Newco spend cheerleader Smith: Destination Insolvency


10 years ago today Jimmy Calderwood was manager of Aberdeen. If a nostalgic journalist troubled the Tanned One on what his old club could do to prevent Celtic disappearing further over the horizon, can you imagine him saying: “The board need to bridge the gap with Celtic, spend big and put Aberdeen back where they belong”?

It would be a ridiculous suggestion. Celtic turnover circa £65m more than Aberdeen, trying to match the champions in any meaningful way would jeopardise the club’s 112 year history.

Calderwood, isn’t so daft. But Walter Smith, who 10 years ago was Rangers manager, now advises Newco to spend big in order to catch and stop Celtic. Newco will turnover around £50m less than Celtic.

Football clubs who are engaged in a competitive struggle, either cut their cloth to suit their circumstances, or are destined for insolvency. Of the tens of thousands of registered football clubs in the world, Newco, more than any, should be wedded to a strategy of matching expenditure to income.  They should know better.

Live within your means, pay your bills, build up a track record of responsible trading. Develop youth talent to the best of your ability, plan seasons in advance, and you have an excellent chance of improving as a football team year-on-year.  Whip up unreasonable expectations, become a serial loss-maker, crave short-term hits like an out of control addict, and your chances of sustained development are zero.

It beggars belief that in 2017, not five years since the shadow of liquidation walked up Ibrox’ marble staircase listing every asset in the building for sale, that a hugely experienced authority is putting a futile trophy hunt before the financial security of the club.

The ball is rolling on this now. The vast majority of fans only hear “Spend, spend, spend”. Responsible voices suggesting Newco spend what they earn, irrespective of the consequences on the league table, will be abused as heretics (been there).

David Murray’s ‘speculate to accumulate’ narrative needed Rangers to be competitive at the top end of an inflating market. It worked while these conditions were in place but fell apart when the market in England softened in 2001. Rangers could no longer sell their duds at a profit and the game was over.  It’s not been a viable strategy in Scotland for 15 years.  The subsequent crash and burn was inevitable (although liquidation wasn’t).

Any team wedded to a strategy which requires them to spend money they can ill afford, to achieve an outcome which is beyond their reach, is destined for insolvency.

Is competing for second place really that bad that you need to risk it all to ‘stop Celtic reaching 10’?  Aberdeen, Hearts and Motherwell seem to enjoy their football in this reality, most fans pitch up week-after-week despite lesser ambitions.  I haven’t heard a single voice of reason on the financial strategy across the city from within their own ranks.

You know how this story ends.



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  1. Paul,


    Amidst all this talk of spend spend spend or even a few sane voices at Newco that say “we don’t want to go down that road again” sight is sometimes lost that there is really no decision for them to make.


    Their new club simply doesn’t have the money to spend. They can’t spend what they don’t have because they don’t have it. The idea they have to “decide” is an illusion. They don’t even have the ability to make that decision.


    The only way the current situation changes is if one of the following happens:


    -they get a massive infusion of debt or equity,or


    -a new euro set up excludes Celtic,or


    -a new euro set up includes us AND them





    Very good article,fawn fawn(!)



    I’m in the speculate to accumulate category. But only when the money is there and the homework has been done.



    Similar to MON’s introduction.



    Sevco can’t access the funds,and they don’t have anyone in the ranks who can identify a decent player.



    Seems the cardigan comments were simply a waste of time,from a man who still believes in Santa.



    Btw,the alternatives to his take on things is brutal honesty,at best. Which won’t go down well with their rent-a-mob entitled support.

  3. If Jimmy: Good to see you back. Hopefully you get your timternet issues sorted out soon. Happy New Year to you.



    What’s the weather like in Dubai?

  4. Deary ,deary me.What makes it better is the fawning,knee bending morons on Monkey Media call him”Sir Walter”.Utter nonsense.They are finished,end of.


    I am loving this,and it has still a long way to run.

  5. Tim Malone Will Tell on

    Makes me laugh how keen the hunguffery press are to see the back of Moussa Dembele.



    Can you just imagine what Brendan Rodgers would do to the Sevco huns with another £30 million to spend? – just think about that one for a minute. Whether Moussa goes or stays looks like a lose/lose for hunnery whichever way you look at it.



    Interesting that Brendan was ‘talking up’ Kolo Toure’s academy in Africa wasn’t it?



    Still – I would much rather we had a manager with a ‘magic rolodex’ full of ex Brentford loanees and England under 21 names from 4 years ago – wouldn’t you?

  6. Anyone pass by the Edwardian toilet block today ?



    Any work going on to put up the roof netting ?

  7. Hello again all you young rebels.



    Well thats the first night of official training over after the festive


    break for our Celtic bhoys here in Oz, 28 degs. and the Guinness


    was pouring out of me by the gallon normally it would be the


    other way about. Our bhoys took down their usual bags of Celtic


    tops for any new lads that didn’t have any and with the size of


    them they wouldn’t fit them anyway, must be that Aussie sunshine


    makes them grow so big.


    Couple of new African lads have joined us and one was reluctant


    to take a top, his mate said” Sir he thinks he has to pay for it ‘ so


    the wee mhan with his usual tact and diplomacy said ” Ye don’t


    need tae pay any hing ye jist need tae support the Cellic ” don’t


    know where he gets it from.


    Does anybody else think animals are taking over the world?


    Think about it, we have coups all over the middle east.


    Guerrillas governing now in South America.


    Now we have all these squirrels emerging out of Govan.


    Thank god we got the lions, the Lisbon ones that is.


    O.K i’ll get my donkey jacket on the way oot :-})


    H.H Mick

  8. Spend spend spend.


    Was it not Vivian Westwood who uttered these immortal words,


    When she won the pools way back in the seventies?

  9. BRTH



    If you are still about, could you post your email address please, or perhaps get mine from Paul.


    Was hoping to visit Lisbon and was wondering if there is any places left on the trip you are organising?

  10. Tim Malone Will Tell on

    Thinking this one through – I would really, really enjoy it if Walter came back.



    Maybe we could help the huns start a campaign?

  11. 50 shades of green on

    Its not so much “Spend Spend Spend ” these days is it?



    Its more Borrow Borrow we will borrow on. ( and if you could still pay the wages of the guy we are borrowing that would be nice thank you).



    Every time I read something about this Govan mob I get the tune to ” Only fools and Horses ” , stuck in my head.



    Shambles then, Shambles now , Vanished forever. Should be the Huns motto.

  12. I for one concurr with Walter the holey cardigan and goat ****** Smith.



    Please SPEND SPEND SPEND your way into oblivion never to return Hun Zinternational FC.



    Please. it’s a great option.



    I’d love it, just love it if you do this.




  13. To be honest, this looks like the only CLQ’s we will have actually planned for IMO,never has been ‘seasons in advance’.

  14. 50 shades of green, Favourite Uncle.


    Yes thanks lhads just realised my mistook ,you are both correct.


    Thank you.

  15. Awe_Naw_No_Annoni_Oan_Anaw_Noo on

    Help us to improve Ultimate-Guitar.com Take our survey!









    The B and D are correct if you play the 7th it will sound wrong


    This version she is said to have sung at her 79th birthday


    Have fun







    Botox and nose drops and needles for knitting,




    Walkers and handrails and new dental fittings,


    Am D7 G C


    Bundles of mag-a-zines tied up in string,


    G Em Am B


    These are a few of my fav-o-rite things.





    Cadillacs and cataracts, hearing aids and glasses,




    Polident and Fixodent and false teeth in glasses,


    Am D7 G C


    Pacemakers, golf carts and porches with swings,


    G Em Am B


    These are a few of my favorite things.





    When the pipes leak,


    Am D


    When the bones creak,


    G C


    When the knees go bad,


    C D G C


    I simply re-member my favorite things,


    C D G


    And then I don’t feel so bad.





    Hot tea and crumpets and corn pads for bunions,




    No spicy hot food or food cooked with onions,


    Am D7 G C


    Bathrobes and heating pads and hot meals they bring,


    G Em Am B


    These are a few of my favorite things.






    Back pain, confused brains and no need for sinnin’,




    Thin bones and fractures and hair that is thinnin’,


    Am D7 G C


    And we won’t mention our short shrunken frames,


    G Em Am B


    When we re-member our favorite things.





    When the joints ache,


    Am D


    When the hips break,


    G C


    When the eyes grow dim,


    C D G C


    Then I re-member the great life I’ve had,


    C D G


    And then I don’t feel so bad.

  16. Bobby


    There were a good few on here, you and I included, who advocated Celtic being run in the exact way it is now, certainly with regard to investment.


    The introduction of a decent manager, and a few decent players , had resulted in exactly what we thought it would. Sold out stadium, entertaining football and CL football.


    Whilst CL football can never be guaranteed, we certainly go into this coming season qualifying rounds in a stronger position than for many years.


    Paul was one of the biggest critics of the strategy we encouraged. ” Every penny coming in was being spent”


    Two problems:


    It wasn’t enough coming in to sustain progress.


    It wasn’t being spent correctly.



    Fast forward 9 months. This is the Celtic model we wanted. It’ll work.

  17. Hi fhellas



    Just popping on to see if the Eboue work permit has been sorted yet ? Anyone heard…



    It’s too damn quiet csc



    Big Wavy

  18. Does anyone know the rules about corner flags for home games?


    I thought they should either be a certain colour or have the sfa logo, or sfa badge.


    I noticed at the last ibrox game that they’re corner flags where blue background


    With the grfc badge on them.


    Are they allowed to do this?

  19. English football’s identity is now a cash cow. Clubs have lost their individualism and no longer stand for anything other than Tv money, gluttonous wages and transfer fees.



    Scottish football needs to embrace is evolving identity as a place of development and learning. Whether it be players making their way or have lost their way in the footballing world.



    Problem is that folk, like Walter, still have a club and the game on a pedestal that will never return.



    Celtic has embraced an identity of a development club where success and progress go hand in hand. We have a back story that sells the club and also a modern day track record of players leaving for greater riches. A cocktail of dreams. We’ve accepted that our place as European heavyweights has gone but aspire to be that respected underdog that on our day can deliver a hefty punch and do things correctly.



    Hopefully over the next few seasons we will see more academy bhoys make it alongside purchased guys.

  20. blantyretim is praying for the Knox family on

    BRHT or Anyone



    With the Portugese cup final being held in the Estadio National on 27/05/2017 do you think there will be restrictions in place re any visit arrangements for 50th anniversary



    I know that previous visitors have had access onto playing surface. will there be any restrictions this year to keep the playing surface in good condition?

  21. Twisty



    absolutely 100% nag on.



    There is nout to moan about on the footballing front but (and there is always a but) I think we are still underselling ourselves by not going for the Messi’s and Ronaldo’s of this world. We should be competing to win the CL every year.



    With hun Zinternational FC looking like they are going to SPEND SPEND SPEND we will need to do the same to keep up with them in their quest for Universal domination.



    MWD am i kiddin or am I not? :@-)))

  22. glendalystonsils on

    Bhoys…just in case there are any hun lurkers on here (Maybe even Sir Wally) , please do not scoff at their big spending plans!


    We should be encouraging the lemmings to scamper towards the edge of the cliff!

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