I know of one for sale.

http://www.uefa.com/MultimediaFiles/Download/OfficialDocument/uefaorg/Finance/02/11/95/44/2119544_DOWNLOAD.pdf

View Comment

Madbhoy24941Posted on6:33 pm - Jun 25, 2014


futbol says:
June 25, 2014 at 3:50 pm

Madbhoy24941 says:
June 25, 2014 at 2:37 pm

I’m not sure what point you’re trying to make here…

———————————

You know exactly the point I was making so please don’t bring me down to the same level, I never act stupid when I am clearly not!

For clarity: You took an incident of a player from another continent, who plays in a league in another country, playing in an international tournament and somehow managed to link it to Celtic in a negative way. That’s what some parts of our media does on a regular basis, take a point and “search” for something that could paint Celtic in a bad light.

Quite why a Celtic supporter would do that is way beyond my logical thought process.

That’s my point!

View Comment

AuldheidPosted on7:20 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Allyjambo says:
June 25, 2014 at 12:19 pm

Now that is what I call timing because I went back over The Scottish Premier League: Notice of Commission which is an Annex to The (LNS) Decision and this is how I think it was all done and dusted.

In the SPL Statement at http://spfl.co.uk/news/article/spl-statement-2012-03-05/

The Notes say:
SPL rules F1, G1.1 and G1.5 give the SPL Board wide powers of investigation into potential breaches of the SPL rules.

SPL rules D9.3 and D1.13 impose a prohibition on players receiving payments for playing football or participating in an activity connected with football except where such payments are made in accordance with a form of contract approved by the SPL and require that all such contracts are submitted to the SPL within 14 days of being entered into.

In fact SPL Rules D9.3 say:
“No Player may receive any payment of any description from or on behalf of a Club in
respect of that Player’s participation in Association Football or any activity within
Association Football, other than in reimbursement of expenses actually incurred or to be
actually incurred in playing or training for that Club, unless such payment is made in
accordance with a Contract of Service between that Club and the Player concerned.” (from May 2005)

The applicable rule prior to that was
Rule D10.2.3:
“The Contract of Service between the Player and the Club shall state the Player’s full
financial entitlement from the Club, including signing on fees, additional lump sum
payments, remuneration, bonus payments, removal assistance and benefits in kind. In
any dispute between the Player and the Club, the remuneration contained in the Contract
of Service shall be deemed to be the Player’s complete entitlement. Any Club failing to
detail a Player’s full financial entitlement in the Contract of Service shall be dealt with as
the Board may decide.” (In effect prior to 23 May 2005).

Note the difference in that the rules the SPL web page statement referred to do not require that the form of contract is approved by the SPL . There may be a standard form that the SPL approve but if there is its not covered by D9 or its predecessor D 10.2.3.

However D9.3 does say that no payments should be made unless details form part of the Contract of Service, so ebts with side letters not supplied broke that particular SPL rule.

Then there is D1.13
“A Club must as a condition of Registration and for a Player to be eligible to Play in Official Matches , deliver the executed originals of all Contracts of Service and Amendments and/or extensions to Contracts of Service and all other agreements providing for payment, other than for reimbursement of expenses actually incurred, between that Club and Player, to the Secretary, within fourteen days of such Contract of Service or other agreement being entered into, amended and/or, as the case may be, extended.”

Now that SPL rule D1.13 was clearly broken as full contracts were not delivered to the SPL Secretary within 14 days and I think it is one that Hirsute Pursuit (at least) has referred to in the past. So as far as SPL rules are concerned ineligible players played.

At this point enter SPL Rule D1.11 (although it did not form part of initial SPL statement) and with it came Bryson and the SFA for it was around SPL rule D1.11 that LNS with Bryson’s help was able to nullify the eligibility element of D1.13 and so any breach by Rangers under D1.11.

Rule D1.11 says

“Any Club Playing an ineligible Player in an Official Match and the Player concerned shall be in breach of the Rules.”

It was as this point that the clear notion of eligibility under D1.13 as the SPL saw it was fudged with the help of Bryson’s Law on the REGISTRATION of contracts with The SFA (as opposed to lodging of contracts with the SPL) – you know the one where Bryson said the failure to submit all documents on registration did not make a player ineligible unless and until it was known that some payment details had been withheld (Bryson’s Law).

The SFA Rules on Registration referred to in the LNS Commission (and subject to Bryson’s interpretation) are:

SFA Article 12.3:
“Furthermore, all payments whether made by the club or otherwise which are to be made to a Player solely relating to his playing activities must be fully recorded within the relevant written agreement with the Player prior to submission to the Association and/or the recognised football body of which his Club is in membership.”

and

SFA Registration Procedures Paragraph 2.2.1:
“Unless lodged in accordance with Procedures Rule 2.13 a Non-Recreational Contract
Player Registration Form will not be valid unless it is accompanied by the contract entered into between the club concerned and the player stating all the Terms and Conditions in conformity with the
Procedures Rule 4.”
and
SFA Procedures Rule 4:
“All payments to be made to a player relating to his playing activities must be clearly recorded upon the relevant contract and/or agreement. No payments for his playing activities may be made to a Player via a third party.”

But this was an SPL Commission on breaking of SPL rules so why involve the SFA at all? For some reason they were involved and in effect over ruled the SPL understanding of eligibility. We can only wonder why the SFA were called in but perhaps the answer can be found in the following

SFA Article 5.1(b):
“All members (ie SPL) shall: … (b) be subject to and shall comply with these Articles and any
… regulations … promulgated by the Board … ;”
and
Rule A7.1:
“A.7.1. Membership of the Scottish Premier League shall constitute an agreement between the Company and each Club, and between each of the Clubs, to be bound by and to comply with:- (a) these Rules and the Articles of Association; (b) the SFA Articles ….. ;” (This Rule and its predecessor A7.1.1(b) in effect from 1998).”

This in effect means what the SFA says goes.

So you have the SPL rule D1.13 saying a player is ineligible if the executed originals of all Contracts of Service and Amendments and/or extensions to Contracts of Service and all other agreements providing for payment are not delivered within 14 days (as they were not) and SPL rule D1.11 saying a club will be in breach of the rules if they play an ineligible player as the SPL have defined what makes a player ineligible, but then you have Bryson on behalf of the SFA saying that players ARE still eligible once the SFA have registered them (regardless of the SPL rule) and will remain so until it is discovered all Contracts for Service etc. have not been delivered.

It would appear to be a straight clash of rules and you would think that it being an SPL competition under SPL rules that the SPL rules would be those applicable and indeed (as I have often wondered) why Bryson and the SFA were involved in the Commission at all and on whose say so?

In effect once the SFA got involved (and perhaps because of them) the SPL were bound by Article 5.1(b) and A7.1 to comply with the SFA Articles and rules and in effect Bryson’s Law has overruled SPL rule D1.13. This along with D1.11 really ought to be re written to reflect Bryson’s Law.
A simple add on to the effect that “if full details are not disclosed in the Contracts of Service a player will however remain eligible to play until such times as it is discovered that full details were withheld” should suffice.

(At this point I’m hoping John Clarke and others will write to the SPFL and ask them if rules D1.11 and D1.13 are to be amended in order to comply with SFA Rules as articulated by Mr Bryson to and accepted by Lord Nimmo Smith).

I would also be grateful for confirmation of the foregoing interpretation from the rule boys (Eco/HP/CM and any other) of that mind.

Assuming the foregoing and what else we know about the LNS commissioning is correct what can we say about where we are?

1. The LNS Commission was misled by the concealment of key evidence relating to irregular (and unpaid tax on) DOS ebts within the timeframe of the Commissioning letters i.e. July 1998 and so the LNS Decision is factually unsound.

2. The SFA need not to have been involved as it was SPL rules and an SPL Commission, and had SFA not been involved the matter of player eligibility would not have been given the absurd nullifying construction that it has by the application of SFA registration rules.

3. Having been called in one of the SFA witnesses (Campbell Ogilvie) knew the difference between the early ebts and the later ones having instigated the former and received the latter. Also having attended dinner with Craig Whyte and Stewart Regan in Dec 2011 to discuss the UEFA 2011 Licence and the unpaid tax relating to the wee tax case that arose from those early ebts concealed (see 1) , he would have known those early ebt payments to be irregular yet said nothing in his testimony to LNS on the key distinction.

4. The SFA have stated their position on player eligibility and as SPFL must comply with SFA Rules under Art 5.1(b) and Rule A7.1 then SPFL rule D1.11 and D1.13 must be amended or the SPFL argue the absurdity of the Bryson eligibility ruling and produce a consistent set of rules fit for SPL lodging and SFA registration purposes.

5. The quicker the damage that the LNS Commission has done to the fundamental integrity of Scottish football by setting The Commission aside the better.

(Oh what a tangled web we weave)

View Comment

iamacantPosted on7:45 pm - Jun 25, 2014


With the SMSM churning out the feelgood stories recently regarding Miller signing, Nerlinger almost ready to put pen to paper, Middle East moneymen ready to invest more millions into TRFC and a possible Kris Boyd signing, am I too cynical in thinking there might be a stock market announcement at 4.59pm on Friday ❓

View Comment

JimBhoyPosted on7:48 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Could it be Boughie and Bouzie at the back for rangers.. Rangers don’t do austerity….

View Comment

macfurglyPosted on8:20 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Auldheid says:
June 25, 2014 at 7:20 pm
4. The SFA have stated their position on player eligibility and as SPFL must comply with SFA Rules under Art 5.1(b) and Rule A7.1 then SPFL rule D1.11 and D1.13 must be amended or the SPFL argue the absurdity of the Bryson eligibility ruling and produce a consistent set of rules fit for SPL lodging and SFA registration purposes.
————————–
The purpose of all of those rules is to prevent players being paid in brown envelopes either by the club they play for or by third parties – an obvious measure to protect against money laundering and fraud and one which would have been essential for FIFA (?) and UEFA even if it was not already so for the SFA.
Bryson’s Law has the effect of suggesting that the SFA are not greatly concerned about these matters, “players being paid that way are eligible until we know about it and we will not be asking”, and on that basis they are out on a long and very thin limb, one would imagine. This does not mean they condone such practices of course, but that they will go easy on any club found to be using them.
The SPFL and member clubs, must be very confident that should anything of this sort happen in the future, the buck will not be quickly slipped back to them.

View Comment

AllyjamboPosted on8:47 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Auldheid says:
June 25, 2014 at 7:20 pm

Excellent though your post was, I had great difficulty in following the barrage of rules it included, and this is where I think the SFA, plus, of course, the SPL who wanted the same end result, were able to ‘get away with it’. The rules seem extremely complex, with more than one ‘rule’ covering similar situations, or in this case, breeches. This is where I think it was so easy to deceive the other clubs as very few chairmen and directors would have the time, or inclination, to even try to understand them (though their secretaries might if they had a spare few hours) so would be happy to accept the tribunal’s findings, especially one with such a weighty panel. If the press, on the other hand, had started shouting ‘foul’ then they might well have challenged the findings, but we know that didn’t happen.

However, on what I could follow of the rules in your post, it is clear that the SPL rules were gazumped by those less definite rules of the SFA, despite the SFA’s categorical statement that they would have no part of the tribunal, as they would be the appeal body. There has never been an explanation for that, and none has been asked by the MSM. We all know why. I think it would be a pretty good guess to say that the SFA intervention was necessary for the plain and simple reason that the opposite to the desired result would have been inevitable without it. It would also have been much harder, if not impossible, for the SFA, on appeal, to make their rules ‘fit’ in the same way, because it would be obvious, to everyone, that they didn’t, and an explanation, set out in the appeal verdict, would be necessary, and probably impossible. And, of course, by getting involved, the SFA debarred themselves from being the appeal body. Nobody asked them about that either!

There are many questions the ‘prosecution’ should have asked of the ‘Bryson defence’, with, ‘how is the SFA rule relevant, and why is it more germane than the SPL rules?’ might well have been one (or is that two?) of them. That Bryson went unchallenged should be a mystery to us all; but it’s not, for we all know the reason. Another question that should have been asked was, ‘can you give any examples of this interpretation being used before?’ and when, almost inevitably, the answer was no, he should have been asked how he could possibly have come up with what must be his own interpretation? One would think, that to create the veneer that the evidence was sound, at least a token challenge would have been made. It probably wasn’t made because they couldn’t think of any relevant questions that could have been answered without blowing the defence apart.

Back on the difficulty of understanding the rules, and the interpretations made in the LNS enquiry. If I am right in suggesting the club chairmen etc would find it too onerous to dissect the rules, they might not find it onerous at all to see the that Rangers made prohibited payments, a great many prohibited payments, and feel very angry and deceived. Once they realise this they just might start to ask the questions that should have been asked. But maybe not!

So, outwith the ludicrous interpretations of the rules (Bryson), the nonsensical ‘no sporting advantage’ , and so much more, we also have following three ‘strikes’:

1) The unexplained changing of the start date that took the already illegal DOS scheme out of the enquiry.

2) The changing/secret dropping of the initial charge of making prohibited payments.

3) The SFA providing ‘evidence’ that would inevitably debar them as the appeal body having previously stated that they couldn’t get involved because of their appeal body status.

That should be enough to set alarm bells ringing in any reasonable mind.

View Comment

twopandaPosted on8:58 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Seems MSM know more but `reticent`. Wonder if it were any other club – one in particular – suspect no effort spared [to say the least] – and doubt legal excuses any handicap.

Anyway it helps we understand MSMs effective role in this limited to airing calculating manufactured PR.
At least we know ground rules to review past MSM reports for credence.

Appreciate fleshing out the 5WA was old hat to some but of interest nevertheless to those of us who cannot keep up to speed on this mess. More to ascertain for us numpty heads.

Sevco5088 MSM reportage so far is particularly suspect.

Starting with – whatever reported so far – there seems to great effort [and v great expense] to dissolve it. Now why exactly should that be?

We can easily assume there`s possibly something to hide from public view – and we know for sure that topic not explored in detail in public in the MSM. The simple story out there is signature’s on Directors appointments – allegedly forged – and the police looking into it [we`re told]. Presented as this possibly a part of a CW ownership claim but curiously seems delayed as proving a signature false or not seems to demand inordinate time. Seems to be possibly important to kick `signatures` and a potential ownership claim into long grass is the impression. That`s IMO the snapshot simple story so far.

What I`m not understanding is exactly why sevco5088s existence is vital to the CW case if he has one
– or why it appears vital that they’re spending so much money to dissolve sevco5088.

If CW has an ownership case – or concern with assets transfer, – seems to me disputed paper registrations on Companies House isn`t conclusive backbone critical – It may help as corroboration but hardly vital in itself IMO. It could be a SFA-CW thing but they`ve been through that, and appear to have SFA carte blanche so that won`t bother them in the slightest IMO .

More to the point is possibly no sevco5088 accounts registered, or board records available – or particularly relevant to the original `sale` with Duffers and the confidential terms letter. Sevco5088 could also yield information on the sevcoScotland assets `transfer` – they say there was a transfer – but records might show if all said `assets`
– [and liabilities], – were transferred at the same time.

Of interest is not just the purchase price of 5.5m – but of available working capital in late summer 2012 for an effective start-up, – and what was anticipated for football debts and prize / transfer monies to justify the `going concern` contract`s conditions required for a CVA or a `sale`.

[They?] needed much more cash than 5.5m capital input `up front`– definitely
Any such information or more if it existed could be expunged with sevco5088 dissolved.

Could be v wrong – but there`s possibly more reasons for this strike off effort other than any contingent CW claim. In any event, whoever caused the suspension of a strike off has used legal dispute – pending /ongoing investigation as reason. It is possible CW&Co suspended strike off – but potentially the liquidators could be in there for needed investigative reports – or creditors with an interest – or shared consensus to do so.

And / Or Sensible Bears keeping a beady eye on things – and options? – Quite possibly IMO.

We sure can`t rely on the MSM for information they may have / not have.
Happy to be corrected

– Thoughts anyone?

View Comment

mcfcPosted on9:20 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Ask Ally

It wasn.t the really dirtiest deeds that caught up with him – prostitution, racketeering, extortion, murder. It was the humble everyday flow and recording of cash in and cash out that delivered justice and sent him down. So while it may be eternally frustrating that so many have bent so far and twisted so much to save the fabric of society, it will be the simple pound signs that will ultimately delivery what is so richly deserved.

Ally Capone of course, tax fraudster

View Comment

AuldheidPosted on9:26 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Allyjambo says:

June 25, 2014 at 8:47 pm

The entwinement of SPL and SFA rules even affects the constitution with no clear definition of the responsibilities and rights of one in respect of the other. That is a mess that is a project to sort out in its own right.

On LNS decision what I can say as a fact is that the SPL were rushed into accepting the LNS judgement and not all at the conference call (yes conference call) meeting were happy to accept it.

I think you are spot on in your analysis that clubs were unsighted on just what rules were breached or not breached and why, it would take a lawyer to work his/her way through it all to get a clear picture of events. That is why the clear and easy to understand withholding of evidence, particularly with the knowledge the SFA had, is key to getting LNS overturned. It was a fix on that ground alone never mind the involvement of the SFA on rules and bizarre results that followed.

Although D1.11 was crucial in allowing LNS with Bryson’s help to twist the intent of the clear SPL Rule D1.13 it actually only appears once in the charges of the Commission.

There are 10 sub paras in relation to payments and contracts covering the period Nov 2000 to May 2011 but only ONE (para 3 (c) ) covering the period 22/05/05 to 05/05/11 mentions the t rule D1.11. So it is not mentioned in the original SPL statement, makes an appearance in the Commission but is pivotal in terms of overturning D1.13. You would almost think someone was looking for a way out.

Somehow your three strikes or a version thereof need to be put to club chairmen.

View Comment

wottpiPosted on9:29 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Allyjambo says:
June 25, 2014 at 8:47 pm
1 0 Rate This

Auldheid says:
June 25, 2014 at 7:20 pm

All very interesting but let’s not forget in amongst all this dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s the SFA is an organisation that can throw teams out of their competitions for simply not have a date on a duplicate document.

I note the sad passing of David Taylor at 60 (far far too young) but also see he was a lawyer too.
We have had our game run by ‘administrators’ like Ogilive, Farry,Walker and Regan and lawyers like Taylor and Doncaster who all frankly can’t see the wood from the trees and have complicated the rules to such a degree even they don’t know what they are talking about.

The very fact that it needs a judge of the Supreme Court and other great legal minds to make rulings on the running of football says it all.
It is often said that the game its self is simple and the rules should be the same.
The whole rule book (or is that rule books) from the administration side of the game is overly complex and there should be no reason for differing authorities to have differing rules.

Unfortunately it is not just football but there are many industries these days that have people jumping through more daft hoops that at the end of the day are pretty meaningless in terms of getting the job done.
Form filling, box ticking and extraordinarily long legal gobbledygook for the sake of it with the documents never really being examined fully , however as long as they seem to be there, then that’s OK.

Frankly the world has gone mad in terms of making things that should be relatively simple into a legal minefield.

Rant Over 🙂

View Comment

AuldheidPosted on9:34 pm - Jun 25, 2014


macfurgly says:

June 25, 2014 at 8:20 pm

All the more reason to have LNS set aside. It is an affront to what protects football. It even ignores what It was intended to prevent, brown ebt envelopes.

View Comment

justshateredPosted on10:05 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Auldheid says:
June 25, 2014 at 9:26 pm

I may be wrong but was the original LNS enquiry brought about by the SPL with the SFA not getting involved because they were the appellant body?
This makes the calling of Bryson an even more strange decision.
There was, as you have pointed out, differences between what the SPL and the SFA considered as legal registrations.
If the SPL rules were broken that was an end of the matter. It was the SPL rule book that should have been dissected by LNS and not the SFA rules.

The fact that Bryson was allowed to put his own unique interpretation on the rules where no one from the prosecution cross examined that interpretation regarding previous rule breaches was, in my opinion, all part of the stitch up.
From the very out set this was doomed.
As for the clubs not knowing what rules were broken then I simply do not buy that.
Every club has a secretary and it is their job to know the rule book and seek clarification on anything that they are uncertain about.
I’ve long since came to the conclusion that everyone was in on this from start to finish and the longer things drift then the more this belief is reinforced.

View Comment

AllyjamboPosted on10:40 pm - Jun 25, 2014


Auldheid says:
June 25, 2014 at 9:26 pm

‘Somehow your three strikes or a version thereof need to be put to club chairmen.’
______________________________________________________-

Either that (three strikes) or something that is simple to grasp that sums up the known knowns as opposed to our justified anger and distrust of the findings and results. If we can do that, then it should be much easier for those inclined to ask the difficult questions such as Why did you change the start date of the inquiry? as there is nothing to interpret there; as opposed to saying rule xxx says this, so how did you come to this decision? which could be defended by interpretation, perhaps not so easy to defend if legal minds are asking the questions, but I doubt the chairmen would be consulting lawyers, certainly not at this stage.

I think the best we can hope for is to get the clubs to start asking the questions, and then to hope that they are dissatisfied enough with the answers to make them angry.

View Comment

AllyjamboPosted on10:50 pm - Jun 25, 2014


wottpi says:
June 25, 2014 at 9:29 pm

Rant Over 🙂
___________________
And a good rant it was 🙂

I think that, no matter how complex the rules, or laws, are, for justice to be done, there must be the will on at least one side to see justice done. That was clearly not the case at the LNS tribunal. The LNS tribunal turned out to be no more than an administrative procedure to get from A to B, or, perhaps, from A to A.

View Comment

GoosyGoosyPosted on11:25 pm - Jun 25, 2014


The mind boggles at how Suarez would have been dealt with by the SFA if he played for TRFC and had been videoed eating the referee at half time?

Would he have got off using the Bryson defence ?

View Comment

StevieBCPosted on11:37 pm - Jun 25, 2014


GoosyGoosy says:
June 25, 2014 at 11:25 pm

The mind boggles at how Suarez would have been dealt with by the SFA if he played for TRFC and had been videoed eating a whole referee at half time?

Would he have got off using the Bryson defence ?…
=========================================
Since you mentioned Suarez on this thread GG, I had an idea about how the dodgy FIFA could possibly deal with the ‘incident’.

Uruguay presumably submit evidence/excuse that the Italian player thrust his shoulder into Suarez’ gnashers, or some such b*llox.
FIFA ‘committee’ review submission – deliberate – and publish their findings/punishment tomorrow/Thursday.

Then…Uruguay appeal whatever the punishment is, mibbees late on Friday.

Pending the organisation of an independent appeal panel, Suarez is free to play on Saturday: innocent until proven guilty ?

If I was a well dodgy FIFA blazer, that could be a convenient ‘get out’ to keep Suarez in the tournament – if only for the next game ?
Unless the World Cup is different, I presume Suarez has a right to a ‘convenient’ appeal…as we see so often in domestic leagues – prior to ‘big games’ ?

View Comment

ptd1978Posted on11:54 pm - Jun 25, 2014


I can’t say that he’s a saint but I feel I have to defend Suarez on his third biting allegation.
From the footage I’ve seen, he’d be doing well to get a bite in in the time there was contact. He had clearly disengaged by the time an Italian elbow wafted past his ear. It looks like a straight forward head butt to me, which went a bit wrong. On neither of his first two offences has Suarez sat there feeling his teeth. I think he was as surprised as everyone else at what happened.
If FIFA decide that an accidental toothing while trying to chin someone constitutes a bite, fair enough, but that would include an admission that it was a mistake. It can happen. I was involved in an incident with a friend many years ago. We were at a disco, Chumbawamba were playing. He got out of sync and got back up again while the rest of us were getting knocked down. He ended up with a small cut on his forehead and I ended up with a chipped tooth.
The worldwide MSM rush to judgement is a shame but reflective of the need to generate World Cup headlines.
To me it was a Glasgow kiss, not a bite and should be punished accordingly.
He’s being found guilty on his reputation and that’s the kind if behaviour this website deplores.
If others disagree, fair enough. I just don’t see the time or the jaw muscle movement for a bite.
PS. Spanish press are now reporting that the initial Facebook picture that the press ran with last night may have been photoshopped. I don’t know if this is true as I only saw a few seconds of the report. It may be a Uruguayan claim.
Just when we thought the World Cup was getting a bit tasty…

View Comment

StevieBCPosted on12:09 am - Jun 26, 2014


ptd1978 says:
June 25, 2014 at 11:54 pm

I can’t say that he’s a saint but I feel I have to defend Suarez on his third biting allegation…
=======================================================================
OK, ptd1978 I’ll bite… 😯

You’re absolutely right: it’s all about opinions/perceptions/etc.

The unfortunate aspect is that it’s that well known, corrupt organisation called FIFA that somehow believes it commands a moral position from which to judge others, [a bit like our SFA.]

However, whatever FIFA decides on the Suarez case – I am fairly confident that they will still mange to p*ss off the majority of the fans globally.

View Comment

John ClarkPosted on12:15 am - Jun 26, 2014


ptd1978 says:
June 25, 2014 at 11:54 pm
‘..Just when we thought the World Cup was getting a bit tasty…’
———-
Suarez might have an opinion on how flavoursome an individual player may be! 😀

View Comment

AuldheidPosted on12:32 am - Jun 26, 2014


justshatered says:

June 25, 2014 at 10:05 pm

Whilst you might expect every club to have Secretary who knows all the rules and how to interpret them that is not in fact the case.

Football rules, National and UEFA are only one part of what Club Secretaries have to know. Learning Norwegian and Norwegian contractual law one week, Glaswegian or Edinburgh pub law the next. It is not that they cannot interpret the rules, it is a matter of what they have to focus on.

Everything is, if nothing is focussed on it stays nothing.

On the SFA involvement I never bought the court of appeal stance. It could have gone to CAS or one anj Appeal Board created for the event. If it was a registration matter Bryson is the man. It was a Contracts and Payments matter covered by SPL rules and should have stayed with them.

It was a fix from the outset designed to avoid what both SFA and SPL knew.

View Comment

HirsutePursuitPosted on2:29 am - Jun 26, 2014


We need to be careful not to get hung up on the commission’s inspection of the SFA’s registration procedures.The SPL’s Articles and rules were always subject to the SFA’s regulations and it was perfectly valid, IMO, to examine how these all fitted together.

I also think it is too easy to portray Sandy Bryson as the villian of the piece. He may have given an opinion on the registration processes; did we hear any opinion on eligibility?

The problem is not whether LNS should have been looking at the SFA procedures; but the nonsensical interpretation that was made.

Just to be clear, the following is taken from the LNS Commission decision:

[58] SFA Article 12.3, in effect from and including 22 May 2002 provides:
“Furthermore, all payments, whether made by the club or otherwise, which are to be made to a player solely relating to his playing activities must be fully recorded within the relevant written agreement with the player prior to submission to the Scottish FA and/or the recognised football body of which his Club is in membership.”

[59] SFA Procedures Rule 2.2.1, in effect from and including the season 2002/03, provides:
“Unless lodged in accordance with Procedures Rule 2.13 a Non-Recreational Contract Player Registration Form will not be valid unless it is accompanied by the contract entered into between the club concerned and the player stating all the terms and conditions in conformity with the Procedures Rule 4.”

[60] SFA Procedures Rule 4, in effect from and including the season 2002/03, provides:
“All payments to be made to a player relating to his playing activities must be clearly recorded upon the relevant contract and/or agreement. No payments for his playing activities may be made to a player via a third party.”

[86] Evidence was given by Alexander Bryson, Head of Registrations at the SFA, who described the registration process. During the course of his evidence he explained that, once a player had been registered with the SFA, he remained registered unless and until his registration was revoked. Accordingly, even if there had been a breach of the SFA registration procedures,such as a breach of SFA Article 12.3, the registration of a player was not treated as being invalid from the outset, and stood unless and until it was revoked.

The key phrase (from SFA Procedures Rule 2.2.1) is “…a Non-Recreational Contract Player Registration Form will not be valid unless it is accompanied by the contract…”

Despite the clearly written SFA procedure, Alexander Bryson is reported by the Commission to have stated that: “..even if there had been a breach of the SFA registration procedures,such as a breach of SFA Article 12.3, the registration of a player was not treated as being invalid from the outset, and stood unless and until it was revoked.”

Based on the Bryson testimony, Mr McKenzie accepted then that the SPL had no power to retrospectively revoke a player’s registration if the SFA rules would not allow the registration form to be considered invalid from the outset. Perhaps Mr McKenzie felt obliged to accept this SFA “ruling” on the registration process. What he (and LNS) were not obliged to do was conflate registration with eligibility.

SPL Rule D1.13, in effect from and including 23 May 2005 provides:
“A Club must, as a condition of Registration and for a Player to be eligible to Play in Official Matches, deliver the executed originals of all Contracts of Service and amendments and/or extensions to Contracts of Service and all other agreements providing for payment, other than for reimbursement of expenses actually incurred, between that Club and Player, to the Secretary [of the SPL], within fourteen days of such Contract of Service or other agreement being entered into, amended and/or, as the case may be,extended.”

SPL Rule D1.13 deals with both registration AND eligibility.

Eligibility is not a direct consequence of being registered. Eligibility is gained through the fulfilment of the conditions of Rule D1.13.

Whilst the SFA registration processes may have an impact on the SPL’s ability to retrospectively revoke registration, a failure to fulfil the conditions of Rule D1.13 should still have rendered the player ineligible from the outset.

View Comment

BawsmanPosted on6:25 am - Jun 26, 2014


Last paragraph is another nail in Reagan’s “armageddon” coffin argument.

http://sport.stv.tv/football/scottish-premier/280536-celtics-financial-windfall-from-201314-euro-matches-revealed/

View Comment

Danish PastryPosted on7:07 am - Jun 26, 2014


The very short piece or footnote type article below (to the previous one about the Blue Pitch Mystery Man Speaks) seems to indicate that the CF documents posted to KJ (by a poster here) have been taken as genuine. Or did he have those anyway?

One thing about the Blue Pitch & Margarita double act that my Winnie-the-Pooh sized brain doesn’t get is why they have such a huge influence when their shareholding is relatively small (percentage-wise). Maybe KJ will tell us why the Greenock-Beruit axis rules the roost? Is it because, as Barca argues, Mr Rizvi does indeed run the whole show?

MYSTERY has surrounded Blue Pitch Holdings ever since the name first entered the Rangers story in the summer of 2012.

It’s believed Blue Pitch and Margarita Holdings funded most of Charles Green’s £5.5million buy-out of the club’s assets following liquidation of the oldco in October of that year.

Last year, ahead of a shareholders’ revolt at the AGM, repeated attempts were made to force the board to disclose the identities of the investors – but the requisitioners were left dissatisfied by the less-than-conclusive nature of what was eventually disclosed.

The two groups currently own around 11 per cent of Rangers shares and Blue Pitch retain a major influence on decision-making at Ibrox.

The Record has seen documents which show Houssami, for Blue Pitch, demanded the removal of Malcolm Murray and director Phil Cartmell last summer. He also called for James Easdale to be appointed to the board.

Murray and Cartmell were axed with Easdale taking his seat at the top of the marble staircase. He remains on the PLC board. Brother Sandy is chairman of the football board.

View Comment

upthehoopsPosted on7:09 am - Jun 26, 2014


Auldheid says:
June 25, 2014 at 9:34 pm
31 0 Rate This

macfurgly says:

June 25, 2014 at 8:20 pm

All the more reason to have LNS set aside. It is an affront to what protects football. It even ignores what It was intended to prevent, brown ebt envelopes.
=======================================================
Imagine it was another club. For my scenario I have chosen Hearts.

Imagine a different scenario where the promises of success made by Vladimir Romanov when he took over Hearts had come to fruition. Imagine Hearts had won the league three times and gained automatic entry to the Champions League. Agents were letting it be known the rates on offer were more than that at Celtic Park or Ibrox, and we all just assumed Romanov was funding it via his enormous personal wealth. Then all of a sudden it emerged that an EBT / side letter policy was what was funding this success, so much so the BBC ran a documentary to tell us who the recipients were, then all hell breaks loose.

In the above scenario, does anyone seriously believe Hearts would still be sitting with those three titles against their name at the present time?

View Comment

tcup 2012Posted on7:20 am - Jun 26, 2014


BAWSMAN says: June 26, 2014 at 6:25 am
=====================

The holy grail for TRFC 🙂
Unfortunately even if they did qualify for the champion’s leauge at the present rate of losses £30m a season not even that would see them break even let alone make a profit

View Comment

Danish PastryPosted on8:02 am - Jun 26, 2014


Bawsman says:
June 26, 2014 at 6:25 am
3 0 Rate This

Last paragraph is another nail in Reagan’s “armageddon” coffin argument.

http://sport.stv.tv/football/scottish-premier/280536-celtics-financial-windfall-from-201314-euro-matches-revealed/
———–

Had a bit of a discussion on a forum last year with some folks who hoped Celtic would get beaten in the CL. The question was asked: ‘Why should we get behind Celtic or other teams in Europe?’

Pity the supporters who see petty rivalry as more important than national ranking points and financial rewards that are won for the benefit of all clubs.

Here’s hoping this year all our Euro teams will enjoy success, difficult as it will be.

View Comment

AllyjamboPosted on10:32 am - Jun 26, 2014


HirsutePursuit says:
June 26, 2014 at 2:29 am

SPL Rule D1.13, in effect from and including 23 May 2005 provides:
“A Club must, as a condition of Registration and for a Player to be eligible to Play in Official Matches, deliver the executed originals of all Contracts of Service and amendments and/or extensions to Contracts of Service and all other agreements providing for payment, other than for reimbursement of expenses actually incurred, between that Club and Player, to the Secretary [of the SPL], within fourteen days of such Contract of Service or other agreement being entered into, amended and/or, as the case may be,extended.”
_____________________________________________-

And there it is. A rule that sets out what is required by each club, without the need for interpretation. It doesn’t just state the requirement, it says that it MUST be met for a club to be ELIGIBLE to play in OFFICIAL MATCHES. It is totally unambiguous.

HP, your post gives extracts relating to the SFA evidence, is there reference to SPL Rule D1.13, and is there an explanation of their interpretation? If the SFA rules are seen as overarching the SPL rules, surely they would only be used in a case where the SPL rules didn’t cover the situation adequately, and even then, only to prevent the miscreant ‘getting off’ as a result of poorly worded rules. It would be more understandable if it was the case that the SPL rules covering this were somehow fudged, and open to various interpretations, and the higher body was then called upon for a more definitive ruling. In this case the SPL rules state precisely what is required, they make it clear that rule D1.13 was broken and RFC played ineligible players in many/all of the games during the period in question. Looking at Bryson’s evidence it actually makes it clear that the SPL rules were better formed to deal with eligibility than those of the SFA, and so, therefore, should have been the sole consideration. The SFA rules are, in fact, relevant only to a club’s participation in the Scottish Cup. The question remains, and will probably never be answered; why did a rule, as unequivocal as SPL rule No D1.13, not result in title stripping?

View Comment

alexander276Posted on11:16 am - Jun 26, 2014


It is a long time ago and I was young and obviously naïve. When this blew up I checked the rules and was impressed. I thought someone wrote a masterly set of rules with no ambiguities. What a fool I was …

View Comment

AllyjamboPosted on11:20 am - Jun 26, 2014


http://www.philmacgiollabhain.ie/choosing-the-wrong-side-in-the-sevco-civil-war/

New blog from Phil, which seems to suggest TRFC live on, but only just. They still need a successful (£8m) share issue, over and above the rights issue, though that, I would think, will depend very heavily on Deloittes signing off the accounts – very hard to sell shares in that scenario. Even if they sign it off with a qualification, it would surely sink any share issue.

View Comment

PhilMacGiollaBhainPosted on11:32 am - Jun 26, 2014


Allyjambo says:
June 26, 2014 at 11:20 am
The cash situation makes it touch and go.
Tough choices ahead.

View Comment

AllyjamboPosted on11:48 am - Jun 26, 2014


PhilMacGiollaBhain says:
June 26, 2014 at 11:32 am

Any word on the position with Deloittes, have they moved nearer to signing off the accounts, or are they still playing hard ball?

View Comment

MoreCelticParanoiaPosted on12:08 pm - Jun 26, 2014


Auldheid says:
June 25, 2014 at 9:34 pm
42 0 i Rate Up

macfurgly says:

June 25, 2014 at 8:20 pm

All the more reason to have LNS set aside. It is an affront to what protects football. It even ignores what It was intended to prevent, brown ebt envelopes.
_____________________________________________________

The only thing LNS was intended to prevent was any meaningful punishment of Rangers or The Rangers

View Comment

PhilMacGiollaBhainPosted on12:11 pm - Jun 26, 2014


Allyjambo says:
June 26, 2014 at 11:48 am
DL won’t have started on the accounts yet.
They responded to RIFC request for guidance.
V miffed that it became public.

View Comment

mcfcPosted on12:15 pm - Jun 26, 2014


PMG – a bit of subbing needed on the blog

View Comment

MoreCelticParanoiaPosted on12:19 pm - Jun 26, 2014


GoosyGoosy says:
June 25, 2014 at 11:25 pm

The mind boggles at how Suarez would have been dealt with by the SFA if he played for TRFC and had been videoed eating the referee at half time?
Would he have got off using the Bryson defence ?
——————————————————————————————-

If it was Callum Murray he’d have testified in his favour that TRFC player ate him in a non aggressive manner

View Comment

mcfcPosted on12:20 pm - Jun 26, 2014


So all they need to remain afloat for now is £8mil share option, £6mil more STs (20,000 @ £300) and £8mil share issue – all by the end of August – or else.

What can possibly go wrong?

View Comment

wottpiPosted on12:28 pm - Jun 26, 2014


PhilMacGiollaBhain says:
June 26, 2014 at 12:11 pm

I think we are agreed they are walking a tightrope and that, without an apparent line of credit, cash is King.

However little progress seems to be being made on cutting costs even if they do get some share cash in.

What moves to get Ally and his pals and possibly players (if they don’t get offloaded) to buy into your suggested austerity wage capping?

Similarly no further reports of MP even getting mothballed to help reduce costs let alone sold. Any news there?

View Comment

AuldheidPosted on12:31 pm - Jun 26, 2014


Hirsute Pursuit
Ally Jambo

It was rule D1. 11 that LNS used as an “in” to undermine D1. 13 aided and abetted by Bryson ‘ s law.

Have a look at The Decision. Do a find on D1.11 and see how it is used. It was not part of the original SPL statement probably because D1.13 was so clear.

I’d do so myself but am on mobile and I could not do it cut and paste justice.

Apart from this aspect LNS also got it wrong by conflating two types of ebts and was able to do so because evidence of the difference was not supplied.

How much more is needed to remove this blatant contempt for supporters from the scene?

View Comment

mcfcPosted on12:41 pm - Jun 26, 2014


Long before I ever drove in Italy, I remember reading an article by Howard Jacobson saying that the Italians don’t mind if you break the rules of the road as long as you do it creatively. He gave the example of a caravaner attempting a three point turn on a mountain hairpin to appreciative applause from unwilling observers in the swelling traffic jam uphill and downhill..I later had personal experience being directed down a three lane one way street during the Milanese rush hour – the wrong way – by a hopeless navigator – but lovely girl friend They smiled and laughed and waved and cheered. No anger, no Vs, no road rage.

The response of Uruguay to Bite-Gate III has a similar innocent, other-worldliness about it. There are some absolute classics in this article from the team captain and country’s president – http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/28023882

Maybe if the SFA, SPL and MSM did their dirty deeds with a little more Latin charm and hand-waving humour, we’d all be more forgiving. 🙂

View Comment

AllyjamboPosted on1:01 pm - Jun 26, 2014


PhilMacGiollaBhain says:
June 26, 2014 at 12:11 pm

Cheers Phil

View Comment

justbecauseyoureparanoidPosted on1:09 pm - Jun 26, 2014


wottpi says:
June 26, 2014 at 12:28 pm
3 0 Rate This

PhilMacGiollaBhain says:
June 26, 2014 at 12:11 pm

I think we are agreed they are walking a tightrope and that, without an apparent line of credit, cash is King.

but of course the King won’t part with the cash

View Comment

AllyjamboPosted on1:19 pm - Jun 26, 2014


mcfc says:
June 26, 2014 at 12:41 pm

Reminds me of a story a friend once told me of picking up his Italian girlfriend at Edinburgh Airport and driving her into rush-hour Edinburgh. She laughed all the way to his flat, unable to believe how ‘polite’ Scottish drivers were. She might have found it different if someone pulling a caravan had tried to do a 3 point turn on the Corstorphine Road though!

In my experience, Italian drivers really are crazy, but they carry it off with such style. Perhaps Suarez’s bite should be considered on a ‘marks for artistic impression’ basis when he is hauled in front of FIFA 😀 ‘Judges, your marks for artistic impression!… 6,6,6, 😈

View Comment

Danish PastryPosted on1:22 pm - Jun 26, 2014


PhilMacGiollaBhain says:
June 26, 2014 at 11:32 am
9 0 Rate

… The cash situation makes it touch and go.
Tough choices ahead.
———-

I was interested in the use of the expression ‘good guys’. I suppose relative to CG, Wallace and Nash may well be. The fans probably still need some convincing though.

An administration event in the new season out of the question? A points penalty might actually be welcome relief and put another year into the programme. If they could reach a post-McCoist, low-cost era and accept another year in the second tier, they must surely become sustainable? But is ‘sustainable’ enough for the owners? Where does the profit come from that the investors require?

View Comment

mcfcPosted on1:26 pm - Jun 26, 2014


Allyjambo says:
June 26, 2014 at 1:19 pm
==========================================
It’s good to be realistic about the probable outcome of ‘marks for artistic dental impression’ 🙂

View Comment

AllyjamboPosted on1:39 pm - Jun 26, 2014


mcfc says:
June 26, 2014 at 1:26 pm

It’s a good job for Chiellini that the incident was so well covered on TV, imagine having to go home, from a trip to Brazil, to the wife, with bite marks on your shoulder… ‘Honest, dear, it wasn’t a woman….I mean, it was….No! No! Don’t cut them off….’ 😕

View Comment

Comments are closed.