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.

2230 COMMENTS


  1. finnmccool 25th March 2020 at 13:58

    '…Odd that this was announced nearly a week ago but has not been mentioned in the MS media.'

    ………………

    Unless the 'government' sources of info have been hacked, and nobody has noticed after 4 days or so ( which is highly unlikely), the assumption must be that that announcement  is stating factual truth . But perhaps the classification of diseases is so highly technical  that not being 'high-consequence infectious' does not mean that the elaborate measures now being urged on us are not appropriate.

    In which case, the media probably have been briefed not to publish the announcement for fear that the public might dismiss the Government's actions as unnecesssary………

    I read the 'Swiss doctor's stuff,and could feel myself hoping and wishing it was the truth! Reading the announcement by Public Health England kind of emotionally encourages that feeling!

    Not yet to the point of stopping being 'self-isolating', mind you. 

    But I really think that Public Health update should not have been published in th way it was.


  2. Yeah Finn, that was one of the daily updates in Gogs' link above detailing an alternative narrative to that which is being reported.


  3. Mentioning Gogs' link prompts me to post the thoughts I had when I saw the 'evidence' against the prevailing narrative being gathered so succinctly. I don't feel I'm particularly conspiracy-minded, but I AM tended not to trust power-wielding authorities, so seeing the reported numbers infected/deaths in the early days, I didn't trust all the advice re self isolation/lockdown as it seemed an almighty overreaction to the small numbers I was seeing reported.

    I'm not trying to make light of the virus and, very worryingly, this might make me sound a bit like Donald Trump (!), but the questions raised by Gogs' link – specifically that of numbers reported as "dying from Coronavirus" versus those "dying with Coronavirus" (a very important distinction) and that of "excess (or additional) mortality" simply aren't being asked! Even when I started to get a little worried when I saw the reported numbers growing so much, I still worried about the terminology used in the advice e.g. stay home, enforce compliance etc. I do genuinely still worry that this is some sort of social experiment to see how far the powers that be can impose their will on a population by utilising (unfounded?) fear as a control mechanism. If it is found that a population will readily acquiesce in the face of an unseen threat that can be reported as a pandemic, is it really such a big step to e.g. imposing a curfew (or worse) on London's teens to prevent the high number of knife-related murders?

    I realise that does make me sound a bit of a conspiracy theorist so in trying to rationalise this thinking, the best I can do is to assess the pros and cons of a governments scaremongering.

    Pros

    1. The experiment lets them know how pliable we are in the face of a potential/imagined threat.

    2. They don't get found out – if deaths don't outstrip the norm, the argument can be made that the actions taken controlled the virus as they planned. I.e."Oh yes there WAS a killer virus!"

    3. Seems to allow transfer of wealth from poorer to richer e.g. via Govt handouts to business in compensation – Amazon? Virgin? – which the taxpayer will ultimately fund.

    4. There is a chance that they are doing nasty stuff under cover of Coronavirus. E.g. Hong Kong protests stopped, Brexit criticism stopped, immigration debate off the table etc

    Cons

    1. The experiment highlights their lack of preparedness e.g. lack of ventilators, protective gear etc

    2. Lack of ICU beds is a clear indication of their lack of investment in the NHS.

    3. Governments are being made to look incapable (albeit with some slack cut for the apparent unprecedented nature of the issue). Latest example today – "All hotels to close." "Shit, what about all those homeless families housed there by councils with no housing stock?!?!"

    4. Economies worldwide are absolutely tanking, which on the face of it is a Con. (Is there a chance, though, that this could be a Pro for Governments? Some people are suggesting that it is causing a total Economic reset which Govts can blame on the Pandemic rather than their irresponsible policies.)

    That's as far as my wee brain can take this, I think. Apologies if it's too political, but with no football to talk about…..!

    I'm still a little worried that we're being played here, so I'd be glad for any logical comment to see if my mind can be set to rest.


  4. finnmccool 25th March 2020 at 13:58

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    gogs

    You may be interested to know that as of March 19th The Advisory Committee on Dangerous Pathogens (ACDP) has posted online their EXPERT opinion that COVID-19 should no longer be classified as an HCID.

    ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

    Yeh thanks, that’s actually in the updates in that link I posted, just one of many pieces of info from the article that should be wider know I would say

    Good news is reports of a home testing kit available ‘in a few days’
    That will be a game changer, everyone tested, these that have it, isolation, these that have had it or are free of it, back to some semblance of normality

    And nawlite , your reply hit home to me, I’m miles away from the conspiracy rabbit hole, I feel similar to you, I actually went to this site to see what I could disprove and it turns out, not that much!!!
    I do think the simplest explanation is still that Governments are winging it and no one wants to be the one to say it’s all ok when it’s not, so mass lockdown and then deal with the consequences.
    The ability to increase surveillance is more of a useful by product than a reason in the first place I’d say .


  5. Hi John

    The link to the Government website defines which diseases are HCID. Worth a look.

    The government's actions are a suspicious overreaction. Why were the same actions not taken for the swine flu pandemic? A much more virulent and nasty virus still classed as HCID.

    In Scotland we rightly moan at the inability of journalists to ask hard pertinent questions. The GB MSM is 100 times worse. 

    I'm a data scientist. Data talks. Not mummy and daddy going over the same claptrap on Sky news. I like to ask simple questions. How many people have been tested? What was the % of positive results? How many go on to develop symptoms? How many develop mild symptoms? How many need to be treated in an ICU. What is the mortality rate? What is the recovery rate? What is the age ranges of those who unfortunately die? Did they have other diseases?

    I could go on. But these are the simple questions. It's our job as citizens to ask them before we allow our economy to tank with resultant social breakdown.

     


  6. Gogs, the worrying thing is that (unfortunately!) Trump is the only one in power saying it!! ("Over by Easter") and because he is such a dummy on most other issues, he is being laughed at /ignored on this. Even if he believes what he is saying and turns out to be right, he is still going along with the prevailing narrative of lockdown etc.


  7. Two years ago winter deaths in Scotland were at an all time high. This was attributed to 'flu. After all this is over it will be a useful comparison. Lower/same rate this year, we all played our part in self isolating? Higher rate, the measures taken were ineffective? Lies,damn lies and statistics.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-45876204


  8. The DR online has a list of 5 players valued at £15.5 million which they reckon would improve a team that will struggle to exist beyond the next payday! Apart from giving me an opportunity to chuckle it has got me thinking about the impact Covid-19 will have on the game.

    I do wonder what the effect will be on the transfer market and would suggest that there is real possibility that clubs, even the more financially secure, will greatly reduce playing squads. This may result in a reduction in transfer fees except for the very top players and even in that market I wouldn't be surprised to see a reduction in values as sponsorship will be reduced.

    There may be an opportunity for some well run clubs to improve their playing squads. This is not necessarily much different from how it's always been but could be on a scale we've never experienced.

    Just few thoughts from me but I am interested to hear the views of other contributers. 


  9. adam812

    Totally agree about the value of players in what will certainly be a depressed transfer market. Crazily, we're still reading about 40 and 50 million values (throughout Europe!!).

    Forget about that – I reckon Edouard's price will be around 25 mill (Morelos 5-8 mill). Young Hickey (not so l;ong ago rated at 5-8 mill, should fetch around 1mill

    At least the pandemic will bring economic realism to what has been an increasingly crazy world of transfers.


  10. I'm 68 years old and have ischaemic heart disease, I'm in pretty good health now but if I contract the Coronavirus and, as a result, have a second cardiac arrest, will it matter to those who would downplay the seriousness of the pandemic what my primary cause of death was? Will they say 'it's alright, he didn't actually die of the virus, he'd probably have been gone within the next 10 years, anyway'?

    If thousands of us die will it be alright as long as it wasn't from a more serious virus?

    I read that report that gave statistics showing that virtually all the deaths from the virus in Italy involved the old and already ill and, for a moment I thought, 'oh well, it's not so bad then'. Then I thought, how f**king callous of me, for it's not alright to accept deaths just because those dying are much older than me or already more seriously ill, for they have just as much right to live as anyone else.

    Regardless of what is done from here on in to stem the tide of deaths, hundreds, probably thousands, will die, perhaps not from the virus, itself, but as a result of contracting it. I wouldn't want to be one of those who live for another 40 or 50 years in the knowledge that they preferred that their Government did less, rather than more, than was necessary to ensure it reduced the number of deaths as much as possible regardless of what section of society the majority of deaths came from, and regardless of how inconvenient it's methods to control it were for those most likely to survive.

    There is also the thought to be considered that if the UK, having had months to prepare for this supposedly not so deadly virus, can't be more ready than it is, what are our chances when the type of virus that COVID-19 is apparently less serious than hits? If anyone feels that the current efforts are a bit OTT think on that for a moment.

    If it helps, think on it as a dry run for the time a pandemic hits the young and healthy just as much as the old and not so healthy. But we are not controlling it, we are nowhere near controlling it, and we don't know what, if any, lasting effects there will be or even if we can eventually kill it off.


  11. Allyjambo 25th March 2020 at 17:08

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

    The very old and very ill die, naturally, of a range of progressive illnesses and more immediate events. Those more immediate events can be sudden, such as a stroke or coronary thrombosis, or by the onset of a short term illness, such as Covid-19, seasonal flu, or even the common cold which develops into pneumonia, ultimately causing death.

    One of my friends recently lost his mother, aged 92. The doctor had advised the family that once you get into your 90s, then half of those will not live to celebrate their next birthday.  I don’t think the death rate is as high as 50% for a 90 year old, but if you use 30% as the death rate for someone in their 90s and 50% for those in their 100s, you can illustrate the progression in life expectancy for a sample of 10,000 90 year olds as below.

    Age  Survivors
    90    10000
    91    7000
    92    4900
    93    3430
    94    2401
    95    1681
    96    1176
    97    824
    98    576
    99    404
    100    282
    101    141
    102    71
    103    35
    104    18
    105    9
    106    4
    107    2
    108    1
    109    1
    110    0


  12. AJ, I hope you accept my post wasn't about 'they'll die anyway'. Obviously, it's a terrible thing if any elderly person with pre-existing conditions dies because of the addition of common flu or Coronavirus or anything else.

    I'm simply trying to reconcile in my own mind why governments are reacting this way to Coronavirus when they don't to common flu. I'm coming round to the view that Cv is not going to cause 'additional mortality' over flu-related deaths in recent years. I know that's easier for me to say than for those charged with public health powers but no one seems to be asking if there is real evidence to support the rush to emergency powers. If you do, you're accused of not taking it seriously (I am) or not caring that people may die (I do).

    As you say, if this leads to fewer flu/virus-related deaths in future, then great news.


  13. ICT PRESS RELEASE.

    Good for them 👍

    Caley Jags Manager Robbo was at the wheel yesterday as he was out and about the Inverness area with Assistant Scott Kellacher and some of the 1st Team delivering some of the ICT TogetherNess shopping packages to pensioners who are in isolation like the rest of the country at the moment.

    Over 100 households have been supplied with shopping bags thanks to the kind donations of Caley Jags fans and local businesses and families.

    Goalkeeper Mark Ridgers, striker James Keatings and Robbo delivered to some very surprised but appreciative recipients of the #ICTTogetherNess initiative.

    (Ends)


  14. nawlite 25th March 2020 at 18:21

    Nawlite,

    I deliberately didn't aim my post at anybody, just at the notion that these type of statistics are helpful at the time the tragedy is unfolding. I am sure that these statistics will be very helpful in forming future strategies and for medical students in their studies, but right now they will save no one, for they do not point to a way to stop the virus spreading. 

    At this moment in time I care not for how this compares with previous epidemics/pandemics other than in lessons to be learned on how to stop it or reduce it's harm, but would say that if the effort that is being made across the world is so much greater than in these earlier cases, imagine how much worse the Coronavirus statistics would now be if those efforts were not being made.

    My attitude will always be to save lives first, then study the results and argue whether or not the financial cost and inconvenience was worth it later.

    In my opinion there can be little doubt that there would have been many more cases and deaths without the efforts that have been made, and many less if the efforts had been made quicker (where possible) and more robust from the start.


  15. Allyjambo 25th March 2020 at 19:12

    EDIT

    "At this moment in time I care not for how this compares with previous epidemics/pandemics other than in lessons to be learned on how to stop it or reduce it's harm, but would say that if the effort that is being made across the world is so much greater than in these earlier cases, imagine how much worse the Coronavirus statistics would now be if those efforts were not being made."

    —-

    This to me would be the core of the current debate. The answer from some quarters is we don't know, whereas the necessity of ice rink to morgue conversion in Spain suggests it might indeed be far worse.


  16. gunnerb 25th March 2020 at 19:30

    It used to be a common phrase on here, and hopefully will be again, that we are living in interesting times, but for now, sadly, I feel we are living in scary times, very scary times, indeed.


  17. My opinion , and it is only that , is that when Western governments looked at Wuhan and saw the resources  and the social control required to neuter the virus they simply sht the bed . There was no way they could close and lock down the affected areas in the same manner as the Chinese Communist Party did , so they didn't . They were happy to treat it like a normal flu outbreak . Once it hit Europe and they saw the carnage that was being inflicted on the populations of affected countries , they sht the bed again and imposed the restrictions we currently labour under . The hope must be to totally eliminate the virus world-wide so that we don't have a second coming in the winter , which could decimate populations in affected countries . So if it dies out in a month we should isolate for a month until it does . I hope it does and the loss of life ceases . The world has changed  because of this emergency and I don't see it going back to as was . ( It's also my opinion that the Government of this country should have locked down London and the South East a month ago to spare the rest of the country some grief ).


  18. Paddymalarkey@21.50

    The virus in London may in time develop the same way it has in New York and that would be appalling. My son who lives in London has been working from home for the last 10 days on the instructions of his company, a US  law firm. He put himself in lock down a week ago. I don’t know if this fits in with the conspiracy stuff but I’m glad he did it. Stay safe.


  19. Ex Ludo

    Emergency Planning Officers have worked on steps to be taken in the event of incidents like a pandemic for many years to make sure contingency measures can be quickly put in place. 

    Just a few years ago I attended a session where we looked at what would be the response if one of the many large cruise ships which visit a number of Scottish ports got into serious difficulties.

    There was reassurance that modern ship design and facilities on board meant that a Titanic type disaster was unlikely but we still had to consider the scenario whereby all passengers and crew had to leave the ship. Even if this could be done in an orderly fashion sorting out 5000 plus people in a Highland town it was a huge challenge!

    What I gained from the session was that resources would be available from all the emergency and voluntary services so that no one should be overwhelmed. 

    The planners have to prepare for the worst though hopefully the measures introduced will lessen the impact of the pandemic which is close to the biggest nightmare for them. 

    Purely based on the numbers we can see how some parts of the country have to be ready sooner. 

    We will get through this though sadly many will suffer a lot of hardship. 

    As an aside I was lucky enough to be able to buy a pack of chicken breast the other day. Having realised the pack was leaking slightly I warned the checkout operator to be careful. I couldn't stop myself from commenting how different it used to be when all you had to worry about was getting salmonella poisoning! 

     


  20. Charles.

    Apparently.

    I absolutely abhor the MSM's slight that his plight is headline.

    We are the front pages. 

     


  21. Adam812@00.01

    Interesting that you highlight cruise ships, Most businesses negatively affected by the virus will eventually recover over time. It is however the end of the line for these floating towns. I can’t imagine anyone in those companies key demographics getting back on board once the present crisis is finished. I’m glad I bought an old camper van when I retired and before anyone asks it’s still winterised on a friend’s farm. Stay safe.


  22. Allyjambo 25th March 2020 at 17:08

     

    Well said.

    This move towards a "they would have died anyway" mentality is stunning.

    The social distancing and self isolation is designed to help people in the vulnerable groups. Not the people who would see it as a bit of a cold and be fine in a few days.

    The vulnerable groups are also not just the elderly, they include many people, who whilst they are going to die anyway (we all are) would hope that it is several decades away from them. 

    The suggestion that this is an over-reaction, or some sort of social engineering experiment, or indeed a move towards a totalitarian state seems a bit off to me.

    It's trying to save lives. 


  23. I note that some of the biggest clubs in the world are currently in talks with their players to explore wage cuts given the current coronavirus situation.

    Good to see Scottish clubs like Hearts and Aberdeen being quick off the mark in terms of recognizing a potential problem and looking at ways to ensure their clubs future. No doubt others will follow.

    Tax dodging EBTer Kris Boyd will of course now be changing his tune regards the actions of Ms Budge and want to see T'Rangers name up their so they can have headlines associating them with the likes of Barcelona, Juventus and  Bayern!!!


  24. Ex Ludo 

    Whilst I agree that in the short term the cruise industry is likely to take a hit I am not so sure about in the long term especially in our part of the world.

    The ships coming into the Highlands come from UK and European ports so all will have the advantage of probably being able to guarantee a return to your point of departure. I can imagine confidence might return to this market from departure countries but people may think twice about flying somewhere to join a cruise. 

    The port of Invergordon had an estimated 180 000 visitors last year providing a valuable boost to the Highland economy so I am sure efforts will be made to restart when safe to do so. 

    Not everyone welcomed the huge influx of tourists because, for example, service buses could be swamped leaving no space for locals to travel to their work. That said last year extra buses were provided on cruise ship days to lessen the problem. 

    Campervans are another story all together. I guess there it will be a while before I see a steady stream of Italian vans passing by or 20 German vans in Morrisons supermarket car park all at the same time! 

    To get back to football the drop in income that many will experience may well affect attendances but perversely may provide an opportunity too. If costs are reduced we just may get even more people going to matches. Clubs will have to be smart and not try to be too greedy when The Beautiful Game returns. 

     

     

     


  25. Slight deviation, but just realised that both TRFC and the royal family have something in common: crap PR management.

    TRFC we all know about: the unqualified Traynor now being replaced by another unqualified individual, (who also comes with assorted, negative baggage).

    The royal family has had its own PR 'missteps' around Harry & Meghan, Prince Andrew – and now Prince Charles' PR shot to the foot for travelling, with an entourage, and then jumping the queue to get a test for him, his wife, and presumably his entourage?

    Did nobody think to mention that travelling to Scotland during an imposed lockdown might not look too good, you know… from a PR perspective…?

    Mibbees they just don't need decent PR management then?TRFC and the royal family might have a similar, arrogant mindset: WATP and everyone else can just bugger off?  indecision


  26. ‘StevieBC 26th March 2020 at 11:12

    Did nobody think to mention that travelling to Scotland during an imposed lockdown might not look too good, you know… from a PR perspective…?’

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

    Nothing to do with ‘a PR perspective’, I think: geographically distancing the Royal Family at this time is (probably) part of pre-arranged disaster planning. 

    As an aside, the Duke of Rothesay is now fairly local to Scotland’s only (I think) adult ECMO machine, which is located in Aberdeen. Strange that…


  27. wottpi 26th March 2020 at 11:00

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

    No club will be immune from a financial hit. Some will have very wealthy owners who are able to pick up the deficit, but everything is relative to incomings and outgoings, no matter the size of the club. 

    As for Kris Boyd, it amazes me that the Scottish Media are willing to put him up as someone whose opinion should be valued. I'm not fully aware of what he said about Anne Budge and the action she has taken, but I do know who I would trust to financially manage a business between the the two of them!


  28. Here is a small distraction for anyone who wants to think about something else at the moment. I’ll post the answers up later on for those interested. No googling….

    1. Name the only Scottish club who has sold a player for a world record fee

    2. True or false: Aberdeen are the last team to beat Real Madrid in the final of any major European club competition?

    3. Can you name team that has the third most Scottish Cups victories?

    4. Which Scottish footballer performed twice in the same episode of Top of the Pops?

    5. Name the only Scottish club who has bought a player for a world record fee?


  29. Interesting story in today's sun (I know, I know)

     

    on the 19th Feb Atlanta played Valencia in the CL.

    Atalanta, who play in Bergamo (Europe's epicentre), deemed the stadium not big enough for the anticipated crowd and moved the game to the San Siro in Milan.

    The crowd was over 50,000.

    Spain and Italy are the world's most affected countries.

    Anyone even contemplating a return of any sporting event anytime soon belongs in the same padded cell as "the Donald".

    HS

     

    Ps just noticed that Valencia's badge has an animal on it …….a bat


  30. Jingso.Jimsie 26th March 2020 at 11:24

    ‘…geographically distancing the Royal Family at this time is (probably) part of pre-arranged disaster planning.’

    ……………….

    How far I have travelled since the days of my boyhood when , reading the novels of Emma Magdolna Rozália Mária Jozefa Borbála “Emmuska” Orczy de Orci  [ Baroness Orczy to you!] featuring ‘The Scarlet Pimpernel”, I actually sympathised with ‘les aristos’ who were saved from the guillotine  by the said  Scarlet Pimpernel, aka Sir Percy Blakeney

    Marchons, marchons……..Vive la republique! A la lanterne les aristos!broken heart

     

     


  31. easyJambo 26th March 2020 at 13:55

    Beat me to it EJ. A pretty comprehensive statement, as you say, and probably a fair indication of how things are at most clubs so worth the lengthy read for not only Hearts supporters. She fairly puts the ex-players in the media in their place with their made up and imaginary stories – or is it just their wishful thinking for a club that managed to come out of administration – alive?


  32. fishnish 26th March 2020 at 12:53

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/52047550
     

    well… the important teams get £400k each, twice what the diddy teams get.

    And who cares about those in lower leagues?

    we know our place.  angel

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

    I’m sure that TRFC’s position on this is that no title can be awarded because of sporting integrity considerations regarding an incomplete season. However, I’m sure that they would want the financial distribution to be based on current positions. There is no financial integrity in that, if you subscribe to the sporting integrity argument.

    TRFC wasn’t guaranteed second place either, with Motherwell and Aberdeen both capable of finishing above them, so why should TRFC be rewarded with the 2nd place payment if all the games haven’t been played.

    Indeed, you could take the argument further if the season is declared “null & void”. In that situation, the application of sporting integrity and financial integrity should require an equal distribution of funds between all premiership clubs. In that scenario, then who should the SFA put forward as Scotland’s representatives in UEFA competitions for next season? Draw lots?


  33. easyJambo 26th March 2020 at 13:55

    That is a very good statement, given the current circumstances.


  34. easyJambo 26th March 2020 at 13:55

    A pretty comprehensive statement from Ann Budge on the financial issues facing Hearts and other clubs.

    https://www.heartsfc.co.uk/news/article/chairmans-statement-march-26th

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

    As upthehoops said re Anne Budge compared to a former footballer “….I do know who I would trust to financially manage a business between the the two of them!”

    To me this Hearts statement is exactly the kind of message and setting out of actions that you would want to see from your Club.

    The apparent reaction from staff also seems appreciative of the honesty shown and thought out planning that very much takes their needs into account.

    Ready Anne Budge’s statement I became strengthened in my view that there should be no relegation from Scottish leagues this season. Clubs have enough to deal with without that added burden. 
    An early statement on that specific point could be made now and allow clubs to sell season tickets for next year to aid their cashflow.

    Scottish Football needs strong and honest management at this critical time.

     

     


  35. Scottish football needs more Anne Budges.

    Scottish football also needs to reorganize so that the future model is sustainable and based on the football community as a whole and not just two Glasgow based clubs and their fixations with using their uniquely supercharged scale to win what are in reality  meaningless silver pots to allow their fans to continually re-enact whatever it is that they re-enact when one wins and one loses. 
     

     


  36. What chance a "TRFC players offer to take pay cut" type headline in the not too distant future ? Grab the moral high ground .


  37.      I don't understand the logic of paying out an early purse based on the current league positions. 

             For example, coming last in the Prem attracts a dividend of £1.125m. A Prem club will not be receiving an over-payment, if that was to be paid out now, regardless of where they finish. (Or deemed to have finished). Maximum early payment as stands is less than half that.

              As a rule of thumb it could be argued that clubs who finish lowest, not only are in most need operating with a lower budget, but relatively speaking, per £ received, it would do more good. It would be of more benefit to the club…..More would keep their jobs.

         A sliding scale from bottom to top, as opposed to top to bottom,  would to me make more sense, and prove more value to smaller budget clubs.  

    https://spfl.co.uk/news/spfl-prize-pot-reaches-25m


  38. Corrupt official 26th March 2020 at 16:29

    The payments to clubs are phased over the season, with a relatively large payment in August, a smaller one in December, another small one in April (once the top/bottom six are determined), then a final payment reflecting the finishing positions in the league. 


  39. Ms Budge doesn't miss her targets. Pity she isn't capable of wearing the No 9 shirt!!

    ….for the sake of our supporters I need to address the enormous amount of ill-informed and self-opinionated commentary coming from some sections of the media at the moment (in particular from The Sun and their usual pundits). 

    Since announcing the proposed implementation of a substantial wage cut across all staff, coaches and players, the media pundits have been scathing in their criticism of apparent financial mis-management; clear indications of panicking; and the very suggestion that players should take a cut in wages is clearly a concept they don’t even begin to grasp.  (Possibly, because so many of them are themselves, former players.)  Fortunately, our players do not appear to have this same sense of entitlement. 


  40. Wottpi above

    Kris Boyd – could you contact Ann Budge to discuss this and the morality of your EBT?


  41. easyJambo 26th March 2020 at 16:50 

    Corrupt official 26th March 2020 at 16:29

    ————————————

    The payments to clubs are phased over the season, with a relatively large payment in August, a smaller one in December, another small one in April (once the top/bottom six are determined), then a final payment reflecting the finishing positions in the league.

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

        Cheers EJ, I wasn't aware of that, but I still feel the same principle should apply. £400K could keep a couple of clubs ticking over and buy them some time.. It will not make a dent in the wage bill at Celtic Park..


  42. tony 26th March 2020 at 18:33 he should contact his brain before speaking

    _______________–

    More chance of contacting Elvis than there is of Kris Boyd contacting his brain.


  43. Cluster One – things might not be quite as clear cut as The Sun seems to think :

    “For Rangers season ticket holders however, the club state that they will not be held liable in the event that games are cancelled.

    The Ibrox club’s season ticket terms and conditions for this season state: “The club, in conjunction with the relevant football authorities, reserve the right to alter the published date and/or kick-off time of any fixture at any time.

    “The club cannot accept any liability for any expense incurred even in the event that the match is cancelled.””

    So fans are not covered “for any expense incurred even in the event that the match is cancelled” – but that does not clearly state that they are also not due a refund for matches paid for but cancelled.

    In fact, as the expenses aspect has been singled out for exclusion from the club liability does that not in effect imply that a refund would be due for the value of matches cancelled? Otherwise that too would be similarly clearly excluded.

    Surely this is a straightforward case of a vendor failing to provide goods or services purchased?

    I also recall that in the event of ambiguity in a contract the judgement/benefit is usually given against the party who drew up the contract.

    Scottish Football needs a strong Arbroath.

     


  44. I should also have said "Have they not suffered enough?"

    Scottish Football needs some good 'no win, no fee' legal services. 


  45. Good job the EBT type schemes are now illegal.  Imagine people only got 80% of declared earnings in benefits from the government.  mail


    1. Name the only Scottish club who has sold a player for a world record fee.

    2. True or false: Aberdeen are the last team to beat Real Madrid in the final of any major European club competition?

    3. Can you name team that has the third most Scottish Cups victories?

    4. Which Scottish footballer performed twice in the same episode of Top of the Pops?

    5. Name the only Scottish club who has bought a player for a world record fee?

    For anyone interested here are the answers to the questions I posted earlier. Hope everyone is staying safe and well. 

    1. Answer: In 1914 Hearts sold Percy Dawson to Blackburn for a record £2,500. Adjusted for inflation that would be £241,690 in today’s money.

    2. Answer: True. Real Madrid have won all 9 of the finals since then. The UEFA Cup in 1984-85, 1985-86 and the Champions League in 1997-98, 1999-2000, 2001-2002, 2013-14, 2015-16, 2016-17, 2017-18. I’m not including the Super Cup as a ‘major’, with apologies to all Aberdeen fans.

    3. Answer: Queens Park have won it ten times. The first one in 1873-74 and the last of them in 1892-93.

    4. Answer: In 1982 Steve Archibald sang with the Scotland squad on their World Cup song and with Spurs for their FA Cup final song.

    5. Answer: In 1922 Falkirk paid a world record £5000 to West Ham Utd for Syd Puddefoot. In today’s money that would be £275,040.


  46. Finloch 26th March 2020 at 14:39

    Scottish football needs more Anne Budges.

    Scottish football also needs to reorganize so that the future model is sustainable and based on the football community as a whole and not just two Glasgow based clubs and their fixations with using their uniquely supercharged scale to win what are in reality  meaningless silver pots to allow their fans to continually re-enact whatever it is that they re-enact when one wins and one loses. 

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

     

    Agreed. Best post on SFM since its inception.


  47. Cluster One 26th March 2020 at 19:30

    Stand by for a club 72 statement WE WOULD HAVE WAVED THE FEES ANYWAY.

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

       What?…..Nae cries of "Onerous contract". mail…..I would love to see the annual photos at the rusty ticket office, …. of bears all brandishing a shiny pound………

         Charlie Chuckles could hand them out cups of tea from the kitchen windae of his French chateau, as social distancing is enforced. mail

         "Loyal follow followers set new world record queue length", will make a great headline. 

       Wonder how many bears will now be wishing they bought their ST using a credit card?……. Errrrrrrrrrr………….Oooops !.


  48. I guess that the longer there is a footy hiatus, the paying customers could be less inclined to pay the prices when normal service resumes?

     

    We’re all going to feel the pain from this crisis – and hopefully it will just be financial pain.

     

    For me, paying >£60 to take the wife to a home league game is just not going to happen.  That choice of expenditure is simply going to drop right down my list of priorities.

    Even before the crisis I did choose to decline buying tickets around this price for a midweek game, against a ‘lower level’ opponent: I just thought the pricing was excessive/greedy.

     

    Mibbees this is also an opportunity for the SFA/SPFL and clubs to review ticket pricing generally?


  49. Hate to be a prophet of doom and gloom but if things pan out, numbers go down,  however there is still no vaccine, but restrictions start to be eased or lifted, I can’t help thinking the virus would strike again.  We might face another lock down.

    A season ticket might not be a priority for most until there is more certainty. 

    Maybe it’s just me being negative.

     

     


  50.  Ashley has apologised to the 'Government' and generously offered the use of his fleet of lorries to the NHS and other public services in the struggle against covid-19, after the nonsense of his 'essential services' claim as grounds for remaining open for the sale of gym-ware.

    He is not alone among successful business tycoons in recent years to make a complete bollsup in his PR. In his case, perhaps, not quite such an incredibly counter-productive  bollsup as TRFC made the other week with their PR appointment. 

    What is the character flaw in such people that is able to reduce their undoubted intellectual capacities to a moronic level?

    Ashley has at least apologised (maybe choking with rage, maybe genuinely, who can tell?).

     


  51.        Jimbo I doubt anybody can accuse you of being too negative, as even "The Experts", are unsure of what lies ahead and are often contradictory, but the important thing is to find the positives.

         In a sweepstake I would hope to draw Scotland, as the first country to come up with a vaccine or usable medicine….We will fight tooth and nail to retain our right to drink and smoke ourselves to death, and hell mend anything that stands in our way…….Nemo me impune Lacessit.  


  52. John Clark 27th March 2020 at 11:40 Ashley has apologised to the 'Government' and generously offered the use of his fleet of lorries to the NHS and other public services in the struggle against covid-19, after the nonsense of his 'essential services' claim as grounds for remaining open for the sale of gym-ware. He is not alone among successful business tycoons in recent years to make a complete bollsup in his PR. In his case, perhaps, not quite such an incredibly counter-productive bollsup as TRFC made the other week with their PR appointment. What is the character flaw in such people that is able to reduce their undoubted intellectual capacities to a moronic level? Ashley has at least apologised (maybe choking with rage, maybe genuinely, who can tell?).

    _______________-

    I think, in fact I am sure, that the answer to this question, and many others regarding the incredibly rich, is greed.


  53. It appears that Aberdeen have been prudent in effecting insurance that included pandemic cover . Unfortunately their insurer seems to be pulling the plug on that. Perhaps somehow invoking force majeure?    

    Whilst not yet talking about wage cuts they are looking at things in depth and trying to plan accordingly. The need for early clarity from the football authorities is an issue they want to see addressed. They seem to think that UEFA can play a large part in that by declaring domestic leagues must end by a certain date and thus allow planning to take place over when next season might start.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/52056108

     

     


  54. Corrupt official 27th March 2020 at 11:43

    …We will fight tooth and nail to retain our right to drink and smoke ourselves to death, and hell mend anything that stands in our way…

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

    Absolutely, CO!

    Smoking is just a filthy habit.

    …but I do enjoy the occasional swally… 

    Got to have one vice. no

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