Some play to pay bills, others for history


Amid the unseasonal, end of season, revelry at Celtic Park tonight there is a serious business to take care off on the park.  Dunfermline were two goals down and out of the game the last time they visited but a pot-shot from outside the box unsettled Celtic and gave the game a tense conclusion.

They are a team with everything to fight for; these guys are battling for their standard of living tonight.  Joint bottom of the league, they could all be out of a job within months, with consequences for mortgage repayments, the food they eat and the pay-TV they watch.  Appetite for a point will be enormous.

Neil Lennon will have to use different motivational techniques to stir his men, who will have no financial worries but must surely be desperate to establish their professional status as title winners.  Scott Brown suggest this was the best Celtic team he had played in, which is a big claim considering an earlier incarnation twice led Barcelona in the knock out stages of the Champions League.  His team mates can provide further evidence to back up that status tonight.

In a gesture which tests the boundaries of the word magnificent, the Celtic fan who paid £5000 towards the Vanessa Riddle Appeal for the signed Celtic jersey we auctioned last week asked us to put it back up for auction again.

Auctions are a magnificent way to help get Vanessa the lifesaving treatment she needs but the cost of participating at the business end soon gets out of the reach of many fans. With this in mind, we have started an eBay raffle; you can win the jersey for the cost of a £1, or the entire purchase price of Rangers FC PLC.

There are no excuses to sit this one out, Vanessa needs your help, you would like to own a signed Celtic jersey, and you too can afford the kind of money Craig Whyte used to buy Rangers. Click here to participate.

Thank you for the dozens of response to the request for writers for CQN Magazine. I’m still working through them, will be in touch soon. Issue six, our Fit and Proper edition, is set to become a landmark collectors item. You can browse the magazine online here but you can buy your own hard copy by clicking on the link below.  Fill your boots…..

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You can support the online edition by making a discretionary donation here.

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  1. medtim says:


    22 February, 2012 at 09:48


    More details have also emerged of Whyte’s failure to resolve the “small tax bill” dispute with HMRC.



    Through David Grier, one of Duff and Phelps’ partners, Whyte was given a couple of repayment options on the bill, which he agreed to take on when he bought the club.



    Grier and the taxman were anxious to find a way of preventing Rangers from toppling, but Whyte didn’t act 
on either offer.



    He was asked to pay £500,000 of the bill upfront and the rest over almost a year, but he wanted to hand over only £250,000 as a down payment.



    Grier managed to persuade HMRC to agree to this new arrangement but again Whyte didn’t come up with the cash.



    The “small tax bill” is now standing at just more than £4million and was also a factor in forcing last week’s 
insolvency event.



    Question for auldheid (and others) on here who probed the awarding of a Euro licence to rangers for THIS season.


    If I remember correctly,the thrust of the argument was thus.


    A team should not be granted a Euro licence if they have an outstanding,unpaid,overdue bill to a tax authority.


    There is however a “get out” clause if a club in such a position comes to an agreement with the tax authority to pay the bill.


    Apparently,rangers had such an arrangement for the “wee” tax bill.


    However,Article 66(?) of the Euro rules addresses what should happen if a club defaults/reneges on the agreement ie no licence or licence withdrawn.


    They later,much much later lodged an appeal against the whole bill (having previously only contested the penalty element)


    This was done AFTER they had commenced playing in Europe


    The extract from the DR article above appears to confirm that Whyte reneged on that agreement (also contrary to the sale deal with murray)


    Does this now confirm that rangers were awarded a Euro licence through deception?


    Is this subject part of the terms of reference for the sfa inquiry?



    Question for Paul67.


    Paul,I don’t know if you agree with my interpretation of this matter and,if so,you think it worthy of inclusion in any future article or communication with your contacts?


    In the midst of so many amazing events in these tumultuous times,it would be easy to forget or ignore this issue,but I continue to hold very strong views on this and suggest it could/should be used if/when the game starts to get even dirtier (as it no doubt will)



    Best Regards






    c and p from last article

  2. BT



    Regarding the Groupon deal – a bit early for Hamilton races to be on, take it it’s for one of their many summer meetings?



    (PS; I usually keep track of the meetings, because I need to revise by journey home to the Peoples Republic of Blantyre when it’s on…)










    Read the article then realsed there had been no comments!



    Well worth t though,PAUL67

  4. Murdoch … @ 8.06



    You have to hand it to the right wing mentalists / dog boilers / economic orthodoxy groupies who now run things politically and economically at the moment – they really know how to put on a show.



    Dog Boiling – cutting the dole was a given.


    Neo Slavery – workfare, now that takes some doing.



    The bankers blow up the global economy through greed, casino economics and Coin clipping and the right spin a narrative that it was all the fault of the Greek minimum wage and UK disability benefits.



    All it proves is that when times are tough / push comes to shove the upper middle class, privately educated establishment will blame everyone but themselves for the problems they now find themselves in. Things are now worse than they were in the 1930′s atnleast then an alternative narrative was available and a solution was found.



    Now we are just into slash and burn / sado-masochism wrapped up as policy.


    It is the politics of the charnel house with the poor / sick / unemployed first up for sacrifice to the Gods of Austrian economic mentalists.



    At times you think DI was right all along.


    Some superior being / lizard race is just playing with mankind.


    We are behaving like rats in a lab – enough pressure and we will eat our own young.





  5. St Martin De Porres on




    I know we are only a week into the crisis but is it fair to say that this administartion is not following the previous trend with regards playing staff. I think i recall that lay offs with high wage players and especially inflated coaching staff were swift.



    I dont think 1st team managers have ever survived this process. I suspect the 1st team coaches at rangers are on 5 figure salaries and are far economical option than poor ally



  6. A straw in the wind: Underneath today’s Herald article on Whyte using the Ticketus money to pay off Llloyds there is a comment that includes the following phrase – “a completely selfish,self centered,liar.”


    The editorial and legal opinion at one of Scotland’s more conservative media outlets must be that this is a safe, defensible, true statement.

  7. Kevinlasvegas, yes, important article coming up at lunch time…..



    medtim, you raise a few important points. Totally agree, with so much going on, it’s easy to miss important issues, one coming up at lunch time.



    Your interpretation of events is entirely consistent with my understanding.



    BOBBY MURDOCH’S. cheers.



    St Martin De Porres, yes, absolutely exceptional that there have been no redundancies among highly earning players or coaches. Bizarre.



    Gordon_J, stunning stuff.

  8. The score tonight will be decided by whatever score the Celtic players decide to go for. Yep, we are that good now we can decide on which score to choose:-))



    I personally think it’ll be a 3-0. 2 goals in the first half, one before the 15 min mark, just to settle the nerves, and one after 35 mins to ensure they don’t get a blasting from Neil at ht.



    3rd goal on the hour – subs all come on, and we cruise home.



    Now, I do hope Dunfermline don’t do anything silly like scoring first, cos you don’t want to annoy this Celtic team. If they score first, I’m thinking 7-1 will be served up to them :-) So, a wee note to DAFC, do the sensible thing and take yer 3-0. You know it makes sense.



  9. Paul67


    -> Hi Paul – can you change the setup on the ebay auction please, to allow worldwide shipping? As it stands, non-UK bidders can’t even bid, as the item will not ship overseas. I have already chipped in to the charity appeal, but would also buy a raffle ticket, and am sure there are plenty of other overseas Bhoys who would do the same.




  10. Hi Paul,



    “Neil Lennon will have to use different motivational techniques to stir his men…..”



    How’s about this then; statement on closing the North Stand by DAFC;



    “The club say their board took “the enormously hard decision…with great regret” but that it will save the club “well over £20,000 per season……..”We sincerely hope that our fans will understand the reasons behind this decision,” said chairman John Yorkston.”



    Yet Mr Yorkston seemed little concerned for the £80,000.00 that R@ngers owe his club, statement by DAFC;



    “…………..and the board and club would wish to convey their support to Rangers FC and hope that the club can find a way through this terrible time.”



    Would motivate me!

  11. Awesome Paul, i’ll set my alarm. night shift and monsters going bust is a bad combination. not slept right since last week incase i miss




  12. No matter what else happens when the dust settles from this farce very serious questions have to be asked of the 2 bodies who are empowered with governing our game.



    In recent times we have had insolvency events at 4 major clubs. Now this one, if you believe the press, threatens the entire game. I can’t think of any other league that has had such wanton financial vandalism surrounding it.



    The clubs themselves obviously cannot be trusted to run their companies in a fit and proper manner therefore we need strong governance to do this for them so the clubs that do behave correctly are not punished by the acts of sociopaths and charlatans.



    We need to look at the German model. We need to cap wages against turnover. We need to have rigorous Fit and Proper person rules, and apply them. We need to have unequivocal rules regarding paying your dues to the government. Clubs should be made to sign a warrant giving the national body permission to query the Tax status of a club at any time they want. Accounting standards and practices should be set at the National level to prevent people reverting to archaic practices to inflate asset values.



    All this is basic stuff. All this should already be getting done as a matter of course but we are being failed by the 2 bodies charged with preventing this happening.



    The SPL and the SFA basically need to bloody grow up, grow a pair, and start doing what they should have been doing from the start which is govern the professional game in our country. The politicians and the media would have you believe football is paramount to the economy, that Rangers are the fabric of this. Well for now we will take that at face value. If this is true Mr Salmond stop chasing the unionist vote for saving Tax Dodgers FC and start forcing the 2 bodies charged with governing this game, which you have placed such cultural importance on, to behave like a governing body and not a bowling club in Ayrshire.

  13. giggs


    valid on the following dates..



    Caribbean Night (Friday 11 May)



    Chamber of Commerce Raceday (Thursday 7 June)



    Irish/Euro 2012 Night (Wednesday 13 June)



    Scottish Farmers Market Raceday (Tuesday 3 July)



    Scottish Trophy Day (Thursday 30 August)



    Scottish Owners & Trainers Day (Monday 3 September)



    Final Fling Raceday (Monday 1 October)

  14. jimtim says:


    22 February, 2012 at 09:27


    From last thread.


    I do find the prospect of Rangers supporting MPs interfering worrying, I don’t think they’ll be too worried what damage their actions have on the rest of Scottish football.


    Maybe a few more emails to political leaders are needed.


    I made a point last night that the MPs are UK politicians and perhaps UEFA will see an opportunity to have a wee go at the FA, just a thought.


    Off to read todays article, then get some work done.

  15. On the Celtic team right now –



    There were lots of positives against Hibs (Stokes’ and Mulgrew’s contributions, and the performance of the three subs especially) but we can learn more from the negatives.



    For me, Sunday’s game proved conclusively that Matthews needs a proper partner down the right. He does not play well as a lone fullback in 4-3-3 and Cha, for all his shortcomings, should be considered if Lenny opts to go with this formation.



    Although Celtic started as 4-4-2 on Sunday, Forrest soon switched positions, going advanced LM, or joining in attacks behind the strikers. This left Matthews on his own, and he never tried running with the ball, choosing instead to attempt a risky pass inside which most of the time did not come off.



    Meanwhile, Forrest has been given that ‘roaming’ role three times this season – against Udinese (H), Atletico (H) and on Sunday. It doesn’t suit him as he is unable to retain possession. He is a typical wide midfielder and that’s it imo.

  16. A nation in mourning? Crippled with austerity measures for years to come, genuine concern for jobs and well being, a show of public outcry at the impact on their wider society and culture. Living beyond their means for years and having unaffordable pension schemes as well as an alleged tax avoidance culture. Politations expressing concern for the ‘fabric’ of society and the need to have a financial structural overhaul as well as protecting the interests of ‘the peeple’. No I wasn’t watching the STV coverage of Rangers (in administration) but BBC 24 coverage of Greece. Perhaps our friends in Govan need to look over their shoulder and recognise that mismanagement of financial affairs have devestating impacts not just for areas of social entertainment but for countries and nations as a whole.

  17. deliasmith @ 10:06,



    “a completely selfish,self centered,liar………..The editorial and legal opinion at one of Scotland’s more conservative media outlets must be that this is a safe, defensible, true statement.”



    Believe “Fair Comment” is the phrase they use:-)



    Celtic 5-0 DAFC

  18. Paul


    With regards the Vanessa Appeal, I know the target figure is near enough the £500k mark. Do you happen to know what the current amount raised is by chance. I reckon that if people see it grow then it can give some more impetus when the target is in sight.



    Hail Hail





  19. SFA chief executive Stewart Regan says the Rangers crisis may change rules



    The current financial crisis at Rangers could prompt a change in the Scottish Football Association’s rules, according to SFA chief executive Stewart Regan.


    The SFA has appointed Lord William Nimmo Smith to chair the inquiry into the club’s business activity.


    “When you look back at a situation like this, hindsight is a wonderful thing,” said Regan.



    We are hoping there may be issues arising out of the independent inquiry that we can take and look at building into our own articles of association for the future



    Stewart Regan


    “Certainly, we are hoping there may be issues arising out of the independent inquiry that we can take and look at building into our own articles of association for the future.


    “But, at this stage, it’s about establishing the facts, establishing what’s gone on and deciding how we deal with it.”


    Rangers were forced into administration over an unpaid tax bill of £9million accrued since Craig Whyte completed his takeover of Rangers last May.


    Whyte has since admitted that he sold of three years’ worth of the Ibrox outfit’s season ticket money to complete his takeover and the SFA wants clubs to take more responsibility over who owns and controls football clubs.


    “What every club has to do at the start of the season is bind themselves into the articles of association by filling in an official return,” said Regan.


    Clubs are essentially saying they agree to comply with the articles of association.


    “The powers that the board has under the articles are quite wide-ranging, however there are no detailed specifics relating to the ownership of football clubs.


    “I know that’s one area that has been raised by a number of commentators on this particular issue. That could be one of the areas that we take a look at as we go forward.”


    Dunfermline, Inverness, Dundee United and Hearts are all owed money by Rangers and Regan says some clubs have been in contact with the SFA since the SPL champions called in the administrators last Tuesday.


    “We have received correspondence from a number of individuals, particularly clubs that haven’t been paid,” said Regan.


    “Those matters have been taken into consideration and ourselves and the Scottish Premier League are discussing what can be done to address that matter.


    “There are a number of possible routes. The Scottish Premier League have an ability to off-set against future payments.


    “Equally, the Scottish FA could consider that as a course of action. We are trying to understand the scale of the matter and clearly there is a need to work with the administrators to establish the facts and understand all of the potential creditors.


    “Clearly there are those who have been identified as creditors in the administrator appointment but there are those potential creditors who are coming from within football.


    “Before we embark upon specific actions and decide exactly what will be done, we need to understand the facts and we are in that process at the moment.


    “We’ve met with the administrators and they have agreed to be as totally co-operative as we require and we will be meeting them again this week to understand next steps.”


    Asked how concerned he is by the situation at Rangers, Regan, who helped launch plans to deliver Scotland’s first National Performance Centre for sport, said: “It’s a grave situation, not just for the club, but for Scottish football.


    “It’s hugely sad and an unedifying spectacle for the game when you have one of the biggest clubs in the country actually going into administration – in particular, some of the facts that are emerging sending shockwaves around the world as far as Scottish football is concerned.


    “Undoubtedly football will continue. Football has been around for hundreds of years and will continue to be around.


    “There are lessons that can learned, there will be lessons coming out of this whole episode.


    “It’s important for us to establish the facts before we can actually decide what action can be taken.”

  20. Paul67



    A great gesture from one of our own putting the Celtic Shirt back up for auction.



    Looking forward to ‘The Party’ tonight and wearing my Jelly & Ice cream T-shirt for the first time…




  21. Heard Jabba Traynor on Newsnight last night talking about Whyte having the audacity of ‘gifting’ rangers fans their shares back when it appears they’ve bought them anyway, here’s the punchline, jabba actually said – “which is what some of us have been saying all along”. The man is a corpulent leeching carbuncle on the arse of journalism. HH 

  22. Guys



    Thinking ahead to that time when the Foe Malign may be no more than a footnote to history, I turned my attention to another great Scottish ‘sporting institution’ that might benefit from some closer scrutiny, namely (the licence-payer funded) BBC Shortbread sports department.



    So, I’m testing my understanding of Shortbread’s ‘neutrality’ and thought an interesting place to start would be an examination the list of pundits it uses on its radio broadcasts.



    I’ve started with the following, but – as you will see – there are plenty of gaps.



    Any help in filling these gaps would be appreciated:



    HOST: Richard Gordon



    ‘Resident’ PUNDITS: Traynor, Young, Dodds, Patterson, Craigan, MacLeod, Preston



    Previous ‘residents’: Sandy Clark, Smith



    Recent additions as ‘resident’: English



    Frequent ‘Occasionals’: Irvine, McKimmie, Robertson, Ferguson



    Less frequent ‘occasionals’: Bonnar, McStay



    Refs/Ex refs: Clark, Odious-‘spokesperson’-used-around-time-of-refs’-strike-and-whose-name-escapes-me.



    As I said earier: any help in filling the gaps would be appreciated …




  23. Paul



    Stunning to read the “re-donation” of the jersey. Hats off to the Bhoy or Ghirl involved…MAGNIFICENT.



    Amidst all the events of the past 9 days or so the Celtic Family continues to do what we do best.



    The Thai Tims are coming to Paradise and player of the year candidate (IMO) Joe Ledley can’t wait to meet them. Young Adam praises the fans and The Huddle calling us inspirational. Our Manager joins the Board of Trustees of the wonderful Celtic Charity Fund. All of this announced within 48 hours. All of this and a 17 point lead.



    What a Club! A TRUE institution rather than a true blue disgrace

  24. The Battered Bunnet on




    Celtic fans do my head in some times.



    Remarkable generosity.



    Bunnet doffed.

  25. Hi



    Just a quick mention for an article I have written on the RFC debacle for Left Foot Forward (UK no1. left-wing blog…apparently).



    I touch on Whyte, Murray and the politics of it, though you are probably all familiar with it as its for a wider audience



    Rangers FC: How a market leader went bust

  26. 'crushed nuts?' 'Naw, Layringitis!' on

    Scaramanga says:



    22 February, 2012 at 09:22



    Folks, I’m getting free hospitality tonight at the game. Still waiting on exact details but may include sit-down dinner. Any advice on dress code appreciated as won’t get all info until late afternoon.




    It really depends on your shape. If you are Jabbaesque then I would suggest a black polo neck with white trousers, brown suede shoes and a black leather bomber jacket.


    If you’re more of a chico sort then drainpipe stone-washed denim tucked into brown knee-length cowboy boots, an XL lumberjack shirt and a tan leather blouson to top off (Bowie hat optional)


    If you’re more inclined to the build of a Spiers, a pair of slip-on black shoes, mustard crimplene Farah slacks (with the ‘expandable waist’), a v-neck Pringle sweater with the diamond pattern and a burgundy shirt with yellow cravat.











    Rangers in crisis: Our man Keith Jackson tells how he uncovered the truth about Craig Whyte


    Feb 22 2012 By Keith Jackson


    TUESDAY June 14, 2011 – the day I knew the man in charge of Rangers was lying through his teeth and covering up a secret plan to put a 140-year-old institution at risk of ruin.


    That was the day the Record reported for the first time that Whyte had made his big move to sell off four years’ worth of season ticket sales.


    The response from this odd little man was instant and emphatic. I was banned from Ibrox forthwith, my story dismissed as a pack of lies.


    During a heated telephone conversation with Whyte the following day, he even told me my story – which was based upon a document he’d registered at Companies House – was littered with inaccuracies.


    In fact, he said, what he had done by submitting that paperwork was protecting those tickets, not mortgaging them off. How very silly of me.


    Our story had stated: “Record Sport has been alerted to a Companies House document in the names of Whyte and his newly appointed right-hand man in the boardroom, Phil Betts. This has raised concerns among prominent supporters at Ibrox.


    “Analysts say the document could signal Whyte’s intent to mortgage off the next four years’ worth of season ticket money as a security against some form of loan.”


    We added: “Rangers season-ticket holders will want to know where their hard-earned cash is going and if Whyte plans to use it to finance his initial takeover, which saw him agree to wipe out an £18million debt with Lloyds Bank.”


    After my ban, Whyte went further. He invited his pet paper The Scottish Sun and The Herald along for interviews.


    In the Herald, he said: “Contrary to a report elsewhere this week, no form has been signed that would allow season-ticket money to be used as a guarantee against any future loans.”


    Also handed a sit-down was Tom English from Scotland on Sunday, who said Whyte was “incensed” with the Record.


    It added: “After a bout of apoplexy, he got to thinking where this story might have come from. ‘I don’t know, but I hear that some of the previous directors are still sniping away in the background, still trying to cause trouble where they can. I think it’s a pity that some of these guys didn’t go gracefully instead of going disgracefully.’”


    This morning, Whyte may be wise to consider taking his own advice. But he won’t. The breakdown in his relationship with the truth has gone too far.


    Fast forward eight months or so, James Traynor and I are finally given the go-ahead by the Record legal experts to print the same story all over again after learning that HMRC had launched a full scale probe into £5million in missing VAT money from the season ticket deal.


    You know, that one that Whyte didn’t do.


    This time, we have all the figures and dates. We even know that the £24.4million was handed over to his lawyers, Collyer Bristow, before the takeover had been completed. In other words, he’d sold season tickets which weren’t even his to sell.


    Whyte is finally forced to tell the truth… well, almost. This time he admits tranches of tickets were sold off, while strenuously denying that he used any of the proceeds to pay off the club’s £18million debt to Lloyds Bank.


    On the club’s website on January 31, he lied: “In the most lurid terms, the Record accuses the club’s management, and specifically me, of using supporters’ money to help fund the buyout of Rangers. Not true.


    “The Daily Record’s approach to this story sought to distort and dramatise the matter. I for one will not be reading or buying the Daily Record again and I’m sure many other Rangers fans will share my disgust at yet another smear on this club.”


    Rangers fans might have been a little more disgusted two weeks later when Whyte finally plunged their club into the carnage of administration.


    Yesterday, however, Whyte was left with no more room to manoeuvre and no more lies to tell. He had been rumbled.


    But let’s hope, at least, he sticks to his promise never to buy a Daily Record again.


    Mr Whyte, your sort are simply not welcome. In fact, let’s just say you can officially consider yourself BANNED.

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