Playing poker with a billionaire


Assuming Dave King has more than 50% of the shareholding in newco Rangers, what does Mike Ashley do knowing he will not be in charge of the club after an EGM in March?

Take the defeat on one of his chins, let King’s lawyers loose on the merchandising and other deals he’s paid for and put the whole thing down to experience?

Well, possibly, but he has other options.

Ashley has yet to loan the club the money required to pay this month’s wages.  He could simply not transfer the cash, but in this event he will expect King to step in.

King with his accomplices, and others, have recently offered to loan the club money, albeit with strings attached.  If King truly has the enough votes in the bag to secure a majority, it’s likely they will loan the club enough cash to get beyond the EMG, without conditions attached.  The directors would have no option but to accept this cash, pay the bills and cede control in due course.  Ashley is owed £3m, repayable in April, for loans made late last year, so King et al will need to find cash to cover that in their ‘warchest’.

This is likely to be close to King’s narrative.  He will not have called the EGM unless the cash is available to get the club over the line this season.  I’m not prepared to countenance the possibility that he’s called it certain in the knowledge he will fall short.

I’ve always thought some kind of Grand Coalition, between Ashley and a collection of local legitimate businessmen would be the most effective forward plan, but Ashley has been so maligned by PR ‘close to King’ that this doesn’t seem to happening.  Ashley will either have to take his chance of retaining merchandising, stadium advertising and future shirt sponsorship rights, or make his play now.

It’s worth noting that the reign of the Easdales, and chairman Somers, will end in the event King gains control; they are a busted flush unless they can manoeuver Ashley into an unassailable position.

So will Ashley pack his trunk and run away to join another circus?  Don’t bet on it.  Between now and the morning of the EGM, instead of loaning an already highly-levereged club, he could buy and leaseback its properties.  This would give him enough leverage to look after his medium-term commercial interests, and exercise complete control in the long-term.

None of this even needs to happen under the current board.  He can loan the club the £10m as expected, with covenants which are, to say the least, difficult to achieve.  The cost of failure to meet one of these covenants would allow the Ashley to call-in his securities (the stadium).

Ashley can afford to lose all the cash he’s invested already, and all the his newco-related commercial contracts, but he cannot and will not lose his reputation as an uncompromising operator.  Last week I said ‘Never play poker with a billionaire’.  Whether you are a shopping centre owner, a sports goods giant, or an aspiring football club owner.  These idiots should know thier opponent.

Tickets are now on sale for CQN11, our St Patrick’s Day dinner event on Friday 13 March at the Kerrydale Suite, Celtic Park. We’re hoping to raise money for Mary’s Meals to build a kitchen at Chibwata Primary School for their 909 pupils. As well as the dinner there will be singers and dancing, it’ll be a great night.

Email me if you want tickets reserved, celticquicknews@gmail.com , or you can book tickets or tables directly at the bottom of this page.

Click Here for Comments >

About Author

  1. Pages:
  2. 1
  3. ...
  4. 6
  5. 7
  6. 8
  7. 9
  8. 10
  9. 11
  10. 12
  11. ...
  12. 22

  1. Alfie Noakes


    17:06 on


    18 January, 2015


    Dena, indeed they do –



    sorry for the late reply …..bloody visitors who needs them….only joking



    I agree with your post and for me the crux is ……….is there the appetite in Scotland for


    change, like you and many others I cant see it at the minute ….. but that doesnt mean we adopt the ostrich syndrome and bury our heads in the sand….. this is one reason I back the advert it may not be perfect but it is better than perpetrating the lies further without letting others know the truth about “thems” we cannot compound the lies with silence



    whether or not others perceptions are of “thems” being the same team or not WE know the TRUTH not the perception




    again sorry for late late reply




  2. Sipsini


    i understand that the king of zero hours, mike ashley was attracted to sevco because he heard that they already do no hours.

  3. lennon's passion on




    19:50 on 18 January, 2015



    Don’t let the facts get in the way of a good lie.

  4. gene



    19:05 on 18 January, 2015





    What murray meant to sat was “for every £5 Celtic spend we will spend £10 of taxpayers mone


    Murray and the vermin, will always be a protected entity in this country, as we still await a comment from SFA and Sevco , on Friday nights riot, and serious assault of a Hearts fan outside Poundland.HH

  5. lennon’s passion



    19:52 on 18 January, 2015



    He did play as lone striker though. But don’t let facts get in the way of a pop at the manager.

  6. lennon's passion on




    19:54 on 18 January, 2015



    He played a free role behind James Collins who scored 6 in the 36 appearance. Yeah pesky facts.

  7. lennon’s passion



    20:00 on 18 January, 2015



    James Collins played with Hibs last season. Leigh Griffiths didn’t, he played with Wolves and us. Griffiths played for Hibs in 11/12 (11 goals in 36 games) and 12/13 (28 goals in 42 games).


    Facts eh!

  8. Have just been catching up was off site for a while so sorry to hear of kickinthenakas sad loss



    thoughts and prayers for the family tonight,




  9. jude2005 is Neil Lennon \o/ on





    Wee extra prayer tonight for you and ur family at this sad time. God bless YNWA. Ps Wee Oscar will be lookin after her.

  10. Gene,



    Thems deserve Ashley, he will do to them what they did to Scottish football.



    I remember when a player had a couple of good games against them, he would be bought and most likely rot in the reserves.



    We are paying for that megalomaniacs dreams now through our taxes, it’s time that sirwas ripped from his possession and showed up to be what he was.



    Not that the sir means feckall to me personally, I just want to see his hoardes realise what he was up to. HH

  11. Jamesgang,



    I once witnessed a pub argument about the most capped fifer.



    Pub a-hole claimed it was one player. A couple of other guys claimed another.



    Someone gets their fone out and checks.



    Turns out pub a-hole is wrong and goes on 30 minute rant about how the Internet is spoiling good pub arguments!!! :-o

  12. According to Asda they are still the same club as they still have “rangers celebration cakes” on their shelves……..bought one for the guy next door as he cleared the snow from my path……don’t go by the date on the box says aye….old box but the cakes fresh…..hunday mail says Wotherspoons not showing the game on the 1st chance trouble might be brewing……that’s someday else joining the paranoid list.

  13. kickinthenakas



    Thoughts and prayers for you and your family. May your mother rest in peace.



    HH Dan

  14. Gerryfaethebrig on

    7pm on a Sunday my daughter gets control of the remote, usually to put music on before she goes to her kip, she puts on 1 direction – one thing ?? me from the kitchen shouts get that mince off, she responds “Dad it’s for charity, you always say CQN is about charity so 1 Direction is the same as CQN’ …. Is this a first one direction = Celtic quick news !

  15. thezombieslayer on

    Alfie i dont have to prove anything i have first hand experience of how wonderfull This wee country and its people can and i see it everyday day in day out if all you see is hate and bitterness maybe you should stop staring in the mirror so much ……anyhoos back to my computers games ….. Hail Hail !

  16. eddieinkirkmichael on

    Taken from Ian Frazers Facebook page.



    Naomi Fowler Indeed, I’ll look forward to reading it. The shennanigans with the Rangers is going to be among the subjects on this month’s Taxcast, the Tax Justice Network’s podcast which I produce. They’re launching a VERY interesting project called the Offshore Game, one of its first reports will be quantifying the damage being done to the English and Scottish football leagues by the use of complex and murky offshore financing…I think I won’t be able to give some of those details yet because it’s yet to be released but there’ll be enough to whet the appetite


    1 hr · Edited · Like · 1


    Ian Fraser Sounds really interesting. I did not explore the EBT tax cases involving Rangers and MIH in the above piece (partly because they seem to have already been covered to death elsewhere) but will look forward to listening about the Offshore Game.


    3 hrs · Like · 1


    Naomi Fowler Yes, I won’t be going into the detail either, just using it as an example really on why offshore financing isn’t in the interests of the fans, yet the last ten years it’s been v much on the increase, out on 23rd. Some very interesting stats on the way on some big clubs, I probably won’t be able to talk about them ahead of the full launch but should have enough to whet the appetite


    1 hr · Edited · Like

  17. lennon's passion on




    20:04 on 18 January, 2015



    My mistake it was Eion Doyle he played behind. Still didn’t play lone striker role.


    My point is RD system is getting the best out of his strikers.

  18. garygillespieshamstring on




    According to celtic web site the thistle game is a Wednesday night. However it wouldn’t be the first time I was wrong.

  19. ExSlaemuirBhoy on

    Evening Hoops,



    just logged on and not read back all day, busy day working.


    Caught a glimpse of a report in the Mail on Sunday describing the huns as and I quote as “Re Booting in the 3rd division o Scottish fitba” are the media starting to break ranks ?


    Or did I read it all wrong

  20. geordie munro



    I’m saved from that cos ‘I know nothing’ so I just sit there guzzling beer and listening!!!






    HH jamesgang

  21. GM



    Sorry about that. It’s the old cynical me that thinks the sphell has it in for us. Cheers for that buddy. KTF. :-))



    Weefra HH praying to Wee Oscar.

  22. lennon’s passion



    20:18 on 18 January, 2015






    20:04 on 18 January, 2015



    My mistake it was Eion Doyle he played behind. Still didn’t play lone striker role.


    My point is RD system is getting the best out of his strikers.



    Not wanting to interrupt, but is he? Stats from strikers poor mate HH

  23. exslaemuirbhoy



    The have booted in every division in which they have played – hope they don’t get in our league -ever

  24. Garyg,



    It’s a Wednesday on the site I was checking now too.



    Musta just changed. There’s no way I was mistaken.



    Onthechablis csc :)

  25. Gerryfaethebrig on




    20:18 on 18 January, 2015



    Bottle opener wouldn’t work with BT vision, the remote control works the telly but cheers for the heads-up

  26. lennon’s passion



    20:18 on 18 January, 2015



    I realised you meant Eoin Doyle, I was just being facetious. My recollection was Pat Fenlon stuck Doyle wide left and that’s why he hardly scored any goals.


    As for RD.s system, it’s the three attacking midfielders in the 4-2-3-1 that I think is the problem, not whether you have one or two strikers. If you don’t create chances it doesn’t matter how many strikers you have on the pitch.

  27. Kikinthenakas



    Heartfelt Sympathy for both you and entire Family




    May perpetual Light Shine upon your Mum



    I usually do Mass in Sacred Heart Cowie, but for past 2 weeks have been to the later mass in Our Lady and St Ninians in Bannockburn


    Anyway, I alway light a few candles with 1 always dedicated to those in need for CQN


    So I will dedicate 1 to your Mum, with another for those of CQN, including Frantic07, Zico Maltese Falcon’s niece and TET ‘s wife at this time



    Struggled to get my prayers in today mind, irregular contributor but regular lurker BhoyfromSky, ( another Cowiebhoy) 2 of his grandchildren and Whife ( another Cowieghirl) got to the candles first, brilliant as the kids had a lovely wee prayer time, :-) P & A, they kids are being well taught :-)



    Hail Hail

  28. Celticrollercoaster supporting Shay,our bhoy wonder along the way on

    lennon’s passion





    20:18 on



    18 January, 2015



    “My point is RD system is getting the best out of his strikers”



    Really? How many strikers scored yesterday?







  29. ExSlaemuirBhoy on




    I know bud, but I think the media are actually starting to wise up re the lies of the past 3 year. I have noticed the odd wee dig in the ribs lately regards that mob.

  1. Pages:
  2. 1
  3. ...
  4. 6
  5. 7
  6. 8
  7. 9
  8. 10
  9. 11
  10. 12
  11. ...
  12. 22