Monday, June 21, 2021

Fergus McCann v David Murray

How Celtic Turned the Tables on their Glasgow Rivals by Stephen O Donnell:
A Review by Auldheid.

Stephen’s previous publication, Tangled Up In Blue provided a detailed history of the rise and fall of Glasgow Rangers FC PLC from 1872 until their demise in 2012. Clearly a lot of research had been done to cover the period in such detail and his follow up publication Fergus McCann v David Murray etc carries on with that tradition. It is a smorgasbord of a book with many different issues succulently served up in its 350 pages.

It tells of events under David Murray’s tenure at Ibrox which began in November 1988 and ended in May 2011 when he left Craig Whyte holding the rope that became a noose just under a year later in April 2012 when Whyte was found guilty of bringing Scottish football into disrepute whilst Murray claimed he was duped.

Readers of the book will come to the conclusion that if anyone did the duping it was David Murray and it wasn’t just Craig Whyte he duped but Scotland’s national game. If ever Murray were to be tried for crimes against Scottish football then this book would be cited as evidence.

It was against the background of David Murray’s tenure at Rangers that Fergus McCann first arrived on the scene in April 1989 with proposals to inject £17M of New Capital into Celtic that the Celtic Board rejected as per minutes:

Proposals put forward by Fergus McCann to provide finance for various capital expenditures were unanimously rejected by the Directors’; and then again in August of the same year: ‘Mr McCann’s latest proposals were discussed and it was hoped that this was a final discussion on the subject. Latest proposals were rejected by Directors.
Fergus later returned to the fray and the chapter on how he was successful in ousting the Board in 1994 is an informative read, particularly if in that period single parenting cares took precedence over caring for Celtic.

I was amused reading the tale of discontent aimed at the old Board after a Ne’erday 4-2 defeat to Rangers in January 1994 when a bemused Walter Smith was watching the hostility aimed at the Celtic Directors box, one fan in the main stand screamed at him, ‘What are you looking at, it’s got fuck all to do with you.”

For me anyway there were a few “not a lot of people know that” moments like that in the book.
The contrast between Fergus McCann’s and David Murray’s style was immediately evident, but the impact of Fergus’s shorter tenure from 1994 to 1999 became more than evident after McCann left and the author does not miss the role servile journalists played and hit the wall for turning Celtic supporters against McCann during his tenure, whilst they dined on Murray’s succulent lamb. A role that in the end helped bring about Rangers end, but not the culture of servility when covering the activity of Rangers FC PLC successor club from 2012.

Sky TV get it in the neck too and if David Murray played the part of Colonel Mustard in killing Scottish football through his financial recklessness and duplicity, Sky are the lead pipe whose toxicity still dictates the nature of the current state of play.( I said it was a Smorgasbord)

Fergus kind of did what it said on the tin. In his case a tin of nippy sweeties, but it was interesting to read about his early years when even then he was described as “a cheeky upstart” but his “idiosyncrasies” and appearance under a bunnet, disguised a sharp if impatient business mind where for him getting straight to the point was akin to procrastination.

So too has Murray’s early years been covered including his rejected attempt to buy Ayr Utd, a rejection by Ayr Directors, who considered Murray was too hot headed and most volatile, that infuriated him.

Their conclusion that he was trying to get Ayr United on the cheap with only £125k of his own money involved was an indicator of his strategy of using other people’s money to invest and not his own. Other people including unsuspecting taxpayers to a tune of £50 million or so.

As you follow the narrative of both Fergus McCann and David Murray and the events that surrounded them, you end up wondering how so many could have been fooled for so long by one guy, but when you have the Scottish media in your pocket it was difficult to separate fact from fiction during the tenure of both. You also wonder how Murray remains a Knight of the Realm since.

Luckily for Celtic Fergus knew business fact from PR fiction and avoided the illusion in which Celtic’s main rivals continue to struggle to this day.

The great pity is that few, if any of the Scottish main stream media will even give this book a mention, because if you don’t write about it, it never happened, except it did and this book is proof.

I therefore recommend anyone interested in the future of our game buys it and asks, is it not now time to revisit the purpose of Scottish football?

Auldheid

Auldheid
Celtic fan from Glasgow living mostly in Spain. A contributor to several websites, discussion groups and blogs, and a member of the Resolution 12 Celtic shareholders' group. Committed to sporting integrity, good governance, and the idea that football is interdependent. We all need each other in the game.

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1240 COMMENTS


  1. Highlander
    “I was not apprised by Hearts’ QC of the legal technicalities involved in the recent court case and subsequent arbitration, but was simply showing some contrition for the actions brought against the promoted clubs.”

    I totally accept that but your comment –

    “I can only assume there were sound legal reasons for pursuing that particular avenue, and that the desired result would have seen the SPFL being forced into confirming those promotions while simultaneously cancelling relegations.”

    appears to be an acceptance that there could be good reason to drag the other teams into the fray. Also, you are intelligent enough to realise that the only positive outcome for the relegated teams would be to win what their submission was written to achieve, no promotion of the teams named.

    I must make one more point –

    ” I don’t have any insider knowledge as to why Ann Budge exercised her right to change her mind on the permanence or otherwise of league reconstruction”

    but you speak with apparent authority on why the SPFL and the other clubs relegated your team.

    These are extraordinary times and in all spheres of our life the proportion of losers to winners has increased radically. Most have no way of turning things around and are left trying to make the best of a bad lot. So it is with the relegated teams. My point has always been that your club’s executive has not acted fully in the best interests of the club. She had the opportunity to persuade the other clubs to enter into a reconstruction but immediately alienated one section by introducing conditions. It was probably an impossible task anyway but she guaranteed it would be so.
    I think a great deal of the belief in Budge from the Hearts fans is based around her involvement with bringing the club out of administration and rightly so. Unfortunately, it is blinding them to the damage she has been doing. The persisting with the failing Levein involvement not just for one season too long but many. The over running costs of the new stand, a project the management exercise that was awarded to a family member who had no experience in a venture of that scale. Through it all a number of dates for hand over to FOH were put back not because the finance was not available to the foundation but because Budge wanted to put in place certain things first. Even now she is saying that she will not hand the club over until Covid is no longer a threat. This might be a sensible move but surely it is one for FOH to make, hopefully after communicating with the members.
    I think it is now time for Hearts supporters to believe that they have show enough gratitude to Budge and to recognise that it is time to move on. Reconstruction would have kept Hearts and the others in the appropriate divisions but its failure should fall as much at your executives door as the doors of those that you feel are the ones to blame.


  2. No EDIT anymore so. Highlander, i like your posts when you post. But you have to look at the scottish game not make comparisons with other leagues. Remember when the games were stopped in scotland. Remember when players were only allowed to return to trainning but no contact. Remember when players could start to get tested. Remember some clubs could not even get that right.Remember the cost of all this to the scottish game.
    Doncaster did an interview with sky on May 20 explaining that there was just no time to get games played. He has done a few other interviews since then still explaining how games could not get played. I would have loved to see celtic go on and secure a points tally or a record goals scored, but for health and safety reasons there was just no time or money to do it.


  3. I wonder if Steve Carson, who has been named as the successor of Donalda MacKinnon as the Director of BBC Scotland will allow free discussion on air of the ‘Big Lie’, or whether he will follow the established policy of the last 8 years and allow the BBC to carry propagating the untruth that TRFC is somehow the RFC of 1872?
    No, I don’t really wonder!
    He’d never have got the appointment unless Ken MacQuarrie believed him to be a safe pair hands.


  4. It may be that we are about to see the sense of the lower leagues’ shortened seasons. Yesterday the Chief Health Officer in England stated, in a rare piece of honesty at Westminster, that we are probably seeing that the limit to return to “normality” has been reached. It kinda shows that steps taken in Scotland were more realistic but it also shows that if choices are to be made as to which crowd gatherings are to be allowed then what chance that football is one that won’t. Could the game here survive that?

    Perhaps Hearts supporters will have the last laugh.


  5. reasonablechap 1st August 2020 at 08:00
    Rangers don’t like that and want some real political power but can’t get a foot in the door.
    …………..
    Was Stewart Robertson not on the SPFL board? not bad for an 8 year old club getting someone on the SPFL board.
    ……………………………….
    Generally, money flows to the top, money buys power, more money, etc, etc…

    But money does not buy you a sporting Advantage. So we have been told.


  6. Will the SMSM now dial down the ridiculous coverage of Morelos’ ‘transfer speculation’?

    Not only was Morelos in the TRFC squad, but he played from the start – and for the whole game.

    Ergo, no club is about to buy the player.

    IMO, they’re no closer to shifting Morelos than when they received those, erm, Chinese offers…

    That Ibrox PR chap is making Traynor look competent! 🙂


  7. Wottpi

    I can imagine your despair that nothing will change what is a setup wide open to corruption.

    When CEO’s lie to their shareholders/stakeholders and get away with it, giving up hope is natural.

    Now although Res12 is Celtic based the consequences affects the integrity all of Scottish football and in spite of the death pronunciations it is a Resolution at Celtic AGM adjourned indefinitely.

    Adjourned means ” break off (a meeting, legal case, or game) with the intention of resuming it later.”
    Indefinitely: for a period of time with no fixed end.

    No fixed end which means no time limit set against when it can be resumed.

    Only Celtic shareholders can end Resolution 12 by a vote. Then and only then is it dead.

    The underlying principle of accountability is one society at large is beginning to appreciate more , without accountability those in charge can do what they like.

    Accountability : the fact of being responsible for what you do and able to give a satisfactory reason for it, or the degree to which this happens:

    The Celtic Board are accountable to shareholders.

    Hang in there.


  8. John Clark 1st August 2020 at 08:06 Edit
    I wonder if Steve Carson, who has been named as the successor of Donalda MacKinnon as the Director of BBC Scotland will allow free discussion on air of the ‘Big Lie’, or whether he will follow the established policy of the last 8 years and allow the BBC to carry propagating the untruth that TRFC is somehow the RFC of 1872?
    No, I don’t really wonder!

    He’d never have got the appointment unless Ken MacQuarrie believed him to be a safe pair hands.

    The BBC have a copy of Fergus McCann v David Murray. If nothing comes of it, then you have your answer.


  9. Reasonable Chap 31 July 21.04

    “So now we have the general targeting of a journalist (Tom English).”

    English is only one of the many journalists who have played the three monkey trick about the skulduggery in Scottish football that began under David Murray who still hangs on to his knighthood (that I’ve removed 🙂 )

    Have a read at a previous blog that names them all

    https://sfm.scot/sweet-little-lies/ and if English is now focussed on then its because his “campaign” against the SPL just highlighted the depth of his hypocrisy.

    He is the guy who read the Offshore Game Report on SFA and said it had flaws but never identified them. If he really wanted SFA/SPFL change, as opposed to ousting the green placemen at Hampden, then his stock would have risen that much higher than the depths his hypocrisy, he would have needed a spacesuit to breath.

    Since those listed at previous blog were contacted, there are more of the green hue who also got the full narrative but have written nothing and I’m betting on a “D” type notice from Celtic Park at play.

    For the games’s governors its all about power, and after 12 years of Murray’s cheating under the Nelson eye of the SFA, who can blame Celtic for wanting to keep hold of the reins?

    I’d much rather they used that power to modernise the game, but once bitten etc.

    For journalists it about feeding off the crumbs that fall from the table and where the biggest crumbs fall is where they gather. In the most current case involving English it wasn’t crumbs he was thrown it was a whole “ootsider”.

    When it comes to governing with integrity, in this case one is as bad as the other.


  10. Just a thought provoked by the discussions.

    Did Celtic primarily, but others too, fear there would be an attempt to negate all their efforts up to lockdown and so influenced the decision to make payment of SPFL prize money conditional on drawing the curtain.

    My view back then was to complete the fixtures TO A SETTLEMENT POINT in the couple of weeks before this season started and pay out in March/April a sufficient percentage to meet the bills but hold some in reserve in case adjustment required.

    However was there a fear that a pause would only add time for the null and voiders to gather momentum in the media, hence the approach taken?

    In short did the null and voiders contribute to the mess?


  11. easyJambo 28th July 2020 at 22:00 Edit
    upthehoops 28th July 2020 at 21:12
    Bogs Dollox 28th July 2020 at 14:14

    I will finish with a question which never seems to get answered. What should replace the incompetent SPFL Board/leadership? Many call for them and the SFA to be disbanded but what next?

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

    It’s a very valid point. Who decides what format the replacement organisation(s) would take, and how do we know the decision would be made free of influence and bias? It would be very difficult in Scotland.

    I’ve given my thoughts about this a couple of time recently, but I’ll summarise them as follows.

    You create an Executive Board of maybe 3 or 4 professionals not connected to any club. A CEO figurehead, leader, thinker, strategist, a Commercial director to do all the contract negotiations with broadcasters, sponsors etc. A Marketing director whose job is to promote the “brand”, seek out new investment and growth opportunities, delivery channels etc. You may also want a football administrator type to look after the Leagues themselves, the rules, fixtures, discipline etc., although it is not necessary for the football person to be on the Exec Board.

    Those individuals should be contracted for fixed terms or for the duration of specific projects, e.g you may want to co-opt someone to deliver a new league structure. Contracts should only be renewed based on performance and delivery of the expected change.

    The Execs would have been given the power to make changes without further referral to the clubs, although they may wish to consult with a Clubs Board when bouncing ideas around, but the Exec has to be autonomous and allowed to implement any changes they see fit, e.g. reconstruction.

    The Clubs Board responsibility would simple be a sounding board and as a conduit for communication between the Exec and the clubs. They may also participate along with the Execs on nomination and remuneration committees.

    In order to set it up, it would need all the clubs to sign up to the new structure and see their individual rights diluted, but to set the objectives for the first Exec appointees, e.g. raise income by x% a year, review the league set up and implement a new structure in two seasons time. There would be no final votes by clubs on the key changes on contracts, league structure etc.

    Such changes could well be radical and mean significant change for some clubs, e.g. part time clubs in regional leagues, full integration with the pyramid.

    Probably all just wishful thinking I’m afraid, but that’s the way I see it working. Something needs to change, or the game will ultimately die a death with few full time clubs left.

    This business like approach is exactly what is needed. To it I would add what I’ve already said about introducing a service provider (The SFA) to the customer (The SPFL, but other leagues too ) approach with suggestions for #:

    A Refereeing Service
    A Licensing Service
    An Ownership Service.

    Now this is from a June 2011 blog and might need updating but without such change the game will die if Covid19 doesn’t get there first.

    http://celticunderground.net/sfa-reform-one-down-three-to-go/

    The Referee Service

    This would be split with the SFA doing the recruitment, training and match appointments (having taken the nature of the game to be officiated into account). However the monitoring and evaluation would be the province of the customer, using referees or ex refs from anywhere to mark to a standard set by the customer. This spilt of responsibilities would prevent any one person being in a position to exert his own influence on referees as a result of being part of the appointment and evaluation process. It would safeguard the SFA from the kind of suspicion that led to the referees’ strike and lead to a higher standard of referee because the customer would be setting the standard not the supplier (as happens everywhere in business but football) If it did not, it would free the SPL/SL to hire their own referees from wherever they could get them. A bit of competition never did anybody any harm and that includes our referees who, if they reached higher standards, would be in more demand outside Scotland.

    The Licensing Service

    This needs to be more transparent. As it stands it is likely to approve Rangers licensing application that enables them to play in next season’s UEFA competitions. This, despite question marks over Ranger’s ownership; the intent of that ownership; (an intent that has still to be conveyed to the other small shareholders in Rangers), not to mention (Scottish media style) a potential crippling tax bill.

    Not only is it likely to approve a license this year in spite of the above, its role in not preventing Rangers getting into the situation they now find themselves in has surely to be investigated and changes made to prevent Rangers, or any Scottish club, endangering themselves and their fellow clubs in the future. In short the Licensing Service that is supposed to protect the financial well being of Scottish clubs has failed and that failure has undermined the integrity of our game.

    The process the SFA use is governed by UEFA and the new UEFA Financial Fair Play (FFP) rules that stipulate amongst other things what is to be treated as allowable income and allowable debt come into force for the new season. The problem with the FFP rules is that they are designed to stop rich owners putting money into clubs and thus help restrict player wages, the high cost of which is why so many clubs are carrying so much debt.

    Whilst an indirect wage cap will indirectly help Celtic (and Rangers) by making us more wage competitive with our neighbour’s in the Championship and lower EPL, neither ourselves nor Rangers are particularly high wage payers nor do we get income Abramovic style from our major shareholder.

    However what Celtic have had to compete with in the last decade is our main rivals Rangers first indulging in a questionable method of paying player wages (EBT’s) and then borrowing beyond their means to repay. This has all but destroyed the integrity of our game, something that can be inferred from the Scotsman article where it says,

    ‘which last season led the SFA’s legal and moral authority to be undermined by constant challenges.’

    It is therefore clear to any observer that the processes that have allowed Rangers to damage themselves and with it the game that the SFA is supposed to protect must be tailored to reflect the reality of the SPL not the EPL.

    In Scotland, unlike England where 4 clubs can qualify, the risk of failing to get CL money means the loser can be condemned to being the perpetual bridesmaid or not getting a wedding invite at all, forcing them into taking risks/gambles that can seriously damage the well being of each club, if not end it. So the licensing processes in Scotland have to be tighter to take more of an account of a clubs debt and to confirm that all players at all clubs are contracted on a basis that complies with standard tax law principles. ( a tick against “ Are your players wages subject to PAYE should suffice)

    A way of balancing debt with income and expenditure would be a triangulation profile for all clubs. A triangulation profile would have income (A) in one corner, players wages (B) in another and debt (C) in the third. The triangle has to be equilateral and kept in balance and the figures from the accounts supplied to the SFA by clubs have to feed each of the balance points.

    It gets more complicated in that what is counted as income has to be defined because some has to be allocated to non football costs,but as these need to be met they have to be included in the formula to set (A). What can be allowed as income will be defined by the UEFA FFP rules but is generally gate money, TV income, merchandising and UEFA money.

    Players wages including PAYE and NI should be easy to arrive at and the debt level would have to bear some relationship to the income and wages.

    So say for arguments sake (and the multiplier would have to be argued) the debt allowed was 3 times the difference between income and wages (like they used to do in my young days when mortgages bore some relationship to income) then everyone would know if a club was overborrowing if (C) > (A)-(B)*3

    A simple spreadsheet drawing on the figures from the accounts with a pie chart to present the picture could be published for each club without divulging the figures beneath and any club not meeting the result of the formula would have their licence to play in UEFA competitions refused as well as it triggering an SFA audit of their accounts.

    There is for Scottish Clubs (usually Celtic and Rangers) however an additional issue of what is allowable income for triangulation purposes because of the “skew” affect of Champions League money and the fact that it cannot be depended upon.

    Because of the consequences of the proposed profiliing, a club borrowing would have to take a risk that they were always going to have that money as guaranteed income as its loss would risk a refusal of a UEFA license or an audit under the proposed profiling rules.

    So what any sensible club would do is not to include money that could not be depended upon in the income, and if they get a windfall (like CL money) that is used it to avoid or to reduce debt levels, not to keep using debt to try and ensure they get the money that enables them to stay in debt, as Rangers have done.

    In fact any sensible measure of governance in Scotland with only two realistic competitors for CL money should insist on the CL money being excluded from the debt affordability calculation by removing it from the allowable income. (since Euro Cup money is more dependable and a lot less this could be included as allowable but not CL money)

    The principle of limiting debt to what you can afford is one which our banks abandoned to everyone’s cost and is a principle that needs to be restored everywhere never mind being introduced to football. The triangulation profile is a simple representation of that principle and a more detailed one looking at what is and is not admissable as income and what the debt multiplyer might be in the context of Scottish football is required. Any club who wishes to operate as if CL money is guaranteed and is allowable for financial profiling purposes could only do so if they have good reasons to believe that this is the case. Those reasons should be supplied and made public.

    Whatever approach is adopted Scottish football needs a more relevant process and the SFA should be saying something about the lack of transparency in the Licensing process and what they intend to do to address it.

    Ownership. If the Rangers takeover has highlighted anything it is the need for scrutiny of any new owner or majority shareholder to be a fit and proper person to hold such a position. Their wealth and its sources have to be checked and ownership has to be part of the licensing process. The English F.A have such a test and the background can be found here:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/competitions/premier-league/6271777/What-exactly-is-the-Premier-Leagues-fit-and-proper-person-test.html

    It is not clear if the SFA have an equivalent process in place but if not they should have and they should have at least been a party in the Rangers takeover process and gave Craig Whites “ownership” its approval.


  12. Along with other Hibs supporters I think the threat of Covid has suddenly become greater. So let’s call the league now and announce Hibs the champions. Unfortunately Celtic will have to be relegated but that’s the fairest way.

    Black humour I know but please give me credit for the skill used in smiling with my tongue in my cheek and winking at the same time. It hurts.


  13. Auldheid 1st August 2020 at 17:09
    It is not clear if the SFA have an equivalent process in place but if not they should have and they should have at least been a party in the Rangers takeover process and gave Craig Whites “ownership” its approval.
    …………………………….
    I believe the SFA fined the ibrox club because Craig Whyte was not fit and proper something that took them months to come to that conclusion.They were also fined £50,000 by the plus stock exchange for failing to disclose whytes previous disqualification as a director when the takeover of the club was completed in May 2011.
    The SFA compliance officer issued charges against the ibrox cluband it’s owner following an independent inquiry led by our friend lord Nimmo smith. Whyte was issued with two notices of complaint over breaches of two disciplinary rules whilr the ibrox club had been accused of 5 breaches including failing to abide by SFA regulations over the fit and proper persons test.
    The case was to be heard by a SFA judicial panel on March 29, 2012.
    I CAN’T FIND THE OUTCOME OF THE SFA JUDICIAL PANEL as nothing was reported about it on March 30, 2012.
    Happy for any help on this;-)
    Any way by this time line it took the SFA almost a year to find out that craig whyte was not a fit and proper person to run the ibrox club, but they waved charles Green through the door. Was no lessons learned by the SFA?


  14. Cluster One 1st August 2020 at 18:51
    I CAN’T FIND THE OUTCOME OF THE SFA JUDICIAL PANEL as nothing was reported about it on March 30, 2012.
    Happy for any help on this;-)

    CO Paul McConville reported on it.

    The Judicial Panel Disciplinary Tribunal Hearing took place over six days: 29 March, 6 April (Procedural Hearings) and a Principal Hearing on 17, 18, 20 and 23 April 2012 at Hampden Park, Glasgow. The Tribunal heard the conjoined hearings of the complaints against The Rangers Football Club plc (“Rangers FC”) and Mr Craig Whyte.

    First Complaint
    1 Breach of Disciplinary Rule 1: Not Proven
    2 Breach of Disciplinary Rule 2: Proven A fine of £10,000 payable to the Scottish FA within twelve months.
    3 Breach of Disciplinary Rule 14: Proven A fine of £50,000 payable to the Scottish FA within twelve months.
    4 Breach of Disciplinary Rule 66: Proven (subject to deletion of the sixth element) A fine of £100,000payable to the Scottish FA within twelve months.

    In addition, the Tribunal imposed a prohibition in terms of Articles 94.1 and 95 of the Articles of Association, prohibiting Rangers FC for a period of 12 months from the date of Determination from seeking registration with the Scottish FA of any player not currently with the club, excluding any player under the age of 18 years.

    5 Breach of Disciplinary Rule 71: Proven The Tribunal imposed a censure.

    Second Complaint
    1 Breach of Disciplinary Rule 325: Proven The Tribunal imposed a censure.

    Full Text
    https://scotslawthoughts.wordpress.com/2012/05/12/the-sfa-judicial-panel-verdict-on-rangers-full-text/


  15. “Cluster One 1st August 2020 at 18:51
    I CAN’T FIND THE OUTCOME OF THE SFA JUDICIAL PANEL as nothing was reported about it on March 30, 2012.
    Happy for any help on this;-)'”

    fitbawfan 1st August 2020 at 19:38
    ‘.CO Paul McConville reported on it.’
    “””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””
    fitbawfan, not being any kind of techy, I’ve repeatedly failed to find that source material.
    If I ever did copy it I long ago lost it somewhere in the ether.
    I’m so glad you have provided the link.

    I shall read it through as bedtime reading, as reflecting part [but only part] of the dirtiest episode in Scottish football history, brought about by the Sports cheating of a man once deemed worthy of being touched on the shoulder by a sword wielded by Her Sovereign Majesty, Elizabeth II, instead of having it shoved up his fundament, as it subsequently ought to have been in 2012!


  16. fitbawfan 1st August 2020 at 19:38
    ……..Thanks for that. I was looking at March and not a later date. That was a lot of fines on top of the, They were also fined £50,000 by the plus stock exchange for failing to disclose whytes previous disqualification as a director. Don’t know if they were ever paid. Then you can add the LNS fine that was not paid but the offset rul was used.
    ………………..
    JC . I look foward to what you find and maybe remind us of.


  17. Auldheid 1st August 2020 at 17:10
    ‘..That’s all Folks. ? ?’
    “”””””””””””””””””””””
    And may Fred Quimby, Auldheid, who was born on 31st July 1886 ( when one of my granpappies was 34/35 years old and the other grandpappy was 12 or thereabouts: the former married very late!)) be enjoying his just reward for the great happiness and pleasure that his genius as a producer gave to us all with his ‘Tom and Jerry ‘ and the whole wonderful world of cartoons.
    His birth date was mentioned in yesterday’s ‘Scotsman’.
    He died in 1965, when I was in my early 20s.
    What joy it was to see in the mid to late ’70s my own kids enjoy the same ‘Tom and Jerry’ cartoons that I had enjoyed.


  18. Cluster One 1st August 2020 at 23:07
    ‘…They were also fined £50,000 by the plus stock exchange for failing to disclose whytes previous disqualification as a director. Don’t know if they were ever paid.’
    “””””””””””””””””””””””””
    Now there’s a point that needs looking at!
    Were any fines imposed actually paid? Do ‘fines ‘ count as debts owed by a club in administration/liquidation?
    Someone out there will come up with the answer!
    Like the little difficulty I have had with the FCA : how do we get to the truth when we are dealing with bodies like any of the market stock exchanges when they are not in any ordinarily democratic way accountable to Parliament or to us?
    The ‘regulatory’ bodies are composed of people of the same breed and stamp as those whom they are supposed to ‘regulate’.
    The TOP made sure that King was not convicted of contempt of court.
    The FCA appear not even to have to respond to complaints that they themselves may have acted in breach of their statutory duties!

    Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?, as ma granny used to ask.
    Oh, what a cynical auld wumman she was, fluent in Latin as she was!


  19. John Clark 1st August 2020 at 23:48

    Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?, as ma granny used to ask.
    Oh, what a cynical auld wumman she was, fluent in Latin as she was!
    ;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;

    Your Granny would then have had a suitable phrase for the regulators too.
    Tanta stultitia mortalium est.
    🙂


  20. fitbawfan 1st August 2020 at 23:57
    ‘.Your Granny would then have had a suitable phrase for the regulators too.
    Tanta stultitia mortalium est.’
    “””””””””””””””””””””””””””
    Her very words! ( but she sourced Hesiod as Seneca’s source..)
    She declaimed that sentiment from the windae of her flat at the bend in London Road ( where years later, in the 1960s, they couldn’t use the ‘Liverpool’ trams because they could not negotiate the bend, just where the ‘Barras’ is).
    That granny , God rest her, died n 1952.


  21. And, afore I go to my kip, can I say that I was not terribly impressed by the football offered by Arsenal and Chelsea today?

    Very basic, pedestrian stuff really, not in any way much above the skill levels of the SPL.

    No. It was worse than pedestrian: it was nondescript sh.te!


  22. John Clark 2nd August 2020 at 00:12 Edit
    fitbawfan 1st August 2020 at 23:57
    ‘.Your Granny would then have had a suitable phrase for the regulators too.
    Tanta stultitia mortalium est.’
    “””””””””””””””””””””””””””
    Her very words! ( but she sourced Hesiod as Seneca’s source..)
    She declaimed that sentiment from the windae of her flat at the bend in London Road ( where years later, in the 1960s, they couldn’t use the ‘Liverpool’ trams because they could not negotiate the bend, just where the ‘Barras’ is).

    That granny , God rest her, died n 1952.

    Was that where Ross St joined the London Rd? My gran lived there.


  23. On the CW Verdict one noticeable omission from the charges that included failure to pay HMRC VAT and PAYE tax owed, was his failure to pay the wee tax bill which by the spring of 2012 was a well known liability to HMRC.

    It was also a an overdue payable to HMRC at 31st March 2012, which the SFA were aware of in Feb 2012 when Rangers applied for a UEFA licence just before they went into administration. That application was refused as there were no accounts and HMRC were known to be pursuing payment since Aug 2011 when Sherriff Officers called to collect.

    Its as if the SFA didn’t want that particular item investigated away back in 2012 and yet LNS helped them draw up the Terms of Reference for the March Judicial Panel in Feb 2012.

    The same LNS who later treated the DOS ebts as continuous with the big tax case ebts even they the DOS ones were not lawful.

    The fix was in early doors. It was all about damage control later manifested in the 5 Way Agreement.


  24. It was a hugely important day yesterday: the opening of the new SPFL season.

    It was a big day for the clubs, the SPFL, the SFA, Sky & the fans. What did we get?

    Sky gave us AFC v. TRFC in the marquee game, live & with no competition from other televised matches.

    A turgid affair; AFC looked like 11 strangers had turned up a party wearing the same outfit. They gave the ball away with abandon & in doing so made TRFC look adequate. Four (four!) shots on target in 90 minutes, all from TRFC. The officials had (to be kind) a very ‘ring-rusty’ performance.

    I’ll declare that I didn’t listen to the commentary. (I enjoyed playing Terry Reid’s ‘The Driver’ & Tom Petty’s ‘Wildflowers’ albums vice Crocker & McCoist.)

    I wonder what non-Scottish viewers made of it? I saw a far better (technically & with greater passion) non-league game, in terrible conditions, on BT last weekend.

    We carp about the monetary value of the SPFL’s broadcast deal, but the poor product on offer is just cheap filler for Sky.

    …and remember folks, the SPFL has no sponsor this season.


  25. FYI; The comedy sketch linked above is called…”The new fragrance for bhoys”

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

    Back to other business

    Homunculus 31st July 2020 at 13:25
    “An independent arbitration panel has looked at all of the material, presumably taken evidence from witnesses, carried out whatever investigations which were required and unanimously agreed that the SPFL did nothing wrong. Well insofar as the accusations made against them.

    People called for an independent investigation. It has now been done, you have your result.

    People are now saying that is not satisfactory because they themselves have not seen all of the papers, looked at all of the evidence. However in Scotland arbitration is a confidential process, not in some nebulous way, confidential because the relevant act makes it so.

    So we now have, “but it’s in the public interest”. I’m afraid “in the public interest” and “of interest to the public” are not the same thing.

    There is a good argument to say that what is “in the public interest” is for these things not to be released, as to do so would reduce people’s faith in the confidentiality of the arbitration process. A process which is there for a reason.Some football reporter / supporter demanding to see confidential documentation is not as important to the public as maintaining the integrity of the process.”

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

    Here we have Homunculus, a prominent poster on here, a site that has as it’s M.O., a wish to hold the footballing authorities accountable to the fans, starting a post by saying “….the SPFL did nothing wrong. Well insofar as the accusations made against them.”
    Yet ending with “There is a good argument to say that what is “in the public interest” is for these things not to be released, as to do so would reduce people’s faith in the confidentiality of the arbitration process”.

    That is some leap for an SFM poster…..ie. putting forward a flawed argument in favour of secrecy. I say flawed because the Arbitration Act itself provides a route to publication.

    I accept that the Arbitration Act indicates confidentiality BUT IT ALSO PROVIDES A ROUTE TO PUBLICATION. If all parties agree to it, IT CAN BE PUBLISHED.

    Arbitration(Scotland) Act 2010 Schedule 1
    “Rule 26 Confidentiality D
    26(1)Disclosure by the tribunal, any arbitrator or a party of confidential information relating to the arbitration is to be actionable as a breach of an obligation of confidence unless the disclosure—
    (a)is authorised, expressly or impliedly, by the parties (or can reasonably be considered as having been so authorised),
    (e)is in the public interest,

    Andrew Smith put up a blog post that touched on this back in early July entitled….
    “The Last Thing Scottish Football Needs Right Now is more Secrecy”

    Neil Doncaster had this to say two years ago on EBTs/Rangers
    “….I think that’s why transparency and openness are the themes of this morning. I think the only way you can possibly try and draw a line under the events of the past is to understand precisely what happened…”
    https://www.glasgowtimes.co.uk/sport/15436214.neil-doncaster-hopes-scottish-football-can-move-on-after-spfl-have-final-say-on-rangers-ebt-issue/

    I have just listened to a podcast of yesterdays Sportsound (link below) which started with Neil Doncaster getting an easy interview from Richard Gordon. What was interesting was ND stating that the SPFL would be okay with publication of the arbitration process. So no apparent contradiction with what he said 3 years ago….Only, the question….WHO DOESN’T WANT IT PUBLISHED ?

    Note to Richard Gordon, WHY NOT ASK HIM ?
    Note to BBC Scotland,.. Why not let Tom English do the interview ? Did Neil present conditions to his appearence, as per earlier in the summer ?

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/p08mhgsh

    I return the Doncaster quote from 2017
    “I think the only way you can possibly try and draw a line under the events of the past is to understand precisely what happened”

    Lord Clark at the Court of Session saw the public interest and taled about it in court

    The Scottish Arbitration Act 2010 provides a legal route to publication.

    Doncaster has said the SPFL don’t have a problem with publication

    The HMFC/PT joint statement mentioned “As all Parties have been requested not to comment on the tribunal’s decision or reveal details of the hearings on the grounds of confidentiality, all we can only say is how disappointed and surprised we are at the outcome.”

    WHO REQUESTED CONFIDENTIALITY ?


  26. It seems that Neil Doncaster is quite happy to make the arbitration decision public, or so he has told the BBC.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/53621389

    Welcoming the outcome, Doncaster said the SPFL would be happy for the legal proceedings to be made public.

    “We would have no issue with that whatsoever,” he told BBC Scotland.

    “The advice that we’ve received is that they are confidential and the only way that could come into the public domain would be for all the parties to agree to make it available.”


  27. easyJambo 2nd August 2020 at 11:50

    Presumably one of the other parties wouldn’t agree to it then.

    Or no-one asked for the confidentiality to be lifted.


  28. reasonablechap 2nd August 2020 at 10:26

    Here is a link to a bit of BBC comedy that hits a spot and elps illustrate one of my points from a post, yesterday. The BBC themselves put it out on twitter, so there should be no problem posting the link here.

    https://twitter.com/i/web/status/1289508924752900097
    ………………………………………..
    There is nothing to beat an Obsession when it is driven by a simple desire to find the truth.


  29. Cluster One 2nd August 2020 at 16:21

    They can’t use “paranoid” any more because it turns it it was all true.


  30. Homunculus 2nd August 2020 at 17:20
    …………………..
    Not Obsessed enough, some would say. Wonder what team the person made the video supports? Obsessed enough to make a video.


  31. Auldheid 2nd August 2020 at 01:09
    ‘…Was that where Ross St joined the London Rd?’
    “”””””””””””””””””””””””””””
    My grandparents moved from Motherwell in the 1920s into a tenement flat in the block (demolished a number of years ago)which was on the corner of London Rd /Greendyke St, almost directly across London Road from Ross Street.
    The grandad died in 1951, and the granny a year later.


  32. Auldheid 2nd August 2020 at 01:03

    Cluster One 1st Aug 18.51

    This may be the investigation into CW that you refer to:

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B6uWzxhblAt9UkNvbkxocFUtbFU/view?usp=sharing
    ………………………………..
    Thanks for that.
    Mr Craig Whyte was found guilty of bringing the game into disrepute, and the
    Tribunal was in no doubt that he, together with a number of business associates,
    had engaged in scandalous business activities, which, if not illegal, of which in
    certain matters there may be a doubt, had a corrosive effect on the reputation of a
    proud football club. The Tribunal was left in no doubt that Mr Craig Whyte did not
    engage in his activities in Rangers FC with any view to the interests of Rangers FC or
    Scottish football in the wider context.
    …………………
    You could change the name of Graig whyte to David Murray and wonder why the later has never been charged with bringing the game into disrepute.
    Or has he and i missed it?


  33. Cluster One 2nd August 2020 at 23:07
    “..You could change the name of Graig whyte to David Murray and wonder why the later has never been charged with bringing the game into disrepute.”
    “”””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””
    Certainly, the sentence
    “The Tribunal was left in no doubt that Mr Craig Whyte did not
    engage in his activities in Rangers FC with any view to the interests of Rangers FC or
    Scottish football in the wider context”
    could equally have been applied to the dirty night of Scottish football.

    One can only speculate why the Tribunal fingered the wee Del Boy, when the rest of us know that compared to some, his part in the death of RFC of 1872 (which caused the death of Integrity in Scottish Football governance )was , at most, marginal, and inevitable as being merely the consequence of a decade long cheating by SDM.

    It was that decade’s worth of sports cheating and tax cheating by a knight of the realm that killed RFC of 1872.
    And it is to the everlasting shame and disgrace of the SMSM that they failed to report the truth as they stuffed themselves to obesity level with succulent lamb and vintage wines like Odysseus’ companions who were turned into swine by Circe as they gorged themselves on the island of Aeaea
    Honest to God!
    What lousy, cheating rats they were then and are now, as they propagandise the lie that RFC of 1872 did not die the football death of Liquidation!


  34. From the DR this morning
    https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/craig-whyte-up-old-tricks-22458834

    ““Tom” – who we believe to be Craig Whyte – pledged to help us avoid the peril posed by enemies such as lawyers and insolvency practitioners, who might try to get struggling creditors some of their cash back.

    And, in the end, he would simply shift all assets to a new company, leaving the debt with the oldco, which would “quietly drift off”.”

    Aaahh! that’s what happened to RFC of 1872…it “quietly drifted off”!!

    And where was Mark McGivern and the DR in 2011/2012 when there was real investigative journalism to be done, and where are they now with their acceptance and propagation of the Big Lie?


  35. Cluster One 2nd August 2020 at 16:21
    There is nothing to beat an Obsession when it is driven by a simple desire to find the truth.

    https://twitter.com/i/web/status/1289508924752900097

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

    You should start by telling the truth regarding ‘the driver’.

    What the average fitbaw fan digs deep to seek ‘the truth’ for, depends on what club they support and/or hate. In this case, hate is the true driver of the ‘obsession’. Had it been any other club in Scotland, the obsession that some engage in would have faded long ago.

    I read various posts about Alfredo Morelos and how the media supposedly help or are used by Rangers to inflate his market value with others focusing on his lack of goals. I haven’t engaged on those types of issues until now.

    I’m sure all Scottish fitbaw fans will wish the player well this week as Rangers resume the Europa League campaign 2019/20. Alfredo was top scorer in the competition during the qualifying rounds and is joint top scorer since the groups started, 11 months ago.

    In other summer ‘news’ that wasn’t picked up by SFM, the Celtic defender Kristoffer Ajer, is apparently worth 50 Million.

    ANYONE INTERESTED IN WHO DOESN’T WANT THE ABITRAL JUDGEMENT PUBLISHED ?


  36. reasonablechap

    I love your comment “Had it been any other club in Scotland, the obsession that some engage in would have faded long ago.” The answer to that is we still talk about Gretna and Third Lanark, to name but two, and remember them as clubs that died. I am sure that they are missed by some/many but they paid the price for financial mismanagement! Without corruption and, what many would suggest as, criminality the discussion on here, without doubt, would be very different!


  37. adam812 3rd August 2020 at 12:53

    My answer is simpler, it wan’t any other club.

    The only club in liquidation because they cheated the tax man out of millions of pounds and left many more creditors losing further millions is Rangers. It was only Rangers who were the subject of a Supreme Court ruling in relation to disguised remuneration which led to the whole farce being exposed.


  38. I suspect that the party (or parties) who do not wish the proceedings of the Appellate Tribunal published may well be one, two or all of the three panel members.

    I cannot envisage any situation where it is to the benefit of the anonymous panel members’ to have their ruminations publicly examined, particularly since there is no right of appeal to any of the parties involved.

    (Before someone plays their ‘transparency’ Joker, remember that the rules of the Tribunal only allow for the release of the findings when all participants agree. Obviously, at least one party hasn’t given consent. That’s why it’s a doddle for Doncaster, vindicated by the result, to state that he has no issues with publishing the proceedings. Just like in Scooby-Doo, ‘If it wasn’t for those pesky kids’…)


  39. There is an argument to say that someone like Auldheid isn’t obsessed. That he and others directly involved are simply following through on a legal/company process and that the many, many others who involve themselves in the everyday scan, review and automatic critique on all things blue are the more obvious target of the BBC comedy sketch.

    Here’s the thing though !
    What’s the root motivation for Auldheid and the others involved ?
    What/who is blocking them ?

    If the motivation is for what they see as ‘sporting integrity’ to be upheld, then why would you continue to support who was blocking it.

    If they continue to support the PLC who block it, then it isn’t ‘sporting integrity’ that is the only big motive involved.

    Trying to seperate the football club from the PLC would see them engaged in a thought process that some might say is hypocritical.

    For me, the obsession sketch is more about those Sevco threadsters who just can’t get enough of the everyday Rangers fix, whether that be historical, up to date or midnight posts that send everyone off to dream about Green and Whyte.

    The biggest irony of all, is that it is what this ‘group’ do, that ridicules their own mantra of new club, no Old Firm, etrc.


  40. Jingo Jimsie

    I suspect that the party (or parties) who do not wish the proceedings of the Appellate Tribunal published may well be one, two or all of the three panel members.

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

    Could do with a lawyer here but

    Is a panel member referred to as an ‘arbitrator’, opposed to ‘party’.
    Wouldn’t another potential legal route to publication be e) ‘in the public interest’

    Arbitration(Scotland) Act 2010 Schedule 1
    “Rule 26 Confidentiality D
    26(1)Disclosure by the tribunal, any arbitrator or a party of confidential information relating to the arbitration is to be actionable as a breach of an obligation of confidence unless the disclosure—
    (a)is authorised, expressly or impliedly, by the parties (or can reasonably be considered as having been so authorised),
    (e)is in the public interest,


  41. Rangers FC died in 2012: that is indisputable.

    No Ibrox should have been allowed anywhere near Scottish football thereafter: that is debatable.

    But, to put our own shameful state of affairs in Scottish football into perspective, we have FIFA outdoing every FA on the planet in terms of corruption – and with an absolute disregard for public perception;

    “Gianni Infantino: Fifa president to continue in role amid criminal investigation

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/53634191

    Hampden is full of amateurs, in every sense. 🙁


  42. reasonablechap 3rd August 2020 at 15:05

    ‘Could do with a lawyer here but

    Is a panel member referred to as an ‘arbitrator’, opposed to ‘party’.’

    Well, in the case under discussion the SPFL, HoMFC, PTFC & SFC are referred to as ‘respondents’, not ‘parties’. The use of ‘party’ & ‘parties’ by me was loose language, but still conveyed my point. The panel members are afforded confidentiality/anonymity by the SFA’s JPP, Section 17.5.
    ::
    ::
    Again, from your post, “Wouldn’t another potential legal route to publication be e) ‘in the public interest’.”

    I believe that the ‘public interest’ in this case is decided by the SFA, as detailed in their JPP, Section 17.5.


  43. Jingso.Jimsie 3rd August 2020 at 15:35

    I think the confidentiality of the arbitration comes directly from the Arbitration (Scotland) Act 2010. There are exceptions of course, for example if the parties agree to it or “is necessary in the interests of justice” or “is in the public interest”.

    Forgive me for saying it again but, “is in the public interest” is not the same as is “of interest to the public”

    What public interest would be achieved by releasing this information, against the will of the parties involved, which would outweigh the inherent confidentiality of the arbitration process. The confidentiality is enshrined in law in Scotland so there would have to be a good reason to breach it.


  44. reasonablechap 3rd August 2020 at 12:10

    Cluster One 2nd August 2020 at 16:21
    There is nothing to beat an Obsession when it is driven by a simple desire to find the truth.

    https://twitter.com/i/web/status/1289508924752900097

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

    You should start by telling the truth regarding ‘the driver’.
    …………………………
    The Driver crashed the bus here.
    Stuart Hay
    @stuhay89
    Comedy Writer // Bonafide Rock and Roll Star // Horror and True Crime Enthusiast // Big Hun // El Mosher // Stoater Abouter // Tap Scranner // Dug Clapper.
    ………………………………….
    Had it been any other club in Scotland, the obsession that some engage in would have faded long ago.
    ……
    Not if it was any other club that had a rival.
    ………………………
    I’m sure all Scottish fitbaw fans will wish the player well this week as Rangers resume the Europa League campaign 2019/20. Alfredo was top scorer in the competition during the qualifying rounds
    …..
    Uefa don’t include goals scored in the qualifying rounds when they announce their top goal scorer in their competition.


  45. reasonablechap 3rd August 2020 at 14:54
    For me, the obsession sketch is more about those Sevco threadsters who just can’t get enough of the everyday Rangers fix, whether that be historical, up to date or midnight posts that send everyone off to dream about Green and Whyte.
    ………..
    Maybe if there was not such a comedy show from the ibrox club every day,those Sevco threadsters would not have so much material to mock the comedy show.


  46. easyJambo 3rd August 2020 at 16:17

    According to the DR, it is Hearts and Partick who are now blocking publication of the judgement.

    I don’t know if the judgement is perhaps a two page summary or a more extensive document giving reasons for the decision.

    https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/hearts-partick-thistle-hammer-spfl-22461694
    ………………….
    Now why would Hearts and Partick thistle not want publication of the judgement? Did something turn up under a stone that they don’t want made public?


  47. Cluster One 3rd August 2020 at 17:40

    Now why would Hearts and Partick thistle not want publication of the judgement? Did something turn up under a stone that they don’t want made public?

    We already know what the “judgement” was. The panel deemed that the SPFL’s actions were lawful.

    I’m more interested in how they got to that determination. What was the evidence that the panel accepted or rejected and why, e.g. re the Dundee vote. Were there precedents for a “reject” vote being reversed, or did the panel simply determine that the Companies Act provisions didn’t preclude such a reversal? Similarly, on what basis did they treat the omission, from the SPFL’s briefing notes to clubs, of the potential liabilities to broadcasters should the season be ended prematurely? Did they make a judgement that there was no guarantee that the result of the vote would be any different had that information been made available?


  48. easyJambo 3rd August 2020 at 18:09
    “We can confirm that the SPFL requested that the judgment, and judgement alone, from the recent arbitration be shared with other member clubs,” a spokesperson told Record Sport exclusively. “A request we opposed.

    “Hearts and Partick Thistle always wanted this matter to be heard in open court in the interest of total transparency.
    ………………………
    Note to myself. Don’t rush through anything until you have read it all in full.


  49. easyJambo 3rd August 2020 at 18:09

    It could be as simple as the resolution is supported or it isn’t. If it gets the required support then it is passed. If it fails to get that support within 28 days then it fails. As such there really isn’t such a thing as an irrevocable no vote. People can change their minds if they don’t support it in the initial stages.

    The SPFL asked people to have their vote to them by 5 OClock on the Friday. However it wasn’t a “deadline”, no matter how many times people describe it as such.

    I think people thinking of this as a yes or no vote, on the Friday are missing the point. The simple question is did the resolution receive sufficient support within 28 days, it did. A subsequent discussion with the premiership clubs unanimously agreed that the games could not be played, which would have supported the position.


  50. Jingso.Jimsie 3rd August 2020 at 14:45
    ‘.. suspect that the party (or parties) who do not wish the proceedings of the Appellate Tribunal published may well be one, two or all of the three panel members’
    “”””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””
    At 12.49 today, Jingo.Jimsie, I emailed the following to the Scottish Arbitration Centre:
    “In Scotland can an individual member of an Arbitration Tribunal refuse to give consent to making the proceedings public even if the parties have given consent?”
    I have not yet had a reply.
    [I can’t imagine that the members of such a Tribunal WOULD object as long as their names etc were not disclosed .
    However the fact that each member is BOUND by the ‘confidentiality’ might as a corollary suggest that they could well have the RIGHT ,personally. to withhold their consent, and thus block publication?]

    ps. It’s a damned nuisance not having the ‘italics’ and ‘underlining’ and ‘bold’ facilities! Where did they go? Or is it just my non-techiness? Anybody?


  51. Am I surprised? “Confusion” they say.
    I’m sure that won’t apply to Hearts and Partick when they have to respond to an SFA notice of complaint later this week.

    https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/rangers-motherwell-hibs-escape-sfa-22463659

    Rangers, Hibs and Motherwell escape SFA testing punishment as Hampden chiefs accept Ibrox ‘misunderstanding’
    The clubs had their testing habits investigated after incidents relating to pre-season friendlies.
    Rangers, Motherwell and Hibs are set to escape SFA punishment for breaching coronavirus testing protocol.
    All three clubs are in the clear after issues with their test results in the run-up to the start of the season.
    Last month Rangers were asked by the SFA to explain why nine of their top-team squad featured in a B team clash against Dundee United without medical clearance.
    The rule breach only became clear later that same day when Steven Gerrard’s first XI had to delay a friendly against Motherwell by two hours while they waited on test results to come back.
    Rangers have replied to the compliance officer describing the incident as a ‘misunderstanding of protocol’ and have upped testing to twice a week.
    The SFA have accepted the explanation. A source said: “Yes, Rangers should have been well aware of the rules but in the circumstances it does seem as if there was some confusion.”
    Hibs will also avoid punishment for testing players and coaching staff less than 24 hours before a friendly with Ross County that had to be cancelled.
    And Motherwell have been cleared for a 24-hour lab delay which meant their players were still waiting for results before making that trip to Ibrox – despite having given swabs more than 50 hours earlier.


  52. Just a thought:

    Is it possible that the Arbitration Panel, in its judgement, has been highly critical of the legal case Hearts and Partick Thistle put forward?

    My own view is that those clubs’ had offered no sound legal arguments. Their public proclamations were not really based on the rules, regulations and the legality of the SPFL’s actions. Their complaints seemed to centre around a moral outrage that they were being unfairly ‘punished’. Principally, they seemed to be contending that despite finishing in last place in their respective divisions – following the determination of the final league positions on an average points per game basis – it should not result in their relegations.

    Since the 42 clubs had rejected various attempts at reconstruction, HMFC & PTFC seemed to be asking the arbitration panel – on no obviously sound legal basis – to order that the clubs in the automatic relegation place are not relegated and (even more alarmingly) the clubs who won their respective divisions were not promoted.

    You would expect that the panel will have forensically dissected the facts of the ‘case’. If the legal position is as clear cut as I believe it to be, the judgement will have laid bare the sheer folly of raising the proceedings in the first place.

    If there are particularly adverse comments in the arbitration judgement, it may not be helpful when the clubs answer the SFA charges later in the week.

    If HMFC and PTFC really do not wish the judgement to be published, is it because they are concerned about how it may affect the outcome of the SFA charges?


  53. (Batten down the hatches Big Pink).

    You know what? By definition, we’re here to question many things of Scottish football, most of all journalism.

    I’ve made no secret of my frustration with Phil.

    Phil is no stranger to flashing his NUJ card nor does he shy away from questioning many others that subscribe to the same organisation.

    The NUJ code of conduct ‘strives to ensure that information disseminated is honestly conveyed, accurate and fair’.

    In my opinion, Phil should remind himself of this.

    Like all of us, Phil has an opinion. But unlike Phil, few of us are members of the NUJ. And unlike Phil, most of us have a balanced opinion.

    I’ve just read his most recent posts on his own website. And I haven’t cringed so much since I last read One of my own last posts.

    Really Phil: “Apropos any replacement for Alfie the player would need to be within £1.5M – £2M range, and that’s a stretch”?

    This aside, his ‘rugger man’ is as dependable as a horse tip at Hamilton races.

    Sticking with Phil’s rugger analogy, his blog is more tired than a French hooker.

    Phil – I’m in WS2, where are you?


  54. reasonablechap 3rd August 2020 at 14:54

    There is an argument to say that someone like Auldheid isn’t obsessed. That he and others directly involved are simply following through on a legal/company process and that the many, many others who involve themselves in the everyday scan, review and automatic critique on all things blue are the more obvious target of the BBC comedy sketch.

    A. Correct

    Here’s the thing though !

    What’s the root motivation for Auldheid and the others involved ?

    A, Accountability via the legal/company process. ( accountability = a situation in which someone is responsible for things that happen and can give a satisfactory reason for them)

    That reason has been avoided by SFA in whose tender care Celtic left it)

    What/who is blocking them ?

    A. Every club that are SFA and SPFL members who do not want to be accountable to their supporters/shareholders, plus the media who have failed in their accountability role as they sup from the same trough as the clubs/SFA/SPFL.

    If the motivation is for what they see as ‘sporting integrity’ to be upheld, then why would you continue to support who was blocking it.

    A. Indeed.

    If they continue to support the PLC who block it, then it isn’t ‘sporting integrity’ that is the only big motive involved.

    A. Accountability remains the constant.

    Trying to separate the football club from the PLC would see them engaged in a thought process that some might say is hypocritical.

    A. There is no separation in reality, just as there is no separation between a club and its support. One cannot live without the other. The separation you refer is a legal construct devised by Doncaster based on a rule change to deal with Romanov that introduced the concept of owner separate from the club that did not exist until Romanov behaviour required the addition. There was another reason to do with the way Brechin? were constituted and the subject was discussed a few years ago on SFM.

    For me, the obsession sketch is more about those Sevco threadsters who just can’t get enough of the everyday Rangers fix, whether that be historical, up to date or midnight posts that send everyone off to dream about Green and Whyte.

    A. Correct

    The biggest irony of all, is that it is what this ‘group’ do, that ridicules their own mantra of new club, no Old Firm, etrc.

    A. They might argue the new club mantra is an invention that treats them as stupid and it is that which angers them.


  55. It seems like dodgy Dave (Murray that is) having never been brought to account for his misdeeds at Rangers is still at it, and why wouldn’t he has never been held accountable.

    Today more than ever we need accountable governance at all levels civil and football. From CQN:

    I had to smile this morning when I saw we were back reading about Oldco Rangers’ old chairmen. Craig Whyte has been exposed by the Daily Record for allegedly trading under his father’s name in a business designed to do pretty much what he did to Oldco Rangers back in 2012.

    I wonder if we will ever see Sir David Murray’s reruns given the same treatment? No investigative journalism is needed, just read Sir David’s company, Murray Capital Group’s most recent financial statement on a challenge by HMRC “regarding the tax treatment of payments made under the Group’s Share Based Payment Scheme”.

    No provision was made in earlier accounts, as “management considered it unlikely that additional tax would be payable to HMRC.” However, “following further legal consultation….. and communication from HMRC… it was now more likely than not that a future cash outflow would be required.”

    Never mind, we should let David discretely get on with being David. Share Based Payment Scheme! Honestly! The company also extended it’s year end from 31 December 2019 to 30 June 2020; always a good sign.


  56. easyJambo 3rd August 2020 at 23:40

    Yes but one is life or death, the other is clearly much more important than that.


  57. I think today is a good day to put things in perspective.

    Thousands of teenagers will receive pieces of paper that will determine how their lives proceed from here. THEIR seasons were called before the football season was. They are now being judged on THEIR performances with one quarter of THEIR season still to be completed. There are no points on a league table that indicates how they performed, they will be judged partially on assessment by teachers who carry all the same prejudices that the rest of us have. There are no calls for the last school year to be declared null and void and no calls for the school year to be completed at a later date
    Will teenagers resort to court action to have the C pass that they have been awarded bumped up to a B because they could have improved greatly during the period after the schools were closed?

    There is no fairness about any pandemic and that is something we have to accept no matter how much it disappoints us. Football clubs will have the opportunity to reverse the unfairness over a year or two on the pitch. How many teenagers will have that same opportunity in a world that is going into the severe economic and employment decline that fighting the pandemic is bringing on?


  58. Looks like the SFA has had to wake up Bryson to deliver some creative spin.

    “Imperfectly registered” has been topped by “Misinterpreted protocol”.

    [I’m just surprised that Hampden even mentioned the ‘incorrectly tested’ players at all.]


  59. Luckily the Scottish Government was either in a forgiving mood in relation to the ‘misunderstanding’ or are they still viewed as the establishment club and not allowed to be punished by our political leaders!

    Although suggesting the possibility of conspiracy I doubt that the present First Minister would have been hesitant in taking action if it was not for our football governing bodies hadn’t quickly taken pre-emptive action.

    Just a thought I wonder if the previous FM would have got involved in the relegation debate. I suspect he would have!


  60. What exactly was the “Misunderstanding”……Something that could have resulted in the increase of fatal casualties in the wider community, and a banning order slapped on fitba’ nationwide…………Noo that IS in the public’s interest !.

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