The tens of millions Rangers denied SPL clubs laid bare


The SPL deadline for clubs to provide information on improper registration of players was six weeks ago today but the league has yet to report findings to clubs, while the chief executive rallies support to allow a Newco access to the league.

Time has expired on this policy of non-disclosure until it’s too late.

If the SPL chief executive ever tells us that Rangers fielded improperly registered players between 2000 and 2012, resulting in years of 3-0 defeats being awarded, there will be an enormous amount of anger, not only among supporters, but in boardrooms across the country, as they ponder money which was rightfully theirs but which went to Rangers – perhaps including Rangers prize money for finishing second this season.

We have made an attempt to quantify this money.  Some of the losses were easier to calculate than others.  For example, it was easy to calculate that when Rangers won the title in 2009 with improperly registered players, earning automatic qualification to the Champions League group stage, they denied Celtic £15m European earnings, plus £340k SPL prize money.  Other losses are less clear, specifically when a club was denied a place in a qualifying round for the Champions League or Uefa Cup, which they may or may not have progressed from.

We have established three figures for each club in the SPL during the season just finished, to cover the period from 2000 to 2012:

Minimum loss:
The absolute minimum each club was denied from European and SPL prize money as a result of Rangers finishing above them with ineligible players.

Weighted loss:
The figure based on Scottish clubs gaining entry to Champions League/Europa League (Uefa Cup) group stages from 20% of their qualifying campaigns (which is slightly less than trend).

Maximum loss:
The maximum a club could have achieved if it qualified for the European group stage it was denied entry to.

Out estimates take no account of the subsequent effect money has on future years.  For example, If Celtic earned an additional £15m from entering the Champions League group stage in 2009-10 their league challenge for that season would have been £15m stronger, and Rangers £15m weaker, potentially resulting in consequences in future years.

This multiplier effect would have benefited Celtic but it would be likely to have a greater effect on other clubs, some of whom would be denied the enormous percentage increase in budget automatic qualification to European group stages would have brought.

Hearts finished immediately behind Celtic and Rangers more often than any other club over the period and suffer the greatest potential losses, even more so than Celtic.  Hibernian, Aberdeen, Dundee United and Motherwell also suffered significant losses.

Several clubs got nowhere near European football over the period, and some of the 11 spent only a few years in the SPL but each club lost over £1m.

Figures for each club are:

Maximum: £72.3m
Weighted: £16.3m
Minimum: £6.2m

Maximum: £46.7m
Weighted: £21.9m
Minimum: £17.4m

Maximum: £34.8m
Weighted: £8.4m
Minimum: £3.6m

Maximum: £21.1m
Weighted: £5.5m
Minimum: £2.7m

Dundee United
Maximum: £20.8m
Weighted: £5.2m
Minimum: £2.4m

Maximum: £16.7m
Weighted: £4.4m
Minimum: £2.1m

Maximum: £5.1m
Weighted: £1.9m
Minimum: £1.3m

Maximum: £3.4m
Weighted: £1.8m
Minimum: £1.5m

Maximum: £1.3m
Weighted: £1.3m
Minimum: £1.3m

St Johnstone
Maximum: £1.1m
Weighted: £1.1m
Minimum: £1.1m

St Mirren
Maximum: £1.1m
Weighted: £1.1m
Minimum: £1.1m

In the event Rangers fielded ineligible players during the period under consideration, which everyone apart from Neil Doncaster knows, and even he will be unable to deny next week, we know the following:

Rangers received a minimum of £40.9m which should have gone to the 11 other clubs, assuming each club lost all their European group stage qualifying campaigns.  This calculation does not include earnings from clubs now in the Scottish Football League, such as Hamilton Accies or Dundee.

If Scottish clubs progressed to the group stages of European competition on only 20% of their qualifying campaigns the loss would be £69.0m.

The figure for total potential losses if clubs successfully progressed to every European group stage is, as the figure for 100% failure, more illustrative than likely, but the maximum cost to the 11 SPL clubs is £224.6m.

Results will be changed, trophies can and will, be re-awarded, but these are the harsh financial consequences clubs, their lawyers and supporters, will consider when the facts are presented to them next week. The SPL executive has had six weeks to consider if there is sufficient evidence to commence disciplinary proceedings; they have failed to do so. They have failed you and every other football supporter in the land, while shamelessly pursuing an accommodation for the errant club BEFORE REVEALING THE FACTS TO YOU.

Time will be up soon, Mr Doncaster. You’ve had your chance but you have convinced no one. The people who really matter in this entire debacle are those who buy tickets for Celtic Park, Pittodrie, Easter Road, Tynecastle, Tannadice, Fir Park and the rest, they will hear the truth and read these figures. You have failed them.

You can read our calculations here. European income figures were sources from Uefa data.

Celtic’s disadvantage deepened when their winger John Doyle was sent off ten minutes into the second half for kicking the scorer, but there was an equaliser from Aitken, who was especially suited to a night of such fervour and force. Never bashful, Aitken was stimulated by the challenge of being in an outnumbered line-up.

From Celtic: A Biography in Nine Lives, by Kevin McCarra.

You can buy a hard copy of the new issue of CQN Magazine via Magcloud here.

The graphic below is just for a flick through, to read the magazine go here to it’s dedicated site.

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  1. Bolton release list of players leaving



    Gretar Steinsson, Paul Robinson, Sean Davis, Robbie Blake, Ricardo Gardner, Ivan Klasnic, Mark Connolly, Tope Obadeyi, Rhys Bennett, Dino Fazlic, Tom Eckersley and Nigel Reo-Coker.



    Robinson is still a great keeper and Klasnic is the type of striker we are supposedly looking for. Would take either of them.

  2. Bada bing ,that was your fault.




    Remember in the airport on return from a holiday in Espana.


    Sitting next to a young lady from Northern England .


    She grabs her oxter ,and kindly informed me that she


    was ‘ SWETTIN LIKE PIG’ ,I thought how attractive:O(

  3. Snake Plissken on

    So is the result in and the findings are coming next week?



    Is this why Doncaster has opened his gob today?

  4. Steinreignedsupreme on

    Paul67 –



    “everyone apart from Neil Doncaster knows, and even he will be unable to deny next week”



    Is this the Mark Daly documentary? If so, is it as explosive as rumours have suggested?

  5. philvisreturns on

    henryclarkson – All the record books will say is that philvis won again. (thumbsup)

  6. Those are quite breathtaking figures Paul67 I an sure our media will make good use of them and push for a quick outcome and the delivery of full and proper punishment for the offenders…….

  7. sixtaeseven: No NewClub in SPL and it's Non-Negotiable! on

    Great article Paul!



    I can hardly believe they are picking up prize money for their “tainted” second place this season!



    Do your figures take into account missed revenues for the Scottish and League Cups?





    Tainted Titles
















    Corrupt Scottish Cups














    Defiled League Cups
















    (SPL years only, list is obviously longer…)

  8. jungle jam67 on

    Still waiting on the msm to ask how many clubs are under investigation for


    Second payments to players?



    Neil Doncaster is too busy trying to accommodate newco to worry about rules being broken .


    Nothing to see here timmy …..move along



    Whocaresaslongasthebearsareinthespl nd

  9. RalphWaldoEllison-is Neil Lennon Season 2011-12 on

    Are you watching and listening Mr Doncaster?



    We’re watching you and listening to your inane drivel that passes for leadership.



    Trouble with adminstrators masquerading as men of integrity is that they get found out in the smallest crisis.



    Any discretion, no matter how constrained, is liable to abuse.

  10. philvisreturns, cheers.



    Snake Plissken, I don’t expect the SPL to reveal the results until after a vote on Newco is passed. This doesn’t mean the info will not be released elsewhere.



    The Idiot, aye, sure.



    voguepunter, yes, I am sure Mr Romanov would be interested in this.



    sixtaeseven, cheers.



    Folly Folly, cheers.

  11. CultsBhoy loves being 1st forever & ever on

    Startling figures…even if only 50% accurate..(I’m not castigating any calculations – just making a point)



    Will be interesting to see how the media play these kind of numbers..



    Really the SHAME is now growing out of all proportion.



    It may well be the case that the full extent of the consequence was unintended but the core idea of cheating was I suspect a gamble that has spectacularly not paid off..

  12. RalphWaldoEllison-is Neil Lennon Season


    am sweatin like someone awaitin his “Don’t Shrink” green wristbands – no sign of them yet, but no fear, they’ll be here soon enuff i suppose – hope Florida is nice this time o year for you et al


    – and a further twist in el espanol scenario…i see that ye old Rep of Ireland play v Espana on thurs 14th – so this house here in UAE wil be one guy wearin the hoops against 6 guys wearing the red of the world champions – thinkin of givin that one a body-swerve – but will wait and see – got a possible party to attend back in sunny ecosse at that time – however, should i have to face the fury, then i’ll be bankin on Aiden runnin amock v that big diddy, Sergio Ramos, or the like !



    as for the car info…


    so many questions lads


    THANKS for the initial responses


    very very informative


    much appreciated !

  13. tomthelennytim on

    Paul67 – has anyone taken into account potantial losses for shareholders?


    I know that minority shareholders are unlikely to have received a dividend but there is surely potential for a class action against Rangers’ directors and anyone at the SPL/SFA who are found to have known about the fraud.

  14. excellent work as always Paul67!



    Must say I’m eagerly anticipating next week’s BBC documentary, are Rangers corrupt practices finally going to be laid bare for everyone to see and in a way that makes it impossible to deny?

  15. Great stuff Paul


    There was some talk/rumour a few weeks back of the SPL “advancing” rangersIA their second place league monies, IF and I appreciate there are a lot of ifs and buts going around, IF the footballing authorities knew of the EBT investigation outcomes relating to the fielding of ineligible players then they also knew of the consequences re points deductions and 3-0 amended results, surely not?

  16. CultsBhoy loves being 1st forever & ever on

    has Doncaster been sent these figures – which are speculative – if so I’d love to hear his counter argument to justify his Hun love-in…other than impact on his personal income via bonuses..in fact scratch that I’d be sattisfied with that as an explanation – as it would tally with my understanding/assessment of matters..



    Cheerio Neil Doncaster you’re time is up – go back to William Hill – you too have taken your last gamble with the SPL!

  17. philvisreturns on

    If this was about an English football club, say Man United for example, it would be all over the papers, the TV and radio news bulletins, and questions would be asked in Parliament.



    What are the Scottish establishment doing? (thumbsup)

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