Scottish Football and the case for a Bismarck!

Bybroganrogantrevinoandhogan

Scottish Football and the case for a Bismarck!

Good Evening.

When considering any type of protracted negotiation or discussion that seems to be going on too long, there is a story that is always worth remembering– whether it is actually a true story or not as the case may be.

It is said, that heads of state all met at a congress in what is now modern Germany sometime after the Franco Prussian war of 1870-1871.The entire congress was being run almost singlehandedly by the then Prussian Chancellor Otto von Bismark and he was keen to get all the necessary signatures on paper to seal some deal or other.

However, others at the congress were not too keen to sign up to certain elements of the proposed deal and so they hithered and dithered and in the eyes of Bismark they simply waisted time by concentrating on the minutiae- the little matters, with a view to ensuring their own interests were best served in these small areas– and did not focus on the big issue.

Having tried to talk these others round and educate them in his own beliefs and point of view on the bigger picture without any success, Bismark grew weary of the continuing delay and the posturing of his colleagues. All attempts at reason and diplomacy had failed in his eyes and so he decided to take a different tack.

Accordingly, it is said that whilst others were still inside debating endlessly on this matter or that, Bismark left the building and began simply shooting the windows in with the aid of a riffle which he just happened to have handy.

Those inside were naturally alarmed at this turn of events. They soon forgot about the minutiae under debate, they abandoned the previously expressed self interest and simply signed up so that they could get away from the mad chancellor and his house.

Job done so to speak.

Whilst I do not in anyway condone the behaviour of Otto von Bismark in this instance, and have no doubt that he was an autocrat, what I will say is that he believed that there was too much time being spent on the unimportant stuff and not enough time recognising what really needed doing– from his point of view of course.

Today– and it seems every day for months— we have endless debate about the future of Scottish Football. League reconstruction and the redistribution of footballing wealth has become a marathon– even before it has started.

Yet I believe that at the moment all parties concerned are not focusing on the radical reform that is fundamentally needed which is the creation of one, strong, properly structured and constituted body which is capable of the proper and ethical governance of Scottish Football and the business that surrounds football.

No matter what system you try, or distribution you agree, without proper sensible strong governance you are wasting your time.

Further, whatever body is set up, and whoever is chosen to be its CEO (or whatever the head honcho is going to be called), they must tackle the issue of corporate and fiscal compliance and the proper administration of any body corporate which actively takes part in Scottish Football– and that includes any such body or person who is involved in the running of a member club.

In addition, in so dealing with any corporate malfeasance or chicanery or whatever, the rules have to be applied with a rod of iron by an iron body.

As we can now clearly see, Football clubs and football in general is not, and never will be, immune from the effects of bad corporate governance and on occasion downright manipulation of facts, figures and contracts.

Whilst great play has been made of the fact that Gavin Masterton has handed over his shares in Dunfermline FC ( or its holding company ) the fact of the matter is that this in no way solves the problem faced by the football club. Whoever gains control of that club will still have to rent the ground from Mr Masterton’s company– and it is a rent that the club may just not be able to afford.

Ever!

It is only my opinion of course, but I am of the view that Mr Masterton has sealed a loan deal with his bankers which is of a type and duration which could not normally be achieved by other borrowers. The Loan has a lengthy period during which no repayments are necessary and interest can continue to accrue.

All very good you may say, but the level of debt concerned is not one that appears to be sustainable by Dunfermline FC and so whoever buys the club as a going concern ( if anyone buys it at all ) will have to pay an agreed rental to Gavin Masterton– and if the rental is not sufficient to repay Mr Masterton’s lenders, then I suspect that the end game here will be a search to find a buyer for the ground at some point over the next twenty years or so, with the hope that as part of the deal a space will be found somewhere for a new ground like New St Mirren park– the difference being that in that instance St Mirren were in charge of their future whereas Dunfermline are not.

The Governance of that club and the financial arrangements behind the club should have been looked at and examined by the SFA long before now– and the Dunfermline fans warned about the dangers of any such arrangements. Effectively those finance arrangements, should they continue, will probably mean that the club will have no option but to move from its established home!

All to suit one man!

Thankfully Dundee were spared a full takeover by Giovanni Di Stefano, however is it not a bit worrying that this man who has been jailed for over 14 years for various fraudulent acts, was allowed to roam around Scottish Football for a prolonged period?

Not so long ago Di Stefano did play a part at Dens, was in line to buy almost 30% of the shareholding, and was oft quoted in the papers and so on. The thing is that there were those who were prepared to give him a place at the Dundee table and in so doing invited him into Scottish Football.

Surely the SFA, had they been inclined to, could quite easily have pointed out that many of the claims of Mr Di Stefano were at least dubious if not completely incorrect? Yet nothing was being said at the time and silence prevailed.

Whilst not in the same calibre as Di Dtefano, Vladimir Romanov has now been at Hearts for a prolonged period. While I have no quibbles about the legality of Romanov’s takeover of Hearts, any money of a sizeable size which is transferred into Scotland from a foreign country will be subject to scrutiny by the Crown office to ensure that it is clean. Lithuania in particular is said to have a banking system which is governed loosely and sometimes does not meet the compliance standards expected in this country.

With his bank having gone bust, Romanov still retains the majority shareholding at Tynecastle, but there are questions still to be answered about what has happened at Hearts but life will be very different for the Edinburgh club going forward.

Again– could the SFA have done more to monitor the situation and could they have demanded clarity and detail from the Hearts owner as to his business dealings and the detailed arrangements with his bank?

At Ibrox, well things just go from the weird and inexplicable to downright astonishing– and all through a tremendous amount of smoke and mirrors.

It is clear that the SFA have no idea what to believe from Charles Green or for that matter Craig Whyte. On the face of it, there are clear links between Whyte and Green with the former paying over a six figure sum in return for absolutely nothing it would appear– with similar transactions going between Whyte’s colleague, Aiden Early, and Charles Green.

What is clear is that Green gave a clear undertaking to the SFA that he had nothing whatsoever to do with Whyte and would have nothing to do with Whyte going forward. Now, at the very least he is admitting that he met Whyte on several occasions, and whilst he may have made representations to Craig Whyte— these were all lies designed only to get Whyte to where Green wanted him.

This is hardly the act of someone who has been bona fides in his business dealings either with Whyte or with the SFA as the licensing body.

It is against this background that the Scottish Football Agencies need to wake up before they find the fans of the game ( at least those who want to stay interested in the game ) doing a Bismarck and panning in the windows of this whole house of cards.

Football Clubs, football fans, and indeed football itself needs protected from the financial and corporate shenanigans, and the governing body must be much more active and permanently vigilant in watching out for and if necessary anticipating the people and the transactions which have and will jeopardise clubs and the game in general going forward.

It is clearly no longer acceptable to rely on self regulation or mere declarations and undertakings from the clubs themselves. The Administrators must be much more active and employ far greater professional expertise in carrying out an almost constant analytical and reporting function in relation to club finance and corporate regulation.

All and any changes in funding, boardroom changes, investor changes and anything else major should be the subject of immediate and proper scrutiny by the SFA and there should be fair, immediate and stiff sanctions for non compliance, and any type of dilatory behaviour on the part of club officials who would seek to conceal the truth or who fail to properly disclose vital matters which should be out in the open.

Further, the funding detail– such as the never ending loan re Dunfermline should be a matter of public record in all its detail so that fans and investors can make information based value judgements when dealing with any club.

Such stiffer regulation should not develop into anything like a corporate witch hunt or any kind of draconian big brother syndrome, however the need for change given all of the current troubles is obvious to one and all.

Further, the attempted fudge surrounding Rangers league status last summer and the ongoing disquiet surrounding the position of Campbell Ogilvie does nothing to boost faith in and the reputation of Football Administration in Scotland.

Things are far from clear and there appears to be continual dithering and fudging. No one has any idea where the Nimmo Smith Report has gone nor what import it is to have— if any. Why is that?

Dithering and bumbling over detail is no longer an option. Strong clear governance is required to protect the game from being hijacked by those who have their own corporate and financial agendas.

Such people cannot be allowed to determine the way Scottish Football runs  or to conduct themselves in a fashion that leaves football and everyone involved in limbo.

It is time for Scottish Football to find its own Iron Chancellor!  There is a need for someone who will, if necessary, come along and shoot the lights out of any club or Company Director who wishes to play fast and loose with the game of football.

About the author

broganrogantrevinoandhogan author

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

5,402 Comments so far

jerfeelgoodPosted on7:11 pm - Apr 28, 2013


ecobhoy says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 17:29

I find this slightly misleading. The £17m from institutional investors was not yet in their accounts, and was subject to the AIM flotation going ahead, which was not guaranteed at the time of publication, yet the statement re enough working capital for 12 months is declarative, not conditional. It says right there in B4a that cenkos has “conditionally” placed the shares. I’d imagine that the condition was that the share issue actually go ahead.

Between B4a and B11 there is a summary of the accounts of Rangers for a three month period to August. Reading that document I would conclude from the accounts that the statement re working capital is true and not dependent on the placement share capital.

It goes ahead to say in E3 of the summary that there are conditions under which the placement might not happen. By stating that the placement might not happen, shows in my book that the capital to be realised is not yet locked in, and therefore could not be accounted as a current asset. That’s why it’s not listed in the accounts at B7. Also future season book money cannot be listed as a current asset. The statement at B11 reads that they unconditionally have enough capital to hand at the time of publication to see out 12 months of normal operations.

Now I’m not an accountant, or a lawyer, but that statement re working capital seems to be deliberately wrong. If one were to take neepheids numbers on board (and if they are anywhere near to true), then without season book money this summer the club will, at current expenses, have burned through all the cash from the IPO by September. Which is less than the 12 months stated.

I agree with you that it’s all about how much cash is in the bank now. And whether the losses continue unabated. But if and when the wheels come unglued, me feels that institutional investors from london are going to want their cash back, and if it comes down to it they will grasp at every legal straw to do so. It won’t be SDM writing off huge swathes of losses via MIH.

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angus1983Posted on7:31 pm - Apr 28, 2013


liveinhop says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 19:11

have hibs also qualified for Europe next season
——

As (at worst) runners-up in the Scottish Cup, I guess so?

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liveinhopPosted on7:41 pm - Apr 28, 2013


Thanks angus 1983

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SeniorPosted on7:50 pm - Apr 28, 2013


Some times I despair. Does anyone suggest for a moment that if Green and his buddy held the legitimate deeds of Ibrox etc. they could actually be shown the door.
Green was part of a pretty good sting until he got too greedy.
There is a prima facie case that the deeds are held by Whyty the bete noire of the SFA, yet the club is allowed to operate as normal and the company is still listed on the AIM,go figure!.

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SmugasPosted on7:52 pm - Apr 28, 2013


Yes, they’ve qualified already

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liveinhopPosted on7:57 pm - Apr 28, 2013


Thank you

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cowanpetePosted on8:02 pm - Apr 28, 2013


yourhavingalaugh says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 18:1

Anyone know how many Champion League places Scottish football has for season 13/14
===
this site is always worth reading on anything to do with UEFA competitions:
http://kassiesa.home.xs4all.nl/bert/uefa/

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SeniorPosted on8:03 pm - Apr 28, 2013


Oh by the way Lunny is a master of distraction.
He slaps a three game ban on N Lennon for something every red-blooded manager in football does on a weekly basis – even Arsene Wenger is known to swear!!
Of course this is a distraction ( a pretty good one, look at the reaction it elicited)
The other distraction is, that a team who have beaten the best team in the world CL, win the SPL, possibly win the Scottish Cup have not one player short-listed for Player of the Year.
It has to be a distraction nothing else makes sense. ,

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cowanpetePosted on8:09 pm - Apr 28, 2013


angus1983 says:
liveinhop says:
have hibs also qualified for Europe next season
——
As (at worst) runners-up in the Scottish Cup, I guess so?
==========
Not seen it confirmed anywhere official. For years the runner-up got a UEFA place if the Cup winner had already qualified for the CL. e.g. QoS 3 or 4 years ago. There was talk of changing it (the SFA awards the UEFA places) but I do not know if it went through or not.
This guy’s saying it so my confidence is high!
http://kassiesa.home.xs4all.nl/bert/uefa/qual2013.html

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bobferrisPosted on8:20 pm - Apr 28, 2013


A club record also occurred at Alloa Athletic yesterday when 15 year old Scott Hynd played the final fourteen minutes against Albion Rovers.

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wottpiPosted on8:38 pm - Apr 28, 2013


Maybe just me but a few weeks ago I hear Kenny Shiels bubbling away in a Sportsound post match interview how he was responsible for Killie’s defeat. Don’t know why but something made me think he was looking for a way out and had his eye on McCoists job.

Just a theory but I’ve just got a feeling you may see the guy at Ibrox sometime soon.

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abigboydiditandranawayPosted on9:02 pm - Apr 28, 2013


yeh!
but not straight into the ahem!…champions league…
errrr…3rd qualifying round…

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jimlarkinPosted on9:02 pm - Apr 28, 2013


wottpi @ 20.38
that’s an interesting thought !

————

a sevconian blooger on the ibrokes-noyz

can’t make up his mind about just how bad a manager bfAM is.
maybe he should check out the calibre of the 2 part time teams which took maximum points this season, from sevco fc, who have the 2nd highest wage bill in scottish football…

————

[just as well it not – ibrokes-noisettes – fatsally would be lurking about…]
noun – A chocolate made with hazelnuts!!!!

http://www.ibroxnoise.co.uk/2013/04/the-chaos-theory-of-ibrox.html?

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Sugar DaddyPosted on9:05 pm - Apr 28, 2013


jerfeelgood says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 19:11
2 0 Rate This
ecobhoy says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 17:29

The potential for investors wanting their money back if the IPO was flawed, is central to any reasonable board deciding not to spend more of the IPO money as they have a potential liability that could materially affect the well being of the company.

Journalists,

Yesterday I suggested you ask how Rangers were going to fund next season’s campaign.

Tonight I ask if you if the Rangers board will confirm they will not spend another penny of the IPO cash until the Sevco 5088 issue is resolved to all parties satisfaction.

Good luck.

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CastofThousandsPosted on9:19 pm - Apr 28, 2013


Senior says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 19:50

“Some times I despair. Does anyone suggest for a moment that if Green and his buddy held the legitimate deeds of Ibrox etc. they could actually be shown the door.
Green was part of a pretty good sting until he got too greedy.
There is a prima facie case that the deeds are held by Whyty the bete noire of the SFA, yet the club is allowed to operate as normal and the company is still listed on the AIM,go figure!.”

________________

For the dummies in the audience Senior, can I attempt an inept translation.

1. “Does anyone suggest for a moment that if Green and his buddy held the legitimate deeds of Ibrox etc. they could actually be shown the door.”

(i) The reason Green and Ahmed are gone is because Craig Whyte must indeed (see what I did there) have a claim on Sevco 5088/Scotland’s assets.

Or

(ii) It would be silly to oust them since The Club would then have to gain a lease on their own stadium.

Or

(iii) Something else altogether since surely if they did own the deeds then these would be tied into one of The Club’s Owning/Holding companies?

2. “Green was part of a pretty good sting until he got too greedy.”

Dunno what you mean here at all. I didn’t realise Charles’ scheme was as ingenious as you imply. What was the tipping point that identifies where he became “…too greedy.”

3. “There is a prima facie case that the deeds are held by Whyty the bete noire of the SFA, yet the club is allowed to operate as normal and the company is still listed on the AIM,go figure!.”

So this sounds like hypothesis (i) above.

Hmm? So I’m thinking you’re saying that the trading on the AIM, even with Whyte having an interest in the deeds, is still well founded.

Hmm? Does that mean that far from being in dispute, Whyte owning the deeds is a recognisable aspect of the arrangement?

I’ve tried my best Senior. You must be slitting you’re wrists by now. Maybe rather than being erudite and conversational you might slip into the mundane vernacular to facilitate those of lesser wit, like myself and possibly some others.

I read that thing on chaos theory earlier. It may have made an impact.

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upthehoopsPosted on9:40 pm - Apr 28, 2013


By my reckoning it is 58 days since Chris Graham rather smugly informed the world there were ‘no clouds over Ibrox’. I wonder what state of affairs would prompt Chris to reconsider his view, or perhaps he just listens to the bits of the weather forecasts that suit him.

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paulsatimPosted on9:55 pm - Apr 28, 2013


upthehoops says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 21:40

Not as long as it takes Mr Lunney to charge anyone connected to sevcovia for bringing game into disrepute.

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SeniorPosted on9:59 pm - Apr 28, 2013


Mullach

you must be into your dotage if you call my musings erudite and conversational I thank you for the complement though.
Me thinks you are mischievous or a person with a lot of time on his/her hands. I think the purpose of most forums is to provide a stage for all types of contributions. The last thing this forum needs is a nit-picking censorious poster who, rather than keeping there eye on the big picture patrols the blog for minor spelling or grammatical errors. You criticize me of not posting in the vernacular . I think my post was ok, my English may not be the best, I am not English btw. On balance though I think it good enough to not have elicited such a snobbish priggish attempt of a put-down by you..

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jean7brodiePosted on10:04 pm - Apr 28, 2013


Senior says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 21:59

Well said, Senior.

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nowoldandgrumpyPosted on10:06 pm - Apr 28, 2013


wottpi says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 20:38

Rumours are that he has already been offered the Sevco job for next season

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dedeideoprofundisPosted on10:18 pm - Apr 28, 2013


ecobhoy says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 15:27

‘The Company has also today entered into the Placing Agreement, pursuant to which Cenkos Securities has, as agent for the Company, conditionally
arranged to place 24,242,857 Placing Shares at the Placing Price of 70 pence each with institutional investors. Cenkos Securities has received firm placing letters from placees in respect of the Placing Shares. The Placing Shares will represent approximately 42.0 per cent. of the Enlarged Share Capital and will raise approximately £17.0 million (approximately £15.0 million net of expenses).”
==========================
So if it’s a given that Institutions invested £17m in a 4th div club, they really must have thought that they were going to make money for their shareholders. I think this begs the question re how much money is made for investors in a successful SPL club. Any idea?

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wottpiPosted on10:22 pm - Apr 28, 2013


nowoldandgrumpy says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 22:06

So its not just me then.

I have nothing to back my theory but just had a gut feeling about Shiels and Rangers.
Don’t know why and can;t explain it.

Despite it sounding like he was the worst manager in the world I still felt the interview was like a bit of an advert. And if its not Killie then where else is there to go in Scotland.

Could be well off the mark.

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neepheidPosted on10:23 pm - Apr 28, 2013


Mullach- “Maybe rather than being erudite and conversational” ????? Surely erudite is the antithesis of conversational? Or is that me being erudite? As opposed to conversational? Or maybe I just move in the wrong circles- well ok, that’s kind of a given. And I don’t think there are any “dummies” in the audience, by the way.

Anyway, back to reality-

“nowoldandgrumpy says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 22:06

Rumours are that he has already been offered the Sevco job for next season”

Now where does that come from? It would be very interesting to know exactly who at Ibrox is in a position to offer anyone a job right now. Especially Ally’s job. Getting rid of him won’t come cheap.

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SeniorPosted on10:26 pm - Apr 28, 2013


Mullach.

One other thing. To use the term ‘slitting of wrists’ on this forum to get your point across is beneath contempt. You are a very lucky person that hasn’t come into contact with the scourge of modern society – suicide. If you did I’m sure you would not have used such a crude term so recklessly.

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jimlarkinPosted on10:35 pm - Apr 28, 2013


wottpi@22.22

maybe it has something to do with the part of the world that he comes from ?!

[antagonistic to celtic’s manager from the same “area”]

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timtimPosted on10:50 pm - Apr 28, 2013


Getting rid of McCoist may be cheaper than keeping him
£750k pa and his demands for a big cheque book plus his backroom team
Of course without him who will plead with the fans to part with their SB money
and convince them the board are trustworthy ?
McCoist will stay til the SB money is in at least then his jaiket is on the shoogly peg.

Another thing thats confusing me is Dave King ,iirc he was still on the board of oldco
when it collapsed , lots of talk of him returning to the scene of the crime,but can he?
Is there not a rule that forbids any director who was involved with oldco
coming back to a newco ? Yes I know rules can be bent to accomodate such chaps
who are the fabric of our society (even if they are glib and shameless liars)
They really do need to cut the ties to all involved with oldco but I cannot see the
fans funding the club* without their figureheads Walter and Ally involved.
So many twists and turns still to come ,gonnae be a long hot summer

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ecobhoyPosted on11:04 pm - Apr 28, 2013


jerfeelgood says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 19:11

ecobhoy says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 17:29
=================================================================

If the AIM Flotation hadn’t gone ahead then Rangers would have financially collapsed. Every flotation Prospectus has to have standard warning clauses just as the Rangers one had in case of that eventuality. It’s called covering your back.

‘What if’ or ‘What about’ didn’t happen – by and large Rangers had a successful share flotation and should have had plenty of working capital to get through next season IMO if costs had been drastically cut. Perhaps some people don’t like that but it’s a fact. I personally was very surprised at the amount of institutional money raised.

But Green is excellent at raising money through flotations and that’s why he was picked to do the job.

It’s a valid area for speculation as to why Green didn’t cut costs as he knew it had to be done but he didn’t do it and that’s one of the mysteries of this affair from my point of view.

You stated that: ‘The £17m from institutional investors was not yet in their accounts’ . That’s correct, on the day the prospectus was published, but the the promise of having sufficient capital available wasn’t that it was there for ONE day but that it would be sufficient for the 12 months ahead.

So there was plenty of time for the Flotation money to be paid into Rangers and I think that was done by early January 2013 from memory. You have to remember that Rangers did have enough money to run until the Flotation proceeds came through because of the money raised by shares sold (pre-RIFC Plc flotation) in TRFCL.

You say: ‘If one were to take neepheids numbers on board (and if they are anywhere near to true), then without season book money this summer the club will, at current expenses, have burned through all the cash from the IPO by September. Which is less than the 12 months stated. ”

But you appear to miss the point that another share sale could take place after 20 December and not breach the Prospectus ‘promises’ so even if neepheid is spot-on with his figures then we are only talking about covering 3-4 months of ‘burn’.

I think it’s obvious that costs will be slashed so the burn-rate will reduce and then there’s the sale of STs for this season. They can easily get to January 2014 in my estimation.

But that scenario is just speculation because the game plan, as far as outsiders can see, has totally changed. Other factors have come into play so it’s all conjecture and deciding how many angels can dance on the point of a needle. That’s fine if you enjoy that kind of discussion but I have seen so many people give dates for when Rangers were going to run out of cash it’s becoming tiresome. Personally I don’t think it will – this particular entity might run out of cash but another will take its place and be taken by the hand by the SFA.

That’s the reality and that’s why I feel discussions about the ‘working capital’ are not only pointless but miss the actual point. There’s still money to be made out of Rangers and till it’s stripped bare we won’t even get a sniff of the end-game unless one of the investigations drops a bombshell.

I wouldn’t worry about the institutional investors because they know what they’re doing – they won’t lose a penny. Some of their clients might but hey some you win and some you lose. That’s what gambling on share prices is all about and even losses can be handy sometimes for taxation purposes.

The only legal straw that investors have is if RIFC Plc and/or its subsidiaries doesn’t actually own the assets. Personally I doubt that will ever come to a civil action as agreements will probably be reached. But SFO and others may yet take a serious look and act and that fear is what is creating the pressure IMO.

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bangordubPosted on11:14 pm - Apr 28, 2013


Does anyone know the number of a decent armchair supplier and home delivery popcorn sevice?

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ecobhoyPosted on11:20 pm - Apr 28, 2013


dedeideoprofundis says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 22:18

So if it’s a given that Institutions invested £17m in a 4th div club, they really must have thought that they were going to make money for their shareholders. I think this begs the question re how much money is made for investors in a successful SPL club. Any idea?
————————————————————————————————————————

Taking football clubs to market used to be the flavour of the month and I think there was 30 odd listed clubs in the UK.

For a variety of reasons football investments do not earn profits for shareholders and don’t pay dividends but as long as they are fans it doesn’t actually matter.

We are currently left with Celtic, Rangers and Arsenal listed on a UK market and Arsenal isn’t really a company where shares are traded publicly. Man Utd is on the NYSE. Every other club has fled the ‘market’ so go figure. Getting the institutions to invest in Rangers was brilliant salesmanship by Green and I will say again – love him or loathe him – he is brilliant at raising flotation cash – he’s the goto guy.

Just what those Rangers institutional investors are thinking privately now – well I think I know 🙂 But they are all trying to decide when to make the jump and it appears there could be buyers coming in to the market. But of course that could be all smoke and mirrors fed by a compliant MSM who are criminally thick.

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nowoldandgrumpyPosted on11:36 pm - Apr 28, 2013


For anyone using twitter have a look at @corsica1968 timeline, real interesting info he is providing

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HirsutePursuitPosted on11:47 pm - Apr 28, 2013


dedeideoprofundis says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 22:18
0 0 Rate This
ecobhoy says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 15:27

‘The Company has also today entered into the Placing Agreement, pursuant to which Cenkos Securities has, as agent for the Company, conditionally
arranged to place 24,242,857 Placing Shares at the Placing Price of 70 pence each with institutional investors. Cenkos Securities has received firm placing letters from placees in respect of the Placing Shares. The Placing Shares will represent approximately 42.0 per cent. of the Enlarged Share Capital and will raise approximately £17.0 million (approximately £15.0 million net of expenses).”
==========================
So if it’s a given that Institutions invested £17m in a 4th div club, they really must have thought that they were going to make money for their shareholders. I think this begs the question re how much money is made for investors in a successful SPL club. Any idea?
=============================================================
If you think that Craig Whyte was involved in the formation of Sevco 5088 and this was intended to be the new Rangers, he would have personally faced several problems. Section 216 3(b) of the Insolvency Act is particularly relevant.

It would be a mistake, I think, to imagine that Craig Whyte is the only person whose involvement in the formation of the new Rangers needs to be hidden from sight.

It would also be a mistake to think that the various fund managers who apparently made the decision to “invest” in Sevco did so on behalf of hundreds or thousands of investors in a commercially viable transaction.

Instead, think of the “institutional investors” as representing a very small number of people (perhaps just 1) who need to remain anonymous; but was/were prepared to put money in Sevco on a completely non-commercial basis. Think of the £15m (net) as representing the expected losses of the new club’s 1st year.

Circumstances change and perhaps we have recently witnessed some movement from the shadows?

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neepheidPosted on11:48 pm - Apr 28, 2013


ecobhoy says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 23:04

You say: ‘If one were to take neepheids numbers on board (and if they are anywhere near to true), then without season book money this summer the club will, at current expenses, have burned through all the cash from the IPO by September. Which is less than the 12 months stated. ”

But you appear to miss the point that another share sale could take place after 20 December and not breach the Prospectus ‘promises’ so even if neepheid is spot-on with his figures then we are only talking about covering 3-4 months of ‘burn’.

I think it’s obvious that costs will be slashed so the burn-rate will reduce and then there’s the sale of STs for this season. They can easily get to January 2014 in my estimation.
================================
You are entirely correct on the working capital point. Having got the money in, the directors are free to use it as they like. We can discuss for ever whether the prospectus misled investors, and if we can disagree on that point,then the lawyers can spin it out until the last trumpet sounds.

On my figures, and without any season ticket money, the cash would run out by the end of July. But of course there will be season ticket money. As things stand, I’m guessing (very generously) around £10m (30,000x £300). That could see them through until Christmas, on current spending. You say January, and taking other income into account, you are probably right. But whether it’s January or December makes little difference-I don’t think they can legally sell season tickets on those figures, because they would know in advance that they can’t see the season out. So before they sell any season tickets, they have to slash costs to get them through until May. When most of your costs are salaries, that’s very hard to do on a short time scale. Ally’s a good example. Get rid of him tomorrow, and it costs a year’s salary- plus you have to pay someone else to do his job, so in the short term, it’s costing you more to sack him than to keep him. Maybe they can sell or give away some of the big earning players, or maybe not. Why would Black go, for example? Nobody else will pay him half what he’s on now. So he’ll sit tight.

As for another share sale, well, I know the bears can come across as a bit dim, but there must surely be a limit. That really must be a non-starter.

An off the radar billionaire is now required urgently. Dave King, anyone?

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CastofThousandsPosted on12:09 am - Apr 29, 2013


Senior says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 21:59

I must apologise Senior. I obviously misjudged my comment. I was genuinely trying to get to the nub of a comment that I found a bit cryptic, by breaking it down into bite size pieces. I’m the dummy you see.

View Comment

Resin_lab_dogPosted on12:09 am - Apr 29, 2013


neepheid says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 23:48

I think you are on it. End game approaches.
I think bank of DKs ‘soft credit’ is the most likely out.
Prediction: RFC are screwed because they can’t get a bank credit line. Bank of DK can give them that by underwriting loans on their behalf from personal wealth.

Cardigan’s trump card in the boardroom struggle is that he can give the funny handshake that might open DKs treasure chest. But the spanner in the works is, first he needs to wrest the club back from the ‘non Rangers men’ who moved in (by invitation) to do the dirty work, and act as pantomime villains (boo hiss) in the pre planned attempt to dump the debt, shaft the creditors, stick it to HMRC, and carry on as before, ‘with dignity’ / arrogance, – villains who appear to be slightly harder to shift than was planned, having sniffed a honeypot that could be milked again and again, and are unable to resist the habitual temptation to put one over on each other and anyone else in the vicinity…

Doubtless this is why Green raised the ante by bringing in the Easdales. To quote ‘The untouchables:
“He pulls a knife, you pull a gun, he sends one of yours to the hospital, you send one of his to the morgue. That’s the Chicago way, and that’s how you get Capone.” Whyte want spaying. Green wants paying.

Ear slicing finished. Weapons have been drawn… get ready to spit out your popcorn! We still son’t know how it ends!

And the role of the SFA in this action movie? A bent policeman. Venal and incompetent. Toadying ineffectual, and double crossing.

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goosyPosted on12:32 am - Apr 29, 2013


Lets get this thing into perspective

They are all Spivs………….. all of them

Murray and Cardigan deserve some slack for a while yet, but not beyond the end of the season Thereafter they are likely to be classed with the Spivs
People who are are here for money……… nothing else
,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,
Its not rocket science
Spivs are predictable
Spivs dont fire Spivs.They buy them off because they will be legally blackmailed if they don`t

So Green wasnt fired.He left because he got more money now than he would get if he fought his case

Green`s package will no doubt include at least 12m salary and the legal right to innediately sell his shares to the next Spiv who comes along.The future of TRFC won`t have crossed his mind

Khan will get a similar deal as will Stockbridge and any other front men who leave before the RIFC liquidation
And who will buy their shares?
Most likely people with another angle on how to milk the carcase..People further down the slippery slope to downright illegality
Perversely
Because the Spiv MO is to milk the carcase dry by legal means, they don`t let go until they cant get any more
So when they sell it can be to people with less concern about legality

Make no mistake

Those decent Bears who could have stepped in are now stymied by the legal complexity
No businessmen of integrity will put a penny into this mess. Ownership is spiralling down the food chain

The future is bleak

And it isn`t orange

View Comment

jerfeelgoodPosted on12:43 am - Apr 29, 2013


ecobhoy says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 23:04

neepheid says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 23:48
====================================
So I think we all seem to be agreeing that none of us think that without some rather savage cost cutting, that they will have finances in place to see out next season.

So to draw a comparison to this time last year when they were building their PR machine to get the season ticket cash in the door, they were talking up initial investment cash, season book cash, and IPO to finance the club through the season. A clear Plan was in place for how they were going to see out the season, thence why they could legitimately sell season tickets in the first place.

However this time round, they are not talking up any capital injection throughout the year, and the numbers as we see them don’t point them being able to see out the season without it. IMO they’re going to have to secure a business model before they can legitimately sell season tickets. So I would expect in the next couple of weeks they will have to start talking up how they’re cutting costs, or how they’re planning another capital injection from share issuance in January.

Without them talking up a financial plan, I don’t see how they can legitimately sell season tickets without opening themselves up to a raft of legal pitfalls. Here I believe through the licensing oversight by the SFA their is a legal duty of care for the SFA to ensure that the business model for the next season is viable before issuing them a license.

Can they sell tickets before their license is issued? I would have thought not.

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bogsdolloxPosted on1:09 am - Apr 29, 2013


If the “Deeds” were in the Safe all the time and were easily produced for a Sunday Mail Photoshoot to bolster the Bears why were DM Hall not allowed a quick squint at them when carrying out a professional valuation for the purposes of the Prospectus?

View Comment

bogsdolloxPosted on1:12 am - Apr 29, 2013


jerfeelgood says:
Monday, April 29, 2013 at 00:43

ecobhoy says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 23:04

neepheid says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 23:48
====================================
So I think we all seem to be agreeing that none of us think that without some rather savage cost cutting, that they will have finances in place to see out next season.

So to draw a comparison to this time last year when they were building their PR machine to get the season ticket cash in the door, they were talking up initial investment cash, season book cash, and IPO to finance the club through the season. A clear Plan was in place for how they were going to see out the season, thence why they could legitimately sell season tickets in the first place.

However this time round, they are not talking up any capital injection throughout the year, and the numbers as we see them don’t point them being able to see out the season without it. IMO they’re going to have to secure a business model before they can legitimately sell season tickets. So I would expect in the next couple of weeks they will have to start talking up how they’re cutting costs, or how they’re planning another capital injection from share issuance in January.

Without them talking up a financial plan, I don’t see how they can legitimately sell season tickets without opening themselves up to a raft of legal pitfalls. Here I believe through the licensing oversight by the SFA their is a legal duty of care for the SFA to ensure that the business model for the next season is viable before issuing them a license.

Can they sell tickets before their license is issued? I would have thought not.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

I would fully expect there to be a delay in the marketing of season tickets.

View Comment

Peter DPosted on4:28 am - Apr 29, 2013


oooft….

James Forrest does not miss here….

http://www.onfieldsofgreen.com/?p=692#more-692

View Comment

abigboydiditandranawayPosted on6:15 am - Apr 29, 2013


further to my nonsensical post of last night, research tells me thst Scotland will have a paltry ONE champions league place in season 2013-14.
we will also have three Europa league places entering the competition at various qualifying levels.
research? a wonderful thing and i was so sure i was right too…
100 lines…
“i must not make glib assumptions”…
apologies to all!
mea culpa.

View Comment

scottcPosted on6:45 am - Apr 29, 2013


neepheid says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 22:23

“nowoldandgrumpy says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 22:06

Rumours are that he has already been offered the Sevco job for next season”

Now where does that come from? It would be very interesting to know exactly who at Ibrox is in a position to offer anyone a job right now. Especially Ally’s job. Getting rid of him won’t come cheap.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

That is stated on RM. It’s just a rumour though. 😉

Now regarding Dave King and a possible place on the board, having previously been on the board of the defunct company. Two things strike me; it is possible that sufficient time has elapsed to allow him to become a board member, as he was not ‘involved’ (openly) in the creation of the new company. The other thing was that he would probably be appointed to the RIFC board and stay off the RFC Ltd board so that there was a degree of separation.

Whilst on the subject of Directors being appointed to ‘successor’ companies. Was Walter not on the board of the failed club?

View Comment

scottcPosted on6:47 am - Apr 29, 2013


abigboydiditandranaway says:
Monday, April 29, 2013 at 06:15

further to my nonsensical post of last night, research tells me thst Scotland will have a paltry ONE champions league place in season 2013-14.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

And, I believe, a ridiculous THREE qualifying rounds to negotiate

View Comment

Long Time LurkerPosted on7:00 am - Apr 29, 2013


peterjung1 says:
Monday, April 29, 2013 at 04:28

oooft….

James Forrest does not miss here….

http://www.onfieldsofgreen.com/?p=692#more-692

—————————————————————

Excellent article from James Forrest.

Will BDO, SFO or any other of the authorities come knocking on the door of the SFA? Imagine the questions:

* We may have reason to believe thaty TRFC are in essence a phoenix club, set up in part to defraud the taxpayer from debts due to it following the liquidation of RFC Ltd – on that basis

(a) Why did you wave many of your rules to allow a Newco entry into association football?

(b) Did anyone from the SFA have contact with RFC Ltd prior to the administration and liquidation events – to explore how a Newco could potentally remain within the senior levels of association football?

(c) Without access to association football – the Newco plan would have failed – to what extent were the SFA able to act independently – was it able to provide a (associate) licence to TRFC without any interference from a third-party?

View Comment

Lord WobblyPosted on7:44 am - Apr 29, 2013


And so it begins…

http://www.scotsman.com/sport/football/spl/old-firm-game-returns-as-youth-sides-meet-in-final-1-2912693

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torrejohnbhoyPosted on8:05 am - Apr 29, 2013


http://scotslawthoughts.wordpress.com/2013/04/29/sfa-v-craig-whyte-calls-at-glasgow-sheriff-court-this-week-on-conference-call/

View Comment

bl00teredPosted on8:09 am - Apr 29, 2013


“Simp Lee the Best” mmmmm,,,,,

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=simp

View Comment

jimlarkinPosted on9:07 am - Apr 29, 2013


http://www.express.co.uk/sport/football/395568/Rangers-starlet-Daniel-Stoney-eyes-derby-glory-against-Celtic?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+daily-express-scotland+%28Daily+Express+%3A%3A+Scotland+Feed%29

can somebody on twitter – please inform the player (danial stoney) and the writer (steve mcinnes)
that there is no more old-firm (as one of them no longer exists)

View Comment

wottpiPosted on9:28 am - Apr 29, 2013


I predict a quiet start to the week as the dust settles on Green and Ahmad’s departures.
A few new conspiracies will be voiced.
Someone will have another pop at Neil Lennon.
A final bit of blabber re last minute plans for reconstruction.
Minor trades on The Rangers share price will be tracked endlessly in the hope of the price dropping to 50p.
Ogilvie, Regan and Malcolm Murray will still hiding in that cave.
We will all get a bit bored and at least two posters will go head to head over something trivial
then……………….

Just when we think it is safe to stop hitting the F5 button something else will break. 🙂

View Comment

HirsutePursuitPosted on9:28 am - Apr 29, 2013


scottc says:
Monday, April 29, 2013 at 06:45
4 0 Rate This
neepheid says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 22:23

“nowoldandgrumpy says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 22:06

Rumours are that he has already been offered the Sevco job for next season”

Now where does that come from? It would be very interesting to know exactly who at Ibrox is in a position to offer anyone a job right now. Especially Ally’s job. Getting rid of him won’t come cheap.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

That is stated on RM. It’s just a rumour though.

Now regarding Dave King and a possible place on the board, having previously been on the board of the defunct company. Two things strike me; it is possible that sufficient time has elapsed to allow him to become a board member, as he was not ‘involved’ (openly) in the creation of the new company. The other thing was that he would probably be appointed to the RIFC board and stay off the RFC Ltd board so that there was a degree of separation.

Whilst on the subject of Directors being appointed to ‘successor’ companies. Was Walter not on the board of the failed club?
=====================================
Dave King cannot be the director of any company that uses the Rangers brand for a period of 5 years from the date the old club entered liquidation.

216 Restriction on re-use of company names.

(1)This section applies to a person where a company (“the liquidating company”) has gone into insolvent liquidation on or after the appointed day and he was a director or shadow director of the company at any time in the period of 12 months ending with the day before it went into liquidation.

(2)For the purposes of this section, a name is a prohibited name in relation to such a person if—

(a)it is a name by which the liquidating company was known at any time in that period of 12 months, or

(b)it is a name which is so similar to a name falling within paragraph (a) as to suggest an association with that company.

(3)Except with leave of the court or in such circumstances as may be prescribed, a person to whom this section applies shall not at any time in the period of 5 years beginning with the day on which the liquidating company went into liquidation—

(a)be a director of any other company that is known by a prohibited name, or

(b)in any way, whether directly or indirectly, be concerned or take part in the promotion, formation or management of any such company, or

(c)in any way, whether directly or indirectly, be concerned or take part in the carrying on of a business carried on (otherwise than by a company) under a prohibited name.

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1986/45/section/216

View Comment

tomtomPosted on9:35 am - Apr 29, 2013


Some interesting stuff regarding Metro Bank from an interview with it’s founder Vernon Hill:

“Metro made a pre-tax loss of £33m in 2011, according to the latest report and accounts filed at Companies House. But Hill raised £250m from investors at the start and said it would take years to make a profit.”

“Others worry that Metro’s commercial customers – around 50pc of the loans – are primarily those that have been rejected by other banks. At the start, Hill said he wanted to list Metro in 2012 or 2013, which hasn’t happened.”

“Hill says he left Commerce because it was “time”. But his departure followed complaints by US regulators over the fees the bank was paying to his wife, Shirley, who was responsible for the interior design. No charges were brought, although the episode caused delays with the FSA in the UK. Hill made $4m from a 5pc stake in Commerce; he started with 20pc of Metro.”

“The key to the Metro model is marketing; Hill is surprisingly light on details of his banking proposition. To questions such as ‘what’s your overdraft charge, top mortgage rates’ or even ‘how much does the famous IT system cost’, Hill shrugs and says “Dunno; we’ll get you numbers.” On the subject of UK GDP figures out last week, he shrugs again: “I don’t really care about the outlook for the economy. We’re in the market share business, taking share from existing competition.”

I’ve cherry-picked the above but is this really a bank that you would trust?

The full interview can be found here:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/banksandfinance/10023832/Monday-Interview-All-American-shake-up-comes-to-UK-banking.html

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zerotolerance1903Posted on9:38 am - Apr 29, 2013


neepheid says:

Saturday, April 27, 2013 at 20:42

jerfeelgood says:
Saturday, April 27, 2013 at 19:54
2 0 Rate This
neepheid says:
Saturday, April 27, 2013 at 19:41

This assumes that the SFA are requiring a full years audited accounts. I would say that the SFA would be happy to take accounts from the date of acquisition of the business to present, as a prerequisite to once again waiving the 3 year accounts rule. AFAIK the 3 year accounts rule is still in effect, and that rule will have to once again be waived during this years rounds of licensing applications.

The 30th of April is an SFA deadline. The 30th June accounting deadline is a companies HMRC legal rule. One has nothing to do with the other.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
The 30th April is the date by which the SFA require clubs to submit their annual audited accounts ending on their accounting date in 2012. They are therefore giving clubs a minimum of 4 months (assuming that the accounting date is 31 December) to have audited accounts prepared. That is quite tight, believe it or not, but I believe most clubs actually have a 30 June accounting date.

30th June is not a deadline, it is the date to which the company has chosen to have its accounts drawn up. The AIM deadline for publication of those is 31 December. The HMRC and Companies House deadlines for submission are later. It used to be 9 months after the accounting date, but I believe it is now less for a PLC.

So the SFA cannot possibly get audited accounts from TRFC by 30th April, and audited accounts are what the licensing regulations require. So TRFC will get a derogation, but the SFA may make that conditional on them providing some information short of audited accounts..

The SFA has a general right under its own rules to seek financial information from any club at any time. From its articles of association-

……………..
___________________________________________________________________

That’s basically right.

Most Clubs have accounting periods ending on 30th June. The year ended 30/06/12 would have accounts due at Companies House by 30/03/13 (30/12/12 for a Plc) therefore the deadline of 30th April is just saying give us your accounts within a month of filing them at Companies House.

TRFC do not have an accounting period ending in 2012 (their first accounting period is a 13.5 month period from May ’12 to 30 June 13) therefore they have nothing to file under this requirement.

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zerotolerance1903Posted on9:43 am - Apr 29, 2013


Also the 3-years accounts rule is something of a red herring in respect of TRFC being allowed to play in the Scottish leagues.

IIRC this is only a requirement for UEFA licensing,meaning that TRFC would not be able to enter European comeptition until 3-years audited accounts have been filed – meaning the acocunts for year ended 30/06/15 which would be filed by 30 December 2015 (if they are still in business and still isted) submitted to the SFA by April 2016 and allowing the SFA to license them for European competiion in 2016/17 at the earliest.

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jerfeelgoodPosted on9:58 am - Apr 29, 2013


zerotolerance1903 says:
Monday, April 29, 2013 at 09:38
That’s basically right.

Most Clubs have accounting periods ending on 30th June. The year ended 30/06/12 would have accounts due at Companies House by 30/03/13 (30/12/12 for a Plc) therefore the deadline of 30th April is just saying give us your accounts within a month of filing them at Companies House.

TRFC do not have an accounting period ending in 2012 (their first accounting period is a 13.5 month period from May ’12 to 30 June 13) therefore they have nothing to file under this requirement.
=================================================
The implication of that would be that rangers will not have to submit to SFA accounting regs until season 14/15. I don’t see the SFA allowing that after a spectacular financial implosion. I have to believe that they built something into the five way agreement to allow for monitoring. Anything else would create a ridiculous situation.

And even if they didn’t, they’re under no obligation to issue a license this year. They can build any new conditions into this years license to circumvent the 3yr accounts rule.

There’s an interesting question. Did the five way agreement only pertain to the exceptional granting of a license for season 12/13. Does a new agreement have to be reached this season considering rangers are still not in a position to meet the prerequisite accounting conditions?

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jerfeelgoodPosted on9:59 am - Apr 29, 2013


AFAIK the 3yr accounts are built into the SFA articles of association, thence the furore over why rangers got a license ahead of spartans last summer.

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tomtomPosted on10:10 am - Apr 29, 2013


Just had a phone call from Sandy Bryson.

He says that because Rangers were permitted to play in the SFL without any audited accounts then they must be allowed to continue to play without them. To now ask them to produce accounts would be absurd. The office junior whose job it was to file all copies of clubs audited accounts and inform the SFA of any discrepancies is no longer employed by the SFA and cannot be contacted.

View Comment

willmacufreePosted on10:11 am - Apr 29, 2013


Senior says: Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 20:03
50 TU
79 TD
Oh by the way Lunny is a master of distraction.
He slaps a three game ban on N Lennon for something every red-blooded manager in football does on a weekly basis – even Arsene Wenger is known to swear!!
Of course this is a distraction ( a pretty good one, look at the reaction it elicited)
The other distraction is, that a team who have beaten the best team in the world CL, win the SPL, possibly win the Scottish Cup have not one player short-listed for Player of the Year.
It has to be a distraction nothing else makes sense.
———-
If proof were needed, there it is. Senior posts a couple of good, some might say incontrovertible, points favouring Celtic. He gets a hurricane of TDs. That seems to indicate a lot of not quite dyed in the wool CFC fans responding. Yet still the “It’s a Celtic only forum” jibes persist.

View Comment

torrejohnbhoyPosted on10:32 am - Apr 29, 2013


Keith Jackson cynical –

Who do you trust in battle for Rangers?

29 Apr 2013 00:01
IF Brian Stockbridge and his CEO Craig Mather are to be trusted by Rangers supporters there are a few questions they must be made to answer – like whether they really have the club’s best interests at heart.

OK, so let me check I’ve got this thing right.

Brian Stockbridge is a man to be trusted. A real “stand-up guy” to use one of Craig Whyte’s old favourites.

A man in whom Rangers fans, still traumatised and confused by the ransacking of their club’s morality, can finally place their faith.

Yeah, that’s about the size of it. Stockbridge and his CEO Craig Mather just aren’t like all the other guys who have barged in through the front doors of this club and ravaged it mercilessly for two solid years. They are here to help.

That’s certainly the tone of the message blaring out from inside Ibrox and washing over the rank and file of the Rangers support, like one of those rattly loudspeakers in North Korea with which the glorious leader conditions his masses.

That’s not to say that Stockbridge and Mather cannot still emerge from the carnage created by their cohorts as credible, well-meaning leaders. Maybe they will.

The Rangers support is now more of a guard dog than a doting pet. Right now their club needs them to be Doberman Pinschers, not poodles.

They have to be alert and (to use the words of another former head of the big house) they must remain vigilant. They have to work out for themselves who in all of this mess really deserves to be trusted rather than adopt the old nodding dog approach which has served their club so badly.

They could start by examining what they are being fed and also asking themselves the reason why they are being fed it.

OK, so let’s go back to the start. Stockbridge and Mather are now the men at the helm of this continuing catastrophe but it feels very much as if they have been bundled there by the very people who have just been oxtered off the premises amidst so much controversy, backstabbing and deception.

Over the weekend this pair were deliberately pushed out front and positioned in the very centre of this unrelenting storm. “Trust us” they screamed with their every word.

Stockbridge was even prepared to dig into his office drawer and produce to our sister paper, the Sunday Mail, those mythical title deeds.

How handy that they just happened to be sitting there in the first place. What a stroke of luck.

However, it may have been of more interest and relevance had Stockbridge also been able to hand over details of exactly where the floating charge which Craig Whyte once held over these assets is currently placed. And over what.

Perhaps he would also like to explain how his old accomplices, Charles Green and Imran Ahmad, managed to persuade a man such as Whyte to release that charge in the first place because these issues are truly fundamental to the future of this ailing institution and require a great deal more than a staged photo opportunity to clear up.

Stockbridge has a lot more questions to answer before he can expect to win the trust of these supporters because his sudden emergence as a leader and a man of honour doesn’t automatically pass a smell test. Surely even Stockbridge can see why.

Think about what these fans are being asked to swallow. It’s a bit like they woke up in the dead of night to find three intruders in their own home. Two of them have now scarpered over the back fence, with pockets rammed full of Rangers’ money. The third is still standing there in the front room.

But this third man has suddenly been overcome by a sense of righteousness and good.

And now he wants to help put the house back in order? “There, there. Go back to bed and I’ll have this dreadful mess straightened out by the morning. TRUST ME!”

These fans are being asked to have complete faith in a financial director who has already admitted to signing off one huge severance cheque to Green and who has not ruled out passing over another to Ahmad. Even though both men are currently the subject of an internal club probe.

Are these the actions of a man who has Rangers’ best interests at heart?

Also, why was Stockbridge initially resisting this independent enquiry in the first place and demanding it be confined only to the extent of the relationship between Green and Whyte? Why was he against a far wider reaching probe into all of the club’s business dealings?

This investigation and the lines of enquiry it follows, lies at the very heart of what is truly best for Rangers.

If it is robust, fearless and unconditional then it will lay bare the inner workings of this club over the past couple of years. Every sordid detail. It will allow Rangers to cleanse itself (to borrow another familiar phrase) in full public view.

The club can then be seen to be fixing itself as part of a determined effort to distance itself from the wrong doers and chancers who have done it such harm.

Surely, that can only be in the best interests of Rangers. So why then would anyone complain to the board that such a thorough probe would be an “unnecessary waste of money”?

And Stockbridge sees no problem with handing over obscene pay-offs to pals who could have been fired for free on charges of gross misconduct.

If that’s not a waste of this club’s dwindling resources then what is?

And why hand over the cash before this investigation has been concluded unless you have already prejudged its outcome. Which would make the whole thing a whitewash, right?

There is something else about this internal probe that Stockbridge must be made to answer. Is he looking for the truth to emerge in the club’s best interests or would he rather fudge it to get it out of the way as quickly as possible? Can he handle the truth?

Because if he really does want a root and branch investigation to be carried out why is the club stalling on the appointment of a chairman for this commission?

It is my understanding a high-profile businessman of impeccable credentials has already agreed to take on that role and to dive head first into these murky waters in search of the truth.

In fact, he has been discussing the remits of his role for more than a week with chairman Malcolm Murray. But he is still waiting to be given the go-ahead by the rest of the board. Why is that?

Murray, after all, is a long-standing Rangers fan and also a stickler for good corporate governance. He knows the appointment of this individual is fundamental on both counts and yet still he does not push it through, at a time when Stockbridge wants the whole thing wrapped up within the next few days.

What is going on here? Is Murray not doing the right thing because he is fearful of what the consequences might be?

His character has been smeared in the past by people inside his own boardroom. Is there now something else hanging over his head that the Rangers fans should know about?

All in all, if the new leaders of Rangers really are men who can be trusted why are they still acting as if they have something to hide?

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alwaysmaroonPosted on10:36 am - Apr 29, 2013


I am more of a (very regular) lurker here than a poster.

And I may be many things, but like what appears to be the majority on here, am not a Celtic fan, and even more certainly not a Tribute Act fan.

I was a staunch fan of Hearts, and Scottish football in general, but the way SFA handled the demise and phoenixing of Rangers, and the LNS fraud, have actually stopped me going to Scottish football games at all.

I want to go back, but I see no point in paying good money to watch the football equivalent of the WWF, with pre-ordained results and “SFA decisions”.

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neepheidPosted on10:37 am - Apr 29, 2013


There seems to be some confusion between SFA membership, and the club licensing process. The five way agreement transferred the existing “Rangers” membership of the SFA from Oldco (then in administration) to Sevco. That is how the requirement for 3 years audited accounts was sidestepped- that requirement only applies to a new membership. In this case an existing membership was transferred to a new owner.

Club licensing is a bit of a mystery to me. I cannot find any mention of it in the SFA handbook or the SFL rules. There is a seperate guide to the licensing process, but I cannot find any reference to a club license being a requirement to play professional football in Scotland. I understand that it is a quality assurance process, but do the SFA or SFL have any powers to expel a club which doesn’t get a license? Does anyone know?

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aramintamoobeamqcPosted on10:44 am - Apr 29, 2013


I wonder who told Keith Jackson to write that?
Call me a wretched old cynic…

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ptd1978Posted on10:44 am - Apr 29, 2013


Let’s take advantage of the brief lull in implosions on the “good” ship Sevco to document exactly what the SPL/SFA/SFL did for Rangers and Sevco that it would not do for a smaller club.

– Overlooked RFC’s finances for the last year of it’s life and continued to allow it to play when 5 minutes research would have shown that RFC should have been denied a licence to play for financial reasons.
– Buried it’s head in the sand over Craig Whyte’s fit and proper status.
– Deliberately failed to act on both of the above charges until they knew it would not impact the body sending out a team every week.
– Took responsibility for RFC lying about CW’s fit and proper status and the club’s finances, by pretending that it doesn’t check these things. (It does, just not in Govan).
– Tried to arrange immediate entry into SPL for Sevco.
– Tried to arrange entry into SFL1 when SPL parachute did not deploy.
– Conjured up a “licence transfer” policy to a completely new club despite refusing exactly the same thing after Gretna’s implosion.
– Negotiated a “five way agreement” that appears to have involved the other three parties gleefully bending over for Rangers and Sevco, but nobody knows cos they’re keeping it secret and not even trying to explain why.
– Completely changed their league reconstruction stance, but only up to the point where Sevco might be expected to reach the top division.
– Explicitly stated that Sevco could be regarded as “Rangers” when it has nothing to do with them.
– Set up an inquiry into title stripping, but then quietly restricted the scope of the inquiry so that LNS had to do what the SFA said. The SFA then threw out all precedent and provided such a warped testimony that it can’t and wont talk about it in public, but which was designed solely to help the Rangers brand.

Please add to the list. I believe each of these constitutes a breach of the duty of care that the guardians of the game in Scotland are supposed to maintain. SR, ND and DL have been instrumental in representing these to the public and must therefore take responsibility for the abject failure of the authorities to deal with the death of Rangers in a manner that follows the rules.

CO has managed to keep his hands clean (publicly at least), however as the man at the top he has a duty of care to ensure that the SFA and the bodies subordinate to it behave in a correct manner. He has abjectly failed to do this. Rangers connection or not, he has drawn a salary over the last year and a half while his organisation has tied itself in knots. If he were a NED and the SFA were a PLC, his failure to resign would constitute conspiracy. Ignorance is not a defence at that level. CO has to go now, not because he’s a “Rangers man” and most of the footballing public believe he’s up to his neck on every one of the above issues. He has to go because the ostrich act is no longer acceptable.

Root and branch reform needed.

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arabest1Posted on10:48 am - Apr 29, 2013


Senior says:
Sunday, April 28, 2013 at 20:03

50

80

Rate This

Oh by the way Lunny is a master of distraction.
He slaps a three game ban on N Lennon for something every red-blooded manager in football does on a weekly basis – even Arsene Wenger is known to swear!!
Of course this is a distraction ( a pretty good one, look at the reaction it elicited)
The other distraction is, that a team who have beaten the best team in the world CL, win the SPL, possibly win the Scottish Cup have not one player short-listed for Player of the Year.
It has to be a distraction nothing else makes sense. ,

I understand you are frustrated Senior, but really, Mr Lunny is not in any way responsible for POTY polls, indeed it is one of the few things the SFA have little control over. Mr Lennon is either using this as a motivational tool to maintain his team’s momentum…..or is he really claiming professional footballers in Scotland are delivering a metaphorical ‘Presbyterian slap’ to his players? Some on here last week were giving serious consideration to a wave of ‘tactical voting’ to exclude Celtic players. John Rankin was on Off the Ball on Saturday, his comments were interesting. He maintained that in the past Celtic fans voted for Celtic players and Rangers fans voted for Rangers players, we all know the demographic, so it was a forgone conclusion that, (like everything else) the winner would be from the big two. I’d call that tactical voting – the poisonous dynamic that is the Old Firm strikes again! Mercifully that dynamic all but died last year, but the discourse surrounding this POTY debate resurrects the whole toxic atmosphere of suspicion and ‘agendas’ we should be trying to bury with RFC. Rankin added it was ‘different this year’. The individual endeavour of Higdon, McGinn, Griffiths, and Shinnie has outshone the collective endeavours of a very accomplished Celtic side, a Celtic side without the guile of a Nakamura or a McGeady, or a dominant single performer in midfield or defence, Brown, for example, has (worrisome) injury issues restricting his appearances and more so his performances. The continued whining of Celtic fans about this is certainly becoming a distraction, and it reeks of a sense of entitlement.

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zerotolerance1903Posted on10:50 am - Apr 29, 2013


jerfeelgood says:

Monday, April 29, 2013 at 09:59

AFAIK the 3yr accounts are built into the SFA articles of association, thence the furore over why rangers got a license ahead of spartans last summer.
______________________________________________________________

Nope.

http://www.scottishfa.co.uk/resources/documents/SFAPublications/SFAHandbook/09Articles.pdf

Clubs automatically become a member of the SFA by becoming members of the SFL.

More relevant is the National Club Licensing requirements:

http://www.scottishfa.co.uk/football_document_libraries.cfm?page=2570

As you can see there are different criteria for National and UEFA licensing. The national licensing at 8.11 is in line with my earlier comments. The UEFA ones are more extensive.

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SmugasPosted on10:50 am - Apr 29, 2013


Retort to Jackson.

Look for the one using his own money. That might be a good place to start.

The one with Walter Smith standing behind him – a close second, but less reliable.

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Kenny DuthiePosted on11:00 am - Apr 29, 2013


An excellent piece by James Forrest which I have forwarded to the SFA,I await their response but I’m not expecting much 🙁

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zerotolerance1903Posted on11:40 am - Apr 29, 2013


neepheid says:

Monday, April 29, 2013 at 10:37

There seems to be some confusion between SFA membership, and the club licensing process. The five way agreement transferred the existing “Rangers” membership of the SFA from Oldco (then in administration) to Sevco. That is how the requirement for 3 years audited accounts was sidestepped- that requirement only applies to a new membership. In this case an existing membership was transferred to a new owner.

Club licensing is a bit of a mystery to me. I cannot find any mention of it in the SFA handbook or the SFL rules. There is a seperate guide to the licensing process, but I cannot find any reference to a club license being a requirement to play professional football in Scotland. I understand that it is a quality assurance process, but do the SFA or SFL have any powers to expel a club which doesn’t get a license? Does anyone know?
_____________________________________________________

SFA can expel a Club that has it’s license suspended for a period greater than 6 months.

That one is in the Articles somewhere.

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bad capt madmanPosted on11:41 am - Apr 29, 2013


ptd1978:says :

you could also add the permission to Sevco (Im not sure if they were actually TRFC at that point) to play Brechin FC in a cup game when it’s not clear that the registrations of players were transferred in time, either by SFA rules or TUPE rules.

There may have been a greater good argument to allow TRFC into the leagues, as eventually decided by the SFL clubs, but there was no reason to allow a not yet formed / accepted club into a cup competition other than to get them income, and a chance to win the competition!

This travesty also allowed newly signed players who were not yet registered to play as “trialists”.in that game. One of them scored.

We can assume that the SFA / someone pressured Brechin not to challenge these decisions and claim the tie!. Well, I can assume it anyway.

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zerotolerance1903Posted on11:42 am - Apr 29, 2013


Its 17 (6)

SUSPENSION OR TERMINATION OF MEMBERSHIP
17. Full membership or associate membership may be suspended or terminated by the
Board in the following circumstances:-

(1) where a club fails to have its ground accepted by the Board for the current playing
season;
(2) where a club fails for 2 successive playing seasons to play and complete its
participation in those of the Challenge Cup Competitions for which it is eligible;
(3) where a full member entitled to have a representative at a general meeting who
facilitates representation by a person who does not qualify as its representative in
terms of Article 26;
(4) where a full member or associate member becomes a member of another National
Association or of any other body promoting football which is not authorised by
the Association;
(5) where the Board has exercised its power of expulsion in relation to a full or
associate member in terms of Article 123;
(6) where the club has had its National Club Licence suspended for a period in excess
of 6 months;
(7) where in respect of a member club in full or associate membership a petition is
presented for its winding up or where the member club in question shall convene a
meeting to pass a resolution for voluntary winding up or shall enter into any form
of liquidation (other than for the purposes of a bona fide solvent reconstruction or
amalgamation) or shall be deemed by virtue of Section 123 of the Insolvency Act
1986 or any other appropriate statutory provision to be unable to pay its debts.

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AuldheidPosted on11:59 am - Apr 29, 2013


Zerotolerance
Re what financial info can The Rangers supply in place of audited accounts I have been asking this question since the turn of the year.
My supposition is that to get the go ahead from the SFA some financial forecasts were provided last year. Now some 9 months on the SFA have some actuals to look at and I have already provided a link to figures that suggest there may be trouble next season and insolvency the next acertainty unless The Rangers run their business on a sustainable basis.
I believe an earlier version of that revised forecast without the sale and lease back scenario in the latest link was given to the SFA by a journo across the water who has asked on what basis a licence can be granted in view of more recent information that has come into the public domain since.
What I was assuming would happen was a response to rubbish the forecast and state on what basis the SFA would grant a licence. As far as I know the SFA have not responded and here we are at crunch time.

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ecobhoyPosted on11:59 am - Apr 29, 2013


torrejohnbhoy says:
Monday, April 29, 2013 at 10:3

Who do you trust in battle for Rangers?
======================================================

I think it’s worth remembering the figures quoted by Stockbridge in: http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/home-news/rangers-aim-for-100m-turnover.20455502

He was quite clear in the article he expected Rangers turnover when it returns to the top-flight of Scottish Football to be £100+ million although he did admit that despite £9.5m of revenue in the seven months between May and December last year a £7m loss was reported.

Stockbridge said Rangers historically had a turnover of about £60m in years when competing in the Champions League – not including merchandising but that when Rangers did its own retail it made £20.5m turnover and £5.6m profit just from merchandising.

He added: “So, let’s say if we can only do as good as £20m [even] with Mike Ashley as our partner, with Puma and with internet sales, then suddenly we are looking at £80m to £90m turnover.

“Then you look at the additional sponsorship possibilities and think it would be nice to get it to £100m, but even then I wouldn’t think my job would be done at that point, as it could go on beyond that.”

One thing in the article I hadn’t really thought about before was his comment: ‘”With Puma, I negotiated that we get a very high royalty rate on everything, even what we sell in the shop here at Ibrox.” I had actually thought that it was Ahmad as commercial director that was involved in this type of negotiations but obviously I picked that up wrong.

But Stockbridge might be just in the door but he’s made of the right stuff or is he as I truly wonder what the Bears make of this stastement: ‘This is more than a football club. It is a global brand’.

Do I detect not too distant echoes of Green?

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Long Time LurkerPosted on12:06 pm - Apr 29, 2013


RhebelRhebel‏@RhebelRhebel
Sevco’s audited accounts due to the @ScottishFA tomorrow, will clear up the mystery of the £22m in the bank. http://tinyurl.com/cwuajv9 See 8.11

Ah, the accounts…

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Madbhoy24941Posted on12:13 pm - Apr 29, 2013


arabest1 says:
Monday, April 29, 2013 at 10:48
————————————————–

Like you, I also see the POTY vote as another distraction although I am not bored with it as I find the dynamic an interesting study of human behaviour. Unless the result was manipulated (how would that work in this instance?) then we should accept that as players, the majority voted for who they believed were better that year. Reasons where given why a Celtic player was not in the top four, they are very logical. Reasons given why the top 4 were picked were also given, again very logical. I am willing to accept that, not just as a compromise; simply based on the fact I believe it to be right.

But I also believe there are a percentage of players who would never vote for a Celtic player even if Messi played for them, equally, but not to the same extent, there are players who would never vote for a Rangers player. I think both of those percentages are at the very low end.

I also believe there are some players who didn’t actually consider Celtic players due them believing they won the league without a serious challenger. If you can have a league within a league for the 11 teams battling for 2nd place, why wouldn’t that apply also to votes for the player of the year?

Interesting conversation over the weekend, I asked my mates who they would have voted for; it was a 50/50 split between Commons and Forster for CPOTY. Excluding Celtic players? They all went for someone different, go figure. But they all agreed that since there was no stand out at domestic level, they would understand if a non-Celtic player won that award this season. Ok, there were only 4 of us voting but at least it’s a sample worth noting. But the really interesting one was the MOTY award, this was 100% for Lennon, I have my reasons but I asked the others and got this response:

1. The manager that won the SPL & last 16 of CL, he should be manager of the year.
2. He’s the manager that beat Barcelona and he won the league and in the final of cup.
3. He coached the team that had 7 players voted as POTY, way ahead of all others.

My view is a little bit more wide ranging:

4. NL not only won the league as head coach, he brought in some great young players from the youth team, he bought some great young players from outside of the SPL, he got the best out of existing players like Samaras, Stokes, Brown and Commons. He won the league comfortably, reached the final of The Scottish Cup, Last 16 of Champions League and beat Barcelona.

From all managers plying their trade in Scotland, he was my manager of the year.

Taking my Celtic hat off for a second….

POTY: Michael Higdon (Mountain of a guy in the mould of John Hartson, takes all the knocks for the team plus scores some crackers along the way).

MOTY: Terry Butcher (Mr Motivator, considering the team, squad and opportunities to go back down south for more money, he gets my vote and is my sort of football guy).

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jerfeelgoodPosted on12:14 pm - Apr 29, 2013


From SFA AOA
(http://www.scottishfa.co.uk/resources/documents/SFAPublications/SFAHandbook/09Articles.pdf)

Article 15.1 (f) “Subject to Articles 15.2 and 15.4, full membership
or associate membership may be suspended or terminated by the Judicial
Panel following reference to it by the Board where the club has had its Club Licence suspended for a period in excess of 6 months or where it has been determined by the Board that a club has failed to meet the required [b]minimum standards as prescribed in the
Club Licensing Procedures.[/b]

From SFL constitution and rules
(http://www.scottishfootballleague.com/docs/009__034__constitution__rules__SFL_Constitution__Rules__1346425915.pdf)

22.2
Each Member and Associate Member shall supply to the League by not
later than 1st June in each year such details as the Board may reasonably
require regarding the Member or Associate Member and its Officials. Such
details shall be supplied on an Annual Return form supplied by the League.
Members and Associate Members are required to submit to the League
with the Annual Return a copy of the [b]latest financial statements[/b] of the
Member as audited or reported upon by an independent accountant or
registered auditor.

From SFA Club Licensing
(http://www.scottishfa.co.uk/resources/documents/ClubLicensing/Part2:National/Part2Sect8_Legal,Admin,FinanceandCodesofPractice%20Criteria.pdf)

3.11
Legal Link between the club and the Scottish FA National Club Licensing was approved by the Scottish FA membership at the Scottish FA EGM in May 2002. [b]All Scottish FA member clubs are subject to Club Licensing and are bound by its requirements.[/b]

and

8.12 Financial Information

Clubs are required to provide a summary of financial information drawn from the Audited Accounts submitted at 8.1.1. Clubs should be aware that this information will be made freely available via the Scottish FA Website.

A club is required to submit a summary of financial information covering the reporting year for 2012 and the previous two years i.e. 2011 and 2010 as detailed below.

Exceptional dispensation may be granted by the Licensing Committee in certain cases where a club is unable to provide historical financial information. [b]Clubs will be required to submit written reasons for such an exceptional request.[/b] Not wishing to disclose the information will
not be considered a valid application for an exceptional request however.

So.
AOA stipulates SFL membership as a prerequisite to membership status. SFL requires three years of accounts for compliance with Licensing standards. Licensing requires that In the case of no historical financial information, that a club must submit written reasons for the exception. It may then consider issuing a dispensation.

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jerfeelgoodPosted on12:27 pm - Apr 29, 2013


Another thing I noticed in the Licensing standards was that Rangers maintain and submit a Customer Charter as part of their license application. This charter is supposed to deal in part with ticketing issues. Anyone have any Idea where we’d get our hands on that?

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neepheidPosted on12:27 pm - Apr 29, 2013


zerotolerance1903 says:
Monday, April 29, 2013 at 11:42

Thanks for posting that. I think the biggest word in all of that has only three letters- MAY. So if a club can’t get a licence, then the SFA MAY suspend or terminate membership. Or MAY not. I’m getting so cynical in my old age!

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