Spot the difference?

Bybroganrogantrevinoandhogan

Spot the difference?

Good Afternoon.

Announcing outstanding financial successes for Rangers PLC the then Chairman of the club opened his Chairman’s report in the annual financial statements with the following words:

“Last summer I explained that the Club, after many years of significant investment in our playing squad
and more recently in our state of the art facility at Murray Park, had embarked on a three year business
plan to stabilise and improve the Club’s finances. The plan also recognised the need to react to the
challenging economic conditions facing football clubs around the world.

Following a trend over a number of years of increasing year on year losses, I am pleased to report that
in the first year of this plan we have made important progress by reversing this trend. Our trading loss
for last year of £11.2m reflects a £7.9m improvement versus the £19.1m loss for the previous year and
although it will take more time to completely reach our goals, this is a key milestone. We also intend to
make significant further progress by the end of the current financial year. This improvement is the
consequence of having a solid strategy and the commitment and energy to implement the changes it requires”

Later on in the same statement the chairman would add:

“Another key part of our plan is associated with the Rangers brand and our Retail Division goes from strength to strength. Our financial results this year have been significantly enhanced by an outstanding performance in merchandising Rangers products, in particular replica kit, which makes our Retail Division one of the most successful in Europe.”

In the same set of financial reports, the CEO would report:

“To further strengthen Rangers hospitality portfolio, a new dedicated sponsor’s lounge was unveiled this season. The Carling Lounge is a first for the Club and was developed in conjunction with our new sponsor, Carling. ”

and

“Our innovative events programme continues to grow and this year saw a record number of official events including the highly successful annual Hall of Fame Awards Ceremony, Player of the Year and 50 Championships Gala Dinner, all of which catered for up to 1000 guests.

At Rangers, we continually develop our portfolio of products and as a key area of income for the Club, we evaluate the market for new revenue opportunities on an ongoing basis in order to exceed our existing and potential customer expectations and needs.

Demand for season tickets reached an all time high last season with a record 42,508 season ticket holders in comparison with the previous season`s figure of 40,320. Over 36,000 of these season ticket holders renewed for this season – a record number.

For the new season, we are delighted to welcome brewing giant, Carling on board as our Official Club sponsor. Carling is one of the UK’s leading consumer brands with a proven track record in football sponsorship.
The Club also continues to work with a number of multinational blue chip brands such as National Car Rental, Sony Playstation 2, Bank of Scotland and Coca-Cola. This year, we will also experience the evolution of the Honda deal via Hyndland Honda and welcome the mobile communications giant T-Mobile to our ranks.”.

The year was 2003 and in the previous 24 months Rangers Football Club, owned and operated as a private fiefdom by Sir David Murray, had made operational losses of some £30 million.

Yes – 30 MILLION POUNDS.

Of course the chairman’s report for 2003 was written by John F Mclelland CBE and the CEO was one Martin Bain Esq.

As Mr Mclelland clearly stated, by 2003 the club already had a trend of increasing year on year losses covering a number of years and was losing annual sums which stretched into millions, if not tens of millions, of pounds.

However, the acquisition of Rangers Football Club was absolutely vital to David Murray’s personal business growth, and his complete control of the club as his own private business key was more important than any other business decision he had made before buying Rangers or since.

When he persuaded Gavin Masterton to finance 100% of the purchase price of the club, Murray had his finest business moment.

By getting control of Rangers, Murray was able to offer entertainment, hospitality, seeming privilege and bestow favour on others in a way that was hitherto undreamed of, and he bestowed that largesse on any number of “existing and potential clients” and contacts – be they the clients and contacts related to Rangers Football Club or the existing and potential clients of David Murray, his businesses, his banks, or anyone in any field that he chose to court for the purposes of potential business.

His business.

It wasn’t only journalists who benefited from the succulent lamb treatment.

Accountants,lawyers, surveyors, broadcasters, football officials, people in industry and construction, utilities, financiers and other areas of business were all invited inside the sacred House of Murray and given access to the great man of business “and owner of Rangers” while attending the “record number of official (hospitality) events”.

Twelve months on from when John McLelland made those statements in the 2003 accounts, David Murray was back in the chair at Ibrox and he presented the 2004 financials.

In the intervening 12 months Rangers had gained an additional £10 million from Champions League income and had received £8.6 million in transfer fees from the sale of Messrs Ferguson, Amoruso and McCann. Not only that, the Rangers board had managed to reduce the club’s wage bill by £5 million. Taking all three figures together comes to some £23.6 million in extra income or savings.

Yet, the accounts for 2004 showed that the club made an operational loss of almost £6 million and overall debt had risen by an additional £7 million to £97.4 million.

However, the 2004 accounts were also interesting for another reason.

Rangers PLC had introduced payments “to employees trusts” into their accounts for the first time in 2001 and in that year they had paid £1million into those trusts. Just three years later, the trust payments recorded in the accounts had risen to £7.3 million per annum — or to put it another way to 25% of the annual wage bill though no one in Scottish Football asked any questions about that!

By the following year, the chairman announced that the 2004 operational loss had in fact been £10.4million but that the good news was that the 2005 operational loss was only £7.8 million. However Rangers were able to post a profit before taxation if they included the money obtained from transfers (£8.4 million) and the inclusion of an extraordinary profit of £14,999,999 made on buying back the shares of a subsidiary company for £1 which they had previously sold for £15 million.

All of which added up to a whopping great profit of ……… £12.4 million!

I will leave you to do the maths on 2005.

Oh and of course these accounts included the detail that 3000 Rangers fans had joined David Murray in participating in the November ’94 share issue where the club managed to raise £51,430,995 in fresh capital most of which was provided by Mr Murray… sorry I mean MIH ….. sorry that should read Bank of Scotland …… or their shareholders……. or should that be the public purse?

The notable items in the 2006 accounts included the announcement of a ten year deal with JJB Sports to take over the merchandising operation of the club and increased revenue from an extended run in the Champion’s League. However, the profit before tax was declared at only£0.1 million in comparison to the £12.4 million of the year before but then again that £12.4 million had included player sales of £8.4 million and the £15 million sweety bonus from  the repurchase of ones own former subsidiary shares for £1.

Jumping to 2008 Rangers saw a record year in terms of turnover which had risen to £64.5 million which enabled the company to record a profit on ordinary activities before taxation of  £6.57 million although it should be pointed out that wages and bonuses were up at 77% of turnover and that a big factor in the Rangers income stream was corporate hospitality and the top line of income was shown as “gate receipts and hospitality”.

However, 2009 saw a calamitous set of figures. Whilst Alastair Johnston tried to put a brave chairman’s face on it, the year saw an operating loss of £17.325 million which was softened only by player disposals leading to a loss before taxation of a mere £14.085 million.

Fortunately Sir David did not have to report these figures as he chose to stand down as chairman in August and so Johnston stepped in and announced that he was deeply honoured to do so.

In 2010, the income stream jumped from £39.7 million to over £56 million with the result that the club showed a profit before taxation of £4.209 million.

However, by that time the corporate hospitality ticket that was Rangers Football Club was done for as a result of matters that had nothing to do with events on the football field in the main.

First, the emergence of the Fergus McCann run Celtic had brought a real business and sporting challenge. This was something that Murray had not previously faced in the football business.

Second,the Bank of Scotland had gone bust and Lloyds could not and would not allow Murray to continually borrow vast sums of money on the basis of revalued assets and outrageous hospitality.

Third, the UEFA fair play rules came into being and demanded that clubs at least act on a semblance of proper corporate governance and fiscal propriety.

Lastly,Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs tightened up the law on the use of EBT’s which meant that Rangers could no longer afford to buy in the players that brought almost guaranteed success against domestic opposition.

On average, since 2002 Rangers PLC had lost between £7 million – £8 million per year – or roughly £650,000 per month if you like – yet for the better part of a decade David Murray had been able to persuade the Bank of Scotland that this was a business that was worthy of ever greater financial support or that he himself and his MIH business was of such value that the Banks should support him in supporting the Ibrox club whilst operating in this fashion.

Of course, had Murray’s Rangers paid tax on all player remunerations then the losses would have been far larger.

Meanwhile, all the other clubs in Scottish football who banked with the Bank of Scotland faced funding cuts and demands for repayment with the bank publicly proclaiming that it was overexposed to the football market in Scotland.

But no one asked any questions about why the bank should act one way with Murray’s club but another way with all others. No one in football, no one in the media and no one from the world of business.

Looking back,it is hard to imagine a business which has been run on such a consistent loss making basis being allowed to continue by either its owners or by its bankers. However, a successful and funded Rangers was so important to the Murray group that David Murray was clearly willing to lose millions year after year to keep the Gala dinners and corporate hospitality going.

Rangers were Murray’s big PR vehicle and the club was essentially used by him to open the doors which would allow him to make more money elsewhere on a personal basis and if it meant Rangers cutting every corner and accumulating massive losses, unsustainable losses, then so be it.

Today, the new regime at Ibrox run the current business in a way which clocks up the same colossal annual losses whilst the club competes outwith Scotland’s top division. Each day we hear that the wage bill is unsustainable, that the playing staff are overpaid, that the stadium needs massive investment and that the fans are opposed to the stadium itself being mortgaged and the club being in hawk to lenders.

Yet, in the Murray era the Stadium was revalued time and time again and its revaluation was used as the justification for ever greater borrowing on the Rangers accounts. The playing staff were massively overpaid and financially assisted by the EBT’s and most years the Chairman’s annual statement announced huge losses despite regular claims of record season ticket sales, record hospitality income, European income, shirt sponsorship and the outsourcing of all merchandising to JJB sports instead of Sports Direct.

The comparison between the old business and the current one is clear for all to see.

It should be noted, that since the days of Murray, no major banking institution has agreed to provide the Ibrox business with any banking facilities. Not under Whyte, not under Green, not under anyone.

Yet few ask why that should be.

The destruction of the old Rangers business led those in charge of Scottish football to announce that Armageddon was on the horizon if it had not actually arrived, yet today virtually all Scottish clubs are in a better financial and business state than back in the bad old days of the Bank of Scotland financed SPL. Some have succumbed to insolvency, and others have simply cut their cloth, changed their structure, sought, and in some cases attracted, new owners and moved on in terms of business.

In general, Scottish Football has cleaned house at club level.

Now, David Murray has “cleaned house” in that MIH has bitten the dust and walked down insolvency road.

What is interesting is that the Murray brand still has that capacity to get out a good PR message when it needs to. Despite the MIH pension fund being short of money for some inexplicable reason, last week it was announced that the family controlled Murray Estates had approached those in charge of MIH and had agreed to buy some key MIH assets for something in the region of £13.9 million.

The assets concerned are land banks which at some point will be zoned for planning and which will undoubtedly bring the Murray family considerable profit in the future, with some of those assets already looking as if they will produce a return sooner rather than later.

However, what is not commented upon in the mainstream press is the fact that Murray Estates had the ability to pay £13.9 Million for anything at all and that having that amount of money to spend the Murray camp has chosen not to buy any football club down Govan way.

Perhaps, it has been realised that a football club which loses millions of pounds each year is not such a shrewd investment and that the Murray family money would be better spent elsewhere?

Perhaps, it has been realised that the culture of wining, dining, partying and entertaining to the most lavish and extravagant extent will not result in the banks opening their vaults any more?

Perhaps, it has been realised that the Rangers brand has been so badly damaged over the years that it is no longer the key to the golden door in terms of business, finance and banking and that running a football club in 2015 involves a discipline and a set of skills that David Murray and his team do not have experience of?

What is clear, is that the Murray years at Ibrox were not good for the average Rangers fan in the long term and that when you have a football club – any football club – being run for the private benefit of one rich individual, or group of individuals, then the feelings and passions of the ordinary fan will as often as not be forgotten when that individual or his group choose to move on once they have decided that they no longer wish to play with their toy football club.

David Murray did not make money directly out of Rangers Football Club. He used it as a key to open other doors for him and to get him a seat at other tables and into a different type of “club” altogether. He did not run the club in a day to day fashion that was designed to bring stability and prolonged financial, or playing, success to the club. its investors and its fans. He did not preside over Ibrox during a period of sustained financial gain.

Mike Ashley will not subsidise 2015 version of Rangers to anything like the same extent that the Bank of Scotland did in the 90’s and naughties.

However, Ashley, like Murray, will use his control of the Rangers brand to open doors for him elsewhere in the sports retail market, and he will use the Rangers contract with Sports Direct to make a handsome profit. He will also control all the advertising revenue just as he does at Newcastle. In short, Mr Ashley is only interested in The Rangers with a view to using it as a stepping stone to achieve other things elsewhere.

However, don’t take my word for any of this, take the opinion of someone who knows.

Mr Dave King is quoted today as saying the following about the current board of Directors who are in charge of the current Ibrox holding company.

“History will judge this board as one of the worst the club has ever had. There is not one individual who puts the club above personal interest.”

That is an interesting observation from a man who became a non executive director of the old Rangers holding company in 2000 and who had a front row pew for every set of accounts and all the financial statements referred to above.

Whether or not Mr King is a glib and shameless liar is a matter of South African judicial opinion. Whether or not he can spot someone who puts their own self interest ahead of the interests of Rangers Football Club and the supporters of the club is a matter that should be discussed over some fine wine, some succulent lamb and whatever postprandial entertainment you care to imagine.

I wonder if he has ever read the accounts of Rangers PLC and compared them to the corresponding accounts of MIH for the same period?

 

About the author

broganrogantrevinoandhogan author

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

4,992 Comments so far

Danish PastryPosted on6:58 am - Feb 25, 2015


The chap from Nil by Mouth on BBC Sportsound was very good. The Alloa chairman (at least I think it was him) was also on. I couldn’t really see where he was headed, though. Against strict liability, yet more must be done; clubs must do more, police must do more, SFA must do more, law of the land, blah blah. Hope I’m not doing him a disservice but it was a very conflicted statement of views, imo. Graham Spiers calling for a trial period of UEFA-type strict liabilty? Bravo him.

Another good piece by Phil yesterday. Two more directors heading to Ibrox on the back of the next £5m? This SFA v Ashley meeting looks doomed beforehand to be another SFA comedy, ‘The Impotence of Being Earnest’ 🙂

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Danish PastryPosted on7:23 am - Feb 25, 2015


So James Easdale resigns. Much rejoicing on social media. But who’s replacing him?

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wildwoodPosted on7:27 am - Feb 25, 2015


He doesn’t want to be associated with an insolvency event?

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jimlarkinPosted on8:01 am - Feb 25, 2015


BBC – muddying the water AGAIN

Rangers: James Easdale resigns from Ibrox board

Bus tycoon James Easdale has resigned from Rangers’ board, saying he is bowing to pressure from the Scottish Championship club’s supporters.
Easdale’s brother and business partner, Sandy, is football club chairman and controls more than 20% of club shares.”

……..

I thought they had to be clear between the CLUb and the Business?

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EKBhoyPosted on8:03 am - Feb 25, 2015


Simple solution re offensive songs , contain the pestilence, don’t go to Ibrox and refuse to provide away tickets, requires fan power to lead the way.

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andygraham.66Posted on8:55 am - Feb 25, 2015


For those interested, 27mins into the Times “Game” podcast this week there is a discussion about the link between Paris and what’s happening up here.

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tayredPosted on8:56 am - Feb 25, 2015


Hamerdoon says:
February 24, 2015 at 11:56 pm

– En masse – just don’t turn up – it’ll take two/three weekends to get a result, and with the spare time write to your MSPs demanding action.

While I agree that would be the most likely means by which finally we might provoke a response from the untouchables I have one problem with it. Outside Glasgow, no sorry outside of two clubs from Glasgow, many fans are finding this era of Scottish football to be more enjoyable that it has been for many year. Ok, so I’m an AFC fan, so yes this has been the most enjoyable period I can recall since perhaps Willie Miller had our guys playing some of the best football I had seen from a Scottish team (albeit ultimately unsuccessful in the trophy stakes – but then “bear” in mind just how uneven the playing field he was competing in).

So, my problem is why should a fan of a so-called provincial club have to resort to withdrawing their support of their club due to the behaviour of fans from those two Glasgow clubs that have continuously bludgeoned the life out of the rest of Scottish football for so many years?

Yes, ok the target here is the authorities, but the ultimately problem lies with just two clubs. Now that we have a slightly more level playing field, and the rest of us can actually dream of competing for trophies again why should we have to suffer thanks to the actions of, in this case, TRFC fans? Sorry, it’s not going to happen. How many Celtic fans were desperate to get to Hampden to see TRFC getting a doing? That was the time to withdraw attendance, that was the occasion that would have received maximum coverage – and it would have been massive coverage if one end of Hampden was empty. So let’s not now expect the rest of Scotland to help you clean up what is a very localised problem – if not geographically certainly demographically.

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Billy BoycePosted on8:57 am - Feb 25, 2015


jimlarkin says:
February 25, 2015 at 8:01 am

I thought they had to be clear between the CLUb and the Business?
________________________________

The two sports slots on Radio Scotland I listened to referred to James Easdale resigning “from the club”. There was no mention of James being a RIFC board member.

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BawsmanPosted on9:15 am - Feb 25, 2015


Pay cheques due this week, not enough Wonga in the kitty to stop the cheques being ‘the bouncy’ variety.

Big Mike is the man with the readies, will he offer the next £5 Million?

Is the price of the £5 Million another 2 seats on the board? Is the price the deeds of the asbestos dome?

Wonder if we will actually get to an EGM?

I can’t even imagine what the SFA hope happens, whatever it is, they will do the wrong thing.

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MaBawPosted on9:18 am - Feb 25, 2015


tayred, If almost every word i typed was an attack on one or two clubs with venom, do you think i would have a problem ?

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Danish PastryPosted on9:34 am - Feb 25, 2015


andygraham.66 says:
February 25, 2015 at 8:55 am
For those interested, 27mins into the Times “Game” podcast this week there is a discussion about the link between Paris and what’s happening up here.
———

Nice link, especially the specific minute mark. Don’t usually listen to this one. The English pods are nice — they watch the EPL so we don’t have to 🙂 I like Gabriele M. and was wondering where he’d got to. A very thoughtful and insightful person. Pundits’ take seemed to be that it’s two sets of fans shouting at each other … didn’t hear the Raith fans at all and my lugs are ok. But what an embarrassment for Scottish football to hear this discussed and then realise the white-flag response from SFA /SPFL.

PS Bawsman, the comedy of your last sentence made me laugh

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Matty RothPosted on9:34 am - Feb 25, 2015


EKBhoy says:
February 25, 2015 at 8:03 am
Simple solution re offensive songs , contain the pestilence, don’t go to Ibrox and refuse to provide away tickets, requires fan power to lead the way.

24 0 Rate This

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

I also think decent fans will need to lead the way on bringing about some action.

There could be a number of ways to do this but the key would be to get sufficient numbers backing any action taken. This would make it difficult for the media to hide and for clubs to ignore.

Fans really do have this within their power, but they have to work together.

Simple things could make a huge difference. For example imagine what would have happened if during the recent LCSF a large proportion of the Celtic fans simply walked out of the ground en masse as soon as the offensive stuff started. The game itself would quickly have become a side story.

Imagine if 10-20 thousand fans then contacted the SPFL to ask for their money back as they simply do not expect to need to listen to such an assault on their ears at a venue they have paid to enter. Demand a refund.

Fans of all teams could do this.

When the scum start singing this stuff in numbers, decent fans could simply leave the ground with the intention to demand repayment.

I’m certain within 2-3 games the clubs would suddenly be taking action – particularly if fans of different clubs acted consistently in this.

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tayredPosted on9:36 am - Feb 25, 2015


MaBaw says:
February 25, 2015 at 9:18 am

I assume you think I am overly hard on two clubs in particular? I read much here, I don’t often write. When I do it’s when I see the discussion heading off in one direction that I don’t agree with, or I have a problem with.

Now I’ll freely admit that often that is due to an inherent Celtic bias in this blog. I have no real problem with the existence of that bias, it’s a fact that there are simply way more Celtic supporters than any other single set of fans (outside TRFC and unfortunately, if understandably they don’t tend to say much here even if the bother to read it). I’d like to add that although I imagine the numbers are significantly swayed in one colour, the bias in general is well under control. There are times however, when lines are drawn in the sand that simply can never be overcome – such is the world of a football fan.

You see a response here from me when I disagree, you won’t often see a response when I agree. In that way perhaps I do appear to have one or two clubs constantly in the cross-hairs. It isn’t the case, I have what I perceive as injustice, inequality, arrogance and groups with an apparent sense of entitlement and self-importance in my sights along with some protection of my club when I feel it is required.

I would say that when I write what you regard as a venomous attack (and here comes the inexact science of reading the runes of the thumbs!), the numbers I see are always pretty close to the idea I have of the numbers of Celtic supporters versus the number of the rest (TRFC aside). That I hope means the view is often shared by many.

I dunno, you can never tell with these things! But still, this is a place of debate, I’m wide open to hear a response to my message and may well change my views accordingly.

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tearsofjoyPosted on9:52 am - Feb 25, 2015


Matty Roth says:

February 25, 2015 at 9:34 am

EKBhoy says:
February 25, 2015 at 8:03 am
Simple solution re offensive songs , contain the pestilence, don’t go to Ibrox and refuse to provide away tickets, requires fan power to lead the way.

24 0 Rate This

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

I also think decent fans will need to lead the way on bringing about some action.
***********************
Matty
It is happening already but not quite in the way you are suggesting. Not only that , when one club did act it was pilloried in the Glasgow media for doing so. I give you Ann Budge & HMFC.

AB has acted on complaints from Hearts fans. She is listening and she has acted. Sevco had their ticket allocation slashed by two thirds (cue the usual pathetic wailing from the blue quarter) and there was the general message about fan behavior following the visit of Celtic. While Regan & Doncaster hide behind the inaction of Police Scotland to deal with mob rule , I am hoping AB is making it clear mob rule (and perceived immunity from the consequences of such behavior) is not now going to happen. Hopefully sanity will prevail , if not , I hope she will persist to the point (if necessary) of giving the OF a handful of tickets thus removing the opportunity for mob rule and allowing Police Scotland to enforce the rule of law. Where this will take us and whether or not it will succeed remains to be seen. But it’s a start.

The problem is ……where are the others ? Aberdeen ? Dundee ? They have all had their own issues with the OF recently. What’s their position ?Time to stand up and be counted lads, if you REALLY want change.

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BawsmanPosted on10:02 am - Feb 25, 2015


Danish Pastry says:
February 25, 2015 at 9:34 am

PS Bawsman, the comedy of your last sentence made me laugh

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

Aye, sadly, tragi-comedy DP. They really need to be booted out of office.

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normanbatesmumfcPosted on10:03 am - Feb 25, 2015


jimlarkin says:

February 25, 2015 at 8:01 am

BBC – muddying the water AGAIN

Rangers: James Easdale resigns from Ibrox board

Bus tycoon James Easdale has resigned from Rangers’ board, saying he is bowing to pressure from the Scottish Championship club’s supporters.
Easdale’s brother and business partner, Sandy, is football club chairman and controls more than 20% of club shares.”
……………………………………………………..

It’s not even that difficult. James Easdale resigns from the board of the company that owns the company that operates the club.

Easdale’ brother and business partner Sandy remains chairman of the company operating the club.

But I suppose that’s the problem with peddling lies and mistruths. It’s less easy to remember the detail when you’re trying to get across a would-be positive message.

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Danish PastryPosted on10:10 am - Feb 25, 2015


tayred says:
February 25, 2015 at 9:36 am
———

As a native Glaswegian I, like yourself, perceive this first and foremost as an age-old Glasgow problem. In fact, Matty makes an excellent suggestion above. The LCSF was a perfect opportunity to take demonstrative action. There is also the possibilty of players walking off. Why shouldn’t they? Shame the authorities, shame the bigots, shame the broadcasters, shame the mostly silent journalists.

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Matty RothPosted on10:28 am - Feb 25, 2015


tearsofjoy says:
February 25, 2015 at 9:52 am

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

tearsofjoy, I’m afraid Hearts recent zero tolerance approach is something we don’t see enough of.

My view is that most of the clubs will only start to take real action when fans apply more pressure to demand that they do so. It makes me sad that is the case but its what the evidence seems to suggest.

Danish Pastry says:
February 25, 2015 at 10:10 am

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

I know you understand I just used the LCSF as an example but I did seem to attract a few thumbs down. So just in case anyone thinks I’m trying to blame Celtic fans for not doing this let me be really clear:

I’m suggesting a new approach, something that could be agreed by fan associations/clubs of all clubs and publicised on fans forums in advance of any action being taken. Solidarity between fans of all clubs would be essential to make this work.

I’m in no way saying Celtic fans should have done this at the LCSF or criticising them for not taking action themselves on that day.

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Danish PastryPosted on10:37 am - Feb 25, 2015


Cheers @Matty, yes, it’s the principle of thing. Very good idea.

Btw, the Requisitioners have a number of directors they want removed, well, all of them. What if 2-3 of them have resigned, or been replaced/supplimented by the date of the EGM? Can the Requisitioners change/introduce a new set of demands at the last minute?

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futbolPosted on10:59 am - Feb 25, 2015


parttimearab says:
February 24, 2015 at 7:56 pm

Looks like the SPFL have decided that the best way to stave off Armageddon is to dig up the corpse of the Texaco cup….

http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/31611760

RIP I say.

Trying to remain objective …

1. There’s a possibility of icnreased profile of the Scottish game, rather than the results being delivered/printed as if the league is a feeder to the lower leagues of England.

2. It could, in theory, bring more money to the game.

For #2 it may open doors into the TV-money-party that is English football.

My concerns are:

(a) When exactly are these games going to be played? Given the ever-shortening window of the offseason for teams in Europe and the ongoing debates about winter breaks, I can’t see a window for this. Unless it’s the teams that finish outside of European qualification? Or the two Championship winners? What if they win a cup?

(b) How much are the fans going to be fleeced for going to these games? There’d better be a sizeable income from TV and sponsorship.

I would hope that we can entrust those involved to have thought of the above. They have to do something to earn a crust in that bunker of theirs.

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neepheidPosted on11:05 am - Feb 25, 2015


Danish Pastry says:
February 25, 2015 at 10:37 am
Cheers @Matty, yes, it’s the principle of thing. Very good idea.

Btw, the Requisitioners have a number of directors they want removed, well, all of them. What if 2-3 of them have resigned, or been replaced/supplimented by the date of the EGM? Can the Requisitioners change/introduce a new set of demands at the last minute?

===============================
That’s a good question. So far as I know, the requisitioners can’t now amend the motions.

I wondered when I heard that Easdale had gone, whether Ashley could get Llambias, Leach and Somers to resign, at the same time putting his 2 new nominees on the Board. Those nominees would then be the only directors, so they could hold a quick meeting and appoint another two of Ashley’s men, giving Ashley 4 directors.

At the EGM, the motions to dismiss the old Board would be irrelevant, since the named directors on the requisition would already have gone. Then even if King got the 3 directors he wants voted on, Ashley would still have a 4/3 majority, and boardroom control. But that is me being far too cynical, surely?

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bfbpuzzledPosted on11:06 am - Feb 25, 2015


Sad as I am to say it is not only the large Glasgow clubs which have a problem. I have heard Clyde supporters rant furiously about the ethnicity and perceived Catholic faith of players, in particular one playing for Airdrie ( who have had issues also). OK this was a few individuals but it surprised me.

On an unrelated note Broawood would have been much less uncomfortable if the main stand had been built on the other side of the pitch thus sheltering home supporters from the prevailing wind rather than facing its arrival all the way from the south seas.

While on a rant, I recall the DR writing a sneeringly racist piece about the villagers in Croy after a Celtic game at Broadwood followed by an apology which was worse than the offence.

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AuldheidPosted on11:06 am - Feb 25, 2015


Caveat Emptor

I did not even watch the game on TV.

I took the decision 53 years ago as a teenager after going to a Rangers v Celtic game at Ibrox never to subject myself to the hate coming from both sides.

It forms the basis of a contribution I made to Bigotry, Football and Scotland published by Edinburgh University Press.

As a most recent work on the subject from an academic perspective ( I was the non academic supporter contributor) I am surprised no journos have contacted it’s authors.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Bigotry-Football-Scotland-John-Flint/dp/0748670378

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valentinesclownPosted on11:10 am - Feb 25, 2015


Celtic correctly fined by EUFA for fans misbehaving in Europe. To the SFA how difficult is it to punish a club (if the club seems not be able to control their fans) if fans sing sectarian/racist songs. We cannot keep hearing these songs, we cannot keep listening to SMSM saying it is a minority. We cannot here feeble excuses that the club is doing everything in it’s power. Simply punish the club how difficult is it really?

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wottpiPosted on11:14 am - Feb 25, 2015


My guess is that ‘strict liability’ won’t make a difference to the vast majority of SPFL if introduced domestically.

There are however those that already have an issue with the consequences of the UEFA stance.

http://sport.stv.tv/football/clubs/celtic/311417-celtic-hit-with-10000-uefa-fine-for-zagreb-crowd-disturbances/

Once again it would be useful to know who voted for what when this matter was discussed in 2013.

Having already been hit with UEFA fines and now yet another, one would have hoped Celtic were for the domestic proposals as another measure to rid themselves of their own particular band idiots.

That being said relatively small fines to clubs awash with cash isn’t going to do the trick. Closed doors and points deductions, chucked out of competitions is the way forward.

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The Cat NR1Posted on11:19 am - Feb 25, 2015


justshatered says:
February 24, 2015 at 8:22 pm

Doncaster’s latest statement has got me thinking.

When the RFC tumbled into Administration I soon formed the opinion that Doncaster and Regan had been hand picked to perform certain duties in their posts. That they were outsiders was perfect for those within the Hampden bunker. They could be shown graphs, crowd statistics, videos of big European nights and championship days; who would doubt that the incumbents of Ibrox would not be required in the top tier of Scottish football?

The fact that this success was funded by the tax payer, through an insolvent bank, is neither here nor there. Now if the two ‘outsiders’ had been shown videos of the early eighties, where there were huge gaps in the stadium and a distinct lack of success, would they have formed a different view?
In my opinion from day one Doncaster and Regan have be spun a tale and the sporting ethos, as well as integrity, has been wantonly disregarded.

That was all well and good in the beginning however these two guys have had plenty of time to bring themselves up to speed but no they have become as greedy as two aging politicians. They have been rewarded for their previous actions with two plum roles in the new setup. They know what the score is now. They are in too deep. I think even they know that anyone with a shred of decency looking at this spectacle would have a long list of questions to ask them.

They may have arrived as convenient patsy’s but they became part of the problem a long time ago.
===========================
I can certainly agree with the above WRT Doncaster.

After nearly destroying NCFC with his incompetence, I was astounded of forehead when he got the SPL gig. Well, astounded in an understatement, absolutely feckin irate and angrier than a raging bear is more like it.

At the time, I concluded that those who appointed him were either totally incompetent themselves, or there was another more convoluted explanation. However, I dismissed that as being the result of the kicking in of the default paranoia as regards all things Scottish football.

Subsequent events have revealed that anything is possible in the charade of Scottish football governance, and that no amount of paranoia was sufficient, so dismissing the alternatives in favour of incompetence may have been premature. Either way, it is still worrying for the future well-being of the game.

Was an adequate explanation ever given as to why David Longmuir was overlooked in favour of ND for the SPFL gig, other than the hushed-up bonus payment scandal? That seemed a slightly far-fetched reason, given RCO’s bomb-proof status in the bunker despite his involvement in the RFC(IL) DOS wee tax case.

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TartanwulverPosted on11:23 am - Feb 25, 2015


STV framing the Doncaster ‘masterclass’ in an appropriately tongue in cheek fashion

http://sport.stv.tv/football/clubs/rangers/311631-football-talk-rangers-in-for-dougie-freedman-messi-proves-to-be-human/

It’s not alcohol they need to start serving at football grounds, it’s hallucinogenic drugs. That way we can maybe all have a chance of seeing football in the same way that Doncaster, Regan, SMSM, et al appear to be seeing it

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wottpiPosted on11:24 am - Feb 25, 2015


Does the man who is third on the share ownership league title along with being owed £5m (soon to be £10m?) from a loss making company and the beneficiary of retail contracts that depend on the success of the company/club not deserve representation on the board to protect his interests.

I’m with Neepheid above in that, if it is fair game, new appointments to the board for the good of corporate governance could be on the horizon.

Announcement as usual late on Friday night anyone? 🙂

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Ron.an.MathPosted on11:30 am - Feb 25, 2015


tayred . . . I happily admit to inevitable bias . .
I ASPIRE to objectivity . . thats the best I can do . .
Its why I prefer sites like this as opposed to the more club-centric sites (not knocking them . .they also have their merits)
I will ALWAYS take issue with the “equivalence arguement” however . .
The reason stan collymores intrrvention is important is that it emphasises the similarity of the experience against the difference in response . . .At least in 2015 the majority are horrified at the racist and discriminatory behavior on the paris metro . .
Tayred if you ever get scunnered by fitba you can I imagine look elsewhere for a sports fix . . golf ? bowls ? Straightforward process I suspect . . BUT.
Not for me . In 2015 . . 2015 ! . . I will have to restrict my golf club or bowls club application to those which either no longer or have never discriminated against people from my background . .
Please excuse the clumsiness of my anology but even in 2015 things that YOU just take for granted are still denied to such as me . . this contributes to my/our bias .Paticularily with regard to our craven cowardly media .
With one or to exceptions (respect spency . . )
A black man is not being racist by being black and neither is a catholic being sectarian by being catholic . . please dont lazily equate the victims of racism and sectarianism with the perpetrators of those acts. . . golly . .glad I got THAT of my chest . . cheers guys ! 😆

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AuldheidPosted on11:42 am - Feb 25, 2015


Further to my previous this is an insightful look at the issue from a fellow contributor to Bigotry Football and Scotland if my memory serves me.

http://www.therangersstandard.co.uk/index.php/articles/rfc-politics/336-fighting-the-old-battles-rangers-and-sectarianism

Ps. Mr Speirs is going to get a copy.

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wottpiPosted on11:45 am - Feb 25, 2015


jambocol1874 says:
February 25, 2015 at 11:25 am

What I want to know is why the smaller clubs voted Regan’s proposals down and what pressure was put on them to do so?

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

The trouble is that with the lack of transparency you cannot make that statement.

My reading was a vote of 75% was required to bring in ‘Strict Liability’therefore lets say 31 of the 42 senior clubs were in favour it still wouldn’t do the trick.

Maybe the big clubs did vote for it, maybe many of the lower clubs didn’t fancy it due to the hassle.

Lords knows what the Hearts stance would have been in 2013 but one would hope from recent events today’s board would be all for it

Once again fans left in the lurch.

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tayredPosted on11:46 am - Feb 25, 2015


Ron.an.Math says:
February 25, 2015 at 11:30 am

I completely agree, and I’m sorry if my comments suggest otherwise. In my experience one side of the big Glasgow two has made massive strides in their fights against certain aspects of society, the other… well not so many, in fact they have frequently skirted with what appears to be approval or at least exploitation of the fact.

But, what I hoped I had said (although its a minefield of a topic to discuss so other people may well not have read it this way) is that the problem is like it or not, closely associated with 2 clubs (and more loosely with a few others perhaps). I don’t believe for example Inverness, Aberdeen, Partick, Raith have much if any history of this particular problem (they may well have their own problems though) and as such it would be difficult to expect fans of any of those clubs to make a stand and stop attending games etc based on some anti-sectarianism debate. Its simply not applicable to them.

Not applicable except for a few who will use it to provoke/wind-up the opposition when the opposition are heavily implicated in such a history. I don’t condone that, it too is wrong. It is alas what some sections of football crowds are often like, and particularly away supports – they simply want to provoke a response. I would hope that any movement in the future to tackle the inherent problems at Ibrox would also drag away those who do it purely for this reason.

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smartie1947Posted on11:49 am - Feb 25, 2015


There is a fairly hard-hitting article by Graham Spiers in today’s Scottish edition of The Times. As it is subscription-only I am loathe to copy and paste it here. Suffice it to say, it runs to 5 columns, taking up at least 2/3rds of a whole page and is headed “And still we don’t attack the stain on our reputation.” The header reads ” Graham Spiers says it is farcical that sectarian chanting is still alive and kicking today”
I can’t reproduce the whole article but some of it referred to 2006 when the late David Taylor advocated closing stands and deducting points for the offence. It would have required a change in the SFA’s constitution.
Since then nothing.
His main criticism is of the SFA and the SPFL and he is particularly scathing of Neil Doncaster.
He advocates adopting as an interim measure, UEFA’s “strict liability” position as a start and mentions Celtic falling foul of it in recent years.
That said he believes the overwhelming culprits are the Rangers fans where a “so-called” minority of fans can still seem alarmingly large.
All in all an excellent article, including damning criticism of both Labour and SNP for their failure to implement the laws they enacted.
Graham Spiers comes in for a fair amount of panning in this forum, but today’s article is one of his best.
Oh that it could have been published in one of Scotland’s redtops.

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HamerdoonPosted on12:02 pm - Feb 25, 2015


Thank you for contacting BT Sport about the issue of sectarian chanting. We appreciate you taking the time to get in touch with us.

We recognise that inappropriate behaviour by fans at live sporting events has the potential to cause offence. We try to prevent this by, for example, adjusting microphone settings so that offensive chants are less likely to be fully audible. We did this for the Raith Rovers v Rangers game on Friday evening.

We need to strike a balance between putting in place this kind of measure and ensuring that home viewers can feel the atmosphere of the game they’re watching. We’ve reviewed our broadcast of the Raith Rovers v Rangers match and don’t believe offensive chanting was easily discernible by most viewers.

Nevertheless, we do take on board your views and shall continue to pay close attention to this matter for future broadcasts. We’ve made clear that as an organisation we won’t tolerate racism or sectarianism.
———————————————————————

Hello ———–

You don’t accept offensive chanting was easily discernible? Quite simply, that is a ludicrous statement and is an unacceptable response.

Please tell me how my complaint can be directed to a higher BT authority and external regulator.

Kind regards

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The Cat NR1Posted on12:03 pm - Feb 25, 2015


valentinesclown says:
February 25, 2015 at 11:10 am

Celtic correctly fined by EUFA for fans misbehaving in Europe. To the SFA how difficult is it to punish a club (if the club seems not be able to control their fans) if fans sing sectarian/racist songs. We cannot keep hearing these songs, we cannot keep listening to SMSM saying it is a minority. We cannot here feeble excuses that the club is doing everything in it’s power. Simply punish the club how difficult is it really?
=========================
Clearly, the club is not doing all it can.

Resticting their fans’ away ticket sales and closing sections of the home ground are within the club’s own powers. Just for starters.

They have no incentive to do that, because there is no stick in the stick and carrot approach of the authorities. If the SFA/SPFL were remotely serious about the siutation, they would at least have issued statements making an unequivocal condemnation of the situation. Just for starters.

Living down south and looking in from the outside, I can only conclude that the authorities are in agreement with what is happening, given their lack of any fit for purpose public condemnation.

The contrast with the way that the Paris Metro racist behaviour was dealt with in England is beyond belief. There were people falling over each other to condemn what happened and cross-border co-operation to deal with something that involved only a handful of people. There was no hiding behind the scary cushion or settee and hoping it all goes away. The government, individual politicians, football authorities, the club, the club manager, the club captain, former players, fans groups, all of whom could have avoided the issue, universally condemned what happened.

The mealy-mouthed and quite frankly disgraceful response to a racist incident (not the first, of course) involving thousands of people in an allegedly civilised country in the 21st century is more shocking than the incident itself.

Those appeasers should take a good look at themselves in the mirror, and perhaps they could ask themselves in what type of country would they like their children and grandchildren to grow up? Perhaps, in their paralysed minds they could substitute the word Yiddish or Jewish for Fenian and then think back to the 1930s if they are still struggling to understand what is happening under their noses. Or perhaps ni**ers’, p*ki, or Islamic would elicit a response?

I was never a big fan of Stan Collymore, but he now has my total respect for finally trying to bring Scottish football to book for allowing this unacceptable situation to continue ad nauseum.
Why should he have to, though?

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futbolPosted on12:13 pm - Feb 25, 2015


Hamerdoon says:
February 25, 2015 at 12:02 pm

“Thank you for contacting BT Sport … don’t believe offensive chanting was easily discernible by most viewers.”

I think you’re quite entitled to ask how they came to that conclusion.

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HamerdoonPosted on12:14 pm - Feb 25, 2015


tayred says:

February 25, 2015 at 8:56 am
—————————————————

Tayred, I agree with much of what you say. But IMO the inevitable outcome of such an approach is that we default back to what went before, and your club gets to be cannon fodder yet again. The issue is that the SFA will not address the inherent bias and sectarian nonesense. We address one issue, then we start to address all. I really do think it is as simple as that. I appreciate that at the moment things are going well for your club, ask yourself why……and then think of it as a siuation that will disappear soon – or it could be totally different with a much more level playing field from now on.

I understand your reticence, I really do. But the action is not just for the moment, it’s for the whole future of the game.

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tayredPosted on12:23 pm - Feb 25, 2015


The Cat NR1 says:
February 25, 2015 at 12:03 pm
The contrast with the way that the Paris Metro racist behaviour was dealt with in England is beyond belief. There were people falling over each other to condemn what happened and cross-border co-operation to deal with something that involved only a handful of people.
————————————————————-

That incident got blanket coverage across all media outlets from the very next morning. It makes you wonder why the incidents being discussed here are never taken up by the media.

We know why they don’t up here – lamb, cowardice, dodgy handshakes and the threat of violence against them and their families. But national broadcasters and the national newspapers? Why do they turn their backs on this? What’s their incentive to stay quiet? It’s not like the English press don’t normally like to point the finger at what’s wrong with other countries…

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nawlitePosted on12:31 pm - Feb 25, 2015


Hamerdoon, having emailed the BT chairman on the Thursday before the Raith game (after they had ‘shunted’ Stan Collymore), I also received this morning the same standard response to my fairly detailed email. I’ll be going back to them challenging their view that they “don’t believe offensive chanting was easily discernible by most viewers.”

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tayredPosted on12:57 pm - Feb 25, 2015


Hamerdoon says:
February 25, 2015 at 12:14 pm

Yeah, and I do have a lot of sympathy with what you and many others here have said about it. Apathy is a big barrier though – people have been disgusted about this topic for many years. I recall going to my first Old Firm games at Pittodrie in the early 80’s and at first being wowed by the level of noise that was generated by the away fans in the old beach end enclosure (little did I know the acoustics in there were so good! I recall a cup game against Arbroath I think in which ten guys lined up along a bench and did a Mexican wave and successfully made quite a racket!).

I had no idea what they were singing about (the Old firm fans not those from Arbroath), it never occurred to me to even consider the topics, I was confused as to why they were singing about this bloke called Billy then there was Bobby someone who was deed. My parents were obviously uneasy about it, didn’t really want to talk about it, and looking back I was perhaps lucky that I ever got back to an Old Firm game after I tried to get answers from them. Then of course arriving in Glasgow to work and being asked that morning what school I went to…. took me a minute to wonder what that was about cos it had never been relevant to my life before.

Thats the problem, folk outside Glasgow really don’t care (allow me the generalisation about it being Glasgow only, you know what I mean). It irritates them no end, but after years of complaining about it and seeing nothing done about it what do you think would cause them to start being more pro-active now?

It’s become a shrug of the shoulders topic, ach it’ll never change is the usual response. The only people that can change it are those responsible. Folks elsewhere have been fed up with it for decades, fed up with being ignored for decades and yet now suddenly we are being asked to stop going to games because of it.

I’m not saying that is the right or wrong response, it’s just the way it is I’m afraid. People get used to being ignored, our disgust has counted for little for years.

I just pray that someday it will all end and we can look back in disbelief that these discussion even needed to take place.

Scottish football needs a vocal Arbroath support

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AmFearLiathMòrPosted on1:04 pm - Feb 25, 2015


bfbpuzzled says:

February 25, 2015 at 11:06 am

I think I can safely say that you must have been at one of the few games where that must have happened then, because in all the Clyde games I’ve attended over the years, I’ve never once heard someone be picked out for abuse due to their perceived religious confession. I’ve heard plenty of suggestions that Bully Wee managers should go forth and multiply,much abuse aimed at players deemed to be performing below the required level, stick dished out to Partick Thistle, a well padded Stirling Albion centre back be loudly told he had ‘an arse like Beyonce’, and plenty of vitriol aimed at the current incumbent due to his obsession with all things sevco and perception that it’s to our detriment, but the only thing that comes close is a cheer whenever the half-time scores are read out and Celtic are losing, although Rangers losing gets much the same reaction.

I’m not saying it hasn’t happened, but you can’t pick out one incident and claim that is entirely representative of a fanbase all the time. If it happened on a regular basis, then that would be a different story…..

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tomtomPosted on1:16 pm - Feb 25, 2015


Paulmac2 says:
February 25, 2015 at 12:03 am
If the club cannot be punished then it stands to reason the SFA has the responsibility to prevent the identified group from attending similar events…either by playing behind closed doors or witholding away tickets…

Within 2 games it will stop…that is how easy it is…unless of course you support racism.
=============================
When the offence takes place at an away ground, in addition to a ban on the travelling support, the offending club should be fined an amount equal to or exceeding their ticket allocation for their next away game. This money should then be given to the opposition as they shouldn’t suffer from the drop in revenue due to a ban on the travelling support.

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wottpiPosted on1:23 pm - Feb 25, 2015


jambocol1874 says:
February 25, 2015 at 12:10 pm

I think the example you give is maybe part of the problem in that there was perhaps a fear from smaller clubs that a fining system would penalize them to a far greater extent than a larger club.

One could argue that ‘sticks and stones’ etc therefore thousands belting out the BB may not be viewed as as heinous a crime as fans attacking a manager in his technical area.

Therefore a smaller club could potentially be fined an amount that represents a large percentage of their income based on the actions of one mad fan.

I wouldn’t be surprised if as opposed to pressure from anyone the motion was not passed due to lack of detail.

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erniePosted on1:27 pm - Feb 25, 2015


On the “strict liability” vote; this was an SFA motion put to the 93 member clubs (not just the SPFL members) and 5% voted for it. That’s 5 clubs. For the avoidance of doubt I’m ashamed to speculate with almost complete certainty that my lot (AFC) weren’t one of them. In fact I doubt very much if any big club did or we’d have heard all about it.
Same old same old, all clubs or any single club could do something about this if they wanted to. They choose not to. I hope they are forced into strict liability.

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mcfcPosted on1:38 pm - Feb 25, 2015


I note that the AIM announcement of James Easdale’s resignation has reverted to using ‘(“Rangers” the “Club” or the “Company”)’. Previously “club” had been dropped in announcements amid speculation that oldco liquidator BDO had objected to its usage.
Anyway, the announcement seems to be an object lesson in non-communication, so maybe this sub-edited version will be of some assistance to the uninitiated.

Directorate Change

Rangers Rangers International Football Club plc (RIFC) announces that James Easdale has resigned from the Boards of the Company RIFC and Rangers Football Club Limited (TRFC) with immediate effect. He leaves Rangers RIFC and TRFC having never received any remuneration, bonus or compromise payment during his time at the Club either company. He would like to thank all the fans and shareholders who supported him and wishes the club The Rangers Football Club team a speedy return (sic) to the top flight of Scottish football and beyond.

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AuldheidPosted on1:57 pm - Feb 25, 2015


ernie says:

February 25, 2015 at 1:27 pm

On the “strict liability” vote; this was an SFA motion put to the 93 member clubs (not just the SPFL members) and 5% voted for it. That’s 5 clubs. For the avoidance of doubt I’m ashamed to speculate with almost complete certainty that my lot (AFC) weren’t one of them. In fact I doubt very much if any big club did or we’d have heard all about it.
Same old same old, all clubs or any single club could do something about this if they wanted to. They choose not to. I hope they are forced into strict liability.
===============
All the evidence is that football cannot be trusted to police itself, but is allowed to.

By whom?

By us.

Like a spoiled child given everything it demands. it then demands everything and expects it.

It starts with FIFA who wield more power than Governments. Why? Because no Government wants to tackle what is/was such a popular pastime.

However the times are a changing. Demands that Sky money should go to reduce ticket prices rather than an another BMW on a player’s driveway are now being heard.

There should be no question of football being able to avoid liability, it should be made to. Only Government can do that.

Punishments or sanctions have to be proportionate to the size of the crime, the club’s ability to meet the punishment and the effectiveness of the punishment in corrective terms.

A couple of closed door matches to the offending support should do the trick. A levy from prize money could set up a fund to compensate clubs losing out on attendances in such circumstances.

it should not be beyond football’s wit to come up with answers if they have to. Its not having to that is the problem. also known as being unaccountable.

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mcfcPosted on2:29 pm - Feb 25, 2015


I have mixed feelings about Tom English’s reportage – mainly negative I must admit – but he does seems to have hit the tonal nail squarely on the head here with regard to the inaction of RIFC, SPFL, SFA and Police Scotland over mass sectarian chanting – although he falls short of calling out sectarianism as anti-catholic to match the terminology of anti-semetism – and no mention of chants refering to Stan Collymore – perhaps that is the less couragous side of Mr English. http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/scotland/31612922

In case it is needed, for the hard of reading, he does emphasise that whilst a Russian oligarch and a pair of career pornographers have publically slammed sectarian and racist behaviour, the club,, the media, the police, the political class, the church leaders and all other members of the establishment in Scotland have been hiding behind their sofas with their hands over their mouths – Shame on Scotland. Shame

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bfbpuzzledPosted on2:35 pm - Feb 25, 2015


Re Broadwood abuse. The incident sticks in my mind because I had never heard it before and never since. Yes there is plenty of abuse and I could almost tell to the minute how far into a game we were by certain individuals Pavlovian complaints. I am not for a second tarring the bully wee fans with any sectarian problem that would simply be wrong. Even when that other team from Glasgow came (you know who I mean) the welcome was robust but never with a hint of the illegal

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mcfcPosted on2:44 pm - Feb 25, 2015


Just a thought, to assist the SFA, SPFL RIFC and Police Scotland identify sectarian chants, maybe the opposing fans and the fabled, decent The Rangers fans could chant “racist chants” in response.

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The Cat NR1Posted on2:46 pm - Feb 25, 2015


tayred says:
February 25, 2015 at 12:23 pm

The Cat NR1 says:
February 25, 2015 at 12:03 pm
The contrast with the way that the Paris Metro racist behaviour was dealt with in England is beyond belief. There were people falling over each other to condemn what happened and cross-border co-operation to deal with something that involved only a handful of people.
————————————————————-

That incident got blanket coverage across all media outlets from the very next morning. It makes you wonder why the incidents being discussed here are never taken up by the media.

We know why they don’t up here – lamb, cowardice, dodgy handshakes and the threat of violence against them and their families. But national broadcasters and the national newspapers? Why do they turn their backs on this? What’s their incentive to stay quiet? It’s not like the English press don’t normally like to point the finger at what’s wrong with other countries…
==================================
Using the word sectarian rather than racist for starters.

Centuries of “sectarianism” has made it a parochial issue in the English MSM. It is an alien concept to the English, with some kind of Northern Irish echo, so best ignored in true English tradition when it comes to the post-Empire world view.

The lazy and uninformed “Old Firm” bollox surrounding the recent semi-final of the League Cup presented by QTS, shows the large knowledge gap that exists. The easy pigeon holing of “Protestant” Rangers and “Catholic” Celtic reinforces the stereotypical view within the EMSM and that is then projected to the English public, who generally regard the SPFL as a pub league. That negative and disparaging attitude is not going to change with naysayers like Doomcaster selling the game.

Racism no longer has its public face through English football, but that does not mean that racism does not exist in English society. The improved situation at football goes back to the Taylor Report and the subsequent change in demographics amongst those at the games as prices increased and facilities improved. EPL & UEFA Champions League wouldn’t generate obscene amounts of money were it not for the sanitised environments in which their games take place.

As was mentioned very early in the Sevco fiasco, Scottish football is addicted to the bogit pound. Once that addiction is cured, progress can be made. Is that few bob really worth more than a decent TV deal, a decent league and cup sponsorship package, and the potential loss of a whole generation of fans who turned their back on the game?

2012 was a wasted opportunity. 2015 has illustrated that graphically.

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Nell DoncasterPosted on2:50 pm - Feb 25, 2015


Have the SPFL considered for one minute, the possible effect on Scottish Football’s (already tarnished) reputation, if we allow these marauding hoardes to venture south for “Texaco Cup” 2nd legs.

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The Cat NR1Posted on2:50 pm - Feb 25, 2015


mcfc says:
February 25, 2015 at 2:44 pm

Just a thought, to assist the SFA, SPFL RIFC and Police Scotland identify sectarian chants, maybe the opposing fans and the fabled, decent The Rangers fans could chant “racist chants” in response.
==========================
Show Racism the Red Card. Nice and simple.
http://www.srtrc.org/

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Danish PastryPosted on2:51 pm - Feb 25, 2015


neepheid says:
February 25, 2015 at 11:05 am

That’s a good question. So far as I know, the requisitioners can’t now amend the motions.

I wondered when I heard that Easdale had gone, whether Ashley could get Llambias, Leach and Somers to resign, at the same time putting his 2 new nominees on the Board. Those nominees would then be the only directors, so they could hold a quick meeting and appoint another two of Ashley’s men, giving Ashley 4 directors.

At the EGM, the motions to dismiss the old Board would be irrelevant, since the named directors on the requisition would already have gone. Then even if King got the 3 directors he wants voted on, Ashley would still have a 4/3 majority, and boardroom control. But that is me being far too cynical, surely?
———–

@neep, one man’s cynic is another man’s realist, at least as far as this story goes. A smarter motion might have been for the removal of the ‘current board’. Of course, that might be somewhere in the small print.

Funny thought though, an EGM to remove board members who’ve already resigned/been removed!

Odd that this sort of thing never happened with the old ‘holding company’ :irony:

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mcfcPosted on3:07 pm - Feb 25, 2015


The Cat NR1 says:
February 25, 2015 at 2:46 pm

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

Agree, but I think it is important to note that English football was the last public vent for things totally unacceptable elsewhere in society eg streets, pubs, parks, cinemas – specifically racist chanting and mindless violence based on clothes worn by strangers.

English football came to understood that those attracted to the vent were keeping more profitable custoemrs away and devaluing the product for TV.

These behaviours were discouraged and eradicated professionally and methodically. That some English football is now very expensive is an entirely separate issue. Increased pricing did not address racism and violence.

Scottish football now has the same opportunity to be a more pleasant and more profitable sport without increasing the cost to decent fans. They have a perfect model to follow with the benefit of superior, low cost technology. The only things missing are the undersatanding and the collective will to act.

Scottish football is still a vent for behaviour unacceptable anywhere else in mainland Britain. Let me be blunt. In social terms Scotland stands with Russian, Bulgaria, Hungary and other former eastermn bloc countries when it comes to racism – albeit a particular parochial racism.

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The Cat NR1Posted on3:09 pm - Feb 25, 2015


mcfc says:
February 25, 2015 at 1:38 pm

I note that the AIM announcement of James Easdale’s resignation has reverted to using ‘(“Rangers” the “Club” or the “Company”)’. Previously “club” had been dropped in announcements amid speculation that oldco liquidator BDO had objected to its usage.
Anyway, the announcement seems to be an object lesson in non-communication, so maybe this sub-edited version will be of some assistance to the uninitiated.

Directorate Change

Rangers Rangers International Football Club plc (RIFC) announces that James Easdale has resigned from the Boards of the Company RIFC and Rangers Football Club Limited (TRFC) with immediate effect. He leaves Rangers RIFC and TRFC having never received any remuneration, bonus or compromise payment during his time at the Club either company. He would like to thank all the fans and shareholders who supported him and wishes the club The Rangers Football Club team a speedy return (sic) to the top flight of Scottish football and beyond.
=============================
It looks like they have confused the word “club” with the word “group”, which would be more appropriate in a statement to the stock market.
They should save the “club” nonsense for the press release to the munchers. :slamb: :slamb: :slamb:

Has he done walking away? Surely not.
More likely, MA is getting ready to repel boarders and JA was seen as a potential risk given his “Rangersness”.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/31618423
At least their online fanzine managed to get the words tycoon and Rangers in the first sentence of the reportage. Yet more :slamb: At least they avoided shoehorning the ubiquitous “jetted” into the yarn, or maybe that is only used when DK is the subject of the fawning.

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The Rangers nil? Who missed the penalty?Posted on3:10 pm - Feb 25, 2015


Hamerdoon says:
February 25, 2015 at 12:02 pm

nawlite says:
February 25, 2015 at 12:31 pm

BT’s assertion that the sustained chants such as “You’re just a B…. F….. B……” wasn’t easily discernible by most viewers is perfectly feasible, since the majority of the viewers had probably muted the sound to avoid listening to the turgid and inane witterings of the commentary team (David Rae and Gary McAllister ?).

You might help your case by directing them to 38 minutes (approx) into the match (not into the broadcast) where that particular chant is clearly audible and sustained.

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neepheidPosted on3:12 pm - Feb 25, 2015


Danish Pastry says:
February 25, 2015 at 2:51 pm

Odd that this sort of thing never happened with the old ‘holding company’ :irony:
====================================

“Sir” David Murray always had complete shareholder control, I don’t think anyone else had nearly enough shares to call an EGM. It was all very dignified, the peasants weren’t revolting (well, not in the sense of causing problems for SDM 🙄 ) the manager wore a suit and club tie at ALL times, and all was well in the big hoose- except of course it wasn’t.

The bank ran the show in the end, but were kind enough to deal discreetly with SDM behind closed doors in Charlotte Square. No dirty washing in public, please. Dignity is the key.

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Nell DoncasterPosted on3:22 pm - Feb 25, 2015


£5,190,000,000 sky deal for England.
England represents approx 85% of UK

£2or3,000,000 sky deal for Scotland
Scotland represents approx 8.5% of UK

Wish I had studied harder in Maths class!

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jimlarkinPosted on3:24 pm - Feb 25, 2015


Maybe the SNP should invite the Greek FA over for a bit of advice to sort out the sectarianism in football grounds.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/31627613

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The Cat NR1Posted on3:34 pm - Feb 25, 2015


mcfc says:
February 25, 2015 at 3:07 pm

The Cat NR1 says:
February 25, 2015 at 2:46 pm

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

Agree, but I think it is important to note that English football was the last public vent for things totally unacceptable elsewhere in society eg streets, pubs, parks, cinemas – specifically racist chanting and mindless violence based on clothes worn by strangers.

English football came to understood that those attracted to the vent were keeping more profitable custoemrs away and devaluing the product for TV.

These behaviours were discouraged and eradicated professionally and methodically. That some English football is now very expensive is an entirely separate issue. Increased pricing did not address racism and violence.

Scottish football now has the same opportunity to be a more pleasant and more profitable sport without increasing the cost to decent fans. They have a perfect model to follow with the benefit of superior, low cost technology. The only things missing are the undersatanding and the collective will to act.

Scottish football is still a vent for behaviour unacceptable anywhere else in mainland Britain. Let me be blunt. In social terms Scotland stands with Russian, Bulgaria, Hungary and other former eastermn bloc countries when it comes to racism – albeit a particular parochial racism.
=====================
Agreed re pricing, but the upward creep would not have been possible without the cleansing.
I didn’t intend to imply a direct causal relationship between pricing and specific behaviour, so I probably could have worded that more articulately. However, the increase in the potential market has created a supply and demand imbalance, and that has led to unregulated price inflation. Your paragraph re the SPFL is spot on, and is a damning endictment of the current regime’s “more of the same” approach.

Off-topic, EPL football now displays many economic characteristics of a luxury good market.

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easyJamboPosted on3:35 pm - Feb 25, 2015


SPFL statement on recent incidents – kick the can down the road a bit.

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/B-sz9kDWkAA3rv5.jpg

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nawlitePosted on3:38 pm - Feb 25, 2015


The Rangers nil? Who missed the penalty? says:

February 25, 2015 at 3:10 pm
———————————-
I was almost more angered by BT’s ‘shunning’ of Collymore for raising the issue re the LCFC than I was by the sectarian singing itself. It was the first time in a while that a UK name had commented and it had raised some awareness/discussion UK-wide, so I thought it appalling that BT shut this spotlight down by seeming to punish Collymore, thereby giving succour to the Rangers fans who have taken that – and the SPFL/SFA inaction – as evidence that they can get away with it.

It was for that reason I watched the raith game (some of it anyway) and clearly heard more of the usual songs. I heard them sing about Collymore too, but confess I didn’t hear what you’ve suggested. I heard ‘Wife-beating b******D’ and ‘Ally s*****d your wife’ but I honestly didn’t hear any racist or sectarian abuse directed toward him specifically. Tbh, I got bored listening to it all anyway.

Thanks for the suggestion, but my follow up has already been sent.

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easyJamboPosted on3:43 pm - Feb 25, 2015


Celtic statement re today’s fine.

Does it go far enough given previous UEFA sanctions against the club?

http://www.celticfc.net/news/7731

CELTIC have been fined 10,000 euros by UEFA following the Europa League away tie against Dinamo Zagreb in December.

UEFA’s Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Body announced the fine today.

A club spokesperson said: “Clearly everyone is extremely disappointed that the behaviour of only a handful of people and in particular the use of flares, have led to a further fine from UEFA.

“We have repeatedly called for the use of flares to stop. We cannot and will not allow the safety of our supporters or the reputation of our great club to be compromised by the actions of a tiny minority.

“It is time those responsible understand the damage this does to the club they claim to support.”

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scapaflowPosted on3:47 pm - Feb 25, 2015


Apropos Phil’s latest piece, the scandal behind this story

http://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/news/u/glasgow-lawyer-suspended-as-sheriff-after-link-to-fraud-probe.1424873768

http://www.wsj.com/articles/donor-to-conservatives-linked-to-police-investigation-of-heather-capital-1421047053

is one to keep an eye on. The Scottish establishment is going to need a much bigger carpet :mrgreen:

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mcfcPosted on3:47 pm - Feb 25, 2015


The Cat NR1 says:
February 25, 2015 at 3:34 pm

Off-topic, EPL football now displays many economic characteristics of a luxury good market.

=======================================================================
absolutely – it’s the capitalist way 🙂 even with ST prices around £1000 there is a large percentage of STs and a waiting list at the big clubs. I think this is inevitable without a strong community ethic such as the Bedesliga which seems to regard football as a place for local people to come together and suppoort their local team. In contract, the EPL is becoming the English host for a psuedo-global league sponsored by global brands for global audiences.

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The Rangers nil? Who missed the penalty?Posted on3:58 pm - Feb 25, 2015


nawlite says:
February 25, 2015 at 3:38 pm

The reason I’m certain of the specific content I cited was because I wasn’t aware of the Collymore issue, and was therefore puzzled as to why Christian Nade was getting such treatment from the away fans. Since I was only dipping in and out of the broadcast to check the score I assumed he had offended them in some way while I was watching Coronation Street. I must admit to being puzzled, also, about how they knew he was a member of an organisation dedicated to the establishment of an independent Irish Republic in the 19th and early 20th century. I didn’t.

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ecobhoyPosted on4:01 pm - Feb 25, 2015


scapaflow says:
February 25, 2015 at 3:47 pm

Apropos Phil’s latest piece, the scandal behind this story

http://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/news/u/glasgow-lawyer-suspended-as-sheriff-after-link-to-fraud-probe.1424873768
——————————————————-
The situation has been a major talking point in Scottish legal circles for quite some time. As I pointed out on 7 February (see undernoted post) the SMSM were well aware of the various connections and made no comment and, as usual, avoided asking any questions.

ecobhoy says:
February 7, 2015 at 10:33 am

The Gregory King hedge fund – which appeared to have disappeared along with the founder and $600 million – has very close connections to Glasgow and allegedly some of its better-known legal fraternity.

There have been many pointers on the internet for months allegedly tying in a prominent player in the Rangers pantomime however I have no doubt all will become known before too long.

The SMSM are well aware of the connection and have chosen, as usual, not to investigate or ask any questions.

Bits of background to the story about Glaswegian King can be found at:

http://like-profit.com/scottish-hedge-fund-cheated-investors-600-million/

PS: Afaik there is no connection with his namesake DK other than sharing the same surname.

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wottpiPosted on4:02 pm - Feb 25, 2015


easyJambo says:
February 25, 2015 at 3:43 pm

Perhaps not far enough because if it was possible to identify the fans or general area of ticket sales then, lets say, a 20 x 20 block of fans should have been identified and not given access to any matches home and away until the culprits were identified.

A statement to that effect in the same way Celtic have tried to deal with problem groups before is the way forward.

Behave your self or wholly miss out on the thing you profess to love.

There is a good chance that many of these dafties are not actually interested in the football side of things anyway and would end up causing a rumpus elsewhere.

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scapaflowPosted on4:37 pm - Feb 25, 2015


ecobhoy says:
February 25, 2015 at 4:01 pm

I had forgotten your earlier post. I rather think that over the coming months, a number of familiar names will be in the spotlight. 😉

“‘Mon the Ernst & Young” is a chant I never thought I’d cry! :mrgreen:

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Danish PastryPosted on4:40 pm - Feb 25, 2015


Jim Spence being accused of spending too much time in the pub after this tweet 😀

planned meeting of SPFL board in March will surely finally sound the death knell for the bigots at football. Points deductions etc.
4:51pm – 25 Feb 15

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StevieBCPosted on4:49 pm - Feb 25, 2015


Rather than repeat some of the above content, what caught my attention this morning was FIFA’s apparently belligerent refusal to offer compensation to the c.50 leagues affected by the proposed change of dates of the Qatar WC.

FIFA has enough problems to deal with, and making even more enemies is not a great strategy.

There have been some rumblings about starting a new FIFA, and you would think that Blatter would not want to noise up the English, Spanish and Italian leagues in particular.

FIFA was initially also adamant that the WC would be played in the summer in Qatar.
But even moving the WC back to Nov/Dec, the average high temperatures in Qatar range from 76F to 85F.

So, here’s my prediction.

FIFA have to offer some more incentive / cash to the national associations.

As observed at the Brazil WC, there were ‘water breaks’ allowed in each half – at the discretion of the ref, IIRC.

In the US, they managed to squeeze in TV commercial breaks during these stops in play.

So, what if ‘water breaks’ become more acceptable, and become de facto, additional commercial breaks for those TV companies that have paid the big bucks for the WC TV rights ?

FIFA might be able to negotiate additional fees – which could be used to pay off the national associations.

And eventually, the 90 minutes game will have 3 official breaks at league level too – to satisfy TV purposes.

It could be spun that, [for H&S reasons ?!], it is healthier for footballers to take additional breaks and receive additional fluids/massage to help avoid cramp, injuries etc…

I’m just surprised it hasn’t happened already – especially with the crazy amounts paid by Sky who already dictate the day & time of their chosen matches in the EPL/SPL.

And the fans won’t be considered of course… 🙁

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Gym TrainerPosted on4:52 pm - Feb 25, 2015


During the preparations for the World Cup in the USA in 1994, the US FA (or whatever they call themselves) wanted to switch to 4 quarters of 22½ minutes for televisual purposes – in that case FIFA told them to Foxtrot Oscar…

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MaBawPosted on5:00 pm - Feb 25, 2015


I am not a fan of the world cup taking place through December to Christmas eve, this is a family time and a time to enjoy festivities. I don’t want to be watching multiple games a day and a tournament running until Christmas eve.

How will fans and footballers get home for Christmas. This is a pathetic decision. Qatar should never have been chosen.

Look out for the football winter jackets on sale.

I will probably be drawn to games much to the annoyance of others, but hopefully I will forget about it and enjoy the family time that Christmas is all about.

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The Cat NR1Posted on5:06 pm - Feb 25, 2015


Tartanwulver says:
February 25, 2015 at 11:23 am

STV framing the Doncaster ‘masterclass’ in an appropriately tongue in cheek fashion

http://sport.stv.tv/football/clubs/rangers/311631-football-talk-rangers-in-for-dougie-freedman-messi-proves-to-be-human/

It’s not alcohol they need to start serving at football grounds, it’s hallucinogenic drugs. That way we can maybe all have a chance of seeing football in the same way that Doncaster, Regan, SMSM, et al appear to be seeing it
=======================================
I had been toying with the idea of a drugs related post for a week or so, so seeing as you’ve got in there first…

I posted a while back about the RIFC PLC EGM ending up like a rave back in the day, with the attendees circling the M25 waiting for the call to tell them of the venue.

On a rave related theme, why not ensure that all TRFC fans attending any TRFC related function, be it a match, an AGM/EGM or whatever else they do together, are given an appropriate advance dosage of E. 😛

The sight and sound of a totally loved up sloth of bears would make a pleasant change for all and sundry. They may even get used to being in a state other than permarage. Friday night would be a good time to start.

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StevieBCPosted on5:07 pm - Feb 25, 2015


“SFA’s compliance officer appeals Rangers’ Simonsen’s “unduly lenient” ban for betting
======================================================================================

The Scottish FA’s compliance officer has appealed against the ban imposed on Rangers’ Steve Simonsen for betting.

Simonsen was banned for two games, one of which was suspended, after admitting betting on 55 matches.

The SFA has now confirmed that its compliance officer has appealed the ban on the basis that it is “unduly lenient”…”

http://www.heraldscotland.com/sport/football/sfas-compliance-officer-appeals-rangers-simonsens-unduly-lenient-ban-for-betting.1424883390

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

😯

So did Black receive ‘preferential treatment’ ?
Or is Simonsen being ‘victimised’ ?

Rather inconsistent and confusing.

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