Fit & Proper test opens Pandora’s Box


I hear the SFA had asked for clarification on Craig Whyte’s alleged disqualification as a director, without getting confirmation one way or another, since the issue was initially brought to their attention by the landmark BBC documentary, Rangers: The Inside Story.  Rangers disclosure to the Plus Exchange (where the club’s shares are traded) on Wednesday that this specific BBC allegation was correct, was the information the SFA needed before they were in a position to act and apply a Fit and Proper Person (FPP) test to Whyte.

Dramatic though it sounds, failing a FPP test, in itself, is only likely to cause superficial damage to a club or its owner.  An owner would need to resign as a director but he could allow the other directors to continue running the business, or he could appoint a proxy to take control of the business, which is often the way controllers run football clubs anyway.

What is of more interest, however, are matters likely to be disclosed as part of the SFA investigation.  The Association would require Mr Whyte to explain what he did to be barred from holding a directorship for seven years, something the BBC lawyers would be able to question Whyte on in the witness box, should he actually sue, instead of repeatedly threatening to do so.

Of most interest to the SFA will be Rangers financial submission for their Uefa licence, which enabled the club to be nominated as Scotland’s participants in this season’s Champions League.  A condition of participation in Uefa competitions is that no debts to tax authorities due on 31 December the preceding year remains unpaid on 31 March.

In September HM Revenue and Customs gained permission from the court to freeze £2.3m of Rangers money in connection with an unpaid tax bill.  The principle element of this bill has not been disputed by Rangers.  The SFA will now be keen to establish if any part of this bill was in connection to taxes due in prior to 31 December 2010.  If it was, Celtic were entitled to be Scotland’s Champions League representatives, when overcoming the likes of Malmo stood between them and a £15m pay-day.

This is a legal minefield for the SFA chief exec, Stewart Regan, who has my sympathy. Things are about to become interesting.

While we are on the subject of that £2.3m tax bill, HM Revenue and Customs are due to get their hands on the cash after Friday next week, the last day Rangers are able to dispute the debt. If Rangers enter administration prior to that date, the cash would revert to the administrator and the club’s secured creditors would be entitled to it.

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  1. TT – I think ole Johnny is right, but let’s be honest you’re probably both right!



    Neale Cooper kicks Celtic player was as much a part of the game then as the Mah-cah-roon bars and the SPEAR!mint chewing gum.

  2. My dear,dear,dear,friend.. Tiny Tim



    Pal… yer last submission. gets Ma Vote!



    Ye goat it awe there.. Chapter and Verse..



    We need a Strong and Bitter Rival…the Stroanger the Better…



    That is how Business is Done..



    Ye must Create interest,in order tae Flourish.



    If that Rivalry went Kaput, with the Demise of Our..



    Maist Capable Rival..



    Interest wid wane..as



    A Celtic, League Championship Walkover,year in, year oot, wid soon


    get “old”… as the kids say.






    Ah am also right there , with ye , in the matter of Pining fur Us tae get the Heck oota this League.



    Ah am sure that we wull, eventually.



    And if the G.A. go Defunct..which Ah am sure they wullnae,by the Way!



    Then,it wid only serve tae increase that Yearning, by us, the Celtic Fans , tae get oota Dodge.



    Fur,like it or no..



    Celtic and The G.A. are Jined at the Hip.



    This League Set up that we hiv , just noo.. in the S.P.L.






    Baith Celtic and the G.A. .. Going Hammer and Tongs in a Bitter and Unending Rivalry.





    yer pal.. who likes ye the Best.

  3. South Of Tunis on

    SAT NAV /SAT NAG – ?



    My in his 90s father recently told me that his memory is so bad , he really needs a —–



    LAV -NAV.

  4. Tiny Tim,



    You’ll be telling me next that the time Steven Naismith was spewing venom into the face of a referee was at Ibrox, not Parkead ;-)

  5. BlantyreKev - Hail Hail to the Kano Foundation on

    I might be feeling too Christmassy too early, but the answer to the Rangers conundrum for the SFA, well more particularly Stewart Regan, is going to be hard to find without prejudice entwined with every bit of evidence presented, and nigh on impossible to enforce without incurring horrendous personal harassment. I don’t envy him, regardless of the salary.



    It is one that all of us in our imaginary world would deal with pretty simply. Throw the book at them, fine them, ban them, end them. But if true knowledge is in knowing that you know nothing then I know enough to know that it is not me that should be deciding Rangers’ future/punishment, it is better placed at neutral arbiter’s door.



    So is Stewart Regan the neutral arbiter, or is he capable of being custodian of a body prepared and capable of being that arbiter? Certainly over the entire history of its being it was not prepared or capable or willing. Quite the reverse in fact, it has been proven to be unjust and biased to the detriment of any Rangers adversary. Has the last year been enough to change that? I have my doubts.



    I would belittle and harass them at every opportunity but the truth is that the history and social entanglement of that Club makes Rangers as near to an immovable object as football science could depict, and the SFA are no irresistible force.



    Stewart Regan is human, one man, heading an organisation that will most likely resist any justice that destabilises Rangers. I am prepared to assume that he personally would like to be custodian of a true and just office and tenure. Undoubtedly though he will be advised, lobbied and influenced by contributors who are not coming from that standpoint.



    So it is very possible, and most likely, that a body of evidence will be presented to him with caveats, excuses and doublespeak. This will be with a view to an end. Any end that ensures the minimum disruption to the monstrosity that rampages through Scottish football, permeating Scottish society and agent provocateur to its travails.



    I’m not asking him to see through all of that, he is not superhuman. But he needs to be strong enough to assess the situation and resist the pressures to succumb to the easiest way out. And that will depend on exactly what type of pressure is brought to bear.



    “Refusal to believe until proof is given is a rational position; denial of all outside of limited experience is absurd.”


    – Annie Besant



    Let’s not kid ourselves, he’s getting it in the neck from Rangers adversaries too. Certain independent Irish based journalists for example. He must doubt where the truth lies, who has an agenda, how to know who is being honest.



    “Doubt, indulged and cherished, is in danger of becoming denial; but if honest, and bent on thorough investigation, it may soon lead to full establishment of the truth.”


    – Ambrose Bierce



    If he is to oversee a just settlement of the flagrant abuses of the rules I would contend that he will not be pilloried and criticised into that. He will need encouragement, counter evidence and support. But he will also need to know that there can be no ‘whytewashes’ and that analysis, scrutiny and digestion will be thorough of his action. It is demanded that his action is just and that any weakness will be met by an equal and opposite reaction.



    “It’s not denial. I’m just selective about the reality I accept.”


    – Bill Watterson



    Wind the clock back 2 years or more and any of the Rangers cases, be it administration, banned directors or potential reincarnations would have been railroaded through a kangaroo justice system with a nod and a hand shake. The question is whether Stewart Regan and last year’s shenanigans and partial realignment have simply thrown a spanner in those works or if the machine has been recalibrated.



    But in the words of Mark Twain, “Denial ain’t just a river in Egypt”.



    Every bit if evidence from the entire history of the 100 years football war tells us that there will be no justice here, but there’s the only chink of light there’s ever been. What price a new CEO for the SFA within a year? Poor guy, regardless of what happens.




    Toomuchtimeonthetraintoday CSC

  6. Ah wonder how that initial Tete and Tete between


    Broonie and the Newcastle Reps ,panned oot?



    Wull Broonie, Fall fur the Siren Call of the Geordies?






    Wull he remain true and faithfull tae the Celtic Cause?



    We should know pretty soon.. Which wey.



    Broonie wull Jump.




  7. Kojo



    There is no other economic form of perspicacity than the fact that the Darnel will prevail.



    Anything else is just wishful and naive thinking.



    Now knowing that they will prevail.



    Celtic must fight to ensure that they are PUNISHED accordingly,and fairly.




  8. RalphWaldoEllison-is Neil Lennon Season 2011-12 on




    2 December, 2011 at 15:46



    Really appreciate all of that, and liked the “petec” comment.



    My child is in fact a grown man who, six weeks ago was diagnosed with the same disease that struck Jimmy Johnstone: ALS or Amyotrophic Laeral Sclerosis.


    No known cause and no known cure, so the clock is ticking.



    Nevertheless, all positive thoughts, prayers and support are very welcome.


    As a family we have moved from shock and devastation and into acceptance and planning.



    Apart from JJ, baseball player Lou Gehrig was a notable victim, as was our own John Cushley. My son is in good company, but so too are they.



    Hope to get over to CP later this season with my son and his brother (we are all US based). Bhoys weekend in every sense. Maybe catch up then.



    Meanwhile, Thanks.






  9. Johnnyclash 16,23


    The game that you mention was actually played in Aberdeen.A deliberate act pre-planned,as was told to me,at the time by a Aberdeen employee.Slan.

  10. Cooper committed the same 3 second assault on Charlie Nick,in a pre season game for Aston Villa v Celtic at CP im sure.

  11. My dear,dear,dear,friend.. Tiny Tim




    Like ye say..



    It is a Fact of Life,over there in Scotland, that the G.A. are the


    Darling’s of the Establishment..



    Therefore, The G.A. will Not Go Oota the Business.



    Sure, Celtic kin dae their best tae Ensure that The G.A. are


    suitably Punished fur their Sins ..



    But, Ah am afraid that Celtic do not Hiv Enuff “Juice” tae


    ensure that Suitable Punishment will be meted,oot tae those Blue





    My Big Pal.. Says that the G.A. will Wiggle Oota the Main Tax Thingmy…and will only suffer a Small and Insignificant Set of Reprovals.



    and if My Big Pal is Correct..






    The G.A. will soon coming roaring back.. as



    Strong as Before..





    yer pal..who likes the best.

  12. Kojo



    I have mentioned before that my seat at Paradise is next to Scott Browns Mum ,and his step dad.



    We get on like a house on fire.They are the nicest of nice people.



    Born and bred Fifers like myself.



    If Scott doesn’t play then they don’t attend the match.



    His step dad is a Celtic supporter,his mum is a Scott Brown supporter ,who enjoy’s watching her boy play at paradise.



    Whenever i ask “is he signing?”



    I get the standard answer.”He doesn’t discuss it with us.”



    Now i don’t believe that.



    What they don’t say and never have said is.



    Scott loves it here and wants to stay,but there are other considerations.



    They have never once said to me that he wants to stay.



    You see they are very decent people ,they see my fervour and love for Celtic in the flesh.They would not lie to me,they have too much decency.




    Reading between the lines.


    He has strung this out,so that he can see what his options are.



    I do not blame him.


    The great Paul McStay did the same.




    I believe that he will go if he gets a better financial offer.



    His agent will want his till to ring.




  13. BlantyreKev – Hail Hail to the Kano Foundation says:


    2 December, 2011 at 16:52



    Absolutely fantastic post, in every sense.



    Well reasoned and very well articulated.



    Something to be said for long train journeys.:>)

  14. Young McGeoch snubs Walter.





    “Asked if former Rangers boss Smith, who stepped down at the end of last season, had tried to keep him at Ibrox, the midfielder was keen to stress it was not a snub, but said: “Yes, I was in a few meetings with Rangers before I came here and there were a lot of things said.”



    Welcome to Celtic young fella. See how the meeja spin your words.

  15. googybhoy ♥ Celtic says:


    2 December, 2011 at 17:15



    Young McGeoch snubs Walter.





    Nobody snubs Walter!



    They merely decided not to renew his contract, don’tchaknow!

  16. googybhoy ♥ Celtic says:


    2 December, 2011 at 17:15



    You sometimes wonder who decides which players take the media conferences.



    Some are experts at saying nothing, Paddy for example weaves his way round them like players on a park, ultimately leaving their notepads empty



    Dylan is too young. Bad move.

  17. Draw 4 euro 2012 live on rte2 for any fellow Irish based Tims, I hear capello is crappin it that we get ingerland!!!!!

  18. does anybody else think the sfa will put all the blame onto peat and smith?


    i think both of them were at the helm then.


    Both have conveniently left theyre positions now, so worthy scapegoats.

  19. !!Bada Bing!! says:



    2 December, 2011 at 17:02



    I remember Cooper’s ‘maim a man in 3’ technique. Although undoubtedly good at it Cooper never had the same ‘career-finisher’ flair that Ion Ferguson had.



    Every Celtic – Rangers game, home or away the whistle would go, Celtic would play the ball to McStay then as night follows day Ion would mangle the maestro’s ankle with his signature tackle. Never booked either. Well it was the SPL, after all.

  20. i dont think the sfa will be to bothered if euefa punish tem for the rangers fiasco, i.e.


    them in europe while desputing said wee tax case.


    if the sfa are found to have been in collusion with thems, the member teams will be barred from partaking in european competitions.


    this will suit them, as it means that if thems cant, then no one else can.

  21. goldstar10 says:



    2 December, 2011 at 17:21




    If you read his words it is straightforward. He is a Celtic supporter and wanted to come back. He did renew his contract.


    It is the headlines and journalistic infilling that spins it.


    They like to spin it so that he looks as though he “rejected Rangers” and “snubs ” Walter.



    Despicable attempt to undermine the young lad and set him up a a figure of hate.

  22. Joe Filippis Haircut on

    Scot Brown could have told his agent at anytime that he wanted to re-sign so get it sorted his agent who is acting on behalf of Broonie would have sorted it out at Scots request.However,that has not happened therefor Broonie has never told his agent that he wants to stay with Celtic its as simple as that we supporters have to get used to the idea that Broonie is looking to play his football else where.H.H.

  23. Paul67 et al



    Watching the Euro Draw on the Beeb right now, reminds me too much of the Eurovision Song contest, without the songs, and thankfully without Terry Wogan. Still nul point mind you!

  24. fergus slayed the blues on

    Surprise ,surprise the SFA are in talks about league reconstruction ,what’s the chances of a new one big league system in Scottish football next season


    hail hail

  25. googybhoy- No doubt his words were twisted- but we were 100% sure they would do that anyway, so why put him in that position in the first place?



    We need to think smarter than that.

  26. fergus slayed the blues on

    So CW and the ragers seem to have been economical with the truth or were just confused regarding the rules .My guess would be the latter ,after all when the rules have never seemed to apply to you for all these years then it would be easy to forget .


    One thing I will say though is ,it seems that it is a given that CW was struck of in 2000 for 7 yrs if the SFA declaration was that it referred to the 1st yr of your ban then why would the SFA even contact ragers .It would be a simple case of nothing to see here timmy .


    Why the need to keep calling the ragers hotline for answers .


    I smell S@@TE


    hail hail

  27. Right Bhoys an early quiz question.



    Neale Cooper was booked after just seven seconds for a tackle on Charlie Nicholas in the early 80’s.



    I am certain that the match was at Pittodrie,but others have stated that it was at Parkhead.



    Can anyone prove where the match took place?




  28. Reconstruction



    check back bhoys a couple of years , when Walter flagged Dignity’s money problems , he also mentioned league reform, one big league. Back to 18 teams but with a play off so that there are 4 OF games for the telly.



    At the time, I remember posting this should mark our card to leave the league, because as a top class outfit we are doomed if this happens,



    re the old Dons team, WGS was brilliant , you need to like the sport (as well as you team) you could not fail to recognise that he wad a very very clever player. Big Rougvie , a guy in the front stand was standing up giving Rougvie dogs abuse at a throw in, the big man turned round menacingly and I have never seen anyone return to a seat position so quickly. A very very good team.




  29. Serge (10) Tommy Burns says:


    2 December, 2011 at 17:55



    Germany, Holland, Denmark & Portugal. Some group that.






    “Group of death” doesn’t really sum that one up, they’ll need to think something else up

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