Warning from Blue Knights comes home to roost


o Newco Rangers have £1.2m in the bank and the courts have just arrested £620k, leaving circa £600k available.  In early September.  Football clubs have their cash high water mark in June, after season ticket money arrives, with the low-point coming the month before, so is liquidation just around the corner?  Not necessarily.

The club has a couple of significant problems: it’s short of money and has significant monthly outgoings, but it also has assets, and may have buyers for those assets.

Murray Park is an outrageous folly and should be sold immediately.  Protests to secure it have been acts of self-harm; swallow your pride and sell.  This is a football club in acute danger, pretentions of grandeur, and Murray Park is exactly that, should be shed immediately.  Albion car park and the Edmiston House office building are superfluous property assets and could be sold without stopping football operations.

Mike Ashley has an asset Newco want back – stadium naming rights.  He could repatriate these rights as a sweetener in a deal to buy Murray Park, Albion and Edmiston.  Newco could leaseback the training ground, Sports Direct would be able to build a stonking big tracksuit shop on the Albion site and the club could boast to fans that they negotiated back Ibrox naming rights.

This might sound like a bitter pill but it will keep the lights on a little longer, makes irrefutable sense and is relatively painless.  The original Rangers existed for over a century without Murray Park, one of Scotland’s best run topflight football clubs’ Motherwell, train on a school sports field, Newco Rangers could do the same.  A little humility right now would be good for them.

There remains a problem: cumulatively, these assets are unlikely to be worth more than the £4m the club hope to raise in their proposed (not underwritten) share issue.  This is still not enough to see them through the season.  Expenditure for the last season accounts are available, 2012-13, averaged close to £3m per month.  The club will need close to £20m between now and season ticket renewal time.

Creditors must be paid or the club will go into administration.  To pay creditors, without sufficient income or credit, more assets must be sold, specifically Ibrox.

If they go into administration before selling Ibrox, don’t expect events to follow a similar path to the one Duff & Phelps took when administering Oldco Rangers.  Duff & Phelps were appointed by a liquidation specialist with a specific remit.  They even tried to sign a player.  Newco in administration would follow a more conventional route: redundancies would take place and assets would be sold to pay creditors.

Ibrox is the only significant asset administrators would have to sell.  It could generate enough to pay creditors in full and get the club through to the end of the season.  Finding a buyer would be the main challenge, but as we all now know, the club can stand or fall, but whoever controls Ibrox can continue to get a rental return from successor club.

An administrator could dismiss the manager and some other highly paid staff, reducing costs to a more manageable level, and pay ordinary creditors in full.

Newco Rangers need to finish in the top four to be in with a chance of promotion, which would be a challenge, but not an insurmountable one with the right manager in place.  They could be a top flight club next season.

This is not how fans wanted the Newco to progress but after they were unable to raise more than the £5.5m Charles Green’s consortium put on the table to buy Rangers assets, the future was mapped out.

Costs for police, insurance, electricity, IT, office staff, security and the million other items needed by a football club who occasionally host 50,000 people will be no less than circa £17m p.a – before you employ a footballer.

Newco’s income could rise from the £19m they earned in season 2012-13 (though possibly not this season), but there’s just not enough money to run a football team.  Scottish Premiership football would be a chastening experience, the levels of austerity required going forward would be draconian.

Fans can protest that they are watching the same old club all they like, but it’s not going to look anything like the Rangers you or I have ever known – and I knew them under John Greig.  And here’s the nub, the most optimistic financial projections are based on Newco selling the same number of tickets Oldco sold.  Would a Newco competing alongside St Mirren and Kilmarnock sell any more than the 23,000 season tickets they’ve sold this year?

The long-term financial fundamentals remain unchanged.  In 2012 the Blue Knights concluded there was no viable future for football at Ibrox if Rangers were liquidated.  Two years later all the evidence reaffirms that position.  This is a dead multi-club franchise.

Looking forward to the Maestro Match tomorrow.  See you there.

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  1. macjay1 for Neil Lennon on



    00:42 on


    8 September, 2014



    Aussies go to U.K. to remind themselves why their parents left.




  2. Magnificentseven on




    I don’t have that much time to enjoy my victory, but you can be sure my children will enjoy it if it comes, your children will be independent :-)

  3. Oh sorry NL and McCartney there will also be a backlash from England. That’s pretty understandable don’t you agree?

  4. Magnificent seven I think my children will be repenting for many years to come. That’s all our shame.

  5. Neil Lennon & McCartney on




    01:10 on 8 September, 2014



    Oh sorry NL and McCartney there will also be a backlash from England. That’s pretty understandable don’t you agree?




    Is that an apology? If so, I accept.



    No, I don’t think there will be a backlash from England. If there is, it will be against Westminster, not the Scots.

  6. NegAnon2


    01:02 on


    8 September, 2014



    Briefly as I do have some work to do before bed.



    The document maked is clear that when income tax is devolved Scottish taxpayers will have their ‘national rate’ (for lack of a better term) reduced by 10p, and this will be replaced by a ‘Scottish rate’ if this is set at 10p the taxpayer will no notice a difference. The block grant will be reduced to reflect this.



    Where I think it becomes ambiguous is that after period where rates and grant’s are fixed then both the ‘Scottish rate’ and the block grant will need to be calculated annually and may be subject to miscalculations. There’s no specific exampled of situations arising from the ‘Scottish rate’ being above or below he 10p level but it does suggest if we have a higher rate we’ll lose further block funding.



    I’ll try and look into further but on the face of it it does state that tax raising powers affect the block grant – maybe not in the way MWD intended tho.

  7. Magnificentseven on






    01:11 on



    8 September, 2014





    Magnificent seven I think my children will be repenting for many years to come. That’s all our shame




    Really!! we should be ashamed of wanting to govern ourselves, back of the bus for us eh???

  8. 16 roads - Celtic über alles... on

    Luke Kelly is, without a shadow of a doubt the greatest.



    Paddy Reilly said the very same himself.



    Personally speaking, different songs for different singers I reckon.



    Paddy’s own rendition of a powerful Scottish song, made famous by Luke.



    Some voice :




  9. No NL and McCartney the apology was only for th misunderstanding.



    This will be a bitter divorce.

  10. Weeminger this is a smaller part of the tarps raising powers which extended th 3p ability to alter taxes to 10pmbut contained a safeguard to stop Scotland wacking down the rate and benefiting from the block grant. We can raise taxes any time we want to.


    But domt….

  11. Magnificentseven on






    01:22 on



    8 September, 2014





    No NL and McCartney the apology was only for th misunderstanding.



    This will be a bitter divorce.




    Is there any other kind?

  12. Magnificent seven yes there is. But we seem to be enjoying the animosity both with our former partner and internally…..

  13. Delaneys Dunky



    00:46 on



    8 September, 2014






    This Glasgow born Irish/Pole wants a free Scotland open to all man.




    I was making a joke using St Stivs post.



    I see a sense of humour seems to have declared independence of the people of Scotland and fecked off into my auld heid.



    Guys. Chill (whilst I get serious).



    If some of the fears expressed in debate are real ones, when the time comes to grasp the nettle of detail, if that reality nettle stings too much then answers will be found out of mutual self interest..



    Apart from self determination what is the ultimate goal of independence?



    Is it the right to prosper or screw up all on our own or is self determination an objective in itself?



    I’ll tell you what makes me uneasy about the whole debate.



    1. That Tory policies are damaging to social aims there is no doubt and that there is a lot of anger at Labour for not defending social values there is no doubt. It seems some motivations come from that anger which is understandable but is anger a reason of itself to want separation?



    2. I cannot help get the feeling, perhaps as a result of the above, that there is a bit of “screw you, I’m alright Jack” thinking at play.



    I’m uncomfortable that motivations that show low or no reflection of love can lead to anything loving. By loving I mean the Corinthians version.



    The Way of Love



    1If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.


    2 And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.


    3 If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned,a but have not love, I gain nothing.



    4 Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant


    5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful


    6 it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.


    7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.



    8 Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away.


    9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part,


    10 but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away.


    11 When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways.


    12 For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.



    13So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.



    Does anyone really see Love as described here at play? Is it only me who is uncomfortable with what has been unleashed?

  14. Magnificentseven on

    That is your opinion and you are entitled to hold it, however I beg to differ, they will be thanking us for decades to come.



    I think you will find that I am as entitled to hold that opinion as you are yours, but democracy will decide and at the moment the no campaign is imploding

  15. Gordybhoy64



    Thoughts and prayers in support of your friends family and their son.


    In the morning I visit Doon Well,


    A special prayer will be said for all who are going through the same for strength and comfort at such a difficulf time.


    St.Colmcille pray for them



    An T

  16. Neil Lennon & McCartney on



    01:22 on 8 September, 2014



    No NL and McCartney the apology was only for th misunderstanding.



    This will be a bitter divorce.





    No misunderstanding on my part.



    You smeared the Scots.



    Shame on you



    BTW ~ you seem to be conceding that there will be a divorce – well done for that at least.

  17. Magnificentseven on






    01:25 on



    8 September, 2014





    Magnificent seven yes there is. But we seem to be enjoying the animosity both with our former partner and internally…..




    I am not falling out with anyone over this, we all have different views and this is the most important decision in generations, you will vote with what you feel and I will do the same, we happen to disagree, that’s how life works

  18. Neil Lennon & McCartney on



    01:26 on 8 September, 2014



    You could have just said……



    Love Is All You Need







  19. One of the arguments put to me was independence will leave a legacy for our children. My response was I have left mine an appreciation of ethics, decency and civility, after that they have enough gifts of their own to make their own legacy.



    I love this extract from Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet about



    Children that says just that.




    And a woman who held a babe against her bosom said, “Speak to us of Children.”



    And he said:



    Your children are not your children.



    They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.



    They come through you but not from you,



    And though they are with you, yet they belong not to you.



    You may give them your love but not your thoughts.



    For they have their own thoughts.



    You may house their bodies but not their souls,



    For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.



    You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.



    For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.



    You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.



    The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite, and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far.



    Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;



    For even as he loves the arrow that flies, so He loves also the bow that is stable.

  20. On factors affecting decisions.



    Had there been a Labour Government in power would it be as close as the polls suggest?



    Had the campaign been Lets Make It Even Better Together, would BT have avoided charges of scaremongering and lacking hope and would it be as close as polls suggest?



    I ask to make folk think about what they think.



    Not to influence their decision.

  21. Neil Lennon & McCartney on

    Dominic Behan: “Some years ago I tried to get Dylan to settle the matter as one artist to another, I rang him at an hotel in London where he had been living then. Dylan’s reaction was that I didn’t have the resources to take any legal action against him, and he therefore replied, `Get lost, bum! The songs I write make other people’s attempts at art good.’…I wrote the song (words and music) on the 1st January, 1957, after Feargal O’Hanlon had been shot dead…”




  22. Neil Lennon & McCartney on



    01:47 on 8 September, 2014



    On factors affecting decisions.



    Had there been a Labour Government in power would it be as close as the polls suggest? ………..YES



    Had the campaign been Lets Make It Even Better Together, would BT have avoided charges of scaremongering and lacking hope……NO



    …..and would it be as close as polls suggest? ……..YES

  23. Tricoloured Ribbon on



    I’ll definitely be over before Christmas buddy.


    Things here a bit wayward at the moment.


    I’ll be in Belfast in the next few weeks though.


    That is a certainty.;-)

  24. Charity wins at home for McStay


    Phil Gordon


    Monday 8 September 2014


    SIX weeks ago, James McAvoy made the dreams of some very poor children around the world come true, when he helped to raise millions of pounds for UNICEF at the Commonwealth Games opening ceremony at Celtic Park.




    Paul McStay applauds supporters after his ‘Maestros’ defeated Rio Ferdinand’s All-Stars at Celtic Park, raising money for UNICEF and War Child International in the process. Picture: SNS


    Yesterday, he was making his own childhood dream come true. On the same stage on which he co-hosted Glasgow 2014’s kick-off, McAvoy scored with a penalty in his beloved Celtic strip to help Paul McStay’s charity team in their 3-2 comeback success against Rio Ferdinand’s side.



    The Glasgow actor scored the equaliser as McStay’s Maestros came from 2-0 down before John Hartson’s match winner. For McAvoy, the moment might top the bill on his personal cv.



    However, the real winners were the Celtic FC Foundation and the Rio Ferdinand Foundation, which raised money for UNICEF and War Child International to support work in the Middle East, from a weekend that included a charity dinner and the receipts from a 20,000 crowd.



    McStay retired as a Celtic player 17 years ago and now lives in Australia, but had come back home at the pleading of Ferdinand, with the England defender being an admirer of the former Scotland captain. Now McStay can retire undefeated with an unblemished record after a win in his only match as player-manager. “Yes, maybe I will,” he laughed. “You can see how much scoring that goal meant to James. You should have heard James and Martin Compston last night. They could not wait to get here and maybe that goal will mean more to James than some of his other things.



    “It was a fantastic occasion. The fans who turned out have helped two great organisations and that is the really important thing. But hopefully they enjoyed the entertainment.”



    McAvoy rifled his penalty kick past Tomasz Kuszczak in a similar vein to Kris Commons here against Spartak Moscow in the Champions League in 2012. “I just kept my head down and didn’t look at the keeper,” said the actor. “But I am available now if Ronny Deila wants me.”



    Ferdinand joked that he had ‘allowed’ Frank McAvennie to net his fine volley because the Scottish striker had been one of his childhood heroes at West Ham.



    “It’s the West Ham connection isn’t it? I had to give him something. Frank was part of the folklore at the club when I was there. It was a great finish. I stood off him but I didn’t want Frank to leave on a stretcher.



    “I thought about cleaning him out. I didn’t think he’d finish it.”



    Celtic had a 12-man bench, hinting at the frequency of the substitutions that would take place during the warm afternoon for their ageing squad, while Ferdinand’s young crew – which included four players currently playing in the Barclays Premier League (Ferdinand, Joe Cole, Joey Barton and Kuszczak) – had just seven substitutes.



    While the football purists might have been keen to see Italian Gianfranco Zola start the game for Ferdinand’s team, the younger female element were there for Louis Tomlinson, the singer from boy band One Direction, as the early screams indicated when the right-back touched the ball.



    Paul McStay started the game alongside Lubomir Moravcik and Stiliyan Petrov in ‘dream team’ midfield for the Celtic supporters and lasted 16 minutes, not bad for a man who was told to stop playing altogether when he retired in 1997 because his knee injury could leave him crippled if he tried.



    Now 49, he cut a slightly different figure to the slim young midfielder who captured the hearts of the Celtic supporters for almost two decades. Just before McStay’s exit, Andy Cole had given Rio’s All Stars the lead with a composed right-foot finish past Robert Douglas. Paul Scholes was equally eye-catching for Ferdinand’s side, spraying passes and showing the zest which characterised his wonderful career for Manchester United and England. Bizarrely, Scholes gave way to comedian Jack Whitehall.



    Jordan Stephens from the band Rizzle Kicks came off the bench and scored with his first touch to give Ferdinand’s team a 2-0 lead, ghosting in at the back post to sidefoot a sublime chip from Zola past Douglas.



    McStay’s side equalised in the 68th minute, as Moravcik earned a penalty by duping Tomlinson into a challenge in the box. It was a soft award but McAvoy showed great composure to drive the ball past Kuszczak into the roof of the net.



    The Polish goalkeeper was complicit in McStay’s side snatching victory, when he fumbled Moravcik’s cross and allowed Hartson to pounce and roll in the rebound.



    The last word went to Zola, who never played here during his career.



    “It was a great stadium to play in,” he said. “I would like to come back one day to watch Celtic and Rangers.”

  25. 16 roads - Celtic über alles... on

    margaret mcgill



    03:36 on 8 September, 2014






    The cow cannot negotiate with the butcher.



    Useful idiot.



    There is no moderate Islam.There is no radical Islam.There is only Islam.






    The great secularist state eh?



    Turkey town, where another museum has just been turned into a mosque.



    Brilliant, is it not?




  26. Good morning friends from a very bright, dry, clear skied and optimistic looking East Kilbride.



    Great effort by Gordon Strachan’s Scotland last night.




  27. See posters – who, in a chronic duh moment in their precious existence – that try to label good Celtic men – ‘hun’…



    …just wanted you guys to know, that in my ‘duh moment’ opinion… you are the hun, not they.