Whose assets are they anyway?

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Good Morning. If you haven’t yet seen it, I heartily recommend …

Comment on Whose assets are they anyway? by TheClumpany.

Good Morning.

If you haven’t yet seen it, I heartily recommend this Revisionist Spectacular from Keith McLeod in today’s Record.
Former Rangers owner Craig Whyte does yet ANOTHER disappearing act – failing to attend court as he is declared bankrupt

It contains the following lines:

“Whyte bought Rangers from Sir David Murray for £1. But the deal in 2011 included a clause that he must settle Rangers’ debt to Lloyds Banking Group of around £18 million.
When Whyte took over, questions were raised by fans about his personal wealth. But his PR company tried to stop the debate by saying: “Describe him as a billionaire”.
The Daily Record snared Whyte when we revealed that the cash to settle the debt had been raised through mortgaging future season ticket sales to Ticketus.”

It completely fails to mention that the Record gleefully ran with the ‘billionaire’ line and arguably did Rangers fans a huge disservice!

And then there is this…

“Rangers went into administration in February 2012 and the company running the club were consigned to liquidation on June 14 of the same year.
The club’s business and assets were sold to a consortium fronted by Charles Green for £5.5 million and the team continued playing, resuming in the Scottish Third Division.”

Company running the club? Resuming?
Oh dear!
I sometimes wonder if folk in the media are simply utterly brazen, or think we are too stupid to see through this nonsense!
Enjoy the rest of the day.

The Clumpany (still churning out the blogs over on https://theclumpany.wordpress.com/)

TheClumpany Also Commented

Whose assets are they anyway?
Good Morning.
The Clumpany has written to Celtic Football Club about the ‘Big Tax Case’.
It will be interesting to see whether I get a reply. Other fans (including those of other clubs) may wish to think about writing in similar terms.
Enjoy the rest of the day.

The Clumpany
[Still blogging over at https://theclumpany.wordpress.com/]

Dear Mr Lawwell.
I wanted to express my grave concern about the outcome and implications of the so-called ‘Rangers Big Tax Case’.
Assuming that the judgement in favour of HMRC is not appealed and overturned by the UK Supreme Court, then the implication is that Celtic and the rest of Scottish Football were playing in a rigged game for the best part of a decade. One of the competitors had a colossal unfair advantage by being able to employ players on the back of not paying the tax due on their wages.
This meant that myself and thousands of others were unwittingly paying millions of pounds into a grotesque parody of sport. It meant we were most likely deprived of more happy memories and wonderful trophy-winning days. It also meant that the strategy and investment of Celtic’s Board on behalf of its shareholders was being systematically undermined by ‘questionable’ methods.
And it stinks.
I don’t doubt that the outcome of the previous Lord Nimmo-Smith Commission into side-letters will muddy the waters in some way (and may be used by some in a spurious ‘double-jeopardy’-based argument for taking no action). However, let us be clear: confirmation of players being employed without paying due tax is something new. And something that needs to be considered by proper inquiry and disciplinary processes.
Should the SFA and SPFL fail to take action it will be a shameful admission that the concept of sport counts for very little in Scottish football. There will be no moral hazard and no justice for all of us who love the game and who were misled for the best part of a decade.
As the Chief Executive of Celtic, I hope you are making the strongest possible representations to the SFA and SPFL (and if necessary UEFA) over the issue of Rangers’ apparently stolen titles and trophies. I also hope that you are speaking to other clubs to build a groundswell of support in favour of disciplinary action being taken.
As members of the SFA and SPFL Boards, I hope that you and Eric Riley will vote in favour of the instigation of disciplinary proceedings against Rangers. I note that the current incarnation of the Ibrox club maintains that the Big Tax Case outcome has nothing to do with them, while still proclaiming that they are the proud owners of 54 titles and numerous other trophies. This obfuscation cannot be allowed to stand in the way of justice being done, and being seen to be done.
I have written a summary of what the Big Tax Case ruling means to fans of all Scottish Clubs,which you can read here https://theclumpany.wordpress.com/2015/11/04/the-biggest-lie-of-all/
I have no doubt that many fans of all clubs will vote with their feet and wallets if Rangers (IL)’s apparent systematic cheating is not addressed ‘without fear or favour’.
I know I will. Because it would mean that the game is utterly worthless.
Thank you for your time.

Whose assets are they anyway?
Good Morning.
If you have a few moments to spare, take a look at this ‘column’ from Derek Johnstone in the Evening Shark-Jump. The single most ridiculous and ill-informed thing I have read about EBTs and the Big Tax Case. It is truly appalling stuff. Printed without a hint of clarification or alternative perspectives by the ‘newspaper’…
Dear me! Enjoy the rest of the day.
The Clumpany
[Still blogging over at https://theclumpany.wordpress.com/]

Whose assets are they anyway?
Good Evening.
I wouldn’t normally do this but I am pasting my latest blog in its entirety below as I think it might be of interest to the SFM community. It relates to today’s judgement in favour of HMRC, which I see has caught your attention!
The Clumpany
Good Evening.
The picture in this piece is a pretty ordinary one, but it represents something very substantial.
It is (obviously) a football. And the chances are that if you saw one of many Rangers players kick one during the first decade of this century, you were being lied to.
And if you saw a player in another Scottish side kicking a ball in a competition involving the late Rangers Football Club you were also being lied to.
Thousands of passes. Hundreds of goals. Dozens of tournaments.
All a lie.
And if you invested a single penny or shred of emotion in Scottish football during that period you were being cheated.
Because the implication of today’s victory for HMRC in the Big Tax Case (assuming there is no successful appeal at the Supreme Court) is that Rangers (IL) fielded players they couldn’t otherwise afford by using payment schemes on which due tax went unpaid.
As today’s judgement says
“Furthermore, so far as the footballers are concerned, at least, it seems to us that if bonuses had not been paid they might well have taken their services elsewhere. We realise that the fifth respondent [RFC 2012] was in, potentially, a difficult financial position, competing for good players in an international market where other countries may not have the same rigorous approach to taxation as the United Kingdom. Nevertheless, the law is clear: the payments made in respect of footballers were in our view derived from their employment and thus the payments were emoluments or earnings.”
While Rangers were doing this, other clubs took expensive care to render into Caesar what was Caesar’s.
You might say that these clubs were at a completely unfair disadvantage as Rangers hoovered up more of the trophies that apparently made them the ‘World’s Most Successful Club’ (sic).
How does that make you feel?
It makes me feel rather pissed off that for the best part of a decade our wonderful game seems to have been a lie. All those goals, all those matches, and all those tournaments.
The reaction of many fans today has been to demand that action is initiated to examine what happened during that decade, and have the option of title stripping on the table.
And they are absolutely right to do this. The implications of the HMRC victory raise too many questions about the very worth and integrity of our game to be swept under the carpet.
The SFA must institute an independent inquiry or process to get to the bottom of the matter, and consider whether sanctions are merited. These issues were most certainly not resolved by the SPL-sponsored Lord Nimmo Smith Commission which looked into the use of side letters.
The game needs to be cleansed, and no stone should be left unturned. Only then can we all try and move on.
Voices are already being raised in the media, questioning the need to go over this ground.
This piece by Graham Spiers rightly calls out Rangers’ cheating and the stain it will always leave on their memory, but then goes on to say
“The judgement of illegal activity by Rangers – if or when this saga is concluded – will leave an ungodly mess to be sorted.
The club paid the ultimate price in 2012 – liquidation. That event has left Scottish football poisoned, with acrimonious debate about Rangers’ history going into overdrive in recent years. But the “newco Rangers” – whatever your interpretation of that – will not be financially affected.”
“A guilty Rangers – if this is the end of the matter – also leaves the Scottish FA in a precarious position. Retrospective title-stripping looks a futile business to me, but it goes on in other sports, and the SFA stand accused of being timorous in the face of the wrongdoing.
Is title-stripping an option? Yes, it is, though I wouldn’t assent to it. The misdeeds have been done, and Rangers FC paid a high price.
What is to be gained in trampling back over history and spearing a liquidated football club with further punishment? There always will be an asterisk in the public mind beside these dodgy Rangers years. I cannot see the benefit in the retrospective expunging of trophies.”
Well that’s all well and good Graham, but the current Ibrox entity continues to maintain that it IS Rangers, and clings to the titles that were apparently stolen from Scottish football. And that doesn’t sit right with me and many others.
Are we seriously meant to buy the fiction that

  • a liquidated company ran a scheme on which tax should have been paid,
  • to maximise its player budget,
  • which an ethereal ‘club’ then used to win trophies that can’t fairly be stripped?

Aye. Right.
Personally, I find it difficult to believe the SFA will do anything other than try and avoid instituting a process which might remove trophies from Rangers, and which risks incurring the displeasure of Sevco fans.
But we have seen a similar movie before. Back in 2012, Heaven and Earth was moved by the authorities to try and place new club Sevco in the top two tiers of the game. The ‘No to Newco’ campaign brought fans of many clubs together to stand against gerrymandering and protect the integrity of our game.
I suspect that something similar may now be required if the SFA is to be persuaded to take action in response to today’s judgement.
And that means politely pestering the boards of our clubs to say that we are not prepared to see the SFA washing its hands of this mess.
All our clubs.
Not just Celtic. Because if Celtic tried to act alone (and I doubt they would), it instantly becomes portrayed as an ‘Old Firm’ (sic) issue, and therefore a pantomime.
Think about it.
And if you conclude that our game deserves better than the epic lie of the previous decade, and if you believe that wrongs ought to be set right, why not contact your club to let them know?
There’s no time like the present.

Recent Comments by TheClumpany

Small Price to Pay?
Good Afternoon.

Just to say I really enjoyed the podcast with David Low. Great stuff. 


Small Price to Pay?
BIG PINKMARCH 12, 2017 at 16:13
Ah Sorry Big Pink I see you beat me to it!

Small Price to Pay?
Good Afternoon.

If you haven’t yet seen it, do take a moment to look at the Record’s shameful article/tweets about the Celtic ballgirl who allegedly swore at Sevco players after their goal today. It’s disgraceful stuff which risks making her a target for the lunatics. Links herein. https://theclumpany.wordpress.com/2017/03/12/please-help-to-name-and-shame/

But do come back here to debate the issues! ?



Small Price to Pay?
UPTHEHOOPSFEBRUARY 28, 2017 at 07:10
Sportsound was another joy to behold last night.
Great post! They seem not to even care that the show often resembles a Sevco fans’ podcast.  Endless earnest discussion about the latest manoeuvrings as if they were talking about a military campaign, and ALL based on the assumption that the latest Ibrox outfit is the same entity, with the same “success”, status and expectation of dominance as its pre-2012 predecessor. You will never hear a conversation about Sevco on any radio or TV programme which is thoroughly grounded in the reality of that basket case’s true position. A large part of the audience doesn’t want to hear such blasphemous talk and the pundits certainly doesn’t want to be the ones to utter it. Meanwhile the rest of us are left hanging.
Still, it entertains in a “cringe-making” sort of a way!
I had a bit of fun imagining the implications for Sportsound and Kenny Macintrye if Barry Ferguson ever got the Sevco manager’s job. If anyone wants to look it it is here. https://theclumpany.wordpress.com/2017/02/26/barry-ferguson-sevco-manager/
Keep up the good work!

Peace – Not War
…and those of us with an interest in Resolution 12 will marvel at the sight of the SFA taking an interest in the detail of whether an Ibrox-based entity should get a UEFA licence…

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