Stevie G – The Real Deal?

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Steven Gerrard’s slip in 2014 against Chelsea cost Liverpool the league and extinguished Brendan Rodger’s chances of having his name written in Liverpool folklore. Now Steven Gerrard stands in his way of becoming a Celtic legend, by stopping the Ulsterman from claiming an eighth successive title for the Hoops.

But how realistic is that? Can this Anfield great transform the beleaguered ‘Gers into title contenders? Or like his pursuit for a Premier League title, will it ultimately end in failure? Here we take a look at Gerrard’s chances of breaking Celtic’s dominance next season.

Is he tactically astute?

During Sven Goran-Erikkson’s reign as England manager, he was blessed with midfield greats such as Frank Lampard, Paul Scholes, David Beckham and Steven Gerrard. Lampard consistently netted 20+ goals a season for Chelsea and Gerrard seemingly won games on his own for Liverpool.

Yet the two couldn’t play together, and one of the reasons for that was Gerrard’s tactical ineptitude. Whilst Lampard had shown himself adept at following a tactical plan under Mourinho, Gerrard only flourished when partnered with Xabi Alonso – a canny operator with a sharp footballing brain.

All too often Gerrard would abandon his responsibilities and scupper England’s attacks with predictable ‘Hollywood’ passes. If his disregard of tactics from his playing career is anything to go by, then his time at Ibrox will be short-lived.

Signings

Much has been made of the expected wave of Liverpool loanee’s at Ibrox, but so far the new manager has opted to find most of his talent from elsewhere. Scott Arfield, Allan McGregor, Connor Goldson and Ovi Ejaria have all joined the ‘Gers.

Jon Flanagan is the only incoming player with links to Gerrard’s former club, and whilst signings from Brighton, Sunderland and Burnley might not be inspiring, they seem more astute than bringing in second-rate Liverpool rejects. The signing have ensured that Rangers are now 12/1 for the title, second favourites to Celtic.

The transfer market is a crowded place at the moment and Rangers, like Celtic, simply do not have the allure or the money of most Championship clubs never mind Premier League outfits. If Rangers are to be successful they need to maximise the transfer market as Celtic did when David Moss was the head of recruitment.

Moss was the man responsible for bringing players such as Victor Wanyama, Virgil Van Dijk and Moussa Dembele to Parkhead, with the Hoops making substantial profits on most of their player purchases.

Gerrard needs to bring the right scouting team into Ibrox in the hope of emulating Celtic’s transfer success. If he doesn’t, then he won’t stand a chance of challenging Brendan Rodgers as Rangers’ current squad isn’t up to much.

The odds

As much as analysis of Gerrard’s history and style is helpful, it doesn’t give any clear indicators. With the notable exception of Leicester City, the bookies have always tended to get things right in football.

Manchester City and Celtic were the bookies favourites for their domestic leagues last season and Real Madrid were the favourites for the Champions League.

1082 COMMENTS


  1. It turns out that today's appeal wasn't about Lady Wolffe's recent decision. Indeed just yesterday she refused King leave to appeal, so the contempt hearing will proceed at the end of the month.

    Today's appeal was actually King appealing against TOP's claim for additional expenses due to the novelty and complexity of the case. The three Lords, led by the Lord President heard short submissions from both sides, went into a huddle for 45 seconds, then threw out King's appeal.

    I confirmed with a journalist present that King has been deemed liable for all fees incurred by both sides to date. 

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  2. I would love to know who is paying these legal fees.  Dave King himself or will he manage to steer them on to the Ibrox accounts.  Which would be disgraceful of course.  But he does have history of using other peoples money.

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  3. To add a little to eJ's summary, the business this morning was presided over Lord Carloway, with lords Drummond Young and Glennie.

    Mr Turner QC for the Takeover Panel reminded the Court that the TOP had used S 955 of the Companies Act 2006 for the first time ever. This novelty had occasioned additional work and therefore additional fees had been sought.

    He observed that the matter had been urgent,and that those who had instructed the TOP had acted accordingly to move forward. At every stage they had moved swiftly to get early dates , early dates resisted by the reclaimer..

    The novelty of using S 955 had occasioned a greater degree of specialist knowledge to be acquired and applied, and the fact that the reclaimer was domiciled in South Africa had required further time and labour:there were the fees for solicitors in South Africa

    The number of documents mentioned by the reclaimer do not include 200 pages and a further 300-page Hearing's bundle from the TOP Hearing.

    The case is being conducted in a very high degree of publicity[Mr Turner looked round at the three of us-eJ, Macmullan, and me as if to confirm that statement] and the level of scrutiny is very high.

    The TOP has a limited number of teeth, and public confidence in its first ever use of Section 955 requires that the TOP be thorough and diligent in its approach.

    And it's not as if the costs were relatively small. The case involves  involved millions of pounds.

    Mr Mitchell QC for King (the reclaimer) submitted that there was no work beyond the ordinary call of duty. The history here, he said, is that instructions were received on 23rd march 2017, the Petitioner acted on 31st March, and then in April 2017.

    Yes, he conceded, it's a novel question: but that can be said of anything.

    As far as the Inner and outer Houses had been concerned, the Inner House had a 3-hour hearing, the Outer House had a day and a half. And the issues before them were not complex. There was nothing to drive additional fees for solicitors.

    And there has not been a whisper of what specialised knowledge and skills had been required on the part of solicitors. Much of the work was routine and performed by junior staff.

    At this point, lord Drummond Young asked whether specialised knowledge and expertise in Company Law might not have been required?

    Mr Mitchell replied, not really. And as for the question of how the judge is to interpret S955 and apply it, well, that kind of question is par for the course.

    Counsel acted promptly. There was nothing out of the ordinary in the number of documents. By the standard of reclaiming motions it was not an unusual number. Even the initial bundle is only in the region of 300 pages.

    As for place,there was nothing more than is ever involved in respect of any non-European country.

    The 'public interest' is not a reason for additional  fees. Nor is the amount of money involved.

    In Mr Mitchell's submission, there is nothing in Mr Turner's motion.

    The three judges gathered in a wee huddle to deliberate.

    eJ, watch in hand, timed them at 45 seconds,before Lord Carloway delivered the Courts opinion.

    This was to grant additional fees in respect of points A, B and E of mr Turner's submission.

    ( Don't ask which of the points I've mentioned above are points A B and E.)

     

     

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  4. JC @ 13.52 16 Nov 2018

    Many thanks for your & EJ's time & effort for the court appearence(s) – so a large legal bill heading to King – if he is convicted of contempt further costs & a sentence to follow as surely as a ban from Scottish football (via the SFA) – a position he never should have been in the first place i.e. fit & proper (not) – & spare us the bullsh*t that he is not directly involved with The Rangers FC as he is chairman of the holding company .

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  5. easyJambo 16th November 2018 at 11:03
    Today’s appeal was actually King appealing against TOP’s claim for additional expenses due to the novelty and complexity of the case. The three Lords, led by the Lord President heard short submissions from both sides, went into a huddle for 45 seconds, then threw out King’s appeal.
    ……………………
    To me it looks like Mr king likes to kick the can down the road.With TOP and Mike Ashley.
    Appeal every court decision, if it goes against you, and then appeal the cost it takes when you appeal every court decision that you appeal.
    All very well in kicking the can, but a double whammy when you reach the end of appealing and are found guilty and the court agrees you to be deemed liable for all fees incurred by both sides to date.
    Could have been cheaper and more cost effective to have abide by the law in the first place and to stick with the contracts.

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  6. John Clark 16th November 2018 at 13:52
    The case is being conducted in a very high degree of publicity[Mr Turner looked round at the three of us-eJ, Macmullan, and me as if to confirm that statement] and the level of scrutiny is very high.
    The TOP has a limited number of teeth, and public confidence in its first ever use of Section 955 requires that the TOP be thorough and diligent in its approach.
    …………..
    When they know the guys from TSFM are watching.
    Thanks again JC and easyJambo.
    ……………
    Ps who is Macmullan? was he the journalist present that easyJambo spoke to.

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  7. I'm finally getting some confidence that the TOP will actually nail King to the mast.

    The fact that "the case is being conducted in a very high degree of publicity" leaves little room to hide this under the carpet, so much kudos must go to the 3 aforementioned for their relentless pursuit in these and other matters.

    King (or RIFC) now has another large legal bill , he is responsible for funding the shortfall to satisfy the accounts and it looks like the can has reached the end of the road as far as the 12m for the TOP is concerned. If he simply hides in Sth Africa where does that leave the running of the club? Where does it leave his fellow Directors ? and where does it leave the accountants ? If he is found guilty of contempt then the SFA must surely ban him but if they do they are signing the clubs death warrant as they currently only survive due to his funding promises. Panto season has arrived at the Kings Theatre , oh yes it has……

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  8. https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/rangers-chairman-dave-king-ordered-13600313.amp?utm_source=twitter.com&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=sharebar&__twitter_impression=true
    …………….
    Rangers chairman Dave King has been ordered to pay the legal costs of his attempt to stop a contempt of court action against him.
    …………
    naegreetin 16th November 2018 at 15:25
    & spare us the bullsh*t that he is not directly involved with The Rangers FC as he is chairman of the holding company .
    …….
    the Record has him as Rangers chairman.even though we know he is not.
    …………………….
    The South African resident’s own legal team failed to convince judge Lady Wolffe earlier this week that the contempt action should be stopped because the correct legal procedure hadn’t been followed.
    …………….How long until king appeals his own legal team are not very good and wants to appeal every court case they were involved in with him.
    Don’t count it out…

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  9. Cluster One 16th November 2018 at 18:37

    Ps who is Macmullan? was he the journalist present that easyJambo spoke to.

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

    JC always seems to have problems remembering his surname. It's James Mulholland. He's an agency court reporter, i.e. he will probably be paid a retainer by the agency for writing "x" court reports per week, with his earnings boosted each time a newspaper publishes one of his reports, as the Record did this afternoon. 

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  10. Cluster One 16th November 2018 at 18:49

    From the article

     

    The case was originally brought to court over the actions of King and the so called "three bears" – businessmen George Letham, George Taylor and Douglas Park – during their takeover of Rangers in late 2014.

    Investigators for the panel concluded that the quartet acted in concert to acquire 30 per cent of the shares in Rangers.

    The money for the shares which the four men purchased came from offshore trusts which were in the name of King's family.

     

    I read that as all the shares being paid for by King's offshore family trusts and not by the other individuals named ?

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  11. Cluster One 16th November 2018 at 18:37

    Ps who is Macmullan?

    easyJambo 16th November 2018 at 18:54

    '..JC always seems to have problems remembering his surname…'

    ______________________

    Ha,ha. I don't even know  a Macmullan except a Brigadier who was UK military attache to somewhere. And believe  me, there's no way our Mulholland is anything like that Brigadier!

    Apologies to all, including Mulholland and the shade of the Brigadier.

     

     

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  12. easyJambo 16th November 2018 at 18:54
    Thanks for clarification.
    ………………….
    paddy malarkey 16th November 2018 at 19:27
    ………..
    I believe it’s not the only thing they got wrong in the article.
    ………………………….
    https://www.theguardian.com/football/2015/jan/02/rangers-board-douglas-park-three-bears
    The Rangers board has welcomed the purchase of 13.3m shares by millionaire businessman Douglas Park’s Three Bears group.

    It was revealed on New Year’s Eve that the club’s largest shareholder Laxey Partners had sold its 16% stake to Park and his associates George Letham and George Taylor.

    The Laxey chairman, Colin Kingsnorth, claimed he was handing the shares to the three wealthy supporters so they could lead the fight against Mike Ashley’s Ibrox involvement, after labelling the Rangers chairman David Somers a “wet fish”.
    ……………………………………
    Dave Ki staged a dramatic return to the Rangers power battle on Friday in a move that places huge pressure on the current boardroom regime.
    The South Africa-based businessman purchased a near 15 per cent stake in the club by buying up shares held by fund managers Artemis and Miton.
    Former Ibrox director King is acting independently of the group comprising wealthy supporters Douglas Park, George Letham and George Taylor, who bought out Laxey Partners earlier this week to raise their total holding to 19 per cent.
    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2894708/Dave-King-buys-14-5-stake-Rangers-former-Ibrox-director-makes-pitch-power.html

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  13. paddy malarkey 16th November 2018 at 19:27

    '……..I read that as all the shares being paid for by King's offshore family trusts and not by the other individuals named ?'

    ________________________

    Yes, pm.

    "The Executive relied on this Rule in holding that in the circumstances of this case it was just for Mr King alone to incur the obligation to extend a Rule 9 offer.From the Hearing

     "The Executive concluded that Mr King thereby incurred an obligation under rule 9 of the Code to procure the making of an offer for all Rangers shares not held by NOAL or by those with whom he had acted in concert.'

    see this link to the Panel Hearing Committee's findings (para 96)

    https://www.sfm.scot/stevie-g-the-real-deal/comment-page-21/#comment-22002
     

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  14. Douglas Fraser‏Verified account @BBCDouglasF 2m2 minutes ago

    BREAKING: Johnston Press, Edinburgh HQd owner of @thescotsman @ipapernews @yorkshirepost +200 local papers is set to go into administration. Its board has filed intention to transfer assets to new company owned by its bondholders.

    @Johnston_Press last month put itself up for sale, as it couldn’t refinance its debt: “Following considerable interest in the Formal Sale Process, the Board concluded none of the offers received deliver sufficient value and has ended the Formal Sale Process”…

    A blow for the SMSM

    I wonder if the Scotsman and Edinburgh Evening News will survive in their current print and online forms.

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  15. Hi , JC ,

    I understand that King is being held legally responsible and incurred the obligation , it was more the source of funds , given that King's family offshore trusts paid all the money for the shares and nothing from the 3 Bears ? Or am I being obtuse ?v

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  16. easyJambo 16th November 2018 at 22:06

    '..Johnston Press, Edinburgh HQd owner of @thescotsman @ipapernews @yorkshirepost +200 local papers is set to go into administration.'

    ______________________

    A blow for the SMSM indeed.

    And I think it behoves us to remember that the 'SMSM' that we refer to on this blog is shorthand for those writing about Scottish Football in the Scottish media who are propagators of the 'Big Lie' and deniers of death-by-losing entitlement to compete in Scottish Football. 

    The death of a newspaper is not a good thing in itself and not a cause for celebration in any democratic society. If "The Scotsman" were to die , I would grieve for the loss of some excellent writers and good features.

    Those who help prop up a failed Football Governance body……..Not a lot of sympathy do I have for them.

     

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  17. paddy malarkey 16th November 2018 at 22:23

    Hi , JC ,

    I understand that King is being held legally responsible and incurred the obligation , it was more the source of funds , given that King's family offshore trusts paid all the money for the shares and nothing from the 3 Bears ? Or am I being obtuse ?

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

    It's a mistake in the article.  King's "trust", NOAL, only bought shares for the benefit of King.  The three bears bought their own shares from Laxey, who wouldn't do business with King.

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  18. redlichtie 16th November 2018 at 23:22
    18 2 Rate This

    Some irony surely that the Chief Executive of Johnston Press is a Mr David King!

    Scottish Football needs a strong SMSM.
    ………………
    One can only hope Mike Ashley does not get involved, All these Dave king’s to deal with

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  19. Cluster One 17th November 2018 at 11:28

    theredpill 17th November 2018 at 10:45
    0 0 Rate This

    May be of interest to a certain poster.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/46238619
    …………………….
    Appeal! it’s the in thing i hear.

    Arbroath-haters! Where’s the addresses for UEFA, CAS, FIFA, European Court of Justice, RSPB, etc. Most likely a plot by those Gable Endies…

     

    Scottish Football needs a strong and lawyered-up Arbroath.

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  20. redlichtie 17th November 2018 at 11:40

    '…Where’s the addresses for UEFA, CAS, FIFA, European Court of Justice, RSPB, etc. Most likely a plot by those Gable Endies…'

    __________________

    " An SFA spokesperson , who does wee homers for quite a new club, issued this statement:  ' This action shows the utter fearlessness and  personal integrity of the SFA, and  its  commitment to the impartial administration of justice and the overriding necessity of maintaining the highest standard of integrity in every aspect of Sport.

    Not even the powerful manager of an historic club, recognised as part of the fabric of Scottish society since 1878  and even with all his powerful friends in the SMSM at his beck and call, can hope to avoid condign punishment for whatever it was that he done(sic)" (by the way, whit did he dae?)

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  21. John Clark 17th November 2018 at 12:17 (by the way, whit did he dae?) ……………… Think he said TRFC are a new club…Automatic 8 match ban.enlightenedmailheart
    DCK is to appeal it and want’s a 9 match ban.

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  22. Been getting a few taxis recently and have found myself involuntarily listening to Clyde SSB.

    You would think by now they would have at least changed the name: there is a distinct lack of anything "Super" about the show.

    Anyway, I have developed an automatic response whenever Keevins' or Johnstone's voice comes over the airwaves: hackles come out and I typically swear loudly in the direction of the radio…followed by a swift apology to the wife and driver.

    I know, I should just ignore them but I just can't believe that they are still spouting their inane, unresearched p!sh after all these years.

    Those two should have been binned about 20 years ago, IMO.

    smiley

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  23. Portbhoy 17th November 2018 at 13:36

    "Since it's no' busy, another howler from keevins"

    Possibly the last football truth that the auld duffer ever uttered! 

    And what powerful influences could possibly have been required to change the  mind of so upright, steadfast, reliable gentleman of the Press?

    Will future generations shower honour and tribute upon him, and number him with Woodward and Bernstein, Galizia and Colvin and other such heroic journalists?

     

     

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  24. StevieBC 17th November 2018 at 14:07
    Anyway, I have developed an automatic response whenever Keevins’ or Johnstone’s voice comes over the airwaves: hackles come out and I typically swear loudly in the direction of the radio…followed by a swift apology to the wife and driver.

    I know, I should just ignore them but I just can’t believe that they are still spouting their inane, unresearched p!sh after all these years.
    ………………
    I stopped listening to Clyde SSB. When after this.
    https://mobile.twitter.com/ClusterOne2/status/1059549504905592832/photo/1
    DJ was all happy with glee when he told a caller “Let’s wait and see what Ally spends the £30 million on”

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  25. Portbhoy 17th November 2018 at 15:00

    '..A real journalist!!  [and link to Ian Archer]

    And that link prompted me to refer to this link

    https://rangerstaxcase.wordpress.com/2012/05/30/a-permanent-embarrassment-and-an-occasional-disgrace/comment-page-111/
     

    And I was prompted to do so in order  to remind myself and anybody else that RTC ( the person) and the RTC blog was not about Rangers Football Club and any religiously sectarian philosophy, but about Rangers Football Club as a club the Chairman of which cheated Scottish Football for a decade, and brought about the inglorious death of that club by his megalomaniac( as I would judge) fantasies , while his own business empire proved to be founded on sand.
    (but he made sure he was all right!)

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  26. I've just read this from Phil:

    https://philmacgiollabhain.ie/2018/11/17/the-benefit-of-gallows-humour-at-sevco/#comment-36798

    If Rangers International Football Club plc along with Elite Group.com go ahead with opening a store in the centre of Glasgow selling "RFC" branded merchandise in contravention of recent High Court judgements telling them that they must not then, will that company run the risk of being held in Contempt of Court with all of the attendant financial penalties that can be imposed by the court?

    If so then it would appear that a suicide beckons.

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  27. StevieBC 17th November 2018 at 14:07

     

    Been getting a few taxis recently and have found myself involuntarily listening to Clyde SSB.

    You would think by now they would have at least changed the name: there is a distinct lack of anything "Super" about the show.

    Anyway, I have developed an automatic response whenever Keevins' or Johnstone's voice comes over the airwaves: hackles come out and I typically swear loudly in the direction of the radio…followed by a swift apology to the wife and driver.

    I know, I should just ignore them but I just can't believe that they are still spouting their inane, unresearched p!sh after all these years.

    Those two should have been binned about 20 years ago, IMO.

    smiley

     

    You are missing the point. There is no need for research so long as there are two bitterly opposed sides to Glasgow football and I don't mean the Thistle v Queens derby (forget Clyde they legged it years ago but in the wrong direction, should have been EK)

    Derek is a paid propagandist by Rangers much in the same way that on Traynors show Andrew in Bridge of Weir was actually Allys pal but Traynor always managed to get him on the show.

    The BBC eventually woke up to the Traynor "I support Airdrie" bias shortly before he was forced off but in his last shows Cosgrove from the "most ill informed show on radio" had to babysit him on air.

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  28. I can think of no legitimate reason for a PLC paying personal legal bills for one of its shareholders. How could they possibly justify that.

    It could only be considered a dividend if he was getting it as a shareholder, which is not possible because if it was that then every other shareholder would be entitled to the same.

    It can only then be considered a payment, but a payment to him as an employee, not a shareholder. 

    I don't know if Phil is correct or not with regards King's legal bills being paid by the PLC (and indirectly the club as it is the PLC's only source of income) however if he is correct then a few questions occur.

     

    1, How is it reflected in the accounts.

    2, Is it taxable income in the UK, if so how is King declaring it.

    3, How are they justifying spending the shareholders' money in this way, or rather increasing the losses.

    If Phil is correct this is really rather significant. It looks like the board of the PLC, and King in particular, treating the shareholders' money as if it is their own.

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  29. Bogs Dollox 18th November 2018 at 00:47

    "….much in the same way that on Traynors show Andrew in Bridge of Weir was actually Allys pal but Traynor always managed to get him on the show."

    ____________________

    Not fifteen  minutes ago I listened to one James Boyle, the man credited with setting up BBC Radio Scotland (40 years ago, apparently).

    Let me quote an observation he made: "..the BBC is ill served by anything that damages it."

    Was there ever anything more damaging to BBC Radio Scotland than the eager readiness with which it suppressed, and continues to suppress,  any discussion of the ridiculous nonsense behind the propagation of the offensively untrue proposition that a football club which only came into being six years ago is the same club which legally ceased to be entitled to participate in Scottish professional football when, by reason of massive debts, it died in the market place-went bust into Liquidation?

    We know, now, as never before, that the BBC is not above a shabby thing , and has employees prepared to ignore truth and reality.

    And if the BBC can do that in the matter of local sport, what might it do in much more serious matters?

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  30. I was present today to see the unveiling of a statue to Celtic legend Bobby Lennox in his home town of Saltcoats.  Aside from Bobby, also present were Jim Craig, John Clark, Bertie Auld, Danny McGrain, Roy Aitken, George McCluskey, Peter Lawwell, John Grieg and Andy Cameron. All of those people took ample time to shake hands and pose for photos with anyone who asked.

    It was a lovely reminder of how respectful football can be, amidst the acrimony we sometimes seem permanently mired in, and a fitting tribute to one of the greatest players this country has ever produced. 

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

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  31. Celtic’s Annual General Meeting will be held at Celtic Park at 11.30 am on Wednesday 21 November 2018.
    ……………
    Will be an interesting AGM this year i think.

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  32. I notice some talk of a source of revenue for Scotland's youngest team by opening a store in St Enoch Square, Glasgow.

    Not sure how that's going to work out if they think the word "PARTIME" exists and that there should be an apostrophe in "WEEKEND SALE'S".

    Each to their own.

    Or to there owing.

     

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