The Existence of Laws


The Existence of Laws

A Blog by James Forrest for TSFM

I am a socialist, and as a socialist I believe in the fundamental goodness of people. Some people find that hard to believe when they read the stuff I write.

I published my first novel recently, on politics and the corrupting nature of it, and it is a deeply cynical book, a book where no-one has clean hands come the end. What has surprised some of those who’ve read it is that I didn’t focus on the lies and smears of the right, but the hypocrisy and deceit of those who claim to be of the left.

Corruption, you see, doesn’t respect political boundaries or points of view. It’s like rainwater. It finds every crack, and gets in there.

My political beliefs revolve around two apparently paradoxical elements; the belief in the inherent decency of people and the need for a strong, and powerful, state. I believe the second underpins the first, and this brings me into conflict with a lot of people, some on the left and some on the right. Too many people see the state as inherently evil, as something that interferes too much in the lives of ordinary people. As something suffocating.

Yet the state exists to protect us. It exists to provide a safety net. It exists to regulate and to oversee. If the state is made up of bad people, if the gears of society are captured by those with malicious or selfish intent, the results are obvious; war, corruption, chaos.

The vast majority of our problems in the modern age can be neatly summed up in two lines from Yeats’ poem “The Second Coming”, which I used to open my novel. “The best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity.”

We live in a time when those who are protecting their own interests have assumed such power that they’ve cowed the rest of us. They have become a law unto themselves. They have changed the nature of the game, because they have sapped our will to the extent some barely put up a fight anymore. The weak get weaker, and the strong use their strength to crush the rest even more. It is a vicious struggle, a downward spiral.

Society is held together not only by the endeavour and common interests of its citizens but by a collection of laws. We elect the people who make those laws. They do so in our name, and we can remove that right every four years. That is a powerful thing, and we do not appreciate it enough. The present corruption exists because we allow it to exist.

The people around me continue to puzzle over my uncommon interest in the affairs of a football club on the west of Glasgow. My own club plays in the east end. I tell those who ask that my primary interest in the goings-on at the club calling itself Rangers is no longer about football; how could it be, after all? With promotion this year they are still a full two divisions below us, emasculated, skint, weak and unstable. If we were fortunate enough to draw them in cup competition the match would be over, as a tie, by the halfway point … in the first half.

In footballing terms they are an utter irrelevance.

Rangers is more than a football club to me. They are a symbol. Their unfolding calamity is an on-going outrage. What is happening there, what is being allowed to happen, is an offense to decency. It is a stain on the face of our country.

In short, it is a scandal. It is a scandal without parallel in sport.

Yet it’s not just a sports story either. If it was, I might not be so focussed on it. What is happening at Rangers is a colossal failure of governance. It is a damning indictment against the very people who are supposed to oversee our game. It is a disgraceful abrogation of responsibility from those at the top, those who claim to be “running things.”

If this is not a failure of governance it is a result of corruption at the heart of our national sport. It says they are bought and paid for, and I will say no such thing here.

So let’s give them the benefit of the doubt. We’ll say instead that what they are is weak, indecisive, inept and disconnected from reality.

It reminds me of our political class, which has become insular and ignorant about what the public wants, and what it needs. It’s not a wonder parties like UKIP can achieve national vote shares of 25% at local elections. Nigel Farage strikes me as a dog-whistle politician, the kind who knows how to appeal to a select group of voters. He is little different to Charles Green, the man who beguiled Rangers fans into handing over large amounts of money, because he was “standing up for the club.” It is easy to do what he did, easy to do what Farage is doing.

Real leadership requires toughness. Say what you like about the Tories, but they have that in spades. Yeats was right about the worst being full of passionate intensity. Green was. Farage is. Cameron and Osborne personify it in their political outlook.

It is easy to be cowed by blunt force politics, and by “tough talking Yorkshire men” and venomous speeches about “strivers and skivers.” The politics of divide and conquer is the oldest form of politics there is, and it’s no surprise to see it practiced by some of the vested interests in the game here in Scotland. Yet, lest we forget … something significant happened last year. The maligned and the ignored, the weak and the voiceless found something they never realised they had. They discovered that, in a very real sense, the power was in their hands.

Last year, the fans rose up when the governing bodies and the media went all-out to save Rangers from the self-inflicted wounds caused by a decade of cheating, malpractice and ineptitude. I have no problem calling that what it was.

What happened at Rangers seemed incredible, but it was all too predictable, and some of us had been talking about it for years before it hit. The Association seemed caught in the headlights but it would amaze me if they really were as insular and ignorant as they appeared. They must have known how bad the outlook was for Rangers. They just chose to ignore it.

They were aided and abetted by a thoroughly disreputable media, a collection of cowards and compromisers, charlatans and frauds, masquerading as journalists, but who long ago laid aside any claim to be bold investigators and settled for commenting on events as they unfolded. More often than not, with their ill-informed opinions, sometimes due to weaknesses in intellect and others wilfully ignorant, they failed even in that.

Entire newspapers became PR machines for crooks and swindlers. They aided in the scam because they didn’t do their jobs, some because they were lazy, some because they were incompetent and others because they wanted a seat at the table and were willing to sacrifice whatever integrity they once had in exchange for one.

That all of this was embraced by the Rangers fans is amazing to me. They trusted when they should have been asking questions. They closed their eyes, covered their ears and sang their battle tunes at the top of their voices so they wouldn’t have to hear anything they didn’t like. As incredible as I found it then, and still find it now – and now, even more so, when they have already seen the results of it once – I find it pathetic too, and I do feel pity for some of them.

A lot of these people are genuine football fans, and nothing more. They have no interest in the phony narrow nationalism, or the over-blown religion, or the notion of supremacy which manifested itself in a ludicrous statement from McCoist when interviewed recently on Sky.

Some of the Rangers fans look at their team of duds, kids and journeymen, they look at a boardroom of cowards and crooks, they look at a failing manager in his first (and last) job in the game and at a dark future and are not in the least bit impressed by, or interested in, the chest-out arrogance espoused in those ridiculous words “we are the people.” They know full well that their present crisis was made by men like McCoist, and they understand that pretentious posturing is not an act born of strength, but a scrambling around in the gutter, and a symptom of weakness.

They understand their position, and they hate it. And because they care about Rangers, because they value the club, because they cherish those things that made it a great Scottish institution, they want that back. They understand that before the Union Jack waving, Sash singing, poppy wearing, Nazi saluting, Orange element became the public face of their support Rangers meant something else, and that, above all things, is what pains them the most.

People do not hate Rangers. When the country appeared to turn its back last year, they were turning the back on favouritism and the bending of rules. Yet it would be a lie to say that there is not an element of dislike in the gleeful mockery of many rival fans.

But they don’t hate Rangers either. They hate the version of it around which a certain section of the support continues to dance. They hate the version which hates, and so too do many, many, many Rangers supporters, and they definitely deserve better.

David Murray chose not to openly challenge that version. Indeed, he encouraged certain strands of it to flourish and grow, with his “Britishness Days” and his effort to turn the club into the “team that supports the troops.” Other clubs have done as much, if not more, for the British Army than the one that plays out of Ibrox. Other clubs have given more money. Other clubs have lent their support to those on the front lines. They just chose to do it with respect, and with class, and with dignity. They chose to do it in private, understanding that there eventually comes a tipping point between looking after the ends of the soldiers and using them to promote your own.

The army has not battened on to Rangers. Rangers has battened on to them, and although it is unclear when an altruistic motive became darker, what started out as a gesture of solidarity is now used to entrench division and promote a notion of superiority.

Craig Whyte took over from Murray and immediately understood the lure of the “dog whistle.” He knew too that the media would accept whatever he told them, without question, and as he spoke up for “Rangers traditions” he made sure the lunatic fringe was well onside. He met face to face with the hard-core extremists in the support first and made them his praetorian guard. They spoke up for him until the day the club entered administration.

So, whereas Murray pandered to them and Whyte used them to further his own ends, it was only a matter of time before someone suggested to Charles Green that he could use the same tactics to win over the support. He went even further and blatantly promoted and encouraged this mind-set, and stoked the hate and nonsense to frightening new heights. The same people who cheered Whyte to the rafters jumped on board the Big Blue Bus and the results are clear.

Through all of it, the ordinary Rangers fan has seen his club buffered against the rocks, battered, broken, smashed to smithereens and sunk. Now there’s a big hole in the side of the lifeboat, and they are terrified that further tragedies await.

They are right to be concerned. Much of the media is still not telling them what they need to know. The people in charge of their club – the owners who have lied, the former hack who covered up the truth about Whyte and now acts as a mouthpiece for Green, the “club legends” who are content to sup with the devil and take his greasy coin when they should be standing toe-to-toe with the fans – are trying to silence those members of the press who do have facts to present.

How many times now have media outlets been banned from Ibrox for daring to report the truth? The manager who demanded the names of a committee last year defends those inside the walls who are desperate to keep secret the things that are going on. He is either an unprincipled coward, or he is, himself, bought and paid for. The fans suffer for it.

The “inconvenient truth” is still being kept from them, and this denies them any chance to play an active role in their club. Indeed, it is all too possible that they’ve passed a point of no return, and that their club is heading for a new liquidation event and it can no longer be stopped.

In either case, their power has been eroded to the point at which they must feel they have nothing left to do but stand back and watch what happens next.

They are wrong. I am a socialist. I believe in the inherent good of people. I think the ordinary decent Rangers fans are the only people left who can save their club … and the means by which they will do it is as simple as it could be.

They must stand up for “big government.” They must embrace the need for a “strong state.” They must lobby the SFA, and they must trust the SFA and they must get the SFA to follow its own rules and thereby save them from any further harm.

There is a tendency amongst some Celtic fans to see our governing bodies as pro-Rangers. If it is true then those running our game are ruining Scottish football without benefiting the thing they love more. The incalculable harm that has been done to Rangers in the last 20 some months is a direct result of the subservient media and the willingness of the football authorities to be “deaf, dumb and blind.” Those who believe this has actually helped the Ibrox club have not been paying attention in class. It has irrevocably scarred them, and it may yet have played a hand in destroying them once and for all, as a force if not as a club entirely.

For years, the SFA sat and did nothing as a club in their association operated a sectarian signing policy. They did nothing whilst the fans sang sectarian songs. In their failure to act they strengthened those elements of the Rangers support, instead of isolating, alienating and eventually helping to eliminate those who saw that club as a totem pole of division and hate. Their failure over EBT’s, and their lack of scrutiny, led to one of the greatest scandals in the history of sport, and I say that with no equivocation at all. The testimony of their registrations officer in the Lord Nimmo Smith investigation was a disgrace and in years to come it will rank as one of the most disreputable and damaging moments in the association’s history.

The most egregious failures of all were the failures in the so-called “fit and proper person” tests, which allowed first Whyte and then Charles Green to assume controlling positions at Ibrox. They will pass the buck and say the responsibility lies with the club itself, in much the same way as they are content to let the club investigate itself at the present time, but any neutral who looks at this stance knows it is unprincipled and spineless. It’s like letting the defence set the terms at a trial. It is foxes investigating the chicken coop.

It is a blueprint for corruption, and a recipe for disaster.

It is now too late for the SFA to declare Green “unfit”, as it was too late when they finally slapped that title on Craig Whyte. He and his allies own Rangers, and they control its destiny. They can push the club to the wall if they choose, in the final extremity, if that gets them what they want. The time for changing that is past. The damage has already been done. The barbarians are not at the gates. They are inside the walls, and sacking the city.

The SFA will be forced to punish Rangers for the sins of the owners, for the second time in as many years, and whilst it is right that the club face up to that, all the better to send a message to other clubs and other owners, the SFA cannot be allowed to slither off the hook here as though this was none of their doing. Green will skip off into the sunset. Craig Whyte has yet to pay his fine. These people never cared about Scottish football and they don’t care now.

The SFA are supposed to. Our governing body is supposed to govern, for the good of the whole game, and not as a support system for a single club. What they have allowed to happen on their watch is absolutely shameful and if the people responsible were men at all, with any sense of accountability, they would resign en masse.

They can pretend ignorance, but only the truly ignorant would accept that. Craig Whyte was not inside Ibrox a week before RTC and other sites were dismantling his entire business history, with some of the people here doing the work the SFA would not. Whyte himself claims to have made the governing bodies aware of the scale of what was facing the club, and they did nothing at all. Heads should have rolled a year ago.

In October of last year, on this very site, I posted an article in which I wrote:

“Which isn’t to say the due diligence matter isn’t worrying, because, of course, it is. Again, no-one is going to convince me that the SFA has conducted proper due diligence on Charles Green and his backers. No-one will convince me they are satisfied that this club is in safe hands, and that the game in this country will not be rocked by a further implosion at Ibrox. They failed to properly investigate Craig Whyte, because of lax regulations requiring disclosure from the club itself, regulations which are just a joke, but they can be forgiven for that as the press was talking sheer nonsense about him having billions at his disposal, and a lot of people (but not everyone!) were either convinced or wanted to be convinced by him.

To have witnessed what Whyte did, to have witnessed the Duff & Phelps “process” of finding a buyer, and having Green essentially emerge from nowhere, with a hundred unanswered questions as to his background and financing, for the SFA to have given this guy the go ahead, only for it to blow up in their faces later, would annihilate the credibility of the governing body and necessitate resignations at every level. There would be no hiding place.”

There are times when it is fun to be right, but this is not one of them. It is dispiriting and disquieting to have been so on the nose. It scares the Hell out of me, as someone who loves football in this country, to have seen this matter clearly when the people running our game apparently either did not or chose to ignore very real, very obvious, concerns. The Internet Bampots had no special insight or access to information that was denied those at the SFA. We just weren’t prepared to ignore it and pretend that it wasn’t there. There was too much at stake.

I have become convinced that things will never change until the Rangers supporters join us in demanding the full and unabridged truth here. They need to come out from under the bed, and confront their fears. They need to be willing to take the consequences, so that their club can emerge clean from this, and start again, with all this behind them.

And it can all happen with one simple thing. The application of the rules.

The existence of laws comes down to a simple principle; they protect society from those elements within it who are interested only in their own selfish ends. We may cry out at those rules and regulations we see as “restrictive”, but the law was not made to restrict our freedoms but to protect them. Had the SFA years ago acted against Rangers sectarian signing policy, and the songs from the stands, the club would not have mutated to the point where there was no help on hand when they needed it the most. Let’s not kid ourselves about this; Whyte and Green were only able to grab control because the club itself has a dreadful image which put off respectable and responsible buyers. The SFA could have helped change that perception years ago and did nothing.

The SFA could have conducted its own investigation into who Craig Whyte was. They could have asked David Murray for full disclosure when he was running up £80 million of debt, a sum of money that is beyond belief for a single club in a small provincial backwater league. Had they had the guts to do that the club would never have spent itself into oblivion and forced the hand of Lloyds, which led indirectly to their ignominious end.

The SFA could have fully investigated Charles Green and the means by which he took control, instead of rushing through a license. His emergence at the last minute was transparently suspicious and designed to force them into a quick decision, but they did not have to bow to that pressure by making one, without being in possession of the facts, as it is now 100% clear they were not.

Had they asked for every document, had they insisted on legal affidavits and personal securities from investors (and this would have been perfectly legitimate and is common place in other licensing areas) none of this would have come to pass. After Craig Whyte they had a moral responsibility to the rest of the game to get this one right and their failure is without parallel in the history of Scottish football.

As the club hurtles towards a new abyss, names are cropping up which should send a shudder down the spines of every honest, genuine supporter of not only Rangers but every team in the land. The SFA claims that a strong Rangers is essential for the sake of Scottish football, but they have been extraordinarily lax in protecting that club, and therefore the game, from destructive elements. Craig Whyte and Charles Green had dubious personal histories, and the acquisition of the club itself was mired in controversy and scandal. Yet it was allowed.

Neither Green nor Whyte were known to have operated outside the law, yet neither was worthy of trust or stood up to scrutiny. Neither man should ever have been granted the status as fit and proper persons to assume a role in our national sport, and if it is true of them what can we say about the three men who are, presently, being touted as the Great White Hopes for a bright, new Rangers future; Dave King and the Easdale brothers?

King recently cut a deal with the South African government over an on-going dispute over taxes. In other words, he pled guilty and accepted the central plank of their argument; that for years he was engaged in wilfully with-holding vast revenues from their Treasury. The media does not like to put it like that, and the SFA seems willing to ignore it utterly, and this would be scandalous enough. But it does not stop there. HRMC rules – as well as the SFA’s own governance documents – actually bar him from serving on the board of the new club.

Last but not least, aside from being an admitted tax cheat, King is also awaiting trial in South Africa, having been indicted for corruption, forgery and fraud – 300 charges in total. Yet as recently as last week, we were told that the Association was willing to look at him and consider representations from his lawyers. This is almost beyond belief.

If Dave King’s position is untenable, and he is yet to be convicted of a crime, what can we say about the position of the Easdale’s? One of the two brothers, Sandy, has already served jail time. He is a convicted criminal, a fraudster nonetheless, who’s “victim” was the same Treasury who are appealing one case involving the old club and liquidated it entirely over another. This is precisely the kind of “businessman” the fit and proper person test was supposed to weed out, and if the SFA holds its nose here the reek will stink out the halls at Hampden for decades. If King or the Easdale’s are judged fit and proper, then who exactly is the test for? What exactly do you have to do to fail it? How do we explain the existence of laws, when these are not applied?

Pascal says “Law without force is impotent.” The SFA’s weakness has allowed one version of Rangers to destroy itself, and has allowed an existential risk to another. If the next power at Rangers resides in South Africa or Greenock I can say with some certainty that the Association is engaged in an even more dangerous roll of the dice, because the surfacing of fresh scandal will be an ever present risk, and will be of the sort no-one will survive.

The damage to Scottish football will take years to heal. The Scottish game has been through enough trauma. It does not need more. It barely survived the last calamity to hit Rangers. The rest of us should not be forced to pay the price of the next one.

The greater damage will be done to Rangers itself. If the Green crisis ends in another collapse – as it well might; another administration event is a certainty, and another liquidation is a much more likely prospect than it was before 14 February 2012 – the club will once again have to start from the bottom, and this time the reputational damage will be impossible to repair. The club faces internal strife, sporting sanctions, and criminal investigations. The last takeover might be declared a fraud. the Whyte takeover will almost certainly be. The share issue might be invalid, as well as criminal, and the people involved may well end up in jail. Lawsuits could follow from investors, there could be as yet unknown consequences from the Upper Tier Tax Tribunal (thank you Brogan Rogan for pointing out what those might be) and a host of other issues.

Rangers fans must be the loudest voices here. How do you want the world to view your club in years to come? Do you want one to be proud of, or one forever associated with the shame and disgrace of these days gone by? The one which bailed out on its tax obligations. The one with supporters who disgrace your very name. The one which allowed Whyte and Green to take you to the cleaners and send you to the wall. The one which handed over control to one convicted criminal and another awaiting trial. Do you want to be reborn clean, or mired in the muck?

David Murray destroyed your financial stability. He made it so no bank would issue you a line of credit and no investor of note wanted to buy. Craig Whyte liquidated you. Charles Green has cast the future of the Newco into doubt and acted in a manner which has annihilated your credibility with the financial markets for decades to come.

Between these three men, they have taken everything from you, and the press and the people who run the game here, as well as some of your own blindly ignorant fans, have allowed them to do all this and more. Now they conspire to hand the keys to Ibrox to other men of questionable character, who will wreck further havoc on the reputation of the club.

The Scottish Football Association has damaged the game it was supposed to protect, but above all else their greatest failure of governance was a failure to protect one of its biggest clubs from its own excesses and those of its owners.

Rangers fans, the SFA have betrayed your trust, more than the trust of any other club. What you must insist on now is full disclosure and transparency from the powers that be in Hampden. The SFA has to end the charade of allowing your club to handle this in-house. They must hand everything over to an outside agency – whether a legal one, or a footballing body like UEFA – and they must demand co-operation and answers, and threaten to withhold the license if they don’t get them.

You must not be afraid of that. You must embrace it. The men with their hands on the gears at Ibrox are motivated by money, and nothing more. If the license is withdrawn their “investments” are worthless. They cannot risk that.

You must demand that the rules on fit and proper persons are applied, and where necessary even made stronger, to prevent your club falling into unclean hands. You must demand that they protect your reputation from further damage, by getting this all out there and acting accordingly, even if that means your club does not play football for at least a year.

You must be willing to suck it all up, knowing that what will emerge is a Rangers which has been cleansed and moves forward with honour, and dignity, led by custodians who treasure it rather than those who know the cost of everything and the value of nothing.

The Rangers Standard has recently emerged as a genuine voice for those in your support who are sick and tired of what Rangers has become, and want it restored to something that is worthy of the love and respect in which you hold it. On that website, there are discussions about the kind of club you seek to be and about whether the institution of Rangers is about more than just football.

If that’s how you feel about it then you know it is about more than how many titles the club can claim, about more than just results on the park, about more than just the game. Rangers, like Celtic, is an idea. It has to be something you are proud of.

I am a socialist, but one with a fevered imagination and a tendency to write very dark things. This piece won’t have been good reading for some of you (perhaps all of you haha!) but I think there’s more hope in here than in other things I’ve written.

In spite of everything that’s come to pass, I still believe. I believe in Scottish football. I believe in our system of football governance, even if those who are working in it are failing on some level.

In society, as much as we strain against them, laws exist for our protection. To fail to enforce them is to leave us at the mercy of those elements who would do us harm. The rules of football ensure the protection of all clubs, not just a few.

The failure to enforce the rules has never had graver consequences than here in Scotland.  The irony is that bending and breaking them has hurt the one club those violations were designed to help. It cannot be allowed to happen again.

The rules must be applied without fear or favour.

The best must find their conviction, and their passionate intensity once more.

James is a co-editor of the On Fields of Green Blog

About the author

Trisidium administrator

Trisidium is a Dunblane businessman with a keen interest in Scottish Football. He is a Celtic fan, although the demands of modern-day parenting have seen him less at games and more as a taxi service for his kids.

5,802 Comments so far

embarrassinglyneutralPosted on10:01 pm - May 31, 2013

I think it would have been a more astute move for Rangers to hire someone with considerable financial acumen as Chairman at this time to be honest. However, a lot of the qualities looked for in a “manager” at any level and in any profession – drive for success, ability to work in a team, ability to motivate – will serve him well in this role, as he doubtless has these qualities. If a good support system existed around the board then this could be a great appointment. However, I fear that he will be hung out to dry when it suits those around him. Personally, for the good of everyone involved in and with an interest in Scottish football, I hope that these backroom issues at Rangers get sorted out once and for all very quickly, and we can all get back to just focussing on how b0ll0x we are at football rather than how b0ll0x we are at running football clubs and national football administrations.

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tic6709Posted on10:03 pm - May 31, 2013

bogsbollox @ 21.43.
Agreed. But did the wee man with the bunnet no make a bob or two out o’ the Celtic Fans?

The Wee man with the Bunnet made a Lot of money from the Celtic fans, but look at his legacy.

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newtzPosted on10:05 pm - May 31, 2013

bogsdollox says:

Friday, May 31, 2013 at 20:23

Sorry @bogs (lol) …. aware that many jump in and out of forums etc and others join late on ….
and easy to forget not all will get some of statements ….. no problems ….

I guess you follow the CVA refusal and purchase on june 14th

The novation is one of the claims by CW in the QC’d LBC …

Res 11 …… some confusion …… assignment of shares ? …….. right to assign (assets ?) without autorisation ? …. was this the method used to novate ? …… good explaination about 5 or 6 pages back to contradict this ….. bottom line is though ….. needed authorisation of all share holders ….. Kaboom ??

The reference to Pritchard Stockbrokers …….. wow …… where to start ……. a very good read explaining (most) is here ….. for those who have not read …. it is an eye opener !

Why did I include it ….. ?
Because CW was so heavily linked and just when he needed the funds most …… one channel was cut off …. !

Like I said ….. a busy day ….. IMO …. the key day

The key piece of the jigsaw we are all missing is ……. the actual asset transfer mechanism ….

Is CtH holding off on this for one final kaboom moment ?
Does … CtH have this info …. ?
Is CW holding this info back as his Ace ….. ? ….. deliberately not included in LBC so far … ?
Or …. is it CG’s get out of jail card ….. !

SImply fascinating !

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embarrassinglyneutralPosted on10:05 pm - May 31, 2013

Tic 6709 says:

Friday, May 31, 2013 at 22:03

bogsbollox @ 21.43.
Agreed. But did the wee man with the bunnet no make a bob or two out o’ the Celtic Fans?

The Wee man with the Bunnet made a Lot of money from the Celtic fans, but look at his legacy.

Indeed. He did a great job. And he deserved what he earned out of Celtic, the club he left behind were unrecognisable from the one he took on.

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wottpiPosted on10:05 pm - May 31, 2013

sanoffymessssoitizzhizzemdyfonedrapolis says:
Friday, May 31, 2013 at 20:31

Can’t see why you are getting the TD treatment.
Under the current SFL rules, with a bit jiggery pokery with dumping those out of contract and putting people out on loan they can work within the 22 quota of over 21’s this season.

The reworked list you have provided shows a team of experienced pros who should be more than capable of winningDiv 2, so why go on like they they are still hoping to sign more players?

The problem with that is that it looks like they they have no more “season ticket selling – player signing PR stunts” (or maybe just one more player) unless they managed to get one or more under 21 wunderkids from somewhere. Its Walter as Chairman and journeymen professionals and then thats them stuck for the whole season including the January transfer window, unless at a cost, they sack some players or get the rules bent by the authorities.

Then it is a matter of seeing what happens ,IF, they get promotion to Div 1 and what rules are about by the end of next season.

The alternative is that they are gambling now on filling their quota in the hope that if a reconstruction deal is agreed then the over 21 rule will get punted before the start of the season or at the very last not getting taken forward into an SPL2 they will be aiming to get promoted into next year or innvited into this year.

If the rule still applies in 2014/15 then they can only get rid of five existing over 21 that will be out of contract and they will be replaced by some of the youngester on longer terms deals and maybe one or two new signings.

Frankly the rule does them a big favour because without it, by all accounts, Ally would be willing to sings another 6 to 8 over 21’s on good money eating up the cash each transfer window until he had the same bloated squad that caused the oldco the problems in the first place.

As I have said for a long time, instead of looking back to the past, if they just buckled down, shut the feck up, a got on with some hard work within the rules of the league they have found themsleves in they would do just fine and dandy.

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john clarkePosted on10:20 pm - May 31, 2013

bogsdollox says:
Friday, May 31, 2013 at 21:43
‘…Agreed. But did the wee man with the bunnet no make a bob or two out o’ the Celtic Fans?..’
Indeed he did.

There is nothing in itself wrong with making a profit, you will agree.

Nor is driving a hard bargain in itself evil.

And Fergus was not anything but a hard-headed business man with not a lot of sentiment ( real or phoney).

But he knew what he wanted to do, he carefully planned how to do it, explained his business plan, and then single-mindedly brought it to fruition within in the planned time-table and in the teeth of some manufactured ‘objections’ by the authorities. No illicit or dodgy deals, no little ‘x-ways agreements’-everything above board with audit trails a mile wide and long.

No damage was done to Scottish Football, but a whole lot of reflected glory was enjoyed.( A few SFA and Celtic egos might have suffered a bruising, but I think the overwhelming majority of Celtic supporters ( except, perhaps, that ar*e Kelly), and most objective football supporters, would admit that Fergus left the club in great state.

On your second point, I’m not at all sure that I agree with you that the ‘two powerhouses’ were of a like mind in relation to the SFA.

Indeed, the contention of many on this blog is that there was too cosy a relationship between the Ibrox powerhouse and certain of the SFA personnel over many years.
It was this relationship which ultimately, while it may not have caused the demise of the Ibrox club, certainly made it easier for it to commit economic hara-kiri.

And it was the same relationship that created the subsequent turmoil in Scottish football, as the SFA and other bodies tried ( some think by abusing their powers and generally making illicit deals) first to save it, and that failing, tried to pretend that it had both died and not died, simultaneously.

At least, some believe this to have been the case right from the start, and their belief ( or, maybe even just there ‘wish’) seems increasingly likely to have been pretty close to the mark.

The tabloids are staying clear, of course, but there are indications that among the ‘serious’ press, there is a developing awareness that there are, indeed, serious questions to be asked of that Ibrox/SFA relationship.

View Comment

BayviewGoldPosted on10:31 pm - May 31, 2013

re Fergus McCann, as a neutral at the time ( I still am) I remember as the whole scenario played out and looking at how and what he did, the apparent good sense of the man and contrasted it with the high level of antagonism he received from many sources at the time. Including a very sizable proportion of the CFC fans. Well it seemed to be from the ones I knew at work etc. I think history will and should judge him well – and there has been recognisable shift in the proportion of CFC fans to speak for him – the fact that he set a firm timetable and passed on a righted ship when his planned time was up speaks volumes for me. He could have hung around and continued to “milk it” but he didn’t and sold at a very reasonable rate. I think there are many supporters of many clubs – EFFC included – that would jump at the chance of a few years of such leadership. IMHO.

View Comment

bogsdolloxPosted on10:33 pm - May 31, 2013

john clarke says:
Friday, May 31, 2013 at 22:20

Fergus had a choice. He could have left his money in the club but disappeared over the horizon with his swag bag filled to the gunnels. If it was my club I would have opposed that.

On my second point, I was merely pointing out that the Celtic campaign against the SFA and referees was long running and only recently have the Rangers fans marched against the SFA. Nobody is happy with the bias and corruption that much must be true.

View Comment

Nuclear SheepPosted on10:42 pm - May 31, 2013

Tic 6709 at 19:40

Wanyama ==£12 million +


If this is true, then take the money. Learn by your mistakes. Bobo’s going to get you.


View Comment

BayviewGoldPosted on10:56 pm - May 31, 2013

bogsdollox says:
Friday, May 31, 2013 at 22:33

Fergus had a choice. He could have left his money in the club but disappeared over the horizon with his swag bag filled to the gunnels. If it was my club I would have opposed that.


It depends how you look at it – he invested money and time in recovering a failed business, he then sold on his shares and left, but remember how shares work – when he initially purchased them he put money into the company, he then floated the company – so when he sold them on the public market he was simply passing his share of the company to someone else for a financial sum. That subsequent sale neither took money out of or put it into into the business. So in essence he did leave his money in the club – his original investment was not removed, and his share is still there in the form of a certain number of share certificates, just that someone else owns them. He also left his time and experience – which was probably more valuable to the outcome.

View Comment

bangordubPosted on11:02 pm - May 31, 2013

bayviewgold says:
Friday, May 31, 2013 at 22:56

More importantly, he demonstrated that it is possible to invest in a football club, turn it around, generate a profit and do it honourably with integrity.
Unlike some others I could mention…………

View Comment

tic6709Posted on11:10 pm - May 31, 2013

Something for the week-end,relax and enjoy folks. ( if it works )

The Calypsonians – Taj Mahal – YouTube

► 6:32► 6:32

Oct 1, 2008 – Uploaded by roolika
The Calypsonians – Taj Mahal ·

View Comment

john clarkePosted on11:13 pm - May 31, 2013

bogsdollox says:
Friday, May 31, 2013 at 22:33
‘…..Nobody is happy with the bias and corruption that much must be true.’
And that simple statement ,bd, is a good starting point!

If there is widespread dissatisfaction with (in particular) the SFA board, then the time has come for the SFA voting membership as a whole to:

exercise their ordinary business sense and

-call an EGM , putting ‘league re-construction’ on a back-burner

-require the resignations of the elected Board members,

-have fresh elections,

-require the new board to examine Regan’s ( or any other paid official of the Board) personal initiative in suggesting to, or leading the old board in, any misuse or abuse of office,

-and take such action as may be appropriate , including sacking and the appointment of a new CEO or other staff if justified on the evidence

-carry out a thorough review of the’ saga’,

-publish the ‘5-way agreement’, showing how the rules were(or were not) properly applied

etc etc.

-and get us all back on track with the ordinary basic business of running the sport we all love as a sport, where what we see on the pitch is unsullied by corruption and bureaucratic bias on any basis whatsoever.

I opened this post with an ‘if’.

But really, there is no ‘if’.

Thousands of us think that the present Board of the SFA is heavily compromised.

And we know that many club members of the SFA are appalled at the the sheer dithering inefficiency, lack of true leadership, and the inevitable bully-boy tactics of compromised men who have lost any moral authority.

Time for radical change?


Which small group of club chairmen will do the needful?

All it requires is ( I speak under correction) for 10 members to call for an EGM.

Are there 10 brave men out there?

Because, if there are, they will immediately find the requisite level of support.

I am sure of that.

And the true and genuine soul of Scottish Football will be saved.

View Comment

Mark (@awolz1)Posted on11:16 pm - May 31, 2013

bogsdollox says:
Friday, May 31, 2013 at 21:43



Rate This

john clarke says:
Friday, May 31, 2013 at 21:27

But, as said before, it is the near-certainty, in my mind at least, that there has been a measure of corruption in and around the governance of our game AND a complete lack of serious scrutiny of that corruption by the MSM, that keeps me glued to this blog.

And the death of a second, corrupt, club is to be welcomed if it brings about a cleansing of all that has been rotten in our Football governance and administration ,and the punishment of the guilty men.


Agreed. But did the wee man with the bunnet no make a bob or two out o’ the Celtic Fans?

There is corruption in the Scottish game – that much is obvious. But to my mind the “expose the SFA” campaign has been a long running one and indeed even the other half of the old firm support it. Why with the two powerhouses in the game are they still there?

Yes bunnet made a fair penny and yes from the fans, and with our blessing. If you asked any fan whether the premium for the bunnet was worth it, we basically paid for an expert and genuine wholehearted honest expert, who took not sh!t and delivered fully on his promise….no issues here..
Hold on isn’t Liberty or Wavetower or one of a million wholly or partly C whyte owned companies a “turnaround specialist company”?

View Comment

Mark (@awolz1)Posted on11:19 pm - May 31, 2013

is it dawning on the zombies that they better just row in behind the spivs to save the ground and training ground/flood plain?
Is there anything left for the true rangers fan anymore except desperation?

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john clarkePosted on11:40 pm - May 31, 2013

Completely OT, but it’s Friday night.
Just listened to Mildred Bailey singing ‘Baby,That ain’t right’.


And maybe not so off topic, if we substitute ‘SFA’ for ‘Baby’ ?!!

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bogsdolloxPosted on11:44 pm - May 31, 2013

Tic 6709 says:
Friday, May 31, 2013 at 22:03Rate This

bogsbollox @ 21.43.
Agreed. But did the wee man with the bunnet no make a bob or two out o’ the Celtic Fans?

The Wee man with the Bunnet made a Lot of money from the Celtic fans, but look at his legacy.

His legacy could have been so much better had he not taken the profit out of Celtic and Scotland for that matter. That is my point I suppose.

View Comment

bogsdolloxPosted on11:50 pm - May 31, 2013

bayviewgold says:
Friday, May 31, 2013 at 22:56

Yes, yes we all know how capitalism works but we don’t all have to pray at it’s altar.

An alternative could have been to arrange matters so that the fans stayed in charge and prevented a repeat of the family dynasty farce that almost brought the club to ruin. This is a club that is rightly proud of its heritage – a heritage that was built by the goodwill and money of its fans. Not by capitalists spotting an opportunity, bagging a BIG profit and not sharing it.

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newtzPosted on11:52 pm - May 31, 2013

Correction … to my earlier posts

FSA did not freeze Pritchard assets and bank accounts on June 14th 2012 …

Instead …

On February 13, 2012, Rangers applied to the Court of Session to appoint administrators after HM Revenue and Customs raised a £9 million action over the club’s non-payment of PAYE and VAT amassed since Whyte’s takeover.

That same day, the FSA banned Pritchard Stockbrokers from trading having been caught using “client money to meet their own expenses”.

sorry for misinformation and any confusion ….


In the months leading up to this ….. previously leaked communications showed requests from RFC to CW to transfer funds to cover wages …. !

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Mark (@awolz1)Posted on11:53 pm - May 31, 2013

His legacy could have been so much better had he not taken the profit out of Celtic and Scotland for that matter. That is my point I suppose.
hold on he created more wealth in the game, he brought Celtic up a level or two brought more fans back TO the game, you are being a little obtuse here, or maybe you are on the wind up. Fergus McCann by ANY standard was SUPERB for the Scottish game and Celtic in particular.
To deride or try to pick holes in his achievements is baffling

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bogsdolloxPosted on11:53 pm - May 31, 2013

john clarke says:
Friday, May 31, 2013 at 23:13

Can’t disagree with any of that. What in your opinion is stopping it happening? It’s up to the clubs is it not?

View Comment

newtzPosted on12:00 am - Jun 1, 2013

john clarke says:

Friday, May 31, 2013 at 23:40

Also OT …. sorta

Been listening to Coldplay Rush of Blood to the Head (Album) while reviewing CtH docs
#NotRecommended ….. !
#DontTryThisAtHome …. !

View Comment

BayviewGoldPosted on12:04 am - Jun 1, 2013

bogsdollox says:
Friday, May 31, 2013 at 23:44

His legacy could have been so much better had he not taken the profit out of Celtic and Scotland for that matter. That is my point I suppose.


it may be your point – but you’re wrong, now as @mark says you may be on the wind up, and you are deliberately phrasing it the way you are – but fundamentally he took no profit out of celtic or scottish football, celtic had the same money in the bank and the same capital value before and after he sold his shares. So no money left Celtic or Scottish football, now money did leave the UK when he returned to Canada but it was the money from whoever he sold his stock to not celtic’s money. (was it dermott ?) Now if you had phrased it differently and said he could have foregone his personal profit and given his profit percentage of dermott’s money to celtic plc as a gift then that is a valid point but pretty unrealistic expectations. As for the fans owning it – they can – get online to your broker and put a buy order on CCP stock.

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goosyPosted on12:08 am - Jun 1, 2013

I bet

The PN investigation and all the other “legal” issues being dealt with by RIFC (including HMRC

appeal ,IPO and AIM, etc) are one of the many ways being used by the Spivs to siphon cash out of RIFC .


Take note Walter

The first surprise you will get as Chairman is the size of the bill from PN for doing next to nothing
When this bill arrives and you gasp with surprise…………
Why don`t you demand a summary of what has been paid out in “legal” expenses over the past 12 months ?

If you do

I bet

1 You don`t get an answer until the ST money is safely siphoned to an offshore “bank”

2 You are astounded at the size of the legal bill

And while you get over the shock

You may wish to consider TSFM as a means of educating yourself on how asset stripping and money laundering gets done “legally” by real Spivs

Its all in the pipeline right now

View Comment

john clarkePosted on12:08 am - Jun 1, 2013

bogsdollox says:
Friday, May 31, 2013 at 23:44
‘..His legacy could have been so much better had he not taken the profit out of Celtic and Scotland for that matter. That is my point I suppose…’
I understand your idealism.

It would be lovely if people donated their skills, energy, and financial resources, and took no financial reward for it ( like those wonderful lottery winners who have spread some of their money into community projects).

But just as you ( I make assumptions here) would not accept that you had any moral duty to sell what you have and give it to the charity of your choice, so it must be allowed to Fergus (honourably, and in full conformity with law and business ethics) to take some profit from his legitimate labours.

View Comment

bogsdolloxPosted on12:09 am - Jun 1, 2013

bayviewgold says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 00:04

So you agree. He could have given a Fans Trust the shares and not taken the profit.

View Comment

macfurglyPosted on12:14 am - Jun 1, 2013

With respect, there is no serious discussion to be had on whether or not Fergus McCann was good for Celtic. Have a look at the Park, and the team and leave it alone.

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bogsdolloxPosted on12:15 am - Jun 1, 2013

john clarke says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 00:08

My basic point, which you are obviously ignoring to promote the capitalist ideal, is that the club was set up as a charity to feed the poor of Glasgow. Many years later that ideal was lost on Fergus. That’s all I’m saying.

View Comment

bogsdolloxPosted on12:18 am - Jun 1, 2013

goosygoosy says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 00:08

When you say “Legal” expenses are you meaning “Legal & Professional ” costs. I would also direct Walter to the headings of “Consultancy payments”, ” Finance Costs” and “other”

View Comment

BayviewGoldPosted on12:19 am - Jun 1, 2013

bogsdollox says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 00:09

So you agree. He could have given a Fans Trust the shares and not taken the profit.


Yes of course he could, but then you and I could hand our wage packets to the homeless, both are perfectly valid and reasonable and very charitable things to do, but unlikely 🙂

View Comment

newtzPosted on12:30 am - Jun 1, 2013

macfurgly says:

Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 00:06

…. transparency, justice ….

Rangers FC (Oldco) demonstrated deliberate lack of transparency and deceitful accounting with the use of suppressed data and identity disguise.

Such aggressive practises culminate in tremendous uncertainty while pursuing these egregious activities …

That uncertainty rested on the chance that either they will not be discovered to be tax avoiding or that if they are then the interpretation placed on the law that they were seeking to exploit would be favourable to them. …

Such was the fine line that Rangers FC (oldco) faced in their 2:1 majority victory over HMRC in the tax tribunal case (FTT).

The business practice of Rangers FC (oldco) has resulted in potential huge loses to the Treasury, alleged to be in excess of £70 million (with penalties), and does not account for an alleged previous debt write off by the previous owner in the region of £60 million through aggressive accounting practices …

Nor does it account for the smaller tax case against them for deliberate non payment of around £15 million of PAYE and National Insurance payments.

#Justice #Transparency #Governance

View Comment

bogsdolloxPosted on12:38 am - Jun 1, 2013

macfurgly says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 00:14

But we’re not millionaires sitting on a huge profit at the time and neither were we in charge of a club set up to raise funds to feed the poor of Glasgow but that doesn’t stop me giving to charity though.

View Comment

broadswordcallingdannybhoyPosted on12:55 am - Jun 1, 2013

newtz says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 00:30
In the court of public opinion, that would be an excellent part of the prosections closing statement.

Then Lawyer Leggat of the defence would shuffle his papers, slowly get to his feet, look each member of the jury in the eye and roar ‘We Are the Peepil’

Case Dismissed!!

View Comment

macfurglyPosted on12:56 am - Jun 1, 2013

Remember where we were at the time and look at where we are now. I’m proud of our history of charitable work and a colleague of mine, a bluenose in fact, on a very small scale recently benefitted from it. TRFC incidentally knocked back the request. Arbroath FC contributed. So did DUFC.I don’t mention this from a view of points scoring incidentally, just to note how things have changed at a grass roots level.
Fergus McCann was responsible for that, because without him we were knackered.. As above, I could give my wages to charity but don’t. This is obvious.
I agree with you entirely if your point is that capitalism avoids charitable work or even ethical business on the basis that “we must make more money in order to give more money” because the giving never happens. I don’t think this is a fair accusation to level at Fergus McCann. He did a good job – Celtic can now contribute. His price was fair. I live, I learn, I modify my Marxism.

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john clarkePosted on12:57 am - Jun 1, 2013

bogsdollox says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 00:15
‘.is that the club was set up as a charity to feed the poor of Glasgow. Many years later that ideal was lost on Fergus…’

I’m sorry, but that is ( think about it quietly) a really quite stupid remark, unworthy of you.

I will say, though, that there are historical questions to be asked about how ,precisely, Celtic transmogrified from a non-profit charitable, voluntary organisation into a commercial company, with shareholders and directors. That has never been explained to my satisfaction.

But that happened long, long ago.

Under Fergus, and today, CFC still has an ethos of solidarity with the community of the east end of Glasgow and with communities in other parts of the world.

And, there is no question of CFC ever siphoning off monies raised by dodgy ‘charity’ matches that are being investigated by OSCAR!

View Comment

macfurglyPosted on12:58 am - Jun 1, 2013

Sorry, that shoud have begun…

bogsdollox says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 00:38

View Comment

justshateredPosted on1:14 am - Jun 1, 2013

With the Old Club New Club back on the horizon again could I ask the neutrals to tell me the answer to the following question just for the sake of my own sanity;

If the ground has been sold…….. and

All contents of the ground have been sold …….. and

The training ground has been sold…….. and

All contents of the training ground have been sold …….. and

The history has been sold ….. and

The trademark has been sold.

What exactly is being liquidated?

There is rock all left so what are BDO racking up the costs against?

We all know that, regardless of what was and is reported in the media, there was no ‘holding company’, so what are the charges being levied against?

View Comment

Resin_lab_dogPosted on1:19 am - Jun 1, 2013

bogsdollox says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 00:09



Rate This


Turning sullied water and rotten fruit into fine wine is a genuine craft and it entitles you to a share of the corkage. This is what Fergus McCann did with Celtic. History records this as a fact, however grudgingly: the vintage may not be to everyone’s taste, for sure, but it is a fact and a feat that is worthy of respect, therefore.. so what?
Whereas turning gassy cola into piss and then charging a rent for the bottle it is served in seems to be what Charles Green and his spivs have in mind with TRFC. This is definitley an art in itself, but it might not be deemed to be worth such a handsome level of reward as that which will be ultimately exacted by the protagonists. We shall see. Time will tell.

View Comment

macfurglyPosted on1:22 am - Jun 1, 2013

newtz says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 00:30
0 0 i
Rate This
macfurgly says:

Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 00:06

…. transparency, justice ….

Agreed, entirely.
I could have said the same, but would have found it difficult to restrain myself and articulate that as well as you have, without going further into culture, history etc.
My point is that I now realise that there is no will to expose any of this on the part of people who should and who have the power to do so.
Where now?

View Comment

BayviewGoldPosted on5:31 am - Jun 1, 2013

bogsdollox says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 00:38

“it’s hungry work here under this bridge, please give me some food”

View Comment

Danish PastryPosted on5:53 am - Jun 1, 2013

Charles Green:

“We might be fighting Whyte for the next ten years. It’s simply mind-blowing. The authorities are investigating Whyte over other misdemeanours.
“He’s something that has to be brought to an end. Otherwise this club, the fans and the institution it is will be hampered fighting spurious claims for the next God knows how long and it’s not right.”

“He’s something that has to be brought to an end.”? I think I know what he means, the Whyte chapter, no doubt, at least I hope it’s not anything Greek. But if it’s all so obvious that Whyte is not involved, why would there still be the possibility of a decade of court cases? And why should Green have retired to France at all? Looks more and more as though it was the opportune moment to engineer an exit, as some on here have suggested.

Anyway, now we know that Rangersitis is an itch, what better song for Charles to hum in his French exile than the magnificent, Itchycoo Park 🙂

“Over bridge of sighs
To rest my eyes in shades of green
Under dreamin’ spires
To Itchycoo Park, that’s where I’ve been”

View Comment

TartawulverPosted on6:35 am - Jun 1, 2013

“He’s something that has to be brought to an end.”

Slip of the tongue or dog whistle?

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selfassessorPosted on6:41 am - Jun 1, 2013

Given T’Rangers’ recent announcement that their new non executive cardigan was “widely acknowledged” as their best ever manager, I took a look at how he compared to the greats. He doesn’t even make it in to the top 50! See football pantheon -50-greatest-managers-of-all-time website.

Even his win percentage at Oldclub was mid-ranking when compared their other managers – thank you Paul Mc for the analysis. Interestingly none of whom come near Jock Stein’s win percentage while managing Celtic. Even Sir Alex, number 1 in the compilation above, comes nowhere near the great man

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Danish PastryPosted on6:46 am - Jun 1, 2013

“I got addicted. It’s like an itch. It does get hold of you.” (C. Green)

So, finally an admission that newco Rangers did start from scratch 😀

I’ll get my calamine lotion …

View Comment

Madbhoy24941Posted on6:50 am - Jun 1, 2013

bogsdollox says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 00:15

Celtic were not setup with a view to giving all profits to charity, it was setup to assist a specific group of individuals who were in need at that time. The country, the area, those individuals and the club has evolved since then. If the club continued operating the way it was all those years ago, they would not exist now, how much money would be lost to charites then?

To imply that Celtic did or is doing something wrong by not giving a bigger percentage of revenue to charity because that goes against the founders wishes is playing to an agenda, in the interest of transparency, why don’t you tell us yours?

View Comment

yakutsukiPosted on7:13 am - Jun 1, 2013

A week into the close season and I’ve got withdrawals already.

Just watched the cup final again on BBC i player again. I’m still willing Griffiths to score when he
was one on one with Forster, lol.

When Ledley made it 3-0, I remember thinking, ‘Ok guys, that’s good enough,no more goals please.’

For a Celtic diehard, that’s big changes in attitude. I am also glad (in hindsight) that the league
cup went somewhere else. We could have had the treble if we won that one, but that would be selfish and greedy and don’t forget those defects almost killed the game here in Scotland!

As I ponder on my changing attitude, I ask myself, ‘Is it an age thing?’ That may be part of the
reason, but I think more importantly there has been a poison removed from the top level of our game just now and a great solidarity shown by most fans in their quest for a level playing field leading to fair, healthy competition all round.

Ahhh, my faith is being restored, great feeling. Loving this Armageddon thingy!

View Comment

torrejohnbhoyPosted on7:20 am - Jun 1, 2013

Can’t stop laughing ‏@corsica1968 8h
RCF Trustees 2011-12: Craig Whyte (Chair) – removed 13.05.12 Martin Bain – resigned 04.04.12 Jacqueline Gourlay – current #squeakybumtime

Can’t stop laughing Can’t stop laughing ‏@corsica1968 6h
@corsica1968 If Craig Whyte was removed as trustee of RCF on 13.05.12, who did it & why? Only RFC (IA) or OSCR had powers.

Can’t stop laughing Can’t stop laughing ‏@corsica1968 6h
If OSCR are still investigating RCF why would they remove CW as trustee? If D&P were appointed by CW, why would they remove him?

Can’t stop laughing Can’t stop laughing ‏@corsica1968 6h
Surely an employee of RFC(IA) hasn’t been a bit naughty & acted outwith their legal remit or powers?

John McAnderton John McAnderton ‏@JohnMcLean_HS67 6h
@corsica1968 why would RIFC PLC employ a new chair … Who has less experience on t board than my penguin?!?!

Iain Boyle Iain Boyle ‏@iainboyle 6h
@corsica1968 Not the bold Ms Gourlay again??

Can’t stop laughing Can’t stop laughing ‏@corsica1968 6h
@JohnMcLean_HS67 To sell STs…pure & simple. Cashflow issues; but what happened to the £22m.

Can’t stop laughing ‏@corsica1968 7h
Sevco, as a new legal entity, has absolutely no legal control or power over RCF. Right now, its BDO who control RCF as settlor.

Can’t stop laughing Can’t stop laughing ‏@corsica1968 6h
Which, of course, also kills the same club crap!

Can’t stop laughing ‏@corsica1968 6h
RCF Trustee powers set up by Murray, Bain & Dickson: LMFAO!

View Comment

y4rmyPosted on7:22 am - Jun 1, 2013

“We might be fighting Whyte for the next ten years. It’s simply mind-blowing.”

Yes, Charles, and it is your fault.

To have “Rangers-itis” means that one’s Rangers is inflamed, so I think it’s an entirely appropriate description of Green’s affliction.

View Comment

upthehoopsPosted on7:36 am - Jun 1, 2013

selfassessor says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 06:41

Given T’Rangers’ recent announcement that their new non executive cardigan was “widely acknowledged” as their best ever manager, I took a look at how he compared to the greats. He doesn’t even make it in to the top 50! See football pantheon -50-greatest-managers-of-all-time website.

Even his win percentage at Oldclub was mid-ranking when compared their other managers – thank you Paul Mc for the analysis. Interestingly none of whom come near Jock Stein’s win percentage while managing Celtic. Even Sir Alex, number 1 in the compilation above, comes nowhere near the great man

I don’t think anyone can argue about Sir Alex being number one, but in terms of a single achievement, I don’t believe he has bettered Stein’s winning of the European Cup in the circumstances he did. Sir Alex’s Champions League’s came with all the cash Man Utd could throw at it. Winning the Cup Winners Cup with Aberdeen was fantastic, but it was a cup with a far lower standard in general than the Champions Cup. I’d go as far to say it’s unlikely that any other country in Europe would even consider the notion that the Cup Winners Cup is an equal achievement to the Champions Cup. Such notions have been widespread in Scotland for years, but of course the reasoning behind them is zilch to do with Aberdeen’s achievements.

View Comment

torrejohnbhoyPosted on7:39 am - Jun 1, 2013

David Low ‏@Heavidor 4m

Former SFA CEO & Rangers legend Gordon Smith declared bankrupt after racking up debts of £644,411 via @Daily_Record

View Comment

TartawulverPosted on8:25 am - Jun 1, 2013

torrejohnbhoy(@johnbhoy1958) says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 07:39

Former SFA CEO & Rangers legend Gordon Smith declared bankrupt after racking up debts of £644,411
One line in the Record’s article stood out in this

“But you never know what sort of bad deals or legal wrangles someone can have been getting into behind the scenes.”

I’d think quite a few people involved with Rangers at management level over the past few years might also be very wary of past ‘bad deals or legal wrangles’.

View Comment

selfassessorPosted on8:34 am - Jun 1, 2013

upthehoops says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 07:36
3 1 Rate This
selfassessor says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 06:41


Agreed UTH. The point I was also trying to make however, is that Ferguson’s win percentage at Man U was 60%; Stein’s was 70% at Celtic.

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twopandaPosted on8:52 am - Jun 1, 2013

SFA should ignore the `independent` heavily caveated `conclusion` – It presents no evidence or facts.

Add – Planted claims and Headlines of `Vindication` or `Cleared` are thus not substantiated – at all
However, instances of deliberate misleading reporting are now evidenced as fact!

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essexbeancounterPosted on8:57 am - Jun 1, 2013

Just catching up with the overnight posts and would just like to express my appreciation for the quality of the contributions, both serious and comical/whimsy, particularly:

1) Iamacant – CG growing “noses” as against roses in France…pure dead brilliant…!
2) Danish Pastry – calamine lotion…the mere memory itches/hurts
3) John Clark(e) – typical sensible insights ( credit to his former English teacher!)

Amongst all the other contributors, it is what makes this blog such compulsive reading.

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chipm0nkPosted on8:58 am - Jun 1, 2013

I see the Record are reporting that Gordon Smith, ex Rangers and the SFA has placed himself into voluntary sequestration, with confirmed debts of over £600,000.

As this is a personal issue rather than a business one he genuinely could lose everything.

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jockybhoyPosted on8:58 am - Jun 1, 2013

Bogsdollix: nice work trying to find a negative angle on McCann’s saving of Celtic. I think the key thing is he put HIS money into the club, he wasnt a billionaire entrepreneur, he wasnt at the helm of a company of a internation metals empire wirth hundreds of millions, he was retired. He risked his family’s money to save the club. McCann acted quickly, decisively and with remarkable focus. As the money man he had to make decisions that were unpopular with the fans, and indeed with team management, but they were required to ensure the clubs survival. Noone in British football has ever achieved a turnaround like Fergus did.

So after the ship was righted, was on a stable footing and was priven viable ONLY THEN did he look to sell the shares to the fans. He was the only (?) guy with the financial stake in Celtic but he offered a share issue to ensure fan ownership and he got his money back, with interest, which is fair given the financial risk he and hus family took on. He also reaffirmed Celtic’s charitable history and ensured that was a major part of the organisation going forward.

So, shall we compare that with Murray who piled on debt, moved it around between companies and who publicly declared he wasnt taking a penny out of the club, but did benefit frim EBTs? Or Whyte who mortgaged future revenues to buy the club (much like the glasers at man utd) but was scuppered by McCoists failure to secure Champs League

revenue? Or Green who waited until the the club wasin liquidation
(it still is btw) before swooping in and, well we still arent quite sure what he did…

McCanns lack of PR spin, of courting conflict with hard-core fans (fergus has said no, those tunes will have to go…) is the polar

opposite of what has happened at NewGers and in truth I think the result will be the polar oppisite of what happened at Celtic.

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chipm0nkPosted on9:17 am - Jun 1, 2013

The differences between Fergus McCann and the current situation are many and varied. However main amongst them are.

1, He actually put his own money in, and paid off the clubs debt. He could have bought a new company with the assets but he didn’t, he did not think that was acceptable as a supporter of the club.

2, He invested his own money or money he borrowed to rebuild the club and the ground.

3, He saw what needed done, and he did it. It was not sound bite public relations. It was well thought out and well implemented business plans to turn the business around. To in fact totally re-structure it. It was far from a popularity contest, a lot of people hated what he did and some still do.

4, He told people exactly what he was going to do, and then did it. He stuck to the plan he had outlined.

5, He had a successful share issue which was if anything over-subscribed by the fans for their portion. (Celtic had two further successful share issues).

If I remember correctly after the share issue he gave Celtic £1m or so of the money he had personally made, in order to help with the youth system

Fergus McCann made a lot of money out of Celtic. However it was also Fergus McCann who put his own money in, who came up with the plan, who worked at it for 5 years and who stuck to what he had promised people. We would not have the modern Celtic without him, or someone with similar vision, ability and drive.

Personally I consider Fergus McCann a Celtic great.

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jonnyodPosted on9:38 am - Jun 1, 2013

Very well said .
Also the wee man had to rebuild a stadium ,whilst putting a team on the park to challenge Murray and his flexible (BOS) friend .He built the stadium to hold 60,000 supporters ,10,000 more than the clubs rivals across the city and Murray looked at every way to increase capacity to equal the extra ticket revenue .
The wee man said he would be out in 5 years and he stuck to his word .I would love him to come back and unfurl the league flag again one day and give the fans who fell for the MSM/LL agenda
and booed that day a chance to make amends ,I was not one of them and was angry that some fans booed the wee man but we all know too well what the MSM/LL are like ,in fact this blog is testament to that .
If I had booed Fergus I would be more than happy to get the chance to cheer all the louder and admit I had got it wrong .
When we have seen the actions taken to benefit Sevco ,it makes the wee man’s achievement all the more remarkable

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MikeCPosted on9:38 am - Jun 1, 2013

Re Fergus McCann, if I remember correctly Fergus only ever took half the salary he was entitled to as the CEO. and to stay he took money out of Celtic when he sold his shares is not correct either, the millions Fergus went away with was Dermot Desmond’s money NOT CELTICS

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jonnyodPosted on9:43 am - Jun 1, 2013

Oh and lets not forget J Kane who personally paid £1m to the BOS to keep the doors open when the club were hours away from closure ,he did this with no guarantee which way the battle would go .

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tonto8on8his8high8horsePosted on9:50 am - Jun 1, 2013

I see that Walters already muting escape before the proverbial hits the fan.

I read this as i’ll quit when the situation is clear it cannot be salvaged and do so with enough time to be absolvent of blame by the bears.

Then Walter will turn on the Spivs and the newspaper attacks will be furious.

You better believe he’s already forming the perfect exit strategy to fool the hoard.

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FIFAPosted on10:22 am - Jun 1, 2013

We are now entering the last chapter,what was the name of the Captain of the Titanic

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AlthetimPosted on10:28 am - Jun 1, 2013

Gordon Smith is indeed a true Rangers man. Spent money he didn’t have and ended up shafting creditors. He’s followed his beloved “club” down the same lavvy.

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ptd1978Posted on10:36 am - Jun 1, 2013

torrejohnbhoy(@johnbhoy1958) says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 07:39

Former SFA CEO & Rangers legend Gordon Smith declared bankrupt after racking up debts of £644,411

Looks like Smith had a visitor when the picture of his house was taken. The car registration in the driveway ends LNS.

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scapaflow14Posted on10:56 am - Jun 1, 2013

This morning’s press coverage tells us a couple of things

Firstly, the Jarndyce v Jarndyce line tells us that the board have been informed that Mr Whyte has an arguable case. Much of the criticism of PM has been underserved.

Secondly, the ground is being softened to prepare the fans for an unpalatable out of court settlement, to dispose of those matters where Mr Green did no wrong.

Thirdly, Incitatus is there to sell season tickets, an appalling act of cynicism.

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wottpiPosted on10:57 am - Jun 1, 2013

tonto8on8his8high8horse says:

Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 09:50

So from Walter’s interview and that from Green both see the past issues with CW going on for many years.
Now how have they come to that conclusion.
Someone somewhere must have warned them this is not over?
Presumably it must be the club’s/company’s lawyers who feel that CW has some form of cas that they need to fight.

If not then surely they would be able to advise the board that they are capable of shutting the whole CW thing down tomorrow?

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readceltPosted on10:58 am - Jun 1, 2013

Has it occurred to anyone else that The Rangers could go into admin next season and still win their league by a reasonable margin?

I fully expect the money to run out next season and for then to suffer an insolvency event with subsequent points penalty . it is even possible we see a string of insolvency events but the carcass of the lame beast limps on.
There is a clear road they need to go down but how they get there and how long it takes them is anyone’s guess but it is guaranteed to be THE thing dominating this blog and continuing to retard the structure of our game.

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wottpiPosted on10:59 am - Jun 1, 2013

scapaflow14 says:

Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 10:56


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newtzPosted on11:04 am - Jun 1, 2013

macfurgly says:

Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 01:22

Where now?

By keeping the story alive on blogs like this, Paul McC and other micro blogs ……
By encouraging and giving credance to whistleblowers in exposing theses activities …..

One thing I hung off saying was that such egregious activity prevents the operation of effective markets ……

Google any of the main players in this and see what you get ….. collectively we are having an effect … the landscape is ….very slowly changing …. but it is changing …..

Recent success stories include WikiLeaks …. ICIJ …… on a micro scale Tax Justice Network and Tax Reseach UK, and then on a smaller scale RTC, CtH and corsica1968 … and many others …

A big success story is Richard Murphy(Tax Researc UK) ……

Another is ICIJ …..

The Truth Will Out ……..

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ecobhoyPosted on11:12 am - Jun 1, 2013

I can only assume that Walter’s interview was meant to calm things in general but I am left with the impression he truly will regret this move which has the potential to do more long-term damage to Rangers than just walking away and telling the fans right now not to buy STs.

He has never spoken a truer word than: “I don’t particularly see myself as a long-term chairman, in the sense I would always think the job would be for someone who has far more business acumen than I have”.

He doesn’t seem to realise this is nothing about business acumen but a veritable fight for survival against predators already on the inside track to tear his supposedly beloved Rangers apart. He ignored Bomber’s warning a year ago and backed the flotation and now he is backing the ST sales. As a non Rangers supporter I would never tell a Bear not to buy a season ticket as I believe that is an issue for the Ibrox support. But sometimes emotion has to be tempered with hard financial facts and if Celtic were in the same situation I wouldn’t be buying a ST and at best would pay per game.

Walter’s simplistic statement: “The main priority is just to get everything settled down and to a situation where everyone, first and foremost, is talking about the football team instead of what is happening in the boardroom or off the pitch” is embarrassing. Where the attention of every thinking Bear should be riveted is on the Boardroom because that’s where the biggest dangers to the club lies.

Of course there will be on-field skirmishes in winning SFL2 but the main battlefield is going to be in controlling the boardroom and assembling a large enough bloc of shares to determine the future of the club. If the spivs and share speculators win then Rangers will, once more, sink financially and any resurrection will face the possibility of not owning any of the assets but having to rent a stadium to play on.

Walter, in the understatement of the year, added: “Unfortunately it looks as though there will be some aspects of the previous time that have rolled over into this one, which will maybe continue for a number of years. But we have to try to separate that and make sure everyone gets back to concentrating on what they should really be concentrating on — and that is the football.”

Talk about smoke and mirrors and feed them cake. Now I’m beginning to understand the strategy behind all the new signings which aren’t required to win SFL2 – it’s just a diversion and most definitely not solely about sellings STs.

It’s the PR plan which will be enthusiastically lapped-up by the MSM to divert attention from the real dangers faced by Rangers which will be ignored, as usual, by our intrepid journos. Even Ally has a major role to play as Bears continually complain about his lack of managerial ability and run polls ad nauseum as to whether he should be sacked or not.

Meanwhile the death watch beetles will be busily taking Ibrox apart and carrying off anything of financial value while the Bears remain glued firmly to on-field activities and not the hidden share deals involving unknown overseas investors and the spivs.

Perhaps someone should actually advise Walter that he is no longer a football manager and that his attention shouldn’t be on the football field but on the boardroom and all the other off-field activities where the Rangers survival game is being played out. And I have to say I actually agree with Walter that he won’t be a long-term chairman.

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OldcobrokemyheartbycheatingPosted on11:20 am - Jun 1, 2013

One of life’s great moments earlier reading Phil Mac’s twitter feed. STV Grant just taken apart by what I can only describe as legendary Phil just the facts Jack. My cornflake’s are all over my monitor one of those spurious just laugh immediately no matter what your doing. A lesson for the STV man do some homework before playing with the big boys you lazy journalist.

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paulsatimPosted on11:20 am - Jun 1, 2013

Althetim says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 10:28

they dont do walking away………………except from their debts

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ecobhoyPosted on11:24 am - Jun 1, 2013

wottpi says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 10:57

tonto8on8his8high8horse says:

Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 09:50

So from Walter’s interview and that from Green both see the past issues with CW going on for many years.
Now how have they come to that conclusion.
Someone somewhere must have warned them this is not over?
Presumably it must be the club’s/company’s lawyers who feel that CW has some form of cas that they need to fight.

If not then surely they would be able to advise the board that they are capable of shutting the whole CW thing down tomorrow?

There are some very suspicious posters on this site. And here was me thinking when I read the Rangers announcement to AIM that everything had been cleared-up and there was no further problems on the horizon. I mean the private inquiry by P&M has removed any threat from CW and quite rightly the club states it will robustly resist any legal moves from him.

So I wonder what the biggest Rangers shareholder and the club’s new chairman know about which could cause years of turmoil. Is that not information that should be made known to AIM as I assume that Cenkos as the Rangers Nomad has been officially informed of this potential danger to a publicly listed company.

Some might even think that existing and potential shareholders have a right to know what the problem is, how many years it might last, what the financial implications are for Rangers International FC Plc and what exactly is being done to secure the financial position of the shareholders in the company and in the interim what specific provisions are being made in the accounts to deal with it.

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chipm0nkPosted on11:27 am - Jun 1, 2013

readcelt says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 10:58


Who do you imagine they would be borrowing money from.

Once the money runs out, if it does, there are really three options that I can think of.

1, Sell assets to raise more.

2, Borrow money to pay the bills

3, Stop trading.

Administration would really only be a factor if they borrowed money and couldn’t repay it. Which brings me back to the question, who would they be borrowing it from. Particularly after the creditors were shafted so badly the last time.

Maybe another share issue to raise funds.

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slimshady61Posted on11:46 am - Jun 1, 2013

jonnyod says:
Saturday, June 1, 2013 at 09:43
Pedantic I know J but it was John Keane; there is a prominent Celtic supporter called John Kane and I am sure he wouldn’t want to get the credit when it wasn’t due! John Keane was the man and Fergus paid him marvellous credit this week.

On the debate over McCann, it takes you right back to the early days of Celtic when many including the founder wanted the club to avoid becoming professional. Fortunately the more far-sighted on the board realised that if you want to be charitable, you have to earn the money in the first place to be able to make the donations. Had they not prevailed, today we might have Celtic playing amateur football a la Queens Park but more likely Celtic would just have disappeared.

McCann was in a similar mould to the far-sighted guys ofthe 1890s; by the 1990s, the Kellys and Whites may have been misty-eyed about the heritage in their hands, but frankly they couldn’t run a bath.

The club was hours away from liquidation in March 1994, aided by Gavin Masterton and BoS, who in turn were encouraged from the sidelines by a certain David Murray.

The first priority in 1994/95 was not charity, and it wasn’t even football. It was getting the club on an even keel financially, otherwise in future there would be no football and no charitable giving.
That annoyed the purists but turning round a huge club like Celtic was always going to take time and a 3-4 year period to get back to the top of Scottish football was not unreasonable. The charitable side had to wait until the football side was fixed, because charities are always likely to benefit more on the back of a feelgood factor.

That’s life but it is great to see Celtic doing so many good charitable works these days, here and abroad. Long may it continue.

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