Published on 22 Jun 2012

Bin the succulent lamb – it’s humble pie for ‘Rangers’

So – 4 July. US Independence Day. Ten in the morning. Hampden Park. The Scottish Premier League gathers for easily the most momentous decision in that League’s brief history (unless there is a change of plan).

Which means they’ll postpone, evade, sidestep or otherwise duck out of lancing the carbuncle once known as Rangers Football Club.

Or not.

For there’s precious little time, a league to be run and tellingly a lot of clubs saying they’ll vote how their fans wish.

Well, Mr SPL Club Chairmen, if that’s really so then you have to vote unanimously “NO” if my unscientific poll of around 1600 emails and tweets is anything to go by.

And I do mean unanimously – not a single message received saying new Rangers should be allowed to play in the SPL.

First up and first prize for wit, verve and style goes to this missive from an Aberdeen supporter, when I asked what club chairman should do on July 4th:

“Wearing a t-shirt, holding a sign and sporting a cap all with the word ‘NO’ written on it, the Aberdeen chairman should walk in denying it is a nice day, saying no, he didn’t ‘have a good journey’ and declining any offer of refreshment. At the start of the meeting, before the prelims are over with, Stewart Milne should stand up and shout ‘No’ across the table. He should repeat this mantra all the way to the car like a very poor 2 Unlimited tribute act and should not stop until he is safely out of Glasgow and up the M9. Just for the avoidance of doubt, ye ken?”

Scores of you say you’re unsure this vote should be taking place at all. As one emailer puts it, it should be a ‘no’:

“However, my main concern is that I am unsure a vote should even be taking place on that date, and the confusion which surrounds what the necessary majority should be for any such vote.”

There does seem a lack of clarity from the SPL about what majority is required for what exactly they are voting on in transferring the SPL share (membership in effect) from old to new Rangers. All I can say is I will try for clarity on this from the SPL next week when I’m back in the UK.

‘It’s a joke, Scottish football is a shambles’

Let us go to Edinburgh, a city currently harbouring some colourful club owners unafraid to speak their minds on the beautiful game. But we’ll reach Vlad in a second. First this:

“I’m a Hearts Fan, Hearts must vote no to a NewCo Rangers on 4 July.

Rangers have been getting away with cheating for years, they got 2nd place last season while withholding Tax and NI, what do the SPL & SFA do??? Absolutely nothing.

It’s a joke, Scottish football is a shambles.”

Not strictly true since the SFA have acted and arguably the SPL have sort of acted.  Yet so say all of yous, it seems, inwith and outwith Edinburgh too. The sense runs deep across fans that (fines, buying-ban, points deduction notwithstanding) “Rangers” have just not been punished. A feeling all the more profound given “Rangers” almost clinical inability as an institution to say the word “sorry”.

At the risk of coming over all Elton (well Bernie Taupin to be exact) sorry does seem more than the hardest word for Bain, Greig, Whyte, McClelland, Ogilvie (still incredibly not on gardening leave), Whyte, Murray, Smith, Duff and Phelps oh you do this I’m bored with lists and this one goes on and on…

So Vlad? Well I think I can say it’s a No from Hearts owner and media-critic Vladimir Romanov who wrote:

“Without these people football will become cleaner and stronger. Without Murdoch the whole of society will improve, in particular sport and culture.

“Supporters deserve a new beginning and have to accept the fact that their club has to start from the lower league, keeping order in the SPL and without creating unfair competition.”

Vlad’s on fire, wishing to take Murdoch Money out of the SPL along with “Rangers”.

I’m trying to contact him in Lithuania, I sense an interview though on legal grounds, possibly pre-recorded don’t you feel?

Ah..Vlad the Impaler…. Makes Alex Ferguson look like Shirley Temple.

Along with the ‘noes’ a huge consensus over what a ‘yes’ will mean. If fans are to be believed a mass exodus from the game from lifelong loyals across Scotland is likely. Let a Hibs fan speak for you all:

“I would like those running Hibernian FC to vote no to Newco. If Newco get into the SPL Scottish football is finished as far as I’m concerned, I’ll not be back. It will no longer be a sport, it’ll be nothing more than a corrupt business as far as I’m concerned and I will not put another penny into that.”

Calling your bluff?

But will he? Will you all? Will you really (as they say) “walk away”? If it’s a ‘yes’ then every ‘yes’ vote is a statement to call your bluff, the sense that fans cannot, will not, let go, no matter what they say.

Meanwhile in Motherwell, the sense from so many that too many with too much power in Scottish football are causing revulsion among fans by acting is if it’s about money, money, money, oh – and money:

“As a Motherwell fan, I’m sure I represent every fans’ views here by saying no to the newco. The club must put integrity before money. I would be disgusted with my club should we not show courage.  

What if …We take out a 500m loan, buy Messi and Ronaldo, pay their wages via EBT.

Next season we will win league, and domestic cups. We will liquidate next season but come back as newco “the Motherwell ” not paying any of the debt/tax, keeping our “tainted” trophies and sail back into the SPL?”

Well – UEFA? Far-fetched? Of course, but in principle not so far different from Ibrox in practice. The notion of phoenix-like ascending from the fires of liquidation to the cool green turf of the SPL top-flight is just plain offensive to many people, let alone fans of other SPL teams.

Or take this view – which if my inbox is anything to go by, would be endorsed by many “Rangers” fans too, here argued with eloquence and wit:

“From every fan I’ve sat in the pub with chewing the fat over this ongoing farce, from my seemingly torture tolerant friends who follow St Mirren to Inverness on Boxing Day for the meaningless 0-0 endurance tests, to the Green Brigade fanatics who won’t rest until “Sevco” are sent to Wales without a football to play with – all in unflinching agreement that they will not return to the stands next season if Rangers are involved in anything but a cup wildcard fixture –  it surely can’t be argued that Scottish Football will be better off, financially or otherwise, with a newco Rangers involved. 

If they are demoted though, justice is seen to be done by the public, Rangers (who will celebrate three league wins in the first three seasons, so hardly a tale of woe there either) are seen to be made to pay for their wrongdoings and clubs like Hearts, Motherwell and Dundee United start a season with a realistic crack of playing Champions League qualifiers in Malta or Albania the following year.

Everyone outside Govan feeds off the new sense of fair play and competition which has a proven record of boosting attendances in any sport and Celtic fans are chuffed with winning the league before having to decide what to buy the kids for Christmas.

They say that the TV stations always win in the end and even though they have little say in the vote this time, I fear it will be ESPN and Sky who benefit most with a huge uptake in the sports packages next season… and Old Firm games still available to broadcast.”

If there are big holes in this last scenario, I for one would like to know, as would lots of “start-again-in-div-3” Bluenoses. Seems a win-win all round.

And then there’s Falkirk. When I asked for SPL club supporters that’s pretty much what I got. Except Falkirk. Annoyed of Falkirk. What about Falkirk? Not fair of Falkirk. Falkirk of Falkirk.

So I give in. Patsy that I am. For sheer persistence and…and…whatever, here’s Fakirk speaking for fans of Scottish Football League clubs:

“Many clubs have slogged it out year after year for well over a century in various leagues and they all aim to reach the top. The idea that a new club are able to apply for SPL membership yet, clubs who have been in the game all this time are not allowed the same opportunity frankly bizarre. We could well be bypassed in our ambitions and over 100 years of effort, by a new club and we have no say in the matter. As far as I know not even courtesy of other clubs asking for an opinion or offer of an explanation.”

Ok – Falkirk. Happy? Happier? 

Finally let me leave you with this. It’s an extract from one of hundreds of letters from fans’ currently pouring into SPL clubs across Scotland imploring chairmen to vote ‘no’. Or here, to go with fans in the grounds, not the TV money from those in the sitting rooms. Dundee United in this case, but that’s irrelevant:

“A YES vote would be going against the wishes of more or less the entire United support. It would show that you value the money generated by the typical armchair fan – who rarely, if at all, attends matches in person) more than the hard earned money from the loyal fans who pay to watch United week in week out, season after season, decade after decade.”

We now know ESPN/Sky will fund SPL football they say, regardless of “Rangers” absence, if current indications are anything to go by.

The boss up at Inverness says the club’s had so many ‘No’ letters it cannot possibly answer them in person. The chairman says the club will base its vote on the overwhelming ‘no’ vote of Inverness Caledonian Thistle fans.

But…but…he also mentions the need to consider business implications too. Spot the get-out clause Mr Chairman.

For all the noisy, hysterical clamour from sections of the Glasgow press that “Rangers” must somehow be saved because, well because it sells papers – every day posties across Scotland rather more quietly send another message to football club chairmen all over Scotland: bin the succulent lamb – it’s humble pie for “Rangers” sake and for football’s sake.

You can follow Alex on Twitter @alextomo

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81 reader comments

  1. Philip Edwards says:

    Alex,

    Scottish football fans will no more desert in significant numbers than any other fans.

    The reason is fairly straightforward: it flies in the face of “loyalty.”

    But if the SFA cannot see this as an “enough is enough” moment then they never will.

    No question, Rangers should be booted out of Scottish professional league football to work their way up again.

    To coin a phrase, it’s the only thing they’ll understand.

  2. Sporting Integrity says:

    That last time (the now defunct) Rangers F.C. were in crisis in the 1980’s teams like Aberdeen and Dundee Utd. were not just winning league titles but were getting to European finals.

    And with the SPL becoming more competitive surely attendances for all clubs will go up?

    What about the fact that the clubs outside Celtic will now presumably be getting a bigger share of the existing TV deal?

    Can the wavering chairmen be more specific about the “business implications” they so mysteriously allude to?

  3. The Octagon says:

    Alex

    More of the chairmen are now making their decisions public and I think it’s music to the ears of every supporter of whatever club who wants to see the integrity of the competition restored. Cliche sounding I know but no less true for that.

    There will be no newco in the SPL. Thanks go to you, Mark Daly, Phil and RTC as well as people like Jim Spence & Stuart Cosgrove for giving a voice to fans who didn’t feel anyone in the SPL/SFA were listening.

    And a special thanks goes to those same fans who have acted to put pressure on their clubs to get us to where we now are. Start of a new, clean era in Scottish football.

  4. Tony Hendrix says:

    Celtic,Hibs,Hearts,Motherwell,Dundee Utd,Aberdeen.
    6 already,do we really need a vote on Newco?
    I doubt it very much,well done the fans of all these clubs,and a wee message to Sky/ESPN,as much as its good for armchair fans to watch football on tv,as I know many can’t go nowadays,the guys who go on a weekly basis are the ones who deserve better,not midday kickoffs on a bleak December day.

  5. miki67 says:

    The only thing that rfc(deceased) fans are sorry for is that their scurrilous ‘club’ got caught.

  6. shaun says:

    great article alex,

    how refreshing it is to read another jornalists outside scotland points of view on what is happenin at sevco fc. the journalists in scotland are too scared too ask the questions a dont know why because rangers fc are dead unless they are treating sevco fc as the same as rangers fc ps more succulent lamb.

  7. arabest says:

    Reminds me of a game at Ibrox way back, United 3- 0 up at half time, and a guy asked at the food stand, “Do you serve Humble Pie?”. They do now!

  8. Jenks says:

    Fantastic, summed up perfectly. Thanks!

  9. George Bailey says:

    Alex

    A short brief on why Falkirk supporters are aggrieved with the RFC situation. I’ve outlined what falkirk Football Club went through (leaving aside the fans efforts with Back The Bairns, an exemplary manager in Mr Alex Totten who understands all about dignity and the potential commercial effect on the local community)

    19 March 1998 – Provisional Liquidator appointed to The Falkirk Football and Athletic Club Limited.

    A local consortium made up of Douglas McIntyre, Colin McLachlan, Ann Joyce, William Moffat,Martin Ritchie, Colin Liddell and Campbell Christie (apologies if anyone missed out) undertook to invest £477,322 in the club and secure a loan of £1.4m from Stadium City Limited (Mr Healy).

    This was sufficient to allow the court to agree to a recall of the provisional liquidation appointment on 20 May 1998.

    This allowed the company (club) to continue trading and all creditors were paid as normal. (No pence in the £ deals). History in tact!

    Looking at these amounts – this cost a local, provincial club and investors the best part of £2m for a crumbling, well loved stadium (6,000 capacity mainly standing) and historic club.

    14 years down the line and RFC expect to get out of trouble by paying £5.5m for EVERYTHING RFC have and leaving behind the creditors. FFC don’t do walking away.

    The background to SPL issues is that FFC were refused promotion on two occasions – on the inception of the SPL the play off games were abolished mid season to allow the SPL to be formed. FFC lost out. In 2002/03 FFC were refused entry despite arranging to use an SPL compliant stadium to groundshare while construction of a new ground was completed. Groundsharing was then permitted within a season of that application.

    Other than that the fact that the SPL is a morally defunct and commercially inept enterprise set up for the benefit of the very few to the detriment of the Scottish game is neither here nor there.

    Yours
    Proud of Falkirk

  10. Iniquitous says:

    Alex:
    Excellent article. The tide is turning. With any luck, Lord Carloway will consign them to oblivion in some league where they can ultimately produce three years of audited accounts before applying for Division Three.
    Sheer arrogance, lack of contrition, veiled threats have all contributed to their own downfall. The next steps will surely be stripping of illegally gained titles.
    They are toast. The media and the singularly inept SFA alleged governing body have been complicit. Fans across Scotland will view with delight the demise of Ogilvie, Doncaster and Regan.
    Iniquitous

    1. Brian says:

      the SFA discussed changing their rules to disband the Independent Appellate Panel process before instructing Lord Carloway to sit in response to the Court of Session’s rejection of his previous judgement.

      well well well ,the desperate attempts to save the Newco continue

  11. shaungibson1888 says:

    Alex, brilliant piece, and I think the point I am now seeing is that the Scottish Media are way behind what the punter thinks.
    This is a game changer. 5 votes of NO will see Sevco 5088 banished from the SPL. Already Dundee United, Hearts and Aberdeen have said they will say no. So 2 more no’s and the game is up the pole.

    Shaun ;)

  12. Marty says:

    Fans of rival clubs want Rangers to be hammered. Well, what a shock. The chairmen of their clubs are scared of losing their ticket money and all concerned are trying to make out it’s all down to “sporting integrity”.

    1. HJC says:

      Marty, fans of rival fans do not want Rangers to be hammered, we all want the former Rangers to pay the price for decades of abuse of the system and it is about “sporting integrity” because that is what knits everything that is honest together. You may be judging everything from a former Rangers viewpoint but the problem there is that the former Rangers wouldn’t recognise “sporting integrity” if it fell on them. See reality, the former Rangers have been hammering everyone else for decades, but judgement cometh.

  13. davi says:

    a lot of fans meant it when they said “i wont return if rangers are voted in.i know i did.why should i PAY to watch a sport that is fixed in any way?.how can i go to my partner of 18 years and my son and ask if i can waste £100`s on a competition thats not open and fair in this economic climate?
    so VOTE NO TO NEWCO

  14. chris says:

    Good Blog..Has to be a no to NewCo. How can it be fair to the others teams in SFL…

    What about needing 3 years accounts to get into the 3rd division?

  15. P J Fox says:

    Too put it simply that was one of the most entertaining articles I ve ever read about this sorry saga. Properly laughed out loud at the Aberdeen fans take on the impending D-Day vote!
    Needless to say the article was informative into the bargain. Great balancing act.Long live Alex Thomson.

  16. Paul McGeachin says:

    ” no one likes us , we don’t care”. Very apt words from We are Rangers song. Rangers fans are probably the most enlightened in the country when it comes to the petty minded jealousy of the embittered minions who masquerade as moral guardians of Scottish football. The outpouring of hatred towards Rangers is testament to the inadequacies and inferiority of their lesser opponents who have hung onto their coat tails for over a century. These parasite clubs offer nothing in the bigger context of real world football, the European stage, which Rangers have have graced for 60 years, bringing honour and recognition to this inept footballing backwater, Scotland . Only Celtic by way of their over zealous bigoted minority fan base , have come close to being noticed regularly in European terms, although this was mostly back in the 60 s when competition was lacking. The fact that the little teams have any say in Rangers SPL future is as perverse as it is stupid, and we have many nonentity chairmen getting drunk on the publicity they are receiving at present, pontificating and sitting in judgement as though they were leading the Nuremberg trials. These normally insignificant chairmen could usually name their home crowds in person, and couldn’t be trusted to run a bath, let alone decide if a global footballing giant should be punished again under another trumped up charge. These moral guardians now insist they must listen to the hoards of the great unwashed” the fans ” when normally they wouldn’t give them the steam off their turds. Even Lawell has taken a back seat and shown a spectacular lack of leadership with his silence, no doubt ready to bitch and crow if and when” our day will come “. Every club in Scotland should have their last twenty years accounts forensically examined, and then we can see who casts the first stone. The famous Glasgow Rangers will survive and regroup in a short space of time. It is patently clear from recent events that the outpouring of hatred and bile directed at Rangers, that they are victims of their own stunning on field successes. The obvious concerted attempts to deal the Gers a fatal blow will ultimately fail and Rangers will once again take their true place at the pinnacle of Scottish football. The silly cheat allegations and childish alternative name derivatives( newco, secco etc) only show the fans of insignificant teams up for what they are, out of touch embittered clowns- the football equivalent of ” small man syndrome”. We shall return unbowed. We refuse to apologise for Murray and Whyte transgressions- we are RANGERS SUPER RANGERS, no one likes us , we don’t care!!!!!

    1. Paul N says:

      Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha etc etc

    2. P J Fox says:

      Good luck with your new football club! Hope it takes off alright.Looking forward to playing against them in a few years time.
      Stick with them in the early years and try not to become downhearted if things dont go all your on way. After all sport is all about competing fairly and within the rules!
      Given the track record of the oldco keep a close eye on any pesky new owners or directors. If they do wrong it’s the club who gets punished. C’est la vie I’m afraid. Corporate responsibility is a terminology worth becoming familiar with.
      And last but not least…remember to pay your bills!!

    3. John C F says:

      Paul, glad to see you’re back – and, as mad as ever! Rangers never ‘graced’ any football field in their history let alone a European one. But you are right on one thing; you are hated across the land by fans of clubs who you have cheated for at least a decade and bullied for almost your entire history. However, the future is yours for there are enough ‘lookylikey rangers’ to form a league of your own. Good luck in whatever division you find yourselves – you’ll need it!

    4. aussie1 says:

      Rangers in crisis: Supporters at war over £600k fighting fund as one group refuses to back Charles Green {22nd June 2012_Daily Record}

      WAR has broken out among Rangers fans over a fighting fund which contains more than £600,000. Administrators of the fund support Charles Green’s consortium but the Rangers Supporters’ Association are warning fans not to back the Yorkshire businessman.
      The cash has been raised since the club plunged into administration in February, with donations coming from all around the world. After a midweek meeting with Green and his chairman, Malcolm Murray, the Rangers Fans Fighting Fund leaders urged supporters to back the new owner by renewing their season tickets. Yesterday, however, some fans were unhappy with the information provided by the RFFF in the wake of the meeting – with one even taking to an internet forum to demand a REFUND of his donation to the fund, which now stands at £620,000.

      By the sounds of it the “we” should be reassessed because at the moment you are not exactly “standing united together” also referring to your statement “no one likes us, we don’t care” I think given the overwhelming evidence to the contrary this is quite an erroneous statement – however perhaps you feel the need to huddle support around you as you pour out the usual diatribe which is unfortunately prevalent amid your kind.

      I do feel somewhat horrid in saying this but; the world does not revolve around you no matter what the voices inside your head tell you. If you had even a morsel of intellect you would be aware there are longstanding Rangers Supporters (generations) and The Rangers, Newco supporters; who quite clearly state numerous opinions some very much in defence, some against and others undecided – contrasting opinions – various thoughts expressed from many that’s is the delight of “freedom of speech”. You’re blustering comments do not show you in a good light and can I just say__ you sound quite embittered?

      On an entirely different note (seeing as you know all there is to know about Rangers), being the lynchpin of the entire fabric of their existence that you are;

      Why have “SaveRangers.com” not passed along the £1m cheque from Alan MacKenzie (Western Australia), to the “Fighting Fund”? Has it even been sent to Scotland or are they keeping it in Australia to “fight and save Rangers” from a distance (as everyone appears to wish to do), and more importantly I hope he doesn’t forget to declare it on his tax___The Australian Tax Office are a whole lot less forgiving then HMRC!!

    5. Declan says:

      I read with interest your rant on Rangers but can I add one word to your last line, you have mistakenly written “we are” this should be “we WERE” rangers remember 1872-2012. the old club are no more your are THE rangers maybe, but whilst reading this i cannot comprehend why no one liked you and you didnt care maybe this new club will allow you to ditch the fascist sectarian past associated with the old club called rangers 1872-2012. Please give the newest club in Scotland the chance to evolve before transferring the old sectarian past of a now defunct embarrassment to society called rangers fc 1872-2012.

    6. Dogs says:

      what a load of pish…take your punishment like men….not nasty threatening little women with more bark than bite…and stop saying rangers as your club is dead…off you pop and buy your new Sevco 5088 scarf

    7. Sandy, Paisley says:

      Oh Paul, you made me laugh more than the original blog. You tell us Rangers have “graced” the European scene for more than 60 years. What stands out for you? When you were the first club in the history of European competition to be banned from defending their trophy due to your fans behaviour, or when you “graced” Crimewatch after the 2008 UEFA Cup Final? “only Celtic have come close”, presumably when they won the Big Cup???

      Comedy gold – you must be a Celtic fan in disguise, surely?

    8. Joseph says:

      everything you have just criticised other fans for is right there in your own message.
      P.s. do you not follow the news? Rangers are DEAD!!
      P.P.s enlightened when it comes to trashing towns like Manchester!
      You could well be the most deluded person on the planet! This season alone you have cheated every team in the SPL by having and unfair advantage ( not paying your taxes ). You team should have folded at Christmas. The only thing your team will be remembered for is for being the biggest scandal in Scottish footballing history. It’s the attitude of the rangers supporters, like your own that had caused the outpouring of hatred against your corrupt ex club. Good riddance!
      P.P.P.s open your eyes!

    9. AFC1984 says:

      Paul, you must be mistaken because you were Rangers. Not anymore. Your own financial mismanagement by buying the title is the club formally known as Rangers downfall. There is no one to blame but yourselves.

    10. johnny mcginley says:

      Muppet (yes I am name calling)

    11. Yellow Hand says:

      I feel very sorry for all the decent Rangers FC supporters, but reading your comment shows that there is really just one way to teach you some “integrity” and “fair play”:

      “Start on bottom of SFL and gain back some respect and trustworthiness from scottish football fans by working your way back to SPL (fair and square) !!!!

      Say NO to NEWCO in SPL
      Say YES to Integrity
      Apply the rules (every newco/newclub must work their way from scratch). This is not a punishment, this is applying the rules.

    12. rabthecab says:

      Ha ha, almost as funny as Alex’s article. You really are a deluded & bitter man. Face the truth & take your medicine; then and only then might your cheating tax-dodging club find some forgiveness.

    13. sick-of-cream-buns says:

      Perhaps you do care Paul,otherwise you wouldn’t take the time to express your feelings so eloquently.You are the people,’course you are. Now, I suggest that you go lie down in a darkened room,and consider the fact your club now resembles a Norweigan Blue parrot. Oh,and you’re right, no-one likes you, and you certainly won’t be missed. Feelin’ your pain but lovin’ it.

    14. HITCH says:

      well said that man!! at last someone standing up and fighting for our glorious club. enough is enough, the backlash starts here!! the jealousy and hatred toward Rangers is truly disturbing and is getting WAY out of control now. wonder what all of these incredibly pious and morally outraged people feel about matters that are REALLY important, like being shafted by the bankers, constantly lied to by politicians, or perhaps allowing religious nutters to kill innocent people and continually rape and molest our children. do these people see NOTHING outwith Glasgow. there is a real world out there where 99.99% of people could not give a damn about the finances of a football club. generations of being second best really have taken their toll.

    15. Deansy says:

      Paul – Superb impersonation of one of their supporters, so accurate, so life-like – one could almost imagine hearing the knuckles scraping across the keyboard – I applaud you !

    16. HMFC Scottish Cup Winners 2012 says:

      Looks like you care, Trumpet :-)

    17. Percy Vere says:

      Haha! Spot on parody of a blinkered, bigoted Rangers fan. It was a parody, n’est-ce pas?

    18. John O'Hagan says:

      It’s idiots like you that have brought your team to where they are. The arrogance and lack of contrition from everyone at your liquidated club is beyond belief. Your ex team has cheated the SPL and the British taxpayer for many years and you don’t see anything wrong with that, shame on you and everyone associated with your ex club.
      This is just the beginning, Smith, Murray, Ogilvie etc will all be investigated etc.

    19. Philip says:

      That ust about says it all!

    20. M_A_R_S says:

      There’s a Buddhist retreat in Eskdalemuir where you could find some inner peace – now that you will have weekends free.

    21. Iain MacGA says:

      You must be on drugs. By the way Rangers are dead, did nobody tell you?

    22. jaygee says:

      You are on another planet, pal. Deranged!

      “European Stage graced for 60 years”. Aye – ask the good people of Barcelona, Manchester etc etc. Well graced, then places, eh??
      And “Murray and Whyte transgressions” – methinks they may well have to apologise in front of a High Court Judge before this is all done!

      You are the type of arrogant blue-nosed ar*e that has led the “great unwashed” to want to wash – aye wash their hands of you and your ilk!

      Goodbye then – you will certainly not be missed!

    23. Ally says:

      Rangers no longer exist, they no longer exist, they are gone, get used to it. Whatever team you hope to support in the future it will NOT be called Rangers. By return you must mean the rabble rousing troublemakers we all associate with the ex-Glasgow Rangers support i.e. the knuckledraggers. Face up to reality, you need to find a more positive hobby now.

    24. the_Torch says:

      wahahahahaha.
      Sevco5088 – showing us all since 2012 why they don’t deserve SPL status.

    25. Weavers19 says:

      You are the reason why your now defunct “team” are disliked all over the country. Too full of your pitiful self importance and absolutely no sign of contrition.you cheated your way to trophies for years and you have now been caught and don’t like it
      You now decide to spill your bile out to anyone who objects to your cheating,and your bigoted fans are now been seen for what they really are.
      You are what is wrong with football in this country,and you will not be missed.GOODBYE AND GOOD NIGHT!

    26. Weavers19 says:

      Oh and bye the way,super (cheating) rangers are DEAD

    27. Ricardo says:

      What a pile of conceited tosh! If anyone wants to know why the SPL and indeed Scottish Football needs reform they just need to read your post!

    28. gorillaintheroom says:

      Paul McGeachin…..where to start???

      You little rant is full of so many inconsistencies and untruths it amuses me no end and i could be here all day taking it apart. Best to leave it here as a shining example of a rangers mindset. However your lack of contrition and overwhelming delusions of grandeur are both striking and cut to the core of why your ostrich in the sand stance has led to your club being in a liquidation process…..although I bet you are also in denial about that and cling on to the fanciful idea that newco can start afresh with the old assets, ditch the old debt but somehow have the history transferred and it’s somehow the same club. As one keen observer has called it “Trigger’s Broom FC”

      “The silly cheat allegations” Ok, without being drawn on semantics here…..your club by way of not paying taxes like the rest of the clubs drew an unfair advantage like it or not. HMRC certainly seeem to think it. Not registering players correctly….unfortunately that’s not allowed by governing bodies either. But hey-ho….call it what you like.

      You took the trophies so why not now take the punishment? Say “sorry”, go to division 3, have a nice wee adventure (you’ll be guaranteed two visits to Hampden next season when you play Queens Park), all this great spending power we hear about can give a wecome boost to each and every team as you zoom through the leagues and visit each club ground in Scotland. The SPL in the meantime can see how the fare in a rangers free zone. Let’s see if Scotland can flourish once more whilst rearing home bred talent within a substainable business plan and not be drawn into crazy spending. 5 world cup/european championships qualified for in a row seems a lifetime away now.

      “It’s sad, so sad
      It’s a sad, sad institution
      And it’s getting more and more absurd
      It’s sad, so sad
      Why can’t we talk it over
      Oh it seems to me
      That sorry seems to be the hardest word”

    29. Livibroon says:

      Mr McGeachin

      I hope that this is dripping with irony rather than as consumed by the hatred and arrogance that it seems.

      If this is a true reflection of what Scottish football is about to lose as a representation in European football, then it is time to get the bunting out.

      At what point will you remember football is a game and not a platform for hatred. I sincerely hope that if this is a true reflection of the nature of the new club’s support, then your ‘message’ is put forward by Mr Green to let the SFL know what we are voting for. We have lived without your team’s money so far and will survive without it or the baggage attached.

      In the meantime, try to stay indoors.

    30. gerryt says:

      I assume that’s a wind up. Quite funny.

    31. MARIE POLLAK says:

      HA HA this is why you’re in this position the sheer arrogance and inability to say sorry PATHETIC !!!

    32. Craig Whyte's Liquid Eyes says:

      Well done mate, in a single, (although somewhat compressed and badly formed), paragraph, you have managed to encapsulate everything that is detested about the club formerly known as Rangers and their triumphalist support.

      It’s almost excruciating to watch the fading beast lash out at its ‘enemies’ in its final death throes whilst the strain of these lashes cause the ruptutr of yet another internal organ. Well, I say ‘almost excruciating;, although what I really should have said is somewhat satisfying, succinctly gratifying, and downright hilarious….!

  17. davythelotion says:

    I wonder why the SUN ommitted Vlad’s comments about Mr Murdoch in today’s report? Possibly Mr M’s lamb is still succulent?

  18. Seamus Gibbon says:

    Great article Alex. Laughed my head off at the Aberdeen supporter’s advice! NEVER NEVER NEVER! This is such game changing moment in oh so many ways and it is now time for our friends in the SPL and SFA to do the right thing. Newco cannot have entry or fans will be raging at a fix. Scottish football has been slowly destroyed over the last few decades by this corrupt behemoth and fan frustration at this has reached boiling point. Newco in the SPL would be a betrayal and a house divided against itself cannot stand.

    Vote No.

  19. aussie1 says:

    Befitting of “D-Day” 4th July 2012 (American Independence Day), it can go either way?

    1.“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” (Martin Luther King, Jr)

    or

    2. “The secret of life is honesty and fair dealing. If you can fake that, you’ve got it made.” (Groucho Marx 1890 – 1977)

    I guess we shall just have to wait and see what “guides” those men around the table on the 4th July 2012 when they are casting the vote….

  20. row z says:

    Alex

    A timely reminder that football is the fans, not the chairmen and not skysports.

    4 weeks ago it looked like sevco would easily achieve the votes required to enter SPL direct because chairmen were voting ££ first fans second.

    As a Celtic supporter I want to salute the fans of all the other clubs in the SPL. It is you, every one of you and you alone, who refused to renew season books, that have changed the minds and voting intentions of the chairmen.

    It is you, the fans of the smaller clubs that have protected and secured integrity in Scottish Football. Your collective actions, statements and solidarity appear to have won the day.

    As a Celtic fan it is clear to me that we have been caught and exposed as being impotent in this scenario, compromised by the ‘old firm’ tag and a need, at least at club level, to remain on the sidelines.

    I and every other Celtic fan owes you a debt of gratitude for securing the result that we all needed in this farce.

    It has been some years since I have regularly travelled away to watch games but I am now resolved to attend at least one away game at each venue next season in acknowledgement of that debt.

    I know some of your clubs will be severely financially challenged next season but I hope that one of the outcomes is a rising gate for all of you.

    To the notonewco fans of the smaller clubs; take a bow for a job well done.

  21. TJ says:

    Getting to the tickly bit now!

  22. Jimbo says:

    Now there’s been an SPL meeting called for Thursday 28th June to discuss the “implications” of the vote on the 4th July… http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/18556194. I wonder if this is Doncasters’ idea, he’s seemed determined in the past that Sevco/Rangers should be in the SPL.

  23. @edinjag says:

    I’m not impressed by the softening up that seems to be going on in the Glasgow press, along the lines that Rangers could be “demoted” to SFL1 as part of a league reorganisation package.

    I’m even less impressed that it seems to be the Partick Thistle chairman that is leading the charge on this.

    Let’s be absolutely clear on this. If the reborn Rangers are refused admission to the SPL, then the only logical move is for them to apply to the SFL in order to fill a vacancy. Anything else is brass necked opportunism by all concerned.

    Falkirk have today issued an anodyne statement that leaves the door open for such a thing and the succulent lamb mob are piling in, telling us fans of diddy clubs that it would be a great commercial opportunity. Maybe so, but it would be almost as bad as letting new rangers into the SPL. With consensus breaking out on that front, why now are the Scottish press so keen on an SFL1 solution?

    Chancers, all of them.

  24. Sparts says:

    Wow, as always Alex we are grateful for another quality piece of writing. Again you seem to be the only real journo who has managed to grasp how other fans feel. You are quite correct, the level of bias from the Glasgow print and visual media is quite staggering. How these people can possibly get away with this is beyond comprehension. What is just as staggering is that the Rangers (and to some extent Celtic) support fall for this drivel. You mention that Rangers directors and owners have yet to apologise. Well, another staggering observation from me is that the common Rangers fan thinks they have nothing to apologise for. I very much look forward to your next piece of writing.
    PS I notice you didn’t mention the treacherous Kilmarnock who have shamed themselves and Scottish football. How that chairman can look the fans in the face is beyond me. For Killie money is the ONLY driver of any decision. That is not what you call a football club

  25. George Bailey says:

    Sorry to labour the point Alex but falkirk feel strongly about this at all levels.Chairman statement on Newco and they don’t even have a vote on it yet. Would be nice for all SPL chairmen to take a similar standpoint. Link attached if of interest.

    http://www.falkirkfc.co.uk/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=5986&Itemid=320

  26. jerry says:

    “no one likes us, we dont care” As per Mr McGeachins opening line in a previous comment. Have you, Mr McGeachan or any of the other “minority” of the 37,000 or so season ticket holders at the oldco who sang those lines along with all the other vile, sectarian rantings ever actually sat down and had a serious think as to why over 90% of supporters of other clubs dont actually like you,and do not want sevco in the SPL or even the SFL for that matter? Not because of “petty minded jealousy” as you stated but because of the arrogance and the watp attitude which comes across perfectly in your comments.Unfortunately for you and your like we are not in the latter part of the seventeenth century now and society has had enough of this and the “embittered clowns” as you call them want to move out of the dark ages. On another note if a global force in football was in trouble it would not take them long to get a donation of £10 from each of its 15 million fan base to get it out of trouble and secure their future. NO ONE LIKES US …….CORRECT

  27. Hibees says:

    A lot of fans have already Dissapeared over the years due to Scottish football being a shambles, time for change? Yes. Will it happen? It has too for the good of Scottish football. Rangers have cheated, the Scottish media is like a mafia, jim traynor a pundit on the radio claims to be a airdrie fan but goes on all the time about Scottish football needing rangers, people need to open their eyes stop being influenced by rangers and sometimes even celtic, time for change people, say yes and I’m gone and so will be many others.

    Bye bye rangers, you will be joining third Lanark soon in non league football.

  28. GP says:

    The fact that the comment left at 4:16pm could be read as a Ranger’s fans views or a rival fan’s windup sadly says everything there is to say about this situation.

  29. cattybhoy says:

    i honestly believe that the newco will be voted back into the spl But will then be immediately ejected from the spl as punishment for the ebt/ dual contracts shenanigans. that way the spl chairmen dont get their hands dirty.

  30. Daibhidh says:

    Paul McGeachin Rangers are Amen,Buried,Culled , Dead, Ended,Finished ,Gone, History ,Indisposed ,Junked ,Killed ,Lost ,Missing ,Nil ,Over,Past ,Quitted , Rolled ,Sunk ,Toast ,Under ,Vanquished ,Whipped ,X rated ,Yesterday……………Zero

    No newcoclub

  31. Agent One says:

    Hi All

    They don’t really get it .you cant go back into the SPL as you are not Glasgow RANGERS, they are DEAD and the new club is not alive yet,still a long way off, on their open letter to Charles neymoney Green they talk about all the Chairmen and Supporters of other clubs, saying its all about Bigotry ,are they for real ,its not about Bigotry its about what happened to the club they followed,they will never change.

    To Be continued

    Agent one

  32. bighchiefed says:

    Re Paul McGeachin.

    This is either the most brilliant piece of irony I’ve ever read or the most brilliant example of why “No-one Likes Us” about a team whose fans have spewed bigoted bile and pillaged their way across the UK and Europe like a horde of marauding Visigoths – oops I almost said “Huns” there – for decades.
    Either way it now looks as if it will be good riddance to Zombie FC for a wee while and, when if they do eventually crawl back, hopefully they’ll show a wee bit of humility and contrition.

  33. StevieBhoy says:

    For outsiders to Scottish football, read Paul McGeachin’s post. And thats about as near as you are going to get to an ‘enlightened’ and ‘educated’ Rangers supporter. That is as good as it gets for their fanbase. Not much, is it?

  34. Mkb1973 says:

    @Paul McGeachin – did you write that post from a river in Egypt?

  35. che'mor says:

    Paul McGeachin…….hahahaha and that is what you call the superiority complex……..the very one that got yer DEID club into the mess it WAS in…in the first place….cling on to Zombie FC all you like with your cracked figernails-grieving is a sad slow angry process…..hang on in there!……p.s could practically smell the bitterness from your post -hypocrite!!!

  36. WeeAndyBhoy says:

    Paul McGeachin

    You’ve surpassed yourself sir, amazing comments.

    It would be worth a very long winded response to your….ehm points, however one or two points will suffice.

    There will NOT be a rangers fc in future. They are in administration now, they WILL be liquidated. They will be no more.

    Your denial (or couldn’t give a f*** attitude) of past events is not unexpected. I fear there are more just like you. Gallus is an understatement

    You forget, this is not a Celtic issue, it’s a Scottish football issue. Supporters of all clubs around the country have become sick & tired of the mess that has unfolded at rfc(IL). It’s totally embarrassing. If you think the worst is over, think again. This is just the start. There are going to be more revelations & any small amount of respect rfc(IL) have now, will be obliterated once put in the public domain.

    Do what you & your ilk do best, put that heid of yours back in the sand, where it’s obviously been for years.

  37. Shug Keevins says:

    Alex, have you ever encountered a more inept shower of alleged journos in all your travels? Or a more deluded and bitter rabble of rednecks/hicks than the venemous hun? Just curious,like.

  38. Ryan says:

    Paul you state “Celtic’s over-zealous bigoted minority” is this as opposed to the almost defunct Rangers’ over-zealous bigoted majority? Whilst that clubs majority is “up to their knees” in my blood, Celtic’s majority are “singing songs of hope and joy and freedom” its mythical to even compare the two sides as being as bad as each other. This is what the MSM in Scotland would have you believe, even Walter stated there was a “protestant superiority” agenda at that almost defunct club. Peter Lawell doesn’t have to state anything, he’s far too shrewd to be painted as the instigator and cause of the failure of Sevco fc. Carry on, we feel you are doing a grand job in causing the failure on your own.

  39. Archie Bald says:

    Brilliant fun, the article, as well as the comments below it, particularly Paul McGeachin. Defiant and lucid, an entertaining combination.

  40. Peter says:

    To Paul McGeachin 22 June 2012>>>>>>>>Your comments are exactly why clubs and supporters from all over the UK have no sympathy for your dilemma.The words you spout could have come from ‘Adolf Hitler’ or ‘Stalin’, as much for your self-important, arrogant, delusional sense of graduar.For your facts, Aberdeen Football club are much more successful than your historical bigoted and sectarian club will ever be. Those Mickey Mouse stars you have on your shirts represent the equivelent of absolute ZERO. Your club and its supporters have cheated the honest clubs and its supporters for decades and should be punished to the extreme. Your club and its supporters have systematically destroyed Scottish Football. Your club or its supporters will never be forgiven or forgotten. Now you carry on drinking yer whisky and wallowing in yer own self-importance while the rest of us get down to the job of putting down the rabid dog that was once called ‘Glasgow Rangers FC’.

  41. limerick bhoy says:

    MrMcGeachin is one hurtin hun.a bit of humility would,nt go a miss.Try sum pie

  42. Robbie Robertson says:

    This is a very difficult subject, which has produced some very well written articles on both sides. As a Rangers fan myself, I’m aware that Rangers have done wrong (It’s difficult to deny it, when it’s so well published. I wouldn’t try to deny it if it was true anyway though)What annoys me though is the vitriol aimed at the Rangers fans, not the club. There is a mass of implication that the average fan was party to the’Great Scottish Football Swindle’ I get grief about paying taxes. I’ve paid my taxes for 25 years. I’ve never tried to avoid them, and I was unaware that the club I support had done what they did for so long. Part of me says ‘Take the punishment, whatever it is’ Part of me says ‘SFL, Division 3, and work our way up’ It will take a while to build back up. I would expect gates at Ibrox to fall, but even if 25,000 fans turn up every second saturday (And it will be Saturday for all the games, because we won’t be subject to TV time changes)the SFL Div 3 average gate will go through the roof. In the meantime, the SPL gates will fall, significantly. The New Rangers won’t have the money from Europe,reduced gate income, reduced merchandise, but will still have a fan base that exceeds any other club in the SFL. I hear regularly that other clubs are struggling financially. Will this be the final nail? How many times have other SPL clubs relied on the huge influx of Old Firm fans filling their ground, buying their food, drink and programmes?

    While all of this happens, let’s have a look at ALL the other SPL accounts. I find it hard to believe that Rangers were the only club to be involved in these ‘Schemes’. Nobody knew anything about these EBTs until Rangers were highlighted. How can fans of other clubs be so sure that THEIR clubs weren’t involved in the practice? From what I’ve read (And a lot of it is purely checking on the web)A lot of what we are being hammered for wasn’t actually illegal when the club started. So, in the same way that Jimmy Carr is being slammed, the club was taking advantage of loopholes. Whether this is morally wrong or not, adds to the complication.If the letter of the law wasn’t specific enough, Rangers weren’t actually breaking it. Do we now have to look at ALL clubs (In England as well) to check that they are doing everything ‘Morally’
    How long is this going to take?

    I said ealrier that part of me says to drop to the SFL. THe other part of me is screaming though that now the Miscreants are gone, can we start again in the SPL? The New Club would have the stadium, the fans, the name and the ability to hold it’s own. MOre importantly though, the real criminals here would be gone. No Bain, No Murray, No Whyte, no other hangers on.
    Yes the club should be punished, but I believe that dropping the new club to the third would be counter productive.

    At the end of the day though, the club is at the mercy of others. Let the chairmen of the other clubs make their decision. Either way, I’m Rangers Til I Die. If it’s the Third next year, so be it. I don’t get up as often as I like, but will still be proud to get into Ibrox to support MY team.
    The number of ‘Like’ and ‘Dislike’ markers on each comment on this stream gives a painfully obvious indication that this comment will be unpopular. I ask myself regularly what I would want if it was another club (or more specifically THAT other club) in our situation. ANd the hoset answer is that I’m not sure. Old Firm is special. I know enough fans of other SPL teams who for these special games will come and watch, and will be most definitely biased towards one team or the other. Do you really want it to end? Let’s see what happens on the 4th of July…..

    1. Craig Whyte's Liquid Eyes says:

      Pretty valid points mate, and well made, it’s refreshing to see an acceptance of guilt on behalf of the club from a Rangers fan.

      The one point I would make to counter though, is why should ANY new club be given automatic entry into the top flight of any national league / sport? There may be a stadium, and nice training facilities, but there are no accounts, and to date no players. There are honest, hard-working clubs like Spartans and Gala Fairydean patiently waiting for their chance to join the professional ranks having kept their house in order, and yet these well-run smaller clubs are simply to be overlooked in order for ‘Rangers’ to take their rightful place at the top table of Scottish football, why the hell should they forego their chance just so the zombie establishment club have something to do of a weekend??

    2. John C F says:

      Robbie
      You miss the point – EBTs were legal. But the key letter in them is the ‘T’, it stands for trust and it is clear from the 30+ player who had side letters i.e. second contracts, that there was little or no trust between the club and its players. Had they taken their money on trust, it could probably be argued that the club did nothing wrong. However…!!!???
      As far as punishments go, Rangers (IA/IL) have not yet been punished for anything. Neither of the fines imposed by the SFA/SPL have been paid and the transfer ban has, for now, been thrown out. The fact the club decided to take the SFA to a civil court was of their own doing so any fallout will be a consequence. Similarly, going into adminsitration was a consequence of not paying HMRC’s PAYE and NIC contributions. And going into liquidation was a consequence of not being able to fulfil the requirements of a CVA. So as yet RFC(IA/IL) remain unpunished but I’m sure it’s coming…even in SFL3

  43. Anychanceofaliftovermister. says:

    Well I’m from Edinburgh and support the Hibees.
    This is just the tip of the iceberg.
    What about the price of watching football these days with most of it going into the player’s pockets.The monopoly and success of Celtic and Rangers and to some extent Hearts is simply down to the money they spend to get the best players.Most of these players having no local affiliation at all.I’m so scunnered with Glasgow domination that I’d even go for an Edinburgh United just to level the playing field a bit.
    Yes,boot Rangers out but what about Mr squeaky clean Romanov? Football is now simply a business.
    Clubs should not be allowed to go into debt and gain success by doing so.Put all the players in the SPL on the average national wage,bring ticket prices way down,only allow players who have a real local connection to play for teams,stop the transfer market completely.Stuff the domination of the TV companies.Bring back a real sense of community to football as it was in the old days.
    Watch the crowds flock back to watch the games.I respect those loyal fans of the lower league clubs that turn out on Saturdays in Brechin,Montrose,Arbroath…They are the real winners and always have been because they have a real sense of community and loyalty.Silver ware and mega bucks not necessary.I reckon the national team would benefit too.We’ve plenty Ronaldos and Messies in Scotland! Just some thoughts.

  44. John F says:

    The comments from Paul McGeachin is just one reason why this corrupt, arrogant and bigoted institution should not only be banished to the lower leagues but banished from football and society all together !

  45. Sparts says:

    Let me help you out here. You are correct, EBT’s do not appear to be illegal. However, the tax man does think he has a case to argue and so we’ll find out in due course. At the very least, morally speaking Rangers have paid their players and those players have paid not tax on that part of their salary – effectively swindling you and I (as tax payers ourselves). It gets worse. Player renumeration is supposed to be declared to the SPL/SFA so that a level playing field can be ensured. If Rangers decide to offer their players tax free salary they are effectively paying 40% more than any other club could afford. Because of this each player that they fielded being paid in this way was illegiable to play for Rangers. Think of how powerful a club could be being able to out manouvre their peers by a massive 40%. Enough to buy leagues, European places, cups….??? Most certainly.
    So, they’ve potentially broken the law, they’ve certainly broken, SFA, SPL, UEFA and FIFA rules and some would go as far as to call them cheats. You’re right of course, Rangers must take their medicine. That had better include having to apply to join the SFL Lg 3. Anything else is not acceptable. I don’t want to see a Rangers side even having a sniff of a trophy anytime in the next 5 years.

    As for needing Rangers in the SPL, please quite with this tripe. Perhaps stop reading the Glasgow press? Rangers fans and Glasgow based media are the only people that think this is true. 11 SPL chairmen do not agree and neither do 95% of fans at other clubs The loss shall be insignificant and the game shall be cleaner. Old firm games? Who cares outside of Glasgow? Nobody else in Scotland is interested in these revolting little derbies. I honestly haven’t watched one in 10 years as I cannot bare to listen to the bigotry and sectarian chanting back and forth. It’s nothing but a circus show that the rest of the football world watches with an equal sense of bemusement and disgust. Good rid.

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