Battle For Rangers’ Soul Begins
31/01/2012 2,532 Comments
The facts behind today’s Daily Record story will come as no surprise to the readers of this blog. It will come as even less of a surprise to the blog participants whose sterling work uncovered the Companies House filings and refined the analysis on which today’s story is based. In the local vernacular, “chapeaux” to all concerned, but especially to: Don Dionisio; JohnBhoy; PaulieWalnuts; Onandonandon; and so many others. (I feel like an Oscar winner who has left out the names of several key people in an acceptance speech. Forgive me for the many omissions, but we will find a way to recognise other outstanding contributors in another post).
Many will still be trying to figure out what is going on at the Daily Record let alone Rangers. After years of sycophancy, it seems a remarkable turn of events to see Keith Jackson and James Traynor bite the hand that once fed so much. The motivations behind this sudden turn of events piqued my curiosity. After a few calls to some well placed sources, the pieces of the jigsaw started to fall into place.
This morning’s Daily Record story represents the opening artillery barrage in the Battle for Rangers’ Soul. As we have been hinting at in recent weeks, there was never a guarantee that Craig Whyte would have the field unopposed to rebuild Rangers. Following receivership (which in this case would mean certain liquidation), Craig Whyte’s newco-Rangers would have no more legal claim to be the successor to the club formed in 1872 than if I formed one. It is with this in mind that Rangerstaxcase.com can ‘exclusively reveal‘ (sarcasm intended) that current and former Rangers directors, Dave King and Paul Murray, are planning to force Craig Whyte out of the picture. By exposing Whyte’s reckless financial strategy, they hope drive a wedge between Whyte and the club’s supporters.
With bankruptcy in some form now looking inevitable, the path will be open for King and Murray to claim the mantle of legitimacy as the inheritors of Rangers’ traditions and fan base. A season ticket renewal boycott will likely play a role in forcing Whyte from the field of play as will continued revelations and insinuations of incompetence and unfitness to be Rangers’ custodian.
King faces hurdles related to his public involvement in this plan. His current directorship is a legacy of his financial investment made before his own tax troubles in South Africa exploded. As a direct result of this dispute, he is subject to court orders in Scotland and England preventing him from buying or selling any assets. The court orders also prohibit anyone from buying or selling assets on his behalf. However, it is widely believed that he has accumulated substantial personal wealth offshore and would have the means to support a relaunched club if legal obstacles could be overcome.
Unimpeded by any such restrictions, Paul Murray is not believed to have the personal wealth required to launch Rangers on his own. Therefore, the alliance with Dave King is a natural one. However, if King cannot resolve his issues with the South African tax authorities (SARS) soon, suspicion may fall once more over any relaunch of the famous Glasgow team. After a decade in which playing in the shadows of the law has brought Rangers to the brink of disaster, any newco that is not seen to be above reproach in terms of its sources of funding would continue to fuel the curiosity of bloggers and investigators.
However, with the backing of the Scottish media, King and Murray can expect an easy ride. The Daily Record has clearly made a decision as to where its own economic interests lie. If Whyte is not going to be able to supply enough positive transfer stories to boost circulation, then regime change will get their unquestioning support.
Those who might have hoped that today’s Daily Record might have signaled a new period of responsible and open journalism in Scotland will be disappointed. It is more simply put that Traynor and Jackson are just backing a different horse.