Scottish Football: An Honest Game, Honestly Governed?

ByTrisidium

Scottish Football: An Honest Game, Honestly Governed?

A Guest Blog by Auldheid for TSFM

Honesty requires both transparency and accountability. In pursuit of honest, transparent and accountable governance of Scottish football, and only that objective, the following letter, with attachments, has been sent to SPFL lawyers, CEO and SPFL Board Members.

An honest game free from deception is what football supporters of all clubs want. It is the action the letter and attachments prompt that will tell us if there is any intention of providing it.

It is a response on behalf of readers here on TSFM, but the sentiment which underpins it is almost universally held amongst fans of all clubs.  Importantly it is a response directly to all clubs, especially those with a SPFL Board member, that will make the clubs and the football authorities aware just how seriously supporters take the restoration of trust in an honest game, honestly governed.

The annexes to the letter contain information which may be published at a later date. We thought it appropriate to first await any response from any of the recipients.

Please also draw this to the attention of friends who are not internet using supporters and love their football and their club.

Auldheid

__________________________________________________________________

Harper MacLeod
The Ca’d’oro
45 Gordon Street
Glasgow
G1 3PE
19 Feb 2014
Copy sent to SPFL CEO and Board Members *
Dear Mr McKenzie
We the contributors to The Scottish Football Monitoring web site write to you in your capacity as the legal adviser employed by Harper MacLeod to assist the Scottish Premier League (now the Scottish Professional Football League) to gather evidence and investigate the matter of incorrect player registrations involving concealed side letters and employee benefit trusts as defined in the eventual Lord Nimmo Smith Commission.
We note from the then SPL announcement that set up an enquiry that the initial date range to be covered was from the inception of the SPL in July 1998, but that was changed to 23 November 2000 because, according to our understanding, that is the date of the first side letter supplied by Rangers Administrators Duff and Phelps. It is also our understanding that the SPL asked for all documentation relating to side letters as well as the letters themselves.
It is a matter of public record that Rangers Administrators failed to supply the SPL all relevant documentation. Indeed the seriousness of not complying with SPL requests was the subject of an admonition of Rangers/Duff and Phelps from Lord Nimmo Smith under Issue 4 of his Commission.
Quite how serious that failure to comply or concealment was in terms of misleading the Commission and so Lord Nimmo Smith can now be assessed from the information contained at Annexes 1 to 10 attached.
We think that as legal advisers to the SPL (now the SPFL) you have a responsibility to make them aware that their Commission was misled by the concealment of documents starting on 3 September 1999, and signed by current SFA President Campbell Ogilvie, whose silence on the ebt matters referred to in the attached annexes* is questionable at the very least.
This letter but not attachments is being posted on The Scottish Football Monitor web site as this is matter for all of Scottish football and support for the issue being pursued to establish the truth can be gauged by responses from supporters from all Scottish clubs once the letter has been published there.
A copy of this letter with Annexes has also been sent to the SPFL CEO and members of the SPFL Board.
Acknowledgement of receipt and reply can be sent by e mail to:
(Address supplied)
Yours in sport

On behalf of The Scottish Football Monitor contributors and readers. http://www.tsfm.org.uk/

Addressees copied in
Neil Doncaster CEO
The Scottish Professional Football League
Hampden Park
Glasgow G42 9DE

Eric Riley (Celtic),
The Celtic Football Club
Celtic Park
Glasgow G40 3RE

Stephen Thompson (Dundee United),
Tannadice Park,
Tannadice Street,
Dundee, DD3 7JW

Duncan Fraser (Aberdeen);
Aberdeen Football Club plc
Pittodrie Stadium
Pittodrie Street
Aberdeen AB24 5QH

Les Gray (Hamilton),
Hamilton Academical FC
New Douglas Park
Hamilton
ML3 0FT

Mike Mulraney (Alloa)
Alloa Athletic FC
Clackmannan Road
Recreation Park
Alloa FK10 1RY

Bill Darroch (Stenhousemuir).
Stenhousemuir F.C.
Ochilview Park
Gladstone Road
Stenhousemuir
Falkirk
FK5 4QL

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.

3,234 Comments so far

SmugasPosted on3:51 pm - Mar 6, 2014


At least you left Sunday clear for the oh so predictable

“McInnes to be only the start of King’s full frontal assault.” or some other militaristic jingo nonsense!

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CampbellsmoneyPosted on3:55 pm - Mar 6, 2014


TSFM says:
March 6, 2014 at 1:43 pm
9 0 i
Rate This

Campbellsmoney

Is there anyone outside of the clubs who may have locus to challenge LNS? Is there any basis for a challenge?

—————————————————————————————————————————————————————————
I don’t know is the answer, but I doubt it. You see its not a question of law really. Its not a proper court – its a made up thing by a private body.

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manandboyPosted on4:05 pm - Mar 6, 2014


tomtom says: March 6, 2014 at 3:04 pm
Re the EPL I have to disagree with those who think that the bubble will burst. The EPL income is not solely dependent on SKY, they (the EPL) also sell the games to the far east and the revenue from this is extremely high as well. Throw in the interest from the betting concerns and there will always be a market for it.
__________________________________________________________________________________________________________
I agree tomtom.
The EPL seems to be uniquely placed for success on global TV.
With commentary in English matching an increasingly English speaking world
the EPL has a bright future.
Unless people stop watching TV
or some other natural disaster.

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wildwoodPosted on4:08 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Are we comparing steakbakes with steakbakes tho?

There are big comparisons and there are big differences.

Greggs will go on to achieve greater long term financial health if they have healthy competition that push them all the way. They’d need to freshen their product, innovate, keep standards high – make good business decisions. If they did that their customers would stay with them.

If they got complacent through being the only show in town, what motivation would there be to improve, innovate etc. It’d be like shooting fudge donuts on a baking tray. Yeah they’d be ahead – but folk would get fed up with the product and start drifting away to other areas.

Celtic and Scottish football will prosper if the money generated in the game is distributed more evenly. The advent of the Premier League meant measure after measure was introduced to ensure that Celtic and Rangers got a much bigger slice of the apple pie. “Folk are only interested in the OLd Firm Fixtures” apparently. They generate all the money I hear you say.

Yeah but I’d say both teams have been in a very fortunate and ‘privelidged’ position where they each have a big ‘TRADITIONAL’ following (lets leave it at that shall we). That’s tough for the rest of us too.

However wouldn’t it be a much better world if the surviving club realised their very fortunate position both in terms of outstanding business performance as well as the ‘tradition’ factor and acknowleged that they’d be a much greater football citizen if they done much more to distribute wealth within the game, sacrifice a higher percentage than they have done in previous years, supported initiatives that benefitted their competition that raised the overall bar.

Imagine having Celtic Park full to the gunnels every week because there was an exciting close fought, high quality match on show – not just on those wonderful european nights.

I firmly believe over the last 20-30 years we’ve starved the diddy clubs to their detrement. Taking positive remedial and generous action would improve the game overall.

It would be a very magnanamous step – but one that would be such a breath of fresh air for the game.

The avarice and greed to grasp evry penny available within the game has been shown to be the odious practice of the past. It’s time for a new dawn.

Improving the diddy teams through wealth distrubution does not have to be to the detrement of Celtic. It may in fact be something that spurs them on to greater achievements.

Righ where’s that pink jammy?

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manandboyPosted on4:35 pm - Mar 6, 2014


wildwood says: March 6, 2014 at 4:08 pm
_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

While I find much to agree with in what you say, Wildwood,
may I make this point –
according to the SFA the SPFL and their principal business partners,
it is the commercial entity known as ‘rangers’
which is the primary and indispensable source of wealth to the Scottish game.
Stewart Regan, the SFA CEO, has never said, and would never say,
that Celtic is an integral part of Scottish Football, as he did when referring to RFC, before they went into liquidation.

There is a proper order to all things and the first responsibility for the National Game
lies with the football Establishment.

Let the SFA & the SPFL return to their traditional duty of care for all clubs,
then we can look at whatever contribution might come from Parkhead.

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AuldheidPosted on4:40 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Something I thought I’d never say ” Are the Daily Record giving us a glimpse of the future.

http://www.celticquicknews.co.uk/?p=14835&cpage=4#comment-2104558

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CastofthousandsPosted on4:40 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Auldheid says:
March 6, 2014 at 12:42 pm

“What if LNS had been commissioned after the FTT and HMRC had already won at that point?”
———————————
If HMRC had already won then there would have been a huge question mark concerning how Rangers equipped their team. However we will never know if Murray Group would have appealed such an FTT decision to the UTT, in which case LNS could have body swerved EBT’s as he did, and come up with the same decision.

For me there are two possible universes.

In one there is a hunger for probity. People strive for fairness. Justice triumphs in the end.

In the other, misdeeds are glossed over for the sake of expediency. The guilty are unencumbered whilst the innocent live in fear. Justice wilts in a desert bereft of truth.

Now which one do you think we’re living in?

The biggest lesson from RTC & TSFM is that those who play by the rules are often sidelined whereas those that are willing to turn an occasional blind eye prosper.

How do you try and reconcile these two universes?

One way would be to resort to the same devious tactics to achieve your just ends. However that would corrode your whole ethos.

The other is to transport teaspoons of life giving liquid to justice in the hope that he survives long enough to see his morality made manifest.

We seem to be adopting the latter strategy for all the reasons it is obvious we should. However we will in due course become weary of the task. The world does not truly strive for justice. It likes to think it does but we are all hypocritical to some extent.

James Forrest’s piece which lionised Fergus McCann had some interesting devices. He wrote about strategy and tactics. Strategy is when you have a big picture and tactics are when you are basically reacting to events. We are tactical at the moment but have no strategy. We cannot even build a strategy since on such a public forum it would become widely known and therefore undermined. So I suppose we have to run through a variety of tactics and hope we hit a nerve at some point.

Social media is a fairly new phenomenon and though powerful, it has its limitations. My hope is that imperceptibly a strategy is indeed evolving. Not a traditional strategy that is kept locked in a secure cupboard but one that is held securely in fragments in the thoughts of a large number of people. Bit by bit those contributors or yet to be contributors may nudge us in the direction we need to go. I suppose this is what real democracy feels like. There is no instant gratification. No pivotal victories to celebrate. Just a relentless incursion into the territories of the powers that hem us in.

Its all a bit fanciful and Orwellian I know but I suppose all we can do is keep on keeping on.

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manandboyPosted on4:48 pm - Mar 6, 2014


secularfootballfan says: March 6, 2014 at 2:13 pm
I would agree though probably harder to enforce. Proper leadership from the SFA could help as this should really be about investing in the league product, but there is a massive conflict of interest at the top.
_________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Just acknowledging sff’s earlier comment which i missed.

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Not The Huddle MalcontentPosted on4:53 pm - Mar 6, 2014


easyJambo says:
March 5, 2014 at 11:26 pm
15 0 Rate This

Not The Huddle Malcontent says: March 5, 2014 at 10:37 pm

we have had both DAFC and HMFC in admin recently, did any players get axed and what was the fall out as far as their contract went – must it be paid or were they added to the creditor pile?
===========================
Hearts made 4 players and 13 non playing staff redundant within 24 hours. A fifth player was made redundant a week later. A number of other players agreed wage cuts, as did a couple of senior employees some months later.

The players contracts were broken, but I believe that their only entitlement is statutory redundancy pay. (I’m not sure of the redundancy rules, but I think you may have had to have worked for at least two years and the amount is calculated on x weeks pay for each year’s employment)

However the SFA and SPFL have insisted that all football creditors are paid by the new owners (outside the CVA). The Foundation of Hearts have agreed to play that bill which is estimated at approx. £535,000.

From the creditors list, it appears that all players past and present were due a little more than two weeks pay, that being the amount earned in the days leading up to administration. The total owed to ex-players is around £205,000 with more than half of that due to one player, Andy Driver, (I assume that Hearts didn’t pay his wages while he was on loan to Houston for the last few months of his time with Hearts). Other than Andy Driver, the highest claim is for just over £20,000 which is due to one of those made redundant. Current players are only due around £80,000 in total.

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

thanks Easy (and others who commented)

so, can i deduce the following

1. as Sevco isn’t even 2 years old yet, if they were to sack all the players, redundancy would be nothing? (i know people go on about TUPE, but TUPE doesn’t not apply in a transfer of assets – so length of service MUST be 2 years – no?)

2. Will the hearts (4+1) players who were punted in admin have the value of their contract added to the football debts pile that must be paid – it’s not clear form your post easyjambo – or are they jsut getting the statutory pay and everyone is getting the approx 2 weeks owed for before admin?

obviosuly, if player contracts can be breached and not regarded as a football debt, then it changes the usefulness of going into admin or not

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CastofthousandsPosted on5:14 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Campbellsmoney says:
March 6, 2014 at 3:55 pm

“You see its not a question of law really. Its not a proper court – its a made up thing by a private body.”
—————————-
Agreed but I think even quasi-judicial bodies can be legally challenged. I recollect discussions concerning a football rule that prohibits clubs taking the governing body to court. Rangers did exactly this prior to LNS but I don’t think they were ever sanctioned.

You can go to law on just about anything I suppose but you need to have a solid set of precedents and/or a damn good argument and most importantly, a pot of money to see it through.

The reasons LNS never found in what many would see as a sensible manner is that there would have been too much fallout, as many others have alluded to. Expediency was the only resort.

To challenge LNS you would likely have to be an interested party; a club that lost earnings due to misapplication of the rules for instance. No-one has the appetite for this. You’re not meant to take the governing body to law apparently.

The only other alternative is if something catastrophic happened within the SFA or SPFL leading to a clear out of historical personnel. A new broom arriving with a fresh agenda wishing to set previous errors to right.

That just sounds too much like someone who is grasping at straws. Sounds familiar doesn’t it.

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James ForrestPosted on5:14 pm - Mar 6, 2014


The Offensive Behaviour At Football & Threatening Communications Act is one of the most scandalous ever inflicted on Scotland. Here, ex MSP Campbell Martin looks back on why he initially supported it … and why he no longer does. An excellent piece.

http://www.onfieldsofgreen.com/an-offensive-act/

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CampbellsmoneyPosted on5:14 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Not The Huddle Malcontent says:
March 6, 2014 at 4:53 pm
0 1 i
“but TUPE doesn’t not apply in a transfer of assets”

—————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–
TUPE applies in a variety of circumstances (including some where you wouldn’t expect it to). But TUPE definitely applies in a transfer of a business and assets.

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CastofthousandsPosted on5:21 pm - Mar 6, 2014


wildwood says:
March 6, 2014 at 4:08 pm

“Celtic and Scottish football will prosper if the money generated in the game is distributed more evenly.”
——————————–
I agree but this shouldn’t be down to Celtic’s magnanimity. The other clubs need to force change. The non OF clubs are that used to being held in servitude that they have forgotten what it means to take what is rightfully theirs. The post Armageddon era might have been the opportunity for the balance to be redressed but the opportunity appears to have been missed. However, as you say, in the absence of competition Celtic WILL become complacent and their brand will stumble. That is why, despite public assertions to the contrary, they NEED Rangers. Without Rangers their business model doesn’t presently stack up despite what the current balance sheet says.

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JimBhoyPosted on5:25 pm - Mar 6, 2014


secularfootballfan says:
March 6, 2014 at 1:55 pm

I have to whole heartedly disagree.
Celtic (and oldco) have asset stripped the League and plumped their own nests. Celtic talk of lack of competition but it is largely the result of starving the rest of the league over the last 20years. If Celtic truly wanted to help Scottish football they should start with changing to an equitable distribution of cash including league winnings and TV money. Only with these changes will competition come.

Of course Celtic are after a move to the EPL so none if the above will happen, sponsors are chased away from TV deals by threats of Celtic leaving and cycle continues.
——————————————————————————————————————————————————-
Thanks for the reply… I think Lawell’s sentiment was more around the whole of Scottish/European football and not suggesting Barring Celtic all the other teams are crap… That’s what Mr Gannon read into it… Maybe more money should be set aside in the CL to provide not only the teams that do well some cash but their football associations. Maybe we should go back to a domestic 3 foreigner rule….

Celtic is not a cash cow to the rest of Scottish football. Some teams thrived and brought on great young talent when they lost the setanta money so as a counter argument less money available to spend may actually be a good thing as you have to adjust your budgets forcing more investment in youth…

One could argue that the money in the English game allows those teams to more easily asset strip the whole of Scottish football.

The fact you mention Aberdeen taking 40k fans to a game acts as a counter argument to what you put out… Surely Aberdeen should be doing something to keep the majority of these fans coming to their games, I am not sure £500k p.a extra from Celtic would do much for that to happen… But I respect your opinion.

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easyJamboPosted on5:25 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Not The Huddle Malcontent says: March 6, 2014 at 4:53 pm

2. Will the hearts (4+1) players who were punted in admin have the value of their contract added to the football debts pile that must be paid – it’s not clear form your post easyjambo – or are they jsut getting the statutory pay and everyone is getting the approx 2 weeks owed for before admin?
=================================
They appear to be only entitled to the money they have already earned (2 weeks+) and the statutory redundancy payments.

I suspect that the players affected could probably submit a claim for the value of the remainder of their contract, but would end up as unsecured creditors and receive 0p in the pound like the rest of them.

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AllyjamboPosted on5:30 pm - Mar 6, 2014


The question has been raised about what happens, should HMRC win the appeal, with regard to LNS and would it be revisited. I think someone has pointed out that it was announced that the ruling would stand regardless of the result, which was known by the time the LNS tribunal sat. I wonder, had the verdict gone against RFC, would the tribunal have made the same pronouncement (under instruction from the commissioners of the tribunal), or would they have left it to be reviewed should a subsequent appeal overturn the verdict. In other words, if the FTTT had gone against Rangers, leaving LNS/SPL/SFA no wriggle room, forcing them to hand down a more appropriate penalty such as loss of titles, would they then have left it open to revisit the ruling after an appeal, leaving it possible to re-award them; with the appropriate Ibrox ceremony, of course?

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StevieBCPosted on5:31 pm - Mar 6, 2014


The Scottish Press Awards (aka Scottish football’s ‘The Razzies’)
======================
The shortlist has just been announced!
Looks like Keith Jackson is going for 3-in-a-row as ‘Sports News Writer of the Year’, (no really).

But I think we should organise a campaign to register complaints…
Jingle wasn’t even nominated for ‘Scoop of the Year’!
(PMcG : need to do better for him next year… 😉 )

http://www.scottishpressawards.co.uk/shortlist/index.html

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CampbellsmoneyPosted on5:31 pm - Mar 6, 2014


In trying to work out what constitutes “football creditor debt” we need to see how that term is used bu SFA/SPFL.

So I am going to ask a daft question. Does anyone know where In the SFA Rules or SPFL Rules the “football creditor” rule is supposed to live? SPFL Rule E 17 says it is a breach of the Rules not to pay players or coaching or managerial staff (but that bit doesn’t apply in insolvencies).

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JimBhoyPosted on5:38 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Castofthousands says:
March 6, 2014 at 5:21 pm
I dont think the other teams have missed an opportunity I just think with the recession there is less money around generally and bills need paid. It may take a few years to see youth flourish.

Change is definitely needed (throughout European football), I would love to see more European competitions, European league cup competitions maybe. I’d love to see a Celtic colts team in the lower leagues, a no brainer that this option would add money to the game. I’d love to see summer football, just taking my boy to training now, I’d much rather do that over the summer months.

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wottpiPosted on5:43 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Castofthousands says:
March 6, 2014 at 5:21 pm

I agree but this shouldn’t be down to Celtic’s magnanimity. The other clubs need to force change. The non OF clubs are that used to being held in servitude that they have forgotten what it means to take what is rightfully theirs. The post Armageddon era might have been the opportunity for the balance to be redressed but the opportunity appears to have been missed. However, as you say, in the absence of competition Celtic WILL become complacent and their brand will stumble. That is why, despite public assertions to the contrary, they NEED Rangers. Without Rangers their business model doesn’t presently stack up despite what the current balance sheet says.
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Hear what you say buit the model should be that Celtic are provided with competition from any number of teams in the league through a system that shares out the league income in a manner that promotes the development of smaller clubs by allowing them the financial wherewithall to hold onto players and develop competitive squads instead of being forced to re structure nearly every season.

The past system has been shown to be a busted flush with too much money going to the top and anyone trying to gain sucess and honours by living outwith there means finally got caught out.
Just because they have income from a potential 40k fans per home game doesn’t give Rangers the right to lord it over anyone else and calling for them to come back in the exact same form as before is just madness. There is no way they will be able to compete next year, never mind with Celtic, without ‘soft investment’. The whole thing is a money pit as far as I am concerned.
As discussed the other day even Aberdeen have £15m debt hanging over them.
The whole money thing needs a big review. Just getting Rangers back doesn’t really help anybody.

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AuldheidPosted on5:52 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Castofthousands

I know which one we are living in which is why Resolution 12 to the Celtic AGM is so important.

It is telling the SFA that they can be made answerable by folk determined to make them and it is telling Celtic that they too are answerable to shareholders and that an answer to Res12 has to be provided or just reason shown that the resolution is not necessary.

Now what is at the heart of both the case against LNS and Res12 but the SFA handling of the wee tax case or more accurately mishandling.

And who knows all about it at the SFA who was at Rangers when it began ( it is more than the President)

This is not going to go away and the SFA and SPFL would be foolish to think it will. Celtic have shareholders to answer to.

Res12 is about more than was the UEFA licence process properly handled ( it was’nt) it is about accountability.

So is the LNS commissioning issue although the shareholder avenue is not available so other avenues have to be used like raising public awareness via TSFM, blogs and Twitter.

For an update on Res12 see the message on Phil Mac Giolla Bhain’s web site. It is not going to go away.

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easyJamboPosted on5:55 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Allyjambo says: March 6, 2014 at 5:30 pm
============================
I don’t believe that an alternative outcome in the FTT would have affected the LNS judgement at all.

LNS was not concerned with the tax liability of any earnings or benefits, only that they should be disclosed to the SFA and SPL.

The players could have had side letters that stated that they would receive 10 bags of sugar for each appearance and a week’s pass to an Edinburgh Sauna as a bonus for winning the league. HMRC would only have been interested in the taxable value of those benefits, while LNS’ only interest would be that they are disclosed as part of their contract for playing football.

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JimBhoyPosted on5:57 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Scottish football does not have the people in place to facilitate the revolution that is needed. Spain and Germany have proven that sometimes you have just to draw a line in the sand and put out a new blueprint for the future based on youth development. It is the only way ahead but it would mean we need to bin the current inept bunch running the show.

That and summer footie… 😀 Did i mention that before…? There would be more TV revenue and more punters and you could argue more games (midweek).. All you need to do is navigate around the various international tournaments we do not find ourselves at these days. Other countries do it, but personally I wouldn’t trust our football leaders with a wind up toy.

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JimBhoyPosted on6:00 pm - Mar 6, 2014


@StevieBC If anything showed you how bad a state MSM is, it is the razzies list…

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TSFMPosted on6:03 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Campbellsmoney

Is there anyone outside of the clubs who may have locus to challenge LNS? Is there any basis for a challenge?

—————————————————————————————————————————————————————————
I don’t know is the answer, but I doubt it. You see its not a question of law really. Its not a proper court – its a made up thing by a private body.
_________________________________________________________________

I meant a challenge in law. For example, is there a framework whereby a shareholder(s) of a club(s) could challenge the outcome?

It does seem rather odd that, if a most people here believe, RFC achieved honours dishonestly and in doing so denied other clubs prize-money and opportunity that those clubs are reluctant to seek redress.

My guess I that the must have something to lose by bringing that up – but what?

Is there a mechanism through which the SFA/SPL could be sued by individual shareholders for loss of earnings caused by a lack of proper regulation by the governing bodies.

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CastofthousandsPosted on6:07 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Auldheid says:
March 6, 2014 at 5:52 pm

“I know which one we are living in which is why Resolution 12 to the Celtic AGM is so important.”
————————————–
Now that’s a pointy ended tactic. If a club were to challenge governing body decisions then there would be far more traction.

So much friction indeed that Celtic themselves, as has already been seen, would be cautious about taking it forward. If a form of words can be arrived at that asks a few uncomfortable questions without the messenger ending up dead, then it represents a viable way ahead.

I’ll have a look at Phil’s blog.

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TSFMPosted on6:11 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Auldheid
Res 12 is as you say important, but I am convinced that Celtic have no desire whatsoever to pursue its aims.
We could have a discussion about the possible reasons, but ultimately if DD is disinclined to seek a proper answer to these questions, then the SFA will dodge the bullet.
Thus my question to Campbellsmoney: do individual (or groups of) shareholders have locus to seek legal redress here?
Going at it in that fashion may even force Celtic and other clubs for that matter to come on board.

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CastofthousandsPosted on6:13 pm - Mar 6, 2014


wottpi says:
March 6, 2014 at 5:43 pm

“Just because they have income from a potential 40k fans per home game doesn’t give Rangers the right to lord it over anyone else and calling for them to come back in the exact same form as before is just madness. ”
——————————
I agree. I was merely quoting the real politique (good name for a five a side team). To bring about redistribution new horizons would have to be scanned. Something might turn up and in a fast changing world this is a possibility. If it doesn’t however then things are likely to gravitate toward the status quo. I’m not arguing for the return of the Ancien Regime but in the absence of an alternative vision then the future won’t look much different from the past.

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scottcPosted on6:28 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Castofthousands says:
March 6, 2014 at 5:21 pm

“Celtic and Scottish football will prosper if the money generated in the game is distributed more evenly.”
——————————–
I agree but this shouldn’t be down to Celtic’s magnanimity.

Very true. Remember however, that we used to share gate money. SPL took care of that one. Then the SPFL was born and it was not the first place team that lost the bulk of the winnings to the rest of the league, it was the team who would finish second. I don’t understand why the other teams voted for any of that to be honest

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AuldheidPosted on6:44 pm - Mar 6, 2014


TSFM

Maybe. But I think DD will be quite happy to use what emerges to suit Celtic’s purpose.

Apart from which he is not the only shareholder and has to have a reason to put to them to not pursue that is acceptable.

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valentinesclownPosted on6:58 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Jock Brown on bbc sportsound stated that smsm should be ashamed at the way they portrayed Fergus McCann back in the 90’s. Even mentioned the succulent lamb brigade. Smsm to this day are a shameful lot.

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wottpiPosted on6:59 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Castofthousands says:
March 6, 2014 at 6:13 pm

Happy to agree there doesn;t seem to be any obvious shift towards the changes that are required.

As for five-a-side teams I always liked Aston Bungalow, but also recall one tourney with some chancers named Inter Yermam 🙂

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ZilchPosted on7:37 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Castofthousands says:
March 6, 2014 at 5:21 pm

I agree but this shouldn’t be down to Celtic’s magnanimity. The other clubs need to force change. The non OF clubs are that used to being held in servitude that they have forgotten what it means to take what is rightfully theirs. The post Armageddon era might have been the opportunity for the balance to be redressed but the opportunity appears to have been missed. However, as you say, in the absence of competition Celtic WILL become complacent and their brand will stumble. That is why, despite public assertions to the contrary, they NEED Rangers. Without Rangers their business model doesn’t presently stack up despite what the current balance sheet says.
—————————————————————————————————————————————————-

Totally agree that there has to be a fundamental change in the distribution of resources.

Every fan of every team wants to see their team win. But winning is only meaningful and satisfying when there is a reasonably level playing field and a feasible prospect of losing. The feeling of victory is a heady mix of joy and relief.

Totally disagree that Celic’s business model means they need Rangers.

What Celtic need, along with every other team in Scottish football, is healthy competition.

This requires a financial structure that rewards success but encourages growth and regeneration at all levels. Most importantly, it has to punish financial doping and prevent the kinds of mismanagement that have caused so much damage to the credibility of the game in recent years.

It ought to be possible to come up with a financial structure in Scottish football that reflects a commitment to fair play and promotes growth of interest and investment in the game.

Would this affect Celtic’s business model? Almost certainly.

As a Celtic fan, is this something to fear? Yes and No.

No – because I have every confidence that the guys running my club are up to the task of ensuring that we are competitive on a level playing field.

Yes – because I have no faith that the field has been, is or would be level whilst Scottish football remains in the grip of the likes of CO and co.

So it all comes back to the same issue for me. You want things to improve for Scottish football? First thing we have to do is clear out the the guys that have brought it so low in the first place. Replace them with reputable people (Turnbull Hutton get my vote for President – possibly of Scotland??), and then get a plan worked out that builds the game on foundations that will stand the test of time: sporting integrity and financial fair play.

Scottish Football does not need the Old Firm, it needs to start believing in itself.
(copyright acknowledged – apologies for the poor attempt at forgery)

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nowoldandgrumpyPosted on7:39 pm - Mar 6, 2014


http://companycheck.co.uk/director/907403084

Iain Graham Wallace?

A Director in these companies. Does nobody use their full name, or is this someone different? Interesting that this guy has been a director of Rangers Retail Ltd since 16-01-2013
I have given up

RANGERS INTERNATIONAL FOOTBALL CLUB PLC
Age 1 years (Incorporation date 16/11/2012)
SC437060
Registered Address: Ibrox Stadium, 150 Edmiston Drive, Glasgow, G51 2XD

GARRION SECURITY SERVICES LIMITED
Age 1 years (Incorporation date 28/09/2012)

RANGERS RETAIL LIMITED
08142409
Registered Address: Unit A Brook Park East, Shirebrook, NG20 8RY

RANGERS MEDIA LIMITED
SC436460
Registered Address: Ibrox Stadium, 150 Edmiston Drive, Glasgow, G51 2XD

THE RANGERS FOOTBALL CLUB LIMITED
SC425159
Registered Address: Ibrox Stadium, 150 Edmiston Drive, Glasgow, G51 2XD
Rating Suspended – Negative Press Event

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AllyjamboPosted on7:59 pm - Mar 6, 2014


easyJambo says:

March 6, 2014 at 5:55 pm

But did LNS not state that as the EBTs were not deemed illegal they were open to every other club to use and, therefore, bizarrely, no sporting advantage was gained by their use. If they had been deemed ‘illegal’, then, by his reckoning, RFC would have been found guilty of gaining an unfair sporting advantage. I daresay LNS might not then have introduced the concept of ‘sporting advantage’, as, having done so, he would have had to rule against RFC and I don’t think that was part of his remit, or certainly not what the SPL/SFA wanted. Then, when we add to the mix that RFC had been found guilty of an offence ‘just short of match fixing’ for withholding payment of Tax and NIC, for half a season, how could the deliberate use of a tax evasion scheme lasting some ten years be seen as anything less? I think in the face of that they wouldn’t have even bothered with the Brysonism, as the registration part of their cheating would have been relatively inconsequential.

I think we took our eyes off the ball with the FTTT result, believing there was no escaping the registration cheatery; unfortunately the football governors kept their eyes firmly on it, and that gave them the opportunity to create a blueplan for the greatest comeback, ever.

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nowoldandgrumpyPosted on8:00 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Sorry for got to put the originator of this 😳

sevco then sevco now ‏@junglebhoy60

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jw hardinPosted on8:04 pm - Mar 6, 2014


If I were DD/PL I’d be using the threat to bring the house down as leverage for EPL entry.

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upthehoopsPosted on8:15 pm - Mar 6, 2014


James Forrest says:
March 6, 2014 at 5:14 pm
====================
That is an interesting piece. Even more so given I have known the author for many years!

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Resin_lab_dogPosted on8:31 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Not The Huddle Malcontent says:
March 6, 2014 at 4:53 pm

2

1

Rate This

___________________________________

TUPE will apply in a transfer of assets, i.e. a sale of the business. It is exactly what it was created to cover. Ergo Long serving TRFC veterans will be entitled to continuity of employment if they accepted TUPE, as will all of the Ibrox staff that sevco inherited. It comes down to their ‘job’ descriptions.Provided they are doing substantially equivalent roles in the new organisation, continuity of service will apply.
(They were of course all free to decline TUPE and leave at the point of acquisition).

TUPE legistlation was designed specifically with a view to foiling unscrupulous companies trying to circumvent redundancy costs by selling the business on just before making all the staff redundant.

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easyJamboPosted on8:38 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Allyjambo says: March 6, 2014 at 7:59 pm
===========================
You may well be correct, but I still think that the outcome of LNS would have been the same, unless a different charge had been lodged.

Some extracts from the LNS decision
“it is not the purpose of the Rules to regulate how one football club may seek to gain financial and sporting advantage over others.”
“Nor is it a breach of SPL or SFA Rules for a club to arrange its affairs – within the law – so as to minimise its tax liabilities.”
“Accordingly we proceed on the basis that the EBT arrangements were lawful.”
“What we are concerned with is the fact that the side-letters issued to the Specified Players, in the course of the operation of the EBT scheme, were not disclosed to the SPL and the SFA as required by their respective Rules.”
“Given that we have held that Rangers FC did not breach Rule D1.11 by playing ineligible players, it did not secure any direct competitive advantage in that respect.”
“If the breach of the rules by non-disclosure of the side-letters conferred any competitive advantage, that could only have been an indirect one.”
“Although it is clear to us from Mr Odam’s evidence that Oldco’s failure to disclose the side-letters to the SPL and the SFA was at least partly motivated by a wish not to risk prejudicing the tax advantages of the EBT scheme, we are unable to reach the conclusion that this led to any competitive advantage.”

If the EBTs had been declared “unlawful” at the FTT, I would have expected that a separate charge would have been raised for LNS or another tribunal to consider. However, I’m not sure that “unlawful” or “illegal” are the correct terms to use, unless it could be proved that those who set up the scheme knew from the start that the scheme was tax evasion. I can’t believe that those who were involved in setting up around 5,000 other EBT schemes all knew that what they implemented was tax evasion.

The FTT and UTT are not criminal actions that will produce a result of “unlawful” or “illegal”. They are civil processes that will only determine liability, i.e. whether on not Tax and NIC were due on the sums involved.

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coineanachantaighePosted on8:58 pm - Mar 6, 2014


StevieBC says:
March 6, 2014 at 5:31 pm
The Scottish Press Awards (aka Scottish football’s ‘The Razzies’)
++++++++++

Maybe TSFM should have its own award ceremony (you’ve already given a possible name) and send winners plastic/wooden/tin spoons?

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whispererPosted on9:26 pm - Mar 6, 2014


nowoldandgrumpy says:
March 6, 2014 at 7:39 pm
7 0 Rate This

http://companycheck.co.uk/director/907403084

Iain Graham Wallace? ……… So was he never a director at M.C.F.C. ?

and whatever happened to poster m.c.f.c. ?

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CastofthousandsPosted on9:27 pm - Mar 6, 2014


easyJambo says:
March 6, 2014 at 8:38 pm

““Given that we have held that Rangers FC did not breach Rule D1.11 by playing ineligible players, it did not secure any direct competitive advantage in that respect.””
———————————
I can go along with everything you say EJ. I don’t like it but I understand it. I can even understand that the operation of an EBT scheme might be side stepped by LNS since it introduced all manner of complications that would ensnare his decision.

It is however disconcerting that a club that likely did gain sporting advantage from a system of payments that other clubs did not have recourse to (for whatever reason), will have benefited from taking that commercial risk. However they will not be liable for the jeopardy of taking that commercial risk since they are now in liquidation. The liquidation process has insulated them from the repercussions of the risk taking. Murray Group may suffer sanctions but only if the UTT finds against them and even then the destination of the liability is not yet known.

That’s why I don’t like the quote from the LNS decision reproduced above. The mis-registration was THE opportunity to recognise multiple rule infringements. Even if EBT’s were put to one side, there was still a mechanism, I feel, to extract some form of justice. It may be possible to place an interpretation on the rules that makes this particular element consistent but for me it is not natural justice.

I find myself starting to agree with ecobhoy’s initial assessment of LNS. I don’t like it but I might be getting closer to understanding it. I still think it expedient to have glossed over the mis-registrations. It sets a poor precedent.

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parttimearabPosted on9:38 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Castofthousands says:
March 6, 2014 at 9:27 pm
The liquidation process has insulated them from the repercussions of the risk taking.
————————————————————————————

Job done Craig Whyte…..?

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ManolitoPosted on9:40 pm - Mar 6, 2014


This guy has a contact at the SFA. He’s been tweeting a couple of interesting things tonight.

moo ‏@moo_ted · 3 hrs
Interesting convo with my SFA contact today. 140 is not enough.

moo ‏@moo_ted · 3 hrs
Stewart Regan is definitely back from holiday and he is very much ” on duty ” . He has given out some serious directives to his staff !

moo ‏@moo_ted · 2h
My contact would normally give some info , but today he has said NO ONE WILL TALK for fear of dismissal . There really is serious shit ! ?

moo ‏@moo_ted · 2 hrs
@TheClumpany Yep. Never ever has my contact blanked me on SFA stuff. Today I am convinced there is serious stuff going on.

He followed by saying it was to do with res 12 and other stuff.
moo ‏@moo_ted · 2 hrs
@PLambie both. Res 12 and the Q’s that were asked of them by UEFA re same club/new club and sanctions they might give if any admin.

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John ClarkPosted on9:41 pm - Mar 6, 2014


For anyone still interested, I’ve added a continuation of my report of Wednesday’s business at the UTTT on the UTTT thread.I’ll finish the rest of Wednesday asap, and get Thursday’s (today’s) on tomorrow, and Friday’s on Friday evening-all going well. ( my son in the U.S skyped this evening, and tomorrow evening is our Oz skype night. Busy busy busy 🙂 .
As for today’s proceedings, it was like a TSFM convention! Superb.

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Lord WobblyPosted on9:48 pm - Mar 6, 2014


STEVIEBC says:
March 6, 2014 at 5:31 pm
11 0 Rate This
The Scottish Press Awards (aka Scottish football’s ‘The
Razzies’)
======================
The shortlist has just been announced!
Looks like Keith Jackson is going for 3-in-a-row as
‘Sports News Writer of the Year’, (no really).
But I think we should organise a campaign to register
complaints…
Jingle wasn’t even nominated for ‘Scoop of the Year’!
(PMcG : need to do better for him next year… )

http://www.scottishpressawards.co.uk/shortlist/index.html

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Incredibly, the nominations for Journalism Team of the Year recognises the in depth reporting on a football club in crisis! 😯

16. Journalism Team of the Year
The Courier Living with Dementia
Daily Record The Clutha Helicopter Tragedy
Edinburgh Evening News Edinburgh’s Sex Trade
Edinburgh Evening News Hearts in Crisis
Scottish Daily Mail Clutha
The Scottish Sun Clutha

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Not The Huddle MalcontentPosted on10:05 pm - Mar 6, 2014


easyJambo says:
March 6, 2014 at 5:25 pm
4 0 Rate This

Not The Huddle Malcontent says: March 6, 2014 at 4:53 pm

2. Will the hearts (4+1) players who were punted in admin have the value of their contract added to the football debts pile that must be paid – it’s not clear form your post easyjambo – or are they jsut getting the statutory pay and everyone is getting the approx 2 weeks owed for before admin?
=================================
They appear to be only entitled to the money they have already earned (2 weeks+) and the statutory redundancy payments.

I suspect that the players affected could probably submit a claim for the value of the remainder of their contract, but would end up as unsecured creditors and receive 0p in the pound like the rest of them.

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

hi easy, sorry if i’m being a bit thick here…but……i’m wondering if the players sacked by the admin, rather than being added to the creditors pile, have been added to the football debts and must be paid outwith the CVA by the FoH (which i understand they have agreed to do)

it’s clear some football debts are being paid, just not sure if those sacked in admin are included in that bill

also, someone asked where did the “football creditors bill” exist in the rules….my understanding is that Scotland has no football creditors bill (unlike the fa) in it’s rules, however, in practice it appears to have one

as for TUPE – i didn’t think Sevco bought rangers BUSINESS, just the assets, buying the business would mean they got the debts – No?

So, this was not a business and assets sale, just an assets sale. And whilst employees may have transferred over under the “guise” of TUPE – i.e. given same terms and conditions, it may be a sham TUPE and legally the employees may have no such protection for service.

I guess we won’t know until such an event arises.

But is it possible that sevco go into admin, players contracts breached – allowing cost cutting and the sfa can decide if these are football debts (to be honoured outwith a cva) or that it is ok to dump these players with minimum regulatory redundancy monies.

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Long Time LurkerPosted on10:12 pm - Mar 6, 2014


If you can – please try and attend the UTTT on Friday. Summing up likely to take place in the afternoon session. You can get a summary of the key points from the last 2 weeks, 126 George Street, Edinburgh.

It was good to meet other TSFM posters today.

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helpmaboabPosted on10:51 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Secularfootballfan-at 2:13pm
Proper leadership from the SFA could help as this should really be about investing in the league product.
……………
You ARE having a laugh, right?

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AuldheidPosted on10:58 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Allyjambo
Easyjambo

The term LNS used in his summing up was “not irregular” What did that mean?

He treated all ebts as not irregular but two of them were irregular when Rangers admitted by concealing side letters when specifically asked about their existence that the scheme had been operated irregularly.

So unless LNS wants to say ” not irregular” does not mean unlawful and explain why, especially when HMRC said Rangers had acted either fraudulently of negligently, but only negligence was needed to pursue payment, then to the man in the street Rangers operated a scheme that broke tax laws and so was unlawful

Now LNS might pull a rabbit out the Bryson hat and say irregular is only unlawful if fraud was involved.
But had Rangers appealed against QC advice they risked fraud being proved.
The big difference between the wee tax case and the big one is Rangers cannot claim they were negligent when they lied to HMRC.
LNS now looks to me like a giant squirrel that allowed the wee tax case to scurry underground undetected until now.

That is what the letter and Annexes strongly suggest.
All documents relating to ebts, which does not make any distinction in the definition, so means ALL ebts and related paperwork from 1st July 1998 was asked for.
It was not provided and the question is why and who benefitted from keeping it hidden?
Perhaps the President of the SFA with his experience of both ebt types should be asked to clarify. He may have a plausible answer.
Indeed if there is one perhaps the SPFL will break their silence or are they hoping the UTT result will get everyone off the hook they have placed themselves on.

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easyJamboPosted on11:03 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Not The Huddle Malcontent says: March 6, 2014 at 10:05 pm

hi easy, sorry if i’m being a bit thick here…but……i’m wondering if the players sacked by the admin, rather than being added to the creditors pile, have been added to the football debts and must be paid outwith the CVA by the FoH (which i understand they have agreed to do)

it’s clear some football debts are being paid, just not sure if those sacked in admin are included in that bill

also, someone asked where did the “football creditors bill” exist in the rules….my understanding is that Scotland has no football creditors bill (unlike the fa) in it’s rules, however, in practice it appears to have one

as for TUPE – i didn’t think Sevco bought rangers BUSINESS, just the assets, buying the business would mean they got the debts – No?

So, this was not a business and assets sale, just an assets sale. And whilst employees may have transferred over under the “guise” of TUPE – i.e. given same terms and conditions, it may be a sham TUPE and legally the employees may have no such protection for service.

I guess we won’t know until such an event arises.

But is it possible that sevco go into admin, players contracts breached – allowing cost cutting and the sfa can decide if these are football debts (to be honoured outwith a cva) or that it is ok to dump these players with minimum regulatory redundancy monies.
===============================
The latest two reports from BDO were dated 11th November 2013 (CVA proposal) and 31st January 2014 (Creditors Report). They are available on Scribd and the CVA proposal gives a list of all creditors and various bits of background information.

http://www.scribd.com/doc/211081083/2013-11-15-CVA-Proposal

http://www.scribd.com/doc/204800547/2014-01-31-BDO-Creditors-Report

In answer to your specific points, in the CVA proposal the amounts due to players are spit into a preferential element and an unsecured element. The preferential element is never more than £800 but I don’t know what that includes.

All the current and ex players are included in the list of unsecured creditors, but also forms part of the “football creditors”.

There is a reference to the SPFL/SFA rules can be found at 6.2 in the CVA doc and at Points 2 and 8 in the Creditors doc. There is no “football creditors”, rule but I can only surmise that the SFA/SPFL have indicated that there will be further sanctions on the club if the footballing debts are not paid off in full or by compromise agreement, by the new owner of the club (outside the CVA if necessary). Basically a “football creditors” rule by the back door.

IF TRFC is placed in admin, then the players contracts will be broken. Only earned income, but not paid, plus any statutory payments would have to be met by whoever takes ownership of the company via a CVA. Future contractual payments would be ditched.

Here is a list of the top player creditors (I don’t have a problem posting this information as it is a public document)
Mr Andrew Driver 114,603.69 Ex
Mr John William Sutton 20,492.34 Ex
Mr Andrew Webster 16,242.32 Ex
Mr Darren Barr 14,620.13 Ex
Mr Anrydas Novikovas 13,168.02 Ex
Mr Jamie Hamill 11,199.83
Mr Ryan Stevenson 11,099.83
Mr Marius Zaliukas 11,067.12 Ex
Mr Jamie Macdonald 11,067.00
Mr Mehdi Taouil 8,129.04 Ex
Mr Daniel Grainger 7,987.39 Ex
Mr Gary Locke 5,591.67
Mr Dylan McGowan 5,407.89
Mr Scott Robinson 5,200.00
Mr Jason Holt 4,862.36
Mr Mark Ridgers 4,598.43
Mr Callum Paterson 4,091.99
Mr Kevin Mchattie 3,772.73
Mr Jamie Walker 3,681.02
Mr David Smith 3,208.69
Mr Mark Keegan 3,000.00 Ex
Mr Marcus McMillan 3,000.00 Ex

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AuldheidPosted on11:04 pm - Mar 6, 2014


JWHardin.

If I were them that is what I would do. Either that or demand reform and resignations. Nicely.

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helpmaboabPosted on11:05 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Wottpi at 6:59pm

Five aside teams. The five-a-side league in the Evening Times was always good for a laugh with teams like. The Flying Teapots,The Betty Ford Clinic,Real Sosobad,Hangover 96, AC Milanda( for older bloggers)

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John ClarkPosted on11:23 pm - Mar 6, 2014


I’ve put on the last bit of Wednesday’s UTTT business .

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Resin_lab_dogPosted on11:26 pm - Mar 6, 2014


easyJambo says:
March 6, 2014 at 11:03 pm

1

0

Rate This

__________________________________

We’re redundancy notices and statutory payments made to the employees at the switchover? The alternative to TUPE was redundancy with statutory pay, or resignation. Ironically if there were insufficient funds to pay this then HMG would have to stump up for it.

The employee contracts could have been considered as ‘assets’, -or more properly ‘undertakings’ of the company its e.g. like when a firm outsources its IT department or catering / cleaning function and the staff move over to the new company.

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coineanachantaighePosted on11:31 pm - Mar 6, 2014


helpmaboab says:
March 6, 2014 at 11:05 pm
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

My favourite was surReal Madrid.

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ianagainPosted on11:46 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Speaking of 5 a side teams.

Should we not be thinking of putting a few drams away in a nearby hostelry for our court reporters for their time?

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helpmaboabPosted on11:56 pm - Mar 6, 2014


Coineanachantaighe

Yes.A belter.

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easyJamboPosted on1:06 am - Mar 7, 2014


Resin_lab_dog says: March 6, 2014 at 11:26 pm
We’re redundancy notices and statutory payments made to the employees at the switchover? The alternative to TUPE was redundancy with statutory pay, or resignation. Ironically if there were insufficient funds to pay this then HMG would have to stump up for it.

The employee contracts could have been considered as ‘assets’, -or more properly ‘undertakings’ of the company its e.g. like when a firm outsources its IT department or catering / cleaning function and the staff move over to the new company.

================================
I’m not sure what you mean by the switch over. When the club went into administration all but one of the redundancies were made the following day, with the one carried out the following week. Hearts had a whole raft of players that were out of contract last summer. These contracts would have run until 30th June. The club entered admin on 19th June, so those released (end of contract and redundancies)would have been entitled to wages from 1st – 18th June plus statutory redundancy payments.

The switchover (post CVA) to FoH hasn’t happened yet because of the slow admin processes for Ukio and UBIG, so all the football creditors remain unpaid.

There is no new company involved so there is no TUPE requirement. FoH (Bidco-Ann Budge) will only be assuming ownership by dint of obtaining the majority shareholdings from Ukio and UBIG (approx. 80%). Heart of Midlothian PLC hasn’t needed reincarnation.

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AuldheidPosted on1:20 am - Mar 7, 2014


For no other reason than I thought it interesting

Apparently it is true that the reality of the situation of Campbell Ogilvie’s re-election is/was that he was re-elected because there were no other candidates who were put forward or who put themselves forward.

OK I’ve heard that before, but I believe Turnbull Hutton,

The question is though, Why was that?

Fear or a reluctance to deal with the issues?

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StevieBCPosted on5:39 am - Mar 7, 2014


TARTANWULVER says: March 6, 2014 at 12:36 pm

…Queens Park Rangers finances in the Premier League 2012-13: Total turnover (income): £61m. Total wages £78m…
==============
Jeezo – what sort of wages is ‘Arry’s dug on then… ?! 🙄

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StevieBCPosted on5:52 am - Mar 7, 2014


A football club treats a fan properly – and with humour 🙂
=================================================
Amongst all the negativity enveloping TRFC – and the SFA / SPFL- this uplifting little story caught my eye.
Creative customer service follow up from a football club to turn a complaint into great PR.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/teams/wolverhampton-wanderers/10682018/Wolves-fan-the-winner-after-upside-down-shirt-prompts-swift-and-generous-response-from-the-club.html

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upthehoopsPosted on7:16 am - Mar 7, 2014


Some nice positive stuff in the media today about Coisty and ‘Mr’ Wallace sitting down to discuss next years transfer budget. Maybe it wont be so positive once there’s only two of them in the room! 😆

Happy Friday everyone!

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Bryce CurdyPosted on7:41 am - Mar 7, 2014


ALLYJAMBO 5:30 pm

I have reread LNS in full over the last couple of days. Paragraph [104] states the following:

Nor is it a breach of SPL or SFA Rules for a club to arrange its affairs – within the law – so as to minimise its tax liabilities. The Tax Tribunal has held (subject to appeal) that Oldco was acting within the law in setting up and operating the EBT scheme. The SPL presented no argument to challenge the decision of the majority of the Tax Tribunal and Mr McKenzie stated expressly that for all purposes of this Commission’s Inquiry and Determination the SPL accepted that decision as it stood, without regard to any possible appeal by HMRC. Accordingly we proceed on the basis that the EBT arrangements were lawful.

What also interests me is the fact that the panel were not specifically asked to judge whether EBT arrangements were lawful. They were asked to look at registration and player eligibility. In the event of a verdict in favour of HMRC the EBT payments would be deemed irregular and illegal. In such a scenario would the SPL be bound by a decision they had not specifically asked for?

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John ClarkPosted on7:48 am - Mar 7, 2014


My final pages of Wednesday’s UTTT proceedings was posted lastnight:still showing as being in Moderation, on UTTT thread?

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Bryce CurdyPosted on8:12 am - Mar 7, 2014


Continuing from 7:41 am.

We were all so outraged at the Bryson rule and McKenzie’s failure to challenge it (why not???) that we missed a slightly more subtle trick:

The panel had not been asked to establish the regularity of Rangers’ use of EBTs, so why did they opine at all given that the FTTT verdict was contentious and more importantly, under appeal. There was no need. At what point did McKenzie agree to be bound by the FTTT verdict, before or after it was made? And why agree to be bound regardless of appeal?

I would broadly agree with claims that the panel had little choice in relation to their decision about eligibility except to ask the question of whether ‘the Bryson rule’ was so bizarre that it should have been challenged by the panel even though McKenzie chose not to do so. Having revisited this what is troubling me more and more is the fact that the panel reached a verdict they were not asked to, namely the regularity of the EBT payments. All of the informed discussion prior to LNS was about how his panel and the FTTT were investigating two separate matters. And was Rod McKenzie merely incompetent or is there another explanation?

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ecobhoyPosted on8:31 am - Mar 7, 2014


Bryce Curdy says:
March 7, 2014 at 7:41 am

What also interests me is the fact that the panel were not specifically asked to judge whether EBT arrangements were lawful. They were asked to look at registration and player eligibility. In the event of a verdict in favour of HMRC the EBT payments would be deemed irregular and illegal. In such a scenario would the SPL be bound by a decision they had not specifically asked for?

================================================================
The LNS remit was to decide what SFA/SPL rules were broken on the evidence presented and to determine any penalties that should be applied or not within thw wide range which was available to them.

They were not asked to judge whether EBT payents were legal or not and, indeed, both the SPL and Rangers accepted they were to be treated as not illegal in line with the FTTT majority decision. If that is the evidence presented by all parties to a tribunal then it is invariably accepted by the tribunal.

There is also the slight problem that none of the three members afaik – but could be mistaken – have the required expertise/experience to determine complex tax issues which have their own separate legal system to make such judgements.

Even if LNS had been minded to take such a flight of fancy then how could he possibly have gathered the evidence with no power to compel witnesses to appear and none of the powers of HMRC and no access to the material seized in police raids.

But say LNS had ignored these little difficulties then how long would it have taken to arrive at a verdict given that we could still be 5 years away from one under the system actually designed to deal with tax issues and not football administration. There is also the cost issue which would have run into millions of £s and totally bankrupted Scottish Football.

Originally I was of the view that LNS shouldn’t conclude until after the FTTT Decision but I changed my mind after listening to the counter-srguments which were well-argued on here and elsewhere. The main thrust of which was they were separate issues and the two different procedures were not interlinked in a ‘legal’ sense is what my memory is dragging back.

I now believe I was wrong and shouldn’t have changed my mind but I have to be honest and say I didn’t know whether when the FTTT found as it did whether I would have accepted that or said a decision couldn’t be made until the appeals process was finally exhausted.

Perhaps the answer could have been a clause inserted into the LNS Decision that if the tax appeal process finally reversed the FTTT Decision – no matter what that Decision was – that the issue could have been looked at wrt penalties which might have been imposed.

Perhaps LNS and his two colleagues intimated something of the sort and, who knows, was that why Bryson was wheeled onto centre-stage with his fantasy that wasn’t tested in any way by the SPL. At the end of the day perhaps I didn’t appreciate just how deeply corrupted Scottish Football is and how enduringly rotten the Hampden core actually is.

Obviously I didn’t appreciate the DOS issue which has been so thoroughly exposed by Auldheid – always remember that at LNS DOS was mentioned by reference to it as an earlier scheme to that of the EBTs and as there was no information on it supplied then it was treated as similar for the purposes of LNS.

Was there no one in that room who knew the fundamental difference between DOS and EBT schemes at that time? I very much doubt it and it became part of the shameful cover-up which continues to this day.

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Greenock JackPosted on8:40 am - Mar 7, 2014


Auldheid
For no other reason than I thought it interesting

Apparently it is true that the reality of the situation of Campbell Ogilvie’s re-election is/was that he was re-elected because there were no other candidates who were put forward or who put themselves forward.

OK I’ve heard that before, but I believe Turnbull Hutton,

The question is though, Why was that?

Fear or a reluctance to deal with the issues?
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Campbellsmoney is a welcome addition to the blog. He speaks about complicated issues in a simple, concise and straightforward manner. He is able to do so because his analysis and conclusions come accross as being conducted in a professional manner, detached from any conflict.

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ecobhoyPosted on8:56 am - Mar 7, 2014


Bryce Curdy says:
March 7, 2014 at 8:12 am

We were all so outraged at the Bryson rule and McKenzie’s failure to challenge it (why not???) that we missed a slightly more subtle trick:

At what point did McKenzie agree to be bound by the FTTT verdict, before or after it was made? And why agree to be bound regardless of appeal?

And was Rod McKenzie merely incompetent or is there another explanation?
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I have made a point of speaking to people who are in a position to judge McKenzie’s abilities and I don’t think that is where the problem lies. Quite simply McKenzie’s role is to follow his client’s instructions and we don’t know what these were.

In general I believe the legal research and evidence gathering was abysmal and that certainly created the impression that McKenzie presented the case poorly. But he wasn’t responsible for collecting the evidence that was down to the lawyers who would have been working directly with the SPL and one would also assume the SFA.

It would appear the Bryson Definition arrived like a bolt out of the blue so to speak 😉 But that should have been uncovered prior to the LNS Hearing when all the witnesses were precognosed and chapter and verse should have been prepared as to whether the all-important Bryson Definition actually was the official SFA position or whether just a witness spouting nonsense in the box.

Who knows – I certainly don’t and nothing since his provided any clues. However if McKenzie’s instructions were to accept the definition without any real challenge then he might have looked stupid and inept but hey that’s why lawyers get big bucks. They take the bullets to protect their clients.

As always I add the caveat that we are only seeing the LNS Decision and Hearing from a very restricted viewpoint as there is no transcript of the proceedings and all sorts of documentary evidence such as Counsels’ statements and skeleton arguments have also not been revealed. I am also sure that there may have been plenty of questions put by LNS to clarify certain issues that would greatly clarify his thinking and decisions and that of his two colleague.

But we are left with a very basic skeleton which leaves many imponderables which might have been easily and rationally explained if we knew what had actually happened and was said during the Hearings.

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TartanwulverPosted on9:04 am - Mar 7, 2014


Greenock Jack says:
March 7, 2014 at 8:40 am
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Campbellsmoney is indeed a welcome addition, as he/(she?) obviously has a good background knowledge of some detailed aspects relevant to this blog. Then again, over time, most of us have had the opportunity, to a greater or lesser degree, to contribute on some aspect or another in which we have some specialised knowledge, which is a strength of the blog format. But surely another strength of it is the chance to float ideas and see what support or criticism they attract? If a suggestion turns out to be weak, it will usually get found out fairly quickly, but there have been several seemingly out-there ideas that have turned out to have a basis in fact as the saga has developed. I would also say that the blog format gains from people who are willing to take a sceptical view, so I don’t mean to belittle your own contribution GJ.

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CampbellsmoneyPosted on9:04 am - Mar 7, 2014


Regarding TUPE

I posted before about this. The transfer in 2012 from the administrators of assets and “history” (just in case there be any doubt – “history” is not an asset in Scots law and so cannot be transferred from A to B) to what was then Sevco was a TUPE transfer.

It does not matter whether it was described (in the agreement, in the media or indeed by anybody involved) as “an asset transfer”, ” a business transfer”, ” a fairytale transfer” or “a club transfer”. What matters is what moved from A to B. If what moved was an “undertaking” then its a TUPE transfer whether anyone wants it to be or not. Its not a matter of choice for those involved.

Whether an “undertaking” exists is a matter of fact. One definition is “an economic entity”. Another is an “organised grouping of resources”. Whatever. There is not doubt that what occurred was a TUPE transfer. Any other suggestion is preposterous.

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bluPosted on9:24 am - Mar 7, 2014


Greenock Jack says:
March 7, 2014 at 8:40 am
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GJ, Campbell Ogilvie was a long-standing employee of RFC who had significant responsibilities for player contracts for the club. When the RTC raised the profile of RFC’s tax evasion and avoidance schemes he eventually admitted that he was the beneficiary of an EBT many years after he left Rangers and continues to be so as the President of the rule-making body that governs Scottish football. Two questions – why was he so reluctant to admit to something if there was no problem with it? Why did he not stand down from his position when there was even the perception of conflict of interest on his part in the SFA’s dealings in respect of RFC’s player registrations?

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CampbellsmoneyPosted on9:45 am - Mar 7, 2014


coineanachantaighe says:
March 6, 2014 at 11:31 pm
8 0 i
Rate This

helpmaboab says:
March 6, 2014 at 11:05 pm
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My favourite was surReal Madrid.

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Borussia Marchmontgladbach

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Greenock JackPosted on9:45 am - Mar 7, 2014


TW
The jist of what I was saying is based on my analysis of historical posts on the blog.

Regarding the correspondence that Auldheid sent to H&M, I think two issues come into play.

1. Professional expertise in relevent area.
2. Conflict of interest.

There has obviously been many hours of determined effort go into building a “case” to challange the status quo. However, will it or did it ever have a chance of prospering?

Going back to recent exchanges on TSFM, I think they show an understandable lack of precise professional knowledge and a difficulty in accepting a situation for what it is (eg.H&M position). When I say “conflict”, I refer to a pre-conceived result and a subsequent jigsaw fit.

Not many will enjoy this post but that only helps highlight the two headline issues I list above.

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