The very last thing anyone connected with Rangers wanted to read this morning is that Andrew Ellis, Craig Whyte’s former associate, is suing the Rangers owner for 24.9% of the club’s shares. This puts a further legal impediment in the way of any potential transfer of shares or stadium assets from Whyte to a new party. It remains to be seen if Ellis is in a position to legally enforce his claim however the veracity of his claim may be moot.
Prospective Rangers buyers do not have time to spend in court hearings and appeals before the start of the new season. If a phoenix (or even a CVA) is to be put in place it is likely that those with a claim, any claim, will need to be satisfied.
This development comes a week after Whyte transferred the security over Ibrox he holds through Rangers FC Group Ltd to Liberty Corporate Ltd.
Legal issues over ownership of shares and assets aside, Rangers’ administrators still have to deal with creditors, in particular, HMRC, who will soon learn if their tax demand against the club has been upheld by the First Tier Tribunal, and Ticketus. Duff and Phelps were denied the right to set aside the deal which Ticketus struck with Rangers to buy thousands of seasons tickets, leaving a path open for Ticketus to present a legal challenge to any deal which does not recognise their interests.
Chances of an early exit from administration appear to be diminishing by the day. Motherwell were in administration for four days short of two years between April 2002 and April 2004. If Rangers are not out of administration on the morning the new season kicks off they would start on minus 10 points.