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. ”


“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.


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?


4,992 thoughts on “Spot the difference?

  1. Extract from Mr William McMurdo’s blog.

    Signs And Portents

    February 26, 2015

    “There may also be a swing in terms of media support. Whilst supporting King against a billionaire who had the potential to make RFC bigger than ever was a no-brainer for an anti-Rangers press, there may be a reverting to type once King and his cohorts are inside. Facing a hostile press is something the reqs have yet to experience and this will be exacerbated by the present mood of the Rangers support who feel very much victimised by the media as it is.

    In short, Rangers fans will want to see a robust response from the club to such victimisation. Will they get it when the old guard dust down the blazers and take their seats? The association of that old guard with the notorious dignified silence approach of the past seems to indicate it is unlikely”

    Re the last paragraph, words fail me. 🙄

  2. 12 minutes of added time at Hartlepool today. Made poor Jeff Stelling wait and wait. Agree completely about not enough added time, been saying this for years. Once saw a ref play 5 fewer minutes than there should have been due to two long injury stoppages. It was 5 added last night btw, not 6.

  3. In what I saw as a shameful act of “what’s outsert” Nil By Mouth almost immediately designated “h*n” as a sectarian term. Those of a blue hue have been banging on trying to use that as leverage to get a most substantial body to recognise it ever since. It IS used to refer to Rangers but is entirely non-sectarian, even if you take it as referring to Gemany you can’t claim sectarian bias to a country that gave “us” Martin Luther and the last Pope!

    I personally use different terms for rangers fans depending on how I see their levels on reasonableness. Bluenose versus h*n.

    As for the entirely spurious argument that celtic fans sing “Paddy McCourts Fenian Army” so it can’t be sectarian, the offence is not the word itself, but how it is used. “I am black/Irish and I am proud” is a world away from “go home you black/Irish….”.

    As for Celtic fans/Irish being called H*ns, I imagine that refers to Ireland’s “neutrality” in the WW2; if you’re not with us etc…

  4. theredpill says:

    February 28, 2015 at 9:40 am

    ianagain says:
    Just as a matter of interest do you know how many are on the board and how mauch are they payed if anything ?

    I believe 8. interestingly 1 is Tam Cowans wife.

    Probably only 2 get paid apart from exes. Being Alan Burrows and 1 other. Cant mind who probably the Sect.

  5. Very good article/report in today’s Herald by Gary Keown especially the last paragraph.

    “On a depressing evening, it was the singing of those fans that came under scrutiny. There was some stuff about Northern Ireland and The Troubles early on and at one point, according to who you listen to, Celtic were either branded “fenian b******s” or “cheating b******s”. Who can be sure?”

  6. Sometimes you see a case that just intrigues.

    Off topic but Watson get my violin.

    Whats this aboot?

    Chancery Division – Masters

    27-02-2015 02:02 PM GMT

    Daily list for Monday, 2 March 2015

    Updated Friday, 27 February 2015 14.02



    Monday 2 March 2015

    At 10:30

    Sherlock Holmes International Society Ltd v Aidiniatz and others

  7. @ianagain, that got my interest. Quite a few articles about the dispute. Family feud by the sound of it, about the recent (and incredible) £2m income from the SH museum.

    There’s money in fictional entities.

  8. I just can`t see TRFC in the SP next season
    Hearts are odds on to win the Championship
    TRFC at best will finish second
    Achieving promotion from second place requires beating two other teams on aggregate over 4 games in the latter part of May
    Hibs will most likely be one of the teams they have to beat. …and Hibs have beaten TRFC twice already This could be four beatings before the fixture list is complete
    But the really significant issue is this
    Two thirds of the players currently in the first team will be out of contract at the end of the season. This will happen following the playoffs when the transfer window opens on 15 July.
    Some of these players have contracts that guarantee them a pay rise in the event of promotion…providing of course their contracts are extended beyond July 2015
    This means any out of contract players involved in playoff games will have enormous leverage in securing a new contract
    Why should they risk serious injury in the playoffs when they will be seeking another club?
    AH ha you might say
    …what about the 5 NUFC loan players? Surely they would be just as good as any out of contract players that they replace
    Well I wouldn`t put any money on that idea
    These guys are only at TRFC in order to dump costs from NUFC onto TRFC
    They won`t be under any illusions that TRFC are likely to give them a better long term contract than they have at present with NUFC. They will be well aware of the gloom engulfing MP and Ibrox
    They will have concluded it’s in their own interest to ensure they don`t stay at TRFC any longer than they have to
    And by the end of next week they will have also concluded that their interests might suit Mr Ashley down to the ground
    We shall see
    I still expect Ashley to pull the plug next week and prepare the way for his surrogate Ashley (Sarver) to buy the assets
    If he doesn`t he has been outsmarted by someone so far down the Spiv food chain that he will have serious egg on his face in the City
    But if he lets King gain control and start messing him about in a PR sense
    I would expect his 5 loan players to have “difficulty” recovering from their “long term injuries”

  9. Big Pink says:
    February 28, 2015 at 5:09 pm

    …I think promotion at all costs is the order of the day, giving them access to more prize money, TV money and gates…


    Would they really get much more TV money?
    They’re on telly pretty much every week as it is.

  10. Not only did Hearts score 10 goals in the game yesterday, they actually scored 10 goals in 46mins

  11. DP@9.59pm 28th Feb
    ” There’s money in fictional entities’
    And CG and his successors will testify to that!
    (a nice one, DP!)

  12. Je suis Charlie…?

    Are these issues not pertinent to Scottish football?

    Rangers have been previously sanctioned by UEFA for their fans’ sectarian signing.

    Celtic have been previously sanctioned by UEFA for their fans displaying banners with a political message.

    Why is this interesting subject taboo?

    Are UEFA right to differentiate between sectarian singing and “political” banners?

    I’m a Rudolph Giuliani zero-tolerance type with regard to fan behaviour at football.

    If we can’t discuss such subjects with civility on this site then I really do despair.

  13. IIRC, a well worn marketing ploy is to rebrand a product e.g. ‘New Improved Daz’ – even though the contents may not have changed at all. But the consumer is deceived and sales get a boost.

    With the pitiful SFA, you would think that they could at least make a half @rsed attempt at some sort of ‘rebranding’, whilst trying to maintain the status quo.

    But no, the SFA either can’t be bothered, or is so arrogant, or out of touch with the consumers/fans that they are oblivious to how their organisation is perceived by the general public.

    Who would be proud to say they worked for the SFA today?

    And that’s probably very unfair on the many employees who do a good job at grass roots level, for example.

  14. RayCharlez says:
    March 1, 2015 at 4:00 am
    Je suis Charlie…?

    Are these issues not pertinent to Scottish football?

    Rangers have been previously sanctioned by UEFA for their fans’ sectarian signing.

    Obviously a typo saying ‘signing’ instead of ‘singing’. However they were never sanctioned by a single body for their sectarian signing policy. Of course, it is good they chose to ditch it, but the fact it existed so long with the complete blessing of the authorities will forever stick in my craw.

  15. Quiet the day.
    We often accuse the SFA of doing nothing. Clearly they have been so wrapped up in preparing the details of this proposal to concern themselves with minor stuff like sectarian/racist chanting. I found this in a report on the scotsman about the IFAB:
    Rolling substitutions, a proposal by the Scottish FA and described by IFAB as a “ground-breaking decision”, will now be allowed in amateur games at grass-roots level, meaning any number of replacements can be rotated in order to drive up participation.
    Following two separate pilot schemes by the English and Scottish FAs, the idea will be adopted globally. “This is a significant change to how recreational football has been played,” said Irish FA chief executive Patrick Nelson.
    Scunnered to note that the meeting was in Belfast. What, couldn’t find a more suitable venue in the Caribbean or the Middle East, Campbell?


    From the Scotsman, the headline sums it up- “Dave King set to ‘do a Fergus McCann’ at Rangers”

    We’ll see next week what Uncle Mike has to say about that for starters. But let’s ignore that, and pass quickly to the most important question of all- where’s the money coming from? Oh dear, my copy of the article must have a bit missing, because in the version I’m reading, not only is the number one most obvious and important question not answered, it’s not even asked.

    Of course the bears themselves should be asking the same question, before arranging Friday’s Ibrox coronation ceremony. I understand that the fans are desperate, but they really don’t have to let desperation make them blind and stupid as well. They should at least be asking for a plan.

    The King plan might be to to milk the fans dry, not just this year, but for many years to come. That would explain his silence. The problem is that it won’t be nearly enough. The City won’t touch this train wreck with King at the controls, so all new shares issued will have to be bought by the fans. The fans won’t raise much more than £5 million, unless there has been a dramatic shift since Green’s IPO. So is the King plan an annual share issue? He’s not coming up with anything else.

  17. upthehoops says:
    March 1, 2015 at 8:51 am

    RayCharlez says:
    March 1, 2015 at 4:00 am
    Je suis Charlie…?

    Rangers have been previously sanctioned by UEFA for their fans’ sectarian signing.
    “never sanctioned by a single body for their sectarian signing policy”


    Back in the 1960-70 era Strathclyde University Union refused to allow a Rangers Supporters Club for that very reason.

  18. neepheid says:
    March 1, 2015 at 9:56 am


    While King and the three bears may regenerate the support, the rest of the bears are now very very wary about parting with their hard earned cash.

    Let us remember that in the club’s hour of need not all the shares made available for fans were taken up at the IPO. Therefore despite the 500m worldwide fans the numbers willing to invest anything more than their season ticket money is limited.

    Now every little helps but even doubling the level of fan investment in the IPO from £5m to £10m for any future share issue just deals with one year’s £8m cash burn plus the gardeners wages. Alternatively that pays off Ashley’s loans.

    I find it unlikely that having been burned already that the city investors will support a new share issue.

    As I and many have discussed, little or no income stream from merchandising stadium advertising etc etc.

    That leaves ‘fan investment’, the season ticket cash, pay as you goes, TV money, non-SD associated sponsorships and the deep pockets of King and the three bears.

    That can all add up to a pretty sum but not enough to bring immediate success given that as someone pointed out on the Bears Den the state of the current squad and coaching structure can be represented by the following:-

    Goals scored by Rangers in seven games in 2015 – 8,
    Goals scored by Hearts yesterday – 10.

    I note the Scotsman article mentioning Paul Murray saying five years to right the ship.

    While many don’t have time for Paul Murray I think the bears should pay attention to what he is saying as he at least seems to be a realist and acknowledges the job ahead is far from easy.

  19. Looking forward to watching today’s game.

    I have enjoyed watching a number of Celtic games this season but haven’t seen much of the Dons.

    Hoping for a high quality game worthy of a top of the table clash and hope that Aberdeen can take something from the game to keep the title race going for as long as possible (I know many on TSFM will have an alternate viewpoint!)

    Scottish football needs a competitive Premiership (and we’re getting one).

  20. At last, a Scottish based journalist advocating expulsion for those cheats…the Rrrrr…

    No, not the Rangers, the Russians. Seems Tom English doesn’t like doping to improve the chances of winning trophies. Seems he doesn’t like presidents of governing bodies advocating help to cheats to mend their ways and recover. Seems he’d advocate sending a whole nation’s sporting bodies into the wilderness of expulsion. Seems he’s prepared to say a lot about cheats – when they do their cheating thousands of miles away. Seems he’s prepared to accept that the Russians cheated based solely on what two people claim because, well it does make sense to believe them (I do too) and Russians are bad guys anyway!

    The thing is, Tom English isn’t going to make one iota of difference in this case, no matter how hard hitting his words might be. On the other hand, there was a case of cheating, with the governing body pussy-footing around ensuring the ‘penalty’ was as lenient as it could possibly be, followed by even greater facilitating for the ‘recovery’ of the cheating body than Seb Coe might be advocating, and here Tom English, along with the rest of his profession, could have written similarly hard hitting words that would, almost certainly, have made a difference.

    They chose to side with the weak pussy-footers. They chose to be a part of the problem. They all poo-pooed integrity, yet English espouses this – now, ‘…integrity and trust in what the public are watching.’

    They are all Seb Coes!

    They are all what they, themselves, condemn!

  21. cowanpete says:
    March 1, 2015 at 8:51 am

    Quiet the day.
    We often accuse the SFA of doing nothing. Clearly they have been so wrapped up in preparing the details of this proposal to concern themselves with minor stuff like sectarian/racist chanting. I found this in a report on the scotsman about the IFAB:
    Rolling substitutions, a proposal by the Scottish FA and described by IFAB as a “ground-breaking decision”, will now be allowed in amateur games at grass-roots level, meaning any number of replacements can be rotated in order to drive up participation.
    Following two separate pilot schemes by the English and Scottish FAs, the idea will be adopted globally. “This is a significant change to how recreational football has been played,” said Irish FA chief executive Patrick Nelson.
    Scunnered to note that the meeting was in Belfast. What, couldn’t find a more suitable venue in the Caribbean or the Middle East, Campbell?
    Rolling subs have been used in local games in the Norfolk County FA area for a while. It started over two years ago, as a FIFA backed trial so it looks like being expanded to another national FA’s territory.

  22. James,
    I am as happy to have a go at the press as anyone, but to imply that Andrew H is harbouring a foaming at the mouth desire to see his own club (Rangers) back on top is as wide of the mark as the Bears Den accusations that Chic Young is a Rangers hater.

    Smith’s article is I agree crazy, but he’s no more a Rangers fan than you are.

  23. Apologies for being late to the party re the H”n word & the use of Bears to describe Rangers’ fans.

    It’s my recollection that H”n was used in my childhood as slang for any enemy.

    As to the Bears (Three or otherwise), that’s simply rhyming slang: Ra Gers = Teddy Berrrz = Bears. For some reason, I’ve a memory (probably false) of Lex McLean using the expression frequently.

  24. Very quiet on here tonight. Did I miss something today?

  25. Either way, King and his cohorts must now address in detail how to meet the club’s financial requirements for the next two years, which are likely to approach £30 million, even if Rangers achieve promotion to the Scottish Premiership.
    why did you not ask him roddy at the press conference :slamb:

  26. Thanks guys, to everyone who’s commented on Andrew Smith not being a Sevconian. I have amended the piece and put my reasons in bold at the bottom of the article … I am grateful to everyone who takes the time to point out when I’ve got stuff wrong and I am always happy to correct articles that do that.

  27. jean7brodie says:
    March 1, 2015 at 7:04 pm

    Very quiet on here tonight. Did I miss something today?

    I think there was a match on in Glasgow 🙂

    James Richarson with a few interesting comments on Parma:

    Trying to raise €5-10m to see out season via other clubs chipping in €250,000 each. A non-starter, apparently.

    Possibility of an advance on the parachute payments, but they’ve already dipped into those. What a mess. Think I heard that about €100m of TV money gone over the past few years but nobody seems to know where. Hoping for a third owner this season.

    Incredible what football clubs get away with in some countries :irony:

  28. Just home after today’s game.
    Disappointing result but at least the league lasted until March unlike the worlds greatest league(Scottish Championship) which was over by Xmas 😆

  29. neepheid says:
    March 1, 2015 at 8:10 pm

    I don’t particularly wish to promote the Daily Record by giving it hits. Anyway, I also don’t have the patience to plough through its advertising curtain to reach the article.

    Could you provide a brief summary of the column?

  30. Bill1903 says:
    March 1, 2015 at 8:08 pm

    Just home after today’s game.
    Disappointing result but at least the league lasted until March unlike the worlds greatest league(Scottish Championship) which was over by Xmas

    Don’t despair Bill1903. Aberdeen were very impressive some might say gallus for a the opening half and were let down by poor finishing when it mattered.
    I was impressed again by the travelling support and the general lack of enmity both outside and inside the ground.Is “sheep” a sectarian term yet? I was
    also struck by how cosmopolitan todays crowd was. The italian,polish,dutch and german language overheard in the superstore and I was stopped by a group
    of nine or ten guys who asked me to take their photo..”..making sure please if ground is too”. I am no David Bailey but I think they were content with the result.
    Initially thought they were german but no they were dutch and some were Feyenoord supporters who were there for the weekend..maybe a stag kinda do, nice guys anyway.
    I commend the match report on Scotzine as being quite perceptive and suggest there is still room for substantial improvement in the rest of the SPFL.
    Jeez sounds so patronising on reading back , still read the article and you will maybe see what I am getting at and as a comforting sop we should all
    acknowledge the only team in Scotland to win two competative European trophies 🙂

  31. Good evening.

    I was at Celtic Park today, as I usually am when Celtic play at home. I sit in the south stand in section ES1 which is close to the area allocated to away supporters. For the best part, I wish to commend the Aberdeen fans for their contribution to the match atmosphere and congratulate their excellent team on making the match an enjoyable contest and despite the final result, there is no denying they were the better side until Celtic scored the first goal against the run of play.

    However, I have a question which hopefully an Aberdeen fan will answer. The chant “Jimmy Saville, he’s one of your own” was clearly heard emanating from the Aberdeen support on at least two occasions. Judging by the volume, it is fair to say that the majority of Aberdeen fans joined in.

    My question to Aberdeen fans is this:

    Please tell me exactly what the chant “Jimmy Saville, he’s one of your own” is supposed to mean and who is it aimed at?

    Thank you.

  32. Billy Boyce says:
    March 1, 2015 at 8:30 pm

    It’s a long article, but here are a couple of extracts that convey the gist of it, I hope.

    MINISTER Stuart MacQuarrie has delivered a sermon against a self-serving Rangers board that amounts to fire and brimstone for Bluenoses everywhere.

    The Church of Scotland clergyman, who has served the Light Blues for almost three decades, refused to hold back in his condemnation of the directors he reckons have sucked the soul from his club.

    In an open letter, published exclusively by Record Sport, MacQuarrie lays bare his anger at the board’s contempt for fans and employees as the club faces one of the most important weeks in their recent history.

    The board may resign before Friday if they know defeat is inevitable and, as far as MacQuarrie is concerned, the sooner they go the better.

    He writes: “It is unusual for someone who is a Church of Scotland minister to enter publicly into the rights and wrongs of a boardroom battle such as that at Rangers.

    “However, I cannot stand idly by as people’s lives and livelihoods are considered mere pawns in a corporate power struggle, discarded as being of no further use.

    “The trust which has been abused will only be restored with the election as directors of people who know, understand and love Rangers – such as Dave King, John Gilligan, Paul Murray and the Three Bears.

    They have character, part of the DNA of being a Ranger.

    “The bleak future offered by the current directors appears to be Mr Somers standing on the steps of Ibrox waving a cheque like Neville Chamberlain guaranteeing debt in our time.

    “From us, the Rangers fans, the clear and strong message to the present directors is from that same period of history.

    “The words of MP Leo Amery addressed to Prime Minister Chamberlain, ‘You have sat too long here for any good you have been doing. Depart, I say, and let us have done with you.

    “‘In the name of God, go.’”

  33. neepheid says:
    March 1, 2015 at 8:10 pm

    The Daily Record really going for it now- I think I am supposed to conclude that Dave King has God on his side. But seriously, just how bad can a newspaper get before it goes out of business?

    Bonkers DR stuff, desperately pandering to its only remaining audience. I’d be a bit worried about that man of the cloth. Where was he when Murray the Profligate was steering the ship?

    It is easier to thread a camel’s needle than to eye the payments for 276 creditors who hath been humped.

  34. Andy 7.12

    All the media have to do is ask what TRFC need to do to obtain a Gold/Silver Level of Financial Licence from the SFA.

    Clubs in the top tier need that standard. Hearts only have Entry level (as do TRFC) so same question applies although they look more certain to be a top tier club than TRFC.

    A licence can be granted with conditions and setting conditions on TRFC getting a licence is the only way SFA can protect Scottish football. A responsibility they have so far shirked.

    I do wish main stream journos would acquaint themselves with licensing requirements.

  35. Re the Jimmy Savile stuff .
    It’s obviously pathetic and no excuse for it.
    I didn’t join in but agree the majority did.
    It easy to say it’s just to ‘wind’ up’ the Celtic fans beside us along with the ‘ what country do you come from’ songs.
    In the main though the songs were just in support of the team.
    I must say I was surprised how quiet the Celtic support were(GB apart)

  36. neepheid says:
    March 1, 2015 at 8:59 pm

    OMG!! Either I’ve lost the plot or he has. A man of the cloth speaking thus? Lauding Dave King?

  37. neepheid says:
    March 1, 2015 at 8:10 pm

    Amery, was, of course quoting Cromwell. However, I think Bruce Ismay is probably a more apt role model for Mr Somers, undeserved place in a Titanic lifeboat, and all that :mrgreen:

  38. StevieBC says:
    March 1, 2015 at 7:08 am

    IIRC, a well worn marketing ploy is to rebrand a product e.g. ‘New Improved Daz’ – even though the contents may not have changed at all.
    Like the 5WA?
    New Miracle Debt-Free Rangers.

    Unfortunately, the contents of the songs remain the the same (sorry Led Zep fans).

  39. neepheid says:
    March 1, 2015 at 8:59 pm

    Thanks for that, neepheid. Can I have some of what Fr MacQuarrie is drinking?

  40. Shurely new improved Sevco 5088 (preserved by coys house).

    I await a courts decision.

    Dave King has no, absolutely no, idea what he is usurping.

  41. Not funny but shows you how TSFM can get to you.

    When the unsavoury chanting was going on I’m shaking my head thinking that when I get home I’m going to have to try and defend this to a 800 word sermon from flipping ecoboy! 😳

  42. jean7brodie says:
    March 1, 2015 at 9:10 pm

    Indeed and I thought it was Catholics who had the monoploy on forgiving past sins though confession 🙂

    No mention of the wholly unchristian attitude King has to paying his taxes that can be used for the common good or wading into all those good fans who are happy to be up to their knees etc etc.

    Yet another reason, regardless of what club we are talking about religion and football just don’t mix.

    The only place religion has in football is the old joke.

    ‘Jesus saves – but Dalglish nets the rebound’

    Frankly it is this type of hypocrisy and blatant tribalism that made sure I gave up on religion as soon as was old enough to realise what a crock of sh!t it all was.

  43. Sky now announcing that Somers is resigning. He is obviously heeding Cromwell’s words after all.

  44. Apologies – OT Alert
    Been asked by a friend who is keen to reunite with some old workmates to put out a plea for anyone who knows anyone who worked at the DHSS office in Stepps Road in Glasgow (Provan ILO) to contact a new Facebook group at

    I believe the “Bears” in the title is a secular term 🙂

  45. Althetim 8.54pm

    i was at the scotland england game at celtic park last november and the saville chant was loudly sung by a good number of scottish fans at the english fans. i believe it was reported in the english press at the time.

    Not a nice chant by any means but i dont think it can be attributed just to Dons fans ☺

  46. wottpi says:
    March 1, 2015 at 9:29 pm


    Agree with your other points but the joke is older than you make out: It was Jesus saves … but St. John nets the rebound. (This being an earlier Liverpool team).

  47. Billy Boyce says:
    March 1, 2015 at 9:23 pm
    neepheid says:
    March 1, 2015 at 8:59 pm

    Thanks for that, neepheid. Can I have some of what Fr MacQuarrie is drinking?

    Next week’s sermon may well be: “Rendering unto Sevco that which is Caesar’s”.

  48. Evening, I’ve been watching all the supposition and comment on the chanting over the last few weeks and finally have something to add.

    I’ll get the contentious part over first.

    I was winding my Aberdeen supporting mate up today after Hearts won 10-0 and Celtic stuffed Aberdeen. I commented on the Jimmy Saville chants etc and his response was to mention the abuse directed at Logan through the game.

    I know there is always going to the by ” Yo’ mama is…” stuff between the supporters, but we should all be better than chanting about The Famine song, Republican songs (excluding national anthems), child abuse and so on.

    This site is for change in Scottish Football and maybe it is time to look wider than just governance to include influencing the attitudes of fans.

    Contentious part over, now for my own whataboutery.

    With twitter reporting Sommers is stepping down, maybe the end game is for Green’s remaining cronies to bail out giving support to King’s EGM resolution.

    I just think it is bizarre that Mather and other backers of Green are backing the EGM when their contracts seem to depend on the status quo.

    I do wonder if King and T3B’s have been excellently herded into what can only be described as an excellent trap.

    The next week will tell I suppose.

  49. Mister jet in would be well advised to jet out, this is going all judicial sooner rather than later.
    Who knows now who owns what?
    I think even Ashleys been duped.

  50. ach well, at least the words “swoop” and “ace” can now get printed again.
    missed those.

  51. coineanachantaighe says:
    March 1, 2015 at 9:43 pm

    Giving our respective age ranges away!!

    Anyway just looked up wiki to see if it said what Ian St John was up to these days and note that give Zeefuik’s hatrick yesterday that the Saint scored one in 2mins 30secs against Hibs in 1959.

    I also believe he scored a hat-trick on his Merseyside derby debut. A right good player.

  52. The clumpany was bought via (an alleged) fraud.

    How does that leave any potential buyer?

  53. andygraham.66 says:
    March 1, 2015 at 10:30 pm

    James Forrest

    You put up a piece “in defence of the greatest fans in the world”

    Can you direct me to this piece on the TSFM site please as I cant find it unless it has been deleted by mods.If it is on the posters own website however then I recommend you post accordingly.

  54. Call Me Nae Idea says:
    March 1, 2015 at 10:04 pm

    The long term solution to the community singing, (and much else) does lie with the fans. Unfortunately, the Ultras on all sides are not yet ready to listen to reason, preferring to hide behind sophistry and whataboutery.

    Which means in the short to medium term, we must rely upon the authorities to act, fines will not be enough, the Ultras clearly believe its just a cost of doing business for the clubs, it will take lengthy (lifetime?) bans for individuals, and points deductions to force the clubs to get tough.

    I won’t be holding my breath.

  55. andygraham.66 says:
    March 1, 2015 at 10:30 pm

    Yeah, I didn’t post that one on here, it didn’t belong on here 🙂

    That’s a personal piece to my own guys in the aftermath of the UEFA fines nonsense. But for the record … we are 😉


  56. Call Me Nae Idea says:
    March 1, 2015 at 10:04 pm

    Ha, you’ve an alias I can relate to 🙂

    I guess we’ll know at statement o’clock tomorrow if Somers is offski.

    They’ve been very quiet on the conditions on the second £5m.

    Perhaps Mather & Brother Magath are hoping for a share price boost? But all in all, you can’t help thinking that the requisitioners, who don’t look unlike a concert party, may be buying into the ultimate pig in a poke, which may turn into a banana skin, once the cat’s oot the bag when the bonnet’s lifted.

  57. Danish Pastry says:

    March 1, 2015 at 11:33 pm

    “may be buying into the ultimate pig in a poke, which may turn into a banana skin, once the cat’s oot the bag when the bonnet’s lifted.”

    Wow, a hat trick + of idioms in one sentence at 11:33pm I am impressed. 😀

  58. Next week at the big Hoose
    Somers resigns AM Easedale resigns PM
    SFA demand Ashley appears in person.His lawyers agree to ask him
    Ashley`s Loans recalled
    LLambias calls in Ashley friendly Prepack Liquidator
    Liquidator arrives.LLambias and Leech hand over keys and resign
    Liquidator cancels Fridays EGM and demands payment of Ashley loans before EGM can be reinstated
    Ashley (Sarver) calls Press conference in Phoenix to announce interest in buying assets
    SFA forgive TRfC for sectarian singing at Raith match

  59. GoosyGoosy says:
    March 2, 2015 at 12:15 am

    Its more likely that Mr King & Co are about to rediscover the truth in the old saw, that:

    “Responsibility without power is the prerogative of the shat upon down through the ages.”

    In Mr King’s case, it will be thoroughly deserved :mrgreen:

  60. On 23rd July 2012 David C King was removed from the board of The Rangers Football Club plc by the company’s administrators Duff & Phelps following the rejection of a CVA by the company’s creditors. Just over fourteen weeks later, on 31st October 2012, the company formally entered compulsory liquidation.

    In general terms, it is a criminal offence under s.216 of The Insolvency Act for for a director of a liquidated company to be on the board or to be involved in the management of any new company with a similar name – without the permission of the court. This applies to any director on the board in the twelve months prior to liquidation and applies for a period of five years.

    There appears, on the face of it, to be no reason why Mr King would not be caught by this particular prohibition in relation to RIFC plc – the holding company of The Rangers Football Club Ltd – up to 31st October 2017.

    So, assuming the court’s permission has not been granted, Dave certainly risks a fine, imprisonment or both should he take a seat on the board of RIFC or act as a shadow director before the 5 year ban has expired. He would also, under s.217 of the act, become personally liable for company debts incurred during his involvement with the new company. Not only that, anyone else acting on his instructions with regard to company business, would incur the same personal liability.

    This has nothing to do with the approval of the company’s Nomad or AIM or even the SFA. This is a matter that he can only resolve by gaining approval from the court. Approval can not be applied retrospectively, so debts incurred before permission is granted (should it ever be) would still attract a personal liability.

    I find it absolutely incredible that Mr King would even consider taking on the personal liability of a business losing perhaps £10m per year and risk further criminal convictions by doing so.

    I feel that there has to be something obvious that I am missing; but I have no idea what it is.

    Truly puzzled. 😕

    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.

    (4)If a person acts in contravention of this section, he is liable to imprisonment or a fine, or both.

    (5)In subsection (3) “the court” means any court having jurisdiction to wind up companies; and on an application for leave under that subsection, the Secretary of State or the official receiver may appear and call the attention of the court to any matters which seem to him to be relevant.

    (6)References in this section, in relation to any time, to a name by which a company is known are to the name of the company at that time or to any name under which the company carries on business at that time.

    (7)For the purposes of this section a company goes into insolvent liquidation if it goes into liquidation at at time when its assets are insufficient for the payment of its debts and other liabilities and the expenses of the winding up.
    (8)In this section “company” includes a company which may be wound up under Part V of this Act.

    217 Personal liability for debts, following contravention of s. 216.

    (1)A person is personally responsible for all the relevant debts of a company if at any time—
    (a)in contravention of section 216, he is involved in the management of the company, or
    (b)as a person who is involved in the management of the company, he acts or is willing to act on instructions given (without the leave of the court) by a person whom he knows at that time to be in contravention in relation to the company of section 216.

    (2)Where a person is personally responsible under this section for the relevant debts of a company, he is jointly and severally liable in respect of those debts with the company and any other person who, whether under this section or otherwise, is so liable.

    (3)For the purposes of this section the relevant debts of a company are—
    (a)in relation to a person who is personally responsible under paragraph (a) of subsection (1), such debts and other liabilities of the company as are incurred at a time when that person was involved in the management of the company, and
    (b)in relation to a person who is personally responsible under paragraph (b) of that subsection, such debts and other liabilities of the company as are incurred at a time when that person was acting or was willing to act on instructions given as mentioned in that paragraph.

    (4)For the purposes of this section, a person is involved in the management of a company if he is a director of the company or if he is concerned, whether directly or indirectly, or takes part, in the management of the company.

    (5)For the purposes of this section a person who, as a person involved in the management of a company, has at any time acted on instructions given (without the leave of the court) by a person whom he knew at that time to be in contravention in relation to the company of section 216 is presumed, unless the contrary is shown, to have been willing at any time thereafter to act on any instructions given by that person.

    (6)In this section “company” includes a company which may be wound up under Part V.

  61. @HP

    If the requisitioners’ are voted on to TRIFC board at the EGM would a formal offer have to be maid of said positions?

    So if DK hold a formal offer he may then seek to have it legally okayed in the courts.

    is this a realistic scenario?

  62. martin c says:
    March 2, 2015 at 1:43 am

    If the requisitioners’ are voted on to TRIFC board at the EGM would a formal offer have to be maid of said positions?

    So if DK hold a formal offer he may then seek to have it legally okayed in the courts.

    is this a realistic scenario?
    The honest answer is: I don’t know.

    There is nothing, that am aware of, that would prevent the others from taking their seats on the board; but I have no idea how or even if, Dave plans to address his 5 year ban.

    It is likely that court proceedings would take some time as the liquidator would be invited to present any relevant facts.

    If, as expected, the MASH appointees are removed, I would think things would be moving too fast to seek court approval for Mr King’s appointment before he becomes actively involved.

    He really needs to have set this in motion already. Perhaps he has, I just don’t know.

  63. Allyjambo says:
    March 1, 2015 at 12:05 pm

    I used to have high hopes for Tom English as a hard hitting writer but in my view he has just turned into another establishment lackey. Cheating and corruption is for Johnny Foreigner but don’t suggest it could ever happen here. What is it that makes us Scots so special that no-one involved in the administration of our football is capable of corruption? The media are happy to report on corruption within any other walk of Scottish life, but somehow everyone becomes a saint whenever they take an official post within the running of Scottish football. Not everyone is/was corrupt of course but the hard line media stance of it actually being impossible tells me they know it is very possible. Why don’t they want to talk about it being possible? My view is because they would then have to discuss who may have benefited from it, and they simply don’t want to go there. I just wish though they would stop insulting our intelligence.

  64. The month of May will certainly be pivotal for the new club,with the play off’s not concluding until the 25th day of May,do I know that date from the past,players out of contract,end of season bonuses due,no money in the biscuit tin,wages borrowed for March,April & May,possible rush through of new share issue,they certainly don’t have their problems too seek,looks like a summer of discontent.

  65. So, Somers has gone. What an interesting week we are all going to have.

    What will happen now? Damned if I know. I’m not even convinced that all the players involved know what they are going to do this week.

  66. Somers quits …….. AND?????? All part of the master plan me thinks 😉 to hear the smsm you’d think the EGM wasn’t even required any longer!!!!!! Will it go ahead? 😉

  67. Adeste Fideles says:
    March 2, 2015 at 7:29 am

    So, Somers has gone. What an interesting week we are all going to have.

    The media have already started their triumphalism but they would do well to ask the pertinent questions, such as:

    1. Is there a binding agreement on Ashley’s secured loan which allows Sports Direct to appoint two directors?

    2. What will King do if Ashley demands his £10M back right away or the keys to Murray Park?

    3. Given that no bank is likely to lend them money, where is the £25M King says is needed going to come from?

    4. Will King, Park etc be willing to lend the club millions with no security?

    5. Isn’t 75% of shareholder approval needed for a rights issue? If so, Ashley camp can block.

    6. Can King and Murray just assume directorships or are they breaking the law without Nomad approval?

    7. Can King afford a lengthy legal fight with Ashley? Ashley can certainly afford one with King!

Comments are closed.