THE HALF DECENT FOOTBALL MAGAZINE

20 March ~ Celtic winning the league at Ibrox would usually be the stuff of nightmares for Rangers fans. But after fearing the club may never play again, most supporters are relishing this Sunday's Old Firm clash. It gives Rangers a mini cup final – a chance to take something, no matter how myopic, from the champions elect. However, a Celtic title party in Govan could provide the only pain commensurate with the traumas of the last month. Three prospective purchasers registered their interest by last Friday's deadline. More suitors wait in the wings. The feeling that the worst is behind is perhaps dangerous, but Rangers' experience is very different to what Port Vale and Portsmouth are going through.

Over the last fortnight the SFA have charged Rangers and their disgraced owner Craig Whyte with bringing the game into disrepute; the players have agreed massive wage cuts; fans and past legends have instigated a fighting fund; and previous board members have faced recrimination. So far, so redolent of the classic football administration narrative arc. 

But there has not been large-scale player redundancies; none of the background staff have been paid off; and a bevy of multi-millionaires are now salivating over the prospect of owning Scotland's most successful club. Rangers fans have largely got away with the worst of the administration tropes. 

The ten-point deduction by the SPL means the club will finish the season without a trophy. But after winning eight of the 12 domestic prizes available over the last four years, a break from the Moet might benefit a few Ibrox stomachs. Rangers have been disqualified from European football next season, but the performances by Scottish clubs this season suggest that Ally McCoist is being saved from an embarrassing defeat in July.

The worry administration brought on employees at Ibrox and the inevitable run of poor results seem to have disappeared behind an undeniably inspirational rounding of the wagons by the supporters. Craig Whyte duped everyone as he ran the club into an unnecessarily early administration. What is more disturbing, however, is that it took this to alleviate the mutual boredom between Rangers and Scottish football. It is even worse that some Rangers fans think it is all Sir David Murray's fault, despite the fact they harangued him into moving the club on to anyone but himself.

Perhaps we have all seen too many financial football melodramas over the years. Since the days of Middlesbrough and Hull City hitting the skids, the media have tracked a distinct storyline for the larger club in penury. Over the last month Rangers fans have known the darkening financial clouds, the shock of administration, the subsequent heartwarming displays of fan loyalty and then the chivalric rescue attempts by benevolent investors.

There was even a predictability that the apparent turning of the corner came on a Friday evening in early March. As Celtic's fiscal decline halted in 1994, it was declaimed from the steps of Parkhead that "the rebels have won!" Rangers did it the dour, Presbyterian way – the biggest stars agreed to 75% pay-cuts and the administrators acknowledged seven serious potential purchasers of the club. Those that played for the jersey were now paying for it.

Without any camera-friendly chains being padlocked around gates, Rangers had their "hours from closure" moment. There had been talk, over the previous two days, of liquidation. The administrators played that hand beautifully. The subsequent wage-cuts allow the club to complete this season's fixtures and give the growing list of potential buyers time to formulate their bids.

While local greengrocers were turning up at Vale Park with fruit and water to keep the players hydrated at training, Rangers captain Steve Davis was dropping from £28,000 to £7,000 per week. While Portsmouth depended on a local 1970s muso to conjure a consortium, former Rangers director and Deutsche Bank guru Paul Murray – who resembles a retired member of Ultravox – has serious money and three fan groups behind his Blue Knights bid, which is the least serious in the eyes of the administrators.

The players are heroes. Any 75% salary cut is just that, irrespective of starting wage or the prospect of a big summer move. Some had offered to play for nothing. Their negotiations were delayed, but only because they wanted guarantees their sacrifice would save the club and that Whyte knew they would leave if he returned. This was typical of a core morale that helped Rangers reach a European final in 2008, win three SPLs on the trot and even win a domestic cup final with nine men. For at least a decade, this spirit has not been reciprocated by the louder of the club's fans.

American financiers are interested and the ubiquitous "Far East parties" are sniffing around. Foreign investment brings its risks but any mooted ownership model that includes fan groups – particularly the fractious and fratricidal Rangers Supporters Trust – could bring trouble in the long term. Stockport County fans may have more reason than most to doubt the intentions of Hibs-supporting businessman Brian Kennedy but the false reluctance of the bid from the Sale Sharks owner to "save" Rangers brought a quote truer than he knew: "It always ends in tears. It's like being Prime Minister!"

That Whyte was lauded by many Rangers fans when he arrived has established that the club is there for a more base form of exploitation. His ownership is allegedly null and void because he used future season ticket sales to fund his takeover. But smoother, more plausible conmen will have spotted an open window. Rangers will soon be out of administration but there remain worries about where we go next.

Ibrox will not go the way of Boothferry and Ayresome Parks, but if the fans continue to actively hound decent owners there is no guarantee our current travails will eventually lead to the successes latterly experienced by Hull City and Middlesbrough. Alex Anderson

Comments (33)
Comment by GCostanza 2012-03-20 11:11:35

Ha ha.

Myopia is alive and well.

Comment by markrpoole 2012-03-20 12:48:55

I agree that Paul Murray looks like a retired member of Ultravox. But isn't his bid the most serious because he's got Ticketus on-side?

PS. I can't begin to agree about the players being heroes. The pay-cuts are just for three months, aren't they? To use the Steven Davis example, he'll be earning £91,000 for those three months' work rather than £364,000. If that's going to impact him to the extent that he can be considered a hero, I can't begin to conceive what sort of lifestyle he's grown used to.

Comment by jertzeeAFCW 2012-03-20 12:50:33

Aaah bless.
So Rangers have escaped the worst of administration.
Nevermind the people and businesses that have been properly screwed by their flagrant cheating.
Those people and businesses who will get pretty much sod all for their debt.

Once again the paltry 10 point penalty for being millions in debt proves to be no deterent whatsoever, but it's all ok, because the worst is over for Rangers, and that's all that matters, isn't it.

Jesus wept.

Comment by Analogue Bubblebath II 2012-03-20 12:51:04

Davis doesn't strike me as the prima-donna, money-obsessed type.

But yes, it's all relative, and he'll go somewhere else in the summer anyway.

Comment by markrpoole 2012-03-20 13:03:19

Yeah, I get the impression Davis is a decent bloke. I was just using him as an example because we know how much he's paid.

By the way, if the Record's reports that McCulloch was willing to play for free are true, then fair play to him, it's a good gesture. I presume the administrators didn't take him up on it because they wanted uniformity across the squad. But surely they should be saving every penny they can...

Comment by Ichabod 2012-03-20 13:06:53

Very poor item. Another attempt by Murray's friends to blacken Whyte's name. Whyte is a pawn of Murray's and nothing such articles tell us is remotely true. Rangers are in deep trouble, as is Murray, and they should NOT be playing in the SPL next season.

Comment by A Doctor Speaks 2012-03-20 13:14:09

@jertzee.

Don't forget the lesser crime of all the trophies they 'won' or bought during the whole regime of these dubious practices, going back over twenty years or so.

Never mind their financial state;Should be stripped of this silverware based on their cheating.

Comment by Afrikaams 2012-03-20 13:39:47

Good summary Eck although there are more twists and turns to come I think. Sunday could be a painful experience, or it might be the highlight of the season, we'll see. Ignore the haters, if we were towed out to sea and torpedoed they'd complain we were a danger to shipping, yet without us their lives would clearly be quite empty.

@MarkPoole the issue isn't that footballers are overpaid, the demonstrably are, but that some of them are willing to make a financial sacrifice to help others. Even if it is only short term it is admirable and unusual. What the first team squad did was ensure that all employees remained in jobs. By doing that the club is easier to 'sell' as a going concern. They could have said they wanted their contracts honoured or else they were off. I think most people assumed they would. I don't know what team you support but to Rangers supporters their gesture was heroic.

Comment by JimDavis 2012-03-20 13:46:50

And what of the issue that caused Whyte to put the club into admin? It's all looks like a great big con to put pressure on the tax man over the pending tax evasion case.
For all his recent posturing, Murray sold the club for only £1 because he wanted some other sucker to take the wrap (and the bill). In Whyte he found a fellow who thought the status that being Ranger's owner would bring would out weigh the risk to his own pocket. Not sure how Murray can say he did a thorough due diligence when Whyte's troubled directorship history, like all troubled directorship histories, are matters of public record.
At the very least Ranger's should still be liable for the tax debt in full and Murray should have his knighthood taken away.

Comment by markrpoole 2012-03-20 14:03:13

Afrikaams, like you say, footballers are overpaid. Some more than others. Accepting 91 grand for three months' work before your pay goes back up or you leave in the transfer window is not heroic.

I don't have a problem with the players; I'm glad they agreed to a situation that meant there only two non-playing staff (the London office) were made redundant, but for them to have done anything else would have risked the future of the club.

Comment by Robert 2012-03-20 15:09:33

@Afrikaams:

"... if we were towed out to sea and torpedoed they'd complain we were a danger to shipping..."

Beautifully summed up.

The majority of the comments on this thread are a nice demonstration of "no one likes us".

Strip titles! Strip SPL status! Strip knighthoods! Strip jack naked!

As yet, and despite the most concerted and spiteful efforts of the stripper-brigade, Rangers have been found guilty of nothing.

I hope Rangers manage to come through this intact and subsequently clear their name. If so, whoever assumes control should never be allowed to forget the vindictive witch hunt currently in full swing.

Comment by jertzeeAFCW 2012-03-20 15:16:02

@robert Ha ha, don't believe that Rangers are as important that you think it is everyone against you.

My comments would be the same for any team cheating their way by running up debts and using other people's money to win things.

As for "Rangers have been found guilty of nothing" - that doesn't mean a thing. For a start they are guilty of racking up a huge loss at someone else's expense!
If we are talking "gulity in court" you could say that because a driver who speeds hasn't been caught speeding he is innocent. No, he is guilty of speeding, just never been caught.
Same with Rangers...??

It is not a withc hunt, just most people are getting sick and tired of clubs going into administration, blaming everyone but themselves and then restarting.
Chuck them out of the league, whether it's Pompey, Rangers or Port Vale.

Comment by Robert 2012-03-20 15:17:51

@markpoole:

It's all relative. 75% is 75%. Any one of them could have insisted their contract be honoured.

If your company was struggling and it was suggested to you that you accept one quarter of your wages for the next three months, in order that others don't lose their jobs, I imagine you'd probably do so. Most decent people would.

However - and it's an important however - most people have outgoings which amount to far more than a quarter of their wages. Even three months of not meeting those outgoings can have a major impact. I expect it's the same for most footballers, even those paid tens of thousands a week.

It's a sacrifice none of them had to make.

I'd agree that hero is probably too strong a word but seem determined to dismiss it as trivial. It is anything but.

Comment by markrpoole 2012-03-20 15:30:29

Robert, I'm not determined to dismiss it as trivial. I consider 'heroic' incredibly hyperbolic.

75% may be 75% but, at the risk of stating the obvious, £7000 a week is £7000 a week. Heaven help anyone who can't survive on £7000 a week for three months.

Comment by Alex Anderson 2012-03-20 15:57:28

@Afrikaams

cheers, Sir. Yes indeed - defo more twists and turns to come. And I'm definitely having your "danger to shipping" line :-)

You clearly get what I meant but it's my own fault that Mark didn't understand me on the "heroics" front. What I should have said was that, for me at least, the level of tabloid scrutiny and general opprobrium heaped upon any high-profile Old Firm employee - often by his own fans - is deserving of £1M per week. I mean there's a High Court trial going on right now which reminds us that whatever Neil Lennon is getting paid it's not enough. Yeah - they don't HAVE to do it. They don't have to be here. No-one's forcing them to play football/manage footballers but hunners of thoosans of folk are demanding they do and, other than in the case of Mervan Celik, it's obviously what these guys are best at in life.

Like Lennon at Tynecastle last season, we've seen Rangers players attacked physically on the pitch down the years by rival fans and we've heard the derision thrown at Rangers heroes by Rangers fans even in the midst of some of the greatest runs in our history - "time for your P45, Walter!" from about three years ago springs to mind (And Gordon Strachan only missed out on 4-in-a-row in his very last game in charge yet was widely disliked by the Celtic support) - and then you have the likes of last season: There's riot cops on the pitch at St Andrews and the Bernabeu yet it's 3 sendings off in an Old Firm game and a bit of handbags in the technical area, all watched by a crowd which then simply went home, which have the UK media screaming "what will become of the children??!!". Old Firm players were asked to play each other SEVEN TIMES last season, all in vastly decisive games, all with the whole world hoping it went nuclear and the tabs doing all they could to help that situation along. That's deserving of danger money at least. Anyone who referees or plays againt an Old Firm team should be getting extra dough too - it ain't no normal life.

The Rangers players are clearly not Raphael Lemkin or Nelson Mandella but, ye know, we're on a football website ... and I was trying to say that it's been so much easier for Rangers than it has been for other clubs who've had to face administration. The general point is that we are indeed getting off lightly. But, ye know, I'm starting to think that if Rangers were towed out to sea and ... SORRY, AFRIKAAMS ... sorry! :-)

Comment by jameswba 2012-03-20 16:01:24

'Chuck them out of the league, whether it's Pompey, Rangers or Port Vale.'

At least that's consistent. I'm 'disinterestedly interested' in this affair, and in the whole Old Firm thing, but it was beginning to seem that there was a big moral lather over this case because of the club it concerned. On the grounds that it's better to at least be noticed, perhaps Rangers can be happy about that (after all, the likes of the old Chester City, Telford United etc etc faded away with little accompaniment) but it's striking nonetheless.

Mark Poole, on the face of it, ie considering the numbers involved, I agree with you. But if (as I thought) you support a top-level team, you'll have surely learned long ago to accept that footballers are grossly overpaid(?) And if you go along, cheer them on every week, delight in their successes etc, aren't they to some extent your heroes already - before we've even considered pay-cuts? Even if they're not your heroes, would you want to discourage the younger generation from taking them as such? If the answer to all that's 'yes', I'd start to wonder what the point of paying out what we do for tickets, travel etc actually is.

Finally, if A Doctor Speaks gets his way, could Portsmouth also have their trophies taken away? And could we also say that Cardiff shouldn't just be given the 2008 FA Cup but should recontest the final, this time against WBA, the team beaten by Pompey 'based on cheating' in the semi? Thanks in advance...

Comment by Alex Anderson 2012-03-20 16:10:33

... RIGHT - which one of you said Nelson Mandella could do a better job at centre-half than Lee McCulloch?? Come on now - WHO SAID IT??!! ...

Comment by markrpoole 2012-03-20 17:17:22

jameswba, I'd agree that all top-level players are well paid. But outside of Rangers, Celtic and Hearts, I don't think any players in Scotland are on over £7000 a week. And some at Celtic have surprisingly (in this context) non-ridiculous pay. I believe Beram Kayal is currently on less than £7000 a week.

I think the absolute figures give us far better perspective here than the percentages. Like I said, anyone should be able to survive on £7000 a week, no matter how massive their house or preposterous their car (sorry, I go all taste police when it comes to rich footballers' cars).

And I'm sure the players are heroes to Rangers fans for the simple reason that they play for Rangers. If that's all that Alex meant in his article, and not that they're heroes for accepting a three-month pay cut, then I misunderstood.

Comment by jameswba 2012-03-20 17:56:56

Mark, with hindsight - and a re-reading of Alex's article - it seems I somewhat widened the justification of why they're heroes. Fair enough, and after that I'm obviously not going to get you to admit that your team's players are heroes to you, just as Rangers' are to their fans.

Alex later gives another justification for calling them heroes and I'd pretty much agree with that one too, though it does raise yet another question ; given the intensity of footballing life up there, what the club means to people etc etc, didn't self-preservation (of their standing, at least) play a part in the players' decision to take that cut?

Comment by markrpoole 2012-03-20 18:03:17

jameswba, do you mean their physical self-preservation? You may have a point. Put it this way, I can't imagine Craig Whyte walking the streets of Glasgow, Belfast, Lanarkshire, Ayrshire or West Lothian without an extravagant disguise any time soon.

Comment by jameswba 2012-03-20 19:08:21

'do you mean their physical self-preservation?'

Mark, no, I'd have no right to judge on that, I meant preserving their popularity/standing among the fans. And sorry I didn't make that clearer.

As for what you say about Craig Whyte, I've read similar elsewhere.

Comment by multipleman78 2012-03-20 20:42:12

here we go again with this notion of removing trophies based on us being in debt. When we were winning all those trophies the bank were happy with our debt and like any debt if the bank are happy with your account status then you are not cheating. Once the bank turn round and say "right you, geez oor money," then its time to tighten up and pay what you owe. This is what Rangers were doing and had reduced their arrears to 18 million by the time Whyte took over.

It is the same the world over. Could you imagine the banks said to the Glazers "pay up now boys," or to Barcelona "Sell Messi or else." All the big teams who win trophies around Europe have large debt. So this Barcelona side, ranked as perhaps the greatest ever should be stripped of all their titles in last couple of seasons and rated as just a bunch of cheats. That is your rational is it not.

As for the tax cases, i believe that case is still at tribunal stage. I hope to christ those of you who have decided our guilt are never on a jury cos it doesnt sound like you believe in innocent until proven guilty.

If you want to say that administration means starting from the bottom i have absolutely no arguement at all. I would agree with that. Any side taking that route should be punished heavily and especially when its done by a scumbag like Whyte. Like i said, Rangers debt had come down steadily year upon year and yet he moved us into administration within 9 months. If the league find us guilty of breaking their rules then i have no problem with punishments that mean loss of trophies cos that is the league rules but that is up to the league to decide and i do believe that hasnt been decided yet so again no guilt as of yet so how can we be punished. However taking titles cos of playing with debt is simply ridiculous. You could say if we lose tax case that we were playing with money that was owed to the taxpayer. Fair enough but clearly Rangers thought they were on the right side of the law when applying this scheme. EBT's are not illegal but HMRC think we applied them incorrectly. Do you really want them punished for an error in judgement by the board? Any punishments should come now like any tax case. If we owe money then we pay it now and keep the titles.

Comment by AFC42 2012-03-20 22:32:58

Trophy stripping is being called for as punishment for playing incorrectly registered players, which would appear to be the case for all players who were paid in part through an EBT. A former Rangers director seemed to confirm this on channel 4 news tonight.

Comment by Broon 2012-03-20 22:56:40

Perhaps "heroes" is too strong a word (though all footballers are heroes to somebody), but Steven Davis agreeing to that pay-cut is, in essence, a donation of 250,000 pounds to his club. I certainly would not donate a vast sum of money like that to my employer if it was in financial difficulty.

The talk of trophy-stripping and hysterical indignation at "flagrant cheating" is laughable. Rangers are in administration because our current owner, under whose control we have won precisely no trophies, is a conman who used almost 10m of PAYE for running costs. Other than that, we MIGHT (but might not) owe 18m to Whyte himself, and a few piddling sums to SPL clubs that will be paid up ASAP, and that is it. As a poster above said, that debt is nothing compared to the debts run up by... just about every successful football club in the world.

Whether EBTs are legal or illegal is a technical tax question that the authorities have had over a decade to resolve, and still have not done so. And if - IF - they were found to have been illegal all along (I still dont get how retrospective legislating is possible here; who are we to know the mind but not the letter of the legislature?) THEN we will have been guilty of nothing more than taking risky advice from our tax lawyer. It´s hardly calciopoli.

Comment by AFC42 2012-03-20 23:10:25

I forgot to add: We can't tow you out to sea, on account of the asbestos in Ibrox creating an environmental hazard......

Comment by Analogue Bubblebath II 2012-03-21 00:24:53

" I mean there's a High Court trial going on right now which reminds us that whatever Neil Lennon is getting paid it's not enough."

Cheap and crass.

Comment by Alex Anderson 2012-03-21 08:07:23

@Analogue Bubblebath - why is it cheap and crass? The man's been sent BOMBS IN THE POST for christ's sake. In what way is it crass to say that he's an example - probably the best ever - of why Old Firm players and managers deserve larger financial packages than most?

Are you on of those idiots who hates Lennon so much you can't stand to see even a Rangers fan sticking up for his right to a quiet, safe off-field life?

Comment by Alex Anderson 2012-03-21 09:06:20

I don't really remember too many scenarios where opposing fans have been quick to confer hero status on players of their most direct or loathed rivals - seems ridiculous that this has become an argument here.

It's an article in which I'm saying I think Rangers "got away" with administration - It's an article in which I'm saying we maybe even DESERVE to be skelped at home by Celtic on Sunday just so some of our fans will realise exactly what we got ourselves into by running Sir David Murry out of town. It's an article in which I'm apologising to the likes of Port Vale and Portsmouth for even using the same word as applied to them - administration - to describe what Rangers are "going through". Rangers are probably safe, we'll be fine - I don't think that's fair - and you have to wonder if publicising the fact some Rangers fans have a sene of responsibility is why the "heroes" line has got to so many posters who, tellingly, have never worshipped a footballer (especially not one who was on anything over £7k per week), as this would mean they have to engage in an honest, full-disclosure argument rather than chipping away from the side-lines.

If the fact this is a FOOTBALL WEBSITE doesn't provide enough context for the kind of hero worship we're taling about then I actually further contextualised it with the following: "While local greengrocers were turning up at Vale Park with fruit and water to keep the players hydrated at training, Rangers captain Steve Davis was dropping from £28,000 to £7,000 per week.". Ignored.

Thanks to JamesWBA, Robert, Multipleman and Broon for taking it up with patience and class and the fact that Afrikaams can't even have with a nice wee line without someone feeling a paranoid need to think up a direct retort, tells us all we need to know about this non-debate.

It all has a slightly hysterical edge and, to be honest, it's only that I know Mark Poole is a contributor to WSC that I've taken it up. But then, Mark, you've "misunderstood" James WBA's post so that you can describe Rangers fan in terms of perptuationg violence on their players - took you a few posts but you eventually got there, eh mate?. Potential title party at Ibrox on Sunday - if you can't enjoy this season then you really should give it up, Mark. It's clearly stopped being about the football for you. And this is the last time I'll be entertaining any of your bar-room zealot p*sh. Get back to writing articles - if you have so much to say then form it into a cogent argument. You're a good writer but your posts under my articles are the bleatings of a scared wee boy - terrified that life isn't a simple as he wants it to be. There's a definite desire to maintain the enmity between the Old Firm in your rants, whereas what we need is to be poking holes in that nonsense.

I think it's down to Rangers fans to decide whether or not Rangers players are heroes. I'm a Rangers fan.

Just so there's no mistake (unfortunately, I can't do anything about the level of WILFUL misunderstanding), the Rangers players are heroes. Both for their contribution over the last few seasons AND for taking that wage cut.

As well as giving my opinion, my take on events at Ibrox, I'm reporting facts above. Rightly or wrongly, the Rangers players, right now, are regarded as heroes by the vast majority of the Rangers support.

So the faux moralising and terrified misreading of the aticle is as informative about the posters as it is a bogus form of "argument".

There's a piece on the site this week about Portsmouth's proximity to liquidation - I'm going back to give it another read now and make damn sure no-one staying on at Fratton Park is being described as anything other than evil!! :-)

Comment by Hofzinser 2012-03-21 13:37:34

What about the Big Tax Case? Surely until that's decided it's impossible for anyone to say what sort of state Rangers will be in by the end of the season? Speculation about CVAs and potentiakl agreements with HMRC is, at the moment, simply that - the fact is no one yet knows what will happen if Rangers are hit with a bill for tens of millions.

We also don't know anything yet (or at least, little) of what the motivations and plans of the "bevy of multi-millionaires" may be, and how much hinges on the Big Tax Case.

The tone of this article seems very premature indeed to me. There are far too many unknowns, and the fact that the administrators are making positive noises isn't necessarily indicative of anything other than that they want to attract investors.

Comment by markrpoole 2012-03-21 15:28:04

Alex, I have no desire to maintain the enmity between Celtic and Rangers. I'd love there to be far less enmity between the two clubs, as would most of us who grew up in or around Glasgow. I don't need to be lectured to about the need to poke holes in that enmity.

My posts are not 'the bleatings of a scared wee boy who's terrified that life isn't as simple as he wants it to be'. If you think that you really need to re-read them. They're simple statements of opinion. I've exhibited no 'false moralising', no 'terrified misreading', no 'wilful misunderstanding', no 'bogus arguments', and no 'bar room zealot pish'.

The only - relatively minor - point I came on here to make is that I don't think any footballer (at any club) who's on what - to most of us - are astronomical wages is making that much of a sacrifice by taking a three-month pay cut. And I've already said that of course they're your heroes for the simple reason that they play for your club.

I've certainly not set out to tar Rangers fans as violent. For the record, I'm sure some of our fans could physically threaten our players in similar circumstances: it's been well documented that there are enough bampots on both sides (and at plenty other clubs too).

But I tell you what I don't like: I don't like people deliberately misconstruing my comments to accuse me of an agenda I don't have. And I'm not keen on the several wide-ranging accusations in your last post ('false moralising', etc).

And I'm surprised you accuse me of ranting. I've made one point on here, then answered people who've questioned me. I've said positive things about Steve Davis and Lee McCulloch. It's really pretty straightforward. I'm sorry if I'm not as devious as you accuse me.

But like I say, like most folk, I want less enmity between Celtic and Rangers. Can we chill out and maybe share a virtual pint or two?

PS. I enjoyed your reminiscences under your previous article about that phone-in, by the way. I've you'll indulge me, I'll reminisce briefly about our 97/98 title victory. On the evening after you lost to Killie, one of my mates who supports the Gers - and who must have been hurting at missing out on ten in a row - came straight up to me, bought me a brandy, put his arm around my shoulder and congratulated us on probably winning the league. I'll never forget it.

Comment by JimDavis 2012-03-21 15:44:52

multipleman87 "Rangers debt had come down steadily year upon year and yet he moved us into administration within 9 months. "

Alex Anderson "It's an article in which I'm saying I think Rangers "got away" with administration "

That is because this administration was just an attempted con to create a better bargaining position for the tax fraud case. It seems to have blown up in Whyte's face thanks in no small part to Ticketus, but it was an attempt to force a deal with HMRC without going through the court process. It’s a total sham, and simply an attempt to rip off the tax payer.

Comment by multipleman78 2012-03-21 20:47:20

Yeah Jim its a sad state of affairs. As a Rangers man i was more than happy to see us tighten our belts, maybe sell a couple of big names to cover Champions League loss and get our debt down as we awaited outcome of tax case. That seemed to be our plan. Instead Mr Whyte has brought on all this nonsense. I have absolutely no idea what his end game is but i am sure he has one and i am sure it culminates in him walking away with millions but how he gets there i havent a scooby.

Like i said the debt was 18 million. If we wanted to get that down quickly all we had to do was sell Jelavic like we did for 5 million and offer up MacGregor who could have got us around 8 million at a push. Instead Ticketus deal was done, Whyte used it for takeover and has left us floundering. I have no clue about business at all so i do feel a bit out of my depth here but did that deal lead to Rangers getting absolutely no money from ticket sales this season? The administrators keep saying we are a serious loss making company yet the debt was on the way down before Whyte arrived.

So i agree with Alex, we have got off lightly so far in my opinion. I think relegation down the divisions would be appropriate. For me that should be the punishment for any administration club.

Comment by Uncle Toni 2012-03-22 13:41:50

There are some very deluded people posting on this thread.

Related articles

Rangers shun steady progress in favour of Steve Gerrard’s star quality
Embed from Getty Images // The former Liverpool player’s move to Glasgow has been hailed as a risk for all – but Rangers can hardly...
It’s Not All About The Old Firm: Defying the odds in Scottish football
by Scott Burns Pitch Publishing, £12.99Reviewed by Gordon CairnsFrom WSC 373, March 2018Buy the book Eight clubs from outside Glasgow have...
Rangers a big, wobbling mess and falling behind as managerial saga continues
Embed from Getty Images // Having failed in an approach for Aberdeen’s Derek McInnes, the Ibrox job has been handed to Graeme Murty until...