Why the Beast of Armageddon Failed to Show?

ByTrisidium

Why the Beast of Armageddon Failed to Show?

A Blog for Scottish Football Monitor by Stuart Cosgrove

At the height of summer of discontent I was asked to contribute to a BBC radio show with Jim Traynor and Jim Spence. ‘Armageddon’ had just been pronounced and if the media were to be believed Scotland was about to freeze over in a new ice-age: only a cold darkness lay ahead.

To get the radio-show off to a healthy and pretentious start I began by saying that Scottish football was experiencing an “epistemological break”. It was an in-joke with Jim Spence, who I have known since we were both teenage ‘suedeheads.’ I was a mouthy young St Johnstone fan and Jim was an Arabian sand-dancer. But even in those distant days, we shared a mutual distrust of the ‘old firm’ and in our separate ways wanted a better future for our clubs. We both grew up to become products of the fanzine era, Jim as a writer for Dundee United’s ‘The Final Hurdle’ and me as a staff writer for the NME. Without ever having to say it, we had both engaged in a guerrilla-war against what Aberdeen’s Willie Miller once characterised as “West Coast Bias”.

The term ‘epistemological break’ was shamelessly borrowed from French Marxist philosophy. It means a fundamental change in the way we construct and receive knowledge and although I used it on air as a wind-up to test Spencey’s significantly less-reliable Dundee schooling, deep down I meant it.

Social Media has proved to be one of the greatest disruptions in the history of the football supporter – greater than the brake clubs of the 19th century, the football specials on the 1970s; or the fanzine movement of the post-punk era. The pace of change in the way we send, receive and interrogate information has been so dynamic that it has wrong-footed administrators, asset strippers and sports journalists, alike. No matter who you support we are living through media history.

2012 had just witnessed an unprecedented summer of sport. The Olympics provided a snapshot of how sudden and pervasive the shift to social media has become. Over 40% of UK adults claim to have posted comments on websites, blogs or social networking about the Olympics and in younger age-groups that figure tips conclusively to a majority – 61% of 16-24’s posted Olympic comments. Think about that figure for a moment. Well over half of the young people in the UK are now participants in social media and pass comment on sport. The genie is out of the bottle and it will never be forced back. That is the main reason that Armageddon never happened: we no longer live in an age where the media can guarantee our compliance.

On the first day of the 2012-13-season, Rangers were in the deep throes of administration and facing certain liquidation. With no accounts to meet the criteria for SPL membership, one among a body of rules which the old Rangers had themselves been an architect of, the new Rangers could not be granted entry without a wholesale abandonment of the rules. It was not to be.

St Johnstone launched their new season at Tynecastle so I travelled with misplaced hope. We were soundly beaten 2-0 and both Hearts goals were entirely merited. On the day, I did a quick if unscientific survey of two supporters’ buses – the Barossa Saints Club, a more traditional lads-bus and the ‘208 Ladies’ a predominantly female and family-friendly bus. On both buses, over 75% of fans had mobile phones with 3G internet access and the majority of them posted updates or pictures before, during or after the match. They mostly posted via micro-blogging sites such as Facebook or Twitter, many commenting on the game, their day-out and the surroundings. Most were speaking to friends or rival fans. Some were publishing pictures and updating forums or blogs. And when he second a decisive goal went in some were undoubtedly taking stick from Gort, Webby DFC and DeeForLife, the pseudonyms of prominent Dundee fans, who as the newly promoted ‘Club 12’ were suddenly and very temporarily above St Johnstone in the SPL.

By my rough calculations, well over half the St Johnstone support was web-connected. I have no reason to think the Hearts supporters were any different. This small experiment reflects an unprecedented shift in the balance of communication in Scottish football and in the truest sense it is an ‘epistemological break’ with past forms of spectatorship. Social media has been widely misrepresented by old-style radio ‘phone-ins’ and by journalism’s ancien regime. The presumption is that people who are connected to the web are at home, in dingy rooms where they foam at the mouth frustrated by loneliness and mental illness. The term ‘internet bampots’ (coined by Hugh Keevins) and ‘keyboard warriors’ (Gordon Strachan) speaks to a world that is fearful of the web, irked by alternative opinions, and the threat that the new media poses to the traditional exchange of knowledge.

It further assumes that opinion from social networks is naïve, ill-informed, or unreasonable. Whilst some of this may be true, mostly it is not. No one would dispute that there are small enclaves of truly despicable people using social networks and comment sites, but they are overwhelmingly outnumbered by the multitude of fans who simply want to talk about their team and share their dreams and memories.

Social media is porous. By that I mean it has cracks, lacunae and fissures. This inevitably means that information leaks out. It can be shared, released and in some cases becomes so energetic it becomes a virus. It is no longer possible to ‘keep secrets’, to withhold information and to allow indiscretions to pass unnoticed. Newspapers have been caught in a whirlwind of change where views can be instantly challenged, authority quickly questioned and pronouncements easily disproved. Many papers – almost all in decline – have been forced to close down their comments forums. Undoubtedly some of that is due to breaches of the rules, the cost of moderation, and the rise in awareness of hate crimes. But another significant factor is that ordinary fans were consistently challenging the opinions and ‘facts’ that newspapers published.

Talking down to fans no longer works and we now have evidence – Armageddon did not happen. The beast that was supposed to devour us all was a toothless fantasy. In the more abrasive language of the terraces – Armageddon shat-it and didn’t turn up.

In one respect the myth of Armageddon was an entirely predictable one. Tabloid newspapers make money from scaring people – health scares, prisoners on the run, fear of terrorism, anxiety about young people, and most recently ‘fear’ of Scottish independence is their stock in trade. Almost every major subject is raised as a spectre to be fearful of. Most newspapers were desperate to ‘save Rangers’ since they themselves feared the consequences of losing even more readership. It was easier to argue that a hideous financial catastrophe would befall Scottish football unless Rangers were fast-tracked back into the SPL. Newspapers found common cause with frightened administrators who could not imagine a world without Rangers, either.

So we were invited to endorse one of the greatest circumlocutions of all time – unless you save a club that has crashed leaving millions of pounds of debt, the game is financially doomed. You would struggle to encounter this bizarre logic in any other walk of life. Unless Rick Astley brings out a new album music will die. That is what they once argued and many still do. That is how desperately illogical the leadership in Scottish football had become.

Armageddon was a tissue of inaccuracies from the outset. It tried to script a disaster-movie of chaotic failure and financial disaster and at the very moment when senior administrators should have been fighting for the livelihood of the league, they were briefing against their own business.

Armageddon was a big inarticulate beast but it faced a mightier opponent – facts. One by one the clubs published their annual accounts. Although this was against the backdrop of a double-dip recession and fiercely difficult economic circumstances it was not all doom and gloom. The arrival of Club 12 (Dundee) meant higher crowds and the potential for increased income at Aberdeen, Dundee United and St Johnstone. To this day, this simple fact remains unfathomable to many people in the Glasgow-dominated media. The arrival of Ross County meant an exciting new top-tier local derby for Inverness Caley Thistle and a breath of fresh air for the SPL. St Johnstone insisted on the first ever SPL meeting outside Glasgow to reflect the new northern and eastern geo-politics of the Scottish game.

European football meant new income streams for Motherwell. Of course times were tight, football is never free from the ravages of the economy and some clubs predictably showed trading losses. But the underlying reasons were always idiosyncratic and inconsistent never consistent across the board. Inverness had an unprecedented spate of injuries and over-shot their budgets for healthcare and so published a loss £378,000.

Meanwhile Dundee United published healthy accounts having sold David Goodwillie to Blackburn. Celtic reached the Champion’s League group stages with all the new wealth it will bequeath. St Johnstone – led by the ultra-cautious Brown family – had already cut the cost of their squad, bidding farewell to the most expensive players Francisco Sandaza and Lee Croft. The club also benefited from compensation for their departed manager, Derek McInnes and player-coach, Jody Morris. Paradoxically, Bristol City had proven to be more important to the club’s income than Rangers. Again this was not part of the script and proved unfathomable (or more accurately irrelevant) to most in the Glasgow media.

Hearts failed to pay players on time due to serious restraints on squad costs and internal debt. They were duly punished for their repeated misdemeanours. Motherwell and St Mirren despite the economic challenges were navigating different concepts of fan ownership. By November most clubs – with the exception of Celtic – were showing increased SPL attendance on the previous season. Far from the scorched earth failure that we were told was inevitable what has emerged is a more complex eco-system of financial management, in which local dynamics and a more mature cost-efficient reality was being put in place.

It may well be that Armageddon was the last desperate caricature of a form of media that was already in terminal decline. Flash back to 1967 when Scottish football had a so-called ‘golden age’. There was European success, we tamed England at Wembley and names like Law and Baxter brightened dark nights. Back then access to knowledge was a very narrow funnel. Only a small cadre of privileged journalists had access to the managers and players, and so fans waited dutifully for the Daily Record to arrive at their door to tell them what was happening. That system of ‘elite access to knowledge’ was in its last decadent throes nearly thirty years later, when David Murray would dispense wisdom to his favoured journalists. We now know they drank fine wine and ate succulent lamb in Jersey and the most loyal attended Murray’s 50th birthday party at Gleneagles. One journalist was so proud of his invite he danced round the editorial office mocking those who had not been invited. This was the early height of the Rangers EBT era but it is now clear that difficult questions went unasked by either journalists or by football administrators.

Although it may not suit the narrative of this particular blog my first realisation that David Murray’s empire was living on leveraged debt was from a small cadre of Rangers fans. It was around the early years of the Rangers Supporter’s Trust (RST) and they were determined to shake more democracy from the Ibrox boardroom. Whilst real fans of the club argued from the outside, the press took Murray at his loquacious word. He was in many respects their benefactor, their visionary – their moonbeam.

By the 1990s onwards, football journalism had ritualised and festered around the inner sanctums at Ibrox. This was an era where relevance meant being invited to a ‘presser’ at Murray Park, having Ally’s mobile or playing golf with ‘Juke Box,’ ‘Durranty’ or ‘Smudger’. Many journalists, showing a compliant lack of self-awareness, would use these nicknames as if conveyed closeness, familiarity or friendship. It is desperately sad that careers have been built on such paltry notions of access and such demeaning obsequiousness.

Around this period I had become a freelance radio-presenter and was presenting Off the Ball with my friend Tam Cowan, a Motherwell fan. We both wanted to fashion a show which saw football not trough its familiar narratives, but through the lens of the ‘diddy’ teams, a term so demeaning that we tried to reclaim it. Refusing to peddle the inevitability of ‘old firm’ power we sensed that journalistic compliance at Ibrox was now so ingrained that it was ripe for satirising. This was the main reason that Off the Ball branded itself as ‘petty and ill-informed.’ It was a self-mocking antidote to those journalists that could ‘exclusively reveal’ breaking stories from ‘impeccable sources,’ which usually meant they had heard it on the golf-course, from Walter, a man who needed no surname.

Many fans are astonished when I tell them how the journalism of this era actually functioned. On Champions League nights, journalists from opposing papers gathered together to agree what to write. Circulation was in decline, money was tight, agency copy was on the increase and foreign trips were under-scrutiny. No one dared miss the ‘big story’. So sports journalists who commonly boasted about their toughness and who ‘feared no one’ were often so fearful of returning home having missed an angle, that they agreed by consensus to run with variations of the same story. Celtic fans may wish to recoil at the image – but journalists would go into a ‘huddle’ at the end of a press-conference to agree the favoured line.

So the summer of 2012 witnessed an ‘epistemological break’ in how knowledge and information was exchanged. But let me go further and taunt Jim Spence one more time. It was the summer we also witnessed an ‘amygdala-crisis’ exposing the way the media works in Scotland. Amygdala is the nuclei in the brain that manages our tolerance for risk and is the key that often unlocks creative thinking. Many people in relatively high places in the media – a creative industry – demonstrated that they could not conceive of change, nor could they imagine what football would look like if Rangers were not playing in the SPL. They not only resisted change but lacked the imagination to think beyond it. A common language began to emerge that tried to ward off risk and an almost a childlike fear of the dark. ‘Scottish football needs a strong Rangers,’ ‘But there will no competition’; ‘other clubs will suffer’; ‘Draw a line in the sand’; ‘It was one man – Craig Whyte’, ‘They’ve been punished enough’ and of course, the daddy of them all – ‘Armageddon.’

The biggest single barrier to change was the lingering and outmoded notion that Rangers subsidised Scottish football. As a supporter of a club that had spent seven economically stable years in a league that Rangers have never played in made me deeply suspicious and I was in the words of the we-forums ‘seething’ that St Johnstone were portrayed as somehow ‘dependent’ on a club that was already fatefully insolvent. Because so little is known about the experience of the fans of smaller clubs, they are often misrepresented. For seven years my friends and I, travelled home and away in the First Division, often narrowly missing out on promotion as rival clubs like Gretna, Dundee and Livingston all used money they did not have to ‘buy’ success. It remains an incontrovertible fact that St Johnstone FC has been among the most consistent victims of fiscal misdemeanour in Scottish football. That is the irreducible issue. Several clubs have very real reasons to loathe financial mismanagement, rogue-trading and those that gain unfair advantage on the back of unserviceable debt.

Social media has allowed these smaller incremental versions of history to be told when the established media had no interest in telling them. Blogs can dig deeper than the back pages ever can and fans are now more likely to meet on Facebook than on a supporter’s bus. Many players now bypass the press completely and tweet directly with fans. Rio Ferdinand’s recent attack on racism in English football has been conducted entirely via social media, over the heads of the press. In the Rangers Tax Case context, restricted documents are regularly shared online, where they can be analysed and torn apart. Those with specialist skills such as insolvency, tax expertise or accountancy can lend their skills to a web forum and can therefore dispute official versions of events.

Not all social media is good. Open-access has meant a disproportionate rise in victim culture. The ‘easily-offended’ prowl every corner of the web desperate to find a morsel that will upset them but that is a small price to pay for greater transparency and even the most ardent bore is no excuse for limiting the free exchange of information.

We have witnessed a summer of seismic change. A discredited era that largely relied on ‘elite access to knowledge’ has all but passed away and information, however complex or seemingly unpalatable, can no longer be withheld from fans. The days of being ‘dooped’ are over.

It has been a privilege to participate in the summer of discontent and I yearn for even greater change to come. Bring it on.

Stuart Cosgrove
Stuart Cosgrove is a St Johnstone fan. He was previously Media Editor of the NME and is now Director of Creative Diversity at Channel 4, where he recently managed coverage of the Paralympics, London 2012. At the weekend he presents the BBC Scotland football show ‘Off the Ball’ with Tam Cowan. He writes here in a personal capacity.

About the author

Trisidium administrator

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

3,744 Comments so far

angus1983Posted on5:34 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Have you seen the SPL table tonight?

I hesitate to deploy the “A” word again because the point has already been proven that the threat of it was dramatically and comically WRONG, but the League is so much more interesting than it has been for a long time.

What could possibly have changed in the SPL this year?

My opinion is that the “necessary” reconstruction appears to have been done. All that was required was the removal of one holding company from the League.

View Comment

Bill1903Posted on5:34 pm - Nov 24, 2012


^ sounds good but we’ve been let down before

View Comment

Long Time LurkerPosted on5:37 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Re the arrest in connection with the alledged posting on RTC.

I remember earlier this year RTC suspended postings on the blog and he/she mentioned that c200 posts had to be deleted. A plea was also made that there be no posts connection with religion etc.

I was wondering if the arrest was due to a posting around that time?

View Comment

Madbhoy24941Posted on5:38 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Hey Angus, keep up…. I got my post in a good 30 seconds before you!

View Comment

jimlarkinPosted on5:47 pm - Nov 24, 2012


jabba still claiming – rangers done nothing wrong.

WTF

condoning concealing evidence and influencing with other witnesses

NOTHING WRONG ?

is that integrity jabba ?

View Comment

twopandaPosted on5:55 pm - Nov 24, 2012


EBT Advertising – Blatant Tax Avoidance – Enjoy [includes the basics]

http://www.thetaxexperts.co.uk/employee-benefit-trusts-and-how-they-work/

Try this for the Corporation Tax Bit

`As already stated an EBT is a way how to reduce corporation tax and this is achieved because any cash transferred from the company account to the EBT’s account is a deduction for tax purposes. Therefore if the company holds profits of £300,000 and £100,000 is transferred to the EBT, the corporation tax bill for the company is then derived from the profits of £200,000 and not £300,000. This particular transfer will reduce corporation tax by 33 %. An additional bonus to the company that had the Employee Benefit Trust is that once it had received a deduction against corporation tax, quite incredibly the company can then loan its’ own cash back for company purposes. So not only did it get a deduction of corporation tax, it still got the use of the capital! An extra benefit is the EBT then charges interest on the loan, which is a further deduction for corporation tax purposes. The company had its’ cake and ate it too!`

View Comment

slimshady61Posted on6:03 pm - Nov 24, 2012


monsieurbunny says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 14:11
——————————-
MB, this was long before any BBC report. We are talking about 2007 – HMRC issued formal statutory requests for three specific player files; two were eventually handed over, minus side letters.

The third file was not handed over but happened to be seized in the police raid on Ibrox in the autumn of 2007, which was in connection with another, criminal matter.

Let no one be in any doubt, this tribunal would have concluded in 2009 had Rangers and Murray Group not been evasive in dealing with the HMRC enquiry. And from 2004 they were aware that HMRC had questioned EBTS and yet continued to use them for another 6 years,

Murray wanted to wash his hands of Rangers before the decision came out and lucked upon the Bothwell patsy.

There is a wonderful Rangers’ supporter called Andrew on Your Call just now, putting Jabba right on a few salient points.

“Murray gambled with Rangers” – that is it in a nutshell Andrew, well said – and the root cause of the gamble was greed, let that never be forgotten.

Well done Andrew – if more Rangers supporters spoke out like Andrew, you and your club would have far more respect amongst the rest of Scottish football, I can understand why many of them are scared to do so, but they should realise that they are the silent majority.

View Comment

Danish PastryPosted on6:05 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Andrew from Bridge of Weir giving Traynor laldy on Your Call. Traynor speaks like a paid apologist for Sir David Mintyballs. Bravo Andrew!

View Comment

Lord WobblyPosted on6:07 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Outstanding call from Andrew, a Rangers fan, on BBC Sportsound. Essentially, his point was that SDM’s stance on tax avoidance not only caused the death of Rangers, but was entirely shameful.

Traynor’s treatment of Andrew was also shameful. Well done to Cosgrove for supporting the caller.

View Comment

TSFMPosted on6:08 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Given James Traynor’s insistence that “Rangers have done nothing wrong”, it does seem strange – even if you were to accept that Rangers had done nothing illegal – that Traynor as the sports editor of the Daily Record, is singing from a different morality hymn-sheet than the one provided by the editor in chief.

Why? Because that same tabloid, on grounds of morality, correctly went after Lord Ashcroft (the Tory peer who ran and funded their election campaign) for avoiding tax. They also had a go(again correctly) at Fred Goodwin at the RBS for allegedly avoiding stamp duty and inheritance tax.

You could take the cynical view that the editorials are driven only by how sympathetically they will be received by their readership and less by any notion of morality. It might be difficult to take any other view in fact ….

View Comment

Lord WobblyPosted on6:10 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Lord Wobbly says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 18:07
~~~~~~~~~~~~
Apologies. Andrew called ‘Your Call’ not ‘Sportsound’

View Comment

redetinPosted on6:21 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Traynor not sure that Mrs Crimson exists. He disn’t think there were any women involved. Jeez, has he read any of the FTT(T)?

View Comment

Long Time LurkerPosted on6:29 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Mr Traynor is of the view that Rangers will win the dual contract inquiry because the side letters referred to loans and that loans are not payments.

What do the SFA rules say about loans – are loans payments that have to be declared?

And

Could the inquiry find that the loans were scams and they they were (in eyes of the SPL panel) payments – or is it outwith their gift to reach that determination (if they were so minded?)

View Comment

Long Time LurkerPosted on6:34 pm - Nov 24, 2012


TSFM says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 12:59

Any word when HMRC may make a public announcement of their intentions?

View Comment

campsiejoePosted on6:47 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Long Time Lurker @ 18:29

I’ll need to check, but did Thornhill not say that if there were payments made by way of the side letters, then those payments would be subject to PAYE and NI
If anyone can confirm this, it would save me reading through the findings again

View Comment

Long Time LurkerPosted on6:54 pm - Nov 24, 2012


campsiejoe says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 18:47

Thanks. I think that Thornhill did say that 3 or so payments were made via side letters?

Mr Traynor appeared to be pushing the line that the dual contracts inquiry should find no fault with RFC as the players befitted from loans and not payments.

Do SFA regulations relate to payments, or put another way, where players received loans and those loans were not declared to the SFA, would that mean that a player is not registered correctly?

View Comment

greenockjackPosted on6:55 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Long Time Lurker says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 17:31

Re.”Nuclear event”

That was it but the question is was it misinformation ?

Not being his story to tell could have been a convenient way of not being able to ever come forward with it, ever. Whilst it was used at times like a comfort blanket/insurance policy by some.
Could BB have been told fibs in the first place ?

If it was true then why now, post taxcase verdict does the nuclear event not explode ?

The site explores the MSM for misinformation, agendas and cover-ups.

I suggest that at least we ask the question what happened to Barcabhoy´s “nuclear event” ?
Does BB actually post on TSFM ?
It would obviously be better if he could explain in person.

View Comment

slimshady61Posted on7:00 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Long Time Lurker says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 18:29
————————————————
Loans are ok?

Let’s say it’s the last week of the Premiership down south, Man U are a point ahead of City and Etihad Airlines makes Rangers-type loans (i.e. no need to repay ever) of say £10M to each Man U player.

Strangely the Reds fail to win their last game and City clinch the title as they did last season in the last minute of the last game at the Etihad Stadium

In Jabba’s world that would be alright then

On the appeal there’s a 56 days time limit which expires at 5pm on 24 December.

View Comment

ianagainPosted on7:01 pm - Nov 24, 2012


HMRC have 56 days from publication date 29th Oct to appeal.

Yes MIH hung out to dry those found to have tax payable. A caring employer. I bet they have an investors in people certificate on the wall at HQ.

View Comment

greenockjackPosted on7:05 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Long Time Lurker says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 17:37

Re. Post cull on RTC.

Having lurked a long time ago myself I recall this cull.

IIRC RTC partly blamed himself that day for having posted an article early that morning which included in part references to religion.

View Comment

campsiejoePosted on7:11 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Long Time Lurker @ 18:54

There seems to be some doubt over the actual number of players involved
However, if a player has a side letter that says he will receive £x for an appearance and £x as a win bonus, and these will be paid to his EBT, then I don’t think they can be classed as loans
They may have been taken from the trust as a “loan”, but the payments to the trust were contractual
Thornhill I think actually conceded that

When the SPL tribunal convenes this, as well as the possibility of these “loans” being regarded as third party payments will be centre stage
Murray insisted on MIH lawyers conducting this case to protect MIH employees, and his own alleged £6 million payment
RFC(IL) and their players were I think, a secondary consideration

Remember this tribunal sat on the EBT scheme used by all of the MIH companies
In actual fact, my take in it, is the the so called victory is not one for RFC(IL), but one for MIH

View Comment

greenockjackPosted on7:14 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Just to add, the article he posted that morning was written by someone else

View Comment

Long Time LurkerPosted on7:18 pm - Nov 24, 2012


greenockjack says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 18:55

I do not believe that anyone who posts here has to explain anything in person, where their opinions are offered in a manner that conforms to the accepted rules of the blog then others can either accept or reject.

Barcaboy has on a number of occasions noted that he is aware of a significant event and it is not within his gift to make the information fully available.

Personally I have chosen to accept postings on that matter without the need to question those postings further. RTC also verified Barcabhoy’s postings on that matter.

I believe that we should consider and where there is cause question the opinions of others. My own personal view is that your posting questioning whether the information presented by Barcabhoy was designed to misinform is bordering on being out of order. It is getting close to questioning the integrity of an individual, where I believe there is no cause to do so. I do not know Barcabhoy from Adam. However, I have considered his many postings and I have found his contributions to be sound.

I would love to know what the nuclear event is – and I am sure that the nature of it will come into the public domain some day. Perhaps soon – if there is any connection with the Tweets that emerged last night about additional government agency investigations into RFC and an individual associated with that club.

View Comment

greenockjackPosted on7:34 pm - Nov 24, 2012


LTL

The questioning of individuals integrity has been a regular occurance when it comes to the MSM output.

Generally speaking this forum as part of the “new media” should surely not place individuals above simple scrutiny when claims they make actually reach all parts of the globe and are repeated by millions (well, hundreds of thousands).

You must also remember that this forum represents Scottish football and not just one section so fair and just questions are valid in whatever direction they come or go.

Re. Barcabhoy
I actually said in my post that he himself could have been misinformed and am not accusing anyone of anything.
I would just like some clarification on whatever happened to the “nuclear event” and fill it fitting that the man himself tell us.

Re. Last night´s tweets
I saw 2 or 3 tweets by TBK, is there anything else to clarify, confirm or even suggest the events described actually happened ?

View Comment

HirsutePursuitPosted on7:39 pm - Nov 24, 2012


No-one, not MIH, not HMRC, not Mr Thornhill nor MR Thomson is arguing that the EBT loans are a sham. They are not.

They have legal form and effect. Theoretically and legally, the ultimate beneficiaries of the trusts (from which the loans were made) are the partners and children of the former RFC employees. At the moment the money passed to the Jersey trustees, it was no longer the legal property of MIH/RFC.

Even if the FTT(T) had unanimously found in favour of HMRC, the legal position of the loans would not have changed.

There is no legal mechanism (that I can envisage) that would see the loans repaid to the trust and the capital winding its way back to the creditors of The Rangers Football Club plc. In my opinion, there is no realistic prospect of bdo even attempting to create such a scenario.

Simply put, Rangers cannot be “repaid” money they are not owed.

Mr Thomson argued that the loans should have been taxed as income – not that the loans did not exist. He argued that the loans (although legal) were not commercial in real terms – since there there is no realistic prospect that these loans will be repaid during the employees lifetime.

Mr Thornhill argued that it was sufficient that the loans created a debt on the employee’s estate – they did not need to be repaid during the employees life – to make them commercially real.

The majority agreed with Mr Thornhill – though Ms Poon, in her dissenting opinion, showed that she was certainly persuaded by Mr Thomson’s logic.

As am I.

I now turn to Lord Hoffmann’s critical analysis on when a genuine legal transaction can be disregarded. As applied to the present case, his question is: ‘How can a transaction [a loan] be said not to be a ‘sham’ and yet be ‘disregarded’ for the purpose of deciding what happened in ‘the real world’?’ The response to this question encapsulates the differences between the dissenting opinion and the majority Decision. Lord Hoffmann’s dictum is: ‘The point to hold onto is that something may be real for one purpose but not for another.’ He explains at [41] what these two contrasting purposes are by using the transactions in Ramsay as an example. When the transactions were said to be not sham transactions, ‘one is accepting the juristic categorisation of the transactions as individual and discrete’, and that ‘they had a legal reality’. When the transactions were said to be not a ‘real’ disposal giving rise to a ‘real’ loss, it is this juristic categorisation that is being rejected. When should the juristic categorisation be rejected? The condition for its rejection is when it is not ‘determinative for the purposes of the statutory concepts of ‘disposal’ and ‘loss’ as properly interpreted’. He finishes his explication by stating simply: ‘The contrast here is with a commercial meaning of these concepts.

Adopting Lord Hoffmann’s approach to view the fact in the instant case, we have two contrasting purposes for the loans advanced through the trust mechanism. When the loans are said not to be shams, we are accepting the juristic categorisation of the loans, and acknowledge that they have a legal reality. When the loans are said not to be ‘real’ loans giving rise to a ‘real’ liability, it is this juristic categorisation that is being rejected. The reason for its rejection is that the juristic categorisation is not determinative for the purposes of interpreting the statutory concepts of payments as earnings. The contrast here is with a commercial meaning of these concepts: the loans are real for juristic purpose, but not real for commercial purpose.

View Comment

angus1983Posted on7:49 pm - Nov 24, 2012


madbhoy24941 says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 17:38

Hey Angus, keep up…. I got my post in a good 30 seconds before you!
——

Aye, I noticed that, ya swine! 🙂

Meantime, I read in the paper today that there is to be a semi-organised boycott of companies which avoid paying UK taxes over the Xmas period. Names such as Starbucks and Amazon are mentioned.

http://www.scotsman.com/news/uk/customers-to-boycott-tax-avoidance-companies-for-christmas-1-2654645

I wonder if the newly-sainted, squeaky-clean Bears will be joining in? After all, being loyal supporters of HM the Q and all, they must find such behaviour despicable.

Can any readers recommend other immoral organisations which could be boycotted due to their tax avoidance schemes?

View Comment

Long Time LurkerPosted on7:51 pm - Nov 24, 2012


greenockjack

Having read your post again, to me it appears that you introduce 3 elements (a) that Barcabhoy misinformed (b) that others drew comfort from the idea of a nuclear event and (c) that Barcabhoy could have repeated a story on the basis that he himself had been misinformed.

Your presentation to my mind gives all three elements equal weight – I can see no suggestion from that posting that your hypothesis is that of Barcabhoy may have been misinformed and he then went onto to disseminate that information further. Again, you appear to introduce three options of which Barcabhoy deliberately misinforming others was one.

View Comment

AgrajagPosted on7:55 pm - Nov 24, 2012


5starsorbehindbars says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 17:25

“The delay in concluding the investigation was caused by an initial lack of co-operation from Rangers FC.

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

Seems that particular method didn’t change when Mr Murray’s regime sold the club to Mr Whyte.

Still not complying with legal and reasonable requests for information.

View Comment

ordinaryfanPosted on7:55 pm - Nov 24, 2012


redetin says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 18:21
Traynor not sure that Mrs Crimson exists. He disn’t think there were any women involved. Jeez, has he read any of the FTT(T)?

……………………..

He probably just read the few “favourable” paragraphs highlighted by Murray in his memo.
It certainly doesn’t surprise me that his own intellectual contribution on it’s contents amounts to: “I didn’y think there waz any burds involved”.

View Comment

redetinPosted on7:57 pm - Nov 24, 2012


HirsutePursuit says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 19:39

No-one, not MIH, not HMRC, not Mr Thornhill nor MR Thomson is arguing that the EBT loans are a sham. They are not.
_______________________________________________________

HP, as a point of detail the HMRC inspector who gave evidence considered the trust and its management to be a sham.

“Inspector 1 explained, however, that he viewed the Trust’s management as a “sham”. There had been a change of Trustee in circumstances which aroused HMRC’s suspicions

Also, other circumstances that led Inspector 1 “to conclude that the loan arrangements were a sham.

The HMRC QC, Mr Thomson “stressed that he did not view the loans as “shams”.”

You do wonder why the legal team decided not to support the view of the HMRC inspector and I’m sure there is something more behind this strategy.

View Comment

ClashCityRockersPosted on7:59 pm - Nov 24, 2012


greenockjack says:

Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 19:05

Long Time Lurker says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 17:37

Re. Post cull on RTC.

Having lurked a long time ago myself I recall this cull.

IIRC RTC partly blamed himself that day for having posted an article early that morning which included in part references to religion.
—————————————————

I am intrigued. You still have full access to RTC’s website? Have you c&p sticked it all?

View Comment

willmacufreePosted on8:03 pm - Nov 24, 2012


The FTTT result is another in the long line of baffling and sometimes seemingly perverse decisions favouring oldco, on and off the pitch, over many many years. Even in the lifetime of this saga there have been several, which the blog has pointed up.

The second contract offence is the next big thing on the agenda. Everybody knows they exist. Everybody knows they’re utterly against the rules, and indeed are a form of match-fixing, like playing 16 year olds in an under 12s league, (just a parallel; I’m not comparing our leagues to under 12s) They can’t magic the side letters away, but can they discredit them, or render them not admissible as evidence?

For example, can they question the provenance of the letters? Could it be put to the SPL panel SFA Appeals panel or UTT that as documents passing between employer and employee, these contracts are private between the parties, should not have been made public without permission of the parties, and are therefore inadmissible, case dismissed?

Could this happen? Can any of the legal friends help? Slimshady, Hirsute?

View Comment

AgrajagPosted on8:07 pm - Nov 24, 2012


jimlarkin says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 17:47

jabba still claiming – rangers done nothing wrong.

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

They stole £18m in VAT PAYE and NI, plus whatever is outstanding from the FTT

They lied to HMRC and withheld documents, for years

They deliberately and as a matter of policy concealed facts from the SFA / SPL

When the SFA / SPL were carrying out a further investigation they withheld material again.

Their manager rabble roused causing real danger to other people’s lives.

They fielded ineligible players, cheating teams and fans both domestically and in Europe.

They siphoned funds out of a loss making business as “bonuses” leaving creditors including all of us losing millions of pounds.

That’s just from the top of my head.

View Comment

greenockjackPosted on8:09 pm - Nov 24, 2012


LTL

If operating to an agenda there is the possibility that someone may seek to misinform or mislead.
We see this in the MSM and speak of it all the time and for that I raise this as a possibility amongst others.

We consider ourselves as a new and inclusive media then we can surely question what arises within.

If I had raised this 2 or 3 weeks after BB had first talked of the NE then I´d say then I was being hasty to ask but now we´re many months on and have just had the taxcase verdict published.

With it being the Scottish football monitor you must appreciate there are alternative ways of reading a situation.

We´ll obviously get no-where but what I would hope for is for BB to actually come on and explain what happened with the nuclear event, if it can still be expected to break or if TBK´s vague unsupported tweets had anything to do with it.

View Comment

greenockjackPosted on8:15 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Clash

I only have a memory.

View Comment

torrejohnbhoyPosted on8:15 pm - Nov 24, 2012


WRT the EBTs,would it be correct to say that as these were “Third Party” payments to the players then every player who had one should be declared ineligible by the LNS tribunal.Not just the players either found liable or agreed by both parties?.

View Comment

ClashCityRockersPosted on8:26 pm - Nov 24, 2012


greenockjack says:

Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 20:15

Clash

I only have a memory.
—————————–

And you have been duped by it perhaps.

View Comment

twopandaPosted on8:31 pm - Nov 24, 2012


ordinaryfan says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 19:55
redetin says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 18:21
Traynor not sure that Mrs Crimson exists. He disn’t think there were any women involved. Jeez, has he read any of the FTT(T)?
……………………..
He probably just read the few “favourable” paragraphs highlighted by Murray in his memo.
It certainly doesn’t surprise me that his own intellectual contribution on it’s contents amounts to: “I didn’y think there waz any burds involved”.
_____

Justification for your own intellectual contribution[s]? Take your time.

View Comment

beatipacificiscotiaPosted on8:41 pm - Nov 24, 2012


campsiejoe says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 19:11

Yes, nail on the head. I was trying to explain it all to the Mrs and that was the very thing she volunteered from what she had learned, Murray International are the only ones that that got off with it. David Murray and his cronies delayed the tax tribunal for as long as it took to get rid of the club.

View Comment

HirsutePursuitPosted on8:44 pm - Nov 24, 2012


redetin says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 19:57
1 0 Rate This
HirsutePursuit says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 19:39

No-one, not MIH, not HMRC, not Mr Thornhill nor MR Thomson is arguing that the EBT loans are a sham. They are not.
_______________________________________________________

HP, as a point of detail the HMRC inspector who gave evidence considered the trust and its management to be a sham.

“Inspector 1 explained, however, that he viewed the Trust’s management as a “sham”. There had been a change of Trustee in circumstances which aroused HMRC’s suspicions

Also, other circumstances that led Inspector 1 “to conclude that the loan arrangements were a sham.

The HMRC QC, Mr Thomson “stressed that he did not view the loans as “shams”.”

You do wonder why the legal team decided not to support the view of the HMRC inspector and I’m sure there is something more behind this strategy.
=====================================
I suspect the tax inspector was simply giving his professional opinion on the commercial reality of the transactions as he saw them.

I also suspect that the QC felt that proving such an assertion (in strict legal terms) would have been a battle that would have been very difficult to prove.

Mr Thomson preferred (correctly in my view) to rely on existing case law and argued that the loans could be legally real; but still disregarded for tax purposes as commercially unreal.

It is a legal argument that the Upper Tribunal will surely be asked to consider further.

View Comment

Billy BoycePosted on8:45 pm - Nov 24, 2012


jimlarkin says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 17:47
jabba still claiming – rangers done nothing wrong.
———————————————————————
The words he repeatedly used today both on the lunchtime programme with Chic Dung and in Your Call earlier this evening were ‘Rangers are innocent’.

View Comment

Billy BoycePosted on8:51 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Here’s a thought. The FTT(T) commenced before the mail bombs to Lennon, McBride & the lady MSP. Later on we had threats to the QC sitting on the SPL disciplinary panel and the Raith Rovers official. Could it be that the two male members of the FTT(T) realised that they too could become targets of the knuckle draggers, should they deliver the ‘wrong’ verdict. Did they deliberately couch the terms of their decision in such a way as to allow HMRC every opportunity of having it successfully overturned in an Upper Tier tribunal?

Brogan Rogan hinted that Dr Poon might have had certain assistance in expressing her minority opinion. I wonder if Mure allowed or even encouraged her to make such a detailed submission, hoping that counsel acting for Hector would seize it upon in any subsequent appeal.

It’s an outlandish theory I know, but given the whole menacing stance of TRFC and its more sinister supporters, I wouldn’t blame the FTT(T) gentlemen for passing the buck.

View Comment

greenockjackPosted on8:52 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Clash

Now you intrigue me !….You still have full access to RTC’s website? Have you c&p sticked it all?

Seriously, what I posted previously was accurate.
You may have missed (post at 19:14) that I clarified that the article mentioned was not from the pen of RTC. It was posted by RTC but it´s author was a poster from a Celtic supporters website (can´t remember which).
RTC posted it early (well before 8am).

And RTC did partly blame himself as I´m sure some others on here will be able to remember.

View Comment

ordinaryfanPosted on9:10 pm - Nov 24, 2012


twopanda says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 20:31
1 3 Rate This
ordinaryfan says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 19:55
redetin says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 18:21
Traynor not sure that Mrs Crimson exists. He disn’t think there were any women involved. Jeez, has he read any of the FTT(T)?
……………………..
He probably just read the few “favourable” paragraphs highlighted by Murray in his memo.
It certainly doesn’t surprise me that his own intellectual contribution on it’s contents amounts to: “I didn’y think there waz any burds involved”.
_____

Justification for your own intellectual contribution[s]? Take your time.

…………………

Sorry, what do you mean? I’ve posted my opinions, they are far from learned contributions like your own, but they are far removed from “waz a burd involved”.
So what are you saying exactly? Make it clear as I might not understand unless you spell it out, that way I will know how to reply to your last comment.
Take your time so you make it perfectly clear what you are saying.

View Comment

broadswordcallingdannybhoyPosted on9:12 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Are EBT’s still as legal now as they were when MIH/RFC(IL) used them?

I’m asking because I think Mure and Rae may have just shown all the clubs in Scotland how to shoo away those financial armageddon wolves from their doorsteps.

Club Chairmen give players loans instead of wages and watch your armageddon overdraft reduce as if by magic.

I’m surprised that Mr Traynor and his succulent ilk haven’t seen this decision to be the answer to our problems. Surely now there’s no need to kiss goodbye to sporting integrity by shoehorning the Sevconians back into the top flight. It’s win-win for everyone, the tribunal have shown us the way.

View Comment

SmugasPosted on9:20 pm - Nov 24, 2012


So much info to try and keep up with at present so apologies if I’ve missed any points.

Jabba pushing the innocent line is fine by me. Of the 81 cases circa 30 odd seem to have disappeared into the ether with a suggestion that Rangers settled out of court (or would have had the cheque not bounced) Presumably the 3rd Dec Creditors meeting will tell us this? Of the 50 odd remaining cases HMRC found against another 5 or 6 which Rangers accepted. That leaves 45 odd that Rangers were indeed innocent notwithstanding specific evidence and extensive opinion that suggests that the operation, never mind the morality, of the trust loans was wrong. So, Rangers were innocent in 45 odd cases. Great. Fine. Dandy. Still guilty in 35 though. Spartans were also innocent as they did get the date right on page 1 and look whgat happened to them.

And I’ll just take the chance to echo support for Andrew from Bridge of Weir on Your Call. Punching (footballing) above your weight is NOT the same as living beyond means. Couldn’t agree more.

View Comment

Danish PastryPosted on9:28 pm - Nov 24, 2012


greenockjack says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 20:52
2 0 Rate This
Clash

Now you intrigue me !….You still have full access to RTC’s website? Have you c&p sticked it all?

Seriously, what I posted previously was accurate.
You may have missed (post at 19:14) that I clarified that the article mentioned was not from the pen of RTC. It was posted by RTC but it´s author was a poster from a Celtic supporters website (can´t remember which).
RTC posted it early (well before 8am).

And RTC did partly blame himself as I´m sure some others on here will be able to remember.
————-

Don’t remember RTC posting other than his own blogs. But I may be mistaken. You are entirely correct in that online media should also be open to question and scrutiny. No sacred cows, there’s enough of them in the regular media.

I must confess the nuclear event was of little interest to me. We should be dealing with the here and now. If there really was any sensitive information I can think of several reasons for not publishing, even though true. But until I hear and read the evidence I would put it in the unsubstantiated rumour box. And if the police are involved I expect we’ll only know after the event anyway.

Why are you so interested?

View Comment

SeniorPosted on9:30 pm - Nov 24, 2012


It might be timely to remind people on here that the SPL inquiry has been set up by the officials of the SPL, who in turn are the representatives of the twelve SPL clubs. If the cheating is not dealt with in an transparent and appropriate way then it is goodbye to the SPL. The future of the game is in the hands of these twelve apostles.
Giving what was disclose at the FTT, Lord Nimmo’s hearing should be short and sweet ……… cheating on a grand scale!
On a different tact It will be very interesting if not highly embarrassing if the HMRC appeal is upheld at the Upper Tier hearing and the findings of the FTT is overturned. The stakes are high for certain learned gentlemen?

View Comment

ordinaryfanPosted on9:30 pm - Nov 24, 2012


smugas says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 21:20
1 0 Rate This
So much info to try and keep up with at present so apologies if I’ve missed any points.

Jabba pushing the innocent line is fine by me. Of the 81 cases circa 30 odd seem to have disappeared into the ether with a suggestion that Rangers settled out of court (or would have had the cheque not bounced) Presumably the 3rd Dec Creditors meeting will tell us this? Of the 50 odd remaining cases HMRC found against another 5 or 6 which Rangers accepted. That leaves 45 odd that Rangers were indeed innocent notwithstanding specific evidence and extensive opinion that suggests that the operation, never mind the morality, of the trust loans was wrong. So, Rangers were innocent in 45 odd cases. Great. Fine. Dandy. Still guilty in 35 though. Spartans were also innocent as they did get the date right on page 1 and look whgat happened to them.

And I’ll just take the chance to echo support for Andrew from Bridge of Weir on Your Call. Punching (footballing) above your weight is NOT the same as living beyond means. Couldn’t agree more.

……………….

Not to mention the possibility of a HMRC appeal.
And RFC were guilty of nothing? Jabba again distorting facts and muddying waters, because RFC had accepted liability of the “wee” tax bill accumulated under Murray, and non payments of NIC and VAT payments under Whyte.

View Comment

campsiejoePosted on9:39 pm - Nov 24, 2012


smugas @ 21:20

As I pointed out earlier, this was an appeal by MIH
In my opinion, it is likely that the “not guilty” verdicts will apply to those who did not have side letters, in other words non football players
This was an exercise in self preservation by Murray, and that is why he insisted on MIH conducting the appeal
After all an alleged payment of £6 million rested on the outcome

View Comment

ShooperbPosted on9:41 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Tommy says:

Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 20:51

Sorry Tommy, I can’t believe that for a second. I think it’s more likely that Brogan hit the nail on the head when he said that they had to go on the evidence in front of them, considered in the almost artificial environment of the court room.

My own take is still that we’re looking at it the wrong way. We’re still taking the tax case as being a single entity, much like the MSM are. Rangers didn’t bother contesting the ones where they were banged to rights, so they managed to reduce it to those cases where they felt they had a reasonable chance of success (The fact that they still weren’t entirely successful seems to have been lost in the rush to proclaim their innocence), ao looking at it in hindsight, it was likely that would

I know we’ve got ourselves into a bit of twist over where the figure of uncontested ones comes from – unfortunately, by the very nature if the MSM, we’re never going to hear this figure quoted anywhere, so it’s a bit of a catch 22 – we need the figure to be quoted somewhere to apparently prove it’s credibility, but who is going to quote it?

We can only go on what we’re told by people that we’ve come to regard as credible. In order that we can remove any doubt, I do wish that someone would post a link to it. I understand that it’s probably not in the verdict (why would it be if it doesn’t form part of what’s being appealed?), but it must be somewhere!

View Comment

twopandaPosted on9:43 pm - Nov 24, 2012


ordinaryfan says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 21:30
__
Not to mention the possibility of a HMRC appeal.
And RFC were guilty of nothing? Jabba again distorting facts and muddying waters, because RFC had accepted liability of the “wee” tax bill accumulated under Murray, and non payments of NIC and VAT payments under Whyte.
____

Fascinating stuff there – bravo

View Comment

readceltPosted on9:45 pm - Nov 24, 2012


campsiejoe on Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 21:39
0 0 Rate This
smugas @ 21:20

As I pointed out earlier, this was an appeal by MIH
In my opinion, it is likely that the “not guilty” verdicts will apply to those who did not have side letters, in other words non football players
This was an exercise in self preservation by Murray, and that is why he insisted on MIH conducting the appeal
After all an alleged payment of £6 million rested on the outcome
——————————–
That’s a personal liability for what? £2.4 mil?
(Fag pack 40% calculation)

View Comment

SmugasPosted on9:46 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Ordinaryfan says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 21:30

Correct. It galls me that Rangers should be described as anything like innocent (and kudos again to the your call caller for saying it) I just feel that to challenge him on this point is unnecessary (one might even think he was deliberately provoking us, shirly not) when there is sufficient evidence in the accepted ‘guilty-as-charged’s.

The more I think about this the more I see the likely result. To strip the relevant titles is a purely cosmetic exercise at the end of the day. It has no impact on newco, oldco or any usco for that matter. It’ll be a point of principle for pub debates for the next twenty years, but nothing else of material substance outwith this at the end of the day. I will say now, that is exactly why it is insufficient for me.

View Comment

redetinPosted on9:48 pm - Nov 24, 2012


campsiejoe says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 21:39
__________________________________

“As I pointed out earlier, this was an appeal by MIH”

Small point of correction, the appeal was by Murray Group Holdings and others.

View Comment

campsiejoePosted on9:50 pm - Nov 24, 2012


readcelt @ 21:45

Yup
And don’t forget to add penalties and fines
We were all guilty, myself included, of fixating on RFC(IL), but this appeal was made on behalf of, and run by MIH

View Comment

greenockjackPosted on9:51 pm - Nov 24, 2012


DP

Re. RTC
The article I refer to was posted as a comment, not a blog.
—————————————–
I agree re.unsubstantiated rumour box.

I am interested firstly to discover what it was.
If it didn´t have any substance then that would lead us to a different set of questions.

Would be of interest to all if BB could actually clarify how things stand on the nuclear event.
Despite what LTL said I feel if a poster comes forward with such a story that reaches far and wide then I think there is a duty of sorts to keep us informed, even if it were to just at a “safe distance” and of course without revealing the source.

View Comment

ShooperbPosted on9:51 pm - Nov 24, 2012


areyouaccusingmeofmendacity says:

Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 21:41

Oops, didn’t finish that sentence! It should have said that it made it more likely that Rangers would have success in their appeal.

View Comment

SmugasPosted on9:52 pm - Nov 24, 2012


areyouaccusingmeofmendacity says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 21:41

Whilst we’re at it I want clarity on two points (for LNS if nothing else). Were the 30 odd not appealed? And was the bill actually paid?

View Comment

Not The Huddle MalcontentPosted on9:55 pm - Nov 24, 2012


sorry if i’ve missed it, but i’ll ask again as it is getting repeated more and more

What evidence/proof exists that supports the assertion the RFC conceded 30 cases that were NOT in the FTT result?

View Comment

campsiejoePosted on9:55 pm - Nov 24, 2012


redetin @ 21:48

OK, split hairs 🙂

View Comment

ShooperbPosted on10:04 pm - Nov 24, 2012


smugas says:

Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 21:52

That’s what I want to know as well! Because if they didn’t contest those 30 odd, then it stands to reason that the dual contracts are a formality,

View Comment

angus1983Posted on10:08 pm - Nov 24, 2012


smugas says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 21:46

To strip the relevant titles is a purely cosmetic exercise at the end of the day. It has no impact on newco, oldco or any usco for that matter. … I will say now, that is exactly why it is insufficient for me.
——

I’m with you there.

Stripping of titles means effectively nothing, other than to tarnish the reputation of a Club which has already died. That Sally has been saying in the papers today that it would be the ultimate sanction, the very worst thing that could possibly happen, is quite telling.

He’s setting the stage for the reaction from the Rangers camp when it does happen.

There will be much Shakespearean mopping of brows and wailing on the steps of Ibrox, followed by a stumbling retreat back inside the Big Hoose, with smirks appearing on faces as they pass through the shadows with their backs to the gathered bears and MSM outside.

It is surely unthinkable that the final punishment will be simply to strip a few titles.

HMRC, get on with it. Get your appeal application in. 🙂

View Comment

ianagainPosted on10:12 pm - Nov 24, 2012


BRTH
Just doing listen again on Off the Ball.

Honourable mention as was well deserved.

View Comment

angus1983Posted on10:15 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Some Saturday night light entertainment. Chick Young’s BBC blog from March 7 this year, in which he confirms his opinion that liquidation means the end of RFC as a Club, and that the SPL will simply have to welcome the new Club back.

Ah, Chico. You’re some boy.

——

There is no chance now that Rangers will beat the 31 March deadline of having their accounts signed off, thereby automatically debarring them from European competition. And an annual meeting? It’s a photo finish with world peace as to what might happen first.

Rangers and Celtic are seen as integral to the Scottish Premier League’s TV deal
And here’s a fact, not speculation. It’s SPL survival or bust for everyone at Ibrox now.

The SPL has confirmed that the only way to the Scottish Football League is relegation. This isn’t a game of snakes and ladders where you throw the wrong dice and end up at the shallow end of the Third Division.

If Rangers ultimately explode – as opposed to the current slow burn – and liquidate then it will be down to the SPL board to decide whether they would accept a new company – say Rangers 2012 or Govan United – back into the fold. If they don’t then there is nowhere to run.

This isn’t an exercise in sporting integrity, you see. The Marques of Queensberry wasn’t invited to sit on the board. The rules say there is no path to accommodate Rangers, or any other SPL club, which has behaved with such cavalier financial abandon for that matter, within the current marriage with the SFL.

Curious but true.

With every astonishing revelation, Rangers stand accused of unravelling our game – currently – and their history. What an unholy mess.

It is the procrastination that baffles most observers. The administrator set up base camp some time ago now and yet still the indecision and bickering continues with just young Gregg Wylde having been seem to have done the decent thing and fallen on the sword. Good luck to him.

Dave King reckons – and as a man who fired £20m into the club, he is entitled to his opinion – that Rangers will liquidate. He could be wrong, but I suspect he is right.

Liquidation is the ultimate sanction. Sunset over Ibrox and run the “That’s all, folks” caption.

From the ashes and all that, of course. An old home but a new club and the everlasting memory that, just like dear old Third Lanark, a once proud institution died of shame. Glasgow Rangers by any other name. Except it’s not quite, is it?

For all that, the SPL won’t – can’t – turn its collective back on the new Rangers because it cannot turn away the business. The Ibrox following – 50,000 paying customers a home game – won’t slice their loyalties and follow on elsewhere.

They will simply evaporate from our sport and, with them, the television companies who see that, without Old Firm matches, the Scottish game is about as showbiz as The Sky at Night.

View Comment

ianagainPosted on10:16 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Re differences in number of taxable players or employees.

May be you have not noted the references to the 90 plus unpublished pages (as they relate to individuals)

View Comment

AgrajagPosted on10:19 pm - Nov 24, 2012


areyouaccusingmeofmendacity says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 21:41

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

As I understand it the liquidator will provide a list of creditors and how much they are owed.

This will include HMRC.

One wonders how the MSM will report this figure, will it be as widespread as they “Rangers are innocent” stories (totally incorrect) which have appeared over the last few days.

Let’s see how many other creditors were shafted for money whilst Rangers were paying out bonuses to people, from a massively loss making business. I mean FFS, losing tens of millions and paying bonuses, how does that work. Gratuitous alienation anyone.

To say nothing of selling season tickets to Ticketus (£40m worth) and Ticketus seem to be getting shafted for that as well.

Or are they.

View Comment

ShooperbPosted on10:22 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Not The Huddle Malcontent says:

Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 21:55

That was my point – I’ve seen too many credible people allude to the 30+ figure, so I believe it exists, not least Paul McConville’s piece for Scotzine. Now I’m sure he wouldn’t make up this figure from thin air. We just need to know where he and others are getting the figure from. Like I said, a link would be great, but the normal process would be a link to a media outlet (in the Wikipedia tradition!), but I think we’re all agreed that it’s going to be a thankless task searching for one in the current climate!

View Comment

beatipacificiscotiaPosted on10:27 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Here’s a thought, maybe only a limited number of people have the details of the admitted cases. To reveal the details would reveal the source of this and other leaks?

Failing that, I can only assume it is fantasy.

View Comment

twopandaPosted on10:30 pm - Nov 24, 2012


http://scotslawthoughts.wordpress.com/2012/11/24/why-its-nonsense-to-say-rangers-won-the-tax-case-so-the-spl-should-drop-its-witch-hunt/#more-2635

excellence

View Comment

paulmac2Posted on10:34 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Here is the question…

Why did so many individuals at the football club need to borrow money from the club as a loan…in most cases on a monthly basis?

They were payments and in over 30 instances they were accepted as payments…the others can be viewed as payments but due to no supporting evidence…they became unproven…

The PR officer for Rangers Football Club PLC (now liquidated) …James Traynor can say what he likes…the fact is they cheated…that won’t changes James no matter what you are told to say!

View Comment

slimshady61Posted on10:42 pm - Nov 24, 2012


beatipacificiscotia says:
Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 20:41
——————————————
Who knows who owns MIH nowadays though? Lloyds have been taking an increasing stake in the business as the losses & debt grew over the past few years.

Last time I looked it didn’t have the cash to settle more than about £10M. The bank is too committed so I suspect if that company has to fork out for the admitted PAYE & NIC, the bank will simply take more of the equity of the business to try and cut its losses.

And no one has yet commented on why, on 5 May 2012, Murray changed his title at Companies House to Mr David Murray from Sir David Murray

View Comment

wottpiPosted on10:43 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Not sure if there are other cases over the years but here is one I can find from a quick web search.

http://www.skysports.com/story/0,19528,11788_2169552,00.html

Rangers appear to have made a claim to the SFA for Colin Hendry’s injury sustained when on national team duty.

It would be interesting to see if the claim for loss of wages matched his wage slip or as refer to the EBTs loan ‘Wage slip plus’.

Insurance fraud anyone?

View Comment

Not The Huddle MalcontentPosted on10:46 pm - Nov 24, 2012


was playing 5s today with a sevconian, he came away with a cracker……..HBOS did not appear on the list of RFC creditors from duff and phelps because they were shareholders in RFC

CW didn’t pay off LTSB/HBOS the 18M debt, instead he give then a few million and put the ticketus money in his pocket. it never went to rfc

but because HBOS have shares in RFC, they can’t claim it back as creditors as they essentially contributed to the administration.

View Comment

readceltPosted on11:04 pm - Nov 24, 2012


Watching Match of the day. Its been said before but that tash on Owen is a belter.

View Comment

Leave a Reply