The Vice Closes

Avatar ByBig Pink

The Vice Closes

News in The Times of Celtic’s letter to Stewart Regan regarding that club’s wish for a Judicial Review into the SFA’s handing of the Rangers EBT crisis increases the pressure on Regan considerably.

The SFA Chief Executive’s ill-advised spat with Pie and Bovril editor David McDonald this week may even be a sign he is devolving, and at least it demonstrates that, despite Twitter disaster after Twitter disaster, Regan doesn’t learn readily from his mistakes.

Also, it appears from the contents of Celtic’s letter that their target in terms of a Judicial Review has been the SFA, and not the SPFL, all along. That chimes with developments as I understand them elsewhere in this process.

Even though it now appears that Celtic and a fan group are seeking a Judicial Review it is by no means certain that it will ever happen.

Having a sound legal basis for it, obtaining standing, and having a reasonable chance of victory are all variables in the equation, and each has to be weighed carefully before progress can be made.

Having said that, if the reason any Judicial Review fails is because of that lawyer-speak we have been subjected to of late, the SFA may yet come to believe that hiding behind legalese is neither in football’s best interests, nor in the interests of the individuals at the SFA who are under fire.

The bottom line as they, is this;

Rangers did acquire an unfair advantage over others by their use of EBTs. The SPL themselves were flabbergasted when Sandy Bryson proclaimed his eponymous ‘imperfectly registered’ doctrine. They all know – everyone in every board room in the country, in every SFA department, in every SPFL office – that cheating took place.

In fact and in spirit.

The jaws of the vice are tightening as we speak. The fans group who are building a case for a Judicial Review give its handle a wee turn every day, and the leak of the Celtic letter to Regan reduces his wiggle room even further.

It is surely now just a matter of time before this ridiculous and infamous chapter in Scotland’s football history is dealt with.

Of course people will accuse anyone who is a Celtic fan, or an Aberdeen fan, or a Dundee United fan (clubs whose rivalry with Rangers is keenest) of partisanship in this affair. That is mere deflection and bears no scrutiny whatsoever.

As a Celtic fan myself, I can’t deny that I am angry at what took place between (at least) 2000 and 2009, but does that mean that as a Celtic fan I have to recuse myself from having an opinion?

And as a former employee of the club, am I excluded from any conversation about the integrity of our game because the club at the centre of the scandal is Rangers? Pull the other one.

SFM, and the wider fans’ movement has been consistently appalled by this sorry chapter over the last six years, but is no kangaroo court. We are not asking for conclusions to be drawn without due process. We see unexplained regulatory anomalies in the processes at Ibrox and Hampden which have never to our knowledge been addressed. We simply wish that they should be.

Further, if my club was at the heart of this nonsense, I think I’d be incandescent with rage that they had allowed me to revel in the joy of winning all those trophies, only to have the achievements cheapened and nullified by their mismanagement. I would regard that as the ultimate betrayal (and Celtic fans can give you a list of club betrayals as long as Mao’s march).

I’d be thinking that those same business practices that apparently had given us so much, had actually caused to fail catastrophically. Having taken delight in the honours, I would have to accept the consequences too.

The SFA, by their corrupt approach to the demise of Rangers, have denied Rangers fans the catharsis that they could benefit from. In fact the authorities’ refusal to deal with the situation in terms of their own rules it has fostered a siege mentality to exist at Ibrox.

This in turn has enabled a series of charlatans, including the current board, to drive the bus in the direction of a brick wall for the last five years.

After the phenomenally successful share issue (something that can’t happen again whilst King is in charge for regulatory reasons), the new Rangers were given seed capital which should have flowered by now with the regular watering of their huge fan base. That £22m, which should have seen the club competing at the top by now has gone, and the potential which existed in 2012 has been diminished severely.

It’s no fun being a fan of Scottish football in the midst of this. But we make a fundamental error if we think that Rangers fans are enjoying it. They are victims in this too, and they have been defrauded by the Murray-era shenanigans, and the circus performers who have been on the scene since then – every bit as much as the rest of us.

The honourable thing (no laughing at the back) for the SFA to do would be to agree to Celtic’s request for a Judicial Review.

If the pressure is turned up another notch or three on the SFA, then maybe we will all get closure, and perhaps finally we can move on.

About the author

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Big Pink administrator

Big Pink is John Cole; a former schoolteacher based in the West of Scotland, He is also a print and broadcast journalist who is engaged in the running of SFM . Former gigs include Newstalk 106, the Celtic View, and Channel67. A Celtic fan, he is also the voice of our podcast initiative.

875 Comments so far

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jimboPosted on10:03 pm - Sep 19, 2017


Why oh why do GKs punt it up to the half way line?  About 50% of the time it goes to the opposition…Why not pass it out to your defenders?

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jimboPosted on10:19 pm - Sep 19, 2017


Well that’s it over.  Apologies to everyone but I couldn’t think of any more insults to throw at the football authorities so I watched the game.

I reckon John Clark, Auldheid, AJ, EJ, will be back on shortly.  DG.

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jimboPosted on11:04 pm - Sep 19, 2017


JC you there

That’s all we need. JC having problems with his computer. I’d give up

Listen to R4 extra

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John ClarkPosted on11:21 pm - Sep 19, 2017


jimboSeptember 19, 2017 at 22:19
‘..I reckon John Clark, Auldheid, AJ, EJ, will be back on shortly. DG.’
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Don’t know about the others, jimbo, but here I am, logging in (or is it ‘on’?) after returning from a pleasant afternoon and evening in Blairgowrie visiting the (three-year past) widowed friend of Mrc C , and enjoying the incidental  pleasure of crossing the Queensferry Crossing ( having NOT been lucky in the draw for the opportunity to walk across it!)

A simply beautiful structure, which had the same effect on me as the Kelpies at Falkirk.

If I had been able to stop on the bridge, I would have stood as entranced as I was when I stood at the Kelpies and simply said out loud ” ach, ach, it’s so brilliantly, beautifully wonderful!”
It’s not a mere functional bridge , it is a superb work of art.!

But that is by-the-by.

Not being a Twitter person, I nevertheless clicked on the link in a tweet which appeared to show Wallace being interviewed about his views on the SFA/SPFL ‘disagreement’ on whether there should be a review..and the intervention of James Traynor  telling folk that ‘Rangers weren’t liquidated’.

I don’t know when that interview was recorded , or who exactly it was who asked the question and referred to ‘liquidation’

But when Traynor ( God forgive him, because I don’t think I will) came out with the ” Rangers weren’t liquidated” assertion, I thought whoever had asked the question might just have said something in rebuttal, and thrown Traynor’s own statements back in his face. If not then and there, at lest subsequently, and in print.

What is it that has our SMSM folk so terrified to challenge, so ready to roll over to a man so devoid of any kind of journalistic integrity as to dare to deny his contradictions in front of those well placed enough to know that he speaks with forked tongue, for filthy lucre’s sake? 

Good God Almighty, that such should be allowed to spout their nonsense!

Is there schizophrenia somewhere? Are there two JTs?

One was quite enough.

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paddy malarkey

paddy malarkeyPosted on12:03 am - Sep 20, 2017


Yo Jimbo ! lest you think you’re on your own , I’d like to inform you that this is not an echo . I was at the game tonight and left after 90 minutes . It appeared to me that both teams had been warned about their conduct , and removed any hostility from their arsenal . It was worse than guff. I couldn’t have sat through any more of that pish Got better (for one club,so I’m told )in ET .  Our lack of pace concerns me . We’ll probably finish 9th .

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easyJamboPosted on1:12 am - Sep 20, 2017


I’m disappointed that Hearts still haven’t made their position clear regarding a review of the football authorities handling of the Rangers EBT affair, although PMGB indicates that he believes that Ann Budge is against a review.

I think Ann’s silence on the matter will more likely be down to short term economics, i.e. sell 10,000 tickets to Rangers fans for Murrayfield at the end of October, or 3,000 if she comes out and supports a review.

In parallel, a poll on Hearts most popular forum, JambosKickback, over the past couple of days has produced the following responses.
For a review 455 – 80.82%
Against a review 31 – 5.51%
Don’t care 77 – 13.68%
So I’m reassured that Hearts fans remain strongly in favour of a review, whatever the club Board chooses to do or not do. 

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Cluster One

Cluster OnePosted on7:15 am - Sep 20, 2017


JOHN CLARKSEPTEMBER 19, 2017 at 23:21
I don’t know when that interview was recorded , or who exactly it was who asked the question and referred to ‘liquidation’
But when Traynor ( God forgive him, because I don’t think I will) came out with the ” Rangers weren’t liquidated” assertion, I thought whoever had asked the question might just have said something in rebuttal, and thrown Traynor’s own statements back in his face. If not then and there, at lest subsequently, and in print.
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Has the identity of the one who asked the liquidation question bean made public yet or has it been kept hidden,with no rebuttal thrown back at Traynor there and then nor in print does this person call himself or herself a journalist. with no rebuttal this person when there identity is known will be mocked for evermore.
You are under Traynors thumb and a coward,how do you look your own family in the face
(that’s just me being polite with the mocking)

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FinlochPosted on7:57 am - Sep 20, 2017


EASYJAMBOSEPTEMBER 20, 2017 at 01:12 
I’m disappointed that Hearts still haven’t made their position clear regarding a review of the football authorities handling of the Rangers EBT affair, although PMGB indicates that he believes that Ann Budge is against a review.
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I don’t know if she is for or against a review.
She is future focussed and has real work to do looking and going forward with the stadium and the club.
I’d say Ann Budge is fully aware that if she does nothing in public that in turn nothing will then “happen” to interfere with what she can reasonably expect.
If she or any chairman comes out one by one and supports a review in public she then almost certainly brings in all the toxicity associated with the Ibrox club.
And she probably thinks some of that will be a financial downside.

The incredible fact is the elephant in the Scottish Football room affecting the politicians, the clubs, the administrators and the media is the potential toxicity of some Rangers fans and indeed the institution it was and has now become.

Its embarrassing, worrying and nobody has a strategy to deal with it.

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HighlanderPosted on8:02 am - Sep 20, 2017


Like Zilch above, I feel a little bit uncomfortable having stirred a hornet’s nest over the matter of singing/chanting offensive songs, so these will be my last words on the subject.

Zilch and Realshocks have helpfully explained the difference between political and sectarian songs/chants and I’ve absolutely no problem with that differentiation.

However, to deny that Celtic fans participate in pro-IRA chanting and other offensive behaviour, particularly at away matches, is disingenuous. It may not be on the same scale as ‘The Billy Boys’, but it should be significant enough to alert Police Scotland from their matchtime slumbers. Unfortunately, just as with the Ibrox crew, they seem completely disinterested.

One of the largest broadcasters of Scottish football recently admitted to having to turn down the volume at Celtic matches in order to drown out offensive singing and chanting. I Googled the words ‘Celtic’, ‘singing’ and ‘chanting’ and umpteen different reports of offensive crowd behaviour appeared, and that’s not to mention all the instances that go unreported and unrecorded. Just ask any Hearts fan about the chants from the away end when Celtic visit the volatile atmosphere at Tynecastle and there’s plenty of anecdotal evidence to show that the same occurs at other grounds, much of it unreported in the press.

It’s been clear to me for some time that the only solution to offensive behaviour is strict liability, whereby the clubs bear responsibility for their fans behaviour inside (and immediately outside) stadia. It’s equally clear that the clubs aren’t going to voluntarily subscribe to strict liability, so government intervention is necessary, regardless of whether that creates a problem in the eyes of UEFA/FIFA.

I’m conscious that this post might come across as critical of Celtic, whose fans make up the vast majority on here. It’s not intended to do anything other than provide a degree of honesty and above all balance in a contentious debate.

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ZilchPosted on9:21 am - Sep 20, 2017


Highlander

We agree on a lot of stuff here.

I don’t deny that our away fans are regularly singing IRA songs. They do. I want them to stop. I can’t be any clearer than that.

I disagree that this is sectarian. Offensive to some, undoubtedly.

I could say similar things about Flower of Scotland (massively anti-English) and God Save the Queen (equally anti-Scottish) – I can live with these songs as I know they are important to people and they have a right to express themselves.

I can’t accept the sectarianism of the Billy Boys. Nor would I accept racist or homophobic chanting.

Moving on I agree with you that strict liability is not going to happen – it leaves all of our clubs at the mercy of fans.

I am suggesting an alternative.

If our fans or Rangers fans are behaving in a way that is unacceptable, i.e. is in breach of the terms and conditions of entry, then evict them from the ground.

If that is not possible (and crowd control is not to be understimated – probably why Police Scotland are not wading in) then how about this?

Persistent breach of the terms and conditions of entry to a ground by a visiting support results in a home club being allowed to refuse entry (sale of tickets) to away fans.

If you don’t want to hear the war songs or the sectarian songs at your ground – campaign with your club to ban the visiting supports.

Not sure if this is within the rules of the game or not? However it would be one way to make an impact on the issue. It could be a way for the SFA / SPFL to make a difference if a rule change is needed.

In my original post I finished with the point that I will make again now.

Given the financial value of Rangers and (following our conversation) Celtic fans coming to grounds around the country, is there any appetite amongst the other clubs to make such a stand?

There is not much point complaining about both cheeks etc if the other clubs are not willing to act in their own patch.

I appreciate you not wanting to go on with this – I am also pretty uncomfortable – no offense will be taken either way. I just think we need to fully understand the nature of the problem and where our clubs and the association really are on it.

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wottpiPosted on10:24 am - Sep 20, 2017


The question we all have to be asking ourselves re singing, flegs etc etc is why is it apparently acceptable to indulge in what is essentially offensive behavior within our football stadiums.

This type of thing generally doesn’t go on at other sporting events.

You don’t go to the local cinema rip up the seats, wreck to toilets and shout abuse at fellow film lovers and sing about how you may like to wade in their blood.

At Glastonbury Manic Street Preachers fan’s aren’t calling Dolly Parton fans names and chucking coins, batteries and cups of piss at them. Neither are they running onto the stage to boot her up the arse.

You don’t go to another town’s shopping centre/mall and chant and joke  about who may or may not have been involved in the local paedophilia ring and revel in which undesirable may be ‘one of their own’. 

Only in the pitiful world of Scottish football would fans one team weirdly get involved in canonizing a person that has apparently little or no connection with their club, only to have fans of their closest rivals to then joyfully sing a song mocking the death of a poor lad who was just trying to make his way in the world when he met an undeserved, sad and cruel end.

We can dress up some of the nonsense with regards to ‘political/cultural heritage’ and the like but frankly some people really just need to grow up and start living in the 21st century, where there are far more current and important matters for us to be concerned with.

Like the whole Rangers saga, it still amazes me that so many people (both fans and the authorities) are still willing to put up with this nonsense.

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jimboPosted on11:54 am - Sep 20, 2017


Sometimes after I have been in the pub I dread to read back what I previously said.  But I know there is no badness in me, and then I get a couple of posts which are supportive.

JC being one. 

I think I need help.  I had an imaginary argument with Jim Traynor earlier on.  I gave him pelters.  I accused him of the things he said in 2012.  You couldn’t imagine the names I called him.  Then I turned round to the other ‘churnalists’ present and left them without a name.

I’m not a fighter but in that moment I stood tall.  Willing them all to take me on, knowing Auldheid, JC, AJ, EJ were behind me.

Then I had a cup of tea.

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AuldheidPosted on12:12 pm - Sep 20, 2017


UPTHEHOOPSSEPTEMBER 18, 2017 at 07:11  
JOHN CLARKSEPTEMBER 17, 2017 at 22:02 Or, what happens if the SFA’s wee look at the licence issue establishes that there was dirty work at the crossroads, with the SFA and RFC(IL) conspiring together to cheat Celtic plc out of millions by wrongfully awarding a UEFA licence to RFC(IL)?
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From the SFA utterances so far, the review seems very narrowly focused on whether the SFA were misled. It does not appear to be going anywhere close to asking what people at the SFA knew, and when did they know it. Mr Regan’s arrogant demeanour the other day suggests he is fairly confident of that. I have no doubt the review will find that Craig Whyte lied to the SFA, but that the SFA acted in good faith and with the utmost integrity at all times. I believe it will also find a way to minimise the role of the current Ibrox board members who were around at that time. Finally, I believe the SFA will say they have legal advice that no action can be taken therefore the matter is now closed for good. In that case no matter what the Resolution 12 people and the Celtic board know, it will be difficult to progress outwith a court.  I could be wrong of course but given how everything else has panned out this seems to me the most likely scenario. Anyway, without an independent body as part of the review it is not worth the paper it will be written on.  
What if Craig Whyte ever tells his version of what happened though? Just a thought.  A Scottish publication won’t go near it but he will get some outlet to run with it I’m sure. Let’s not forget Mr Whyte was found not guilty in a criminal court of any fraudulent behaviour.  He has been subjected to a level of scrutiny no-one at the SFA has ever had to go near. 
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There are 3 stages in granting and monitoring a UEFA licence regarding over due tax.

31st March Art 50 when there can be no overdue payables to HMRC. Based on evidence provided RFC misrepresented the true status of the liability.

CraiG Whyte did not Takeover until 6th May so any deception took place under Chairmanship of Alistair Johnson when SDM was major shareholder.

30th June Art 66 when an update is provided by RFC via SFA to UEFA . CW is responsible for that and basically continued the same deceit. In mid September UEFA and SFA discussed the Art66 submission and in spite of it continuing on the same lines as Art50 submission the submission was verbally accepted. What was discussed has to be part of any investigation.

30 Sept  Another update under Art 67. This coincided with it being public knowledge Sherriff Officers had called to collect so at same time in mid Sept after discussion with UEFA, the  SFA advised RFC that a submission under Art67 was required in tones that are eye brow raising.

That Art67vsubmission was made by CW, contained similar message to give impression of ongoing discussions but claimed a payment towards liability that was never made. SFA passed this on to UEFA.

Never at any time from March to September 2011 did SFA use their power under Art 43 to verify position with HMRC. It is also possible that SFA did not carry out the checks under FFP rules with the rigour intended.

All of the above is a matter of record and was presented to SFA and is basis on which a Comp Off case was finally opened after Donald McIntyre made the status of the liability at 31 March public at CQ trail.

The Comp Off will be well acquainted with the records as he was first presented with some in 2014 by Celtic acting on behalf of shareholders.

In July 2015 he was then presented with a solid case for Investigation with pointers to where breaches may have occured but the response did not result in the investigation now happening, although the SFA’s reluctance to engage using confidentiality as an excuse did eventuall lead to UEFA involvement in Jun 2016. (The Traverso letter) where UEFA having explained their position left it open for a member club to pursue,  which Celtic have domestically since December 2016 after the AGM.

Why it took from December 2011 to July 2017 for the SFA to finally admit, in spite of information provided from 2014, that an investigation was required has to be part of the investigatory remit.

In particular the role of the SFA based on statements and interviews made by Regan from 2011 that demonstrate his lack of knowledge of FFP and his dependency for interpretation on Andrew Dickson to supplement what understanding Regan had (Dickson being a member of the Licensing Committee that granted the licence now under investigation whilst he at the same time was RFC’s Football Administrator handling ebt contracts with side letters) has to be part of the investigation or its not worth a candle.
The investigation also has to be independent of the SFA and contain input from UEFA or better still Chaired by a UEFA representative.
If RFC found guilty it would cause a legal battle if SFA or UEFA tried to sanction TRFC whose defense would be they are not same club as RFC under UEFA rules.
SFA, if smart, will bow to UEFA rules designed to preserve sporting integrity and both they and SPFL will publicly a knowledge 5 way agreement allowing transfer of SFA Membership conflicted with UEFA and future records of both regarding TRFC will reflect their membership of Scottish football began in 2012.
Regan can then apologise to Celtic for his incompetence and if the SFA in any way are shown to have played a part either negligence at granting or complicity during monitoring, Regan as CEO at the time will have to resign.
A full independent investigation is required and Celtic are in a position to demand one because of what appears to be fraudulent behaviour by RFC at their financial expense in 2011 and negligence by the SFA at best.

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John ClarkPosted on1:04 pm - Sep 20, 2017


AuldheidSeptember 20, 2017 at 12:12
“….There are 3 stages in granting and monitoring a UEFA licence regarding over due tax…”
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Isn’t it truly incredible that no sports journalist or business journalist has been prepared to do any kind of basic investigation into this affair?

Why is this, when the known facts neatly summarised by you, make it plain as  pikestaff that the SFA cannot be left to review itself, because it is their actions that more desperately need to be the focus of investigation.

For Regan to try to turn the matter  into a simple reference to the Compliance Officer for consideration  of whether  a club has a case to answer is simply not acceptable.

RFC(IL) made a liar of itself  and is now resting in the dishonourable  vaults of compulsory liquidation ( and may Traynor’s lies come back to bite his ample ar.e!)

The officers of the SFA who, many think, may also have lied, are still in post.

They cannot be judge and jury in their own case.

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paddy malarkey

paddy malarkeyPosted on1:07 pm - Sep 20, 2017


Regarding the sectarian songbook, I have always been of the opinion that a start can be made by Police Scotland holding back all in the offending section of the ground and recording their personal details as they may have been part of a group who committed a sectarian crime by singing a proscribed song . The inconvenience caused will, imo , make the choristers think that the hour of their time could be better spent .

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Homunculus

HomunculusPosted on1:11 pm - Sep 20, 2017


AULDHEID
SEPTEMBER 20, 2017 at 12:12 
Never at any time from March to September 2011 did SFA use their power under Art 43 to verify position with HMRC.

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Sorry, just to clarify, are you saying that the SFA have the power to obtain confidential taxpayer information from HMRC.

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Homunculus

HomunculusPosted on1:19 pm - Sep 20, 2017


PADDY MALARKEY
SEPTEMBER 20, 2017 at 13:07
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Assuming a support of say 5,000 and an average time of 30 seconds to record the relevant details, which the person would probably just make up anyway. That’s over 40 man hours, so if your doing it in an hour that’s 40 Officers being deployed. Forgive me if my arithmetic is wrong. 

Let’s also factor in the people who simply refuse to provide their details, what are you doing with them. Are you detaining them, on what charge, that’s two of your forty Officers now out of the game as they have to take them to a Police Office, which within 15 minutes is bulging. 

I think the Police take a much more pragmatic approach and film the people. Then if they are suspected of having committed an offence seek to identify them.

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jean7brodie

jean7brodiePosted on1:35 pm - Sep 20, 2017


A simple question for the experts on here. How long does it take, on average, to move from being ‘in liquidation’ to being ‘liquidated’?
Please don’t mention a piece of string!!!

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John ClarkPosted on1:57 pm - Sep 20, 2017


jean7brodieSeptember 20, 2017 at 13:35
“…How long does it take, on average, to move from being ‘in liquidation’ to being ‘liquidated’?”
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I haven’t asked Companies House, jean7, but it can take years and years for the winding-up process to be completed to the point where the company is formally ‘dissolved’ and its last atoms scattered to the four winds.
For example, Gretna’s winding-up order was issued on 21.08.08: Gretna is still ‘In liquidation’!
And I think Airdrieonians were 13 years in liquidation, before being dissolved.
I don’t suppose these were any more complicated for the Liquidators than the shambolic mess that BDO have to deal with!

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AuldheidPosted on2:16 pm - Sep 20, 2017


Homunculus
Read Art 43 of UEFA FFP. (sub para h from memory)
I think you have argued this point before about HMRC duty of confidentiality, but given the history of tax avoidance/ evasion by football there will be circumstances where it is to HMRCs advantage to be able to share information with national associations and if a taxpayer has consented to enquiry as a club does under FFP then HMRC are more likely to respond positively if it helps them get paid.
On the other hand if they think they have a better chance of payment by remaining silent, possibly assisting in fraud by doing so, they will have to weigh up the consequences of a refusal.
In fact the whole tax overdue rules in UEFA FFP depend on an open interchange, otherwise a club could say what they like to a national association with no fear whatsover of discovery.
So as rule HMRC confidentiality to taxpayers is sacrosanct, but there are exceptions to rules and dodging tax using confidentiality as a cloak is surely one where the wider tax payer base considerations takes precedence?

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AuldheidPosted on2:19 pm - Sep 20, 2017


John Clark
Aye it’s amazing that the news of a Comp Off investigation has been paid scant attention by the media.
However when most ridiculed Res12 and some tried to thwart it’s aim, it is little wonder.
Onwards and upwards.

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paddy malarkey

paddy malarkeyPosted on2:25 pm - Sep 20, 2017


HOMUNCULUSSEPTEMBER 20, 2017 at 13:19

Sorry, make that hours,then . As for those who refuse to co-operate, do with them what would normally happen in that circumstance . And as for the numbers taken to Police stations, that’s what they are there for (and Maryhill, Partick and Stewart Street stations are all but a skip and a hop from the Energy Check Stadium at Firhill) . Lax policing has a lot to answer for ,imo, in these sort of situations .  We were subjected to unacceptable singing/chanting from before kick-off (and the same v Celtic) and when approached, Police officers stated that it had been brought to the attention of the match commander . Then nothing . Not exactly zero tolerance .

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Ex LudoPosted on4:34 pm - Sep 20, 2017


I’ve been following the debate re the party tunes in football grounds and the comments re the pragmatic approach taken by the police with interest. Some have suggested that arrests should be made within stadia. Quite apart from the potential to exacerbate the situation arresting 100 fans for example would require 200 police officers and transport to a police office for the miscreants and arresting officers. I think it’s fair to say that in the current climate the police might have bigger priorities.

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Jingso.JimsiePosted on4:36 pm - Sep 20, 2017


HOMUNCULUS

SEPTEMBER 20, 2017 at 13:11 

Sorry, just to clarify, are you saying that the SFA have the power to obtain confidential taxpayer information from HMRC.
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The Scottish FA Handbook for 2016/17 certainly contains a clause giving them that power. In the Articles Of Association section, page 63, section 5.6 states:

‘Each member hereby authorises the Scottish FA to communicate, engage and be the recipient ofinformation, as the Scottish FA deems appropriate, with such governmental agencies (including but not limited to HM Revenue and Customs) in respect of the financial affairs and operations of such member, subject to a duty of confidentiality to the member.’

http://www.scottishfa.co.uk/resources/documents/SFAPublications/ScottishFAPublications2016-17/Scottish%20FA%20Handbook%202016-17.pdf

I’ve no idea whether that clause applied in season 2011/12. No doubt, someone cleverer than me will know.

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StevieBC

StevieBCPosted on4:54 pm - Sep 20, 2017


“Rangers Tax-Case‏ @rangerstaxcase  2m2 minutes ago

At this stage a Judicial Review is preferable over an “independent” SFA / SPFL inquiry. Much more likely that a JR will get to the truth.

Rangers Tax-Case‏ @rangerstaxcase  5m5 minutes ago

Confirming what has been said elsewhere. Very positive news on the Judicial Review. Still hurdles but it looks like there is a path forward.”
================================

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Jingso.JimsiePosted on5:01 pm - Sep 20, 2017


Re my post at 1636:

Same clause in place in 2015/16 – page 81, clause 5.6.

Same clause in place in 2014/15 – page 85, clause 5.6.

Same clause in place in 2013/14 – page 23, clause 5.6. (Document has been archived in sections, hence lower page number.) 

It’s not in place in the 2012/13 Handbook, nor the 2011/12 version.

There is, in those years, reference to the 2010 Bribery Act. I’m not qualified to interpret that!  

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SmugasPosted on5:11 pm - Sep 20, 2017


Jean,

re your stringy liquidation question.

there is a subtle difference here to normal liquidations.  Not the ongoing court cases and tax tribunals, they are meat and drink to these liquifier chaps.  No, the simple difference here is it’s highly unusual for the company in liquidation, once the assets have been stripped out, once the secured creditors have been prioritised, to still be sitting significantly in funds.  I would guess BDO will foresee a fair bit of chicken left on this particular bone for quite some time yet.

And yet the Collyer Bristow insurance chaps don’t seem to have any issue with what has subsequently happened?  And don’t forget, without the insurance payout supposedly covering Craig Whytes book keeping irregularities, there would be no cash to disperse.  Rangers the shell was just that.

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Billy BoycePosted on5:18 pm - Sep 20, 2017


Auldheid, September 20th 2017 14.16 hours
—————————————————
 
I don’t think you have answered Homunculus’s question, which is: “Does the SFA have the (legal) power to obtain confidential taxpayer information from HMRC?”  It’s a straightforward ‘yes’ or ‘no’.
 
I am not familiar with Inland Revenue rules and regulations, but I believe the taxpayer has to officially appoint an agent, and that agent has to be properly registered with HMRC, before it releases any of the taxpayer’s information to him or entertains him acting on behalf of his client.
 
For the SFA to obtain information of the taxpayer’s affairs, would the taxpayer not have to authorise it in writing to do so, and would this extend to all aspects of the taxpayer’s affairs?  If this were the case then the SFA would have to seek and hold a mandate from every club in the country as a matter of course.
 
  I am sure HMRC will divulge relevant documents and information to law enforcement agencies in response to search warrants or court orders, but I doubt it would do so simply at the request of a third party including the much respected Scottish Football Association.

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easyJamboPosted on5:29 pm - Sep 20, 2017


A solid set of final results for 2016/17 as you would expect from Celtic given their CL participation.  It’s quite a hike in expenses though.

Financial Highlights
 
·     Group revenue increased by 74.2% to £90.6m
·     Operating expenses increased by 33.3% to £76.3m
·     Gain on sale of player registrations of £2.3m (2016: £12.6m)
·     Profit before taxation of £6.9m (2016: £0.5m)
·     Year-end cash net of bank borrowings of £17.9m (2016: £3.6m)
·     Investment in football personnel of £13.8m (2016: £8.8m)

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Homunculus

HomunculusPosted on6:03 pm - Sep 20, 2017


AULDHEID
SEPTEMBER 20, 2017 at 14:16
==========================  
HomunculusRead Art 43 of UEFA FFP. (sub para h from memory)I think you have argued this point before about HMRC duty of confidentiality, but given the history of tax avoidance/ evasion by football there will be circumstances where it is to HMRCs advantage to be able to share information with national associations and if a taxpayer has consented to enquiry as a club does under FFP then HMRC are more likely to respond positively if it helps them get paid.

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

That is exactly the point and it is the only point, if the taxpayer agrees to the information being supplied then it is not a breach of confidentiality.

It being in HMRC’s best interests to disclose confidential information to a national football association would not justify the breach. 

Now if the SFA insist that member clubs provide that authority, which seems more likely then it is not an issue. That would be similar to someone authorising HMRC to deal with their agent in relation to tax matters. 

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Homunculus

HomunculusPosted on6:07 pm - Sep 20, 2017


PADDY MALARKEY
SEPTEMBER 20, 2017 at 14:25.
==============================

If you have the 40 Officers there and 20 people refuse to give their details and are detained then that’s your 40 Officers away and the whole thing isn’t happening.

You then have 20 reports being made to the PF charging people with refusing to give their details. The offence is that they were in a crowd of thousands and we were were just taking everyone’s details, without any other evidence that the specific person had committed an offence.

Seriously, do you think that is good Policing. 

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SmugasPosted on6:21 pm - Sep 20, 2017


Nope.  So points deductions it is then.  Fine by me.

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jean7brodie

jean7brodiePosted on6:40 pm - Sep 20, 2017


JC and Smugas, thanks for your answers.0404 Much appreciated.

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AuldheidPosted on6:48 pm - Sep 20, 2017


Homunculus
Billy Boyce
Here is Article 43 in full. You will note it is a declaration the license applicant has to complete. My reading of it is it not only gives the SFA the power to seek information under national law it gives HMRC authority from the club to release it. In fact somewhere amongst licensing rules I think I have actually seen a template of such authority but not in UEFA FFP 2010.
Not being a tax expert I do not know  what the national law is but given the declaration appears to cover your joint point then the SFA could have sought and obtained confirmation had they wanted to.
IV. LEGAL CRITERIA
Article 43 – Declaration in respect of participation in UEFA club competitions
1 The licence applicant must submit a legally valid declaration confirming the
following:
a) It recognises as legally binding the statutes, regulations, directives and
decisions of FIFA, UEFA, the UEFA member association and, if any, the
national league as well as the jurisdiction of the Court of Arbitration for Sport
(CAS) in Lausanne as provided in the relevant articles of the UEFA Statutes;

b) At national level it will play in competitions recognised and endorsed by the
UEFA member association (e.g. national championship, national cup);

c) At international level it will participate in competitions recognised by UEFA or
FIFA (to avoid any doubt, this provision does not relate to friendly matches);
d) It will promptly inform the licensor about any significant change, event or
condition of major economic importance;

e) It will abide by and observe the club licensing regulations of the UEFA
member association;

f) It will abide by and observe the UEFA Club Licensing and Financial Fair Play
Regulations;

g) All submitted documents are complete and correct;

h) It (the licence applicant) authorises the competent national club licensing administration and national club licensing bodies, the UEFA administration, the Club Financial Control Panel and the UEFA Organs for the Administration of Justice to examine any relevant document and seek information from any relevant public authority or private body in accordance with national law;

i) It acknowledges that UEFA reserves the right to execute compliance audits
at national level in accordance with Article 71.

2 The declaration must be executed by an authorised signatory of the licence
applicant no more than three months prior to the deadline for its submission to
the licensor.

Further under Article 50 the applicant has to PROVE to the national association it does not have tax overdue payables at 31st March and Annex IX :Licensor’s assessment procedures for the financial criteria and requirements
at para 3 of Section D sets out what SFA should do.

3. The licensor (the SFA) must assess all supporting documents in respect of payables to
social and tax authorities in respect of contractual and legal obligations towards
the licence applicant’s employees. In particular he must perform the following
steps:
a) Agree the recorded balance of payroll taxes as at 31 December to the payroll
records of the club.
b) If there is an amount due as at 31 March that arose before the previous 31
December, examine that, by 31 March at the latest:
i) an agreement has been reached as per Annex VIII(2 b); or
ii) a dispute has arisen as per Annex VIII(2 c or d).
c) If applicable: examine documents, including agreements with the tax/social
authorities and/or correspondence with the competent body, in support of b(i)
and/or b(ii) above.
The UEFA licence was not granted until 19th April 2011 and plenty of time for SFA to check if i) and ii) were complied with as well as acting on c) particularly in light of media reports on the situation on 1st April 2011 quoting the RFC Chairman of there being a cash flow problem,  ie inability to pay.

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patmattPosted on7:11 pm - Sep 20, 2017


Mark Sampson, England’s women’s team manager has been sacked after surviving a complaint about his behaviour towards a team member. Another team member spoke up on behalf of the woman whose complaint was “thrown out”; the FA agreed to look again at the issue. Investigation found that FA officials dealing with the complaint had not read a report on Sampson, which gave details of claims against him when he was Bristol Academy boss. A safeguarding assessment in 2015 found that Sampson “did not pose a risk”.
The reports on BBC website do not give any more detail.
So it appears that the FA did not do the job properly and the lassie who complained was found not to be a sound witness when her case was investigated. Sounds a wee bit familiar.

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jimboPosted on7:46 pm - Sep 20, 2017


The football is on again.  Cheerio lads.

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Homunculus

HomunculusPosted on7:54 pm - Sep 20, 2017


AULDHEID
SEPTEMBER 20, 2017 at 18:48
===========================

h) It (the licence applicant) authorises the competent national club licensing administration and national club licensing bodies, the UEFA administration, the Club Financial Control Panel and the UEFA Organs for the Administration of Justice to examine any relevant document and seek information from any relevant public authority or private body in accordance with national law

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

They can seek whatever they want, from whoever they want. I can contact HMRC and ask them to provide me with a copy of my brothers self assessment return. I doubt if they would give me it.

If the taxpayer has provided HMRC with authority to pass their records to the SFA then as I said that would not breach confidentiality. However it is no different from the taxpayer providing his accountant (agent) with the same level of access. 

I’m sorry but I do not believe that the SFA have powers which allow them to access confidential taxpayers records held by HMRC. Unless it is with the expressed consent of that taxpayer. 

https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/hm-revenue-customs/about/personal-information-charter

All information that HM Revenue & Customs holds is subject to our duty of confidentiality.

We know how important it is to protect customers’ privacy and to comply with the Data Protection Act (1998). As such, we will not give your information to anyone, including government departments and their agencies, local authorities, the police or any other public or private sector bodies, unless we have lawful authority to do so.

Information we may give to others

If the law allows, we may give information about you to:
other government departments and similar bodiesthe police and law enforcement agenciesthe courts, on production of a valid court orderforeign tax and customs authorities

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AuldheidPosted on8:49 pm - Sep 20, 2017


Homunculus
The power to seek is there. The permission of Club to provide sought information is there.
Why would HMRC refuse to provide sought information? 
Regardless my point is the SFA had the power to seek. 
If you are correct they will say they did not bother because HMRC refused to respond but that leaves a gaping hole in UEFA FFP in the UK.
An investigation will reveal what the SFA did or did not do and if the Declaration under 43 is worthless in the UK,  UEFA will have to consider the efficacy of their rules which is another reason an investigation involving UEFA is necessary.
As long as all other national associations tax authorities adopt HMRC’s position then the rules will be applied evenly across Europe.
If not UK clubs prepared to take advantage of HMRC confidentiality and risk telling porkies have an advantage. 

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jimboPosted on9:00 pm - Sep 20, 2017


please god help that Dundee player, caught a bad one in the throat I think.

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Homunculus

HomunculusPosted on9:00 pm - Sep 20, 2017


AULDHEID
SEPTEMBER 20, 2017 at 20:49  
HomunculusThe power to seek is there. The permission of Club to provide sought information is there.Why would HMRC refuse to provide sought information? Regardless my point is the SFA had the power to seek. 
==================================

I’m sorry, but again the “power to seek” is a meaningless phrase. 

I have the “power to seek” anything I want from anyone I want. 

It is simply down to this. Has the taxpayer authorised HMRC to release that information to the body seeking it.

If they have then I have no issue with that. The information is being released in just the same way as it is being released to anyone else if the taxpayer has authorised it. 

What other tax collecting authorities do is irrelevant. HMRC are subject to the DPA just the same as everyone else. 

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/client-authorisation-an-overview

Agent authorisation to deal with HMRC

Overview
As a tax agent or adviser, you must be formally authorised by an individual or business to deal with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) on their behalf. HMRC is not able to send information or talk to you about your client without this formal authorisation.

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Allyjambo

AllyjamboPosted on9:34 pm - Sep 20, 2017


There seems to me a simple answer to whether or not HMRC could release information to the SFA about Rangers tax affairs, even if they had no powers to request details from HMRC themselves; they could have told Rangers that there would be no Euro licence for them without the necessary confirmation direct from HMRC.

I am sure HMRC would have been only too pleased to fulfil any such request, especially if it confirmed what Rangers claimed, because Champions League football for Rangers was the only way they were ever going to see the money they were owed.

Of course, if the SFA, officially, requested this confirmation from Rangers, and it was refused, then there is no way a licence could have been granted, but nods and winks are a good way of never finding out what you don’t want to know. Though they can lead to very expensive meals in posh restaurants!

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jimboPosted on9:37 pm - Sep 20, 2017


0204
let the thumbs down commence

(its only a game of football)

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Homunculus

HomunculusPosted on10:09 pm - Sep 20, 2017


ALLYJAMBO
SEPTEMBER 20, 2017 at 21:34
===========================

For me that works.

However in my opinion it is even simpler.

The SFA tell Rangers, get these documents from HMRC. Then show them to us.

If you fail to do that then we will infer you have issues with regards your social taxes and deny your application.

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jimboPosted on10:12 pm - Sep 20, 2017


I think I’ve only got about a month left on this site.  Seriously skint.  Iknow I’m rubbish on here but I love you all.  I’m going to miss you so much.  Not asking for a penny so please don’t offer.  Just want you to know I’m Ok health wise.  In fact will phone BT tomorrow to cancel.  Love you all.  Take care.

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Cluster One

Cluster OnePosted on10:29 pm - Sep 20, 2017


JIMBOSEPTEMBER 20, 2017 at 22:12
who will take up your mantle?
always enjoyed your posts,i think you always tried to keep the blog lighhearted even when some of the serious stuff was being debated

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AuldheidPosted on10:37 pm - Sep 20, 2017


Homunculus
Why is second bullet point here
https://www.gov.uk/hmrc-internal-manuals/information-disclosure-guide/idg40120 
not applicable?
However even if it’s not, the SFA could have said before granting licence give us proof of what is reported in your accounts as proof is a requirement of Art 50.
I’m only quoting what Art 43 says in terms of seeking information. It gives the power to SFA to ask as it’s a football rule. How HMRC respond is up to them under guidance at the link.

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AuldheidPosted on10:42 pm - Sep 20, 2017


Ally Jambo
The rules at Annex IX I posted tell you what the SFA have to do to obtain PROOF no overdure payable to HMRC existed.
The question is  did they?
That’s one for the Comp Off to look into.

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AuldheidPosted on10:46 pm - Sep 20, 2017


Here is what the 2nd bullet says as link appears to be generic.
Where the person or organisation that the information is about has given their consent, see IDG40310. An example could be a taxpayer who provides authorisation for an agent, accountant or other third party to receive confidential information.

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Homunculus

HomunculusPosted on10:48 pm - Sep 20, 2017


AULDHEID
SEPTEMBER 20, 2017 at 22:37
================================

I get a page not found error when I click that link I’m afraid.

Re the rest of your post, that’s kind of my point. HMRC are not bound by football rules. They are not going to breach taxpayers confidentiality because football rules allow the SFA to ask them a question. 

They would be breaching the DPA if they just provided material to the Police or Crown Office without a proper legal gateway. They are certainly not just going to do it because a sporting association made the request. 

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Homunculus

HomunculusPosted on10:52 pm - Sep 20, 2017


AULDHEID
SEPTEMBER 20, 2017 at 22:46
==============================

I don’t know how many times I have said that. If Rangers, or anyone else gives HMRC the authority to release the information then I see no issue with it.

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John ClarkPosted on12:05 am - Sep 21, 2017


Drat, and double drat! ( who was it that used to say that? )

I had a nice wee post ready for posting, then lost internet connection.And fiddling about trying to restore connection, I lost the post. 

The guts of it : KPMG was cleared of failing to twig that HBOS’s number was up.

The Parliamentary Treasury committee Chair has said ” When it publishes its detailed report next month, the [Parliamentary committee] will expect the Financial Reporting Council to provide a full explanation of its decision not to take further action against KPMG”

In an opinion piece in today’s ‘The Scotsman’ this is said:
” Maybe it is simply as KPMG said yesterday that the implosion of HBOS and other examples of corporate failure and fraud over the past decade ‘ have highlighted a gap between what society expects of an audit and what an audit has been designed to do’.
“Quite so. But it does make you wonder, if a putative rigorous audit could not result in HBOS being called out before its collapse how many more less egregious examples are out there of superficial audits that fail, even in good faith, to locate the smoking gun”

By an extraordinarily serendipitous newspaper page lay-out, immediately under this piece is a completely unrelated little piece about a chap being held without charge in the United Arab Emirates.

The headline is ” Grant Thornton partner detained”

I smiled as I remembered  that Grant Thornton were the auditors of RFC(IL).

And at the recollection that  RFC(IL) protested that in their annual returns they had reported the use of EBTs’!

And I idly wondered whether the audits by Grant Thornton of RFC(IL) accounts might conceivably be seen as falling into the category of ‘less egregious examples..of audits that fail, even in good faith,to locate the smoking gun’

But that was just me: and I am not a whatever-is-the-descriptor of the job of deciding  how the items on a newspaper page are to be juxtaposed.

And I sympathise with anyone held without charge anywhere.

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Allyjambo

AllyjamboPosted on7:52 am - Sep 21, 2017


HomunculusSeptember 20, 2017 at 22:09   
ALLYJAMBOSEPTEMBER 20, 2017 at 21:34===========================For me that works.However in my opinion it is even simpler.The SFA tell Rangers, get these documents from HMRC. Then show them to us.If you fail to do that then we will infer you have issues with regards your social taxes and deny your application.
________________________

I agree that’s how it should be, but I, personally, and I know it’s with hindsight, wouldn’t trust Craig Whyte to provide the genuine article (despite his not guilty verdict – doesn’t make him an honest man), nor would I trust either Rangers!

But really, my point was that, in these circumstances, the ball is in the SFA’s court, and they can demand any club, once they know HMRC are/have been investigating/chasing them, to provide whatever documentary evidence they want., or that club doesn’t get what that club wants.
_______________________________

AuldheidSeptember 20, 2017 at 22:42   
Ally JamboThe rules at Annex IX I posted tell you what the SFA have to do to obtain PROOF no overdure payable to HMRC existed.The question is  did they?That’s one for the Comp Off to look into.
________________________

My post was more or less a case of belt and braces, Auldheid, pointing out that there is/was really no impediment to gaining documentary proof of Rangers’ tax affairs, regardless of what rules are in place, or whatever caveats might exist to allow the SFA an excuse not to take action. All that was required was for the SFA to be acting in upmost good faith towards the other member clubs.

To me, this would be a killer point/question (there will be a few others) for any truly independent inquiry to make, that would show, at the very least, that the SFA were incompetent, and probably wilfully so. It should also draw into question the idea that the SFA rely on their member clubs to act with that ‘upmost good faith’ when completing documents like the Euro licence application once they have knowledge of an HMRC (or any other government body) investigation of that club’s business affairs. Not because such an investigation would show the possibility of a lack of ‘good faith’ (though it might) within the boardroom of that club, just a case of good old ‘belt and braces’.

Of course, any incompetence becomes undoubtedly wilful once we bring in the question of what action did the SFA take once the Sheriff Officers arrived at Ibrox? If they couldn’t work out that they’d been lied to at that point…

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bad capt madmanPosted on9:01 am - Sep 21, 2017


John Clark-
I’ll jump in first, content in the pleasure of knowing something you forgot. Drat and double drat is of course Dick Dardardly’s catchphrase. 
Fitting, you might say, to the whole SFA/RFC farrago.

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SmugasPosted on9:44 am - Sep 21, 2017


Dastardly.

sheeesh sheeesh sheeesh sheeesh (that was Mutley by the way)

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wottpiPosted on9:56 am - Sep 21, 2017


ALLYJAMBOSEPTEMBER 21, 2017 at 07:52

We can talk about confidentiality and good faith with regards to the operations of the SFA and member clubs  all we want but one also has to look at the bigger picture.

As discussed previously the SFA is an organisation that has shown no mercy to lower league clubs where the club’s administration function is probably being carried out on a voluntary and part-time basis.

In such cases genuine administrative errors have been made and papers submitted by member clubs in good faith. Issues such as incorrect player registrations have had no major effect on the outcome of a game.Yet the ‘rules are rules’ mantra has been applied by the SFA and offenses have been punished by exclusion from competitions and fines that hit a small club very hard.

However we are to believe that a persons, such as Dickson and others, at Ibrox with years of well paid, full time football administrative experience at one the country’s largest club and sitting on SFA licensing committees where they should be more than aware of the rules, regulations and requirements than anyone in the game can be let of the hook with a nod and a wink.

If all is above board then open the papers up for public scrutiny. What is there to hide?

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bad capt madmanPosted on10:27 am - Sep 21, 2017


Dickson Dastardly?
Dastardly Dickson? 
Not forgetting The Scunner Campbell (Ogilvie) 
The villains of the piece need memorable names

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Billy BoycePosted on11:27 am - Sep 21, 2017


I see that the SFA is recruiting for a commercial director:

” . . . With revenue growth central to the successful delivery of their strategy, the Scottish FA are seeking an experienced and ambitious Commercial Director who will lead and direct all activities across sponsorship, retail, ticketing, business development and broadcasting. Overseeing a broad and influential portfolio and as one of the 4 members of the Operational Board, you will directly contribute to both the strategic and operational decision making process . . . “

Can you imagine some one like Regan heading the panel that determines whether the candidate has all the right attributes required by the governing body?  I would still like to know how Regan himself was headhunted for the top job and who the members of his interview board were.

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causaludendiPosted on11:41 am - Sep 21, 2017


http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/amp/football/41347060

I can see no mention of the term “O** F***”…?
??

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tearsofjoyPosted on12:22 pm - Sep 21, 2017


I’m struggling to see why the UK national anthem riles (some ) Scots. It isn’t anti Scottish, Scotland/the Scots don’t get a mention and as for a folk song , that dirge Scotland has adopted ? I don’t like it, never have but why people see what they do in itis beyond me.

But to the meat of the matter, that irresistible force : sectarian singing. The hypocracy that surrounds Celtic on this matter is staggering and the number of CFC fans that take the moral high ground on this matter equally so. CFC fan sing pro IRA songs – we all know it, we’ve all heard it. So let’s stop pretending otherwise. 

The clubs have voted to exempt themselves from punishment by the footballing authorities , so quite clearly they don’t care. The police cannot and never will deal with this effectively. Let’s stop pretending we are outrgaed by this – we are not because if we were we’d be shouting from the rooftops about it. So, it goes on, and on , as it ever will. That truly is “Scotland’s Shame”.

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Allyjambo

AllyjamboPosted on12:34 pm - Sep 21, 2017


tearsofjoySeptember 21, 2017 at 12:22

I’m struggling to see why the UK national anthem riles (some ) Scots. It isn’t anti Scottish, Scotland/the Scots don’t get a mention…
_______________________ 

Clearly you have never heard this verse of the ‘British’ National Anthem!

‘Lord grant that Marshal Wade May by thy mighty aid Victory bring. May he sedition hush, And like a torrent rush, Rebellious Scots to crush.God save the King!’

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Homunculus

HomunculusPosted on1:29 pm - Sep 21, 2017


The SPFL have scrapped plans to hold an independent review into the way Scottish football handled the non-payment of taxes by clubs in the aftermath of the recent and binding Supreme Court judgment against Rangers’ liquidators BDO.

http://www.scotsman.com/sport/football/competitions/premiership/disappointed-spfl-ditches-plan-for-independent-review-into-taxes-1-4566258

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billyj1Posted on1:39 pm - Sep 21, 2017


SPFL have just shown themselves to be as incompetent as the SFA. Time for Judicial Review.

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easyJamboPosted on1:54 pm - Sep 21, 2017


The full SPFL statement
https://spfl.co.uk/news/article/spfl-board-statement/

The SPFL Board is disappointed in the Scottish FA’s decision not to participate in an independent review.

The SPFL Board still believes that an independent review, promoted jointly by the Scottish FA and SPFL, would have resulted in a better understanding of the procedures and processes adopted by football’s governing bodies. Such a review would also have enabled any lessons learned to be implemented for the future benefit of the game in Scotland.

SPFL Chairman Murdoch MacLennan commented: “The SPFL Board has been clear that any meaningful review would have had to be carried out in association with the Scottish FA and with the full and active co-operation of both organisations.

“The SPFL Board has therefore concluded that it cannot, by itself, take forward an effective independent review.” 

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Homunculus

HomunculusPosted on2:02 pm - Sep 21, 2017


It’s looking more and more like it’s down to Celtic to push this matter. If they don’t it would appear to be done and dusted. 

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StevieBC

StevieBCPosted on2:41 pm - Sep 21, 2017


HOMUNCULUS
SEPTEMBER 21, 2017 at 14:02
It’s looking more and more like it’s down to Celtic to push this matter. If they don’t it would appear to be done and dusted.
=======================

Now that both the SFA & SPFL have said, “Just naw”…

The options seem to be limited to;

– the CFC reps resign from both the SFA & SPFL

and/or

– CFC publicly backs a JR ?

or

– CFC says “we tried” and promotes “let’s now move on”.

No easy choice.

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Allyjambo

AllyjamboPosted on3:48 pm - Sep 21, 2017


It is worth noting, I think, that just as no one has said that there is no grounds for a review because (they believe) no wrongs were committed, the SPFL have not backed down from their stance that an independent review is desirable.

Basically it remains, there is to be no review because the people who might be caught out in some wrongdoing don’t want it!

The song, ‘Self Preservation Society’ is going on in my head right now.

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bad capt madmanPosted on5:29 pm - Sep 21, 2017


In addition to a JR, and assuming no fan group want to financially harm their clubs, then boycotts of / complaints to SFA and SPFL sponsors might be a way to go. Money talks, and some organisations value their credibility. Not all of them, unfortunately.

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tony

tonyPosted on6:08 pm - Sep 21, 2017


TEARSOFJOY
But to the meat of the matter, that irresistible force : sectarian singing. The hypocracy that surrounds Celtic on this matter is staggering and the number of CFC fans that take the moral high ground on this matter equally so. CFC fan sing pro IRA songs – we all know it, we’ve all heard it. So let’s stop pretending otherwise.
IRA songs are not sectarian

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Cluster One

Cluster OnePosted on7:30 pm - Sep 21, 2017


if the review was to be independent  why does the review need the SPFL and the SFA’ participation?
The SPFL and the SFA would just tell lies to the review anyway.Just keep both bodies away from any independent review,that way it is totaly independent.

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upthehoopsPosted on7:49 pm - Sep 21, 2017


HOMUNCULUSSEPTEMBER 21, 2017 at 14:02  
It’s looking more and more like it’s down to Celtic to push this matter. If they don’t it would appear to be done and dusted. 

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

Many people predicted this outcome. Strange how a club who did nothing wrong can find itself so isolated while the wrongdoers have the wagons circled around them. Personally I think it is shameful that if there ARE other clubs out there who do want a review, that they won’t publicly state it.  Instead they will be left with people governing the game who know they have a free run to do anything they want. When I say that of course I mean do anything to help the club from Ibrox, whether the rules permit it or not. The rest of the clubs had better realise one missing detail on a registration form could see those whose cause they champion throwing them out of a competition, while the club from Ibrox will never be treated the same way. 

What an utterly incredible situation. 

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AuldheidPosted on8:39 pm - Sep 21, 2017


A repost from CQN for those trying to separate one enquiry from another. 
Folks
 
 
 
In a chat with another well kent blogger he made the point about mixed messages on all matters Rangers/ebts/SFA etc and if any evidence were needed of the effect of that mix it’s right here on CQN.
 
 
 
Now listen carefully, I’ll say this only once (no I’ll not because it will get lost in the chatter but here goes).
 
 
 
There were THREE separate avenues open that have now been reduced to TWO.
 
 
 
The one gone is an enquiry in which both SFA and SPFL would have participated to look at how both handled the fallout of Rangers use of ebts. The SFA will not play ball because they know that they would come out of such a review so badly the SFA could not survive in its present form.
 
 
 
A Judicial Review is NOTHING to do with Celtic officially. They might want it but they will not finance it because they are members of the organisations that would be under scrutiny and are bound by SFA and SPFL rules not to shit in their own nest. That finance has come from supporters who have the money and will to fund a JR.
 
 
 
It is paying for the exploratory work done so far to establish if there is a case, how it might be brought and possible outcomes.
 
 
 
If those three ducks are in a positive row the case will cost mega bucks and will require crowd funding. So it’s a wait and see but those involved in the exploration have been making positive noises.
 
 
 
Number THREE (now TWO) is good ol Res12 which is shorthand for investigating the granting and monitoring of the UEFA Licence by the SFA in 2011.
 
 
For 4 years the SFA have been stalling on a proper investigation but have been forced by the power of the evidence with which they were presented as a result of the work of the Res12ers, to admit something was rotten in the state of Hampden.
 
 
 
Res12ers have serious reservations about the conduct of any SFA led enquiry for obvious reasons: SFA were party to the process, have known for some time where the bodies lie but done SFA, made public statements at odds with the truth, have misled journalists via their Head of Communication ( E Tims should have more to report tomorrow on that) and the Compliance Officer in post is the chap who failed to deal appropriately with information supplied from 2014.
 
 
 
If the SFA or indeed Celtic let this investigation proceed solely under the SFA umbrella then Regan has won and Peter Lawwell has lost.
 
 
 
There will be more detail into next week on why an SFA only investigation is unacceptable but as matters stand it is vital all Celtic supporters in the know and shareholders get behind PL and let him know they want him to ensure this UEFA licence investigation answers all the questions about how RFC were able to lie to obtain a licence whilst the SFA stood by and watched, then tried to cover up after Sherriff Officers made it public something was wrong when they called to collect an overdue payable that SFA decided wasn’t.
 
 
 
An investigation must also cover Regan’s part in the delay from when Res12 was first tabled in Nov 2013 to recent announcement of the investigation.
 
 
 
He is either negligent, incompetent or complicit and a JR can use what emerges from a proper investigation into the UEFA licence if a JR does proceed.

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easyJamboPosted on9:06 pm - Sep 21, 2017


Auldheid September 21, 2017 at 20:39
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Auldheid – If the SFA seek to go it alone on the Res 12 issue, what would be the possibility of seeking permission, on behalf of fans/shareholders of all clubs, to present the evidence that you have, and request that you are allowed through your legal representatives to question witnesses in front of the judicial panel. I know it’s a long shot, but consider the following:

If allowed, it would at least provide the transparency that we all want, regardless of the outcome. 

If it is not allowed, and the result defies all reasonable logic, then would the judicial panel’s decision not lend itself to a future judicial review in isolation.  In such a scenario, it would appear to me that the decision could be challenged on the basis of not considering all the information available to it, or witnesses evidence not being subject to scrutiny. I believe that a representative group of shareholders from multiple clubs would represent a group of people who were directly impacted by the 2011 licensing decision.     

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theredpillPosted on9:21 pm - Sep 21, 2017


HOMUNCULUSSEPTEMBER 21, 2017 at 14:02 12 0 Rate This
It’s looking more and more like it’s down to Celtic to push this matter. If they don’t it would appear to be done and dusted.
HOMUNCULUS 
Call me yee of little faith but St Peter is not going to push this I can’t help thinking that he is playing to the fans and doing different in private. Hope I am wrong.

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nawlitePosted on10:17 pm - Sep 21, 2017


I see from the new Twitter box below (you know, the one that so irked JC, lol) that Tom English is suggesting that “If SPFL really wants transparency then let them press ahead with their own review of how the old SPL acted in this saga.” Tom, I’m led to believe that you look in here and, if so, here’s a suggestion for you. Remember, you’re a journalist, Tom. I know that there is a need for a review just by sitting in my room reading this site and debating both here and with others what is going on and what it might mean. You, as a journalist choose to sit scared in your room and do the modern equivalent of shouting oot the windae!
Tom, if you think the SPFL should review their own failings in respect of Rangers you’re in the privileged position of being able to suggest it to them direct. As a journalist you have access to those involved, more so than anyone on here has. Given your tweet, you clearly know there’s something rotten in Scottish football governance, but rather than use the benefits and opportunities afforded you by your position, you send out wee daft tweets in the hope that some of us might think you’re crusading, but not put your head on the block as the guy who hassled the authorities face to face.
Tom, ask Neil Doncaster/the SPFL boards to review their failings in respect of Rangers. If they say there’s no need, start with LNS and ask why McKenzie of the SPFL accepted so meekly Bryson’s ‘improperly registered but eligible’ invention. If they say there was no available evidence to challenge the SFA’s ‘expert’, ask how Rangers’ improper registrations differed from those in the Legia Warsaw case or any Scottish club thrown out of an SFA competition for missing signatures etc.  If they say Rangers can’t be sanctioned because of the delay in discovering the improper registrations, ask them how that differs from those other cases, where the improper registrations came to light only AFTER the game has been played (otherwise the SFA would be lauded for alerting member clubs to potential errors beforehand!). If they say Rangers can’t be sanctioned due to the number of years until discovery unlike those cases which are usually discovered after a day or two, ask them to point out the section in SFA or SPFL rules where a timebar for improper registration is stated. 
Ffs, Tom, these obvious, simple questions are Journalism 101. I’ve identified them sitting in my room. With your investigative skills, you must be able to identify more complex, hidden issues and ask better questions about these too.
You choose not to and it is my turn to ask… why? Are you scared of fan retribution? Are you scared of upsetting some people who could make your job more difficult by refusing you the access you need to write/comment on non-confrontational issues? The key question you and I must ask, Tom, is what type of journalist you want to be – the one who wants to write articles about the weekly merry-go-round of Scottish football which is easy as it happens every week or the one who actually reports on the BIGGEST issue the sport has ever faced even though you might rub some (a lot!) people the wrong way.
Ffs, Tom, grow a pair and do the right thing! 

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Homunculus

HomunculusPosted on10:34 pm - Sep 21, 2017


THEREDPILL
SEPTEMBER 21, 2017 at 21:21
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St Peter?

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