The hours immediately after the First Tier Tribunal reports on Rangers use of Employee Benefits Trusts, which the BBC discovered is due this month, to loan money (!) to staff what happens at Hampden will be most interesting. SFA president, Campbell Ogilvie, as a director, was legally responsible for Rangers when they started using EBTs and benefited from one himself but he has refused to resign and the SFA have declined to put him on gardening leave, pending a public investigation.
Instead, SFA chief executive, Stewart Regan, told press the Association had investigated Ogilvie’s contribution to the matter and found he had no case to answer, despite widespread scepticism that any investigation whatsoever was held into the president’s involvement in the issue.
If, despite protests from former Rangers directors that the club acted properly at all times, the FTT upholds the position of HMRC, that Rangers incorrectly failed to pay £94m tax, Ogilvie will surely walk (away), as the SFA will have to instigate disciplinary proceedings on the club which inherited Rangers membership, for deeds done while the president was in an executive position at Ibrox.
Even our new friend Charles Green would find it unpalatable that a man responsible for the subsequent penalty remains in charge of the body imposing the penalty. We’ve said “Ogilvie will surely walk” before, of course, only to witness ever-higher standards of brass neck, but if he pauses for an hour before resigning, let it be to give those of us on the outside of the game what is needed, a full and independent inquiry into the game, how it is administered and controlled. Before the year is out we are likely to learn that our game was violated for more than a decade by people at the very top. A charlatan was expelled from the game earlier this year while the owner of a new club, without financial track record, is trying to raise millions from fans.
In any other European country, even Italy, the inquiry would already be under way.