Rangers’ PR Still Peddling Disinformation

Keeping up fan morale has never been more important at Ibrox. If Rangers simply run out of cash to keep the lights on, the administrators will have no choice but to liquidate the club. While the administration process means that Rangers have great leeway with regards which bills they pay, it is vital for the club that cash continues to come in. Therefore, we need to view all statements emanating from Edmiston Drive as being designed to achieve that goal.

We have heard some strange-sounding statements from the administrators, but it is the story circulating that the tax case has not gone well for HMRC that I found interesting. Scotland on Sunday reported this week that this blog “claimed the ‘smoking gun’ for HMRC was a number of letters indemnifying players from any future tax liabilities on money placed in their EBTs”. I have said no such thing. I did say: “I can only hope for Rangers’ sake that they were not so stupid as to provide written guarantees for players saying that they did not need to repay these loans”.

It was in fact Darrell King on Clyde Superscore Board who told us that Rangers players had two contracts and were given side letters telling them that loans did not need to be repaid. Darrell went further on 10 November, 2011 stating: “I saw the letters the players have got to state that they are not liable for any payments which were part of their contract“.  (More recently, Darrell denied actually seeing the letters).

Regardless, a “key witness” at the tribunal reports that no such side letters existed. That would be fantastic news for Rangers if it was true.

I can only assume that the story from this “key witness” is being pushed to keep fan morale up during these difficult days. It may also be a last-ditch effort to try to get anyone in possession of the facts to make a mistake and disclose evidence presented to the First Tier Tribunal (FTT).

Let us look objectively at this “source”.  The Scotland on Sunday report stated: “The source, who is not connected to Rangers but had clients who benefited from EBTs“. This is a key witness?  Someone who did not participate in the EBT personally? Someone who is not connected to Rangers? Given the long list of players and executives who participated in the EBT scheme, this is the best witness available to refute Darrell King’s claims?

If this person was indeed a witness at the tribunal, he will have been called as a witness by Rangers. He will have been initially examined by Rangers’ counsel, cross-examined by HMRC’s lawyer, and then possibly re-examined by Rangers’ counsel again. Then he will have been made to leave the hearing. He would not know anything about what evidence was presented other than his own.

Of course, nothing in life is absolute. This blog never said that defeat for Rangers in the tax case is 100% guaranteed, but I believe that the evidence is overwhelmingly against the club. We are close to the end of this process and it is probably best that those with an interest in learning the facts remain patient and simply wait for the FTT result.  The significance of this case is no longer in dispute, and there is little need to bang the drum for more publicity for Rangers’ difficulties. After all this time, we can wait a little while longer for the final outcome.

About rangerstaxcase
I have information on Rangers' tax case, and I will use this blog to provide the details of what Rangers FC have done, why it was illegal, and what the implications for what was (updated) one of the largest football clubs in Britain.

730 Responses to Rangers’ PR Still Peddling Disinformation

  1. Whullie says:

    TheBlackKnight says:
    21/02/2012 at 7:53 pm

    I’m still intrigued about the conflict in owning shares in another club and possibly playing in the same competition. May take a few years however

    TBK. Could you be referring to Derby County and Oxford? Robert Maxwell owned Derby and his son Kevin (IIRC) owned Oxford (on behalf of the father). A young, up and coming Dean Saunders was at Oxford when Max Snr told Max Jnr that he wanted him at Derby. When Kevin told the manager, a youthful Mark Lawrenson, to tell Saunders to pack his gear, he was moving, Lawrenson replied, ‘over my dead body.’ Max Snr got his way (as he effectively owned both clubs) and Lawrenson resigned. The FA got word and, soon after, changed the regs to outlaw conflicts of interest/owning or investing in more than one club.
    Lawrenson’s ultimately ended up as player/manager for Corby Town. My son played for them at the time.
    As a small add-on. My season ticket for Corby Town then in the early 90’s was £25.00. Deducted from my salary at the princely rate of £2.10 per month. How times have changed. 🙂

  2. OnandOnandOnand says:

    Hugh McEwan says:

    22/02/2012 at 1:39 am

    I assume this isn’t about me critiscising the style of 2 posters or questioning the 3 or 4 year Ticketus deal. Was that my “awful behaviour”? It is about me having the temerity to be here while others who support my team chant obscenities? Those are actions I have never condoned.

    I make no apology for posting the worst points of Whyte on this site, nor do I condone in any way the Murray era. I have said from the start that any newco should be in division bottom, wherever that may be when this all shakes out. If you can’t hack me being here, tough

  3. longtimelurker says:

    Classic! 🙂

  4. k3lly says:

    Corporate TTP arrangement “guidelines”: must be possible then.


  5. Auldheid says:

    Lucculent Sam says:

    22/02/2012 at 1:45 am

    I thought Dingwall and O Donhoe were on the same “pay the lot back” song sheet but whereas Dingwall was talking about meeting corportae responsibilities in full maybe Donhie was talking pennies in the pound (but I thought he meant pay the lot.)

    Regradless the Treasury will give Donohue short shrift on that one but would have to look at the viability of a full repayment plan that might satisfy a sufficient number of objectives that the taxpayer would accept it. as reasonable and Rangers would be glad to take it in order to remain Rangers and escape the CW nightmare.

  6. longtimelurker says:

    Apologies for the hvn word in that vid guys I posted a link from KDS which showed up as above but the word wasn’t in the link.

    Perhaps someone could delete that please?

  7. bhoyant says:

    HMRC have targets to meet in terms of revenue collected, they will try to maximise this but won’t negotiate on the amount.

    A CVA may be possible to agree before the big tax case hits if HMRC are owed less 25% of the total debt. A time to pay agreement is the only option left after the big tax case crystalises.

    Time to pay is normally up to a year but can be extended but as said by others not by much. Given the amounts that will be due when the big tax case hits I cannot see RFC being able to manage the amounts Hector would demand.

    Either RFC would limp on under a crippling repayment plan or be liquidated as one couldnt be agreed or kept to.

    CW is the floating charge holder and gets the main assets should his master plan of liquidation come to pass.

    BTW Hugh, Hector knows about this blog 😉

  8. JIMMYCZZ says:

    Any chance we can stop the embedded videos please? They add nothing to the discussion and are more suited to other places like KDS.

  9. Pat McCarthy says:

    The Scottish TV embedded videos are great for those of us who live 12,000 miles away as we have no other way to view them.

  10. Ray Charles says:

    Off topic, sorry.

    But does Craig have a long-lost sister?


    Cheating the taxpayer?

    I would have thought Cameron will have enough on his plate for a while now without potentially having to justify any sweetheart HMRC deal with Rangers to English taxpayers.

  11. Tenerifetim says:

    Having now viewed the STV programme with Donohoe , Dingwall and others I am quite convinced that Donohoe’s stance is merely posturing for his Blue/Orange vote as his constituency
    ( where I have a home and vote) has been under considerable pressure from SNP ( recent MSP change ).
    I have been at several meetings with Donohoe over the years in relation to local industry in Ayrshire and he is of the succulent lamb brigade , looking for a free lunch and wine at all times .
    Do not be surprised when Parliament rises again if he tables a question at PMQ´s in line with recent PMQ on Portsmouth .
    He would be better to ask a question on how to improve the unemployment situation in his constituency that the unpaid taxes could have assisted !
    I doubt he will venture from the Delta Bar the 200 yards or so to the Irvine CSC to seek the opinion of his green constituents !
    As for Dingwall and his website- enough has been said !

  12. Tenerifetim says:

    WRT those that do not want relevant video links , 2 points ( In my opinion)

    1) I dont think you can just post a link without it being automatically embedded .
    2) As already commented on, people outwith the UK don´t normally get these programmes or access via iPlayers so the links are invaluable – as long as the content is on topic .
    I certainly enjoyed seeing them in the context of Tuesday´s developments and the stances being taken by the individuals – it will be interesting to see how much abuse Graham Spiers gets from the VB and other cohorts of Dingwall – I´m surprised Donohue shared a platform with him .

  13. Troublesome86 says:

    2moro’s Record story about the Arsenal shares says it was paid into Pritchards Stockbrokers account…

  14. JIMMYCZZ says:

    one wonders if the action against Pritchard was indeed the event that caused the pushing of the administration button.

  15. Lucculent Sam says:

    Auldheid says:
    22/02/2012 at 1:58 am

    [HMRC] would have to look at the viability of a full repayment plan that …. Rangers would be glad to take it in order to remain Rangers and escape the CW nightmare.

    Auldheid, I am sure Rangers FC (IN ADMINISTRATION) would be delighted to welcome any repayment plan that HMRC proposed as an alternative to liquidation. Let’s assume for a second such a deal was on offer. [There isn’t of course, but let’s play with your idea.] How would the club find the cash to make payments to HMRC of around £15M/year for 5-6 years? That’s roughly half their current annual turnover. HMRC would demand cast-iron assurances about funding for those levels of payments too. Who/what’s going to stand behind that sort of commitment? Hint: relying on the Bank of Santa Claus or 5-6 years of putting on really good lines at the bookies will probably not convince Hector.

    Your idea would then also have to consider how the club filled a number of other gaping holes in their accounts. These include debts to other creditors, reduced gate money (lower attendances because the new team of duffers gets humped by the likes of Kilmarnock and Falkirk), no UEFA dosh for a few years, rental of the stadium (maybe), most of the season ticket money going to Ticketus, catering income mortgaged for a few years, payment in full and up front for inbound transfers, etc. Not to mention finding a big wedge of readies as working capital since no bank will offer credit. I doubt any business could hope to trade their way out of that position unless it was bankrolled by a Russian oligarch or an oil sheikh.

    The only way the club can escape liquidation is to find £100M or so in the next few weeks. But if someone did have that sort of money to spend, they’d wait to put it into a newco and not hand over most of it to settle the debts that Murray and the MBB ran up. Suppose I couldn’t pay my mortgage and was about to be evicted. Would you buy my house now and pay off my debt to the bank or wait until the house was reposessed and you could get it from them at a discount?

    By the way, escaping the CW nightmare means nothing. There’s an even scarier one from Murray to deal with.

  16. Gavin says:

    Tried to post this earlier from my mobile but doesn’t seem to have worked. I’ll try again…(and apologies if it’s already been posted)


    This recent news article is interesting. Derry City went into liquidation 2 years ago, started a new co, took on most of the debts from the previous co and applied to rejoin the League of Ireland. Derry gained promotion in first year back into the top tier of LOI and finished 3rd last year, qualifiying for Europa League.

    What I’m hearing is that FAI supported Derrys quest to regain entry to the Europa League on the basis that they assumed much of the debt of the previous co.; but rumour is Cliftonville objected to this on the basis that they believe they are owed money from the old co over a deal they had to bring Celtic over for two friendlies. When Celtic sent over a reserve team Derry pulled the plug on the basis that they wouldn’t sell enough tickets. Cliftonville then had to stump up the whole fee.

    I suggest this is relevant as it shows that it will be difficult for a Ragers new co to regain entry to European competition even if they assume some/most of the debt of the old co.

  17. stunney says:

    Timalloy says:
    21/02/2012 at 7:30 pm

    Just listening to Radio Clyde tonight, Mark Guidi has just thanked Daily Record, Jim Traynor and Keith Jackson, for “months of diligence and investigating”


    May I strongly suggest—urge, if you will—our excellent host and leader RTC to nail this 99% crap and other instances of stolen credit and plagiarism with another piece in the august Graudnian, detailing just how long ago this blog identified the mortgaging of tickets, their release from the floating charge, etc.

    Alternatively, or in addition, any chance of going on Celtic TV with your head only filmed from the rear, and laying it all out, perhaps with Barcabhoy, Hugh, Paul McC, and PW accompanying you, for an in-depth discussion and interview, with a transcript subsequently furnished to the BBC, STV, Herald, Scotsman, the Sundays, etc?

  18. sanny Cannon says:

    Lucculent Sam. He is not the MP for Cumnock or my home village of Muirkirk. Gets a wee bit tiresome reading ill disguised, discriminatory jibes about Ayrshire. Yer jokin tho’, right?

  19. brogan rogan trevino and hogan says:

    Dear Lord what have we here?

    On and On and On and On and On………. well you get the rest.

    Brevity? lol.

    I would argue that there is a place for a lightly phrased summary- which may be lengthy and contain nothing new other thah an analogy or two— in amongst the companies house, tax,legal and accounting analysis which to the average reader is as dry as the Gobi desert.

    Besides, one such post must surely be briefer than numerous small posts about syntax and all that other stuff? Loads of folk don’t have time to read the whole blog from back to front and so the odd summary– and yes mine are sometimes very odd— has a place but each to their own.

    On more important matters:

    First– why on earth would anyone have to apologise to me for a bit of grumpiness? That is far too serious and simply not even a consideration or wortha thought.

    Second- do I read you right in that you alledge I owe you a pint? What a thouroughly scurrilous but delightful allegation– although it can scarcely be owed on the basis of some “No Ticketus” basis– as I am on Record as stating that I thought Whytey would have bridged the Lloyds £18M and then used the ticketus money to pay it back! Don’t ask me to find where I said this cause I am hopeless at that sort of thing.


    The 6 year payment plan was agreed through Grant Thornton as Liquidator of a company. However GT were appointed at the behest of HMRC’s big bad debt collection office in Worthing, an alledged wrongful trading and malfeasance on the part of Directors– which was forcefully denied.

    However, faced with a substantial,lengthy and costly court case, both sides agreed at compromise on an economic basis and a deal was struck to pay funds over a 6 year period- which funds were to come out of a phoenix business– with regard to what that phoenix business could sustain and afford.

    I would agree that six years is longert than one could normally expect in terms of a payment plan from HMRC and this arrangement is indeed unusual in my experience. However, a couple of years ago the Government did bring in an initiative which attracted the nickname “The dash for cash” whereby sometimes unusually long settlements could be achieved provided it resulted in the revenue collecting money which it may otherwise not get.

    As said elsewhere, part of the deal is that the sum overall is not discounted at all– and of course “current” payments ahve to be maintained timeously.

    I have no doubt that how this policy is implemented will change regularly especially as all deals will be subject to scrutiny by the HMTC monitoring unit who look at these things to see how and if the policy works in prctice and to ensure that the officers are actually doing the job properly.

    Obviously there are guidelines and practices that HMRC follow in any debt collection process and my reason for highlighting the 6 year case is that it is possible in extreme circumstances to agree something along those lines.

    Therefore if the politicos are coming out of the woodwork then we may just find someone saying that whatever the sum is it can be paid on an interest bearing basis over a longer than normal time– but you will pay every single penny.

    Personally I think the debt is just too big for the business in this instance– as I said in my earlier and much less boring post.

    With that, I am away back to my bed in search of sleep and levity of thought!

  20. Dry As A Dead Dingoes Donger says:

    JIMMYCZZ says: 22/02/2012 at 2:05 am
    “Any chance we can stop the embedded videos please? They add nothing to the discussion and are more suited to other places like KDS.”

    No, please no! As an over sea’s expat I don’t get to see the news/doco clips that are on the Scottish TV Media so I say keep them coming.

  21. Oor Wullie says:

    JIMMYCZZ says:
    22/02/2012 at 2:05 am

    Any chance we can stop the embedded videos please? They add nothing to the discussion and are more suited to other places like KDS.

    Not posting videos should be the norm.

    But there must be room for exceptions.

    I thought the ‘Explaining Debt’ video was hilarious and in keeping with the ethos of this blog.

  22. JIMMYCZZ says:

    I bow to the needs of our overseas friends 🙂

  23. Oor Wullie says:

    Tommy says:
    22/02/2012 at 12:21 am

    I notice Traynor’s remarks that Whyte’s offer to ‘give’ his shares to the Rangers fans was meaningless since….”the fans had already paid for the shares through the TicketUs deal.”

    Not so.

    Whyte received the £24mill from TicketUs on the basis that the money would be re-paid by the future sale of season tickets to Rangers fans.

    Not the same thing at all.

    There will be no sale of season tickets in the future if Rangers are out of business, so it is accurate to say that it is TicketUs that have unwittingly paid the LloydsTSB debt.

    Unless Ticketus have some form of security for the £24mill, it may well be that they are the last owners of Rangers Football Club.

    As soon as they give Craig his one pound coin of course.

  24. Oor Wullie says:

    Hugh McEwan says:
    22/02/2012 at 1:39 am

    OnandOnandOnand says:
    22/02/2012 at 1:32 am

    Girls, girls…..enough!….Please!

  25. Fergus15 says:

    A nation in mourning? Crippled with austerity measures for years to come, genuine concern for jobs and well being, a show of public outcry at the impact on their wider society and culture. Living beyond their means for years and having unaffordable pension schemes as well as an alleged tax avoidance culture. Politations expressing concern for the ‘fabric’ of society and the need to have a financial structural overhaul as well as protecting the interests of ‘the peeple’. No I wasn’t watching the STV coverage of Rangers (in administration) but BBC 24 coverage of Greece. Perhaps our friends in Govan need to look over their shoulder and recognise that mismanagement of financial affairs have devestating impacts not just for areas of social entertainment but for countries and nations as a whole.

  26. Auldheid says:

    Lucculent Sam says:

    22/02/2012 at 3:19 am

    It should not be difficult to create a number of scenarios to identify what might work and what will not.

    A proper cost benefot analysis would show the impact of the variables changing and what changes might be acceptable. For example a ten year repayment plan of say £7M a year might cost in, but for a number of reasons ten years might not be acceptable.

    The area for squeeze will be player wages, this can drop quite considerably from current levels and still turn out a decent SPL side. The imponderable is the support such a side would guarantee.

    I am not putting forward my plan, I am saying HMRC/Treasury guys do this for a living and advise Ministers accordingly and the possibility they might come up with an acceptable scenario should not be ruled out.

  27. Peter says:

    Is anyone aware if pension payments taken from players salaries have found their way to the correct source?

  28. Stu says:

    They’ve announced on my local news that a team that went into administration a few days ago(I can’t remember their name, but they’re on the English football pyramid somewhere) has started to lay off players and employees.

    On a related note, have the administrators for Rangers announced any cuts backs yet?

  29. RobbieRaesideis says:

    Good evening all, from a first time poster. I’ve been reading this over the last few months, but haven’t posted anything, because this excellent blog and comments have been answering my questions before I even knew what those questions were. I apologise if this topic has been covered already, but the sheer weight of material on here means I haven’t time to read everything.

    My speculation is that Cowdenbeath FC may become the new Rangers. It started a few weeks ago when I read a comment on Hibs.net that may have been made in jest. http://www.hibs.net/showthread.php?227560-Got-to-feel-sorry-for-Rangers

    I smiled when I read that, but I’m a Fifer, and I know about Cowdenbeath’s problems with tenancy of their ground, so I did some Googling. I found a thread on p&b where supporters discuss the situation at the club. http://www.pieandbovril.com/forum/index.php/topic/154871-cowdenbeath-fc-the-way-forward/page__st__25

    It seems that the club have sold the ground to a parent company, are renting it back and using the proceeds to pay unsustainable wages in a big push to get into the First Division, (sound familiar?) Even their own supporters agree that establishing themselves in that division is a bit beyond the reach of a team with gates of only a few hundred. It doesn’t seem like the best plan for the long term future.

    A news story where the Chairman confirms that the club must move out of the ground by end of next season. http://www.centralfifetimes.com/mobile/news/cowdenbeath/articles/2011/04/07/412125-move-is-a-must/

    A check on the latest strip design shows that they’ve chosen to include a bit of red after nearly half a century in just blue & white, looks a bit familiar. The same page also states that the club was formerly known as Cowdenbeath Rangers, isn’t that interesting. http://www.historicalkits.co.uk/Scottish_Football_League/Cowdenbeath/Cowdenbeath.htm

    So, 2+2=5, I think Rangers will be liquidated and Donald Findlay will rent Ibrox for Cowdenbeath Rangers. HMRC will try to invoke the phoenix rules, but oor Donald will argue that they haven’t taken Rangers name, that it’s the same strip they played in last year, and that they’ve been needing a new ground for some time. And the new Rangers will start with no debt in the First Division and be back in the SPL the season after next.


  30. Stevie says:

    Oh, I’d be MORE than happy with that to be true RobbieRaesideis! Sure I’d be pissed off that they’d get away with what they owe, but the big plus for me on this is – that they could UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES then try to associate Glasgow Rangers FC’s history with this club – as the lie would mean that the only history they could be proud of now, would be –


    Scottish First Division:[5]
    1913–14, 1914–15, 1938–39

    Scottish Third Division:

    Taken from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cowdenbeath_F.C.#Honours

    So, I say – please let it be true! That would be so feckin funny!

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