The Case for a New SFA.

After making inquiries into progress on Resolution 12 to the Celtic AGM of 2013 there is little doubt in my mind that the SFA made a serious error in the process of UEFA licensing.

Here are some facts:

 

  1. UEFA does not issue licences to clubs who have due tax bills outstanding,
  2. UEFA require the SFA to satisfy themselves of a club’s eligibility for a licence and that clubs have provided proof no overdue tax payable exists,
  3. UEFA also require a club to tell the SFA and UEFA if, after the issue of a licence there are material changes in their circumstances which would affect their eligibility – including the situation at #1 above,
  4. UEFA awarded Rangers a licence to play in European competition in March 2011,
  5. In May 2011 Rangers received a tax bill, which they did not contest or appeal or agree a payment plan. The bill (which remains unpaid) was overdue by 30 June 2011,
  6. UEFA received no notice of this,
  7. Rangers did not lose their licence and in fact competed in both the Champions’ League and The Europa League in that season.

 

None of these facts are disputed (as far as is known) by anyone connected to the saga. What is in doubt, because the SFA won’t answer the question, is whether they received a copy of the tax bill and the May letter that accompanied it from Rangers or not.

If they did send it to the SFA, Rangers could reasonably argue that they did their bit and the SFA fell down on the job by failing to notify UEFA of their new unfavourable tax status.

If Rangers did not send it, then they had broken not only UEFA FFP rules but more importantly the trust amongst SFA members that full disclosure is honestly made in a self-certification process. The SFA in not carrying out their monitoring responsibilities properly and using the powers UEFA FFP gave them also broke that trust.

In either case, there is a systematic failure by the SFA to administer the sport effectively; either through a failure of trust, a failure of administration – or both.

Even worse, in the four years that have elapsed since this incident, it seems that nothing has been done to put matters right. The SFA have been very active in refusing to answer questions on the matter, particularly this one;

“How will you prevent it happening again?”

 Incredibly, up to now, no measures have been put in place to add rigour to the licensing process. Are they really saying that they think the process was carried out satisfactorily?

No they are saying nothing. Silence and denial, followed by silence and inaction.

So what is the point of this article? Let’s call out the elephant in the room right away – it is unequivocally not to have a go at Rangers. This is no longer really about Rangers at all, but about the SFA’s mal-governance of the game. Besides, clubs affected by this seeming failure on the part of the authorities (in that year Celtic, Dundee United and Hearts and Kilmarnock) are hardly likely to successfully sue a club now in liquidation (although small shareholders might take a different view with regard to the SFA’s conduct).

Nor am I seeking to find some retrospective punishment for the club (as far as I know sanctions are neither available retrospectively, nor useful in this case ) but to be aware that the question above urgently needs to be addressed if the status of football as a sport is to be maintained.

To the extent that this is about what has happened to Rangers, does anyone – no matter what club they owe their allegiance to – seriously consider that TRFC would NOT be in a better situation today had the SFA acted with propriety and applied their rules correctly in 2011/12?

With the kind of money on offer these days for entry into Europe, and the interdependent nature of the game, it seems fairly self-evident that trust is not enough to allow effective regulation, and that incompetent governance where money is the paramount consideration is unacceptable.

The SFA has long enjoyed a misconceived impression of its function as being that of a quasi-legal body, bestowing upon it a status of independence and aloofness from the partisan interest of the clubs. In the main, fans have largely bought into that myth. However the SFA is nothing of the kind.

It is in fact merely a cartel which is allowed to govern itself for its own benefit and is only accountable to the clubs that make up its membership, and not the fans. Check out the last sentences of almost any rule, where discretionary powers awarded to itself effectively render the rule worthless and unenforceable.

Literally, a nihilistic approach to governance

Maybe it is time the SFA scrapped the get out of jail discretionary clauses, and put some robust regulation in place to ensure the financial transparency of all clubs?

Even better, politicians are never slow to tell us of the importance of football to the social fabric of the country – in that case why not follow their own rhetoric, recognise that it cannot be allowed to self regulate in narrow self interest, and legislate to have football governed independently?

If I was a Rangers fan, I’d be thinking that the SFA’s failure to police the UEFA licencing issue helped accelerate the club’s demise – by making it easier to paper over the cracks.

If I was a Celtic, Hearts, Dundee United or Killie fan, well the consequences for them in terms of lost financial and competitive opportunities are fairly obvious.

Conclusion? The clubs can no longer be trusted to run the affairs of the industry themselves.

A new independent, accountable regulatory body (funded by the clubs) is the minimum we need to save the game in this country. It should comprise representatives of the clubs, the fans and other stakeholders – and it should have a holistic remit as its prime directive, whilst ensuring fair and equitable treatment of all clubs.

It can take decisions on the basis of what is good for the game without the baggage of self-interest, and without any west of Scotland institutionalised bias. Of course Scotland isn’t alone in this. Football is a powerful political force across the world, and as developments at FIFA over the past couple of years have demonstrated, it is institutionally corrupt. The clubs can no longer be allowed to run it as they see fit, and we need to begin a campaign which will ultimately convince the pay-at-the-gate fan of the truth of that.

The UEFA licensing issue is only a pebble in the sand of football incompetence and corruption, but it is a microcosm of what ails the game. The good of the sport, and not individual clubs, is paramount. The SFA cannot and will not deliver that.

The case for a new regulatory body is clear, and the status quo is not an option unless the death of the sport is deemed acceptable.

There is little doubt in my mind that unless regime change is effected, in a few decades there will be no regime .

Big Pink

Big Pink

Big Pink is John Cole; a former schoolteacher based in the West of Scotland, He is also a print and broadcast journalist who is engaged in the running of SFM . Former gigs include Newstalk 106, the Celtic View, and Channel67.

A Celtic fan, he is also the voice of our podcast initiative.

1,255 Comments
  1. upthehoops


    Nice to awaken from my slumbers to read the Perth gathering was a success. It’s the only nice thought I have given the quite appalling performance by Celtic last night. 

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  2. scottc

    scottc


    I have to say, I thoroughly enjoyed the gathering yesterday evening, even though, like Yakutsuki, I had to leave a tad early. With a projector and screen set up, I thought BP had a slide show in store for us, but he didn’t need one. The discussion was engaging and interesting. Nice to put faces (and names) to names.
    Thanks to Ryan G for the suggestion and to BP for working to make it happen and to everyone who was able to attend. I’d bet that the next one will be way busier.

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  3. Bill1903

    Bill1903


    Twitter was on fire last night with the news that the John James/Sit on Fence character was actually a Celtic fan in disguise!!!
    No idea if this is true this time but would be disappointed to be honest if it was

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  4. Gee69

    Gee69


    Yes, a good night at Perth last night. Well done to Big Pink for the organisation and to St. Johnstone for their hospitality.
    Lots of food for thought.
    One highlight though had to be the debunking of a certain SFM poster’s fantasy when it was revealed to him that the dream of his teenage years, Sally Carr of Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep fame, had been married to Chick Young. lol
    I only spoke to (and identified) a few of you, but I was the guy sitting in the back row beside Jim Craig.
    Here’s to the next one.

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  5. Danish Pastry


    Bravo on the the Perth gathering. Glad it was a success.

    Regarding Gerry M. of SSB, I felt he was and is, mostly, an ok host. I saw the exchange with Auldheid, but Gerry is not planning on rocking any boats. More’s the pity. Journalism is dying on its feet. Paid propagandists have taken over and will write any story, promote any cause, for dosh.

    A let-down from both Gerry and Hugh K. is the way they’ve talked down the Petrofac in the past week. Here’s a sponsor for Scottish football not attached to betting and gambling and Gerry was clueless as to what Petrofac actually did, while Hugh referred to the tournament as a mere ‘bauble’. With that kind of media backing, why would a sponsor embrace the game? For everyone outside the top tier the Petrofac is surely a cup clubs and their fans value and really want to win.

    I noticed Molde started with 9 Norwegians, 1 Finn, and 1 Swede. More or less a team of native Norwegians from a home-grown setup. I think I counted 5 Scots in Celtic’s starting line-up, I’m not sure if any of them came through Celtic’s own ranks. But it did strike me once again, as it did after Malmö away, that Scandinavian teams appear to be getting more value for money via their wage bill and in-house coaching. 
    This concludes the voting of the Danish jury 02

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  6. Allyjambo

    Allyjambo


    ianagain 22nd October 2015 at 8:28 pm # Allyjambo 22nd October 2015 at 7:15 pm # Things don’t seem to be getting any better, do they. Just read a twitter exchange between Auldheid and some guy, Gerry McCulloch. Is he some kind of hack?
    ————————————No he “works” for “Super” scoreboard. Has a journalist profile in the usual places. I remember sending away for an ABC minors badge. Didn’t make me a film critic.
    _______________________________

    Thanks for the update, Ian, explains his attitude perfectly. From what I’ve read about ‘Super’ scoreboard, I doubt any of their presenters have ever spent an hour (the length of time he claims it would take him to read Auldheid’s document) reading anything! Well, maybe the Beano 12

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  7. Allyjambo

    Allyjambo


    Auldheid 22nd October 2015 at 11:55 pm

    This Odyssey we’ve been on for the past four years has been a constant learning curve for us all, and I have learned it is a mistake to think ‘there’s more to’ any member of the SMSM, regardless of how they come across, they’re all cut from the same lazy, cowardly cloth!

    For anyone from the media to declare that he doesn’t have an hour of his time to do research, as simple as reading a document, is quite extraordinary in it’s lack of awareness of how it paints him as a ‘professional’.

    If he had the least bit self respect, he’d take a look at himself and wonder how he compares to yourself, and others, prepared to make an effort to reach for, and publish, the truth.

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  8. tykebhoy

    tykebhoy


    OT is it just my fading eyesight or do Auldheid’s posts move between the standard font size and smaller ones such that I struggle to read them.  And for the avoidance of doubt I do read them because they are usually very informative.

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  9. Allyjambo

    Allyjambo


    https://johnjamessite.wordpress.com/2015/10/22/shyster-rip-off-run-cic/

    Strange blog by John James! I’m not sure if the quotes come from TRFC/RIFC or not, but if they do, someone there (TRFC/RIFC) seems to have a screw loose!

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  10. tykebhoy

    tykebhoy


    Bill1903 23rd October 2015 at 7:45 am

    I suspect its the syndrome of post anything remotely derogatory about TRFC and RFC before them and you are a Rangers hater in the eyes of the majority.  Rangers hater then usually gets converted to Celtic supporter as supporters of all other teams love TRFC 14.

    I don’t suspect JJ of being a Celtic supporter but he definitely has an agenda against DCK and in promoting that agenda is trying to pull the blinkers off to reveal some things most of us Bampots have known for several years.  That is still something a majority of TRFC supporters don’t want to face.

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  11. neepheid

    neepheid


    Allyjambo 23rd October 2015 at 10:10 am #Auldheid 22nd October 2015 at 11:55 pm

    For anyone from the media to declare that he doesn’t have an hour of his time to do research, as simple as reading a document, is quite extraordinary in it’s lack of awareness of how it paints him as a ‘professional’.

    What struck me was the fact that he was in a discussion with a customer, or at least a potential customer. in a conversation being viewed by thousands of potential customers on a public forum.
    It seems to me that this “journalist” has lost all sense of where, in the end, his wages come from. Someone takes the considerable trouble to research a story and hand it to him on a plate, and his reaction is simply  a downright rude put-down. And this from someone in an “industry” that is currently circling the plughole. Small wonder the SMSM is heading down the drain.

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  12. Allyjambo

    Allyjambo


    neepheid 23rd October 2015 at 10:33 am

    “What struck me was the fact that he was in a discussion with a customer, or at least a potential customer. in a conversation being viewed by thousands of potential customers on a public forum.”
    ____________________________________

    I think he was more concerned with tweeting for the benefit of his employers’ target audience than appearing to be professional or neutral. He seemed to be attempting to fit in with that target audience’s mindset; and that, at least, he did achieve.          

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  13. easyJambo


    Allyjambo 23rd October 2015 at 10:25 am # https://johnjamessite.wordpress.com/2015/10/22/shyster-rip-off-run-cic/
    Strange blog by John James! I’m not sure if the quotes come from TRFC/RIFC or not, but if they do, someone there (TRFC/RIFC) seems to have a screw loose!
    ===================================
    The quotes came from an email to the members of the Rangers supporters groups including RST and RF, with an appeal that they merge.  I assume the desire is that they pool their resources, and “over invest” in the club by buying new shares.

    The Evening Times summarised the email in an article yesterday, or you can go onto Rangers Media and get the full text
    http://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/sport/rangers/13890519.Rangers_fans_urged_to_have_their_say_on_merging_supporters_groups_into_one_body_aimed_at_boosting_shareholding/
    <blockquote>
    Rangers fans urged to have their say on merging supporters groups into one body aimed at boosting shareholding 

    RANGERS supporters have been asked to vote on merging their numerous fan groups into one organisation capable of buying a significant block of shares and forcing out unwanted investors holding onto interests in the club.
     
    Emails were sent out on Thursday afternoon by the Rangers Fan Board, a club-supported committee briefly banned by the previous regime after releasing the minutes of a contentious meeting, to request feedback on a proposal geared towards forming the new collective body.
     
    Rangers First and the Rangers Supporters’ Trust currently hold around five per cent of stock. They will join together under the scheme with the hope being that a structure can be created to bring the likes of the Rangers Supporters Association, Rangers Assembly and Rangers Fighting Fund all under one umbrella.
     
    The new organisation will be independent of Rangers and will appoint a board of directors responsible for purchasing shares and generating income for the club and possessing expertise in public relations, marketing, finance, administration and law.
     
    Supporters have until 5pm on Monday, October 26, to make their thoughts known on the idea outlined.
     
    “Rangers First and Rangers Supporters Trust currently own over 5% of the shares in Rangers International Football Club PLC (RIFC),” read a statement.
     
    “Growing this shareholding is vital to the Rangers support to ensure that the club never again suffers as it has over the last few years.
     
    “There have been many shareholders in RIFC in recent years for whom the club’s interests do not come first. Rangers supporters will ensure that the Club’s interest and its success is always paramount.
     
    “To achieve this aim, it will be necessary to remove shareholders who do not share the same vision. Rangers supporters can also use the shares they have acquired to back those with the club’s best interests at heart.
     
    “Once this has been achieved, funds can be used to invest in the development of young players, to protect Ibrox, to recognise our history in an archive/museum and to develop our stadium.”
     
    The document sent to supporters has also offered suggestions on how sharebuying will work in future.
     
    “Rangers First 2014 CIC (Community Interest Company) will become the shareholding vehicle for the new group,” it reads. “Existing shareholdings will be consolidated into this vehicle and it will become the vehicle for share purchases for the ISDX listing and going forward.
     
    “Existing Rangers First contributors will continue to donate to this vehicle until after the ISDX listing and other supporters group members will be encouraged to become contributors to or transfer shares to the CIC.
     
    “The RST will proxy its shareholding votes to the CIC whilst consideration is given to a more permanent solution. All members of the RST’s Buy Rangers scheme will be asked to transfer their shareholding to this vehicle.
     
    “The community interest company owned by the RST will be used to collect donations being made by members for non-share buying purposes including protecting Ibrox.
     
    “Every Rangers Supporter will be welcomed as a member of the new group and the members and contributors to Rangers Supporters Trust and Rangers First will also become members
     
    “We would also want to create a structure to recognise the contribution of the Rangers Supporters Association and its member clubs as well as overseas supporters.
     
    Further consideration needs to be given to the mechanics of how this is set up and the transitional arrangements which will be required. “We want a clear voice for Rangers supporters going forward and to ensure it is heard and delivered to the club’s maximum advantage.”
    </blockquote>

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  14. woodstein

    woodstein


    Allyjambo 23rd October 2015 at 10:25 am
     
    http://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/sport/13890519.Rangers_fans_urged_to_have_their_say_on_merging_supporters_groups_into_one_body_aimed_at_boosting_shareholding/
     
    This is where this comes from, the email referred to in evening shark jump ( © The Clumpany) was posted on a bears den forum.
    As you say someone needs a screw driver

    EDIT easyJambo 23rd October 2015 at 10:47 am
    you type faster than I do. 🙂

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  15. Allyjambo

    Allyjambo


    easy and Woody, thanks for the updates.

    JJ continues to baffle, me at least, with his posts that omit reference to his sources. Your information does throw a different light on it all. It does look, though, like something Level5 has put together, and I suspect, contains things that will allow funds to move to where King wants them! It also smacks of rabble rousing.

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  16. Jingso.Jimsie


    Legally, can RIFC ‘compulsorily purchase’ shares from parties that they simply don’t like (or don’t support the current regime)? How else do they disenfranchise these shareholders?

    Is trying to unite the fans’ groups (and their money) under one banner a tacit admission that they simply cannot raise funds elsewhere & the rank & file fans are their last resort?

    And finally, did last night provide the QED of the Collins Conundrum?

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  17. easyJambo


    Jingso.Jimsie 23rd October 2015 at 11:12 am # Legally, can RIFC ‘compulsorily purchase’ shares from parties that they simply don’t like (or don’t support the current regime)? How else do they disenfranchise these shareholders?
    ============================
    You need to own 90% of the shares on issue before you can force the smaller shareholders to sell, so that isn’t going to happen.

    My reading of the full email is that the Board wants shot of any dissenting voices among the shareholder base.  However buying out these parties wouldn’t bring new cash into the club. It would be easier to achieve through dilution, by the issue of new shares to any existing RRM shareholders willing to underwrite a sale or to new RRM if they can pass a pre-emption motion.
     
    The fans organisations are already sitting on cash piles to buy shares, that they can’t currently do without a seller at a reasonable price. From the club’s point of view they would rather welcome the cash as an investment in a new share issue.
     
    RST runs the “Buy Rangers” scheme where fans provide lump sums to buy shares.  RF has been more successful and claims to have 13,875 fans contributing monthly to buy shares.  Even at an average of £10 a month, those numbers would generate more than the Foundation of Hearts does. The last share purchase by RF was in July when they bought approx 736K shares for around £200,000 (I don’t know the identity of the seller(s)).  It is now seven and a half months since the regime change and delisting. If RF’s contributions have held up at the claimed numbers, then they will have taken in the best part of £1M and only spent £200K. 
     
    The most recent “John James” blog covers the Board’s positioning in a way that I would agree with.  The Board of a company is meant to be accountable to the shareholders.  This proposal seems to want the shareholders to be accountable to the Board.

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  18. Jingso.Jimsie


    Thanks eJ…

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  19. tykebhoy

    tykebhoy


    easyJambo 23rd October 2015 at 11:24 am

    Was going to question the figures there but then I realised you aggregated two purchases one in July and one in August and we aren’t going to argue over £30K.  Presumably they try to buy towards the end of a month but couldn’t find sellers in September unless they changed tack
    http://lmmx.co.uk/companies/profile/rangers-international-foofball-club-plc/

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  20. The Rangers nil? Who missed the penalty?

    The Rangers nil? Who missed the penalty?


    I really enjoyed the Perth get-together last night. Thanks are due to Ryan for the idea, BP for the organisation, and all in attendance for their contributions.
    Several things emerged from the meeting, not least of all being the sterling work being done by BP, Tris and the mods, and the number of plates that have to be kept spinning.
    Chapeaux, chaps!
    I was thoroughly impressed, though not in the least bit surprised, by the amount of knowledge and expertise in evidence in the room, and the overwhelming commitment to affecting the way in which the sport that we all love is administered, regulated and policed. And that was only 20 of us. BP told us that the site is currently registering between 10,000 and 12,000 daily page views (130.000 on Liquidation Day!!). The potential is huge.  Let’s hope they don’t all turn up at the next meeting, though!
    P.S.   At the start of the meeting I asked folk not to give updates on the Celtic match as I was intending watching it “as live” this morning. BP suggested that knowing the score beforehand might give me the option of not watching it at all. Oh how I wish I had listened to the man.

    Big Pink.
    You asked for feedback. Should I PM you or post here?

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  21. Big Pink


    The Rangers nil? Who missed the penalty? 23rd October 2015 at 11:37 am

    _______________________________________________________________

    Feedback anyway you think best. On here is great but PMing fine too. Could maybe think of putting a suggestions page together too. On the todo list 🙂

    Someone last night also had the idea of creating a register of the blog to be help privately with myself and Tris. The register would include your area of expertise, so that we could call on you for advice or assistance if necessary. It would optionally include your actual name, address and a wee pic so we could recognise you if we have another meeting.

    A final thought. Should have had name badges last night so we could all have identified our site monikers and actual names for ease of introduction. That will be remedied in future.

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  22. ianagain

    ianagain


    Allyj JJ alludes to a bizarre prospectus put out last night by Rangers fan board a proposed new idea to fleece the fans in an entirely new way.
    Read his prior blog.

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  23. Allyjambo

    Allyjambo


    This latest move, encouraging supporters to buy up shares, reminds me of the rescue mission Hearts begged their supporters to embark upon in the run-up to administration. They were, at least, honest in making it clear that the funds raised in the share issue would only keep the club going until the end of that season.

    I realise there is a difference here, with the fans being asked to buy up existing shares, which I’m sure many still don’t realise won’t mean cash going to the club, but I suspect that somewhere along the line that money may well be diverted directly to the club with a hasty change to the constitution of the associations, or even built into the new constitution of the proposed amalgamation!?

    We know from our number cruncher contributors that it is approaching empty biscuit tin time, and this is what reminds me of the time the Hearts’ begging bowl came out, so this latest move suggests to me that it’s desperation time and the last throw of the dice. Perhaps the last throw before King has to ‘overinvest’ his own money, but that may be a throw too far for him (whether he has the money or not). Regardless of whether or not the associations can buy shares, they will hope to increase the cash within these funds and have it ready to ‘lend’ to the club should/once it becomes necessary.

    All speculation, I know, but that email smacks of desperation dressed up as an ‘opportunity for fans’ and a reminder of who the real enemy (non-bear shareholders) is!

    Just a thought, couldn’t possibly have foundation, but:

    Could someone have a fiendish plan to have buyers looking for large parcels of shares, pushing the price up, when, lo and behold, the fiendish planner advises his broker to sell his shares in RIFC? No, couldn’t be, that would be manipulating the market!

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  24. blu


    Allyjambo 23rd October 2015 at 12:05 pm                 

    Advice to RST and RF – don’t buy those 11869505 shares that are now on offer.

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  25. wottpi


    easyJambo 23rd October 2015 at 11:24 am

    Don’t forget that the Ranger Fighting Fund also gets a mention and they could be sitting on £0.5m

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2760388/Rangers-Fans-Fighting-Fund-not-500-000-Ibrox-assurances-given.html.

    I see nothing wrong with trying to get the fans groups to unite and get more involved with the running and financing of the club. If that generates cash then all the better.
    The problem is that currently there is no clear and transparent McCann or Budge type plan that shows what DCK and others are going to do with regard to their contribution and how this whole exercise will pan out in the future.
    Whatever they have in mind may all work out swimmingly for the football club in the long term but until their is openness and transparency flows out of the Blue Room I would be very skeptical.

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  26. tykebhoy

    tykebhoy


    OT
    More on the SoF/JJ being a Celtic fan.  I think someone mentioned that PZJ had stepped away from outing the real identity of JJ.  Well it appears he hasn’t.  In a blog called 

    the-tale-of-mr-hyde-and-dr-jekyll-or-john-james-revealed

    (which is WordPress but I’m not giving the full link) the blogger, John Stevens, claims to have had verified the email address SoF used as his login to RSL (I suspect data protection breaches have been involved in that).  He has then found a twitter account which he claims to be using the same email address.  His proof, he tried to reset the password, and was presented with a partly obfuscated email address he claims to be the same.

    He’s an enterprising chap this PZJ/John Stevens.  Some will remember he was the driving force behind the state aid claims that ecobhoy trekked through to thoroughly disrepute.  I suspect he has the morals of a TJ Hooker but doesn’t worship a hero called Bill Shatner.

    In case you are wondering about the bold its my not too cryptic attempt at identifying the Captain who shares the same name as what PZJ clains is  the alternate twitter account of SoF/JJ

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  27. The Rangers nil? Who missed the penalty?

    The Rangers nil? Who missed the penalty?


    Big Pink
    Some thoughts for the next meeting (and I sincerely hope that there will be a next meeting).
    One of the reasons Ryan gave for having the evening (and certainly one of the reasons I wanted to attend) was that it would enable posters to put names to faces. Last night, my only mechanism for finding out who people were was to approach complete strangers with the line “Hi. I’m Rangers nil? – who missed the penalty? Who are you?”, immediately upon arrival. While I’m quite comfortable with that, I suspect that some might have been less so.
    The original programme of “an hour of discussion, anecdote, and Q&A, followed by a few hours of chat and socialising/sparring” was reversed for some reason (catering restrictions?) but the programme as planned, starting with a quick-fire “What’s your pseudonym” introduction round would have meant that the many excellent contributors from the floor would have been identifiable.
    While the wearing of name(pseudonym) badges might not have been universally popular, and wouldn’t have helped identify contributors from the floor, they would have been very useful during the mingling session, during which the tea/coffee/sandwiches (forget the soup) were available.
    Retaining the originally planned running order would also have meant that those participants who had to leave early (I would liked to have had a few moments with the insolvency lawyer) wouldn’t have missed any of the “business”, and would have been available for at least some of the “chat”.
    In my previous life I organised and ran training courses, so I would be happy to lend my expertise (that’s a laugh!), when the next session comes around.

    Edit.
    Didn’t read your reply fully before posting. Ignore all of the above, with the exception of the offer of help next time.

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  28. Corrupt official

    Corrupt official


    “Rangers First 2014 CIC (Community Interest Company) will become the shareholding vehicle for the new group,” it reads. “Existing shareholdings will be consolidated into this vehicle and it will become the vehicle for share purchases for the ISDX listing and going forward.”
           ———————————————————————————————–
       What ISDX listing would that be?
    This looks like a straight forward scam to me. The fans buy the shares, and get a wee certificate above the mantle-piece, and the Sevco board get the power of the shares, or at least control of the block vote through controlling the CIC Co board, made up of blazer chasers.
        Didn’t they have a “fan elected” voice previously, that was disbanded, and replaced by a board elected “voice”……It seems the Delorean has its dials set for Roman Ampitheatre again.
        

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  29. wottpi


    Just a wee thought after Celtic’s woeful defensive display last night.

    Domestic goals leaked is 9 in 12 games compared with Euro leakage of 12 in 9 games, with 11 of those coming in the last 5 outings.

    It seems clear to date that a fairly well organised and disciplined Euro team has the skills and wherewithal to duff up the Scottish Champions. Last season’s showing, even with Van Djik in there, wasn’t any better.

    Clearly a lot of work is needed both at Celtic and other clubs if we are to make progress in Europe in the future given the standard and perfromance of even the ‘diddy’ Euro clubs.

    Which makes me think that a very large magic hat and one full of cash will be required if DCK believes Euro riches are just around the corner.

    T’Rangers were easily dismantled by St Johnstone and similarly Hearts have shipped plenty this year on their return to the top flight despite trying to bring in some new talent at the back.

    A long journey ahead for all Scottish clubs if we can’t get to grips with the basics.

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  30. tamjartmarquez

    tamjartmarquez


    The Cat NR1 20th October 2015 at 8:47 pm #scottc on October 20, 2015 at 3:57 pm
    FC United of Manchester leading the way again. Just like the living wage
    http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/fc-united-reject-bbc-request-6667241#rlabs=11%20rt$sitewide%20p$10==================================================That is a brilliant read.TV has ruined top flight football in England and is doing its best to do the same in Scotland with the ridiculous kick off times.Cup football is now a farce on both sides of the border, with games played weeks apart on some occasions, and the shambolic hunt the the draw.It’s nice to see FC UoM making a stand for the match going supporter. Newcastle v NCFC at 4pm on Sunday anyone?
    There is life in football though, and last week I took advantage of the international break to watch Barnet v Accrington Stanley (who are they? :-} ) in order to recomplete the English 92. There were plenty of other fans doing the same, and I bumped into a couple of other City fans and my Leeds supporting mate spotted another chap he knew from Elland Road.As the article said, an insight into the matchday experience can easily be obtained by going to a match, preferably at 3pm on a Saturday or 7.45 midweek.By the way Accrington Stanley are not related to either Accrington FC (the only founder members of the Football League no longer in existance) or the club of the same name that was in the league in the 60s. Needless to say, Sky TV managed to get it wrong during the 125 anniversary season, although that is not at all surprising as they have history of confusing clubs with similar names.Veering back on topic to Scottish football, is there a 42 Club in Scotland?
    ======
    I too enjoyed last night, and was impressed with the fire that burns for justice and the desire to safeguard the sport that we all love, Scottish football. That an aim of the blog is to attract those of the blue persuasion is so important. It is unfortunate that whenever anyone of a blue persuasion sticks there head above the parapet they are forced to admit fault/ acceptance of guilt for Rangers wrongdoing. I personally, believe that all ‘decent’ Rangers supporters know that they are a new Club, and know that the ongoing flustercuck is a mirage. In fact anyone that stumbles on SFM is in search of a more balance viewpoint than is available on the sweary sites.
    I know this to the case from professional supporters of that club and the anger/ defence mechanism that is triggered when fitba is discussed. I merely say I don’t accept the continuity myth. Currently working/ living in England and never having lived in the west coast bubble, I maybe have it easy. I reckon they might appreciate, and benefit from, the MSM laying all bare. I believe Rangers* fans, as those in attendance last night really need this watershed moment so that we can all move on. I believe the FC of Manchester story, highlighted by scottc, and the actions of those involved at that new club are inspirational, and indeed a rallying call for all supporters that all is not well with the game. 
    It is the governance of the game in Scotland that concerns me most.  The clubs and authorities must awaken, hold their hands up, and ensure that the wilful malfeasance is not allowed to happen again, is not encouraged/ rewarded. Lets not forget the Falkirk stadium, the various programme writers and Jim Spence, who have been shamelessly hung out to dry by there bosses for telling the truth. 

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  31. easyJambo


    tykebhoy 23rd October 2015 at 1:12 pm #
    ———————————————–
    I hope that John Stevens’ (@pzj_1) identification skills have improved since his last effort just 3 days ago.

    Brogan Rogan Trevino ‏@BroganRoganTrev Oct 20
    @pzj_1 Hi, It has come to my attention that you somehow believe that @sitonfence and I are one and the same. Sorry nothing to do with me!

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  32. neepheid

    neepheid


    easyJambo 23rd October 2015 at 1:46 pm
    I hope that John Stevens’ (@pzj_1) identification skills have improved since his last effort just 3 days ago.
    =========================
    I had a look at John Stevens (PZJ1) blog yesterday.

    The most loathesome aspect of this repulsive reptile’s so-called outing of John James was the posting of a  screenshot from the facebook page of a middle-aged lady from Greenock, alleged to be the sister of “John James”, giving her full name and surname, her place of work, a photograph of her, and a comment to the effect that the photo of his sister sitting at Celtic Park “smiling” was proof positive that JJ is in fact a closet Celtic fan. The photo was of her sitting alone in a stadium with green seats, whether CP or not I have no way of telling. She was, of course, smiling for the camera.
    I have just seen that this part of his blog has now been edited out, but I really hope someone has kept a screenshot. Utterly contemptible vermin, that is as high as I can rate this lamentable excuse for a human being.

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  33. tykebhoy

    tykebhoy


    I have just seen that this part of his blog has now been edited out, but I really hope someone has kept a screenshot. Utterly contemptible vermin, that is as high as I can rate this lamentable excuse for a human being.

    Unless I am mistaken it is still there Neepheid (I retrieved the page and did a full refresh).  The lady in question could just as easily be at Wimbledon.  I also wonder how he managed to make the connection given both the surname and forname of the person outed as John James are both quite common and he seems to have picked a random person of the same name on linkedin (there are 148 in the UK alone).

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  34. neepheid

    neepheid


    Sorry folks, I got it wrong. The reference to JJ’s alleged sister is still there on John Stevens’ blog. Here is the relevant paragraph-

    He also claimed that he came from a Rangers family and had a Rangers background. But that also appears to be a lie as below you will see his sister smiling at a visit to Celtic Park

    This is followed by a link to the woman’s facebook profile, giving full details.

    I am posting no links to this utter filth, I just truly hope that this woman does not suffer as a result of this degenerate moron’s actions..

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  35. redlichtie


    Just a quick word of thanks to BP for putting together last night’s meet-up. I was at a meeting earlier in the day where the guy in charge noted how we had successfully flexed the agenda to meet the demands of debate and audience input i.e. that we had grossly overrun.
    The format last night certainly moved from formal to organic with ease….. I was getting concerned though after around 75 mins that BP was still on his intro…… 02
    More seriously, it was a great opportunity to meet fellow posters and discuss a variety of subjects in an extremely constructive environment.
    Look forward to the next one….
    Scottish Football needs more nice guys like Jim Craig (Cairney) who also really know their stuff.

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  36. StevieBC

    StevieBC


    Good to see the social event went well, and am sure that many, like myself, would love to be able to attend future events.
    And for those who left early…did BP give you any homework ?! 09
    ==========
    And my valuable contribution for today is: where’s Waldo…I mean, where’s King ?
    If I was a TRFC ST holder – or even a slightly interested SFA blazer – I would be very keen to know where he is and what he is doing with respect to steadying the Ibrox ship.
    Doesn’t seem to be much interest currently in the SMSM either ?
    Have they all just got fed up with King and and his own ‘moonbeams’, [(c) Minty] ?

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  37. The Cat NR1

    The Cat NR1


    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/34611533
    The above article under the header “Fifa: ‘Deep concern’ over Sheikh Salman presidency bid” contains the following paragraph and when I first read it I thought it said SFA instead of FIFA and they were going mention the 5 WA.

    “In a statement, Fifpro said, “A clean break from the past is essential for Fifa to climb out of the toxic pit which continues to produce serious accusations of corrupt behaviour on almost a daily basis. At the same time, there is no doubt the present mayhem has left Fifa morally bankrupt.” (Fifpro is the global players’s union rather than a video game, as I first thought.)

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  38. StevieBC

    StevieBC


    The Cat NR1 23rd October 2015 at 5:05 pm #…
    “In a statement, Fifpro said, “A clean break from the past is essential for Fifa to climb out of the toxic pit which continues to produce serious accusations of corrupt behaviour on almost a daily basis. At the same time, there is no doubt the present mayhem has left Fifa morally bankrupt.” (Fifpro is the global players’s union rather than a video game, as I first thought.)
    ======================
    So that would be the generally pampered, self-indulgent, over-paid players – with their dodgy agents – insisting that FIFA cleans up its act ?!
    World football / European football is really a joke now.
    The paying punters saw through this shambles many years ago – especially wrt FIFA.  
    And in addition to implementing proper governance with new faces, at some point there has to be a major correction in players’ wages – and ticket prices – before it’s all too late, IMO.
    The problems associated with corrupt football governance – e.g. at FIFA, UEFA or the SFA – will be irrelevant if nobody is paying to watch football in the future.

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  39. wottpi


    I know the thumbs up / down thing isn’t a marker for everyone on the site but I really am struggling with 6 folks giving a thumbs down to the suggestion that Scottish clubs, including our Champions, need to get a grip so that we can compete with (and hopefully take care of) European teams like Molde who until the draw I had never even heard of.

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  40. fishnish

    fishnish


    wottpi 23rd October 2015 at 6:02 pm #
    I know the thumbs up / down thing isn’t a marker for everyone on the site but I really am struggling with 6 folks giving a thumbs down
    ——————————————————————————————–
    A discussion about the state of Scottish fitba would be ok for most, I would think, but the thumbs down probably reflects the Celtic-centric nature of the post.
    If you’d posted it days ago, weeks ago… or next month it may have been met more kindly.
    I believe Celtic were defeated, (I still don’t know the score), but I bet there would have seemed no need for the post, if a draw/win had been the result?

    Forebye, I think we’ve had similar concerns recently wrt the Narional Team.

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  41. grecian urn


    OT next week I end my work contact and it will almost certainly be my last (I,m 64 not much chance anyone giving me a job at that age ). Anyhoo, I have been looking at monthly outgoings and done the usual, binned Sky, cheaper bottle of plonk on a Friday etc. and briefly thought of cancelling monthly donation to SFM, then thought what else can give me so much education and feeling of fellowship against corruption for less than the price of a pint per month. So, for me it,s as you were.

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  42. Jingso.Jimsie


    I’m rather curious about Mr. Warburton’s appeals for protection for not just his ‘flair’ players, but also every other teams.

    With respect (to use one of your favourite phrases) Mark, that wouldn’t be an open  criticism of the wielders of the Acme Thunderers, as that’s against SFA regulations? 

    I wonder if the Compliance Officer watches STV?

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  43. StevieBC

    StevieBC


    The Clumpany’s latest blog is a good read, and about Doncaster in particular.
    Reading the legally qualified Doncaster’s comments flagged up parallels in my head with the legally qualified Hillary Clinton’s public utterances.
    Both confidently mouth off in public about their own view of the world from within the safety of their own wee bubble: no mistakes admitted, no apologies given, no self-awareness – and how dare you question my competence / veracity / etc…  
    Doncaster must be in line for another SPFL bonus after this latest public performance.  08

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  44. parttimearab


    Interesting analysis from UEFA on the state of the Scottish game
    http://sport.stv.tv/football/clubs/aberdeen/1331176-the-real-state-of-the-scottish-game-how-our-top-flight-compares-to-europe/
    Lots of detail and will want to look at the original report 
    Still as Neil Doncaster is delighted with the findings my initial suspicion is that we’re ******
    http://sport.stv.tv/football/clubs/celtic/1331259-neil-doncaster-report-shows-scottish-clubs-amongst-best-run-in-europe/?

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  45. smartie1947

    smartie1947


    grecian urn 23rd October 2015 at 7:03 pm # OT next week I end my work contact and it will almost certainly be my last (I,m 64 not much chance anyone giving me a job at that age ). Anyhoo, I have been looking at monthly outgoings and done the usual, binned Sky, cheaper bottle of plonk on a Friday etc. and briefly thought of cancelling monthly donation to SFM, then thought what else can give me so much education and feeling of fellowship against corruption for less than the price of a pint per month. So, for me it,s as you were.

     I sympathise with your current financial plight and commend you in maintaining your monthly donation to SFM. If only a good Samaritan could come along and help out with this expense.
    He could put it down as “Owed to a Grecian Urn”
    Apologies in advance.

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  46. alzipratu


    Not sure this was picked up by anyone else…

    ***Off-message alert, off-message alert***
    By Clive Lindsay, BBC Sport, 21 October 2015″What would Back To The Future writer Bob Gale have predicted for Scottish football had he made a movie in the 1980s about how the game might look in 2015?…Graeme Souness’ Rangers revolution, which was to fuel the Scottish transfer market and the Ibrox club’s long-term financial downfall, was yet a year away.”
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/34594633
    ***Cue the outrage***

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  47. John Clark


    Jingso.Jimsie 23rd October 2015 at 7:40 pm #
    ‘….the Acme Thunderers.’
    ______________
    On my house key-ring hangs the ‘Acme Thunderer’ issued to my dad in 1946, when, fresh out of Erskine Hospital, he joined Glasgow Corporation Tramways as one of the (3%?) quota of war-wounded ex-servicemen that Local Authorities were theoretically expected,if not required, to employ.
    As a wee boy visiting Parkhead Depot ( now for the chop, I read recently) I remember his three shift-mates:one had lost an arm, the second was blinded in one eye and had severe burns scars on his face, the third had been deafened, and my dad was minus a leg, with deep shrapnel wounds in the thigh of his other leg, and a bullet wound in his upper left arm. ( Who prates about  ‘Armed Forces day’ with any arrogant ‘proprietorial’ air?)
    Surely the mighty ‘Acme Thunderer’ has not been so reduced in status as to become standard issue for our referees?
    I am distraught!
    Can they all be men of integrity enough to be allowed anywhere near, let alone use, such a definitive, authoritative instrument and arbiter of truth? Two blasts of which would stop a runaway tram from a couple of hundred yards!

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  48. ianagain

    ianagain


    The Acme Thunderer is alive and well and in use all around the railways, certainly on oor wee bit in Wessex.
    One blast step out lads.
    2 Move it

    3 You will likely never hear the 3rd.

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  49. John Clark


    ianagain 24th October 2015 at 12:22 am #
    ‘….The Acme Thunderer is alive and well and in use all around the railways…
    3 You will likely never hear the 3rd.’
    _______
    a) that’s very cheering news…
    b) but even if the name is the same, is it, can it be, the same whistle?03

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  50. ianagain

    ianagain


    alzipratu 23rd October 2015 at 10:35 pm # Not sure this was picked up by anyone else…
    ***Off-message alert, off-message alert*** By Clive Lindsay, BBC Sport, 21 October 2015″What would Back To The Future writer Bob Gale have predicted for Scottish football had he made a movie in the 1980s about how the game might look in 2015?…Graeme Souness’ Rangers revolution, which was to fuel the Scottish transfer market and the Ibrox club’s long-term financial downfall, was yet a year away.”http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/34594633 ***Cue the outrage***

    Cue Much Kudos Clive Lindsay Well done that man.

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  51. ianagain

    ianagain


    ianagain 24th October 2015 at 12:22 am #‘….The Acme Thunderer is alive and well and in use all around the railways…3 You will likely never hear the 3rd.’_______a) that’s very cheering news…b) but even if the name is the same, is it, can it be, the same whistle?

    Naw everyone blaws it different.
    My favourite lookout a big 6’8 Portsmouth supporter can deafen you from 300 yards I swear.
    Mines a bit gleaming still, only been about for 12 years.

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  52. ianagain

    ianagain


    However  on the substantial point.
    b) but even if the name is the same, is it, can it be, the same whistle?
    I’m finding JJs commentaries ever more intriguing. Never mind the maths, his principle is undying and has been for years now. DCK is a convicted criminal with a record and he has been accepted by the SFA.
    He is spurned in his home country. Spurned by the markets here.
    Mr sit on fence is kind of beyond the point of arguing OC/NC and is saying to the unhearing masses that they are about to gift a slab of money to DCK without a thought as to the why for.
    The information he disseminates is the best antidote to the SMSM and L5 spin in the last 4 years.
    Will anyone listen?
    Do they listen to Phil?

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  53. ianagain

    ianagain


    I Must stop talking to myself
    Write this out a hundred times and go tae bed.
    OK Mrs 06Ianagain

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  54. cmontheshire


    A little belated from me …… but a massive thank you to all at the Perth meeting for making my 5 hour drive from Yorkshire so worthwhile. The old eyesight is not what it used to be and the roadtrip was akin to a voyage through yon stars in Star Trek, with the speeding side blur now just coming to a stop. Unfortunately, my wife is now in focus with a large list of to-dos in hand and I used to look forward to Saturdays too!
    However, that said, what a splendid bunch of really decent, open-minded, informed football fans I encountered. Truly heartwarming! Jim Craig is a very special football man. More of his ilk in the corridors of power and our game would be sorted in no time!
    Special thanks to BP for being such a good listener and for taking on the onerous task of pulling all things together, for I am sure he really has nothing else to be doing in his life!!!
    Bless you all for all you give and do with your talents on behalf of this so important enterprise of ours.
    Hope to meet up with lots more of you in future.

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  55. Big Pink


    New post up.
    BP

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