A Permanent Embarrassment And An Occasional Disgrace

The late, great Ian Archer wrote the famous words in the title above for an article in The Glasgow Herald in October 1976. Rangers supporters had just rioted in Birmingham following a friendly with Aston Villa. Back then, football clubs generally were shamed by the actions of fans. I doubt that Archer could ever have imagined the scale of boardroom malfeasance that now surrounds Rangers. The revelations of how the club funded its success in recent years make a mockery of our game as a fair sport. The damage done goes far beyond mere trophies. Almost every other club tried to keep pace with Rangers by throwing fortunes at often second-rate foreign players while ignoring the need to develop domestic talent.

When making claims about the damage created by Rangers previously, some accused me of exaggeration. Yet after yesterday’s events- including the court drama that overturned the club’s 12-month signing ban- few observers could avoid drawing the conclusion that Rangers are now simply a disaster for the Scottish game.

Sporting integrity has been shredded. Speaking of which- have Rangers complied with the SPL’s demands for access to the commercial documents regarding the ‘unofficial payments’ issue yet? If not- why not? There comes a point where you have to start wondering what documents were destroyed by those “Shred It” machines for which the club has not yet paid.

Scottish football creditors will get almost nothing in the proposed CVA. In the choice of paying football creditors to limit punishment from the SFA & SPL versus the certainty of HMRC refusing to sign off on the deal, Duff & Phelps have chosen to screw the clubs who sold players to Rangers the past year or so.  They will never get the money they were promised. (More on the HMRC’s conditions for a CVA later).

All manner of underhand methods appear to have been a routine part of putting in a shift at the top of the marble staircase for at least a decade.

And now, just when things seemed as if they could not get much worse, Rangers have invoked the threat of mutually assured destruction for the SFA & SPL. As has been well documented elsewhere, going to court to get the SFA’s 12-month registration ban thrown-out places all of Scottish football in jeopardy.  FIFA and UEFA will not take this lying down.

In all of this pandemonium, there has not been anything vaguely like an apology from the club or the individuals responsible for leading our game to the precipice. There has been nothing except snarling arrogance plus a stream of veiled threats and intimidation from people who should really know better.

Throughout this entire saga, I have not wanted Rangers expelled from Scottish football. I did not think that it was even remotely possible and I would have questioned whether it would have been in the best interests of the game. I did want an acknowledgement of what happened. I did want meaningful punishment. However, there comes a point where enough is enough.

Is the SPL such a roaring financial success that its current formula must be preserved at all costs? No. Is it possible that with the dead-weight of Rangers’ boots lifted from the Scottish game that attendances at many other clubs will rise along with their fans’ hopes of actually winning something? Absolutely.

Those who argue that Scottish football cannot succeed without Rangers have failed to quantify this fear-mongering. Yet posters on blogs like this one have demonstrated- in numerical detail- just how few additional home fans need to start attending at most clubs to wipe out the benefit of Rangers’ away support. The TV deal? It is not as if it delivers fabulous riches to any club as it stands.  Clubs can trim costs (as they should) and would survive fine in the short-term.  In the medium and long-run, there is every reason to believe that Scottish football would be revitalised. The last time Rangers were in “crisis”, Scottish football thrived- with Aberdeen and Dundee United regularly sharing the spoils, financial as well as sporting, with Celtic during the early and mid-1980s.

There comes a time when Scottish football must act to prevent further damage. In doing so, it has a chance of making the stain of embarrassment less permanent. Of the options available, a one year ban from all competitions would seem to be a starting point for considering apt punishment. The next penalty down the list of official sanctions- exclusion from the Scottish Cup- would be far too lenient for a club that appears to have completed the entire 2011/12 season without paying any PAYE or NIC. Other clubs had to cut costs and make tough decisions to get through the year. Other clubs had to take roughly half of their staff budget and hand it over to HMRC. Even in administration, Rangers got to avoid cutting their playing squad by screwing the British taxpayer over yet again. Allow them off with a wrist-slap and many fans will just see Scottish football as a form of professional wrestling with Rangers FC as the scripted winner.

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.

5,597 Responses to A Permanent Embarrassment And An Occasional Disgrace

  1. HengistPod says:

    There’s a post on RM headed “Sorry”. To what is the world coming?

    Unfortunately, that site is so busy just now I can’t open the said post to find out whether a Bear has been allowed to break ranks.

  2. redetin says:

    Hugh McEwan says:
    12/06/2012 at 1:28 pm
    Let’s remind ourselves who Malcolm Cohen of BDO actually is.

    Excellent, Hugh.
    Cohen seems to be a man of experience and integrity whom I hope will see right through what has previously kept away from prying eyes and enquiring minds.

  3. tonybananas says:

    Jim says:
    12/06/2012 at 12:45 pm
    3 1 i
    Rate This

    Could it be that HMRC are happy for Charlie Green to get the club for £5.5 million ‘cos Craig Whyte’s floating charge is for a lot more than that anyway, so any extra cash raised just goes to him anyway. Whereas by selling low they stuff both him and Ticketus.


    If such a scenario stuffs Craig Whyte, why did he agree to sell to Green for a£1?

  4. stephenod72 says:

    Cheerio, Cheerio
    They WERE the billy boys.

  5. SpecialsWon says:

    Hoopy 7 says:

    12/06/2012 at 1:31 pm

    But Mr Charles is buying the assets….! Hector has his eyes on Whyte and Murray, a new Rangers will be paying tax, there’s no incentive to see them deceased, quite the opposite in fact.

  6. Tecumseh says:

    I wonder what Barcabhoys recent hints at further “troubles” will come to whenever they are aired . . ???

  7. Hugh McEwan says:

    SpecialsWon says:
    12/06/2012 at 1:27 pm


    LOL, aye right.

    You don’t seriously believe that do you.

  8. Stephen says:

    This takes massive pressure off the SFA. It’ll either be 3rd Division(if spartans haven’t got there first) or SPL with no sanctions. If the clubs even start Negotiating with Green or whoever about SPL entry, they’ll know they have the league over a barrel and start threatening to goto the 3rd if there are sanctions.

  9. Thornlyboy says:

    Well, it has finally happened – if not the end, either the beginning of the end or the end of the beginnin; there is a feeling of anti-climax, or pinching yourself, or whatever.

    First: Congratulations and thanks to RTC and all the heavyweight and profound bloggers here – you were right!

    Second: RFC 1872 is dead; there can be no business as usual.

    Third: The demise of the Govan Blue (to whom the Immortal Memory will be toasted every year – look out for LOL 1872) paradoxically makes it easier for football punishments to be administered to the corpse in terms of titles lost, etc. But ND and SR need to be pressurised to ensure this does not get ‘lost’ somewhere.

    Four: SPL chairs need to remain firm – it’s a favour to start NewClub in Div 3.

    Five: Outside the terminally ‘loyal’ there is no great sympathy for RFC*, so the amount of moral fibre needed is not great.

    Six: Expect no great outpouring of shock/horror from politicians, etc. HMRC have shown they have the cojones to take the decision, so no politico is going to bark. Not to pay taxes to HMQ in her Jubilee Year is not cricket (much less football).

    Seven: Don’t despair – we’ll have RTC for some time to come.

  10. Deembo says:

    I wonder how long it will be before the Blue Hyenas come around to view the fresh kill. Also expect lots of ‘Scottish football needs Sevco United’ stories in the next few days. Aint over yet methinks

  11. Yes yes this liquidation business is all very interesting I’m sure… but when will Gattuso be signing..Hmm?

  12. AllWhyteOnTheNight says:

    If I was Green I would be less than enthusiastic about completing the purchase of everything by the end of the week/beginning of next week.

    Yes he will be the proud owner of what some us perceive to be some assets on the cheap but he will also have a payroll of footballers and other staff TUPER across to his newco.

    Quite an expensive payroll for a company that has no idea if it will be able to ply its trade.

    The folly of D&P not making substantial redundancies is laid bare for everyone to see now.

    Newco now has to pay Steven Whittaker £20k a week for another 4 years, ha ha ha.

  13. JJ says:

    “As I say, way to much celebration of the demise of a Company Registration number.”


    You have not followed or understood any of this, have you LOL

  14. Hoopy 7 says:

    Sad to see the untimely death of Teofilio Stevenson of Cuba. A true sportsman who chose not to go after the money and remained an amateur.

  15. thesnooper says:

    Congratulations RTC and others in getting the truth out in a country full of pro Rangers spin and media.

    The battle is over,. . .the good guys have won!

  16. jockybhoy says:

    stephenod72 says: 12/06/2012 at 1:30 pm
    Surely HMRC could have told D&P months ago that they would always vote against any CVA?

    Anyone who knows anything (and a lot of us that know nothing) about HMRC’s attitude to CVAs said they would reject this option. I am sure if someone had come along and offered something like 60p in the pound HMRC may have given it some thought but the ridiclously low offer by Green and its lack of definition made it impossible to agree to, shirley?

    As for the idea that BDO will rubberstamp the sale of the team formerly known as Rangers’ assets for a bargain basement lump sum? Get real folks, BDO are employed to maximise the returns from TTFKARangers’ assets. They won’t approve the sale of all the bits they might get money for for £5.5m. No way. They would be failing in their duty if they let that through.

  17. VertWolf says:

    The cash loan that D&P say Green has already paid into what were RFC(IA) must somehow be ring-fenced so it can’t end up with the creditors on liquidation – does the ring-fencing also mean that the loan ends up getting repaid to Green from the proceeds of any asset sale if another party buys them? Assuming a substantial early repayment penalty on the loan Green then gets to walk away with a healthy profit from stumping up the cash for 2 weeks ! A perfect exit strategy?

  18. campsiejoe says:

    thesnooper @ 1:47 pm

    The battle may be over, but there is still a war to be won

  19. Tic 6709 says:

    Another Cocktail Hour coming up!! Will BDO be appointed on Friday? and if so will D&P cease administration immediately.According to what someone said that would mean they would have no authority to sell the assets,Zebedee promised to buy them but that does not mean he would get them,does it?

  20. Long Time Lurker says:

    Stuck in moderation [re-posted with edit]

    Jim Delah*unt‏@JimDelah*nt

    Clyde 1 SSB special tonight (Tues) at 6pm. Hugh Keevins and Darrell King with me plus all the reaction to today’s Rangers news.

    What chance of RTC getting a positive mention from the ‘panel’ for shining a light on this story, (amongst the commedy gold) 😉

  21. OLE MUNGO BHOY says:

    By the bye, Thusday is also the date for publication of the Sharp report into the allege “sweetheart” deals between HMRC and Vodaphone,Goldman Sachs and 3 other (as yet) unnames companies. HMRC is likely to be cleared of any wrongdoing but who could blame them for being extra sensitive to any suggestion of even the appearance of “an arrangement” between their chosen liquidator (BDO) and Green over disposal of assets.

    Oh happy days

  22. iainmcg says:

    Why do people think that the HMRC statements amount to an endorsement of the proposed sale to CG?
    They dont. They say that a sale of football assets will mean that football continues to be played at Ibrox. No more than that.
    My money is on BDO conducting a proper sale of the assets, football or otherwise. Which leaves out Charlie.
    P.S. A sense of justice prevailing occurs today. Well done RTC and his many able foot-soldiers.

  23. Hoopy 7 says:

    I do not want a new company in the SPL. They will continue to be pestiferous and polute society. We do not need them.

    This is a golden opportunity to clean up the game and I for one will never be back sitting in a cold stand watching a game if it comes to pass. Genuinely sorry for the creditors and the ordinary employees who may lose their jobs but there is only one man to blame, no not MBBCW, Murray and he knew what he was doing. MBBCW only added fuel to the fire.

    Murray and all of his directors should be squezzed for every last penny.

  24. Goosy says:

    AllWhyteOnTheNight says:

    12/06/2012 at 1:42 pm
    If I was Green I would be less than enthusiastic about completing the purchase of everything by the end of the week/beginning of next week.

    Yes he will be the proud owner of what some us perceive to be some assets on the cheap but he will also have a payroll of footballers and other staff TUPER across to his newco.
    Not sure about that
    In liquidation every employees is entitled to redundancy payments and becomes a free agent
    In TUPE
    i think every employee still has the right to leave if they forego their redundancy payment
    Meaning all the good players will walk if they have a better deal elsewhere This will apply especially to the younger players

  25. Auldheid says:

    SpecialsWon says:

    12/06/2012 at 1:27 pm

    Too early to state no sanctions. Rangers are coming with a begging bowl and are in no position to negotiate.

    Of all sanctions though 3 years without UEFA money is the most serious for their business model, in fact it means they will have to find a new one.

  26. Jimbo milligan says:

    I cant see BDO allowing the asset sale to green to take place straight away .

  27. Hoopy 7 says:

    God Bless RTC

  28. iainmcg says:

    Jockybhoy. @ 13.48
    Four mins between our posts, my friend. Curse my slow typing! You got there first.
    But we agree.

  29. weeminger says:

    Let’s not forget that it was only a week or so ago Green stated that Newclub could survive a year without football of any kind.

    Massive problem there is regaining fans lost over the year. If (and I’m not sure it’s likely) a team can be in place for the start of the season in any division they might convince the hordes to rally round them.

  30. Mark Dickson says:

    Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
    Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,
    Silence the flutes and with muffled drum
    Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.

    Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead
    Scribbling on the sky the message Rangers are Dead,
    Put crepe bows round the white necks of the public doves,
    Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.

    Rangers were my North, my South, my East and West,
    My working week and my Sunday rest,
    My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
    I thought that Rangers would last for ever: I was wrong.

    The 5 stars are not wanted now: put out every one;
    Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun;
    Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood.
    For nothing now can ever come to any good. 🙂

  31. AllWhyteOnTheNight says:

    Goosy, agreed but what other club is going to pay Whittaker £20k per week for the next 4 years.

    He just needs to keep pitching up at Ibrox every week to collect his pay cheque.

  32. jockybhoy says:

    Let’s hope BDO agree with us both Iainmcg 🙂

  33. Auldheid says:

    Stephen says:

    12/06/2012 at 1:38 pm

    This takes massive pressure off the SFA. It’ll either be 3rd Division(if spartans haven’t got there first) or SPL with no sanctions. If the clubs even start Negotiating with Green or whoever about SPL entry, they’ll know they have the league over a barrel and start threatening to goto the 3rd if there are sanctions.
    Actually it does not. A newco do not have a license and cannot get one not having three years accounts. The SFA have been asked what happens if a license is not granted but their answer was unclear.

    Its all here


  34. miki67 says:

    RTC nails it. Rogan Brogan nails it. CQN nails it. Kerrydale St. nails it. Celtic Underground nails it. Who else? Oh yeah,the msm were yesterday ‘reporting’ the stellar signings mooted by fantasists.
    Now the spotlight must be turned on the compromised and demonstrably corrupt SFA and SPL.
    Ogilvie,Doncaster and Regan have questions to answer. And if a spurious ‘newco’ is allowed free reign,then they could bring all Scottish football to an end,as UEFA and FIFA will not allow corruption on a grand scale to continue for much longer.
    The next few weeks should be enlightening.

  35. Jim Harkins says:

    At this point could one of the experts on the subject please state whether D&P are able, legally, to close the deal with Green for the assets before BDO take over.
    No timewasters, please.

  36. upmyloft says:

    But what if green owns them by friday when bdo take over

  37. patsymcd1888 says:

    A big thankyou to RTC and all the posters on here who have kept a lowly educated lady in the know with regards to the shambles that have been happening over at ibrokes. I have’nt bought any msm for months after coming on to RTC. The frustration you felt reading some of their tripe’ was enough to make you feel sick to the pit of your stomach. As I have happily revealed I might not be highly educated msm but I was’nt that thick either.

    Congratulations RTC

  38. Rocky sullivan says:

    Not really getting some of the deflation on here.

    There is an assumption that CG is going to seemlessly purchase the carcass for 5.5m this week and go marching on.

    BDO may have something to say about that. Secondly, does anyone seriously think that the quiet, reserved Brian Kennedy will now miss his chance to get back into the action?

    Additionally, I am picking up a vibe that some RFC(IL) fans are starting to blame CG for this on account of his recent bluster.

    This is only the beginning of the end. Plenty more fun and games afoot yet.

  39. CupidStunt says:

    Three years without European money whether they are in the SPL or not. The new club are going to be able to slash some of they’re costs if they go sfl3, but will be under pressure by fans to be competitive if in SPL. Where are they going to make more money, sfl3 or SPL, I’m not sure.

    It wouldn’t surprise me if a newco happily accepts sfl3, they have no history to protect and bears seem to have a stuf the SPL attitude. Must be dead certs to win promotion each year.

    They are heading for a massive drop in support either way so revenues are going to be down regardless of the league they are in.

  40. Timalloy says:

    Regarding suitable songs can I suggest for our Campbell Ogilvie
    “They’re coming to take you away, ha ha hee hee..”
    Plus I would like to congratulate all the Rangers fans with their prophetic song
    “There’s NOT A TEAM like the Glasgow Rangers..”

  41. Thornlyboy says:

    MD @13.01: Poetry, man, pure poetry! Rhyming couplets, even. Enjoyed all your posts, but we’re not done yet.

  42. Thereek says:

    “The club will continue to operate as it has always done” says Hughie’s statement.

    So that means cheating in any way needed to continue to be top dog. Don’t pay your bills. Don’t give a thought to any notion of fair play or decency. And get your spokesmen to lie, threaten and intimidate.

    Surely, surely Scottish fans deserve better. Both SFA tribunals and HMRC have demonstrated how to act in this fiasco.

    A huge but unambiguous responsibility now rests with the SPL chairmen. You know what is the correct thing to do. There is only one decision to be made regarding the spare SPL share.

    Great work from everyone connected with RTC.

  43. Goosy says:

    Whats the betting
    The SFA and SPL mutter a few crocodile tears and say nothing more until BDO rule out an asset sale to Green in favour of a leisurely auction?
    They then promote one club all through the leagues and set a deadline for NewClub applications to the 3rd Div?.
    Then RFC get suspended for 12m by AT while technically still a legal entity. ?

  44. SpecialsWon says:

    Green buys assets, New Club is entered into fixtures next season. Wears Blue Strip, same badge, plays at Ibrox.

    What’s changed? Other than Rangers escaping zillions in debt and sanction for actions of past Club; dual contracts, non payment of tax, going to the CoS?

    No New Club in the SF/PL!! But don’t bank on that.

  45. coyr1903 says:

    Sorry if this has been covered already but there is no way that Hughie Green is going to pick up the Ibrox/Murray Park and there Albion car park.

    I understand the panic that somehow they will get off the hook and come away debt free but the facts won’t allow that to happen.

    HMRC realise they stand to gain more by selling off the assets than they do through a 9p CVA. They will go to the Court of Session and get D&P removed and BDO in-place before there can be any asset sale. Even if D&P sell the assets this will be reversed by the courts.

    The players cannot not be transferred to a newco, they will be free to leave without any transfer fee coming in, triggered by liquidation or failure to have their wages paid on the 20th of this month.

    RFC will have ceased to be. The stadium and training ground will be disposed of to the highest bidder by HMRC appointed BDO.

    Even if a newco successfully bids for Ibrox they will have the issue of having no players. No working capital.

    The likely court action between Dave King, Craig Whyte, Ticketus et al will last months.

    The SPL season starts in 7 weeks.

    The SPL vote for a newco will not be necessary as there will no owners in place to apply for SPL membership in any event.

    So, stop worrying, sit back and enjoy the show :-).

  46. Tangerine Taysider says:

    I’m a firm subscriber to the battle is over but war is yet to be won school of thought.

    The importance of keeping up the pressure on the SPL Chairmen is critical. They must take decisions quickly so that there is certainty for Scottish football going forward. Setting aside the compelling arguments about morality and justice, admitting a new company with no established financial credibility risks further instability. The Chairmen need to give Dunfermline or Dundee as much time to prepare as they can, so it’s time to pull the collective digits out now!

    Also am I right in thinking we need to guard against an attempted back door entry? The owners of St Mirren, Cowdenbeath others? must not sell their supporters short.

    This could be the turning point, the start of a new era for Scottish football, but the next few days and weeks are critical.

  47. Thornlyboy says:

    MD: After WHA I now realise, but very clever all the same. And catches the mood of mock-horror.

  48. “What’s changed? Other than Rangers escaping zillions in debt and sanction for actions of past Club; dual contracts, non payment of tax, going to the CoS?”

    It won’t be Rangers though. Even if Sevco United playing at Poundland staduim call themselves Rangers we and they will know that club is no more.

    RIP (No flowers by request)

  49. Dave B says:

    HMRC say that football assets can be sold to a new company.

    They do not say that it will be Green’s new company.

  50. Hoopy 7 says:

    I wonder how many Celtic players will be sold in the MSM daily junk over the next week or so. Anything to deflect attention from the real story.

    We must be resolute because the war is not over. The dark forces will emerge from their lairs spitting and snarling. Do not expect them to go silently into the abyss.

    Integrity is not a negotiable commodity.

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