Unacceptable attempt to damage Celtic by contagion


This morning the Daily Record led with a front page headline “Celtic and the tax dodge firm”. They went on, “Celtic supremo Peter Lawwell and other club figures have been linked to a £434million tax dodge”, linking Martin O’Neill, Neil Lennon and a number of players from the O’Neill era.

Let’s be clear on the facts of this case:

Celtic employees (they did speak to each other) took advice from one of the big four accountancy firms and made arrangements accordingly.

Each of these employees declared these arrangements to HMRC.

HMRC informed them that these ‘investments’ were not offset-able against tax.

All Celtic and former Celtic staff settled this issue with HMRC years ago.

This was reported in 2012 (a cursory internet search will confirm). Nothing new has happened to any Celtic or former Celtic employee since. No Celtic or former Celtic employee is involved in any on-going related issues.

Celtic pay employees through income declared to HMRC. Tax was and is deducted at source and paid to HMRC – including the matter referred to today. They even asked HMRC if tax was due on Juninho’s EBT and paid by return when told it was.

There are no hidden tax schemes at Celtic. There are no side-letter arrangements at Celtic nor has there ever been. There are no disputes with HMRC.

The newspaper headline is misleading; “Celtic and the fax dodge firm”. There is not once piece of correspondence between Celtic and HMRC or any other body on this matter. Celtic deducted and paid tax to HMRC which their employees subsequently applied for relief against. HMRC have not demanded any connected payment from Celtic, nor is any due.

They can pick on Peter Lawwell, Martin O’Neill and Neil Lennon if that is their motivation (their hostility to each of them has been clear for years), but headlines putting the words “Celtic” and “tax dodge” are designed to damage your club. This is unacceptable.

The bigger question is “Why?”

It’s a tax issue reported years ago which nothing will subsequently happen about because nothing is in dispute by any of the parties concerned. So why make it a front page story now?

That remains a mystery for the time being, but know how ‘news’ works in Scotland, and more importantly, know who instructs what makes the news. This has all the hallmarks of a deflection piece before something bigger hits the fan. Someone is panicking.

The issue remains what do Celtic do about this kind of media distortion. Some newspapers are under so much financial pressure they live for tomorrow’s headline, accountability is a luxury they cannot afford to think about. They do not appear concerned at biting the hand that feeds them.

One (good) news journalist I know told me the football guys keep his ‘paper afloat, as no one would buy to read his (worthy) submissions. Football is the last gig in town for the old media. As a consequence, your club will be savaged at any opportune moment, with or without just cause.



Click Here for Comments >

About Author


  1. traditionalist88 on

    jinkyredstar on 12th October 2016 12:35 pm



    Ban the Rag






    You wonder what it’ll take…




  2. BMCUW




     Yeah, when it suits them, as you know.




     Not so keen on the continuity when it comes to the 276 creditors.




  3. I don’t buy the rag and anyway I know the truth.



    The huns are deed and the daily record is dying.







  4. Rowley Birkin QC on

    Spent years telling my late father in law not to buy this rag!



    Hopefully, its and sevcos days are numbered.




  5. That story will give BFSTUPIDDJ his topic for tonight!






    I love their pain!

  6. You should see the vermin on my Facebook page because of that story in the chip wrapper today .



    God man they are overly excited . But I will say it again , Time celtic took a stand .




    I’ve upset you? And I’m also afraid that under the new rules of getting personal with people by calling them clowns is a no no, so by all rights you should be getting a warning, I’ll wait and see how this one goes, rules are rules, you can’t be calling people clowns, it’s not nice, and the post was to Paul, best you should have ignored it,.



    Hopefully your behaviour doesent continue in this verbal assault on fellow posters, I find it shocking, and hopefully the brown shirts have a word with you, and I’ll leave it at that, upset as I am hopefully they take a softly softly approach with you on your first offence under the new rules.



    But you have previous with me on many occasions, so the may take that into consideration, keyboard bullying is not a nice thing, even more so when it’s a pensioner your doing it to, ashamed of yourself you should be.

  8. Personally looking forward to Friday night as there are 2 great comedy acts on the telly, Still Game and sevco. I just don’t know which one is the funniest. Having said that the Still Game team have been in existence much longer than sevco and if the truth were to be told will probably see the new whippersnappers out the door.

  9. A smear story launched by the Daily Record I wonder if anyone from Level 5 has influence at that rag, you can be sure tax is back on the agenda when this appears as it tries to paint Celtic as being up to no good, remember a lot of people still buy this toilet paper and will believe to a large or lesser extent what has been printed, job done ,even if at a later time there is a retraction. Celtic must act now against The Daily Record

  10. Philbhoy



    No doubt ‘the Panel’ will suddenly feel qualified to talk about taxation and other issues of personal finance which they used to claim were not in their remit.



    Not that I’ll be listening.




    You come on here and insult you host, yet continue to post.



    You are indeed a keyboard clown.



    If you had any honour you would not post again.




    It would be hilarious if Chris Sutton was involved in the deals and phones in.



    I might just listen tonight!

  13. Tony Donnelly @ 12:47


    I can see why Philbhoy might not see the humour in your post but I found it amusing 0:-))




  14. Ban the Record now Celtic, no if’s no but’s ban them now for their anti celtic agenda.


    What must our sponsors think when they see that headline? Unless we do/say something about it we’ll be deemed to be complicit in their lies and smears.

  15. One thing that still amazes or disappoints me, is that when you get on the supporters bus at Larne, some Celtic supporters still buy the DR. Lets all agree to ban it.

  16. Philbhoy



    Honestly mate. He has his knickers in a fankle about Paul67 having a Mod or two. He obviously has something to fear. He’ll get over it. Let his cell wallow as it strikes the cranium on the odd occasion it floats far enough, no point in getting involved.



    And remember. And if you get a yellow for calling him a clown then can I get one for thinking it? :-)



    MWD Brown Shirt Captain :@-)

  17. An Teach Solais on



    Thanks for that link. I think that JohnJames nails the reason behind its publication and failure to include the schemes adopted by the Waistcoat, Wee Barry and the other bluenoses whom he names.


    Statement O’Clock, as Phil calls it, likely to follow. HH





    You should be ashamed of yourself,calling a wee harmless OAP a clown.



    Don’t you know how hurtful that is to clowns everywhere? They’re already seeing their profession wrecked by the recent outbreak of copycat scarum displays.



    Anyway,as an aside,aren’t you officially of pensionable age but choosing to work?



    Just thought I’d mention it,auld yin!



    (Btw,my nephew calls me that. Swine)

  19. PHILBHOY on 12TH OCTOBER 2016 12:54 PM






    You come on here and insult you host, yet continue to post.




    You are indeed a keyboard clown.




    If you had any honour you would not post again.



    Heavens to Betsy I do declare he’s off on one again, oh! I need to go toilet, he’s a bad man, disrupting this blog, and attacking old pensioners, some times you wonder if it’s worthwhile taking the abuse on her.



    I’m an old man and live on my own I love CFC and come in here for companionship, and I get called a clown, and being told in my senior years that I have no honour,! Is a thing I thought I’d never hear at this stage in my life, some days it’s not good being a Celtic supporter as others make it difficult, and have no concern for the elderly, it’s very sad.

  20. Hot-smoked



    I don’t know who you’re calling a ‘pudding’, but please comply with the acceptable use policy as people are desserting the blog in droves!

  21. Paul67



    The question re DR article has to be why now and why tax as weapon of contagion?



    Clearly a deflection attempt and I see Barcabhoy on Twitter say it will all become clear next week.



    Has the ebt appeal been abandoned or are they skint?



    Time will tell.

  22. BMCUWP



    Yes, I choose to work beyond normal retirement age for two reasons.



    I have a 16 yo daughter with ambitions to go to university.



    Plus, I am making millions.



    Well, mibbe no!