7 Jul 2012

Rangers: the vote that never was?

A senior Football League source has just leaked this to me. Note second section which appears to be a clear attempt to by-pass any vote and shoehorn Rangers Newco into Div 1. Incredible.

You have been warned:

Subject: SFL Special General Meeting – Friday, 13th July, 2012
   
Dear Sir or Madam,
 
NOTICE OF SPECIAL GENERAL MEETING – SCOTTISH FOOTBALL LEAGUE 

Notice is hereby given that a Special General Meeting of The Scottish Football League will be held within the Bell/Baird Suite on the fifth floor of Hampden Park, Glasgow on Friday, 13th July, 2012 at 11.00 a.m. for the purpose of considering and, if thought fit, approving the following proposals:-

(i) That the Scottish Football League Members agree to admit Sevco Scotland Limited as an Associate Member and agrees to permit Rangers F.C. to play in the League during Season 2012/13.

(ii) That the Scottish Football League Members direct the Board of Management of The Scottish Football League (the “Board”) to provide that Rangers F.C. shall play in the Third Division of the Scottish Football League during Season 2012/13 unless the Board shall have to its satisfaction negotiated and reached agreement with The Scottish Premier League and The Scottish Football Association on a series of measures which the Board shall consider to be in the best interests of the game, how it is structured, how it is governed and how it is financed, whereupon the Board shall be authorised to provide that Rangers F.C. shall play in the First Division of the Scottish Football League during Season 2012/13.

(iii) That the Scottish Football League Members in terms of Rule 12 approve the resignation of either Dundee F.C. or Dunfermline Athletic F.C., whichever shall be admitted to join the Scottish Premier League for Season 2012/13, such resignation to take effect as at the date of admission of such club to the Scottish Premier League, notwithstanding that the requisite notice under Rule 12 shall not have been given.Details of the series of measures referred to at (ii) above shall be made available to the Members in advance of the meeting and an opportunity for full discussion of those measures will be given prior to the proposals being put to the meeting.

In accordance with the terms of SFL Rule 53, your club must send one representative to this meeting and I would be most grateful if you could advise me of the name of your representative by return.

A buffet lunch will be served at the conclusion of the meeting.

Kind regards,
David A. Longmuir
Chief Executive, SFL.

Tweets by @alextomo

72 reader comments

  1. mickm25 says:

    Alex, is there any way that you can find out if UEFA or FIFA are aware of this? Goes against all ‘sporting integrity’. Also Jim Ballantyne is on SFL board and we all know what his view will be!

  2. marshall83 says:

    brilliant, the sfl will do the dirty work for the spl, when will this end?

  3. Mickey says:

    Surely they risk Sevco not being voted into the S.F.L at all ?

  4. Burnsy says:

    The game in Scotland is dead. Ruined by self serving incompetents at the behest of the ‘Establishment’, and with no thought to the fans who wish to simply see the rules “applied without fear or fervour”.

    STILL the SMSM link the future of NewCo and Scottish as one and the same when they are not…

    Under current criteria set out by the SFA, NewCo CANNOT and DO NOT qualify for membership and therefore the SFA CANNOT grant them license. Regan and Doncaster tried to shoehorn NewCo into the SPL, as admittance by the other 11 clubs would automatically grant them and SFA membership, that plan failed…

    Now we have Longmuir/Regan attempting to take the vote away from the SFL member clubs in case the ‘No’ vote prohibits the SFA from granting NewCo any membership at all. Mark my words, Doncaster will be gone from Hampden as soon as reasonably possible, with his position being untenable, and I’m betting any money that if Longmuir manages to get NewCo into Div 1, he will be handsomely rewarded for his devious methods…

    Every single member club in the SPL/SFL need to stand together NOW and get Regan, Doncaster and Longmuir out… and let’s not forget about Wee Campbell sitting all quietly on the outside, but no doubt getting involved at every opportunity on the inside. Once we have them out, we simply need to apply the rules to NewCo as they would ANY OTHER club wishing to join the SFA… and then renegotiate the TV deals that this existing ‘mob’ sold us down the river to finalise…

    We are standing by the side of the road watching the inevitable car crash, and doing nothing to prevent it

  5. MickDeee says:

    Unbelievable, in my mind it leaves the chairmen with no choice but to refuse Rangers entry at any level! If that happens this will just drag on even longer.

  6. Sandy, Paisley says:

    Then there’s only one thing for it. The clubs msut vote against the first resolution and say “no” to Secvo at any level of the SFL.

    1. jazbeer says:

      Why? We want to prosper and bring on young players with better facilities. Why take out a club which takes out a third of Scottish football’s revenue?
      The SFL will vote Yes to Rangers getting into the First Division for it is in their financial interest to do so. And the chairman of the club I support (the fans voted yes at the weekend) will be putting his case forward very strongly, for he is on the eight-person board of the SFl. They will make a decision where the SFA and the SPL shirked out of it

  7. Gordon says:

    Leaked!!!!!! It was read out on BBC Radio Scotland 3 HOURS ago as it had been sent to all league clubs

  8. joe macdougall says:

    This is disgraceful I hope the SFL clubs react and
    demand a vote. Scottish football has plumbed new
    depths during this Rangers affair, the fans of
    SFL clubs deserve better

  9. Patrick R Wight says:

    UEFA should be given the facts that Scottish football is corrupt, they are bending over backwards to accommodate Rangers. They should be kicked out of football so the game here can move forward and flourish. I have followed the game since the 60s and have always known about the double dealing between the SFA and Rangers. Now the cat is out of the bag!
    Aberdeen forever!

  10. Colin caraher says:

    Surely they wouldn’t have the brass neck to dispense with democracy and employ this fascist coup. All hell would break loose if they did this. Can’t see it happening, maybe am being naive though?

  11. Des Dougan says:

    Watching this from 8000 miles away, it is clear that the executive leadership of the SFA, the SPL and now the SFL have decided to turf due process (and their own rules) out of the window.

    Given that BDO has not yet begun its work, nor HMRC published the findings of the FTT, both of which could have significant impact on the transfer of assets to Sevco (whichever one currently owns them), this mad rush to draw Rangers’ successor club into the league at any level does the reputation of said leadership, nor of Scottish football, no favours whatsoever.

    Sevco clearly does not have 3 years of accounts, which is apparently required prior to league admission, and the entire admission process has been subverted, given that there may be other clubs desiring of a place in the SFL.

    Surely it is time for Messrs. Regan and Doncaster, and perhaps Mr Longmuir, to either resign or be terminated for cause by their respective Boards. Their positions in this fiasco are clearly untenable – fans all over Scotland, and not just of any one club, are clearly united in the view that sporting integrity is paramount, otherwise we have no sport.

    Trying to ensure the successor to Rangers is in the SPL for season 2013 – 2014 clearly breaches any thought of the integrity of the sport. One hopes the SFL chairmen have the integrity and fortitude displayed by Mr Hutton of Raith Rovers.

  12. Paul says:

    The buffet lunch, surely not lamb?

  13. irishbhoy72 says:

    Have they removed the rule stating ALL clubs applying for SFL membership MUST supply 3 years completed accounts. This is an outright disgrace proving SPL/SFA/SFL are only interested in themselves as individuals and how they can keep Defunct FC money rolling in for themselves. Rangers were corrupt so were/are the Scottish Football authorities

    1. jazbeer says:

      You wouldn’t by chance happen to be a Celtic supporter who wants to see his arch-rivals shafted by any chance. For ‘sporting integrity’ see – I hate Rangers.
      The new Rangers going into the 3rd Div would have serious implications for every club in Scotland. £18.2 million would go out of the game this season alone and every football fn in the country has to ask himself – would my club be affected?

      1. Bruce says:

        You spend too much time reading The Record and The Sun.

  14. Paul N says:

    Is there no low these cretins will sink to ?
    All Scottish football fans want the honest and correct outcome. Sevco into Div 3 at most. Even sevco fans want this.

  15. Len McCoy says:

    In the best interests of the game is sporting integrity. The same sporting integrity which saw Livingston sent to the 3rd division. No amount of short term financial gain is worth the corruption associated with allowing a club which dodged out of £134,000,000 of debt to the public purse, countless small businesses and other football clubs across Europe, to potentially regain entry to the SPL within 1 season.

    It is outrageous to perpetuate the myth that Scottish football is doomed without this poisoned institution. Scottish football will survive fine without Rangers. But of course this issue isn’t about saving Scottish football at all, its about saving Rangers FC.

    Send them to the 3rd division and stop this appalling charade now !

    1. James baird says:

      Nonsense – it is A fact each spl club will lose circa 1 mill if rangers aren’t in div 1 – but hey why should we care we the hypocrites to go to the wall we want div 3 – by the way why don’t u get in touch with Joey whimster and help him raise funds for roary rover

  16. Larrybhoy says:

    Alex,

    If this attempted, then I have seen posts on other blogs related to Uefa’s stance on this matter, and that they simply will not allow it. They haven’t acted yet, but normally wait until a decision of this nature is taken, then step in and advise that a newco needs to start at the bottom of the heap.

    At least, I trust that is what they will do

    Yours in Hope

  17. Davros says:

    July 12 or Friday the 13th.
    Two dates almost equally relevant to the most dubious club in Scottish footballing history.

    At best they deserve Div.3 and the appropriate years in the wilderness, but their malign influence appears to be everywhere….

  18. cmh64 says:

    Presumably if they consider and think them not fit, then the SFL member clubs can reject the proposals. Though what that does to Dundee or Dunfermline isn’t clear.

    Interesting to see that the SFL have considered the rules enough to force the meeting, but not regarding the proposals being submitted.

    I hope UEFA and FIFA are watching closely.

  19. Stuart says:

    Hopefully at least one of the SFL delegates will take advantage of this meeting to ask how the following issues comply with SFL rules.

    1) Under which regulation can the SFL bypass the usual procedure of inviting applications to fill a vacancy and electing the successful applicant by ballot?
    2) Under which regulation can the SFL “agree to admit” a company as an Associate Member and “agree to permit” a club that cannot provide audited accounts for the previous three years to play in the SFL?

    Having said that, if the price of Sevco Rangers playing in the First Division is that the SFA & SPL agree to the SFL Board’s conditions, then the ball is in the SFL’s court. As long as the clubs demand that these conditions are what the clubs require rather than what the SFL bureaucrats try to fob them off with then it might just be worth it.

  20. majeebix says:

    Someone save us from this lunacy please. totally wrong.

  21. JJ1983 says:

    And what happens if, say, they finish fifth in Division One next season? The SPL has already made it clear – through Neil Doncaster – that they cannot afford to have “Rangers” outside its league for more than one season, so what happens if they don’t gain promotion through traditional means? It has already been shown through this episode that the rules mean nothing….

  22. MacShimidh says:

    A buffet lunch will be served at the conclusion of the meeting.

    Lamb Kebabs?

    Or bread and wine, as is traditional?

  23. mick curran says:

    The ‘establishment’ appear to have found a way of placing a football club which will soon be defunct into their league Div 1. How?
    This cannot be possible.Audited accounts,anybody?
    This club is about to be liquidated,like Gretna, Third Lanark etc. Gone,history as they say.
    There should be no repreive for the second best supported club in Scotland.

  24. sc says:

    It cannot be allowed to fly. Attempted stitch up of the lowest kind

  25. Johnny Gee says:

    Surely the proposals fall at the first hurdle as THERE IS NO RANGERS F.C.

    Or am I missing something here???…

    1. Bruce says:

      No, you’re not.

  26. petescully says:

    let”s say ,No Vote, Rangers in Division 1
    Rangers Being Shown Favor
    Flaunting The Rule”s By The SPL, SFA.
    Anybody That Dont Agree, Threatened
    and Pressured.= Rangers in Division 1.
    Next To Be Straitened Out
    REFF”S and LINE”S MEN.
    No Problem. They Have Had Plenty Practice
    140 Years

  27. MaldonCelt says:

    I would have said this is unbelievable, but unfortunately it isn’t. This is exactly what you would expect the Scottish Football authorities to attempt – find a way to shoehorn “Rangers” newco into SFL1 and avoid the inconvenience of a proper vote by the SFL teams. After all, they can’t guarantee they’ll get their own way by letting other people decide what’s right.
    It this happens, UEFA MUST intervene. The Fiorentina precedent should ensure UEFA put a stop to this blatant gerrymandering, and force the SFA, SFL “leaders” to stop this blatant favouratism and DO WHAT THE EXISTING RULEBOOK SAYS.

  28. Dhougal says:

    You cannot be serious Alex ? Tongue in cheek i hope ? …….im a wee bit skeewiffed ….well its Saturday in Glasgow wot else ?

  29. Mensi says:

    A bit late with this seeing as everyone knows now anyway. Maybe thats why other journalists threaten you, for nicking their stories?

  30. MAC says:

    Hi Alex,
    This reads like an extract from an Orwellian fantasy – the sort of thing you’d expect from a dictatorship from the third world. The Scottish Football authorities are deaf to their customers and their members – the shameless way they are bulldozing Sevco Rangers into Div 1 is appalling and an affront to all Scottish Football Supporters. Where else in the world would a professional body be allowed to operate such a tyrannical approach? Next week Parliament committee is to hold an inquiry into the state of Scottish football – Ogilvie, Regan and Doncaster be afraid, be very afraid – your days are numbered – you will soon no longer be able to continue your destruction of Scottish football.
    My partner and I are delaying our decision to buy a season ticket until we hear what league Sevco will play – simply put if they fix the vote and Sevco are place in the first division we will not be buying our season tickets or attending any home/away games and will cancel our Sky/ESPN subscription in protest. I can assure you that we’re not the only ones in Scotland that feel this way.
    I was listening to you on Radio Scotland today – very good and we appreciate your efforts keeping this issue on the Radar. Unfortunately I listened on to the next programme. The next Programme was bullied by the Main Stream Media Mogul James Traynor the Rangers & SFA Public Relations Officer. I can’t believe that our TV licence money is wasted on this type of biased programming. I was absolutely shocked about what he said about Turnbull Hutton from Raith Rovers – unchallenged. This whole programme was a party political broadcast on behalf of the SFA – a flood of half truths and propaganda. I lasted 20 minutes and switched off and vowed to never to listen or read anything from that man ever again. He epitomises everything that is wrong with the main stream media in Scotland – the press in Scotland will be a better place the day he is no longer there – HANG YOUR HEAD IN SHAME JAMES TRAYNOR.

    UEFA and FIFA you are our United Nations please intervene and save our Sport from these despots.

    Fellow Scottish Football Fans make your voice heard –NO to NEWCO in the FIRST !!!

  31. skidowski says:

    Simply scandalous. Surely UEFA must step ib?

  32. Jim Wood says:

    This is the sort of thing we have had to put up with for years. The only option now for the SFL clubs is to vote against The Rangers FC joining the league or voting to accept but give up power to the board and management of the SFL to do as they see fit.
    Do you think CFC fans are paranoid now.
    Shame that the SFL clubs have been forced to have no choice but take it or leave it and get it anyway.
    Anything that helps The Rangers FC back to the top league.

  33. Mac The Spoon says:

    Well that is it then. No matter how the SFL clubs vote the NEWCO will be playing in Div.1 We now need every supporters association to get active on this immediately. The fans of all clubs must stand together and send a clear message (to the SFA, the SPL and the “Board” of the SFL)atating we refuse to accept their gerrymandering on behalf of Charles Green. This is still a democracy.

  34. S Smyth says:

    Welcome to Scottish football Alex
    Looks like next season will be my last after 30 years.
    Sport without honour will produce winners without honour and fans with hollow glories .

  35. Torbay bhoy says:

    you couldnt make it up, a right stitch up

  36. Charles O'Brien says:

    So,they want a new club with no accounts,to just take over the the second hand pre-used what was the property of the old now defunct Glasgow Rangers?
    This is a new club no matter how they twist it what are they afraid of ,the league surving and thriving without “Rangers” and prove that those folk are not needed,or is this another type of loyal folk helping their own?
    It stinks.I would not let them in for 3 years,and then only to Division 3.

    1. Marty says:

      Rangers the club aren’t defunct. Only a company is (or about to be, to be strictly accurate). The club was there before the company and it will be there after it too.

      Anyway, accounts aren’t a condition of entry to the SFL. Nor is it laid down anywhere that a club joining the SFL must join in the Third Division.

      This is not some evil pro-Rangers conspiracy but the football authorities panicking about finances.

      1. Bruce says:

        As has been well established, Marty, that is a lie. Club become the company. Now it’s being liquidated. Why do you persist with your patent fantasies?

  37. Edgecrusher says:

    From another blog. Short memories and double standards…

    Tom Says:
    July 7th, 2012 at 6:07 pm

    Maybe SFL members should be reminded of a statement made by Ballantyne;

    Airdrie United chairman Jim Ballantyne insists Livingston only have themselves to blame after the Scottish Football League relegated them to the Irn-Bru Third Division.

    The future of the West Lothian club is back in doubt after the SFL opted to punish them yesterday for breaching the league’s insolvency rules.

    The decision to strip Livi of their First Division status saw them replaced by Airdrie, who have now avoided the drop for the second straight season following Gretna’s demise last year.

    Ballantyne said in the Daily Record: “If you ask me if I feel guilty about what has happened to Livingston then the answer is no.

    “They have not played within the rules and that is unfair on all the other clubs who have not overspent and have lived within their means.

    “I am very happy with the decision of the SFL to uphold the integrity of the league”.

  38. Dutchmul says:

    Hi Alex

    Heard you on off the ball, keep up the great work.

    This SFL proposal is completely despicable and must involve collusion with the SPL & SFA.

    I am now at the point where I am done with Scottish Football. Its corrupt and fixed.

    I will NEVER spend a single penny on Scottish football(at any level including the national team) ever again. My sky sports will be cancelled.

    Btw, have a look at this blog, http://cybertims.net/Shaunyblog/
    perhaps another plan is being hatched as backup?

    Keep up the great work.
    Thanks

  39. MacShimidh says:

    stitch-up was arranged at meeting on 20th June:

    The SFL board held an emergency two-hour meeting at Alloa yesterday morning,and reached a broad agreement on the principle of accepting newco Rangers into the second tier of the game.

    But in return, they want guarantees going forward on voting rights, fairer financial distribution and easier access to the top flight for First Division clubs, most likely via a play-off system.

    And to appease Sky TV chiefs it is understood the Glasgow Cup could be revived to ensure there will still be Old Firm clashes.

    SFL chief executive David Longmuir was tight-lipped as he left Recreation Park yesterday lunchtime after talks with Ewen Cameron (Alloa), Kenny Ferguson (Brechin), Gilbert Lawrie (Dumbarton), Anne McKeown (Arbroath) and Jim Leishman (Dunfermline).
    http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/football/sfl/2012/06/21/rangers-in-crisis-sfl-clubs-ready-to-accept-ibrox-men-in-first-division-in-return-for-league-revamp-86908-23898830/

  40. Mark Brogan says:

    This is a scandal. This has all the hall marks of a classic stitch up. The SFL clubs need to stand up to this.

    The SPL voted them out, they now need to live with the results of this, and if its Div 3 then so be it, and the SPL need to cut their cloth accordingly

  41. Disgruntled says:

    A complete carve up. ANY other club with no exception would be straight back to div 3. There is NOTHING else to say

  42. blogiston says:

    If only Cameron could get David Longmuir to write the 2014 Independence referendum question, the continuation of the union would be assured.
    [And a buffet lunch of succulent lamb will be served at the conclusion of the meeting – wink, wink.]

  43. Colombian Boffin says:

    What does this say about those charged with running our National game?

    This situation is almost intolerable for me, and I cannot see how my conscience will allow me to go and watch my club next season.

  44. Joe Murray says:

    I think it is long overdue time that all Scottish football fans put their money where their mouth is. It is time for all to decide what the “best interests” of the Scottish Game actually are – the wishes of all those who pay good money every season or the wishes of a few self-serving businessmen and their acolytes (as appears to be the case at the moment).
    Unless all fans of the Scottish game protest this grotesque attempt to shoehorn Rangers back into the upper leagues with minimum penalties they will, by default, shroud themselves in Rangers’ shame, while the fans of the former Rangers F.C. who, obviously, have no sense of it will never see the irony.
    I cannot believe these men who run the SPL, SFL and SFA can remain in their positions which must now be untenable. Unless, of course, the management of all the other clubs are happy for them to do the dirty work – are we witnessing a lot of hand washing going on here?
    Scottish football has become a laughing stock. Are we to prove to the world that, beyond doubt, we are the stupidest people on the planet for allowing our game to be loaded for ever more in favour of one club?
    Why bother even turning up on a Saturday?

  45. MSM says:

    A buffet lunch will be served at the conclusion of the meeting_____I wonder if that will be succulent lamb in keeping with their old traditions also most apt as they are slaughtering Scottish Football as a sport, an organisation and of any integrity sad to see money and the masonic handshake are still the greater beneficiary then dignity, fair play and governance.

  46. JOM says:

    Alex, this sorry mess that is Scottish football, just gets just get more and more embarrassing for all of us who still consider football to be a beautiful game. Until recently we were able to believe that there were enough decent people involved in the governance of our game to ensure that if something seemed unfair that it was an oversight rather than an intention. Now those very people who have lectured us about “Sporting Integrity” seek to subvert the will of the chairmen and the fans of Scottish football clubs for the sake of some immoral financial expediency. They are even rigging the result that they deem appropriate. It is akin to some undemocratic dictator and associated cronies rigging an election where the peoples’ will counts for nothing. At least in this latter case we have the UN and international courts to exert some pressure on such power hungry tyrants. Is there no greater power to force governing bodies such as th SFA, SPL and SFL to act as the paying public and their clubs wish them to. I am well aware that UEFA and FIFA may well share the same lack of respect for those who actually fund the game given your own experience in getting any response from them. I am not a Rangers fan but I believe that Newco Rangers should be admitted to SFL3 without any sanction as is the overwhelming will of their fans and all other club fans. Any punitive sanctions should be taken against what remains of RFC 2012 Plc and those who destroyed it.

  47. Project Walliams says:

    Providing the SFL clubs refuse to allow Sevco into the Scottish football league (I) – then item (ii) becomes irrelevant. That would be the smart move if the SFA clubs want real change to happen. Friday 13th will be The Day of the Diddies!

  48. SteveJM says:

    On the ball again Alex. Cannot commend enough your journalism on this story which should be a writer’s goldmine. So much intrigue and dirty dealing to expose. For some reason Scottish journalism, if a couple of exceptions, has chosen to toe the party line and ignore the biggest sports and business story in Scotland in decades. There are many strands notably the Murray International Metals and banking ones which have yet to be fully explored. Well done again.

  49. Martin says:

    Could this backfire on the gerrymanderers. As it is obvious Regan, Doncaster and Longmuir will gerymander Sevco Scotland into SFL1 will all the members vote no on item ii thus ending any prospect of Sevco fielding a team in senior Scottish football in the 12/13 season

  50. MG says:

    1) Surely now the SFL clubs will simply vote “No” to proposal (ii). If that is not an option, then they will vote “No” to proposal (i).

    2) The Appellate Tribunal could be reconvened at any time and possibly very soon. The SFA will have to suspend Rangers FC in any case, given their idiocy in not accepting the ban.

    3) The liquidators will be appointed soon and a major investigation into the apparently illegal sale of Rangers FC PLC assets to Sevco Scotland will commence. £5.5m for assets on the books at over £100m, sold by administrators who do not have the power or responsibility to make the sale after the fact liquidators have been called in?

    As McCoist has already explained. He would buy a season ticket if he were a fan “in a heartbeat”, but that is a hypothetical. He also gave several reasons advising fans against buying tickets, including:
    No Team
    No Division
    No Trust in Sevco Mgt

    Surely admitting this club to Scottish football is a major error until such time as they have sorted out this mess. I wish them the best of luck (even as a Celtic fan), though I am still shocked at the often siege mentality and “we area peepul” attitude of the RFC fans. At what point are they going to realise they have been totally betrayed by their own club, which is now defunct, and direct their anger towards the custodians of Oldco RFC.??

  51. Dade says:

    Have you ever heard of a sport that is so reliant upon one or two teams that the governing body would do almost anything to keep these teams within the top league. This is, regardless of any laws or regulations broken by that team in the past and against the wishes of the majority of it’s members and fans? Welcome to the SPL.

    Deals have apparently been signed that allow investors to pull out in the event that either of these 2 teams no longer exist in the SPL. This decision alone has risked the integrity of our sport as the SPL have now found themselves in a position whereby they must bend the rules in order to appease all investors by aiming to get Rangers back in to Scotland’s top division as quickly as possible in a position to compete with Celtic.

    If Rangers were to go to division 3 then that would be fine and not much different from the route everyone else in their position would have to go. Rangers fans would not have the stigma attached of having preferential treatment by the SPL/SFA and the rest of Scotland can move on, knowing that the sports still questionable integrity has remained largely intact. We can then come together as a footballing nation and think long and hard about the changes we need to make to our competition that will encourage more fans to attend matches and make our leagues more competitive.

    HOWEVER should Rangers steal a place in division 1 then all hopes of this are quashed. It will be evident to even the dimmest of people that the SFA and SPL will be rooting for Rangers to win the first division and gain entry back to the SPL within one season to try and sway sponsors etc to keep ploughing their cash into our league system. With all the rules that have been bent before then what would be the point in any club turning up to a league where it’s own governing body has a heavily vested interest in seeing Rangers trump all other teams in that division.

    As reigning chief over this sorry mess then I believe that Neil Doncaster must resign now for the sake of Scottish football. Not only has he presided over this sorry mess and been responsible for allowing these clauses to be put in place but he has publicly stated the need for Rangers in the SPL and pretty much stated that the competition is dead without them. He has also put a figure in the public eye about how much the league will be worth to broadcasters should Rangers not be in it, which is apparently around 75% less than the current deal. Now I’m no business or marketing expert but if I was dealing with a man who values his business so poorly then I would not be offering top dollar for his product. With Neil Doncaster in charge, selling our league to investors would be like flogging a dead horse.

    Lastly, I was thinking about the threats that have been made to the SFL about the settlement fee and the bribe of 1 million pounds for accommodating Rangers in the First Division. Surely if the SFL and clubs like Stenhousemuir look to the long term then Rangers going into the 3rd tier could be the best thing that’s happened to them. There will still be a large demand to watch Rangers on the TV and with the SFL now owning the rights I’m sure they could sell Rangers matches to a broadcaster for more than the paltry 1 million pounds that the SPL are offering. They might even make up or exceed the payments due for the settlement arrangement which Doncaster has threatened to pull(although I’m sure the courts might have a different opinion on that eventuality) and this would be for at least 3 seasons with the influx of gate receipts from Rangers fans and other commercial deals and sponsorships that this may bring. Hardly the meltdown predicted by Doncaster and his cronies.

    To summarise the way forward is simple, Rangers to the third, Doncaster out(and Regan), restructure our leagues without the old firm at heart and let’s move on from this whole debacle.

  52. Kevin O'Neill says:

    There is one word synonymous with Scottish football these days……..

    Corruption.

  53. JOM says:

    Alex, this sorry mess that is Scottish football, just gets more and more embarrassing for all of us who still consider football to be a beautiful game.  Until recently we were able to believe that there were enough decent people involved in the governance of our game to ensure that if something seemed unfair that it was an oversight rather than an intention.  Now those very people who have lectured us about “Sporting Integrity” seek to subvert the will of the chairmen and the fans of Scottish football clubs for the sake of some immoral financial expediency.  They are even rigging the result that they deem appropriate.  It is akin to some undemocratic dictator and associated cronies rigging an election where the peoples’ will counts for nothing.  At least in this latter case we have the UN and international courts to exert some pressure on such power hungry tyrants.  Is there no greater power to force governing bodies such as th SFA, SPL and SFL to act as the paying public and their clubs wish them to.  I am well aware that UEFA and FIFA may well share the same lack of respect for those who actually fund the game given your own experience in getting any response from them.  I am not a Rangers fan but I believe that Newco Rangers should be admitted to SFL3 without any sanction as is the overwhelming will of their fans and all other club fans.  Any punitive sanctions should be taken against what remains of RFC 2012 Plc and those who destroyed it.

    1. jazbeer says:

      Well my club’s fans voted yes to Rangers in the first division by a two to one majority on Saturday. With conditions of course that Scottish football be reconstructed and a more equable financial arrangement is put in place. We in the wee clubs have been offered the opportunity to reconstruct Scottish football for the better and we are going to take it with both hands. And you see that on Friday. And as for the synthetic indignation by the sectarian/tribal internet warriors on this and other forums, may you disappear into the dustbin of history.

      1. Bruce says:

        Synthetic indignation? You really don’t have a clue, do you?

  54. Kevin says:

    Alex,

    Heard you on Off the Ball. It’s good to see some honest and good journalism on this story for once. Just you keep digging and reporting the facts and truth!

    It’s scandalous. Regan & Doncaster should hang their head in shame and be kicked out of Scottish Football for bringing our game into further disrepute with their gerrymandering to manipulate the rules of the SPL and SFL to their flawed aims. Sporting integrity and the wishes of the majority of fans and clubs? It’s the tail wagging the dog.
    FIFA need to get a grip here!

    1. jazbeer says:

      Alex’s report, like the others, stinks of anti-Rangers bias. The old club has been punished on many occasions and if he would stick to the facts instead of listening to the extremists at the other end of Glasgow then he should realise that the Serious Fraud Squad are now looking at the whole takeover of Rangers and what went on previously. They are looking in particular at two individual who, if found guilty, will face long jain sentences . And Rangers will be able to claim that some of the sanctions they have faced are grossly unfair as they are the victims, something the Celtic fans have loved to claim through the years

      1. Bruce says:

        Stick to the facts? May I suggest you do that yourself? The old club has not been punished on several occasions. An automatic 10 pt penalty and a £160,000 fine (which will never be paid) are the only actual punishments applied to the dead Rangers (1872-2012).

        Out of curiosity, which wee club do you support? Sevco? Airdrie?

  55. josie says:

    Sunday league amateur football is too good for this new-co and these gerrymandering league officials,someone must oversee the SFA and give a legal ruling surely

  56. Sporting Integrity says:

    As I understand it a club applying for SFL membership must have 3 years’ accounts.

    This would be an entirely reasonable stipulation to show that a club applying for membership is a bona fide football organisation and not some fly-by-night chancer outfit that might end up going bust at some point in the season.

    Such an event as a club going bust during a season would not only cause chaos to the other clubs in the league but would also bring into disrepute any league that admitted such a basket case in the first place.

    The rules are there to protect the clubs and are based on good reason. At this time more than ever the SFL clubs must stand firm and demand their rules of membership are observed and respected.

  57. Andrew Milligan says:

    I have been a Rangers Supporter since 1968 and I can confirm unless this New Rangers starts out in the 3rd division I will not be renewing my season ticket it is the only way for Rangers and Scottish football to start a clean sheet after all that has gone on in the last 20 odd years!!!!!!!!!

    1. John C F says:

      Well said Andrew – you seem to want it for the right reasons i.e. penance for past deeds and not some way of trying to hurt the game that your club has brought to the edge of a precipice. Wish there were more like you.

  58. josi says:

    Thanks for speaking up Andrew , RESPECT to you ma man

  59. Stuart says:

    Who decides which division Sevco will play in if proposal 1 is accepted and proposal 2 rejected?

  60. Hector Avocado says:

    Andrew Milligan
    9 July 2012
    at 3:11 pm

    Why Div3? You do not have 3 years audited accounts.
    Spartans are more entitled than newco.

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