The Last Thing Scottish Football Needs Right Now ..

ByAndrew Smith

The Last Thing Scottish Football Needs Right Now ..

.. is More Secrecy

We all now know Lord Clark’s judgement on Friday has kicked off an arbitration process to solve the case raised by Hearts, Partick and their sleeping partner, Stranraer.
He seemingly had no option and did this because it is the “pre-decided” SFA procedure for football disputes.
Accordingly three qualified persons will be chosen from an existing SFA list and in effect become the judges and jury tasked with coming to a decision on a complex and complicated situation.
Be cogniscant that this is a situation where relegation will have huge financial impact to the three clubs and their members of staff at a time of pandemic related economic hardship.

Real people and real jobs cast aside by what could be classed as myopia and lack of leadership.

And potentially exacerbated by a decision made in secret, in an unreported process, with no avenue to appeal.

Did Hearts and Thistle and Stranraer deserve to be relegated I hear you ask?
Yes so far, and on points per game, but there were enough games left and all three could easily have avoided the drop.
By the same judgement Hearts should already have been awarded the Scottish Cup as they were statistically the remaining club with the best cup record and goal difference!

The three Arbitrators will now hear the SPFL case and the Hearts and Thistle case put forward by their expensive legal teams and then decide.

Simples.

Maybe not.
From press reports the SPFL even tried to block their own members, Hearts and Thistle, getting access to their co –owned SPFL documents but Lord Clark seemingly stopped that.
It seems being aware of the severe time constraints, and maybe also possibly suspecting downstream game-playing, he also offered his and the court’s availability if required.

Let me clarify something that I didn’t know until last week.

Arbitration is not the same as mediation.
Not even close.
From what I’ve read since, mediation would have been better for all concerned but progressing that way that would have taken a less dysfunctional corporate structure across our game.
It could and should have been the best way forward for us all.

If only.

But fair enough we all need a result and arbitration we’ve been told can maybe deliver that in around 10 days.

In the meantime ask yourself if an arbitration decision made and dished out without any kind of public scrutiny or redress is the way to go?

What if deep inside the system there is any kind of unseen bias?
By the way that’s just a question.
I’m not suggesting that there is inherent bias.
Surely no biases in Scottish football exist.

Being positive I can see the advantages of coming to a conclusion in a process that is quicker and less costly to our game than going to the courts but something about the whole thing is wrong.

My instinct says it’s the secrecy.

Most of the people I have spoken with agree.

We all live in Scotland where our government is open to the public and where government committees are on the public record.
The fourth estate is all over everything they do.
Likewise our courts are generally open to the public and to the media to report on what is happening within.

There is nothing in this dispute that should be kept secret from the real stakeholders in the game, the fans.

We all have a stake in the game.

There is nothing healthy about this closed doors charade.

It should all be out in the open.
Any judgement made without the presence and scrutiny of the media and SFM’s very own Easyjambo and John Clark is open to retrospective revisitation ad infinitum and will never bring the fairness and closure we all need.
It is not in any way the formula for the reconciliation that is needed across all 42 clubs.

Football fans don’t always have to agree but we need to know that it is refereed fairly. Arbitration rules laugh at that basic requirement.

How The Hell Did We Get Here?

As I write the countdown to the new season is underway and a sans-Hearts fixture list is imminent.
I have no idea what will happen if the three wise arbitration men decide to block the Hearts, Partick and Stranraer SPFL enforced demotions.
They might indeed.
The majority of fans wouldn’t disagree with them if they did even if it becomes a mess.

Yes that would be a doomsday scenario for all but we’d bounce back.
If it is the right thing to do for our game then a bit of hassle for Neil and Co should not stop it happening.

10 days or so will tell.

Were the Leagues Called Too Soon?

Chick and Tam on the radio certainly, and indignantly think so.
Most fans concur with many of us already watching English football nightly and wondering what if?

I think only four countries in Europe ended their leagues early.

We’ve been told the SPFL came to the decision to trigger payments because of our new TV contract.
Seems plausible enough and to be fair there was great club impecuniosity and huge amounts of uncertainty at the time.
I’ve since also heard that the old broadcast contracts were renegotiated and compensation paid for the lost games as the new Sky deal became the focus and probably the driving force.
Money rules and Sky calls the tune in their 4 old firm games view of our world.

This combined and meant two big decisions were immediately on the horizon.

First Hearts, Thistle and Stranraer were to be relegated.
(“Bye-bye guys, tough luck and take your medicine”, from your erstwhile football family friends, almost certainly avoiding eye contact in the zoom meeting)!

Secondly Brechin City, or another, was spared the play offs and with the pyramid chain broken the top team from the play offs was told to forget their hopes of joining the SPFL.

Outrageous.

Someone at the SFA should have thrown a hissy fit and done something for their 2 disadvantaged members but I don’t think they ever did.
A real insight into how heartless our game can be.

Along the way
We all sat back in amazement as Neil’s “Good Friday Disagreement” evolved when John Nelm’s Dundee’s vote got first lost, then found and then changed over the weekend.
Didn’t smell right then.
Smells even worse now.
Along the way Dundee somehow became the casting vote.
(I hope there are full records of what really happened for the Arbitrators).

At the time, and rumbling still, there was huge criticism of the SPFL board for conflating approval of something or other to the much-needed payments due to the clubs.
(Apologies for the brevity but it all merges. So much was going on and a lot we never heard about too).

Rangers then came in live on radio demanding Neil D and Rod McKenzie to be spanked very hard but never quite being able to tell us why.

Other stuff happened after the vote too.

Maybe it was clever diversionary tactics, maybe something else, but for two or three weeks it was all go in all directions.
We had task forces set up here, there and everywhere.

So many I can’t actually remember their remits and to be honest like so many I can’t quite be bothered now.

It seemed we had the game looking at the genuine change that fans want and even us the independent SFSA were asked to help by Les Gray one of the task force co-chairs.

We did by taking it to our members and to the SFM too, in good faith even though deep down we thought it was all part of a game and said so.

Sadly it was a waste of effort and time moved on but fair play to Neil and the SPFL board.
Fair play because at the 11th hour they tried to get approval from their members to temporarily extend the leagues.

Neil’s attempt to do that wasn’t an actual formal vote.
That never happened.
What was termed by the SPFL as an “Indicative Vote” was heavily defeated.

Several weeks on and 18 of our 42 clubs still won’t even tell us their fans how they voted.
I had already asked Neil Doncaster how clubs voted and he told me it was secret ballot.
So it’s still mostly secret and like all secrets has the inherent ability to fester.

None of us can blame the clubs for voting the way they did.

A couple of weeks ago when trying to analyse the vote I highlighted that Hibs inexplicably voted against an Edinburgh Derby.
Having enjoyed many I still don’t get that.

I’m also on record recently stating that Ross County also voted no and effectively sentenced their two nearest neighbours and friends, ICT and Brora, to significantly less revenue in the next year.
And at the same time their no vote helped stymie the pyramid that was introduced to allow clubs like Ross County of old access the higher leagues.
(I well remember them in the Highland League – and played against them at the time).
I haven’t spoken with Roy MacGregor about his vote but I know that if I was a chairman of a bottom six club I too would have foreseen the approaching tsunamic, post-Covid crunch coming down the tracks. That was the season when the Covid induced “temporary league” of 14 had to be reduced back to 12, meaning 3 clubs get relegated, and 1 goes into a play off position.
4 out of 14!

Ouch! Ouch! Ouch! and ouch!

Not good business for anyone.

Like Roy, I’d have said “Sorry” to ICT and Brora and voted the same as he did. Roy’s fiduciary duty is to his club not to his neighbours.

Roy, I respect your position and all other chairmen too but it should never have come to this in our totally unnecessary football civil war.

And you know after hearing John Collins say on the radio today asking “Where’s the fairness in any of this”? I can’t disagree.

Words Of Wisdom For The 3 Wise Men

Fairness would be my starting point.
We know fans will never all agree about anything because we love our clubs and they will always come first.
But we crave fairness, openness and transparency.
That’s probably the first time I have written the transparency word since Stewart Regan nearly wore it our 8 years ago.

Out message to our Arbitrators is as follows.

The Scottish Fans are the bona fide stakeholders in the game and fund the clubs.

We collectively want and will welcome bigger leagues.*

We want no extra damage to any club from Covid.

We believe that there should be transparency in everything in football.
We abhor and have no trust in closed doors and secrecy.

Please publish your results and allow access to the process along the way.

What would be wrong with that?

What harm could it do?

A significant majority of fans don’t agree with these enforced relegations and would prefer either to finish the season or enlarge the leagues permanently.

And finally fans demand to be listened to because it seems we are the only ones who are able and willing to see the bigger picture for the good of the game.

No Closed Door Festering Secrets in Scottish Football

  • Arbitrators we are happy to share our research with you.

About the author

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327 Comments so far

HomunculusPosted on6:49 pm - Jul 9, 2020


wottpi 9th July 2020 at 17:34

Indeed.

There would just be something wrong in the rest of Scottish football pledging money to one "side" against the other. They would effectively be funding the SPFL as well, however they already are in reality. Any money paid in legal fees by the SPFL comes from the clubs already.

An equal pledge to both sides would at least be more acceptable in my view. Though if I'm honest I see very little uptake as it stands. I think most club boards would not want to be seen to be taking sides, even if they could afford it.

I think it's a non starter, but I can understand them trying. I suppose their argument will be "fund as and you help prevent losing £10m" 

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Cluster OnePosted on10:55 pm - Jul 9, 2020


A bit OT but we were talking the other day about speculation over the years of the new club at ibrox going to the wall and how different things come to light and different people speculate on it happening.
Was looking for something and found this on my way.
1st November 2013
Dave King: administration is distinct possibility at Rangers if shareholder factions can’t reach compromise.
https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/13129788.dave-king-administration-is-distinct-possibility-at-rangers-if-shareholder-factions-cant-reach-compromise/
……….
It is not only celtic bloggers who speculate on it and believe now and again that it could happen.

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John ClarkPosted on11:23 pm - Jul 9, 2020


wottpi 9th July 2020 at 17:34

“I’ve always seen the clubs affected by the resolution and counter petition as being innocent casualties to a poor decision by the SPFL board when other more balanced solutions were surely available”

“”””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””

In 2012, of course, the SPFL Board was involved not in the  making of merely ‘poor ‘or ‘imbalanced’ decisions : they were a signature party  to the creation of  a sporting lie even more monstrous than the lies told to Scottish Football for a decade or so by RFC of 1872.

And not one club ( with the exception of the perennially to be honoured Turnbull Hutton’s Raith Rovers) raised an objection in public ( although I know of one other chairman who deeply felt as Hutton felt). 

That has to be kept in mind.

[Neither did the SMSM – and their offence is even more deserving of contempt because their  acquiescence in ‘official’  untruth spits in the eye of those journalists who report the truth-even if it literally kill them]

 

 

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John ClarkPosted on12:27 am - Jul 10, 2020


Cluster One 9th July 2020 at 22:55

'…It is not only celtic bloggers who speculate .'

"""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""

Not at all OT, Cluster One, and actually quite nostalgically entertaining, retrospectively, when one thinks of the contempt of Court Takeover  Panel charges of more recent times…and the worthlessness of some people in charge of RFC of 1872 or of TRFC of 2012.

And a wee 'two cheeks of the same arse' nod:

"King also stressed that he did not believe that Peter Lawwell, the Celtic chief executive who sits on the PGB, would unduly influence the decision.'

Honest to God!

How it all comes back;

the dirty wee story  of corruption in Scottish Football, that absolves SDM of his cheating, and allows a new creation of a club to go to the money market on the  false claim that it is a much older, quite different club.

What price Sport? What price the financial market?

What price the Financial Conduct Authority?

( from which I have not had a reply to my recent email. Surprise, surprise! broken heart}

 

 

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HomunculusPosted on11:47 am - Jul 10, 2020


As one would have expected Hearts / Partick Thistle have released their own statement.

https://www.heartsfc.co.uk/news/article/joint-club-statement-1-2-3

As a matter of urgency, we would like to clarify our position in relation to the role being played by Dundee United, Raith Rovers and Cove Rangers in our case against the SPFL.

Those clubs were named in the Petition, along with Stranraer, because they are the clubs most likely to be impacted by a decision in our favour. We are not, and have never been, in direct dispute with them.

The SPFL is opposing our Petition and will do so at the forthcoming arbitration.  Dundee United, Raith Rovers and Cove Rangers were not therefore required to litigate or arbitrate against us.  However, they chose to do so. 

For the avoidance of doubt, we accept that was a choice they were fully entitled to make, no doubt having been fully advised of the risks and costs.  We absolutely know and understand that was not a decision to be taken lightly.

This is not about two Clubs, Hearts and Partick Thistle, battling against other member Clubs. This is about these two Clubs battling against the organisation, which is meant to look after all of our interests, and holding them accountable for their prejudicial actions. We would contend that any Club in our position would be taking similar action.

However, encouraging clubs to fund anyone’s costs in this process could create further division. We consider such an approach to be at odds with the fundamental requirement of the SPFL rules that the SPFL and each Club shall behave towards each other with the utmost good faith.  We cannot therefore let that pass without comment.

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HomunculusPosted on12:13 pm - Jul 10, 2020


I can understand why this statement has been released however it is a bit of a reach to say

"We are not, and have never been, in direct dispute with them."

I doubt the other clubs think that, as you are trying to get their promotion reversed.

It is also a it naive to say.

"Dundee United, Raith Rovers and Cove Rangers were not therefore required to litigate or arbitrate against us.  However, they chose to do so."

Of course they did, should they just sit back and let their fate be decided in a process they have no say in. To paraphrase the statement itself

"I would contend that any Club in their position would be taking similar action."

Again, I can fully understand why they would want to release something, in response to yesterday's statement. However that just seems a bit disingenuous to me. 

 

 

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StevieBCPosted on12:24 pm - Jul 10, 2020


Homunculus;

"…This is about these two Clubs battling against the organisation, which is meant to look after all of our interests, and holding them accountable for their prejudicial actions…"

=======

That's just taking the p!ss out of any reasonable, Scottish football supporter – IMHO.

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wottpiPosted on12:49 pm - Jul 10, 2020


Barring not having the financial wherewithall to pay the lawyers,  please name any SPFL club who folks think wouldn't have mounted a challenge to the SPFL if being relegated with 8 games to play and a sporting chance of catching the teams above them.

I would doubt any reasonable supporter of a professional Scottish football club in that position would expect their board to accept such a situation without challenge. Especially knowing the track record of the organisation that created the situation in the first place.

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FinlochPosted on12:53 pm - Jul 10, 2020


This isn’t about Hearts and Thistle versus Dundee Utd, Raith and Cove.

It never was even if some would like it to look that way.

Its about a game that is totally strangleheld by self interest to the point that it is incapable of managing itself in normal times let alone a time of pandemic crisis.

Not for the first time some really dumb decisions have been taken and we are living with the consequences intended and otherwise.

Instead of revisiting them and doing what is right the game is wasting money on finding expensive solutions in courts and quasi courtrooms.

All because our game is bereft of leadership.

 

The slide to civil war was inevitable and foreseen on this site months ago and none of this should be new to any of us.

Arbitration will not bring the closure that Neil and Co seek in the same way that Lord Nimmo Smith is still festering years later.

 

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HomunculusPosted on12:57 pm - Jul 10, 2020


Finloch 10th July 2020 at 12:53

Not for the first time some really dumb decisions have been taken.

Instead of revisiting them the game is wasting money on finding expensive solutions in courts and quasi courtrooms.

All because our game is bereft of leadership.

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

In this instance the leadership tried to get the only possible solution passed, reconstruction.

The clubs, who had the final decision, would not accept it.

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HomunculusPosted on1:07 pm - Jul 10, 2020


wottpi 10th July 2020 at 12:49

As I have said I have no issue with the club trying to protect it's position.

If the roles were reversed however, do you think Hearts would want representation at Court or at the arbitration process.

Of course they are in direct conflict, they are trying to get Dundee United's promotion cancelled. Of course Dundee United want to defend their position. In the spirit of your own question, who wouldn't. 

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StevieBCPosted on1:08 pm - Jul 10, 2020


Theses 2 clubs – along with the other 40 clubs – have the governing bodies they all fully deserve.

Corrupt and incompetent.

It's a bit disingenuous for any club to complain about the competence or prejudices of either the SPFL or SFA today.

The clubs have kept Doncaster in position for 10+ years.

The clubs ALL stood back and watched Petrie become SFA President – and unchallenged too!

I'm not having a specific go at HMFC or PTFC who are doing what's right for them –  but they can't pick and choose when to call out the SPFL.  All 42 clubs are compromised, IMO.

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wottpiPosted on1:37 pm - Jul 10, 2020


Homunculus 10th July 2020 at 13:07

I don't think Hearts and PT have any problem with Dundee Utd, Raith and Cove taking the decisions have to have representation at the CoS and now Arbitration.

As you say Hearts would probably have wanted to say their tuppence worth if they had been in the reverse situation.

However the key point in the Hearts / Partick statement is as follows:

However, encouraging clubs to fund anyone’s costs in this process could create further division. We consider such an approach to be at odds with the fundamental requirement of the SPFL rules that the SPFL and each Club shall behave towards each other with the utmost good faith.  We cannot therefore let that pass without comment.

This should be about Hearts / Partick v the SPFL and its board. End of.

Nothing wrong it saying enough damage has been done already without going into full meltdown.

Remember that the resolution was a conscious decision (apparently the only one)  taken by the SPFL board. Their QC advised there were risks of the matter going to court in the future. The main reason a vote was taken (on their QC's advice) was to try and lessen the impact, in the event of the matter coming to cour,t by attempting to show some form of democratic process.

The group of three clubs are already represented through the SPFL board and the agreed appointments of folks like Doncaster & McKenzie. The SPFL do not really need any further support from the three individual clubs directly involved and then 'financial support' of outliers.

From what was discussed in the CoS I can't see what else the three  clubs (and perhaps other who are minded to contribute to the legal fees)  are going to bring to the table.

Is it perhaps ironic that the three clubs and now possibly others don't seem to trust the SPFL to be able to see their own decisions make it through this process?

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FinlochPosted on3:22 pm - Jul 10, 2020


Homunculus 10th July 2020 at 12:57

Finloch 10th July 2020 at 12:53

Not for the first time some really dumb decisions have been taken.

Instead of revisiting them the game is wasting money on finding expensive solutions in courts and quasi courtrooms.

All because our game is bereft of leadership.

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

In this instance the leadership tried to get the only possible solution passed, reconstruction.

The clubs, who had the final decision, would not accept it.

——————————————————————————————————–

Can't won't and wouldn't disagree but the indicative vote nonsense came at the end of a very tortuous and pantomimical process.

I revert to the bereft leadership issues comment.

Posted missing when most needed.

Still needed.

Still needed desperately.

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wottpiPosted on3:47 pm - Jul 10, 2020


On today's BBC Sportsound Podcast Brian McLaughlin reporting the SPFL board members are, at meetings between clubs, encouraging others to donate to the Dundee Utd, Raith and Cove legal fees.

Of course they are trying to argue that they are making such requests while wearing their club hat, not that of their SPFL board position!!!

Very murky.

Listen in from around 20.00 mins.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/p08kd5km

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easyJamboPosted on3:56 pm - Jul 10, 2020


Finloch 10th July 2020 at 15:22

I revert to the bereft leadership issues comment.

Posted missing when most needed.

Still needed.

Still needed desperately.

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

And so it continues.

I’ve just listened to today’s Sportsound podcast and heard Brian McLaughlin state that he is aware of some SPFL Board members encouraging clubs to contribute to the DU/RR/CR legal funds. Obviously that encouragement comes from those individuals in their capacities with their own clubs, rather than their roles with the governing body.

Good faith?  Hmmmm!

It is a ridiculous and unseemly situation, where the game is so bereft of leadership.  

I honestly couldn’t care less how the arbitration plays out, such is my disillusionment with what has happened. Scottish football is broken and will remain so without radical surgery. Sadly it is unlikely happen because of the self interest and egos involved. 

At least I can look forward to watching some grass roots football once again in the not too distant future.

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FinlochPosted on4:08 pm - Jul 10, 2020


EJ the SS Good Faith sailed long ago and was presumed lost.

 

I think the SPFL should be paying the extra fees for both sides of this fight. 

None of the clubs have done anything wrong.

 

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Mickey EdwardsPosted on4:39 pm - Jul 10, 2020


I can't understand the confusion.

Two clubs going to court to fight a democratic decision made with an overwhelming majority. The two clubs ask the courts to penalise three others who achieved what they probably would have anyway and then say "it's not aimed at you.". Why mention them in the petition then?  To prevent them being disadvantaged the only thing the three can do is to spend money that they cannot afford to ensure the democratic vote is upheld. It's lose-lose for them.

If it isn't a direct attack on the other clubs then why not petition with a request to the courts that leaves no-one disadvantaged.

The petition requested that these three clubs were punished for something outwith their control and then the petitioners squeal when others feel that support is warranted.

Get a grip.

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erniePosted on4:53 pm - Jul 10, 2020


I have to admit I’m struggling with the argument here. I know we have a common dislike for Doncaster and even the SPFL but the contortions evident on here to make a case for Hearts/PT are getting a bit ridiculous when we get to who should say what and who pays for what. Hearts/PT, being two of forty two equal shareholders of the SPFL are taking the SPFL to court and three clubs have been specifically named and advised (?) that they may not get promoted should Hearts/PT win. The SPFL are rebuffing the action, paying for legal representation and seeking to gain any advantage they can get. As are the three teams threatened with demotion from their promotion who are also seeking help to fund legal representation for proceedings they had no part in instigating other than generally voting resolutions as the other 39 also did. They are duty bound And morally correct to vigorously defend the action. 

 

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HomunculusPosted on4:54 pm - Jul 10, 2020


wottpi 10th July 2020 at 13:37

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

You have no faith in the SPFL doing the right thing.

Why should Dundee United.

Sorry but Hearts trying to say this is nothing between them and Dundee United and that Dundee United have no need to spend money on legal representation is just insulting other people's intelligence.

Of course they do, Hearts in my opinion would do exactly the same thing.

"This should be about Hearts / Partick v the SPFL and its board. End of."

Wrong. Fact.

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wottpiPosted on5:17 pm - Jul 10, 2020


Why is it some people are keen to jump in half way through a fight,  as if the start never existed.

The SPFL made a conscious decision to take forward a plan of action that did most harm to three teams when there was still 8 games to be played in the season.

As Tom English says, when you punch someone in the face, don't be surprised when they punch you back.

The resolution was arrived at without any transparency and a vote was rushed through in a cack-handed manner.

As discussed, if the SPFL board were so sure of what they were doing and it was in the rules they would have simply ended the season and told everyone to move on.

They undertook a vote mainly because their QC advice said it would potentially off-set any challenge under the Companies Act to the resolution they were proposing.

Therefore they knew they faced potential challenges to what they were proposing, regardless of the result of any 'democratic' vote.

The SPFL cannot then be surprised when that legal challenge came.  

Its not as if this is somehow unique to Scotland. Teams in France and Belgium have done exactly the same thing in asking for things to be halted and reviewed. Are they somehow spoil sports not worthy of consideration.

At least in the Netherlands the issue  an unfair situation appears to have been recognised and compensation paid out for the consequences of their null & void decision. 

The question is did the SPFL take every step possible to avoid the situation arising from their resolution and could they have handled the matter differently.

Were there alternatives that may have spread the load across all clubs as opposed to having three take a big hit?

This is one of the issues that will be tested in arbitration.

Maybe it will come to light that this was indeed the best and only solution to dealing with unprecedented circumstances brought about by the Covid-19 situation.

However,  it must be tested given the disquiet voiced not only by Hearts and Partick but also the other clubs who, in the clear light of day and with time for reflection on the events of Good Friday,  believed an independent inquiry was needed.

When you have a third of your membership effectively not trusting the board,  something is clearly wrong with an organisation. 

 

 

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erniePosted on5:58 pm - Jul 10, 2020


I’m not defending the SPFL in general terms but there is no logic in conflating Hearts/PTs’ legal action with a desire to reorganise the SPFL constitutionally or in terms of personnel. There exists means to vote through changes. If such a change was voted through by a two thirds majority it would be merely water cooler talk to place the one third who voted otherwise on some sort of civil rights pedestal. Hearts/PT are taking action against the SPFL after losing out on voted resolutions. For all I know they may have a smoking gun that shows it was unconstitutional or illegal so we wait to see but let’s not pretend it’s some moral campaign against the evil organisation to which they belong and have been active members since (and well before of course) it’s inception. It’s not, they are taking action because they lost the vote they wanted. What next? Who will go to court next because they don’t get the outcome that they want in a vote? Will we be foursquare behind them? I won’t. 
 

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Corrupt officialPosted on5:59 pm - Jul 10, 2020


   There appears to be a certain unhappiness from some about clubs asking for a group funding to defend their position, but would the same folk be unhappy if Mr Anderson were to offer to fund it? 

     But that would mean he was funding both sides of the non-argument then, right?. 

Sevco started this "Weaken the SPFL", rammy, but were ridiculed into oblivion with the dossier of farce. Hearts, hurt, but think they can make a better fist of it using Mr Nice guy's money..   

    It's veiled in material so flimsy peas could be spat through it.  Celtic, Aberdeen and Ross County, who didn't want his money, have sussed it…….Probably several others who didn't want it, but needed it, are aware too.   

     Anyone who can't see this sideshow is nothing more than the SFA trying to weaken the SPFL hasn't been paying attention. There has been a power struggle going on long enough FFS. 

    The divisions were called early due to C-19, and the natural consequence of that are promotions and relegations……That's it !……That is all that happened here.

     Scotland is an easy wee place to understand. When the SMSM are trying to get you to think one thing, just think the other…….Then you will be on the good guy's side. (or at least the lesser of two evils) 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hn1VxaMEjRU

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reasonablechapPosted on6:37 pm - Jul 10, 2020


At the premature close of play, no club had been officially relegated or promoted.

Considering the existential context involved, to somehow compare what is being forced on HMFC and PT to what is being awarded to DU/RR and CR is apples and tangerines.

The frequent headline claims of a vote passed by an overwhelming majority are IMO, misleading but generally accepted and used as rational to justify a stance. The whole thing hinged on one vote and it smells to high heaven (pivotal to arbitration).

The rational behind and the surrounding events, before, during and after the Good Friday vote are to be further examined (in a secret arbitration hearing). This is where the SPFL executive have been found badly wanting, at best.

Many clubs refused the Reconstruction option and we are more or less, where you’d expect or was reasonably predictable, even when the SPFL were coming up with their conflated resolution….. That’s what the leadership cooked up for us.

 

Leadership !!  You have to laugh or you would cry.

Why do you think Peter is happy with such leadership and doesn’t want any Independent Inquiry into the SPFL ?

Back in the swinging sixties, Sandie Shaw made a few bob with her chart topping song, “Puppet on a String”….. Neil ‘Vindicated’ Doncaster made 388,000 pounds sterling for 12 months of apparently doing what he is told by member club(s).

The establishment PLC dominates Scottish fitbaw in more ways than one.

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StevieBCPosted on6:52 pm - Jul 10, 2020


WRT Boris Johnson's recent finger pointing at the care homes…

It seems that a lot of people are not too impressed with Johnson's handling of the pandemic, and there are further claims of opportunism and corruption / cronyism.

Yet, perhaps painfully aware of the increasing awareness amongst the population, he shamelessly pointed the finger elsewhere: a pathetic deflection, a squirrel, if you like.

Rather than self-reflect, and acknowledge your wrongdoings you simply blame others.

It's rookie level PR management.

And risible.  crying

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Cluster OnePosted on6:57 pm - Jul 10, 2020


wottpi 10th July 2020 at 17:17
When you have a third of your membership effectively not trusting the board, something is clearly wrong with an organisation.
……………
The members would have known since 2012 not to trust the board, some would have known before that. But all were happy to go along with the board as long as their own boat was not rocked. When Trust dies,mistrust blossoms.That is what we have been left with in scottish football.

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reasonablechapPosted on7:22 pm - Jul 10, 2020


The economic imperative dominates decision-making and for decades has trumped sporting integrity. Those with the most money tend to lobby and influence power, so as to make more money and get ever more influence/power….

The balance between business and sport gets more perverse as the years go by…It’s PLC first, football club second.

It goes back to the 80’s and Thatcher introducing neoliberal economics, which has become a rambling repeat tornado that consumes most of what is in it’s path and sends it upwards.

In the 80’s, Aberdeen and Dundee Utd won various League Championships, then sharing game revenue changed to home clubs keeping home gates.

Little by little (boiling a frog), the distribution of wealth has changed dramatically in society over 4 decades. No different in football.

If you really want to address the fundamentals, first it’s radical political/economic change that is needed. Then for that to filter down.

However, it’s a very big ask. 

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HomunculusPosted on8:49 pm - Jul 10, 2020


Cluster One 10th July 2020 at 18:57

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

Indeed, not trusting the SFA in particular is hardly new. They aptly demonstrated that they were not trustworthy years ago. 

However let's remember, play the ball not the man. In this instance the SPFL, but also bear in mind that the 42 member clubs are the SPFL, not the executive board. If the clubs don't agree with what they do then they should get rid of them. They are elected members or employees. 

In relation to the vote to finalise the league, leading the the cessation of the three lower divisions, then the consultation with regards finalising the top division, then lobbying for reconstruction the SPFL have done things for the best, as supported by the majority of the member clubs (on a vote).

The one they lost (not even going to a vote), reconstruction, is down to the members. Some of whom said they would never support it if it was a temporary measure. 

https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/spfl-reconstruction-lifeline-neil-doncaster-22172720

In a letter to clubs the chief executive indicated "there is no reasonable prospect of clubs approving a temporary reconstruction solution".

However, the SPFL chief executive said the consultation process had proved "there is sufficient support for a permanent 14-10-10-10 Divisional structure to merit this second stage of consultation".

That would see Hearts spared relegation from the Premiership, with Inverness joining them and Dundee United in the top flight for next season.

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

I know this is getting boring, but reconstruction was the only thing to prevent where we are, the SPFL board tried to get it passed and the clubs rejected it.

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John ClarkPosted on12:12 am - Jul 11, 2020


In my inbox earlier this evening, for any interest anyone may have,

"Lausanne, 10 July 2020 – The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) will announce the decision taken in the arbitration procedure between Manchester City Football Club and the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) on Monday, 13 July 2020. A media release will be published on the CAS website (www.tas-cas.org) at 10:30am"

This refers, I think, to this case

[City were handed a two-season Champions League ban and ordered to pay a €30million fine after being found guilty of breaches of Financial Fair Play (FFP) regulations and UEFA Club Licencing rules by the governing body's Club Financial Control Body (CFCB).]

https://www.msn.com/en-gb/sport/football/cas-release-statement-as-man-city-vs-uefa-hearing-ends/ar-BB15iCC6

It's useful to keep in mind that the 'Arbitration Tribunal' which will decide on the HoM/PT petition is every bit as focussed on Law as any Court. 

As eJ explained a wee while ago, this kind of 'Arbitration' has nothing to do with 'mediation' or guys in the middle trying to get other guys to come to agreement!

The Tribunal will have to decide whether or not the Board of the SPFL were in breach of the Companies Act 2006 , and might well have to decide whether the SFA Article 99 is itself unlawful in that  it purports to have the right to deny the right of access to the Courts without its permission,  and threatens clubs who dare to go to Court without permission  with unconscionably severe penalties . 

In the wider context , that second point is of great public interest . Should society allow a citizen or a business  to sign away his or its rights of  access to the Courts under threat of severe punishment from the party with whom he is in legal dispute if he or it dares do so without the permission of that party?

( and that makes me think of things like the 5-Way Agreement.

How valid and binding in Law is a secret agreement that a new football club should be treated by the SFA and SPL and marketed in every respect except in respect of  tax and other debts as being the identical football club that went into Liquidation? )

 

 

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Cluster OnePosted on5:36 pm - Jul 11, 2020


My instinct says it’s the secrecy.

Most of the people I have spoken with agree.

We all live in Scotland where our government is open to the public and where government committees are on the public record.
The fourth estate is all over everything they do.
Likewise our courts are generally open to the public and to the media to report on what is happening within.

There is nothing in this dispute that should be kept secret from the real stakeholders in the game, the fans.
No Closed Door Festering Secrets in Scottish Football
………………
Reading again the blog above reminded me that the whole scottish football structure is built on secrets.
The secret 5 way agreement.
The charles Green Craig whyte investigation remains secret.
Undisclosed transfer fees, kept a secret.
SFA chiefs’ in secret gambling ban for addict players in new move to tackle epidemic.
Football agents who make secret side deals with clubs without the players’ knowledge risk losing all their profits and any agency fees paid, London’s Court of Appeal ruled yesterday.
Rangers controversy: Club accused of misleading SFA on secret deals 2 March 2012.
Refs Crisis: SFA and rebels hold secret last ditch talks

THE SFA were locked in crisis talks with Scotland’s rebel refs last night after their plan to bring in European strike breakers was scuppered.
Scottish clubs in talks over a secret document proposing a radical revamp of the SFA by the 2020/21 season.20 Feb 2018.
Refs Crisis: SFA and rebels hold secret last ditch talks .
The discovery that a dossier of two-year’s of statistics on sectarianism at football matches would not be made public was revealed at the weekend by Mr McArthur and the anti-sectarianism charity Nil By Mouth.
SFA boss Stewart Regan ordered secret briefings for Rangers owner Charles Green.

So many secrets, that if half of them ever came out, how could you ever start again.

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Cluster OnePosted on6:17 pm - Jul 11, 2020


Forgot about this one.
Campbell Ogilvie.
That is a matter between myself and the trust Dec 4, 2012

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John ClarkPosted on9:09 pm - Jul 11, 2020


Cluster One 11th July 2020 at 18:17

'..Forgot about this one…'

"""""""""""""""""""

Don't worry about it, Cluster One: I'm sure he won't be unhappy to be forgotten about!

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Jingso.JimsiePosted on11:44 am - Jul 12, 2020


From Mr. Smith's blog:

'…We all live in Scotland where our government is open to the public and where government committees are on the public record.
The fourth estate is all over everything they do…'

I find that naivety disconcerting.

I won't write any more as I fear that becoming too 'political' would lead to the 'ban-hammer' being utilised. 

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John ClarkPosted on1:29 pm - Jul 12, 2020


Jingso.Jimsie 12th July 2020 at 11:44

From Mr. Smith's blog:

'…We all live in Scotland where our government is open to the public and where government committees are on the public record.
The fourth estate is all over everything they do…'

I find that naivety disconcerting.

""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""

To be fair, though, there has never been a time when the whole of the SMSM has ben united as one   in letting an issue as disgusting as the cheating of SDM's RFC cheating and the disgraceful abandonment of Sporting Integrity by the Football Authorities go so free of hard investigation and reporting. 

It was as though the liquidation of RFC of 1872 had not happened once they got wind ( as they certainly must have)of the certainty that the SFA/SPL and SFL would accommodate CG to the absurd extent of allowing a brand new club to claim to be RFC.

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gunnerbPosted on5:57 pm - Jul 12, 2020


Ken it’s the ‘Scottish’ football monitor but I feel the passing of a football great should not go unrecognised .I remember the euphoria of Italia 90 and USA 94.He was a member of a great Leeds team of the late sixties and early seventies and I had the pleasure of watching that team on many an occassion. He was as straightforward in real life as his teams were on the park.They played to their strengths and he once commented that his teams actually pioneered the ‘pressing’ game.He is loved and revered in Ireland as a man who understood the national pysche ( hardly surprising given his upbringing in the North East of England).He championed the miners strike when his more illustrious brother courted the establishment.He was a genuine man of the people and the epithet when we will see his like again is justly fitting..even though he did win the world cup in 1966. Rest easy Wor Jack.

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Big PinkPosted on6:29 pm - Jul 12, 2020


Gunnerb
Big Jack epitomised all that is good in football. Special family too. Jack, his brother Bobby, and uncle Jackie (Milburn), are all footballing legends and great role models.
A sad loss to football and our life in general

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Cluster OnePosted on10:13 pm - Jul 12, 2020


Big Pink 12th July 2020 at 18:29
……….
The kind of Guy you could listen too all day talking about football. Should have been on the TV doing more football Analysis after games. And you look at what we get in Scotland.

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stifflersmomPosted on11:48 pm - Jul 12, 2020


As an aside.

Q. How do you spend £250,000 on the restoration or alteration of a building (or a retail premises) without having to consult with the local authorities:

'The Rangers Megastore at Ibrox is set to undergo a £250k transformation as part of the club's new partnership with Castore'. (Daily Record – 17th May 2020)

I've had a cursory glance on Glasgow City Council's Planning and Building Warrant Applications (online) and can't find any such application for such an alteration; however, I'll happily stand corrected.

Unlike the MSSM, as to question where the money is being spent, this intrigues me. One quarter of a million pounds, spent in the midst of a fiscally crippling pandemic – and not one soul bothers to research nor query it. After all, an application to erect a 'freestanding, revolving screen' outside Celtic Park was picked up immediately upon application. 

I'll move on and digress…..

On 1st July, within a matter of hours (22:56hrs) of Sports Direct announcing an exclusive agreement to sell the new Castore kit, Gary Ralston (Daily Record)  released a piece denouncing Ashley's involvement. It's still availabe should you wish.

As I read through the article I became aware of it's repetitious rhetoric. A 500 word article denouncing 'the deal' contained 19 references to 'Rangers'. This reminded me of Trump. eg:

One of the primary ways in which Trump persuades his audience is through repetition. 

By comparison, the MSSM refer to Celtic in most headlines as 'The Hoops'. Conversely, they stick to 'Rangers' in every circumstance. 

It's true. I've done the math. It's a tactic.

But then, I could be paranoid!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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shugPosted on12:07 am - Jul 13, 2020


stifflersmom 12th July 2020 at 23:48

As an aside.

Q. How do you spend £250,000 on the restoration or alteration of a building (or a retail premises) without having to consult with the local authorities:

'The Rangers Megastore at Ibrox is set to undergo a £250k transformation as part of the club's new partnership with Castore'. (Daily Record – 17th May 2020)

I've had a cursory glance on Glasgow City Council's Planning and Building Warrant Applications (online) and can't find any such application for such an alteration; however, I'll happily stand corrected.

Unlike the MSSM, as to question where the money is being spent, this intrigues me. One quarter of a million pounds, spent in the midst of a fiscally crippling pandemic – and not one soul bothers to research nor query it. After all, an application to erect a 'freestanding, revolving screen' outside Celtic Park was picked up immediately upon application. 

I'll move on and digress…..

On 1st July, within a matter of hours (22:56hrs) of Sports Direct announcing an exclusive agreement to sell the new Castore kit, Gary Ralston (Daily Record)  released a piece denouncing Ashley's involvement. It's still availabe should you wish.

As I read through the article I became aware of it's repetitious rhetoric. A 500 word article denouncing 'the deal' contained 19 references to 'Rangers'. This reminded me of Trump. eg:

One of the primary ways in which Trump persuades his audience is through repetition. 

By comparison, the MSSM refer to Celtic in most headlines as 'The Hoops'. Conversely, they stick to 'Rangers' in every circumstance. 

It's true. I've done the math. It's a tactic.

But then, I could be paranoid!

 

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

 

It doesn't make you wrong though.

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John ClarkPosted on12:31 am - Jul 13, 2020


stifflersmom 12th July 2020 at 23:48

'.One of the primary ways in which Trump persuades his audience is through repetition. '

""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""

He reminds us of Adolph, and his evil little propagandist, Goebbels: whose mantra was 'make the lie big enough and repeat it often enough, and people will believe it, no matter how absurd.'

On an infinitely  lesser scale of course [ there are no mass murderers on the boards of football governance] we do, really, have to remember that there are bad evil sods out there and that those of them who manage to control/subvert the 'Media' can metaphorically  get away with mass murder!

There are liars out there in Scottish football 'Governance'

And in the SMSM

 

 

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StevieBCPosted on12:53 am - Jul 13, 2020


stifflersmom 12th July 2020 at 23:48

As an aside.

Q. How do you spend £250,000 on the restoration or alteration of a building (or a retail premises) without having to consult with the local authorities:

==========

£250K does buy you a lot of orange paint…?  enlightened

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stifflersmomPosted on1:05 am - Jul 13, 2020


For context. Journalism, political piece or shame?

By Gary Ralston@Daily Record. (Rangers International Football Club Shareholder).

Rangers blast back at Sports Direct kit claim as jaw-dropping 50k sales figure nears.

The sportswear company claimed in a social media post that they would be selling the club's new Castore kit exclusively.

Rangers are on course to sell more than 50,000 Castore shirts as they denied any double dealing with Sports Direct.

The Ibrox club are furious after Mike Ashley’s company claimed they had an ‘exclusive’ agreement to sell their new look kit from August 1.

Rangers revealed they will open their new look retail store at Ibrox Stadium on the same day, effectively cutting across Ashley’s sales pitch.

Rangers released a statement on Wednesday night putting the controversial sportswear tycoon in his place over claims to his Castore links.

It came at the end of a day in which first day sales of replica shirts were heading for more than 40,000.

Rangers announced their new kit deal with Castore, worth a reported £25 million, with the fledgling sportswear company in May.

It was founded five years ago by brothers Tom and Phil Beahon and has since won financial backing from a string of high profile investors, including Andy Murray.

Disquiet among Rangers fans was raised by a social media post in which Sports Direct claimed they would be selling shirts ‘exclusively’ in their stores from August 1.

A Rangers statement said: “Following today’s unveiling of the 2020/21 home jersey, Rangers continues to look forward to their long term exclusive partnership with Castore, which, for the avoidance of doubt, is a direct agreement between those two companies with no other persons party to the deal.

“As previously stated, it offers a fresh start for the club and a chance to purchase high quality clothing and other products that directly benefit Rangers.

“As is common practice in teamwear retail, Castore will form a number of wholesale supply arrangements with high street retailers in the UK and overseas because that is key to the global aspirations of both Castore and Rangers but the purpose of these arrangements will always be to maximise the availability and sales channels for Rangers products.

Rangers exclusive partnership with Castore ensures that Rangers always directly benefits with a royalty from the sale of all of the Rangers products manufactured, distributed and retailed by Castore. This includes all products distributed by Castore to high street retailers.”

The Rangers megastore will be renamed and rebranded early next month after Castore agreed to fund a £250,000 refit.

The statement added: “Rangers and Castore are delighted to confirm the new Ibrox retail store will officially open on August 1, which will be operated by Castore as the club’s official retail partner.

“It complemented with a number of other key retail sites in Glasgow and further afield, now identified by Castore and Rangers and close to agreement.

“The Ibrox retail store will undergo a £250,000 renovation and become a key venue for all Rangers supporters and on match days will be supported with further pop up stores within the stadium.”

The Beahon brothers have stressed previously they have no business relationship with Sports Direct or Ashley, whose company have been subject to boycotts by Ibrox fans for punitive retail contracts.

Castore revealed recently that sales had undergone a significant uplift, despite the Covid-19 crisis, after they announced their formal agreement with Rangers.

One Ibrox insider said: “Up to 50,000 shirts were made available on the first day and many sizes have already sold out.

“It’s an amazing response from supporters and orders are expected to continue at great volume in the coming days.”

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Corrupt officialPosted on1:39 am - Jul 13, 2020


stifflersmom 12th July 2020 at 23:48

As an aside.

Q. How do you spend £250,000 on the restoration or alteration of a building

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

   Give the contract to a pal?.

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reasonablechapPosted on8:02 am - Jul 13, 2020


Unsurprising to see the intrepid investigative research into Rangers has now reached the level of going after journalists for repeatedly calling a football team by it’s name, leading onto a comparison with the Nazi’s. 

At least the the irony of JC talking about repetition, provides a little comedy for a Monday morning.

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reasonablechapPosted on8:34 am - Jul 13, 2020


If I recall correctly, the SPFL will hold their AGM a week from today, on the 20th.

Seems as if this might actually clash with the arbitration process. The SPFL executive would idealy want a positive result in the bag before the 20th. Can they wander down the 6th floor and ask the SFA to expedite the process?

Another more straightforward question.
Do you think a motion should be put forward to sack Doncaster ?

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erniePosted on9:03 am - Jul 13, 2020


A motion to sack Doncaster?  Why not? I’m sure that any of the 42 shareholders could put together a motion with valid backup (as opposed to a toys out of the pram type dossier) get the support required and get the motion tabled for a vote all as per constitutional rights they’ve all signed up to.

 

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paraniodbyexperiencePosted on10:07 am - Jul 13, 2020


The people are out in force .

Reminds me of an old saying.

There are none so thick as those that will not see….or something like that.

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Jingso.JimsiePosted on11:00 am - Jul 13, 2020


I’ve just been on the SFA site to look for information on the Arbitration Tribunal that is required to be set up, as per Lord Clark’s judgement on 03.07.20, for the HoMFC/PTFC vs. DUFC/RRFC/CRFC/SPFL acronym fustercluck.

Surprise, surprise: there’s not been a word about it since 06.07.20, a week ago. Wasn’t time of the essence in this matter? The season starts in nineteen days. 

::

In other news, CAS overturns Man City’s two year European ban & reduces the fine to 10m Euros…

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shugPosted on12:41 pm - Jul 13, 2020


Unsurprising to see more urine being spouted this morning.

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John ClarkPosted on12:54 pm - Jul 13, 2020


reasonablechap 13th July 2020 at 08:02

"..going after journalists for repeatedly calling a football team by it’s name, leading onto a comparison with the Nazi’s. '

""""""""""""""""""""""""

It is necessary for honest folk to 'go after journalists and others who  repeat the fiction that TRFC is RFC of 1872 as often as they repeat and propagandise that fiction.

And it is vastly amusing to see how they cannot as it were look honest folk in the eye, and try to explain why they think that somehow RFC of 1872 was not liquidated or how a club newly created in 2012 can be entitled to claim titles and honours for competitions that were gained by a now defunct 140 year old club and to market themselves as being so entitled!

Journalists are not necessarily stupid, unintelligent men and women. The fact that they deliberately choose to propagate an untruth is unforgiveable. Those of them who are stupid may not be culpable (but should lose their jobs as being useless tossers)

Those who are not stupid are something else entirely :betrayers (in the cause of a rotten football club or two!) of journalistic integrity and of those brave journalists whom they have seen dying in the cause of truth.

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StevieBCPosted on1:32 pm - Jul 13, 2020


Absolutely, JC!

And justice will prevail.

When these Scottish papers have closed their doors for the final time,

will these 'ex-journalists' STILL insist that Rangers FC didn't die?

Probably not, if they're not getting paid for it…

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wottpiPosted on1:34 pm - Jul 13, 2020


A penultimate post.

As a recap, the issues involved in the upcoming arbitration are that the SPFL believe they were required to conflate the distribution of remaining prize monies with final league positions and thus a resolution was put forward to deal with this unprecedented situation.

It would appear that to reach that stage the following options were considered

Voiding the Season – Rejected because no basis on how to split monies to club. Issues regards nominating clubs for Euro competition. Potential for refunds being requested both from SPFL and individual clubs for an unfinished season. Unfair to all clubs. (All that being said the Dutch seem to have managed some of these issues by nominating next season Euro representatives and paying compensation to those missing out on promotion of Euro slots)

Awarding 1-1 draws for remaining games – Rejected as not all teams had played same number of games and therefore the process is entirely arbitrary. (And by implication unfair.)

Using Modelling to determine results of remaining games – Rejected as it would be roundly criticized by Clubs, media and fans. (The implication being that you cannot accurately predict the outcome of a sporting competition as it is what happens on the park that matters).

Rewind season to point where all teams had played same number of games – Rejected as being unfair as games that had been played would be disregarded. Therefore, advantageous to some but detrimental to others.(In other words unfair)

Making current league tables final. – SPFL noted the Highland League declared Brora champions but due to no real issue with distributing fee payments and having no relegation, this limited the unfairness produced from adopting this methodology. Specific mention of this option being unfair to Rangers and St Johnstone as they had played one less game than others in the Premiership.

Points per Game – Advantage is that every game played has mattered in some way. Clubs disadvantaged (other than those being relegated) = Hibs and St Johnstone swap a place (around £130k), Dunfermline and Arbroath around (£27k) swap a place. SPFL believe this is the fairest method of calling the league. However, in the discussion there was no specific mention of the unusual situation of 3 clubs being relegated with 8 games to play.

As I understand it the Hearts /Partick argument is that member clubs were not given all the required information to make informed decisions on the resolution. One particular strand is that there was no need to conflate the distribution of monies with final league positions. I believe it is being argued that you could have distributed monies via advance payments or the likes.

The implication being that, once you have resolved the prize money matter, the SPFL could have separately considered the best way to resolve final positions and conflate that with how best to proceed in finding a solution where there was no excessive harm done and that in the future (such as via reconstruction) at least promotions and relegation would be resolved through sporting endeavour.

That would have also given time to fully consider matters, such as the issues surrounding TV contracts, what were all the options for trying to play out the season and/or the timescales were for re-starting the new season etc.

In the overall process to date, how to deal with the fall out from the resolution , i.e. league reconstruction, was only offered as something that was going to be looked at, if and once the resolution was passed. (The implication here being that either directly from the SPFL board or through requests from some teams the issue of ‘unfairness’ was identified and highlighted well before the Good Friday Vote and the meetings beforehand)

The option chosen for the resolution resulted in three clubs being disadvantaged by being relegated with 8/9 games to play. Clubs up the top of divisions and in line for play off spots were also denied the possibility of playing for promotion while those down the bottom avoided the possibility of relegation.

While it is being recognised there are other clubs who are being disadvantaged, relegation with 8/9 games to play is claimed, by the petitioners,  to be excessively unfair and the vote by the majority to do so was prejudicial to the minority three.

The further strand of the Hearts / Partick petition is simply that the Dundee Vote should have stood and the and as such the resolution failed on 10 April 2020.

I have no idea how this will go.

I think the petitioners have a better shot at discrediting the whole process that arrived at the resolution and the handling of the vote.

That being said the SPFL may well be on solid ground for a range of issues that are not, as yet, in the public domain. The disclosure of documents, as requested by the petitioners, will hopefully help resolve that one way or another

I’m not overly convinced the Dundee vote argument will hold, given the 28 day rule. However, the Arbitration panel may take a bigger picture view of how that particular piece of the jigsaw fits into the whole debacle given the supposed urgency to move matters along.

If the Resolution stands then I think it is best to acknowledge that it is game over and move on from that particular episode.

However, if the petitioners get any kind of result and/or the published decision is found to be overly critical of the SPFL processes ( e.g. poor but not unlawful) then we may yet see some pressure from within the game to have the manner in which the SPFL operates reviewed.

If there is a major victory for the petitioners then, as the opposite way that with prize money in the bank teams weren’t going to be overly focused on reconstruction or other solutions, the request for no promotion or relegation or the potential for hefty compensation then will focus a lot of minds.

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reasonablechapPosted on4:54 pm - Jul 13, 2020


As the blog post mentioned, the biggest drawback about the arbitration process is the lack of transparency.

I mentioned earlier today that the AGM of the SPFL is a week today. If a motion was put forward to send the Teflon Don(caster) on his way, could something that came out at the arbitration hearing be used against him or even discussed at the AGM?

 

I won't reply directly to the individual posts about going after journalists and others who dare to call a football team by it's name as I'm sure the posters will be busy writing to so many people and organisations. That said, it'd be interesting to know if Peter Lawwell was one of those who didn't reply and how JC classified him (using his own chosen options) "useless tosser" or "betrayerkiss

  

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bect67Posted on7:45 pm - Jul 13, 2020


I have been wondering why RC has such a problem with Peter Lawell, and I think I may have indirectly found (at least part of ) the answer here:-

“Live rent free in one’s head”…

Of a person – to be a source of antipathy or exasperation to one to the extent of  becoming a continual subject of agitated thoughts.

Best treatment for this manifestation of APD ?

Let go … and let Peter (do his own thing).

He disnae know you exist.

 

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HomunculusPosted on9:11 pm - Jul 13, 2020


Can I just clear something up here, does this arbitration actually have anything to do with the SFA, other than the fact that their rules state that in situations such as this the arbitration process is the route to go, rather than Court.

Hence the Judge stating that he would not be dealing with this, that it should go to arbitration.

Is the process now that both sides chose one arbitrator, those two then pick a third to be chairman and the process is carried out. Those arbitrators cannot just be anyone the parties want, they have to be qualified to do the job. 

So unlike the Nimmo Smith farce, the SFA will not be controlling proceedings and setting the agenda. The parties will put their respective cases to the arbitration panel, who will rule on the petition. 

Have I got any or all of that wrong. 

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paddy malarkeyPosted on9:30 pm - Jul 13, 2020


reasonablechap 13th July 2020 at 16:54

Come now , don't be hiding your light under a bushel – you know if PL replied or not , don't you ? You are forever telling us how and what Peter Lawell thinks ,and how he organises events to benefit his club to the detriment of all others . Or is it all just your opinion masquerading as fact ? (again ?).

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John ClarkPosted on9:32 pm - Jul 13, 2020


Homunculus 13th July 2020 at 21:11

‘.Have I got any or all of that wrong. ‘

“”””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””

No, I think you are spot on. 

I think, though, that while arbitrators chosen must be qualified for the task, neither party is obliged to choose from the list of qualified persons that the SFA has. Each party is free to choose someone not on that list (provided that the person is appropriately qualified.) and the two reps chosen are free to agree on the third member, again not obliged to draw from the SFA list.

I think the Scottish Arbitration Rules in the schedule to the Arbitration (Scotland) Act 2010 trump anything the SFA may sy or suggest about using people on their list. 

So, overall, the Arbitration Panel is not under the SFA’s control.

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HomunculusPosted on9:39 pm - Jul 13, 2020


John Clark 13th July 2020 at 21:32

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

Thanks, so nothing like the "independent process" set up by the SFA and chaired by LNS. With them setting the agenda and picking who ruled on it, and indeed what "witnesses" were available to that panel.

I wouldn't imagine the petitioners would want to pick anyone from a list of candidates held by the SFA under the circumstances. 

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paddy malarkeyPosted on10:09 pm - Jul 13, 2020


Homunculus 13th July 2020 at 21:11

I thought that the two parties chose , from an approved list , one person each to advance their case . These two then appoint an arbitrator from the same list to hear their respective cases and to give a binding decision . Same boat as you , though .

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John ClarkPosted on10:09 pm - Jul 13, 2020


My post of 21.32 above refers.

I meant to say that while SFA Article 99 purports to ‘disapply’ some of the Scottish Arbitration rules , it certainly does not require that the Tribunal Chair be selected from the SFA list.

The question of whether the parties can choose their own rep from qualified people who are not on the ‘list’ is maybe less easily answered, and I may have got that wrong.

But given that anyone who has been approached by the SFA and asked to join their list is by definition selected by the SFA who
will pay them is clearly compromised by the mere fact that their appointment is being made by the body that will pay them for their efforts!

In my view, that would be a very unsatisfactory and unacceptable set of circumstances that would render the impartiality and objectivity of a tribunal questionable. 

 

 

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Cluster OnePosted on10:32 pm - Jul 13, 2020


stifflersmom 13th July 2020 at 01:05

For context. Journalism, political piece or shame?

By Gary Ralston@Daily Record. (Rangers International Football Club Shareholder).
………………
Do you have a link to this article?
……
The sportswear company claimed in a social media post that they would be selling the club’s new Castore kit exclusively.

Rangers are on course to sell more than 50,000 Castore shirts as they denied any double dealing with Sports Direct.

Rangers released a statement on Wednesday night putting the controversial sportswear tycoon in his place over claims to his Castore links.

Disquiet among Rangers fans was raised by a social media post in which Sports Direct claimed they would be selling shirts ‘exclusively’ in their stores from August 1.

The Beahon brothers have stressed previously they have no business relationship with Sports Direct or Ashley, whose company have been subject to boycotts by Ibrox fans for punitive retail contracts.
…………..
Let me see if i get this right.
Ashley has said he will be selling the ibrox kit.
The ibrox club denied any double dealing with Sports Direct.
The Beahon brothers have stressed previously they have no business relationship with Sports Direct or Ashley,
…If Ashley starts selling ibrox kits on Aug 1, Just who has gave Ashley the go ahead to sell kits, if the ibrox club have denied any double dealing with Sports Direct.And The Beahon brothers have stressed previously they have no business relationship with Sports Direct or Ashley,
If Ashley starts selling strips, someone has to have signed an agreement with him.

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Cluster OnePosted on10:38 pm - Jul 13, 2020


StevieBC 13th July 2020 at 13:32

Absolutely, JC!

And justice will prevail.

When these Scottish papers have closed their doors for the final time,

will these ‘ex-journalists’ STILL insist that Rangers FC didn’t die?

Probably not, if they’re not getting paid for it…
…………….
will these ‘ex-journalists’ STILL insist that their paper did not die if they close their doors for the final time?

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John ClarkPosted on11:17 pm - Jul 13, 2020


Cluster One 13th July 2020 at 22:38

'..will these ‘ex-journalists’ STILL insist that their paper did not die if they close their doors for the final time?'

""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""

On the same general point, Cluster One, I think it was announced a day or two ago that the regions of the BBC ( Wales, N.I. and Scotland) are to make together something like 450 redundancies. Scotland's share of that is probably larger than the other two combined. 

One can only hope that the number of Liquidation deniers who are presently given 'propagandising 'time on BBC Scotland and BBC radio Scotland sports programmes will be reduced more extensively than in other areas of the BBC,  and that that number will include some of the editorial and managerial staff who for eight years have shut down discussion of the 'Big Lie'. 

They will get no sympathy from me. 

 

 

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stifflersmomPosted on11:32 pm - Jul 13, 2020


RC – 13/07 – 08:02

Unsurprising to see the intrepid investigative research into Rangers has now reached the level of going after journalists for repeatedly calling a football team by it’s name….

Naw. You’ve got it the wrong way round. The journalists are supposed to ‘investigate’ and report. 

I ‘picked’ on Ralston’s piece becasue it stank. It was a press release, akin to something dictated over the phone and hurriedly scribbled and remoulded – in the sense of a tyre being given a new tread.

Read it again, if necessary, read it very slowly. At no point does the article consider whether there is any truth in the claim that SD has exclusive rights to sell the jersey. 

In the grand old scheme of things his recycled press release barely registers in comparison to some of the pish he’s pushed – but I don’t mean to single him out. He done a gallant job of singling himself out, albeit aided and abetted.

But while I’m here. A review of Ralston’s last 44 DR articles, 23 of his headlines contain the word ‘Rangers’. Contrast that with 2, of those same 44 articles, with stated references to Celtic.

If you can point me to one sentence or reference within his ‘press release’ questioning whether there was (is) any truth in the SD claim they had exclusive rights to sell the Castore jersey – I’ll happily concede.

Like a blind man looking in a black room for a black cat, it just isn’t there.

 

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stifflersmomPosted on11:58 pm - Jul 13, 2020


Cluster One 13th July 2020 at 22:32

Here's the link Cluster One: (you may have to 'cut n paste')

https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/rangers-blast-back-sports-direct-22286713

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John ClarkPosted on12:03 am - Jul 14, 2020


stifflersmom 13th July 2020 at 23:32

'.I 'picked' on Ralston's piece becasue it stank. It was a press release, akin to something dictated over the phone and hurriedly scribbled and remoulded – in the sense of a tyre being given a new tread.'

""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""

Question: If I am a journalist, and get handed a 'press release' from any business's PR person, do I get paid by my newspaper per column inch of that 'press release'  that I manage get into print in the newspaper as well as by the PR person's business? 

In recent years the concept of the 'advertorial' has emerged.

You know the kind of thing: a newspaper report, written exactly in the style of a pukka newspaper factual report but which has the word , in tiny wee print, 'advertorial' somewhere on the page?

Hugely expressive of the lying, cheating nature of a 'Press' that is but a tool of deception happily resorted to by those who would deceive us by using the 'power of the Press' to 'authenticate' their message.

In so many ways  have we to be distrustful of our newspapers generally, and of our 'sports' reporting by those newspapers!

 

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stifflersmomPosted on1:14 am - Jul 14, 2020


John Clark 14th July 2020 at 00:03

Question: If I am a journalist, and get handed a 'press release' from any business's PR person, do I get paid by my newspaper per column inch of that 'press release'  that I manage get into print in the newspaper as well as by the PR person's business?

Well considered JC. I'm mindful that your question was rhetorical, but here's my opinion. 

Nowadays it's difficult to monetize a story, mainly because there's never much of a story nor 'exclusive' to be had. The tinternet put paid to that. What's not difficult to grasp is the need to be continually fed a story to survive, for so long as the story is printed. So you keep going to the trough that feeds. 

It's no secret that the trough is far deeper in Govan than it is East of Dennistoun. 🙂 

eg. Celtic choose to engage less with the MSSM and channel their 'news' through the recognised club outlets. This route is so much more dependable. Don't get me wrong, bait is often thrown and the fish bite. But there tends to be less dirty washing.

Contrast this with the dung flung over the Govan stands. There's an abiding stench from the laundry down there.

So, in answer to your rhetorical question. You don't get paid twice. You add a day to your notice period every time you come up with 8 column inches of pish that the shoal swallow.  

 

 

 

 

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Jingso.JimsiePosted on10:57 am - Jul 14, 2020


'John Clark 14th July 2020 at 00:03

Question: If I am a journalist, and get handed a 'press release' from any business's PR person, do I get paid by my newspaper per column inch of that 'press release'  that I manage get into print in the newspaper as well as by the PR person's business?' 

################################

One of my guilty pleasures is to read the 'output' of a certain journalist in the 'Lifestyle' area of the Scotsman who appears to do nothing but C'n'P press releases: mostly food- & drink-related. I doubt if she's written more than a couple of hundred words of her own devising in the past year. 

Are 'freebies' involved? What do you think?

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normanbatesmumfcPosted on11:41 am - Jul 14, 2020


reasonablechap 13th July 2020 at 16:54

I won’t reply directly to the individual posts about going after journalists and others who dare to call a football team by it’s name as I’m sure the posters will be busy writing to so many people and organisations. That said, it’d be interesting to know if Peter Lawwell was one of those who didn’t reply and how JC classified him (using his own chosen options) “useless tosser” or “betrayer” kiss

………………………………………………………………………………..

Perhaps it would not be deemed so bad if Ralston and his ilk did actually call a football team by its name, that name in this case being The Rangers.

As you well know, there was a team called Rangers, (Rangers Football Club PLC) who entered liquidation in 2012 and remain there.

The new club manufactured by the big hands of Charles Green in 2012 were not called Rangers Football Club Limited, they were called The Rangers Football Club Limited. Therefore their correct name is The Rangers.

Why so-called journalists and other media reporters erroneously call them Rangers is either laziness, stupidity or deliberate deceit. I know which one I believe…. 

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reasonablechapPosted on11:59 am - Jul 14, 2020


paddy malarkey 13th July 2020 at 21:30

Come now , don’t be hiding your light under a bushel – you know if PL replied or not , don’t you ? You are forever telling us how and what Peter Lawell thinks ,and how he organises events to benefit his club to the detriment of all others . Or is it all just your opinion masquerading as fact ? (again ?).

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

The first question to be answered is if JC sent one of his letters to Peter. I made the assumption that Peter/the PLC came under the JC classification of “others” but don’t know if he’s been ticked off the long list or is still pending.

Regarding Peter and what you termed “..organising events to benefit his club..”, I’m almost surprised you seem to be asking for some kind of evidence, as it is very obviously, a big part of his job remit. What is also obvious, is that it wouldn’t necessarily be to the “..detriment of all clubs..”. Will come back to that.

The real issue is how exactly, the most powerful individual in Scottish fitbaw, at the most powerful club in Scottish fitbaw, goes about exerting influence. Being from what is now very definitely the establishment club, puts him at the axis of decision-making/policy. He will, on behalf of his club be the most influential driver of what is going-on, eg. who did Eric Drysdale (leaked whatsup) think Neil would first talk to once the Dundee vote issue become apparent, yes…”Peter“.

It is my contention that Peter was very much part of pushing the SPFL to conflate and railroad the infamous resolution. This was a route that would eventually rubber stamp the title award and importantly, secure access to the CL qualifiers and potentialy, tens of millions of pounds. When it comes to that type of money, CEO’s on big bonus packages will do all that is within their grasp to secure, in this case, the opportunity.

It’d be a bigger ask, to believe that he didn’t get involved with his allies on the SPFL executive to help shape events. 

As for detriment to other clubs, some are affected more than others and we are yet to see the end result. Hearts and Partick Thistle took it to court/arbitration and Rangers will be keeping an eye on what happens. Why? Because they were disadvantaged aswell. However, HMFC/PT were in a better position to challenge it because they have a stronger case given they have materially lost out compared to Rangers main disadvantage (opportunity to secure CL monies) dependent on what would be future football match results.

 

Moving on to the top tier fixtures. One team got the best deal and in this case, it was very much to the detriment of the majority of other SPFL clubs.

Celtic had made noises both directly and indirectly regards what they wanted, they got it.

The needs of a collective of 30 lower league clubs were ignored.

Easyjambo wrote the following…..”I’m sure that everyone will be astonished to find that the first Celtic v Rangers fixture has been scheduled for Round 11 of the first round of fixtures.  That of course offers the best opportunity for the game, scheduled for the weekend of 17/18 October, to be played in front of a live (possibly restricted) audience.

Now, for Celtic, what league game would be their best opportunity of maximising revenues from the sale of tickets, hospitality, merchandising, advertising etc. Isn’t it an amazing coincidence any such game should end up being scheduled to offer Celtic their best opportunity to boost their income after having to deal with a number of games against other Premiership clubs behind closed doors.

Where is Peter ?……..#FollowtheMoney

 

The main reason Peter Lawwell doesn’t come under more scrutiny on this board is that he doesn’t work from Ibrox and hence can’t be seen when looking through the Rangers Prism. 
 

 

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scottcPosted on12:11 pm - Jul 14, 2020


normanbatesmumfc 14th July 2020 at 11:41

Perhaps it would not be deemed so bad if Ralston and his ilk did actually call a football team by its name, that name in this case being The Rangers.

As you well know, there was a team called Rangers, (Rangers Football Club PLC) who entered liquidation in 2012 and remain there.

The new club manufactured by the big hands of Charles Green in 2012 were not called Rangers Football Club Limited, they were called The Rangers Football Club Limited. Therefore their correct name is The Rangers.

 

Thing is though, the original club was also called The Rangers Football Club, (in it's case it was PLC although it had previously been The Rangers Football Club Limited). The addition of 'The' as a differentiator was nothing more than a Charles Green fiction. He used exactly the same name as that under which the original club was incorporated.

https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/SC004276

 

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Cluster OnePosted on1:00 pm - Jul 14, 2020


stifflersmom 13th July 2020 at 23:58

Cluster One 13th July 2020 at 22:32

Here’s the link Cluster One: (you may have to ‘cut n paste’)

https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/rangers-blast-back-sports-direct-22286713
………….
Thanks.

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Cluster OnePosted on1:22 pm - Jul 14, 2020


reasonablechap 14th July 2020 at 11:59…… Celtic had made noises both directly and indirectly regards what they wanted, they got it.
………………..
Celtic did push against Title Declaration (April 5, 2020) They wanted that but never got it.
………….
Rangers will be keeping an eye on what happens. Why? Because they were disadvantaged aswell. However, HMFC/PT were in a better position to challenge it because they have a stronger case given they have materially lost out compared to Rangers main disadvantage (opportunity to secure CL monies) dependent on what would be future football match results.
……….
You could also have stated Motherwell were disadvantaged aswell.On what would be future football match results. Finishing second and a missed (opportunity to secure CL monies)

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paddy malarkeyPosted on1:24 pm - Jul 14, 2020


reasonablechap 14th July 2020 at 11:59

Please don't be surprised by me asking for some kind of evidence – that's how we separate the wheat from the chaff . You do have it ? And you don't know why Eric Drysdale would think anything- just opinion again . 

You contend that Peter Lawell/CFC exerted pressure but again offer no evidence . I contend they sat back and let others try to find an amicable solution , probably for presentational reasons . I offer no evidence either .

And here is a c&p from one of the two cheeks fanzines , The Daily Record , that appears to give CFC's viewpoint .

A source said: “Celtic’s position is very clear. We have always wanted the league season to be completed and that remains our view. If there is any chance of playing the games and finishing the season over the summer then that’s what we would prefer. But we also understand the financial problems are piling up for clubs all across the country the longer this crisis continues. If the season has to be ended early in order to stop clubs from going to the wall then, of course, we would go along with that. It has to be all about the greater good.”

I support Thistle but don't support their stance on this , and that's got nothing to do with any Svengali , real or imaginary . Peter Lawell isn't making us make an ars* of ourselves .

 

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John ClarkPosted on1:26 pm - Jul 14, 2020


reasonablechap 14th July 2020 at 11:59

"..The main reason Peter Lawwell doesn’t come under more scrutiny on this board is that he doesn’t work from Ibrox and hence can’t be seen when looking through the Rangers Prism."

________________________

Oh, for heaven's sake! 

There is no comparison, no possible comparison, between whatever sins of 'influence' 'Peter' may have committed and  the decade of cheating both in sport and in tax matters of SDM and his 'Rangers Football Club' with the assistance of the Football Governance bodies at least to the extent of their failure to examine how it was possible for that club to sign such big name stars who were ready to play for a fraction of the wages they could have commanded!

I have issues with 'Peter', certainly, but they relate not to any cheating perpetrated by him or by Celtic but to the failure to force the Governance bodies to follow through on the Res 12 and nail the RFC of 1872 and those in 'governance' who were and are happy to let a new club masquerade as RFC of 1872.

But he's a long way from being as black with sin and deceit as those associated with the 'saga', may they never prosper.

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