One, er, Two Rules to Rule Them All

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Why the SPFL Decision to Deduct Points from Clyde FC For An administrative Error is Raising Eyebrows In Social Media and Encouraging Dancing Around The Lord Nimmo Smith Elephant in the Main Stream.

It was reported in the news that Clyde have been deducted points for fielding an ineligible player in two matches, news that has raised supporter eyebrows when a comparison is made with SFA and the then SPL treatment of ten years of imperfect players registration by the then Rangers FC and caused a bit of dancing in main stream media around the LNS Elephant.

When the existence of side letters that formed part of a players remuneration contract was revealed in March 2012, it prompted an investigation by the SPL into the eligibility to play football of players who had been provided side letters by Rangers FC that indemnified them from any loss should the ebt schemes , through which their main remuneration flowed, be deemed unlawful by HMRC.

The issue for the SPL then was were those players properly registered under SPL rules?

The common belief held until then being that incorrect registration made a player ineligible to play and any game an incorrectly registered player played in was void:

  1. Presumably on the basis the errant club had gained an on field advantage from incorrect registration and/or
  2. to act as a deterrent to clubs to deliberately conceal full registration details from the football authorities.

The result of games in which such a player played was treated as a 0-3 defeat and the 4 points gained deducted and 3 points each granted to their opponents.

To get answers the SPL, after seeking evidence of side letters accompanying any type of EBT from Rangers FC, established the Lord Nimmo Smith (LNS) Commission to identify if a breach of registration rules had occurred and what were the consequences in sanction terms.

It is interesting therefore to compare the following from the LNS Commission in respect of sanctions against Rangers FC for a breach covering ten years of incorrect registration with the sanctions against both Clyde FC over 2 games and Hearts over one game, based on what Lord Nimmo Smith said in his findings at 107 and 108 of his Decision.
Findings that 7 years later have caused social media eyebrows to raise to Roger Moore levels because of apparent contradictions arising from the justifications given for a financial sanction only in the LNS Decision.

LNS Decision basis 107 /108

[107]
We nevertheless take a serious view of a breach of rules intended to promote sporting
integrity. Greater financial transparency serves to prevent financial irregularities. There is insufficient evidence before us to enable us to draw any conclusion as to exactly how the senior management of Oldco came to the conclusion that the EBT arrangements did not require to be disclosed to the SPL or the SFA. In our view, the apparent assumption both that the side-letter arrangements were entirely discretionary, and that they did not form part of any player’s contractual entitlement, was seriously misconceived. Over the years, the EBT payments disclosed in Oldco’s accounts were very substantial; at their height, during the year to 30 June2006, they amounted to more than £9 million, against £16.7 million being that year’s figure for wages and salaries. There is no evidence that the Board of Directors of Oldco took any steps to obtain proper external legal or accountancy advice to the Board as to the risks inherent in agreeing to pay players through the EBT arrangements without disclosure to the football authorities. The directors of Oldco must bear a heavy responsibility for this. While there is no question of dishonesty, individual or corporate, we nevertheless take the view that the nondisclosure must be regarded as deliberate, in the sense that a decision was taken that the sideletters need not be or should not be disclosed.

No steps were taken to check, even on a hypothetical basis, the validity of that assumption with the SPL or the SFA. The evidence of Mr Odam (cited at paragraph [43] above) clearly indicates a view amongst the management of Oldco that it might have been detrimental to the desired tax treatment of the payments being made by Oldco to have disclosed the existence of the side-letters to the football authorities.

[108] Given the seriousness, extent and duration of the non-disclosure, we have concluded that nothing less than a substantial financial penalty on Oldco will suffice. Although we are well aware that, as Oldco is in liquidation with an apparently massive deficiency for creditors (even leaving aside a possible reversal of the Tax Tribunal decision on appeal), in practice any fine is likely to be substantially irrecoverable and to the extent that it is recovered the cost will be borne by the creditors of Oldco, we nevertheless think it essential to mark the seriousness of the contraventions with a large financial penalty. Since Issues 1 to 3 relate to a single course of conduct, a single overall fine is appropriate. Taking into account these considerations, we have decided to impose a fine of £250,000 on Oldco.

Compare this with the Clyde FC case where ineligibility was admitted from the outset so there was no question of dishonesty yet they received a sporting sanction in form of a points deduction, whilst Rangers avoided such a fate on account of the Bryson interpretation that meant that a player whilst not fully and correctly registered was nevertheless eligible to play until the errors were discovered.

What Clyde FC said in their defence of their error was

“We are deeply disappointed with the outcome of yesterday’s hearing as, despite the fact that we admitted the breach of the SPFL rules, we feel that we put forward a robust and cogent case as part of our defence. The case concerned a player, Declan Fitzpatrick, who has been registered with Clyde since September 2018 and was recently on loan at Clydebank.
“The breach occurred as a result of a genuine oversight and a gap in the administrative procedures. This error was not the fault of any individual.
“We feel that the sanction imposed was unprecedentedly harsh.

The result of Clyde honestly admitting to an administrative error was a twin football and sporting sanction of £1500 and 4 points deduction for being honest.

Hearts had a similar administrative error defence when they said:

“ Due to an administrative error on the club’s part at the end of the January transfer window, Andrew Irving entered the field of play in the 65th minute as an unregistered player. Andrew was given an extension contract in January, 2018 and his extension paperwork was all properly completed and in order. However, it was not loaded onto the online SFA registration system at the time. His official registration, therefore, ran out on 9th June, 2018. Unfortunately, this was not picked up in advance of last night’s game.”

Hearts, as a result of their honesty, were deducted two points and fined £10k.

Yet in the case of Rangers FC, LNS judged the decision to withhold side letters was deliberate and because, as a result of non-disclosures of evidence to the contrary, he was able to decide there was no question of dishonesty.

The size of the penalty £250k recognised the longevity of what he was able to treat as an administrative error, but because LNS treated it as such and because the SFA advised that a flawed registration, apparently even if deliberate dishonesty was the reason for that flaw, was accepted by a blindsided SFA, then a player was eligible to play and so no points deduction sanction was applied.

The question of the validity of a deliberate and dishonest registration was never address by LNS although he did say in para 88 of his decision:

“There may be extreme cases in which there is such a fundamental defect that the registration of a player must be treated as having been invalid from the outset. But in the kind of situation that we are dealing with here we are satisfied that the registration of the Specified Players with the SPL was valid from the outset, and accordingly that they were eligible to play in official matches.”

What exactly constitutes an extreme case?

Had LNS seen the HMRC letter of 23 February 2011 or the HMRC letter of 20th May 2011 (that incidentally should have been in the SFA’s hands immediately on receipt under UEFA FFP rules before UEFA were notified of clubs granted a UEFA licence in 2011) would he have been duty bound to consider if a fundamental defect had taken place?

In those letters HMRC justified their pursuit of the wee tax case liability of £2.8M under their Extended Limit rules on basis that when they sought evidence of side letters for DOS ebts in April 2005, Rangers had responded dishonestly and that on sight of that response Rangers QC Andrew Thornhill advised them in early March 2011 not to appeal.

Does that evidence, which was not disclosed by Rangers Administrators Duff and Phelps to then SPL lawyers in April 2012, not point to such a fundamental defect in registration that a player’s registration should be regarded as being invalid from the outset?

However regardless of the rights or wrongs in the construction of the LNS Commission and subsequent Decision based on that construction, the salient point is that Clyde FC and Hearts were deducted 4 points and 2 points respectively, after both admitted to an honest mistake in their registration process and both received twin financial and sporting sanctions. Why Hearts were not deducted the 3 points gained as a consequence of beating Cove Rangers is unclear, although a 3 point reversal would have made qualification out of the group impossible.

Hearts were able to overcome the effect of the two-point deduction and still qualify for League Cup final stages so are unlikely to want to revisit the SPFL decision of points deducted.

However a £10k fine for an honest mistake in one game might be worth appealing on the basis that if a £250k fine for every match Rangers fielded incorrectly registered players was apt in the circumstances that LNS was led to believe existed that on a pro rate back of a fag packet basis this amounts to £695 per game over 10 seasons of 36 games a season, a £10k fine is excessive but would Anne Budge budge?

Anyhoo lets compare the three cases to highlight why eyebrows were raised.

Clyde FC

  • honest mistake admitted – financial sanction and points deduction

Hearts FC

  • honest mistake admitted – financial sanction and points deduction

Rangers FC 

  • Deliberate decision taken not to fully register a player’s details with SFA.
  • Evidence of dishonest motivation to not fully registering a player registration concealed by Rangers
  • financial penalty but no points deduction.

It was always going to be the case that what took place in 2012 under the cloak of the Lord Nimmo Smith Commission would unravel in time as it set a precedent that flew in the face of sporting integrity principles and a common held belief that incorrect registrations attracted a sporting sanction, a belief rekindled by the recent decision to deduct points from Clyde FC.

Perhaps there is a rules based difference that justifies the LNS Decision that can be used by the SFA to explain to the common man why no sporting sanction was applied, but what the common man will ask is it more or less likely that in light of the LNS Decision clubs will be honest with the SFA in future if a player falls foul of the registration process or will appeal on the basis that LNS set a precedent against which all clubs should be judged and then sanctioned.

In a nutshell if an honest mistake is admitted how can a points deduction be justified unless the SFA can show the mistake was a deliberate one carried out by a club to give them a sporting advantage.

The LNS Commission was always a can of worms waiting to be opened which is probably why the SFA rejected the SPFL’s request of September 2017 to revisit the SFA handing of Rangers use of ebts and side letters. Have the SFA introduced a moral hazard in the form of the LNS Decision that will continue to undermine the integrity of Scottish football as long as they allow it to?

Oh what a tangled web we weave eh?

370 COMMENTS

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  1. Well done Aberdeen…didn't see that coming!

    And what wheeze is King going to come up with now?

    Well, he's got 40K+ ST's to punt – when the TRFC season has prematurely ended in early March, without silverware.

    Again.

     

    Ibrox Bingo in the SMSM from tomorrow?

    – linked to every decent player in world football: regardless of their unattainable transfer value

    – linked to every decent manager in world football: regardless of their unattainable salary / budget expectations

     

    Or, double down on the misplaced perception of a superiority complex amongst WATP?

    Circle the wagons around Ibrox.

    Develop the victim complex.

    Everybody in Scottish football hates us!

    "Let's all stand together.  No Surrender!   And show your Loyalty…by purchasing these overpriced ST's…"

     

    Time for King to pull a rabbit out of the hat again… 

    indecision

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  2. Cluster One 12th March 2019 at 21:53

    '….We won't have to listen to the build up for an old firm semi ..'

    ******************

    There will be some on the Board of the SFA and the Board of Celtic plc who will be disappointed. Of that I have little doubt.

     

     

     

     

     

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  3. Perhaps fifty years ago, I was at a Division Two game at New Year where a big lad, partially dressed, waddled onto the park then fell drunk within the centre circle.

    The game was held up for a good 10-15 minutes because the one policeman present couldn't move the comatose character thus reinforcements were required from the police station 800 yards away.

    The supporters present, around 600 in number, amused themselves with bottles of whisky and heavy beer.

    The home club was fined a small amount by the football authorities for failing to control the crowd: this was in the day before stewards being employed at a very low wage, as police substitutes.

    Today, stewards are employed in relatively large numbers (relative to police numbers).

    To the essence: fans should behave civilly when they attend matches. Where they don’t, they should be ejected or arrested. It is not the duty of fellow fans to ensure miscreants desist. Police should do their job. Clubs shouldn’t skimp on the safety of players or supporters.

    However, police haven’t being doing their job properly for a long number of years.

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  4. We probably won't get a chance like that for a year or two , but fair do's to all the players . You wouldn't put a dug out in that  . And best wishes to Hearts ( now we're oot !) .

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  5. Borrusiabeefburg

    Sorry , but I think it is the job of their fellow , law abiding , fans to at least try to halt the offending .  If your conscience says that their conduct shouldn't be challenged , even at the cost of a sore face , then fair enough . I'm not Christian , but don't think that is either . (PS I started with a face made for radio which I have since ruined so mibbes I had less to lose .) . 

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  6. You go heavily into debt, giving security over a number of assets for a high interest loan, all in an effort to encourage supporters to come along in large numbers. You do all this confident that it will lead to a trophy and end your hated rival's dominance. Then one defeat, just one defeat…well more than one, but you get the picture.

     

    Warning, some of the language might cause offence, they are rather angel

     

    http://forum.rangersmedia.co.uk/topic/321684-absolute-disgrace/

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  7. 'Allyjambo 13th March 2019 at 09:59

     

    You go heavily into debt, giving security over a number of assets for a high interest loan, all in an effort to encourage supporters to come along in large numbers. You do all this confident that it will lead to a trophy and end your hated rival's dominance. Then one defeat, just one defeat…well more than one, but you get the picture…'

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

     

    Did I read somewhere that the 'Gerrard Revolution' has led to TRFC being one point better off in the league at this juncture than they were last year under Caixinha/Murty? Is that correct?

     

    (My Google-Fu is lacking & I can't find the table for the Premiership after 29 matches last season!)

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  8. Ref my post above:

     

    TRFC is actually six points ahead of its tally after 29 matches last year (I think!).

     

    Apologies for any misdirection!

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  9. Thanks to Auldheid for the new blog examining the next chapter of SFA howlers.

    Unfortunately, the SFA, and all the King's men (ha), get away with it because, and we all know this, the SMSM let them get away with it, and, indeed, collude with them in doing so.

    But, and I'm getting all political here, when compared with the way the UK media deals with the – proven/accepted in court – Brexit corruption, I'm afraid LNS along with the SMSM collusion pales into insignificance.

    I think the 'Rangers Saga' was a dry run for the media in their coverage of the far more important Brexit.

    Apologies for the political content of this post, but I think it important that we acknowledge that a complicit media is not just confined to Scottish football and all things 'Rangers'.

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  10. As ever, when comparing disciplinary cases, it is difficult to draw parallels between the circumstances and outcomes.

    Sometimes it is self evident, e.g. a player was suspended, but played, or perhaps was cup tied with a previous club. In those situations it is very much black and white, so similar sanctions should apply in those cases.

    Comparing the LNS commission with the disciplinary hearing faced by Clyde is I'm afraid comparing apples and pears. LNS was flawed from the outset and designed to achieve a desired outcome, outrageous as it was, and should be dismissed as such by everyone.

    There is no dispute that the players involved in the LNS case were Rangers players at the time. It was the completeness or otherwise of the registrations that was in dispute and whether or not that affected their eligibility. Under SPL rules it seemed an open and shut case that they should have been ineligible for all games. However, the SFA had a different construction of the registration rules, which the SPL (Rod McKenzie) did not dispute and LNS indicated (rightly or wrongly) that the SFA's construction was a valid one, thus the players were eligible to play.

    The only argument left is one of the sanctions applied.  In Rangers case the sanction (£250k fine) was applied for failing to submit contractual documents, not because players were ineligible. Yes, LNS' observations on the lack of dishonesty on the part of Rangers were incredible in the circumstances.

    In contrast, Clyde was sanctioned on the basis of actually fielding an ineligible player, which was admitted by the club, hence the sanctions of a points deduction (4), altered results (2 x 0-3 losses recorded) and a fine (£1,500 – of which £1,000 was suspended).

    The better comparison is with the SPFL sanctions imposed on Hearts earlier this season after they fielded an ineligible player in their League cup group match against Cove.  The League Cup is an SPFL competition, so should have been governed by similar rules and sanctions for similar breaches of the rules.

    Hearts also accepted that their player was ineligible in the 2-1 victory over Cove, but were only docked 2 points and fined £10,000 (£8,000 of which was suspended). The 2-1 result was allowed to stand and Cove wasn't awarded a 3-0 victory, meaning that Hearts ended up with a net 1 point and 1 goal advantage from the Cove match, despite their indiscretion.

    The galling element of that decision (particularly to ICT) was that the sanction wasn't quite enough to put Hearts out of the running to qualify from their group. They were able to qualify on goal difference by winning their final game of the group against ICT, thus denying the Highlanders a place in the last eight of the League Cup.

    Clyde and ICT should be rightly aggrieved at the leniency shown to the big club (Hearts) or the severity of the sanction applied to the wee team (Clyde).

    LNS was what it was, a slap on the wrists, despite years of dishonesty, deception, and cover up, and in no way were the sanctions appropriate to what happened. However, I believe that Clyde would be better arguing their case on what was done to Hearts rather than Rangers.

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  11. "One, er, 2 Rules to rule them all

    Good piece Auldheid.

     

    Can I just bring to everyone's attention that not only did Hearts admit the breach of rules

    it was actually Hearts who noticed the mistake and it was they who told the SPFL/SFA.

    So much for honesty!!

     

    HS

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  12. Nice one Auldheid.

    But, I don't understand why Clyde and/or Hearts didn't appeal on the basis that;

     

    "As per the LNS Commission, we also had 'imperfectly registered' players.

    We're very sorry, and it won't happen again.

    And to be consistent with the LNS ruling, we will accept without complaint the financial penalty.

    However, we absolutely refuse to accept any points deductions."

     

    … and then simply await the SFA's argument as to why the LNS findings are not relevant to Clyde or Hearts – and why it is / was relevant for only 1 of 42 senior clubs under the collective governance of the SFA.

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  13. I watched the TRFC v Aberdeen highlights earlier and was impressed by Aberdeen's strength in the tackle, as well as their skill in pulling their feet away before Morelos could dive, some of whose dives were quite ludicrous. More impressive was their strength of character, though, as they kept their heads while receiving bookings for a couple of those simulated 'fouls' (Morelos and McGregor) that were almost acknowledged by the commentators who managed to pull their tongues away just as adroitly as those Aberdeen players.

    TRFC used 3 strikers last night, whose total salaries must come close to the total salaries of most Premiership clubs first eleven (all but Celtic?), yet they couldn't score. At the end of the season TRFC will undoubtedly have scored more goals than all but Celtic, but a comparison of the cost per goal of each club's goalscorers might be quite enlightening, particularly if, as is most likely, they end up winning exactly the same number of trophies as all the rest bar Celtic.

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  14. Thanks Auldheid

    You might have also referred to the scheming villains at Spartans who played Culter in the Scottish cup with Keith Mcleod’s registration missing a signature on the second page.

    They were dealt with good and proper and sent away with a flea in their ear  

    Or some of the early 5 Way Agreement drafts which we’ve seen where from memory there were proposed deductions that somehow disappeared into the ether when Regan Doncaster et al decided to legitimise their new entity and doctor the allegedly purchased history.

     

    Regan wore out the word transparency in a particularly pompous scripted outpouring early in his shift and it’s still obviously recuperating far from the grasp of the SFA and the SPFL 

     

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  15. Update on Ashley V King:

     

    Rangers lose latest round of merchandise fight with Sports Direct boss Mike Ashley

    By Evening Times Online

     

    Rangers lose latest round of merchandise fight with Sports Direct boss Mike Ashley

    BOSSES at Rangers Football Club have lost the latest round of a High Court figh

    A judge was asked to rule on a disagreement over the meaning of terms of agreements bett with Sports Direct boss Mike Ashley centred on merchandise deals.ween Rangers and a company in the Sports Direct Group.

    Sir Ross Cranston on Wednesday said he had ruled in favour of SDI Retail Services.

    He said he had made declarations, on the meaning of parts of agreements, "along the lines sought by SDI".

    The judge analysed legal argument at a High Court hearing in London in February.

    Rangers also lost a round of the fight in October.

    Another judge ruled that Rangers had breached the terms of an agreement made with SDI.

    Mr Justice Teare concluded that bosses at Rangers had made a new agreement with another firm, the Elite Group, without giving SDI a chance to match that firm's offer.

    SDI bosses have made further complaints relating to other agreements involving Rangers and Elite, and Rangers and Hummel.

    Rangers bosses dispute claims made against them.

    Another hearing is due to take place in April.

    Decisions about damages which Rangers might have to pay could be made after that hearing.

    https://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/news/17497933.rangers-lose-latest-round-of-merchandise-fight-with-sports-direct-boss-mike-ashley/

     

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  16. Finloch

    StevieBC

    Easy Jambo

    The thrust of the article was the sanctions and disparity in relationship to the crime.

    If Clyde don't appeal I would be surprised and EasyJambo has brought out a factor that there might be some circumstances were the nature of the error (extreme cases) means a point deduction is justified.

    My thoughts on this go back to the amateur game where I served on a Discipliary Committee.

    There, a wrong team line meant an automatic voiding of the result, maybe a fine but that was never the deterrent. The overturning of the result was. Either loss of points or replay.

    The thing is at non professional level fielding ringers was not unknown, after I left my club to work overseas  for a spell my successor, now playing fives in heaven , played a ringer because he was of a higher standard in that league.

    So the argument for deducting points was strong in principle not just as a deterrent but because without the ringer the result arguably might have been different.

    However I would question if that applies at the professional level. Did the ineligible players fielded by Clyde/Hearts have an  obvious impact on a result?  Is their standard so much higher than the average at a club (and their opponents)  that they proved match winners?

    The ten points deduction for insolvency is based on the principle that a club diverting income to player wages at expense of creditors gained an on field advantage.

    It was the current Cardiff manager Neil Warnock who got that ball rolling when at Sheffield Utd when Leicester either pipped them for promotion or stayed up  but had an insolvency event and Warnock argued Leicester had got results on an unfair financial basis.

    This was recognised and the 10 point reduction, as well as a deterrent, was designed to offset the advantage gained.

    So in the circumstances of Clyde and Hearts what is the underlying justification for the points deduction apart from deterrent?

    Unlike non professional clubs, playing a ringer is unlikely to be the motivation , so my argument would be make the sanction reflect the actual crime and the circumstances  of where clubs are on the footballing spectrum.

    It is one Clyde FC might  get wider support for, accepting a hike in the financial sanction as the price of no sporting sanction where the circumstances suggest the player in question was  a similar standard to his team mates and opposition and had no impact on the result. It would only apply to professional clubs. The amateurs need to retain overturn of result.

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  17. So King's bold plan to go 'all in' this season to stop 10IAR has come to nowt.

    No title and no silverware to show for significantly increased overheads.

     

    A very expensive management team with some very high earning players with negligible (?) resale value – Morelos aside.

     

    And it would be perfect symmetry if TRFC's remaining ability to thwart 10IAR was ultimately stopped dead in its tracks not by failing to play winning football – but by a faceless, emotionless, financial services company.

     

    "Close closes Ibrox!"

     

    …would be a fitting headline in the SMSM.

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  18. Auldheid 13th March 2019 at 15:38

    ————————————–

    The above demonstrates that, in terms of Strict Liability, the SFA, SPFL and other league association have no qualms about applying sporting sanctions for matters that are, for the most part, off the pitch administrative matters.

    To my mind, on and off the pitch security and safety matters merit a similar range of sanctions to be available, and applied robustly.

    I've seen the arguments that some of the proposed sanctions could be viewed as a punishment for the innocent. However, every club has a duty of care to all its employees and spectators to ensure that they can participate in or attend a match where their safety and security is assured.

    I accept that argument that it is extremely difficult to stop the individual bampot that feels the need to throw missiles or attempt physical assault. Clubs will also argue that they do everything they can to avoid such incidents, with stewarding, PA announcements, programme notes and other prominent warning notices.

    I would still hold clubs accountable for all such incidents. If a club, with the help of all means available to them (e.g. police, stewards, CCTV, club hotlines, social media or phone images), was able to identify the culprit and allow the courts to deal with them, then I would accept that the club would have successfully demonstrated that it had done all that they could reasonably do, and there would be no need for a sanction to be applied.

    If however the culprit was not caught/identified, then it would suggest that the controls were inadequate. Appropriate sanctions for such an incident, might require putting improved stewarding in place following a first incident, or perhaps the installation of CCTV systems (as Hibs have opted to do without being sanctioned) should there be further incidents.  Only when incidents continue to occur should partial ground closure be contemplated, leading to increasingly onerous sanctions such as ground closure, points deduction or expulsion from competitions.

    I know that Hearts opted to incur the costs of extra policing/stewards following an incident a year or two ago at a Dundee Utd or Motherwell game. That was done at a reported cost of £50,000 for the remainder of the season. That's not a particularly cheap option, when technology might offer better detection rates, e.g. improved CCTV within the ground and at turnstiles, tickets with names and addresses recorded etc.  

    I fear that the clubs will do what they normally do when this issue is raised, simply say that they are doing everything they can and that it's somebody else's problem.

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  19. For some reason ALL clubs, including Celtic, seem to live in fear of offending the Great Bear. Why would Hearts and Clyde accept these rulings rather than speak out and make comparisons? No club asked why Willie Collum has not been given a Rangers* match after they complained, etc. etc. No matter what is put forward here or suggested it is all down to the clubs not challenging what happens involving the Ibrox club. Can you imagine any other club playing Morelos and him not being sent off every week. There is no doubt that there is one rule for all but two rules for Ibrox. 

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  20. Auldheid 13th March 2019 at 15:38

     

    EDIT:

    My thoughts on this go back to the amateur game where I served on a Disciplinary Committee.

    There, a wrong team line meant an automatic voiding of the result, maybe a fine but that was never the deterrent. The overturning of the result was. Either loss of points or replay.

    ——————————————–

    I was that soldier. 

    Many years ago I was asked to play for a team in a Yugoslavian social club league (UK). I had played a couple of times on a Sunday for them at the behest of a good friend. All was well until I was booked and asked for my name..slimonivo..slimoni  ah fek it.

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  21. https://en.oxforddictionaries.com

    "Register"

    NOUN

    An official list or record of names or items.

    ‘a membership register’

     

    "Registration"

    NOUN mass noun

    The action or process of registering or of being registered.

    ‘the registration of births, marriages, and deaths’

    ………..

    The SFA keep a list of players. That list is a register. The register is maintained, largely in good faith, from the information provided by the clubs and players. The process and rules describing what and how the information must be provided are the registration procedures.

    If a player has been initially placed on the list and information later comes to light that the registration procedures have not been carried out correctly the player can be removed from the list.

    What the SFA cannot do is say that the player had never been on the list – the player's registration (place on the list) can only revoked from the point in time the defect in procedures became apparent.

    This is effectively what Bryson said – and actually, is self-evident.

    The SFA cannot change an event that has previously occurred. It can only correct it in the present time.

    …..

     

    "Eligible"

    ADJECTIVE

    often eligible for/to do something

    Having the right to do or obtain something; satisfying the appropriate conditions.

    ‘customers who are eligible for discounts’

     

    Suppose I register as unemployed and claim for any and all the benefits that would ensue. But, actually I have a little part-time job that pays cash.

    Ten years later my deceit is uncovered. I say I didn't think I needed to declare the cash payments as there was no PAYE involved. 

    Should the DWP revoke my unemployment registration retrospectively?

    Or should they remove my registration now and reassess my eligibility for the benefits I have already received?

    Or should they concede that I must have been eligible for the benefits simply because I was on the register.

    The SPL's rules covered both aspects. It doesn't matter that the conditions for registration and eligibility were the same

    Registration is an action that has already occurred. Mistakes can only be corrected in the present.

    Eligibility can (theoretically) be reassessed at any time.

     

     

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  22. Rod McKenzie allowed the idea that registration and eligibility were wrapped together to go unchallenged.

    In fact, he may have introduced the idea to LNS.

    Why would he do that?

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  23. The only thing that anyone could state with absolute certainty about the LNS Commission, IMO,

     

    is that it lingers – and will ALWAYS linger – like a bad smell over the SFA, the SPFL, and Hampden in general.

     

    Or, until the SFA and SPFL apologise unreservedly to all Scottish football supporters for their shameful roles in the LNS scandal.

    …which will be never…

     

    Ergo, why do we still bother with such a corrupt, 'sporting' pursuit? 

    heart

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  24. torrejohnbhoy 13th March 2019 at 15:35
    14 0 Rate This

    Update on Ashley V King:
    Decisions about damages which Rangers might have to pay could be made after that hearing.
    ……………………..
    StevieBC 13th March 2019 at 16:03
    13 1 Rate This

    So King’s bold plan to go ‘all in’ this season to stop 10IAR has come to nowt.

    No title and no silverware to show for significantly increased overheads.
    ………………………
    At some point the close loan has to be paid, also damages to sports direct. This season was an all in and it has not worked. What now for the ibrox club?
    The talk of ringers although not related to my post got me thinking.
    What other club if it came up from the lower leagues would be allowed to run up such losses as the ibrox club? get a manager and players that it looks from the outside they just don’t have the money to sustain them. Bringing in highly paid manager and player to TRY and win something on the quick fix is like bringing in a couple of ringers to try and win a game.
    Will the whole ibrox experiment collapse?
    will SG be given money that the club can’t afford to try again?
    Can the ibrox club afford to pay off the loan pay damages to Ashley give SG a warchest(God i have not heard that used in a while from ibrox)
    Will SG walk away if not given the funds to strengthen?
    Will Dave king look to SG as another failure?
    Will the ibrox fans be happy with king if they have to buy their new kit from Ashley?
    Will the ibrox club have a shirt maker if they also are getting draged to court by ashley?

    View Comment

  25. paddy malarkey 13th March 2019 at 21:00
    ……….
    I used to watch that.
    …………………..
    paddy malarkey 13th March 2019 at 21:00
    Will Steve Clarke and Kilmarnock end the season for SG?
    Now that would be class.

    View Comment

  26. StevieBC 13th March 2019 at 19:02

    '…why do we still bother with such a corrupt, 'sporting' pursuit? '

    ***************

    Well, StevieBC, I can offer three reasons:

    1.to nail the bast.rds who played us for mugs for years

    2. to try to jail  any such, if at all possible

    3. to get the Big Lie rescinded, and have the truth proclaimed -TRFC Ltd is not now and never has been, the Rangers Football Club of 1872 foundation , and has no entitlement to claim the honest sporting achievements of that historic, now consigned to history, club.

    And a fourth, perhaps: to make sure that no other SDM gets away with such long-term destructive, malicious, abuse of 'football emperor' power over the SFA/SPFL/ SMSM.

    View Comment

  27. JohnClark@22.12

    Following on from JC’s point 4. SFM has taken on the role of the wee boy pointing out that the current Emperor has no clothes or at least is wearing borrowed clothes. The thing about the truth is that it doesn’t have to be invented. It is always there.

    View Comment

  28. gunnerb 13th March 2019 at 17:50

    Auldheid 13th March 2019 at 15:38

     

    EDIT:

    My thoughts on this go back to the amateur game where I served on a Disciplinary Committee.

    There, a wrong team line meant an automatic voiding of the result, maybe a fine but that was never the deterrent. The overturning of the result was. Either loss of points or replay.

    ——————————————–

    I was that soldier. 

    Many years ago I was asked to play for a team in a Yugoslavian social club league (UK). I had played a couple of times on a Sunday for them at the behest of a good friend. All was well until I was booked and asked for my name..slimonivo..slimoni  ah fek it.

    What I didn't add to the case I mentioned was  that my good footballing friend, now sadly departed, sent a ringer to represent the ringer that played to attend the disciplinary hearing.

    I think it backfired from memory. 

    View Comment

  29. From  https://rangers.co.uk/club/investor-centre/

    'Business Overview

    Rangers Football Club is a football club based in Glasgow, Scotland.

    The Rangers Football Club, formed in 1872, is one of the world’s most successful clubs, having won 54 League titles, 33 Scottish Cups, 27 League Cups and the European Cup Winners’ Cup in 1972.'

     
    __
    And so it was indeed (leave aside tax fiddling and calculated lying to the SPL and SFA).

    But the claim made in the financial market place by those launching the RIFC plc IPO that TRFC Ltd was the identical football club to that very successful Rangers football Club has always seemed to me an outright lie, aimed at deceiving investors into believing that they were investing in a sound, solid, successful enterprise of some 140 years of success.

    I am still, when I think about it, astonished at the lack of questioning by market authorities at the absurdity of such a claim.

     

    <

    View Comment

  30. easyJambo 13th March 2019 at 17:15 

    I posted this on CQN  on 4th March 2019 8:50 pm some of which aligns with your thinking.

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

    My thoughts on individual and group bad behaviour.

    There has to be a fast track way of identifying and arresting culprits who endanger the safety of players and other supporters.

    It should start in real time as soon as an incident occurs by trained stewards filming those in the area and establishing with club database who bought tickets and club interviewing them within 24 hours to pin down the culprit and inform the police.

    Then a well publicised arrest followed by a quick trial set up for the purpose of swift justice where corrective action according to the individuals circumstances is taken, fine or jail.

    When it comes to singing, that is in the sticks and stones category and might involve many.

    So a few need identified, arrested within say a week, tried the following and punishment published.

    On legislation I agree that anything that affects a players wage would be challengeable if any bonus was related to where in the division a club ended at end of season.

    Interestingly I heard the idea of club licensing being an alternative deterrent to legislation

    If you think about it, it was UEFA stepping in (and they have rules covering safety at grounds that could apply ) that ended The singing of The Billy Boys (that started the Gotcha trail of the previous article) at UEFA matches.

    Why not extend that to domestic competition and introduce indicators (UEFA like indicators) to show if a club 1) has a problem. 2) has addressed it 3) how successful their attempts have been at ending it and then decide at licensing time based on those measurements if a club is one UEFA would want a licence granted to?

    UEFA could have no grounds for objecting to that since its not Government led, but if a transparent measurement system was introduced into club licensing it would have the same deterrent effect on the supporters of bigger clubs with European ambitions and for smaller clubs with no UEFA ambition making a licence conditional on improvement or playing behind closed doors would be a deterrent.

    No reason why both approaches should not be explored..

    View Comment

  31. Ex Ludo 13th March 2019 at 22:40

    '..The thing about the truth is that it doesn’t have to be invented. It is always there.'

    *****

    Always. Inescapably. Truth prevails.

    And even the most decadent , the most evil, most perverse specimens of humanity do not ,cannot and have not been able to resist . 

    Sooner or later, we shall drag our Football Governance into the path of Integrity.

     

     

    View Comment

  32. @StevieBC 13th March 2019 at 16:03

    A very expensive management team with some very high earning players with negligible (?) resale value – Morelos aside.

    Why are more and more people suddenly believing Morelos has value? When the DR 1st reported a Chinese club had bid 7m for him it was widely mocked as ridiculous , his value has now escalated to 20m according to our MSM and people are now saying they might get 7m but no more. It's almost as if you repeat a lie often enough that people will believe it . His scoring record while impressive on paper is when broken down a collection of goals against lower league,bottom 6 or clubs reduced to 10 men , his disciplinary record is shocking and that is with our refs turning a blind eye to his antics and repealing cards he was rightly given on the park. Sometimes this type of propaganda works , Celtic shelled out 5m for Rafael Scheidt on the basis he was Brazilian and had an International cap so maybe just maybe Rangers* will find a gullible club in a hurry and daft enough not to look too closely at the temperamental over rated son of a mattress ( apologies to Mother Morelos ,I'm sure you're very nice in real life) The guy is a temperamental liability and a divisive character in the dressing room  who can score against poor opposition , using the Barrie McKay calculator he is worth 1.8m which would seem realistic to me. I had mentioned previously that his value rises in proportion with his clubs* debt and seeing that Ashley is lining up for another legal victory , the TOP costs and their own legal bills mounting , Morelos could soon be rivalling Virgil van Dyke in the transfer market. Either King gets very very lucky or this can runs out of road very shortly.

    View Comment

  33. Timtim 14th March 2019 at 01:29

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

    Re-the transfer value of Morelos. Even allowing for my natural bias it's difficult not to conclude that the media are doing all they can to talk up his value in an attempt to help get Rangers money. No-one of sound mind could believe that a player can come here for a reported £1m, then gain £19m based hugely on his scoring exploits in the SPL. The comparison with what Celtic got for Dembele is unfathomable. Spurs had already bid £6m for Dembele when a teenager, He had scored at the highest level with Celtic, i.e the Champions League, he was a regular star with France under 21 and had broken into the full squad, and had regularly put Rangers to the sword. Morelos has done none of that and Dembele looks a far more talented player in any case in my view, and is not a disciplinary basket case either.  A couple of seasons back Leigh Griffiths scored over 40 goals for Celtic, including in the Champions League. He scored those two memorable free kicks against England. Would the media have gone along with Celtic had they said he was worth £20m? Definitely not, and he wasn't worth that anyway, but current issues aside, there is a strong argument he is a better player than Morelos. 

    Unfortunately we are seeing the worst excesses of the media at work again, no doubt influenced by Mr Traynor.  

    View Comment

  34. Couple of observations: transfermarkt website has Morelos valued at £2.7m, he’s just signed a new contract so you’d need to pay over the odds to “prise” home away (no laughing at the back!) so probably at least double it to get a value. I’d say £5m plus add-ins taking it to £6.5m/7m would be very good business. 

    I think they’d do well to get that tbh because of those disciplinary issues, but you never know…

     

    The other thing is: clearly a memo has gone out rallying the MSM troops to puff up Stevie G’s achievements (sic) this season. He’s on the right track, any infinitesimal improvement over last year is out under a microscope, any issues (like his recruiting performance, glossed over). 

    Of course he’s an improvement over the last guy – you sacked the last guy, and the guy before him who you’re also comparing him to – doesn’t make him good. God knows I’m not a fan of the Brave Sir Walter but I saw Stevie G’s defence compared to Wallie’s in his pomp! This Rangers have got a decent record but it’s that of a flat-track bully – mostly running up scores once a game is done. Fair enough I guess.

    But is this campaign to convince Gerrard to stay and give another 12 months of his nascent managerial career to Project Stop TIAR? Or is it to placate the hordes? I’m not sure – but there’s definitely been a BHat signal sent out…

    View Comment

  35. In the good old days a Souness or a Cardigan would follow the media hype up with a tangible bid ,put his subsequent performances down to being unsettled and leave him languishing in the reserves . If the interest from EPL and Bundesliga clubs was genuine why would you sign a new contract , it makes the costs to them higher thus less likely to happen. Did Morelos just scupper his dream of an EPL move? His agent would be aware of the real state of play ,he knows there is no real interest and has played them like a fiddle to get a new improved deal for his client. Gerrard is now stuck with a moody over rated and petulant player on big wages for the next 3/4 years all because Traynor hyped him to the moon. Morelos has got what he wanted , decent pay on a long contract. Those who watched Defoes interview after the cup game may have seen him say"what's important is we stick together" he emphasised this quite a few times which imo reveals that the squad are really falling apart. Looking at the personalities involved I would imagine Morelos and his ego would play a major part in that . Having both Gerrard and Morelos on long and lucrative contracts makes getting rid of them an expensive problem if they don't live up to the hype they themselves have created. Morelos could always be sold for an undisclosed fee but it will soon be evident from audited accounts that he didn't go for top dollar , that leaves King vulnerable on incompetence charges. There is an appropriate saying , something about silk purses and pigs ears that fits this narrative.

    View Comment

  36. And in addition to the copy / paste instructions to the SMSM, which can be condensed down to;

    • TRFC supporters, wind your necks in

    &

    • Gerrard has done not bad, really, and deserves another season…

     

    All the rags seem to have been instructed to carry a useful squirrel as well: the 'huge' compensation paid to CFC for Rodgers and his assistants by LCFC.

    Ok, if it was actually £9M then fine.

    But, why are the Scottish papers reporting this in tandem today?

     

    Mibbees tomorrow's papers will be 'reporting' on which highly expensive players Lawwell could be 'splashing the cash on'…

    indecision

     

    View Comment

  37. Hmmm, interesting piece by John James.

    If correct, he's implying that Gerrard seems to have lost the respect of his players.

    And his lack of man management – never mind football management – is now painfully exposed.

    Tricky one.

     

    If Gerrard doesn't get a much better offer from down south

    &

    TRFC doesn't have a warchest this summer broken heart

    &

    TRFC doesn't have the cash to resign him…

     

    View Comment

  38. Ally Jambo 13 March 14.54

    The one factor common to the governance of Scottish football and governance of UK, regardless of scale is covered by 2 words.

    No accountability

     

    and main stream media has played a huge part in enabling that to continue.

    The parallels have been noted by at least one media stalwart in England but this current trauma in society will eventually , perhaps not in my life time but inevitably, hold msn to account and social media will be the cause.

    View Comment

  39. A first indication of the value of the Elite deal. (I'm still reading through the court judgement so there may be more)

    In relation to offered right 1, there were thirteen paragraphs:
    “In respect of Offered Right 1, we offer to provide to you the following:
    1. We shall pay Rangers 20% of all receipts (excluding VAT) from the retail and online sale of kit and other products with a guaranteed minimum payment of £350,000 per annum. Payment shall be quarterly in arrears with the first payment due on 1 November 2018. If the sum due would not otherwise reach the guaranteed minimum with the 4th payment, it shall be increased to reach that minimum.

    5. We shall meet the cost of £500,000 of works on a new shop fit for the Rangers Megastore and the cost of developing an enhanced Webstore. All costs on these works will be evidenced to Rangers on an open book basis. Shop fit to be complete within 4 weeks of the commencement of this Agreement with the Webstore to be available for the placing and acceptance of orders by 1 August 2018 or such later date as we agree and pop up stores at Ibrox Stadium also to be open on that date. In the event that our appointment is terminated for reasons other than our contractual breach or insolvency, you shall reimburse to us up to 40% of the costs of the Megastore fit out subject that the amount to be repaid shall not exceed the amount of our spend less £300,000.

    9. The RRP for the sale of adult’s retails shirts adopted by us shall be benchmarked against the RRP adopted by Celtic FC.

    10. Duration of Contract – 2 years commencing on 1 August 2018. You shall have the ability to terminate the appointment forthwith without penalty or compensation to us if we fail to comply with our contractual obligations (including the sharing of financial information and the timeous payment of sums due to Rangers). We shall agree key performance indicators with you to allow you to assess our delivery of services pursuant to the appointment and implement improvement programmes in respect of any area where you assess our services as deficient. In the event that we consistently satisfy the key performance indicators agreed with you, our appointment will be extended for an additional period of 12 months.

     

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  40. Rangers receipt of 20% of sales seems relatively generous, however the guaranteed minimum at just £350k per annum seems very low (perhaps in line with expectations), although that only covers the first of 3 parts of the deal;

    (i) the sale of Rangers branded products and replica kit at the Ibrox Stadium and the Rangers webstore (offered right 1).

    The other two parts of the deal, details of which aren't disclosed, covered other aspects the retail operation.

    (ii) the sale, distribution and promotion of Rangers branded products other than replica kit (offered right 2); and

    (iii) the sale, distribution and promotion of replica kit and official rangers kit (offered right 3).

    It seems odd that a reference to Celtic should feature in a Rangers retail agreement, or maybe the intention is that "for every £5 Celtic charge Rangers will charge £10".

    I'm sure that the April hearing will establish what SDI thought it could earn from the deal had they been allowed to continue (as per the matching rights arrangement). 

    View Comment

  41. easyJambo 14th March 2019 at 14:16
    It seems odd that a reference to Celtic should feature in a Rangers retail agreement, or maybe the intention is that "for every £5 Celtic charge Rangers will charge £10".

    Isn't that because it's all about the Celtic 🙂

     

    View Comment

  42. easyJambo 14th March 2019 at 14:16

    '.It seems odd that a reference to Celtic should feature in a Rangers retail agreement, or maybe the intention is that "for every £5 Celtic charge Rangers will charge £10".

    **************

    Yes, I nearly choked on my croissant when I read  this:

    '…The RRP for the sale of adult's retails shirts adopted by us shall be benchmarked against the RRP adopted by Celtic FC.'

    What an extraordinarily narrow, narrow view colours the business and legal minds of the denizens of Ibrox, that one rival team should somehow be taken as the bench mark for their strivings. 

    View Comment

  43. In case my gag was not well understood, I too find it odd that "Only here to see the Rangers" / "We welcome the chase" / "It's all about the Rangers" etc. should appear to be pegging the RRP of their replica jerseys to that of a rival club.

    Also, but for the fact that nobody chooses between two rival club jerseys based on cost (except maybe tourists?), I'd say that looks like price-fixing.

     

    View Comment

  44. easyJambo 14th March 2019 at 14:16
    Rangers receipt of 20% of sales seems relatively generous, however the guaranteed minimum at just £350k per annum seems very low.
    ……………………
    Any information on unsold stock, or could we hear about it at April hearing ?

    View Comment

  45. If i was a rangers fan watching the games on the terraces with a season ticket, then i would definitely be excited…. jermain Defo.

    Is this the first shot across the bow to get the season ticket holders at ibrox to renew?

    After reading Defoe's puff piece in today's smsm it had all the Buzz words we have come to expect.

    Massive club.

    Big club.

    Ticks all the boxes.

    Quality squad.

    Bring success back.

    Glory days back.

    The wow factor.

    The only disapointment i have with the puff piece is he never mentioned the world class breakfast you get at no longer named murray park.

    View Comment

  46. Something for next week :

     

    LORD DOHERTY – C Munn, Clerk

     Wednesday 20th March

    Dentons UK

    Starred Motion

    between 10.00am and 11.00am

     

    P115/17 Note: RFC 2012 Plc for orders under para 75 

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Something for next week :

     

    LORD DOHERTY – C Munn, Clerk

     Wednesday 20th March

    Dentons UK

    Starred Motion

    between 10.00am and 11.00am

     

    P115/17 Note: RFC 2012 Plc for orders under para 75 

     

     

     

    Something for next week :

     

    LORD DOHERTY – C Munn, Clerk

     Wednesday 20th March

    Dentons UK

    Starred Motion

    between 10.00am and 11.00am

     

    P115/17 Note: RFC 2012 Plc for orders under para 75 

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Something for next week :

     

    LORD DOHERTY – C Munn, Clerk

     Wednesday 20th March

    Dentons UK

    Starred Motion

    between 10.00am and 11.00am

     

    P115/17 Note: RFC 2012 Plc for orders under para 75 

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Something for next week :

     

    LORD DOHERTY – C Munn, Clerk

     Wednesday 20th March

    Dentons UK

    Starred Motion

    between 10.00am and 11.00am

     

    P115/17 Note: RFC 2012 Plc for orders under para 75 

    (BDO v D&P0

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    View Comment

  47. Bloody hell, what happened there? Must have fallen asleep at the keyboard. Apologies for the repetition, repetition, repetetition.

    Maybe if there's a mod looking in,he could scrub the redundant entries. Please?

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  48. Just had time to read Auldheids blog.
    and another good one it is.
    ………..
    whilst Rangers avoided such a fate on account of the Bryson interpretation that meant that a player whilst not fully and correctly registered was nevertheless eligible to play until the errors were discovered.
    ……………..
    Small question if i may?
    Was Steven Davis The last rangers player to be given an EBT?
    What would have happened if the club had not gone into Administration and then liquidation and the registered errors were discovered.?
    Did the Administration and liquidation save the ibrox club from what could have been the biggest points deduction and fines in scottish football history?

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  49. ClusterOne @22.21

    “Did the Administration and liquidation save the ibrox club from what could have been the biggest points deduction and fines in scottish football history?”

    Now there’s a story!

    View Comment

  50. “So Rangers and Gerrard are whey they are. And, right now, that’s not in a particularly pleasant place.”

    The above is a quote from a Keith Jackson piece in the DR. It could be the start of a campaign to encourage Mr Gerrard to work a bit harder or as a shot across the bows. That sense of entitlement is never far away though and ignores the reality of a rookie manager in his first job trying to get by on a tight budget. 

    View Comment

    1. Cluster One 14th March 2019 at 22:21  
    2. '….What would have happened if the club had not gone into Administration and then liquidation and the registered errors were discovered.?'
    3. *******************
    4. You mean you think they had not been known about in SFA circles from the day the first EBT payments were omitted from the accounts submitted statement by SDM in respect of players' remuneration?
    5. Remarkably charitable of you, Cluster One!angry
    View Comment

  51. Ex Ludo 15th March 2019 at 08:45 

     

    “So Rangers and Gerrard are whey they are. And, right now, that’s not in a particularly pleasant place.”

    The above is a quote from a Keith Jackson piece in the DR. It could be the start of a campaign to encourage Mr Gerrard to work a bit harder or as a shot across the bows. That sense of entitlement is never far away though and ignores the reality of a rookie manager in his first job trying to get by on a tight budget. 

    _____________________

     

    Ex Ludo, is this from today's DR? For PMGB predicted this in his piece from yesterday, saying that the green light had been given (to Traynor?) to brief the SMSM against Gerrard. Kudos to PMGB.

    https://philmacgiollabhain.ie/2019/03/14/50-ways-to-lose-your-liverpool-lover/#more-13157

    The saga is never ending in it's entertainment value. So happens I'm off to the theatre tonight to watch Rain Man at the Lowry in Manchester (well, Salford actually, but it is the home of Manchester United), and I just hope it's half as entertaining as the story from Ibrox has been for the past seven yearsmail

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  52. Moira Gordon gives a bit of space in today's 'The Scotsman' to Heckingbottom's surprise that referee  Mc Lean phoned Gerrard to apologise for a mistake.

    I wonder whether any other manager has had such a courtesy extended to him? I've never seen any similar kind of report..?

    And who reported the phone call, I wonder? -McLean himself, or Gerrard?

    As Heckingbottom says, it was  'foolish ' especially at a time when officials are under the spotlight!

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  53. Is anyone able to tell me how to put back in the box above (where it has buttons for bold, and italics and underlining) the symbol for undo and redo?
    It used to be there, but somehow it disappeared, and I miss it quite badly!

    View Comment

  54. Did that club win any silverware this season?

    Mibbees a club from Glasgow would be interested in acquiring a trophy this season?

    …to add to the 54+ trophies they had acquired from another club back in 2012.

     

    Well, the SFA /SPFL seemed to have established a ridiculous precedent back then, so why not?

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