A Lie for a Lie

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The “Lawwell Letter” is trending everywhere this week. To elucidate, it is email sent to (among others) Peter Lawwell and Eric Riley of Celtic on 26 July 2012 by SPL CEO Neil Doncaster.

The email came with an attached copy of the Five Way Agreement (hereafter “5WA”, the deal between Sevco, Rangers, the SFA, the SPL and the SFL). Now that it has been made public, it seems safe to speak openly about what it all means for us as folk who believe in sporting integrity.

I would preface my comments with a caveat though. On the face of it, the Celtic Chief Executive appears to have misled the gathering at the recent Celtic AGM. He was asked by a shareholder if Celtic were involved in the Five Way Agreement. Lawwell replied, “No”, and gave same “No” response to the follow up question, “have you seen it?”

Given that a copy of that email was in the possession of a few folk before that AGM, I have to admit to being surprised by that answer – although even more surprised at the apparent lack of due diligence implied by the lack of knowledge of its content.

We have attempted to contact Mr Lawwell to ask him if he would like to comment on the apparent discrepancy between the evidence and his answer (and I am sure we are not the only ones to have done so). To date, we have received no response. Given the complete lack of acknowledgement of the existence of this anomaly in the MSM, we should perhaps assume that none will be forthcoming.

Perhaps there is an explanation (yes I know), but Celtic should know, like Rangers old and new have come to realise, that silence on these matters breeds deep suspicion and distrust.

Assuming for the minute that Occam’s Razor applies here, there may be an uncomfortable truth emerging for Celtic fans – that Rangers (old and new) do not have a monopoly on dishonesty. There is also an uncomfortable truth that should emerge for Rangers fans too – that as we have said all along, this has never been about just Rangers, but about the governance of the game.

If the Celtic CEO did lie to the AGM a few weeks ago what are the consequences? He broke no laws as far as I can see. One insider I spoke to said simply this,

“So he lied. So what? What happens now? It’s irrelevant”

That is of course absolutely true. As long as controlling shareholders are happy that Resolution 12 is buried, and that no deep inquiry into governance is held into the workings of the game in Scotland, the lie is nonpunishable, though it would be a mistake to believe that accountability is confined only to the corporate rules governing Boards and shareholders; the corporate veil of “I was only following company policy” can be readily challenged in the court of public opinion, which has no statute of limitations.

What all this demonstrates of course is that Celtic have been saying one thing to their fans and shareholders, nodding agreement in private meetings about how appalling Rangers behaviour was, tut-tutting over how amateurish the authorities were, and wringing their hands in frustration at what a sham the LNS inquiry turned out to be.

At the same time, they have done nothing, allowed small shareholders to spend not inconsiderable suns progressing the matter, and quietly hoped that the “appetite” for justice would diminish so they could get back to whatever it is they and the rest do when subject to little or no scrutiny.

Whilst ten in a row is on the table of course, they can get away with it. To Celtic fans right now, understandably, nothing else matters. But what if TIAR is derailed? Not a stretch to imagine that the Parkhead kitchen could get uncontrollably hot in that circumstance. And when the TIAR squirrel finally ends its scurry, in either success or failure, where will the fans attention be diverted?

Perhaps the arrogance that permits making (allegedly) false statements to a general meeting, and (allegedly) misleading shareholders over Res 12 is borne of the knowledge that the parachutes are ready to be deployed when either of the above scenarios come to pass? If TIAR is achieved or goes south, are they already prepared for an emergency exit?

Celtic have two major shareholders whose combined holding is over 50% of the club’s shares. Dermot Desmond and Nick Train. Desmond is now in his eighth decade and Train is reportedly having some business difficulties. Both may well be moved to get out anyway, but fan unrest would make their decision a whole lot easier.

And Lawwell himself is – if you believe the MSM – on the wanted list of nearly as many top clubs as Alfredo Morelos.

The foregoing of course is extremely “Old Firm” centric, and as the two biggest clubs in the country they certainly have the biggest impact on the game, culturally, socially and financially. However there is no get-out clause here for others.

We KNOW there is evidence of fraud surrounding the licencing issue in 2012. We KNOW there is evidence of a cover up over that, and the EBT-related registration issues for Old Rangers. We KNOW that the Five Way Agreement was signed by football authorities in the knowledge that it would rob their own rules of judicial authority with regard to compliance by RFC prior to 2012.

We also know that NOT ONE club has taken a meaningful stand against any of it.

Clubs are saying one thing to supporters and doing their best to derail those supporters’ efforts on the other. We can also infer (not unreasonably) that the folk who run the clubs think that we as fans have no right to interfere in how they run their operations.

As I said earlier, Celtic can do what they like whilst TIAR is live, but afterwards, however it ends, the fans and shareholders involved in Res 12 will still be asking questions. Celtic in particular know how fatal it can be to alienate their own fan base – a fan base that has flexed its muscles with devastating effect for the boardroom in the past. And it is the wrath of the fans of all clubs that will eventually see the charlatans get their just desserts.

Our job as fans is to continue to hold those who care little for the honour and beauty of football to account, to continue to press them on their refusal to deal with arguably the biggest sporting scandal in Scottish history.

The bottom line (which is of course what the folk in boardrooms care about) is this. They need us far more than we need them. As fans of different clubs, the sensibility of those of us at SFM recognises that the real battle, the real war, is not between rival fans or rival clubs, but between the arrogant, self-entitled clique who run our game; who lie for fun, who cheat and belittle the sport; and the good folk who make it possible for the game to prosper.

Resolution 12 is not just about Rangers – nor is it just about Celtic. It deserves to be embraced by every true football fan in the country. The Res 12 franchise needs to widened

Sooner or later the fans will demonstrate their unhappiness with the money men. They did it in 2012, and they will inevitably do so again.

1898 COMMENTS

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  1. Big Pink

    good post,i said that the other day,lose the holy grail(10inarow)and the gloves will be off,win the 10 and i think lawell and desmond will go anyway


  2. Excellent and timely post, Big Pink.

    How on earth Lawwell could stand up at the Celtic AGM and do his Sergeant Schults routine (“I know nothing”) beats me.  In the wake of the RFC collapse Lawwell and Doncaster travelled the length of the country together trying to negotiate new sponsorship deals for the SPL.  I would find it incredible that they did not discuss in detail the terms and implications of the 5WA in their many hours spent together on planes and in hotels.  The same goes for Lawwell’s close contact with Petrie and Regan over this critical period.

    As a Celtic shareholder I wrote individual letters to each of the directors of Celtic plc re: Resolution 12.  I sent them all by recorded delivery.  I never received an acknowledgement from the club far less any sort of reply.  In 2012 Celtic FC hosted a group of Thai schoolchildren (‘The Thai Tims’) at Parkhead.  I wrote a note of appreciation to the directors for their kind gesture.  Lo and behold, I received a thank you letter by return of post, signed by Mr Lawwell personally.  How this man can devote his time to such trivial correspondence yet completely ignore the deep concerns of the shareholders shows the Board’s utter contempt for the shareholders and fans.  Expect further prevarication in the matter of Celtic’s knowledge of the 5WA.


  3. “Now that it [the 5-Way Agreement] has been made public, it seems safe to speak openly about what it all means for us as folk who believe in sporting integrity.”…

    Not only ‘safe to speak openly’ but really obliged to speak out.

    No journalist or editor of any journal was present at and a signatory to that ridiculous and shameful agreement. It now behoves every editor to instruct his or her hacks to behave like serious journalists and start asking the really awkward questions that need to be asked. 

    And there is any number of questions to be asked, not least ‘why the secrecy’ if there was nothing underhand or deceitful, (always allowing for a degree of commercial confidentiality where appropriate). 

    Let’s now hear them probing into that, AND into the Res12 issue, and into the Bryson intervention.

    Let them get their teeth into a disgustingly dirty mess, roust out the destroyers of trust in our game who allowed their rotten hearts to be so panicked as to make them ready to forswear themselves. 

    This , as the blog says, is not about TRFC directly except in so far as they lie about their ‘history’ stretching back more than 7 years but about the absurd measures taken by the Governance  bodies to avoid punishing the most sports cheating club in the history of Scottish football in the fully appropriate way, and to create the myth that going into liquidation did not, uniquely for RFC of 1872, mean the death of that club!

     


  4. Hi, can't get in to site on laptop, but can on phone, its saying this site can't provide a secure connection? 


  5. Tony

    Clear your browser cache.

    We had to move the site after it was subject to more nonsense from hackers. Actually had moved it to a co-hosted platform in a trial to see if we could save some cash. Co-hostees not best pleased with things after the intrusion 🙂

    Consequently, there are some DNS and SSL issues that are caused by the move. Clearing browser cash should work.

    Also going to a command prompt in windows and typing

    ipconfig /flushdns

    may also help. Could also use a different browser. Otherwise a few hours will se it all cleared up


  6. Billy Boyce 28th January 2020 at 21:37

    Excellent and timely post, Big Pink.

    How on earth Lawwell could stand up at the Celtic AGM and do his Sergeant Schults routine (“I know nothing”) beats me.  In the wake of the RFC collapse Lawwell and Doncaster travelled the length of the country together trying to negotiate new sponsorship deals for the SPL.  I would find it incredible that they did not discuss in detail the terms and implications of the 5WA in their many hours spent together on planes and in hotels.  The same goes for Lawwell’s close contact with Petrie and Regan over this critical period.

    As a Celtic shareholder I wrote individual letters to each of the directors of Celtic plc re: Resolution 12.  I sent them all by recorded delivery.  I never received an acknowledgement from the club far less any sort of reply.  In 2012 Celtic FC hosted a group of Thai schoolchildren (‘The Thai Tims’) at Parkhead.  I wrote a note of appreciation to the directors for their kind gesture.  Lo and behold, I received a thank you letter by return of post, signed by Mr Lawwell personally.  How this man can devote his time to such trivial correspondence yet completely ignore the deep concerns of the shareholders shows the Board’s utter contempt for the shareholders and fans. 

    Expect further prevarication in the matter of Celtic’s knowledge of the 5WA.

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

    Resistance is futile, we know what they did that summer and what they didn't do two years later in respect of the LNS Commission.


  7. Good one BP, and it probably reflects the uneasiness felt amongst Bampots since the – alleged – revelations about Lawwell.

     

    I can’t speak for other clubs, but my own club is supposed to be ‘more than a club’.

     

    However, if that belief is simply suspended, and the club regards itself as just another club / business…

    then I suppose it doesn’t really matter if a CEO lies to minority shareholders – and the majority owners can just ignore the fans’ feedback.

    And again, IF the allegations are true… then the corrupt SFA and SPFL are NEVER going to evolve into trustworthy and professionally run organisations.

    Not good.  angel


  8. John Clark 28th January 2020 at 19:38

    easyJambo @ 17.39

    ———-'

    Yes  and I lost a wee comment on your post.(still can't access  via pc,so am reduced to trying to use my phone)

    Surely HSL must have considered the possibility of RG doing exactly that??

     I ask that because not being well versed in these matters I was surprised to learn that a shareholder in a private company cannot sell his shares unless the board agrees

    But surely HSL would have had professional expert advice. They had no promises (I think)  that the club would move to fan ownership , but they must have planned on getting a blocking power?

    Curious.

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

    Sir Tom Farmer's plan was for fans (including HSL) to own 51% of the shares in the club. The HSL scheme used fans' monthly pledges to raise the cash that was handed over to the club and every couple of months HSL would receive new shares in return.

    It is clear that HSL didn't have a legally binding agreement with STF to ensure that they could achieve their goals, 20% to get a representative on the Board, 25% for a "blocking" stake etc.  They were never going to be able to obtain a majority shareholding themselves as other parties held a few percent of the club shares.

    In my opinion, STF (and Rod Petrie) shafted the fans, not just by selling their own shares, but allowing Ron Gordon to buy the shares earmarked for HSL, thus freezing out HSL from further purchases.

    There is a contrast with what has happened at Hearts. The FOH agreement with Ann Budge looks (to my untrained eye) to be fairly watertight and prevents Ann Budge from selling out her shareholding to a third party, without FOH's agreement.  That hasn't been tested to date, although I know that she has had at least one approach from a prospective buyer (that one may have come from Ron Gordon before he bought Hibs). Anyway, Ann Budge knocked back the approach on the basis of the binding(?) agreement with FOH.  

    If you look at paragraph 4 of the Hibs AoA dated 16 January 2015 then you will see that the Board has the power to block any share transfer.  Out out curiosity, I checked the RIFC AoA and they have similar powers.

    https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/SC005323/filing-history?page=3


  9. Sooner or later the fans will demonstrate their unhappiness with the money men. They did it in 2012, and they will inevitably do so again.
    ……………..
    Sooner the Better i say.


  10. Thanks Big Pink.

    It is very unlikely that the current email leak was anything other than a genuine communication between Doncaster and a sizeable working group united for varying reasons some being alignment some being future plans but all underwritten by money.

    The fact they used Peter's private address for the stuff he didn't want his PA to see is an extra insight.

    We had three broad groups

    1 The leading inner sanctum of chairmen who had and still have control of the strategy of the SPFL and the way the SFA see the world. 

    2 The administrators whose jobs well paid packages bonuses and future prospects depended on Scottish football continuing with two big Glasgow clubs to keep the tv deal and various other packages in place.

    3 The other Premier League clubs, mostly minnows like Inverness CT whose Chairman was simply told the working team and the strategy of continuation via the 5 way agreements was best for all and to vote it through.

    What helped the tabled plan get full support around the Premier league directors table was the plan of sharing out of the cash due from the league to the dying Rangers.

    This proved a bonus to Doncaster and his wee cabal because it provided an almost immediate and unexpected financial bonus to those who might have objected, for whatever reason, to sign off the and support the continuity of oldco/newco in the top league.

    Turnbull's subsequent wee revolution put paid to the top league continuation and the SPL2 plans but a form of continuity was then eventually finagled – just not quite in time for the Brechin match.

    But pretty soon after.

     

    If all this were a stick of rock it would have several names right through the core from end to end.

    Peter Lawwell's name would be one of them.

     

    I can see the conflict between what he and Desmond saw and see their vision of Celtic and how that clashes directly with what Auldheid & Co think.

    Peter thinks he knows that sooner or later  all the RES 12 stuff will be forgotten as the fans move on.

    To him it was and is all about money.

     

     

     

     

     


  11. Finloch 29th January 2020 at 08:31

    '..To him it was and is all about money.'

    ++++++++++++++++

    It is not too much a leap of imagination , Finloch, to wonder to what extent the SFA might actually have helped, by the creation of the myth that RFC of 1872 did not really die, in the task of persuading the FCA that shares in the new RIFC plc were shares in in a company that owned the original RFC of 1872, and not in new club that hadn't kicked a ball in competition? 

    The success of the IPO depended on investors believing that it was 'continuity most successful club in the world'

    SevcoScotland/TRFC most certainly were not that. As every lying sod knew at the time, the most successful club in the world had gone into liquidation and had ceased to exist.

    In my view, there are very serious questions to be asked if the SFA was party to plans to mislead  investors, as well perhaps, of being guilty of lying to UEFA and thereby cheating one club out of UEFA monies that were its due.

    What an atmosphere of suspicion and mistrust now exists, and with questions like those needing answered, it's no wonder that those under suspicion have to hang together in maintaining the fictions for fear that if truth were to be known, they'd hang separately!

     

     


  12. Two very simple questions that have continued throughout.

     

    1/  What would Rangers* and Rangers (note no asterisk this time) fans have done if the SFA/SPFL had played it by the book?  Left?  No chance.

     

    2/  When TIAR does inevitably come unstuck (whether before T or afterwards) one expects to hear Lawell plead something along the lines of "there was no other way" or "what else could we do?"  Does he expect any agreement let alone sympathy, from Celtic fans and from the rest of us diddies? 

     

    And that is why the latter two questions are interlinked.  There was no other way?  No, you made damn sure of that!

     

    Ps.  Done it for Benji.


  13. Sorry JC @ 09.18 I dont buy that.

    Were investors genuinely bothered about the continuity thing?  One can only assume that the only body, the ONLY body that told them it was necessary were the individuals standing in the dock in front of them.  Like a veteran house burglar claiming leniency was necessary as he had a job planned for a week on Friday. 

    Anyone with a financial hat on knew and knows damn fine what liquidation is and what it meant.  The current investors are just as aware.  What they needed was a stadium, facilities and licence all of which they had and a fan base which, no disrespect to the rest of us, any sort of challenge/supposed re-emergence to the top would generate.  I genuinely don't believe that the continuity myth was necessary.  Certainly not to the extent of isolating the rest of the Clubs fans which they inevitably have.  If they think that's going away they can think again.  And that now applies as much to Lawell as it does to King.


  14. Scottish football is corrupt and that is a fact. RFC (IL) cheated Scottish Football  and European Football for at least 13 years that we know of. EBTs were declared as earnings by SC in 2017, this meant that the club had fielded in the region of 55 players illegally as these earnings were not declared to our SFA.  This meant no punishment when normally one illegal player fielded means 3 0 loss. This club played in Scotland, Europe and players played for their country in European Championships and World Cups, all illegally.  LNS sham went unchallenged and them being the same club goes unchallenged by SFA, smsm and our football clubs. The 5 way agreement is the pinnacle of this level of cheating and corruption. Every one involved should be made to answer including and imo especially Celtic. We always rightly condemn glib so Lawwell has to be honest no matter what the outcome. Since 2011 our game has lost all integrity and shame on all involved. This new club is killing our game and being allowed to. The fear from our smsm and SFA to state that Ibox club is a new club is one of the main reasons we are where we are. Fact.  This new club is in debt every year and needs 10 million to see season out and nothing gets mentioned in smsm and SFA takes no action. I want this new club to win nothing as like old club they are cheating financially.  With a bit of luck Mr Ashley might put wheels in motion to punish this new entity. 


  15. Smugas 29th January 2020 at 12:07

    Sorry JC @ 09.18 I dont buy that.

    Were investors genuinely bothered about the continuity thing?  One can only assume that the only body, the ONLY body that told them it was necessary were the individuals standing in the dock in front of them.  Like a veteran house burglar claiming leniency was necessary as he had a job planned for a week on Friday. 

    Anyone with a financial hat on knew and knows damn fine what liquidation is and what it meant.  The current investors are just as aware.  What they needed was a stadium, facilities and licence all of which they had and a fan base which, no disrespect to the rest of us, any sort of challenge/supposed re-emergence to the top would generate.  I genuinely don't believe that the continuity myth was necessary.  Certainly not to the extent of isolating the rest of the Clubs fans which they inevitably have.  If they think that's going away they can think again.  And that now applies as much to Lawell as it does to King.

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    I agree anyone with a financial hat on would have undertaken proper due diligence before investing and would have had the ability to recognise what they were investing in. However, not everyone investing was wearing that hat and that is the moral and compliance issue JC is raising here.

    I too believe the continuity myth was unecessary. Rangers fans aren't the overly crtical type and just needed a "Rangers" to follow. There has been a lot of corruption and artifice involved in promoting an unecessary myth and in the process shames those concerned at the SFA and all other clubs.

    The silence of other clubs and fans makes them complicit. As a great man once said:

    "If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor. If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality. "

    One thing this whole shitshow has confirmed though is the suspicions of the diddy clubs that the corrupting of the game was led by the Old Firm with their close working relationship. This led to carve ups (prize money, gate money, voting rights etc) and their ultimate aim to satisfy their greed by leaving for the EPL. Cue a storm of thumbs down!


  16. Smugas 29th January 2020 at 12:07 Sorry JC @ 09.18 I dont buy that. Were investors genuinely bothered about the continuity thing? One can only assume that the only body, the ONLY body that told them it was necessary were the individuals standing in the dock in front of them. Like a veteran house burglar claiming leniency was necessary as he had a job planned for a week on Friday. Anyone with a financial hat on knew and knows damn fine what liquidation is and what it meant. The current investors are just as aware. What they needed was a stadium, facilities and licence all of which they had and a fan base which, no disrespect to the rest of us, any sort of challenge/supposed re-emergence to the top would generate. I genuinely don't believe that the continuity myth was necessary. Certainly not to the extent of isolating the rest of the Clubs fans which they inevitably have. If they think that's going away they can think again. And that now applies as much to Lawell as it does to King.

    _______________________

    Perhaps not, Smugas, but Green didn't seem to know it. If for no other reason he had to convince the existing players they were still with the club they'd signed for and not some new club with limited prospects. The fact that some of them walked away because it being a new club meant they could, but some didn't, shows how necessary convincing some people of the club's continuity was. I also think the depression and embarrassment of supporting a club that was correctly acknowledged as not Rangers would have reduced the Ibrox crowd enough to stymie it's progress, or, at least, create the fear of it in Green's mind.

    I think Green had enough assurances from the game's governors, and the (correct) belief that the media would play ball, that Sevco would be universally accepted (bar a few dissenters) to go ahead with the purchase of Rangers' assets but may not have if he had to push a new club to make his fortune. He could not have even been sure that a 'new club' would have got a place in the SFL, let alone, what he believed inevitable at the time, a place in the SPL.

    A new club was never going to get into the SPL, and it didn't because not everyone was prepared to roll over, but before then it was very important to Green to believe that he could get away with the myth, and it was, I suspect, so important that if he didn't believe he could get away with it, he'd have walked away to look for another patsy to scam.


  17. Excellent blog post, BP, that sadly highlights just how corrupt Scottish football was, and still is, over and above Rangers on their own. The 'Old Firm' was more than a mere construct of the SMSM to make the two biggest clubs in Scotland appear even bigger and more important than they already were, it was a cabal designed to further the financial growth of two clubs, quite possibly at the expense of all others, aided and abetted by the SFA and League of the day. The existence of the 'Old Firm' probably kicked 'sporting integrity' into the long grass many decades ago, especially once it got to the stage of both clubs seeing so much value in it they had the name registered as copyright.


  18. Not from me Bogs, not from me!

     

    And thats the morality line that Im referring to also.  Did/does Lawell genuinely believe that TIAR or whatever other target they set themselves 2012 and since would in itself provide some kind of miraculous deliverance from the rapidly deteriorating circumstances in which it is achieved*?

    Sorry, there's not a million miles between that means to an end thinking and the win at all costs EBT mentality that brought us all together in the first place.

    * With apologies to the green side of the argument – Im neither assuming you are already champions on merit, nor tipping you for said position since nothing will see it evaporate quicker ! 


  19. The myth that they were the same club was paramount.  If it was declared as new club with absolutely no history this would have had a devastating efffect on Ibrox fans and would definitely have had repercussions on Scottish Football.. Just look back at the time when stripping titles was mentioned, uproar. This new club myth has always been the main issue. If this was stated back in 2012 and maintained by SFA football would have benefited. To every fan their club’s history is everything. Thus fear is the key concerning our SFA and smsm. In the words of Mr Bowie they were hero’s just for one day.


  20. valentinesclown 29th January 2020 at 12:48

    Scottish football is corrupt and that is a fact.

    oooooooooooooo

    I'm with you for all of that post, but with Smugas on the need for continuity. 50,000+ fans looking for a Rangers to watch at Ibrox every second week were not going to disappear because the team in blue was a new club. Marketing and the SMSM would have seen to that anyway.

    The most generous interpretation I can put on events is that the imminent loss of TV revenues and sponsorship due to the liquidation of RFC as was caused genuine panic and a dive for the 5WA, and to hell with the integrity of the game of professional football in Scotland. As soon as clubs voted to refuse entry to the SPFL and admitted them to Div. 4 however the 5WA became redundant for that purpose, and that was the moment to rip it up and abandon any continuation lie. The terms of the 5WA as applied to Sevco had not been fulfilled by the SPFL, and the other half, the payments of RFC's football debts were never Sevco's to pay anyway.

    The game could have been clean, with no greater financial loss to clubs than was occurring anyway.

    I would like to think that this is now apparent to the game's administrators, but iirc the response has been to reform the rules to allow for a form of mythical franchises to facilitate the same strategy in future. Until all the signatories to the 5WA and others like Petrie go, there is little hope I'm afraid.


  21. Laughing Tim 29th January 2020 at 11:55

    According to Phil, Sevco back in court for Judgement 10:30 today.

    Will the bow break.

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

    I don't think this is a significant judgement, as I believe Justice Persey was only asked to reduce/relieve the injunction on activities by TRFC and Elite that had been imposed during the summer, TRFC and Elite had claimed that it was affecting their ability to carry out their business.

    I have seen tweets claiming that Justice Persey has agreed, at least in part, to this request.

    The request had come at the previous "directions" hearing, which was only to map out the way forward for SDI's claims against TRFC and Elite, and TRFC's counter claim aginst SDI.

    I'd expect the case to run for several months more, although I'm sure that all parties would want it resolved before any new strip is launched for next season.


  22. Bogs Dollox 29th January 2020 at 13:22

    One thing this whole shitshow has confirmed though the suspicions of the diddy clubs that the corrupting of the game was led by the Old Firm with their close working relationship. This led to carve ups (prize money, gate money, voting rights etc) and their ultimate aim to satisfy their greed by leaving for the EPL. Cue a storm of thumbs down!

    ———————–

    BD – Might I suggest that it has confirmed the suspicions held by fans of the diddy clubs, rather than the boards of said clubs most of whom I firmly believe have no issues with the re-emergence of the OF, ergo the Status Quo.

     

     


  23. This appears to be the request that was made at the last hearing, i.e. to have some funds released by Elite to TRFC.

    Image 


  24. smallchange29th January 2020 at 15:22

     

    BD – Might I suggest that it has confirmed the suspicions held by fans of the diddy clubs, rather than the boards of said clubs most of whom I firmly believe have no issues with the re-emergence of the OF, ergo the Status Quo.

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

    Suggestion accepted. 


  25. ……. and this is today’s judgement that allows TRFC to receive the funds held by Elite, (but not have the effect of the injunction reduced).

    https://www.docdroid.net/c7dFwz1/sdir-v-rangers-judgment-on-scope-of-injunction-final.doc

    (12). It follows from the above that Rangers will not be in breach of the Injunction should it seek (whether by court action or otherwise) to recover sums said to be due to it under the Elite/Hummel Agreement. It is, therefore, unnecessary for me to consider the parties’ interesting arguments as to whether the Injunction should be varied.
    (13). The parties should now agree a form of order which gives effect to this judgment/ruling.


  26. ‘Smugas 29th January 2020 at 12:07

    …What they needed was a stadium, facilities and licence all of which they had and a fan base which, no disrespect to the rest of us, any sort of challenge/supposed re-emergence to the top would generate…’

    #########################

    What Charles Green didn’t have was membership of a recognised football association & a league to play in. That was the overarching issue for SevcoScotland. Without professional football at Ibrox, Green had bought an expensive piece of lawn surrounded by 50k seats.

    The craven acceptance by the majority of board members of the SFA, SPL & SFL that there had to be a form of Rangers in the professional game was (and is) the issue. Green did what his kind do: he hyped his product, he gulled some people important to his scheme. He schmoozed those he had to; others would have followed him blindly (and probably did). He was an influencer before the term was in common usage.

    The people responsible for managing governance (and, by default, keeping Green’s version of  hucksterism away from Scottish football) failed in their duty: they failed to recognise that Dr. Green’s Scottish Football Elixir, Which Cures All Ills, was simply snake oil. 

    Chuckie & Co. invented Continuity Rangers FC. (he bought ‘the history’, you know!) to sell season tickets. It worked!


  27. Sorry, their membership was never ever in question. Even the eventual vote re Div 4 entry was by default. There was no worse option.

    I would also be very very surprised if the instigator of the continuity myth was the chap holding a refreshed brand with a cast iron fortified legalistic line between it and £168m of severed debt.  He may have asked for an inch re his IPO but Im fairly certain he was gladly awarded several miles whether he wanted them or not.  His subsequent court testimonies more or less back that up.

    No my personal view is the proud parents of the myth lie much closer to home than that.  


  28. Note to JC re court tomorrow.

    The latest David Whitehouse v the Chief Constable hearing is now an "Unstarred motion" in the Court Rolls.

    There's no point in going along.

    I would guess that DW's legal team has withdrawn its motion to move the case to the Commercial Court, as a result of Lord Doherty's initial take on the matter last week. It will save DW a fair bit in costs as he would probably have lost.


  29. easyJambo 29th January 2020 at 15:31

    '..Note to JC re court tomorrow..'

    ++++++++++

    Thanks for that,eJ.

    I've not been able to find how and why a case relating to compensation for damages for wrongful arrest etc could be dealt with in the Commercial Court.That is, I haven't so far found very much about how the Commercial Court operates except that it appears to be much more informal and sort of leaning towards achieving settlement by discussion, with the judge not 'refereeing' but more actively participating in settling commercial disputes. 

    It's hard to see how being banged up in the pokey could be considered any kind of commercial action!

     


  30. Todays judgment is interesting in that it allows TRFC access to funds they believe they are entitled to under the agrrement with Elite. The problem might be Elite thinking they have been deceived as to the efficacy of any indemnity initially discussed with regard to SDI lurking in the corner.Elite will be wary of SDI next steps and it could be in their interest to privately consult with all parties before releasing any funds at all.I wonder if it is as cut and dried as here you are Dave £2000000 and sorry for the delay.


  31. easyJambo 29th January 2020 at 15:14
    I’d expect the case to run for several months more, although I’m sure that all parties would want it resolved before any new strip is launched for next season
    ………………….
    I was thinking about that senario earlier. What if it is not? New shirts have to be registered with the SFA by June 30.
    What are the rules on a club having no shirts to play in a league?


  32. Ex Ludo

    as i said,smsm nonsense,now defoe injured will morelos be here for friday?not only did slimmer of the year get under his car he also out ran him,surely traynor can come up with better than that mail


  33. Ex Ludo 29th January 2020 at 22:38

    StevieBC@18.32

    Definitely weird. No one can get under a Lamborghini. The ground clearance is 100 millimetres. (I don’t own one, I just googled it)

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

    Must have been his "flat" mate  mail


  34. tony 29th January 2020 at 18:48 stevieBC sounds like another reason for him to go rather than TRFC need to sell

    ____________________-

    All rather dramatic, like a scene out of a cheap 'good guy versus evil drugs baron' movie. 

    If it is a set up, it looks more like one dreamed up by someone somewhat desperate for publicity while sitting around with no opportunity to display his talents, rather than something some devious PR man might come up with.


  35. Not a court date as such, but the sist period in the case below has expired. It will most likely return to the court in the near future, but I'd expect it to be sisted (put on hold) once again, pending the outcome of the Whitehouse, Clark and Grier cases.

    A54/19 Charles Green v The Chief Constable of Police Scotland &c – Jones Whyte Law – Ledingham Chalmers LLP

     


  36. Short statement o'clock

    RANGERS is pleased with yesterday’s Judgment at the High Court and hope it will now lead to Elite clearing the outstanding payments to Rangers referred to in the Judgment.

    It has been necessary to keep these issues confidential pending the Court’s decision.


  37. The Morelos "LamboGate" thing is very odd. Seems utterly disingenuous in as much it doesn't really make sense, and if someone was making it up, they would surely know that.

    After all if you had gone to all the bother of creating that story before phoning some subserviant former employees and hangers-on, instructing them to print the story in the former paper of Record and The Daily Shark Jump, you would most likely – surely – have tested out its plausibility first?

    Perhaps the answer is that someone really was messing with Morelos’s motor. Lets face it, a car of that type (crass and in bad taste to me but not my kids) is more than likely to attract the gaze and closer inspection of passers-by. Perhaps Morelos innocently, and in high dudgeon, recounted the tale of the unwanted vehicular attention when it was overheard by the PR team, desperate to find a pretext for a transfer of their most sell-able asset.

    I use the word desperate because I have heard that loan deals for the likes of Greg Docherty (and Sunderland have a keen interest there) have hit the skids because of the stratospherically high loan fees being requested by the Ibrox Director of Football.

    If a few leave on loan tomorrow, one would be forgiven for inferring that the bluff had not worked, and that Rangers blinked first. And that approach to business is I would suggest a sign of desperation – a desperation that would be instantly relieved if that pretext for the Morelos transfer could be found.

    When Dembele left Celtic last year, the combination of spin against the player AND spending £9m on Edouard only just kept dissatisfied Celtic fans from storming the Parkhead barricades.

    If Morelos goes – especially after the injury to Defoe – Bear on Board action would be almost inevitable.

    Desperation is often the mother of recklessness and stupidity. That's my take on LamboGate


  38. Based on what we know from their latest accounts,

    RIFC/TRFC should have a much clearer picture of how the land lies come Monday morning,

    WRT its financial position – and cashflow through to season end.

    broken heart


  39. EJ

    It appears to me that Elite have withheld payments on the pretext that in their opinion, the injunction proscribes it.

    Rangers go to court thinking the same, but are told they are mistaken. The fact that they only "hope" the payments will be made suggest that new front has opened up – this time with Elite.

    All criticism of Rangers old and new aside, this really doesn't seem like a way to run a business.


  40. I had a look on FF to see the reaction to the latest SDI/TRFC/Elite court judgement.

    I was surprised to read that there is a view, being put out by well informed and connected posters, that all is not well in the relationship between TRFC and Elite and that the latter has been hiding behind the SDI injunction to avoid handing over the cash that TRFC claims is due.

    That view is backed up to some extent by TRFC's statement that they "hope" that Elite will pay up.

    Further concern is raised by the fact that Elite's commercial director is a former SD employee.

    The suggestion is that SDI is exerting some influence over Elite' activities in its relationship with TRFC.

    Developing story? 


  41. I listened with some interest to a report on the volte-face by Irish Government  in now agreeing to 'bail out' the Football Association of Ireland, reversing their previous attitude, expressed as recently as December and earlier this month.

    From the Irish Times:

    https://www.irishtimes.com/sport/soccer/government-to-provide-20m-in-extra-funding-as-part-of-fai-rescue-package-1.4156296

    "The Government is to provide almost €20 million in extra funding to the Football Association of Ireland over the next four years as part of a rescue package announced on Thursday.

    As part of the deal, €7.6 million Government funding will be provided “in recognition of the importance of the continued operation of the Aviva Stadium”. This money will be paid directly to the company operating the stadium, New Stadium DAC, in three instalments and will be repayable from 2024.

    Liabilities of €62 million in the FAI emerged following the restatement of financial accounts for 2016, 2017 and 2018, which were republished late last year. The association has been in the midst of a financial and corporate governance crisis since the emergence of a €100,000 loan from its former chief executive, John Delaney. This sparked a series of controversies, ultimately leading the to the departure of Mr Delaney from the FAI.

    The new Government funding is in addition to the €2.9 the association already receives from the State each year.

    The Cabinet signed off on the rescue package on Thursday after an emergency “incorporeal” meeting. An incorporeal meeting means not all members of the Cabinet will be physically present, with some dialling in by phone.

    It is understood that all sides party to recent rescue discussions have agreed to make concessions. The four parties are the FAI itself, the Government, the association’s bankers, Bank of Ireland, and European football’s governing body, Uefa."


    One of the conditions was that the whole existing Board of the FAI should be changed!

    But my principal interest is in the part that UEFA played, in the sense that there is no real indication of what part they had to play?

    Does  UEFA financially help distressed national associations directly with cash, as well as indirectly influencing governments and banks etc to make monies available to avoid the liquidation of  a national association?


  42. Big Pink 30th January 2020 at 19:18

    EJ

    Great minds etc 🙂

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

    There's a first time for everything LOL!


  43. Hibs' Kamberi to The Rangers FC (on loan)

    STV reporting this evening clubs "locked" in discussions – strange one – why the hell would Hibs help out a competitor – (forgot Ms Dempster was a former season ticket holder @ Ibrox) .


  44. Amazing that the fans were already accepting the fate and that they understood fully the impact and the meaning of what was going down and went down. however, the story and the moonbeams story of the Bobby Ewing moment IMO leaves me feeling the fans are so gullible and so insecure it's laughable and it's amazing how easy fools are parted with their money.


  45. Big Pink 30th January 2020 at 18:25

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

    Some people believe they have an overdue tax bill to HMRC of around £3M.  Not just hopeful Celtic fans at the end of a bar I may add. I have no idea whether it's true, and personally I think it unlikely they would be so crazy given all that happened before. However, they did recently use a Rangers friendly newspaper Editor to get a rather pathetic story out there that liquidation didn't really need to happen. HMRC then took the very unusual step of issuing a very strongly worded rebuttal the next day, and made it public into the bargain. 


  46. Considering RIFC's increasingly perilous financial position, I had always thought that the SFA/SPFL could be the Ibrox club's banker of last​​​​ resort.

    A secretive loan – or advance of prize monies – is nothing compared to what Hampden has enthusiastically concealed in recent years.

     

    …and further to recent e-mail allegations about a certain CEO…

    I wonder if another SPL club could ultimately become the very discreet, banker of last resort for Ibrox – if required?

    indecision


  47. easyJambo 30th January 2020 at 19:13

    '….That view is backed up to some extent by TRFC's statement that they "hope" that Elite will pay up.'

    ++++++++++

    Not directly related to your post, ej, but just on the Persey judgment.

    Am I alone in thinking that there's something of a Brysonism element in the judge's decision?

    TRFC is not caught doing something naughty until after they have done it, but they cannot be punished for the period that elapsed between when they 'done' it and when it was discovered that they had 'done' it!wink

    They breached their deal with SDIR, Elite/Hummel made some money on account of that in a contract that TRFC were not legally capable of being party to

    If I were Elite/ Hummel I'd be inclined to say the contract was null and void, TRFC made a hames of it, and that there would be no legal obligation on me to honour the contract ( and no noblesse oblige on me to honour my part of a contract that the other party knew damn fine he had no power to make!)

    The contract was invalid from the start, and I would tell TRFC to GTF! ( I might accept that I should slide a few bob to SDIR for making money that , unknowingly to me, I had no right to make, but that would be between me and SDIR)


  48. I think it's now way beyond reasonable to assume as fact that the football authorities treated a brand new club as if it was a recently defunct club for the purposes of financial and contractual expediency back in 2012.

    Notwithstanding the defunct club's culpability with regard to unpunished cheating and gaining unwarranted access to potential European prize money that it wasn't qualified to access, isn't the elephant in the room now the question of whether the SFA and SPL/SFL would've avoided 'financial armageddon' by treating a liquidated Celtic in precisely the same way, had the roles been reversed? 

    In other words, however much we may hate the term, the 'Old Firm', it has created and maintained an historical duopoly which has positively promoted sectarianism and divide and made humungous amounts of money out of a pseudo-religious Irish political divide to prolong the hatred and vitriol. 

    Any governing body which genuinely wanted to eradicate this poison could have easily done so at any single point in the past century or so by meaningful points deductions, or ultimately by well deserved banishment or exclusion, but such has been the clamour for maintaining the poison that drives the divide, the square root of diddly squat has happened. Money is what drives football. Money inevitably corrupts. Money is everything – just ask Peter Lawwell.  


  49. Smugas 29th January 2020 at 12:07

    '…

    Sorry JC @ 09.18 I dont buy that.

    Were investors genuinely bothered about the continuity thing?  ….

    ..Anyone with a financial hat on knew and knows damn fine what liquidation is and what it meant.  The current investors are just as aware.'

    ++++++++++++++++++

    I'm coming late to your post, Smugas, and apologise accordingly. 

    I think you are correct in asserting that the general run of people who have money to invest have some street savvy, and that those who in fact were the big investors in RIFC plc are more than street savvy!

    The basic point I was making, and tried to make to the FCA [still haven't had a reply from them to tell me I am wrong!]  is that the IPO prospectus clearly suggested that investors in RIFC plc would be investing in a company which was to make its money from running the most successful football club of all time, Rangers of 140 years of history of sporting achievement.

    It's the FCA's job to ensure that Prospectuses [Prospecti?] are so written as not to be misleading to Joe Public. They know that the sharks in the investment world can look after themselves, but they also know that there are millions of potential (albeit small) investors who can be easily misled by cleverly worded references to success and fortune. 

    And I think that in allowing the RIFC plc IPO Prospectus to be published, the FCA breached their statutory duty  to ensure that that there was nothing misleading in it.

    Possibly because, if they had at the time ( which they probably did not) asked any questions about this news story about 'Rangers' being liquidated they would have been told by the lying SFA that no, no, Rangers were still alive and thriving and that what the Prospectus said was absolutely true and accurate and not at all misleading. [The kind of response the BBC Trust would have given, and the ASA etc etc]

     

     


  50. Highlander 30th January 2020 at 23:28

    '..isn't the elephant in the room now the question of whether the SFA and SPL/SFL would've avoided 'financial armageddon' by treating a liquidated Celtic in precisely the same way, had the roles been reversed? '

    ++++++++++++

    No. We know what happened in fact. 

    Speculation about what might happen in a hypothetical case is irrelevant. 

    But in saying that, the history is that the Bank establishment and Scottish football was ready to see Celtic FC disappear in fairly recent times!

    Whether and to what extent Celtic plc acted unwisely and incorrectly in being party to the lying of the Governance bodies in order to protect their own business future is still not absolutely determined. 

    But there's not a chance that the SFA would have gone to the same fantastic, lying efforts to save them from the effects of Liquidation as our football governance people did in the case of that club of which the wretched knight of the realm, SDM, was the majority shareholder , and which,disgustingly , he palmed off  to CW in order to protect his other business interests, and bugger the loyal fans!

    The elephant in the room is the reluctance of all of Scottish Football to acknowledge that our Governance people have made liars and complete ars.s of themselves in refusing even to investigate certain matters while maintaining an absolute fiction about TRFC being Rangers of 1872.

    The whole thing is now such a mess that one would hope that UEFA would notice that the SFA is an untrustworthy body.

     


  51. John Clark 30th January 2020 at 23:46

    The thing is John , if I may be so bold , is that it didn't state that they were one and the same thing , by my reading . The IPO tells investors all they need to know about RIFC . Then , unasked and out of nowhere  gives a hagiography of a different entity (IL) . It was placed there to deliberately confuse , not business investors , but the gullibles who might buy a share or two , clutching at straws that the death of their club didn't happen . I've been to an AGM . It's still Rangers 1872/73/99 to them because it says Rangers on it , and if you disagree , you are a hater . All the heads will then turn and all the fingers point in your direction . The football authorities know that , and are happy to see your gang take on their gang . Those fans have nothing to lose . It will crush them if they're forced to accept the truth . Then we may see the "Armageddon" that the authorities tried to scare us with . Some p*sh from that enlightened time

    https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/armageddon-how-was-it-for-you-1504208


  52. paddy malarkey 31st January 2020 at 00:32

    '..is that it didn't state that they were one and the same thing , by my reading '

    +++++++++

    I agree.

    It was cleverly done.The 'summary' is all about the most successful club in the world. But even the fine print ( that people might not read) contrives to suggest that RIFC plc owns Rangers of 1872.

    But it is the 'summary' that is key. 

    And in no way should the FCA have let that 'summary' pass without serious question. And, as I say, to whom would they pose the question, other than the lying sods in the SFA!


  53. John Clark 31st January 2020 at 00:46

    I agree , very cleverly done . But instead of the potted history of the dead club they could have put something like

    The  elephant is a dainty bird,
    It flits from bough to bough.
    It makes its nest in a Rhubarb tree,
    And whistles like a cow.

    and it would have had as much relevance to the stuff before in the eyes of the FCA . Charles Green knew who was laying the golden eggs and made sure his goose wasn't cooked .


  54. Big Pink 30th January 2020 at 21:58 https://twitter.com/spflscouting/status/1222969230179565568?s=21 ___________________

     

    That must surely rate amongst the 'cheekiest' of transfer/loan deals ever suggested. 'We'll take your striker to help us win the league, while providing you with no advantage (other than a few pounds you can do not much with), then, if we, by some miracle, have the readies, pay you for him if he turns out to be a success. Or we could give you these magic beans…'

    If, as the tweet suggests, TRFC really have put this deal to Hibs, then it looks more like an effort to appease the fans with a statement such as 'all our efforts to sign new players were stymied by uncooperative clubs' when the window closes and the title charge has not been supplemented with new blood.

    Much as I'd like it to be true, and I don't doubt that somewhere in the Hibs' board's minds the prospect of TRFC not having the readies to pay for Kamberi exists, I very much doubt that anyone at Hibs would be so careless (or boldly honest) to say so, even in private, outside of the confines of the boardroom.


  55. John Clark 31st January 2020 at 00:15

    ………………….

    The elephant in the room is the reluctance of all of Scottish Football to acknowledge that our Governance people have made liars and complete ars.s of themselves in refusing even to investigate certain matters while maintaining an absolute fiction about TRFC being Rangers of 1872.

    …………………….

    They never will John.

    Doncaster shared the prize money due to the then dying club to effectively bribe the non old firm chairmen to back his 11th hour, heavily compromised, version of the planned rescue. 

    And he did this while he and his SFA buddy Regan were telling them (and us) that all Scottish Football faced armageddon if it lost the key commercial entity that was Rangers/Sevco.

    So the reality is Scottish football was bribed and sold for Rangers gold and there was then, and is now, no appetite to ever look back.

    ……………….

     

    Highlander 30th January 2020 at 23:28

    ………………

    Money is what drives football. Money inevitably corrupts. Money is everything – just ask Peter Lawwell.  

    ……………

    I can’t disagree with that.

    Money framed what happened in the run up to Rangers tumbling into an ignominious accountants box where it still resides. 

    Money framed how the SPL and SFA wanted to first keep them alive then bestow all things Rangers to Charlie’s Sevco project.

    Money has framed how The Rangers project has performed since 2012.

     

    And money will frame what happens next both at Rangers and how the SPFL/SFA and all the chairmen react to whatever transpires whether it is at Rangers or indeed elsewhere.

     

     

     


  56. The latest iteration of MASH v GASH, lauded by the SMSM as a triumph for T'Rangers, does not seem to have produced sunshine, rainbows and lollipops down Govan way. What looks like a simple toe-in-the-water application by T'Rangers to ensure receipt of monies from Elite does not fall foul of an Injunction has quickly escalated into talk of the ever-popular boycott/protest/statement/march. Views range from there is no problem; the Court has spoken; Elite have put a cheque in the post, through Elite are not paying; Elite will have to be pursued in Court to, my favourite if only for the irony and lack of self awareness explosion, MASH will buy/has bought Elite; some creative accounting will occur; Elite suffers one of those insolvency events; T'Rangers get tuppence in the pound; Elite carries on as T'Elite. Stranger things have happened.

    Meanwhile MASH v GASH trundles on threatening the record of Jarndyce v Jarndyce although the Duff & Phelps/BDO Administration/Liquidation might drag on longer than both.

    LamboGate may be explained someday but if it turns out to be other than as reported there is every chance that when Frodo is charged with wasting police time the charge is rescinded by the SFA.

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