Goodnight loose affiliation of Blue Knights


Paul Simon wrote about ‘a loose affiliation of millionaires and billionaires’ but if you want to raise money to rescue a company you need more than a loose affiliation.  ‘The rebels’ at Celtic managed this in 1994 (somehow), but Paul Murray’s Blue Knights affiliation unravelled over a few days.

While Duff and Phelps were casting aspersions on the SPL for spiking their plans to announce a preferred bidder last week, the Blue Knights were already struggling to pull £0.5m together as a covenant to secure a period of exclusive rights to buy the club.

18 years ago a Celtic supporter walked into a branch of Bank of Scotland and paid £1m into Celtic’s bank account to bring it back under agreed limits and prevent the club going into administration – without any security or negotiating rights.  A discrete but hugely important act by a man still on our board.  No one from the Rangers consortium was prepared to gamble half as much last week, they even asked Ticketus, finance provider for Craig Whyte’s doomed venture, to stump up the non-refundable cash!  The ticket agency declined.

The Celtic consortium soon fell apart with a modest degree of acrimony but personal issues were put to the side until the job of securing the club was complete.  Paul Murray’s group was less fortunate.  As a chartered accountant Murray would have been fully aware of the Employee Benefit Trusts which brought the club to its knees.  What he knew and whether he benefited are likely to be some of the questions other consortium members were asking.  He was not best placed to lead the recovery.

Murray also tried to keep a broad church together, from wealthy but detached Rangers fans to various elements of the support.  This sounded ambitious from the off.

The most important comment from the Blue Knights yesterday was “The consortium believes that the whole deal process has become incredibly complex and it is critical that a preferred bidder is appointed this week.”

If it’s possible for the words “incredibly complex” and “critical” to be an understatement this is the occasion.  The Scottish Premier League and Scottish Football League announce their fixtures in the middle of June.  If Rangers are to phoenix before then they better hurry up and die.  The liquidation process will take weeks (if it goes smoothly) and can be open to legal challenge.  Stadium ownership has also to be secured and the claims of Ticketus and Andrew Ellis have to be satisfied.

Add to the mix creditors, the big tax case, punishments from the SFA for their on-going inquiry into the last takeover, potential punishments from the SPL inquiry into improperly registered players, increasingly widespread opposition from within the SPL and the rest of Scottish football to a place being created for a phoenix and you get the picture.

The last few years reads like a lesson in how to destroy a huge football club.  Chances of SPL football at Ibrox next season?  No more than 50%.

Bids for the original canvass painting of Neil Lennon by US based artist, Joseph Gormley, have hit an incredible £500. Keep an eye on the auction, which ends on Thursday, here.

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  1. Dontbrattbakkinanger on

    You keep telling me yes


    But you don’t mean it


    You keep telling me Ng!


    And try to lean it



    You’re giving me buts and maybe


    You know this will drive me crazy


    Why can’t you tell it like it is?



    And let your yeah be yeah


    And your Ng! be Ng!, now


    Let your yeah be yeah


    And your Ng! be Ng! now

  2. Neil canamalar Lennon hunskelper extrordinaire on

    so £134M + interest


    price of the shares £1


    Thr price of the assets ???


    how much for corrupt fc ???

  3. pedrocaravanachio67 on

    doh….. posted this and you do a new article Paul!!!


    my timings poor.



    pedrocaravanachio67 on 17 April, 2012 at 14:24 said:


    Hello guys, humour me on this one and add your own thoughts.


    I believe, next year we are without sponsorship in 1 or maybe even 2 of our national cups. Then the following year the Clydesdale bank sponsorship runs out in the league. Scottish football will be in dissaray ( apparently ) if rangers are not involved and we dont have sponsors.


    We’re going to be getting Champions league money and we’ve already got a good business strategy. Why dont we offer to sponsor the cups / league?


    Could the SPL / SFA / SFL afford to reject the notion?



    Just a thought and tongue firmly planted in my cheek.



    HH PC67

  4. “Collins steps inside Murray, Shoots, oooooh its a wonderful goal by John Collins, 37 minutes gone and Collins scores his 7th goal of the season, He gave goram no chance at the near post”



    pick it out fat boy

  5. Canalamar



    I think you’d have a good chance with a bag of cans and a score.



    Much the same total outlay which took their fans to Manchester a wee while ago…




  6. Neil canamalar Lennon hunskelper extrordinaire on



    is kestral ok ??


    got the devil dugs jags to get this week but he can wait


    wheres the queue for bidders ??

  7. Paul67


    Almost lost a mouthful of coffee over my keyboard with this beauty:


    “If Rangers are to phoenix before then they better hurry up and die.”



    Very well put

  8. Brogan, Rogan etc’s recent posts on RTC are terrific. I urge everyone to read them (you’ll need more than a wee break, though – these are at least 2 coffees long)



    The murky handshake banking culture he describes has only come into public knowledge since the roof was ripped off by the recent debt hurricane – how long before everything goes under wraps once more?



    One gets the feeling a lot more of this would unravel if the right kind of investigative resources were applied – any chance of getting BRT&H in the same room as Douglas Fraser and Mark Daly?

  9. Paul67 – 50%? I think that is generous Paul. I would go for half that myself.



    As you point out the number of fences now in front of them is daunting, with every one of them having the potential to be a Becher’s Brook.



    Long way to go I expect they will pull up short.

  10. OK, just one –



    In olden days a glimpse of stocking


    Was looked on as something shocking


    Now heaven knows….




  11. I like it, Paul:



    “While Duff and Phelps were casting dispersions on the SPL …”



    Is that like disprin & aspirin: they have the same effect, except disprin costs a lot more?




  12. Canalamar



    Kestrel, monsieur you are spoiling them…



    And regards the queue for bidders – They’ve only got a bidder now. So I think that’s more just a guy standing himself then a queue…



    I think your score would get something more rewarding out of Burger King – and it might last longer…




  13. Serge, you’ve just described one if my favourite goals against the huns, right footed by Collins as well…still remember the bedlam after that with the quick kick off

  14. Mncelt, it’s the best thing that could happen to them. Conversely, muddling along is the worst thing.



    RogueLeader, you could be right.



    Folly Folly, aye.

  15. wonkyradar on 17 April, 2012 at 14:28 said:


    Lenny might as well have kicked Norris in the profiteroles when he ran onto the pitch…for the all the hysterical over reaction there has been…he will get it with both barrels anyway.



    The problem I have with losing your cool is more to do with strategy- its a golden boon to the MSM: the LL do cartwheels when he gets amped & the hatchetmen & wrecking crews start their hypocritical hollering like Victorian Vicars with a tar habit…Lenny losing his cool is like these Bannockheads finding a treasure chest.



    no matter what we need to get behind Lenny. God knows he has enough detractors in this anaemic age of hyper-criticism & over sensitivity…

  16. philvisreturns on

    Paul67 – The last few years reads like a lesson in how to destroy a huge football club.



    Among all the jolly jokes and jelly and ice cream we often lose sight of this.



    It’s breathtaking what Sir David Murray and co. have managed to achieve in the space of a decade or so.



    They’ve taken one of Scotland’s biggest institutions, an internationally famous sporting brand, a football club that attracts tens of thousands of paying customers every fortnight, a business that only a few years ago enjoyed both enormous structural advantages over all its competitors and the goodwill of half of Scotland … and turned it into a ragged leper of a company, starved of cash, its knees buckling under a crippling burden of debt that grows heavier by the day, staggering towards its demise.



    In its own small scale way, this is an achievement the equal of anything Sir Fred Goodwin or the smartest guys in the room at Enron managed to pull off.



    If Rangers was a horse, it wouldn’t be allowed to suffer like this.



    You’d need a heart of stone not to laugh. (thumbsup)

  17. Awe_Naw_No_Annoni_Oan_Anaw_Noo on

    How can Rangers or ANY Newco have complied with SPL rule A.2.5.4



    31st of March was 17 days ago



    or have they used SPL rule 2.6 and been given an exemption ?



    If they have been given that exemption then they have until the 1st of June SPL Rule H6.1



    If they have not then it is ALREADY far too late






    HAil HAil

  18. South Of Tunis on

    “YiNG ToNG, YiNG ToNG,


    YiNG ToNG,


    YiNG, ToNG, YiNG ToNG, iddle I po ”



    Bluebottle – South East Sicilian ToNGs Ya Bass

  19. Neil canamalar Lennon hunskelper extrordinaire on



    I was just thinking about the big park to let the dug aff the lead, I mean the place is no stranger to mad rabid dugs now is it :o)


    Problem being I wont be able to let the dug aff the lead till he gets his jags, so its a bit of a catch22, innit :oD

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