Wrapping It All Up


On 27th March 2011, this blog started what was to become a remarkable odyssey. Attracting a range of very well qualified contributors from across the Scottish professional world, this blog quickly grew to become the place for informed debate on the subject of the disintegration of Rangers.  It was also behind the vast majority of the factual revelations on this sorry story until it went mainstream with the broadcast of the BBC Scotland documentary “Rangers- The Men Who Sold The Jerseys” in late May 2012.

The motivation to write this blog was fired by a fear that backroom deals would allow Rangers to escape responsibility for its actions. After Darrell King (Evening Times & The Herald) rushed to get the first stories with specifics about Rangers’ tax problems into print in April 2010, the Scottish media (including King) implemented a policy of black-out and denial. In the silence of the first few months of 2011, it was feared that this entire story might run its course and never be reported. Indeed, the First Tier Tribunal (Tax) managed to complete two weeks of sitting in October / November 2010 without meriting a mention in the mainstream media.

Looking back, the idea of a deal or that Rangers could escape the consequences of their actions seems hard to believe. We can debate the probability that the required series of dark fixes could ever have happened, but in early 2011, it was an unacceptable possibility. The goal of this blog was simply to reveal the facts of the situation- no more and no less. The reputation of this blog grew because it was obvious that it contained facts, interpretations, and explanations not available elsewhere.  Although in more recent months the replies  began to look increasingly like a Celtic messageboard, the quality of discussion has always been of a high standard. (Sincere thanks to all contributors- and a special thanks to a few people who came forward with much more than just taxi driver tales and brother-in-law rumours. You know who you are!)

In starting this blog, armed with most of the facts that are now in the public domain, Rangers’ insolvency at some point in the near future was a certainty. What could not be predicted at that time was the meltdown that followed: liquidation and a new club forced to start in Division 3. Especially pleasing was the way supporters of every remaining club in Scotland came together to demand fairness and justice. Institutional efforts to forget 11 years of cheating met with a furious reaction from the most important people in the game- the fans. The availability of the facts helped everyone involved in this saga to make informed decisions.

That Rangers were forced to liquidate, form a new club, and restart in SFL Division 3 is a fair outcome. The last remaining task is to ensure that the sporting records are adjusted to account for the 5 SPL titles, 4 Scottish Cups, and 6 Scottish League Cups won during the 11 years of paying players with money they did not have. Drastic player cuts, or insolvency, sometime in the 2006-08 period would have been a virtual certainty if Rangers had not been avoiding tax. It is worth emphasising that had Rangers paid these players the same net salaries during the EBT period of 2001-2011, their wage bill would have been almost £50m higher (unadjusted for inflation). That extra £50m would have had to have been paid by Lloyds / HBOS or a chainsaw taken to the playing squad. This is the value of the financial advantage gained prior to Craig Whyte taking over at Ibrox.

Once the First Tier Tribunal (Tax) finally rules, the SFA will have to act. If, as I expect, that the FTT finds that Rangers had been knowingly operating an illegal implementation of the EBT scheme, it would discredit every trophy ever won in Scottish football if the honours acquired by Rangers during this time are not withdrawn. It is for others to decide if new winners should be appointed, but trophies gained through illegal means cannot be allowed to stand. Please do not believe the rubbish that somehow Rangers declared what they were doing to the SFA. You can see a typical “declaration” here. It does not even say that players were using the scheme. It does not say that any payments were made outside of contracts given to the SFA or SPL. It does not provide anything that would have let a tax expert know that something was amiss let alone football administrators- who are simply not qualified to do any kind of forensic accounting analysis. So let us stop with this “it was in the annual accounts” nonsense!

Short of assisting with interpreting the FTT findings (if necessary), the work of this blog is now complete. I urge you all to keep the pressure on the SFA to ensure that the last chapter of this story sees that justice is done.

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.

934 Responses to Wrapping It All Up

  1. Auldheid says:

    BartinMain says:

    02/08/2012 at 1:10 pm

    In my player wage calculator I had repayments to Ticketus from SB sales as a key factor. You can set the percentgae to zero or any amount, but when I set the sheet up I my suspicions were that Ticketus were somewhere in the background because the ONLY way they will get their money back is to put bums on seats at Ibrox, so that reported linkage does not surprise me.

  2. Mark Dickson says:

    Bartin,

    Was it not David Grier of Duff & Phelps that helped set up the deal with Ticketus? The same Duff & Phelps that will have been required to sign off on the new Rangers owners & executives as fit & proper persons. It is indeed a tangled web.

  3. Auldheid says:

    Hugh McEwan says:

    02/08/2012 at 1:35 pm

    The interesting thing is that those wishing to wrest control of “Rangers” from Greene do so because they want all of the ticket money proceeds to be reflected on the field of play.

    You have to admire their determination and tenacity not to pay past debts and avoid future ones.

  4. Mark Dickson says:

    Auldheid,

    Whether we continue to fly under the RTC banner or move to a new blog is in some ways irrelevant. Whether we all stay here or move doesn’t really matter to me as long as we have some way to continue. RTC has stated the intention to wind this down and we know that after a set number of posts or time period that for whatever reason wordpress stops working properly.

    PL set up a continuity blog so we’d all have somewhere active to continue that looks & feels just like here but if RTC can find a way or time that we can all stay here then that is fine too. If RTC decides to close this place we can move – if RTC can be persuaded to keep this blog open then we’ll stay. It’s all good. 🙂

  5. Hugh McEwan says:

    Auldheid says:
    02/08/2012 at 1:36 pm

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

    If Ticketus receive money from Sevco then HMRC will know about it. They have access to their records.

    I don’t imagine they will be terribly happy if Ticketus start to rake in large amounts of tax from Rangers’ descendants whilst HMRC are left getting nothing.

  6. Sweetie Paper Rustler says:

    I note that LM Logistics resurface in the string of companies behind the latest string behind the mess that is Sevco. I believe that is a company belonging to the Whyte Knight.
    Hmmmm!! Curious and curiouser..

  7. Mark Dickson says:

    Hugh would it not be the case that those who funded Ticketus previous involvement in Rangers are essentially the same people now funding the acquisition and financing of the club and when they sell 49.9% of the club to the fans they will still retain 51% control and recoup a big chunk of their investment that way?

  8. Mark Dickson says:

    Hugh would it not be the case that those who funded Ticketus previous involvement in Rangers are essentially the same people now funding the acquisition and financing of the club and when they sell 49.9% of the club to the fans they will still retain 51% control and recoup a big chvnk of their investment that way?

  9. Private Land says:

    Mark Dickson says:

    02/08/2012 at 1:46 pm

    Auldheid,

    Whether we continue to fly under the RTC banner or move to a new blog is in some ways irrelevant. Whether we all stay here or move doesn’t really matter to me as long as we have some way to continue. RTC has stated the intention to wind this down and we know that after a set number of posts or time period that for whatever reason wordpress stops working properly.

    PL set up a continuity blog so we’d all have somewhere active to continue that looks & feels just like here but if RTC can find a way or time that we can all stay here then that is fine too. If RTC decides to close this place we can move – if RTC can be persuaded to keep this blog open then we’ll stay. It’s all good.
    ________________________________________________________________________

    That’s pretty much what I think. The other blog lies in readiness to answer the call so to speak. I am still of the opinion that RTC was being fairly clear about his intention to wind up this blog, but there is no pressing need to hurry.

    My thoughts, following RTC’s last post were that there should be as seamless a transition as possible when RTC wound up. There is no doubt that the ability to effect this change has been achieved, and The Scottish Football Monitor lies in wait, watching, listening 🙂

  10. manandboy says:

    Auldheid says:
    02/08/2012 at 12:27 pm
    1 0 i Rate This

    manandboy says:

    02/08/2012 at 12:23 pm

    I’m not sure if you are to old or two young ( I’m a pensioner ) and it certainly requires a bit of thought and concentration, but it provides a discipline to actually make things happen.
    __________________________________________________________________________________

    Thanks for that Auldheid.

    I’m all in favour of a bit of thought and concentration and no less discipline.

    RTC’s final words (above) are :-

    “I urge you all to keep the pressure on the SFA to ensure that the last chapter of this story sees that justice is done.”

    That clearly expresses what RTC would like us all to do.

    To me that means to keep on doing what this site has been doing for the last 18 months – and all without a logframe, useful though that might be to some individuals in some circumstances.

    As for ‘too young or too old’ – I use a different timeframe.

  11. Mark Dickson says:

    Would the SFA have ever used Ticketus to access £££££££ by pre-selling some Hampden tickets?

  12. james larkin says:

    sorry for off topic…

    if celtic get past HJK…who are the candidates we will face in the last CLQ round?

  13. Mark Dickson says:

    james larkin says:
    02/08/2012 at 2:13 pm
    0 0 Rate This
    sorry for off topic…

    if celtic get past HJK…who are the candidates we will face in the last CLQ round?
    =================================================================

    After HJK you get DFS or B&Q but in Rangers case after SPL + D&P they got SFL and BDO.

    perhaps kerrydale street will have your answers. 🙂

  14. Logie says:

    If this post works, I’ll be amazed (having never succeeded in posting on RTC but have managed to on SFM)…

  15. Tic 6709 says:

    Is it possible that Yorkie is about to do the same as MBB,not pay anybody for a few months,go into administration, then become the preferred creditor have a fire sale,keep the ST money and anything else they can get their hands on and b_gger off?.would they get away with it? Need some help here.Is any of that possible,or should i just finish my book (reading).Would that give him enough cash to pay back Ticketus.
    Mark,do you think he has any intention of selling to the fans,or just a story to get more money ?.
    Could HMRC stop them? If that scenario was played out could anybody Prosecute them?.

  16. Logie says:

    Ffs, success! So, Now I can agree with other comments that we stay here if possible, and move to SFM if/when we have to!

  17. Mark Dickson says:

    Tic 6709 says:
    02/08/2012 at 2:23 pm
    =====================================================================

    Tic – they bought 100% of the club for £5.5M yet they plan to sell 49% to the fans for a whole lot more than indeed several multiples was the figures i seen quoted. They also want to sign a few marguee players (for SFL 3rd division) level to try to keep McCoist on board and convince the fans that they really are still Rangers which they hope will bring in the ST sales to enable them to run the club and achieve enough supporter buy in that they can have a successful share issue and give half the club back to the fans ………… but whether Brown & Smith and others can keep the pressure on them, persuade the fans to keep their money in their pockets and starve out Green & the Sevco consortium then who knows?

    I didn’t think they will simply repeat Whyte’s trick of not paying anybody – if even for the fact suppliers etc will be wanting paid up front and limited credit terms wherever possible.

    I don’t think they will end up in administration but I do think they will end up walking away – but whether they walk away with their pockets stuffed full of gers fans money then it depends how good a job they do of convincing the Bears that Rangers are still alive how much they need them.

  18. redetin says:

    Private Land says:
    02/08/2012 at 2:09 pm
    _____________________

    We have plenty of subject matter for future posts here or on newco RTC :). A permalink from the new blog to RTC will ensure we preserve the continuity.

    Meanwhile, I am just about to head south of my usual territory to watch Dundee Utd v Dynamo Moskva; mibbe I’ll even beh a peh.

    There’s never nae bather fae me!
    http://tinyurl.com/cuc5wyl

  19. tigertim says:

    Interesting in the Rangers season ticket notes 1& 8 appear to be the same.
    It also looks like the catering is up in the air, cash only bar, no table reservations etc:-

    SEASON TICKET – GENERAL TERMS AND CONDITIONS
    1. For operational and financial reasons, subject to renewal uptake, the Club has the right to move your season ticket to another seat.
    2. Season tickets will be issued in the form of a Smartcard.
    3. Season tickets are issued subject to the holder or nominee complying with the Conditions of Issue and Ground Regulations
    (Section 6).
    4. Lost, stolen or damaged Smartcards will incur a £5 replacement fee per card.
    5. Ticket reprints as a result of forgotten Smartcards will incur a £5 administration fee per ticket.
    6. Rangers Football Club, in conjunction with the relevant Football Authority, reserves the right to alter the published date
    and/or kick-off time of any fixture at any time.
    7. Rangers Football Club reserves the right to refuse entry to the Stadium where the season ticket holder has an outstanding
    debt to the Club.
    8. Rangers Football Club reserves the right to relocate the season ticket holder or nominee to any other seat in the Stadium at
    any time.

    Click to access Terms%20&%20Conditions%202012.pdf

  20. cjlehan says:

    The Orwell prize

    Delighted to announce that for tomorrows Friday news we will be publishing a piece by @rangerstaxcase on weighting polotics

  21. cjlehan says:

    Writing politics- jeez touchscreen phones!!

  22. iamacant says:

    tigertim says:
    02/08/2012 at 2:46 pm

    7. Rangers Football Club reserves the right to refuse entry to the Stadium where the season ticket holder has an outstanding debt to the Club.
    ————————————————————————————————————-
    I’m now cleaning my laptop screen at that one as just spat oot my tea – thats a belter 🙂 🙂 🙂

    Oh the irony.

  23. threeamigos says:

    There are several comments here about maintaining a level of consistency and continuity in order to keep up the pressure on the football authorities.So,shouldn’t we all be posting on the one site.Whether we like it or not,RTC has done his/her bit and handed the baton over.Personally,I think we should all post on the new blog Scottish Football Monitor as per the poll.I can understand the reluctance to move over,I feel a bit bereft myself at RTC calling time.However,I’m sure he/she /they will post on the new blog when they have something to say.

  24. james larkin says:

    tigertim
    8. Rangers Football Club reserves the right to relocate the season ticket holder or nominee to any other seat in the Stadium at
    any time
    ——————————————————————————————————-

    maybe they plan to corral the hordes thus allowing sevco to reduce police numbers and subsequent costs ?

  25. The Red Telephone says:

    I hope posters don’t carp on about fish in the new site.

  26. Tic 6709 says:

    Mark Dickson @2.33pm. Thanks Mark,as you may have guessed i dont know much about business. Another thing that confused me was that someone mentioned that after D&P get their money,the Real price of the buyout was £1.5Mill. Do you think if this is true that BDO would abort the whole deal.There is no way in Hell that this was not a stitch-up for Ticketus.
    Sorry for all the daft questions.
    There were better offers on the table and yet D&P accepted Yorkie?is there any Legal method to find out who exactly owns what,and who the backers are?again if not why not? I demand transparency

  27. Goosy says:

    A lateral thought
    Does a football debt have a legal definition? eg Is it limited to transfer fees, payment for tickets etc
    Or
    Is it simply a debt of any description owed to another football club?
    I`m wondering if the payment of football debts in full by the asset purchaser of a Club in liquidation is evidence of phoenix activity?
    If football debts are recognised by HMRC as having some form of dispensation which enables phoenixism to be discounted I would have thought that these debts would indeed have a definition

    If so

    Does the damage done to toilet facilities etc during the Old Firm game on 27 Dec qualify as a legitimate football debt?
    If not will this debt be repaid

  28. Mark Dickson says:

    RTC after some debate and a multi-option poll the “corruption” part of the blog name was dropped and subsequently the new blog-site is the much less contentious and more adult sounding http://scottishfootballmonitor.wordpress.com/

    Hopefully you can leave a permanent link to the new site.

    Much appreciated and thanks again for all your great work it was a pleasure. 🙂

  29. MercDoc says:

    longtimelurker, your quite right, my humblest apologies

  30. john clarke says:

    The Red Telephone says:
    02/08/2012 at 3:33 pm
    I hope posters don’t carp on about fish in the new site.
    —-
    Aye, but you don’t want people to clam up a’thegether, eh? We need a wee ray o’ sunshine to warm the cockles o’ the heart from time to time.

    Seriously, I’m still in a wee state o’shock at the closing of the RTC blog as such. But the steps so far taken to try to ensure continuity are praiseworthy and seem to command the respect and agreement of most.

    As others have remarked, there is a long way to go yet before the Augean stables are cleaned and disinfected ( e.g Campbell Ogilvie MUST go, and David Longmuir’s volt-face has to be thoroughly examined) judging just by Regan’s self-justifying and self- congratulatiry comments the other day.
    We must stay absolutely focussed , despite the fact that we are into the immediate pleasures of
    watching and talking about actual football.

  31. Zilch says:

    In RTC We Trust

    RTC has lifted the lid on corruption in Scottish football in a way that no mainstream journalist has ever dared. He / she has done so with great bravery, style and with an asolute focus on getting the message across at the right time and in the right manner. As a fan of Scottish football I will forever be indebted. Thanks, chapeau and Wow! – all of these and more.

    Like many other readers of this forum I was a bit shocked when we were told it was time to wrap it all up. Mrs Zilch thought there had been a death when she saw my droopn coupn!

    The decision to wrap up is RTC’s to take as and when RTC sees fit. I also think RTC has a right to protect the legacy of the project as RTC sees fit.

    As many other, more eloquent posters have said – there is plenty of business left to discuss. So we have to get over the grief and look to the future.

    It is clear that one of the big developments associated with this blog has been the formation of a community of fans from all parts of the country who are determined to fight against corruption in our game and have discovered, through RTC, the means to take up the fight. For that we should be forever grateful.

    Whether it continues here on RTC or over on SFM, united we should stand.

    RTC – You Are Legend. Muchos Gracias!

  32. mikee says:

    Rtc great job well done good luck for the future

  33. Essex beancounter says:

    The Red Telephone says:
    02/08/2012 at 3:33 pm
    4 3 i
    Rate This

    I hope posters don’t carp on about fish in the new site.

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

    …or Valentine’s Day cocktails…!

  34. lastonetoleaveturnoutthelights says:

    The last few hours of RTC should feel like an ending. And in some ways there is much to regret.
    What has happened here in the last 18 months has been astonishing. The complacent, corrupt placemen in Scottish Football and the complicit reptiles in the MSM would have perpetrated another cover up on behalf of the establishment club. And that would have shamed our game, our society and our people yet again.

    A country trying to become a nation that doesn’t have unbiased and incorruptible institutions doesn’t deserve self determination, after all whose interests would be served by that self determinant governing elite?

    RTC hasn’t just shone a light into the dark places it has illuminated the rats that lurk there for what they are.

    Nothing need ever be the same again. So when the SFA and SPL attempt to gerrymander under the cover of darkness we can trust that the hand on the lightswitch is never very far away.

    That’s why this must not be an ending. The new blog must carry on the fight and must have the quality of contribution and singularity of purpose to expose any attempts to govern our game in the interests of the few. We must challenge the complacent, corpulent media and prevent them dictating an agenda that serves their preferences instead of fairly addressing the needs of us all.

    In short, nothing less than integrity will do at each and every turn. RTC has allowed us to achieve much and to hope that this will be teh case.

    So, once again, thank you RTC. Please leave these blog postings and comments as an archive source. Please reappear when the FTT decision is published and at selected, other crucial times.

    The book will be bought, the chariatable donation will be made. Health and success to you and yours.

    So, awa’ tae Scottish Football Monitor it is!

  35. Paulsatim says:

    james larkin says:
    02/08/2012 at 3:13 pm
    4 0 Rate This
    tigertim
    8. Rangers Football Club reserves the right to relocate the season ticket holder or nominee to any other seat in the Stadium at
    any time
    ——————————————————————————————————-

    maybe they plan to corral the hordes thus allowing sevco to reduce police numbers and subsequent costs ?
    ==============
    they’ve also dropped the “The”

  36. Scott says:

    Tiverton why would you read through the conditions and terms of rangers season tickets..that really sounds obsessive..do you check all these details with your own club??do you actually have a season ticket with your own club?????

  37. frank's boy says:

    I go on holiday, thinking it’ll be good to get away, clear the head of the RFC (IA) goings on, break the daily reading habit of this blog. I even managed to forget my phone charger as if I was aiding and abetting myself.

    I walk out of the holiday complex on the second night and the first thing I see is a supermarket called “Alisuper” What chance do I have ? In the end, I can’t resist buying a new charger, only to find when the phone is loaded up that rtc is closing down !

    RTC, to use one of your words in your post, this blog has been a monument. I could list its many attributes but I have always been engaged by its tone of curious indignation setting of in search of the real stories behind this national disgrace. The community it has brought together is a source of hope for our national game.

    Like many, I would like to shake your hand one day.

  38. Scott says:

    Tigertim I meant..obsessed..

  39. jimthetim says:

    HELP please, not very savvy with blogging!
    How do I delete a blog I set up?
    I looked at the potential replacement site for this blog, recommended by RTC.
    The site prompted me to register, just like RTC’s site did. However, on receiving an acknowledgement by email, it appears I have set up my own blog!
    So, how can I delete this permanently.
    Many thanks.

  40. rantinrobin says:

    I do hope RTC you will continue to participate in the new forum.There has been something of a vacuum,of recent, with regard to ‘noise’ from the good guys.
    In particular ,Alex Thomson’s move back to the middle east has ensured the loss of our most vocative mouthpiece in the mainstream.
    I am currently irritated that the SPL said they would put out a statement,this week, on the dual contract enquiry.I suppose it is only Thursday, and as one post replied ,they may put something out Friday 9pm!
    Can we be assured of your continued presence on the new site?

  41. Mark Dickson says:

    The SPL are meeting tomorrow and we might get some further news or statement afterwards abut the EBT/Dual-Contracts enquiry although I doubt it would surprise anybody if Doncaster announces this is delayed and kicked into the long grass until after the FTT(T) finally publishes it’s findings.

    Did Alex Thomson ever get closer to finding out when the FTT might return a result or what the latest estimate of a timescale might be?

  42. Brenda says:

    RTC thank you so much and to all other posters, informed, intelligent, funny but mostly honest and loving the game, let’s hope a just ending is reached 🙂 love, luck and happiness to you all (oh dear I’ve gone all girlie) ;(

  43. iki says:

    rangerstaxcase says:
    03/08/2012 at 12:01
    To help move this along, I will close comment posting on here later tonight.
    =======
    Au revoir and I cannot say this loud enough nor often enough ……… thank you.

  44. Lord Wobbly says:

    Why would The Rangers Football Club Ltd be selling tickets for Rangers Football Club? Not only are these two clubs in different divisions, but the SPL club has no stadium and no players.

  45. Lord Wobbly says:

    Some good news before the site closes. SSN reporting that Stan Petrov’s leukaemia is in remission.

  46. Hugh McEwan says:

    Tic 6709 says:
    02/08/2012 at 2:23 pm

    Is it possible that Yorkie is about to do the same as MBB,not pay anybody for a few months,go into administration,

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

    He can’t really just stop paying people and put the business into administration.

    Rangers went into administration because they could not pay people as bills fell due. Simply refusing to pay people is not the same thing. Neither is removing all of the funds in order that the business will become insolvent.

    If Sevco simply refused to pay their bills then the creditors would take action to get their money. Including Court action such as arrestments.

  47. rantinrobin says:

    Hugh ,are you coming over to the new site?

  48. twopanda bears says:

    As we all know the 1990 Taylor Report obliged clubs to have all-seater stadiums. Hillsborough was caused by a failure of Police Control – so seating accepted as an idiot-proof solution.

    20 years ago sophisticated computer people movement modelling were not available to stadium designers. People movement computer aided programmes are now available and employed in the design in railways, shopping malls, airports and so on with no better example of the London Olympics. It’s first use is to improve people flows and identify risks of crowding or even crushing and any hotpots are re-configured or remodelled. Why not go back to some limited standing areas if can be safely designed. The Taylor report & seating regulations was over 20 years ago – that’s the stone age in computer design terms – adding [guessing a number 25%] increased ticket capacity with limited standing areas could make a huge cash difference to those sell-out European game opportunities or Cup Derbies – possibly improve atmosphere and choice – plus if money is tight and all other revenue streams seem to be maxed out – having some stadium standing areas is worth revisiting. The design tools are available to explore, and the costs of any remodelling would be vastly offest by incresed revenues

  49. Hugh McEwan says:

    Right, if that is officially it all it leaves for me to do is to thank you very much RTC and to wish all the very best to you and yours. It really has been great.

    Be safe and have a great life.

  50. campsiejoe says:

    RTC

    Before comments are finally closed, could I just say once again thank you for giving all of us bampots a platform to express our views and debate them
    We all owe you a debt of gratitude
    Please don’t be a stranger on the TSFM

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