Analysis of Yesterday’s SFA Statement re Rangers FC

And lo! The tablets of stone have been brought down from the top of Mount Florida by Stewart Regan, in whom the SFA Board has “full confidence” (a feeling not replicated in too many other locations apparently).

The statement below, issued by the SFA yesterday, details all, or most, of the loose ends regarding Rangers FC. (As the football authorities are now referring to the football team owned by Sevco Scotland Ltd as “Rangers FC”, I will adopt the same practice). Nine questions are posed, and I have added my comments in bold under each section. The SFA questions are bold and underlined.

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Now that the status of Rangers FC has been clarified by the respective league bodies, the Scottish FA has compiled the following information to provide clarity and guidance on the remaining issues to be resolved.

1 When will the Scottish FA consider Rangers application for membership?

Now that the Scottish Football League have made a conditional acceptance of Rangers FC in Irn Bru Division Three we will now consider the club’s application for membership transfer this week.

“Conditional” acceptance by the SFL? That can only mean conditional on the SFA membership being transferred, or a new membership granted, to Rangers FC. The SFA will need to get a move on with its decision, or else, if it fails to do so, any legal challenge by Rangers FC could prevent the start of the football season, which is now only a week and a half away!

In addition, as Rangers FC cannot play matches, even friendlies, until approved, they might feel that they are being placed at even more of a disadvantage in preparing for the new season.

 

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2 How can Rangers be considered for membership when they can’t provide four years’ financial statements?

Sevco Scotland Ltd bought Rangers Football Club PLC’s share in the SPL and membership of the Scottish FA as part of their acquisition of assets. Under Article 14.1, Sevco Scotland are requesting the transfer of the existing membership of Oldco. This is different to an application for a new membership, which generally requires four years of financial statements.

However, Rangers Football Club PLC has not produced the required financial statements either! I wrote about this here.

Sevco Scotland Ltd is therefore applying for transfer of a membership which, if not for the change of owner, ran the risk of being removed or suspended as a result of the failure of Rangers Football Club PLC to comply with the relevant conditions.

The danger in allowing a company to pass membership to another to avoid loss of that membership is that this could be attempted by unscrupulous parties wishing to pass the membership to a connected person, whilst pretending to do so at arm’s length, thus preserving the membership, even where the missing financial records, for example, disclosed wholesale rule breaches.

(I am not suggesting that is the case with Rangers FC).

 

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3 When will the Appellate Tribunal be reconvened?

The Scottish FA has been in dialogue with Rangers FC in respect of the outstanding disciplinary sanction. The decision of the Court of Session to set aside the 12-month registration embargo was complicated by Rangers FC’s administration and subsequent request from Sevco Scotland for a transfer of membership of the Scottish FA. Again, now that the club’s status has been confirmed by the SPL and SFL, we will consider the award of transfer once Rangers FC satisfy the necessary criteria.

 

This answer seems to make no sense. First of all, I do not see how the decision of Lord Glennie was “complicated” by Rangers Football Club PLC being in administration. It was in administration when the case was brought. It was in administration when the case was heard by the Judicial Panel and by the Appellate Tribunal. It was in administration when the administrators took the case to the Court of Session to challenge the registration embargo. I do not see how the administration process complicates this at all.

Perhaps what the statement means is that the sale of the assets complicates matters, and this is more in tune with mention of the Sevco Scotland Ltd transfer request. In that case there might have been questions about whether or not the penalties should apply to Rangers FC now.

As the application is for a transfer of membership, and as Sevco want Rangers FC to play under the same name, in the same strip, with the same contracts and on the same pitch as last season’s Rangers FC, then this, by implication, means this is a continuation of the club which committed the offences, and therefore the Appellate Tribunal should be re-convened to determine what sanction, if any, to apply.

This would be the case, in my submission, even if Rangers FC and the SFA agree on conditions for transfer of membership to include a registration embargo. The Appellate Tribunal is independent of the SFA. The case is in the midst of the system. To maintain its independence it should be allowed to sit again, as ordered by the court, to conclude matters.

It may well be that, if Rangers FC accept, as a condition, a registration embargo, the Appellate Tribunal decide that they need not impose any additional sanction. That though is a matter for them, operating under the SFA Judicial Panel protocol, and not for the SFA.

One could imagine a scenario where the reconvening of an Appellate Tribunal could, for example, be of embarrassment to the SFA. Surely that body, by refusing to reconvene the independent Tribunal, ought not to be able to interfere with the “independent” procedures, whether in its own interests or those of the accused?

Should Rangers FC accept a registration embargo as a condition of membership transfer, then I cannot see the Appellate Tribunal doing anything other than imposing no additional sanction. However, if a team is five goals down at half time, and the result is a foregone conclusion, the rest of the game needs to be played out.

If on the other hand the SFA position, which is not clear in the above paragraph, is that the SFA Board will take the issue of the still extant Appellate Tribunal into account in determining the transfer application, it could be falling into the trap of “punishing” Rangers FC, rather than “setting conditions”. The label on what it does is important!

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4 Will Rangers’ original punishments be transferred to Newco?

The Scottish FA Board has the power to transfer membership under Article 14.1, which states:

“. . . Transfer of membership will be reviewed by the Board, which will have the complete discretion to reject or to grant such application on such terms and conditions as the Board may think fit.”
As mentioned in 3 above, the SFA needs to be careful about how it achieves the end it is aiming for. The law of the land, and the rules of football overlap, but do not coincide at all times.

Therefore any action taken in the civil court against Sevco Scotland Ltd by a creditor of “Rangers FC” in relation to goods or services supplied when that club was owned by Rangers Football Club PLC would be doomed to fail. Acquisition of the assets does not mean acquisition of the liabilities. Sevco Scotland Ltd and Rangers Football Club PLC are completely separate legal entities.

However, in football terms, they are closely connected. The plan is to play as the same club as before and indeed a huge part of the marketing plan of Sevco Scotland Ltd must be that it remains the same club.

One can imagine the howls of protest, and more seriously the effect on the cash flow, if Mr Green announced that his “Rangers FC” was nothing at all to do with the former club of that name, and therefore it was a brand new entity starting with a clean slate. Whilst some fans would see that as a clever tactical statement, when all along everyone knew it was the same club, I suspect that many would feel that in such an event Mr Green would have torn the fans’ club away from them. No matter how much sense therefore I would make in a business world to declare that there was no connection, in a football world Mr Green cannot do so.

Whilst Article 14 seems to give the SFA unfettered discretion as to what conditions it imposes, in my submission, this is not so. Any conditions imposed need to be relevant and reasonable.

If the SFA refused to transfer membership as a result of imposing an “unreasonable” condition, then this could be challenged in the courts by Judicial Review. In such a case it would not be for the judge to determine whether or not he or she thought the condition reasonable, but rather if it was so unreasonable that no reasonable Board could have reached it.

Thus the SFA needs to be clear why conditions are being imposed, even down to the labelling on them. Therefore, if the SFA tells Rangers FC that it must accept a condition of a registration embargo as a sanction for bringing the game into disrepute, I suspect that could be open to challenge as the court has already ruled that that penalty was ultra vires. However, if it is a condition, unrelated to the disrepute finding, and not a sanction, then I think Rangers FC would have a far harder time challenging it.

On a side note, I have seen suggestions that the SFA will be in contempt of court if (a) it fails to reconvene the Appellate Tribunal or (b) it seeks to impose a registration embargo as a condition of transfer of membership.

Neither is correct.

Lord Glennie ruled that the Appellate Tribunal did not have the power to impose the embargo for the offence for which it was imposed. As long as the SFA does not suggest that it is going to do so anyway, there would be no issues. In addition, if Rangers FC have a concern about the Appellate Tribunal not being re-convened, they can raise it with the court, but right now it clearly suits them not to have that proceed.

Lord Glennie, to the disappointment of many Rangers FC fans, will not be sending a Reliance van to Hampden to collect Mr Regan and convey him to the Court of Session.

It is interesting, I think, and in keeping with how they are dealing with the matter, that the “answer” to this question does not in fact answer the question!

 

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5 Will Ally McCoist be subject to a Compliance Officer Reference for his comments about the Judicial Panel?

The Compliance Officer communicated with Rangers FC in mid-June to confirm that the matter has been reported and will be initiated through the normal Judicial Panel Protocol upon conclusion of the other outstanding issues affecting the club.
This also seems odd, at first sight. What does the status of Rangers FC and the other issues affecting it have to do with a case against Mr McCoist? That can only suggest that, as well as proceedings against Mr McCoist, there are to be proceedings against Rangers FC too.

If that was not the case then the procedure ought to have been started by now, as the whole point of the Judicial Panel Protocol introduced last year is to deal with these matters as quickly as possible.

Indeed under the Protocol the SFA Compliance Officer is under a duty to issue a Notice of Complaint to the member of Team Staff alleged to have breached the rules. The relevant rule is shown below. It is framed in a contradictory manner. Rule 3.1 makes clear that, in relation to Misconduct by a member of Team Staff, the Compliance Officer shall issue a Notice of Compliant. However Rule 3.2, without reference to Rule 3.1 states that he may do so where the report does not come from a Match Referee.

3.1 Where the Compliance Officer is satisfied that alleged Misconduct by a member of Team Staff or official would if established amount to Misconduct, the Compliance Officer shall issue a Notice of Complaint to that person. The complaint shall be dealt with by the Disciplinary Tribunal under the Judicial Panel Protocol, except as where otherwise provided in these Disciplinary Procedures.

 

3.2 Where alleged Misconduct by a member of Team Staff or official is not reported by the referee, but the alleged Misconduct is brought to the attention of the Compliance Officer by whatever means, and he is satisfied that, if established, it would amount to Misconduct, he may issue a Notice of Complaint to that person. The complaint shall be dealt with by the Disciplinary Tribunal under the

Judicial Panel Protocol, except as where otherwise provided in these Disciplinary Procedures.

 

In any event, it seems that the only reason for a delay can be that Rangers FC is to be “prosecuted” along with Mr McCoist. Will this be factored into the SFA decision on transfer of membership?

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6 In what round will Rangers Newco join the William Hill Scottish Cup?

Under the Scottish FA’s Cup Competition Rules, Rangers FC as a third division club will join the William Hill Scottish Cup at the second round.

 

I wrote about this too here.

As far as a strict reading of the rules goes, Rangers FC do not have a right to be in the Scottish Cup yet. In addition, the rules about which round they will start in suggest that they could start in either Round 2 or Round 4. Finally, if they do start in Round 2, then, by my reckoning, the SFA will need to alter the teams who have a bye to Round 4, as there are only 15, rather than 16, in that position!

The problem arises because the byes for rounds 1 and 2 relate to current league position, but for Round 3 it is the previous year which counts.

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7 Why have the Scottish FA blocked the transfer of Rangers players to other clubs?

The Scottish FA issued a guidance note, based on legal advice and without prejudice, to both Rangers FC and PFA Scotland. Certain players have now chosen not to transfer across under TUPE regulations and, instead, agreed contracts elsewhere.

On a procedural basis, the Scottish FA cannot process an International Transfer Certificate via FIFA’s Transfer Management System where there is an ongoing contractual dispute.

Rangers FC have confirmed that there is such a contractual dispute. In the meantime, the new club(s) can request a temporary transfer from FIFA in order that the player(s) is free to play while the dispute process unfolds. This process has commenced in relation to a number of the players in question.

At the request of one of the parties in dispute, the Scottish FA, through its Articles, can convene an Arbitration Panel, with either side selecting from a list of Panel members, with the two appointees subsequently selecting a Chair of the panel. Rangers FC have made such a request to the Scottish FA.

We would naturally seek an outcome as soon as possible.

 

A fair answer here from the SFA, designed to make it clear that it should not be found liable for any losses caused to players who suffer detriment by this process. It also ensures that, if any players do allege financial losses, they would be entitled to pursue damages claims against Sevco Scotland Ltd, on the basis that this company is unlawfully interfering with the player’s rights to freedom of work. One wonders how long it will take for this process to resolve?

It is worthy of note that, under the SFA rules regarding player registrations, there is a specific provision for appeals from the Arbitration Panel to go to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Such a specific provision is not present in the SFA rules and Articles for most other disputes.

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8 Does the Scottish FA have a fit and proper person report for the new Rangers owner(s) and do we know who the main investors/directors are?

The Scottish FA has received private and confidential documentation from Sevco Scotland Ltd relating to the above. We have asked Sevco to provide further supplementary information and will consider that information this week.

Under new Scottish FA rules, it is a requirement of the outgoing club directors to conduct a full investigation under the Fit and Proper Guidelines. Given Rangers FC’s insolvency event, it has been incumbent on the administrators, Duff and Phelps, to carry out the necessary checks on the proposed new directors, as well as our own investigations.

 

Rangers FC had a deadline of 29th June to produce all the information required by the SFA. It said it had done so. Now it is the case that more information is needed. Is this because the details provided were insufficient, or because they have raised further questions?

The fact that it is referred to as “supplementary” information suggests the latter.

It is not clear from the statement if Duff & Phelps have carried out the checks on the new directors. If they have, then one wonders why the creditors of Rangers Football Club PLC should have to pay for that taking place.

If the asset sale was conditional on membership transfer, then one could understand this, but as D+P have said repeatedly, the sale was unconditional.

One can see why the SFA wanted to improve its assessment of the mythical fit and proper person rule. However, asking the seller to certify that the buyer is fit and proper is something which, I suspect, is only of cosmetic value. Here, after all, the sale took place effective on 14th June. Had D+P carried out all the checks then? At that stage no directors were known of other than Mr Green!

What happens if D+P now say that they are not satisfied Mr Green, for example, is fit and proper? If the sale is unconditional, it cannot be reversed by the SFA.

How likely is a seller to report that a purchaser is unfit, especially where, for example, the buyer is the only one there?

With today’s news that Sevco Scotland is threatening legal action against D+P, then one hopes that Mr Green has got from them what he needs, otherwise the paperwork might be slowed down rather!

If it turns out that Mr Green was not a fit and proper person, what could the SFA do to D+P? Prevent them being administrators of another football club? I don’t think so.

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9 What is the status of the investigation into use of Employee Benefit Trusts?

This is an investigation under the jurisdiction of the Scottish Premier League specific to player registrations. The SPL have recently confirmed they have prima facie evidence but as the potential appellate body, we cannot comment further at this stage.

 

As the SPL said before, they would initiate proceedings here prior to the start of the season. We are waiting to see if they manage to do so…

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Conclusion

The statement, whilst still leaving a number of issues undetermined, does move matters forward. There is still clearly a lot to do however.

The SFA has to decide on the transfer of membership. It cannot do so till it has the supplementary information requested from Sevco Scotland Ltd.

The list of requirements was made public in June, which included acceptance, as a condition, of a registration embargo. Has Mr Green accepted that, and the other conditions?

Is the SFA Board prepared to take the step of refusing the membership application?

Where does the SFA Licence fit in to this? Is it being taken along with the membership question?

When will disciplinary proceedings commence regarding Mr McCoist and Rangers? Will he accept the charge or seek a hearing?

Have D+P certified Sevco as “good guys” and will that change now they are being threatened with legal action?

These questions, and many more, remain to be answered…

 

Posted by Paul McConville

 

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29 Comments

Filed under Administration, Charles Green, Football, Football Governance, Rangers, SFA, SFL, SPL

29 responses to “Analysis of Yesterday’s SFA Statement re Rangers FC

  1. thedogbarks...

    Pt 2. is the one that really perplexes me in this dark and complex affair.
    It appears that in lieu of 4 years financial statements the SFA will accept 3 years statements + a fine for the non delivery of the 4th. Is my understanding correct and is this not totally baffling and against all regulatory logic and practice?
    Presumably, financial statements are required by authorities in order that issues of probity, solvency and financial management can be reviewed amongst other things.
    A fine for non delivery of the 4th year punishes the omission but does not in any way remove the requirement. To review probity, solvency etc. as above.

    Is there any precedent in any regulatory/governance field where a financial penalty for non-compliance satisfies and replaces the original regulatory requirement?

  2. David C MacKenzie

    You say:

    In addition, as Rangers FC cannot play matches, even friendlies, until approved, they might feel that they are being placed at even more of a disadvantage in preparing for the new season.

    So, who played against Airdrie in a ‘game’ last night?

    “Team: alexander cole broadfoot hegarty wallace Mitchell Hutton McLeod Crawford bedoya jig” (cut and pasted directly from Rangers Media)

    Scorers for the team: McLeod and Wallace. Airdrie got a penalty.

    Pictures:

    Was it just mates playing a nice friendly game in a park?

    • cmh64

      I wondered that last night. What name were they playing under? Who are the players actually registered to? If it wasn’t a sanctioned match, were the players insured? What would have happened if anyone got injured? Are Airdrie likely to face problems for playing?
      Who knows!

  3. redetin

    Paul, I assume that clause 4.21* of the CVA Proposal is still in operation as there was no end date given. So, Green can claim to be working both for Sevco Scotland Limited and Rangers FC PLC (In Administration). With the use interchangeably of the terms “Rangers”, “the club”, etc, no-one can know the real intent of Green when he comments. I’m reduced to reading SFA, BBC and other statements with the certainty that I will not get clarity. Thanks for taking the time to do a proper analysis of these statements.

    *4.21 From 6 June 2012, Charles Green will be appointed to assist in the day-to-day management of the business of the Company (at no cost to the Company or the Joint Administrators), in order to manage the ongoing trading costs of the Company and allow for a smooth transition in ownership.

    • ecojon

      @redetin – I wonder if the phrase ‘allow for a smooth transition in ownership’ could refer to organising the pie eating 🙂

  4. ecojon

    I had a troubled sleep last night and lots of strange dreams – must be those bloody pies the wife gave me for dinner.

    But it was weird, I dreamt that Sevco Rangers had got together £8 million in shareholding and was sitting pretty to pay D&P and have a bit of cash over to keep things ticking over till the season ticket money arrived.

    But then a guy arrived – I couldn’t make out his face but I’m sure I knew him and his name was on the tip of my tongue – he started counting a huge pile of cash and started looking at a pile of papers and kept saying No Way – I’m outa here! Then as he went he dropped a WANTED – DEAD OR ALIVE poster with the name Rafat Rizvi on it. That was really wierd as I had recently written about the guy explaining he was on the INTERPOL MOST WANTED LIST and that the Herald had named him as a Sevco Rangers secret investor which Green denied.

    Anyway to get back to my dream, the guy waving the wanted poster about grabbed about half the cash and waltzed out the door with it shouting back that if Rizvi was in he was out. He didn’t actually shout that he just tore the wanted poster into small pieces and flung them oin the floor but you know how in dreams you can hear people speak even though their lips don’t move and there’s no sound – it’s a bit like Charlie Green saying he’s going to see Uefa/Fifa in Switzerland and they say no meetings scheduled.

    Strange stuff eh? Maybe it wasn’t the pies – could have been the mushrooms. I think I must have been dreaming about the SFA doing a fit and proper test on Sevco Rangers directors or shareholders when all this jumbled stuff in my brain came together in a dream.

    But imagine that it was true – that would be something else. If a guy who had put or had pledged £4 million in shareholding suddenly ripped it out because an Interpol fugitive had some kind of financial dealings with Sevco Rangers then it would make a great film. And if he knew that then the SFA would spot it easily so it really is just a dream, isn’t it?

    What would it do to Sevco Rangers though if it were fact – they would have to scrabble to replace the £4 million and I keep wondering whether the £5,5 million purchase money has ever actually been paid in hard cash. I know money according to the latest D&P reports is described as being in a lawyer’s client fund – but is that real money or has another lawyer acting for someone else just ‘guaranteed’ it will be paid on a certain date like the day before BDO arrive at the end of this month.

    I do know the settlement details of the oldo sale are secret and I’ve never ever been able to find out when the sale cash was to be paid over to D&P.

    All puzzling stuff but exciting eh 🙂

    • degough

      ecojon, I am sure I read that Green has to pay the 5.5 million on the 30th July the day before BDO take over.
      I get the feeling that Green is in Greece and Switzerland trying to get the cash together and that the “investors” where promised at worst division 1 football. Will he pull it off?

      • ecojon

        @degough

        As soon as I heard Eufa/Fifa not only stating they had no meetings scheduled with Green and in any case it wasn’t their problem so wouldn’t be involved then I immediately believed that he had gone to Geneva where a certain Alessandro Celano works. If you remember Green linked Swiss businessman Alessandro Celano with the secretive Blue Pitch Holdings. We don’t know if the two men are one and the same but it’s quite a coincidence especially.

        And the casual throwaway remark of Green that he is going to Athens to arrange a friendly with Olympiakos after/before the Uefa meeting just makes me think he is seeing Sevco Rangers Greek investors that seem to be floating about.

      • redetin

        degough, I have not seen anything other than 4.23* of the CVA Proposal which does not say if and when funds have to be transferred. The terms of the sale are confidential. There will be plenty wriggle room in the contract if Green wants out.

        *4.23 In the event that either this CVA is not approved, or the other Conditions of the loan are not satisfied or waived by 23 July 2012, Sevco is contractually obliged to purchase the business and assets of the Company for £5,500,000 by 30 July 2012. All further terms of that sale have been agreed in advance and are confidential.

      • redetin

        degough, have you seen confirmation that BDO are to take over on 31st July?

      • degough

        As far as I can remember I read somewhere that BDO would take over as soon as the sale of assets was completed. This leads to the 31st July date.

      • ecojon

        @redetin

        You may have spotted the wriggle room 🙂

        ‘4.23 In the event that either this CVA is not approved, or the other Conditions of the loan are not satisfied or waived by 23 July 2012, Sevco is contractually obliged to purchase the business and assets of the Company for £5,500,000 by 30 July 2012.’

        Now suddenly Green is claiming D&P have dunned him out of £500K before the 23 July 2012 and next thing he’ll sue and walk away from the sale. Could be a solution for him.

  5. ecojon

    One of the things that fascinates me is all the media stories claiming the SFA will be grilling Sevco Rangers on the identity of the mystery shareholders.

    According to the official minute of the RFFF Green told a public meeting on 4th July that he had revealed the names of the individual investors to the SFA and reps of the RFFF.

    The minute reads:

    ‘c) Current Investors
    C Green read out the list of existing shareholders, the bulk of these being in the form of ‘trust funds’. It was out with the law and FSA rules for the individuals involved in these trusts to be made public. However, in satisfying the SFA, representatives of the SAF (I assume this is a typo and should read SFA) had signed a confidentiality agreement and subsequently been given sight of the respective individuals. A similar arrangement was made available to 2 representatives of the RFFF committee and they, in turn, confirmed they had seen the list and were satisfied with the detail contained therein.
    It was noted that one such trust, Blue Pitch Holdings, currently owned 23% of the shares.’

    So where does the truth lie? Were the SFA told? Were the Rangers Bears at the SFFF meeting told the truth? Were the two RFFF committee reps told? Is Green mistaken in what he says or is it another case of his lips not matching his words?

    What a tangled web is weaved.

  6. p groom

    perhaps we have misjudged regan ? (only joking) . he and green actually ditched/ignored a raft of rules and regs to get sevco into sfl but now having got them there (although not in the div they wanted) regan is now playing hardball on the rules and regs. green must be thinking ” perfidious ecosse”.

  7. NeFisher

    A point regarding Highland teams in the Scottish Cup, Turrif United and Formartine United were eligible for entry into the Scottish this year after going through the relevant procedures, a further club Strathspey Thistle have not yet gained entry. My understanding (which may be wrong ) is that the two clubs have now been licenced and this was why they were able to be considered. Is it possible to draw a comparison between Strathspey and Sevco, neither appear to meet the requirements for entry to the Scottish Cup but it looks like one (Sevco ) will be in based on the prelimenary draw that has already taken place and these two games are due to take place in early August.

    • ecojon

      @NeFisher

      God I would never slight Strathspey by comparing them to Sevco, We have to make sure that all these issues are addressed and not lost in the so-called Clash of Titans refereed by the pygmies of the SFA.

      We can expand the Scottish Game by strong local teams that are run on a sound financial basis with good community support that also gives local youngsters a real chance not just to dream but to become stars.

      • cmh64

        NeFisher: My understanding was the same: that the highest placed teams with a license were invited into the draw, as long as they hadn’t been invited into the draw last time.
        Interesting point about Sevco though.

      • NeFisher

        cmh64, the top two Highland licenced clubs, Wick and Iverurie Locos were invited into the Ramsden Cup this season, they play if memory serves me correctly, Raith and Montrose.
        This seasons Scottish Cup has all Highland teams except Strathspey Thistle.

  8. Grabthegrass

    Paul,

    Your first four paragraphs in response to item 4 is the nub of the question and should be cut out and pasted into every comment which comes up about new rangers vs old rangers. Green is being forced into new rangers = old rangers by both sentiment and marketing AND by the rules of the SFA and SPL whereby transfer of a share / membership is the only option open to him to keep a football club alive. Without this there is no way any football could feasibly be played at Ibrox this season as otherwise the “club” really would have died and had to come back as a community club in the leagues below the SFL as has happeend to a number of other mainly lower league clubs.

    I now refer to this as the Dr Who principle – it’s the same “character”, but clearly a different actor, who is “regenerated” every now and again and continues using the same effects (sonic screwdriver, the tardis, time travel etc).

    In terms of timing it will be very interesting to see if the SFA and rangers manage to meet their deadline of the end of this week. I’m sure I saw somewhere a potential for New Rangers first match to be postponed because all the permissions etc wouldn’t be inplace or meetings taken place to ratify it all. However this could have applied to Dundee as Old Rangers still need to offically give up their share or a meeting needs to be arranged by the SPL to forcibly remove it.

    In terms of money changing hands, my impresison is that D&P have stated that it has. if not I cannot understand how or why the transfer of the assetts in the land registry which was disclosed a few weeks ago has taken place. It really would be beyond belief for D&P to transfer over the property assetts without having real money (not promises) in their bank account.

    I think that there was enough cash Green had raised (actual cash or loans) to buy the business and assets, but was working on the presumption that a) he would be able to sell circa £15MM worth of players even for their reduced purchase price, b) he would be getting at least £10MM season ticket sales and c) he would be playing in SPL or Div 1.

    Now that none of that has happened he’s now running out of cash, so he’s on a desperate run around the shadowy trusts and appointees on a cash call simply to keep it all afloat while the rest of the board try and deal with the paperwork with the SFA. I personnally think he won’t manage it (either the cash call or the paperwork) and the current investors will simply see New Rangers to be the bottomless pit that the BKs and Bill Mirray saw it would be and New rangers will go into admin sometime this season unless some other bigger fool or fools come along and take it off their hands. For the end results see Portmouth FC who have gone along a similar line but now still have huge debts including “football” debts which need to be paid, no assets to speak of and are facing further relegation and potential “true” liquidation.

    • ecojon

      @grabthegrass – The apocalypse is nigh but this is an excellent post.

    • stephen pinchin.

      Old or new. Let’s not forget the power of the little dish on the wall aka satelite receiver. This is the biggest influence in this puke inducing saga. The holders of the current live match contract with the SPL must be under massive pressure from the number crunchers to sell advertising slots for next season. Imagine the pressure the SPL are under now that one of the providers of the serious stuff, local derby par excellance, has seriously self harmed. We as footie supporters haven’t a bloody clue what is going on in the dark alleys of Scottish footie. Which is probably just as well. Kick off day looms ever closer,Nothing has been resolved and we are becoming a laughing stock of a footballing nation thanks to those pompous, avaricious plonkers in charge of our game.

      #for next season.

  9. ADM

    Loving ecojon’s dream and grabthegrass’s Dr Who analogy.

    Beginning to feel like the only good news for Rangers is that, by the time they’ve worked their way back up to the top of the junior leagues, there will be a proper pyramid scheme in place… really struggling to see a scenario where they can complete a full slate of senior games in the 2012-13 season (at least under Sevco ownership).

  10. JimBhoy

    Green out of the country allegedly arranging a friendly he has no right to arrange and allegedly going to meet UEFA reps to discuss football matters he has no right to even attempt to discuss as he owns no club. He now plans to sue D&P and he is NOT busting a gut to give the sfa sufficient information to process his new club’s registration… ALL this with less than 2 weeks before KO… I fear Mr Green is playing a waiting game, cat and mouse with reagan, the longer this process takes to complete the more pressure on reagan and longmuir as the fog of uncertainty sits.
    Chairman of the SFL clubs need to know IF they will be playing Rangers FC over the forthcoming weeks to prepare…
    Green has the SFA and some of the SFL team by the cajoneys…

    • Grabthegrass

      I agree that Green is probably playing a waiting game to see who blinks first, but I think he may have underestimated Regan who I am quite sure was given a fairly hard time in private by the SFA board, especially after his e-mail became public, and told this time in no uncertain terms you need to stick to the rules or else. It’s amazing what the prospect of public humiliation and unemployment will do to people…..I think he’s now been around football long enough to know what a “vote of confidence” by the board really means!

      Longmuir won’t really care about Div 3 losing a team – it won’t cost much to compensate them – but they now need to be seen to be in charge after the complete shambles of the last few months.

      I thought the issues had been more or less settled after the meeting last Mnday, but it appears not. I suspect lots more to come.

  11. mick

    great read agian paul well technical put you have explianed it well for all to read pity the msm cant do the same and tell it like it is

  12. Marching on Together

    Paul, with respect I disagree with you on question 4, and the possibility of a court reviewing the sanctions that newco Rangers might be forced to agree to.

    Using the example of my own club (Leeds Utd), newco Leeds and the Football League agreed a Compromise Agreement (i.e. a contract) to facilitate the transfer of the golden share by the Football League to Leeds newco. This agreement stated in Clauses 1.1.3, 1.1.4 and 1.1.5 that Leeds newco expressly confirmed the Football League’s Board’s absolute discretion under Articles 4 and 6 to refuse or accept the transfer to Leeds newco. Clause 1 also provided that Leeds newco acknowledged and agreed that: “The Board has determined that the appropriate sanction should be the imposition of a penalty points deduction of fifteen championship points in Season 2007/8 subject to an appeal to the member clubs of the League as outlined in Clause 3 below.”

    Clause 4.2 provided that: “Except for the obligations created by this Agreement Leeds hereby covenants that it shall not, and will procure that its directors, associated companies …, shareholders, officers or other employees shall not commence, or threaten to commence, any proceedings in any jurisdiction before any court, arbitration panel or other similar judicial body against the Released Parties (including by way of third party claims in any other action) arising out of or connected, whether directly or indirectly with any of the Claims.”

    Leeds newco appealed to the membership of the Football League in general meeting (unsurprisingly unsuccessfully), and then sought to go to the High Court despite the terms of Clause 4.2. Eventually an arbitration panel was convened in terms of the FA’s Regulation K, headed by a High Court judge. This panel stated that the Compromise Agreement “was a commercial bargain, at arms length between a powerful and rich Consortium of businessmen and a responsible professional Sports Governing Body” and in conclusion “We are satisfied that the Claimants case begins and ends with the Compromise Agreement which clearly embodied the intention of both parties. Taking the Agreement as a whole and in particular Clause 4 Leeds newco agreed to the imposition of the 15 points and to release the League from the claims which have now been advanced and to waive any rights to do so. Leeds newco specifically covenanted not to bring the claims it has now sought to assert and there is no basis to allow it not to honour that covenant.”

    Applying this case to newco Rangers, if the SFA’s lawyers draft the appropriate agreement in the same way i.e. barring any appeal to the courts or judicial review, then Rangers will not be able to do so. Indeed if they do, they would be in material breach of contract, and the SFA could revoke the transfer.

    The judicial review of the SFA Appellate Panel’s decision was based solely on the basis that the Panel had imposed a penalty that it was not within its power to impose. The SFA in the transfer of registration situation have absolute discretion as to what conditions they wish to impose, and a court would not entertain any such case, as newco Rangers would be personally barred from initiating it.

  13. Marzipan Joe

    Hi Paul,
    thanks for explaining the legal implications of Lord Glennie’s ruling with regard to the AP.
    May I stride off topic again for a question besides?
    The Herald today wrote about the posibility of again elevating the Glasgow Cup to a senior competition in order to offer more Celtic / “Rangers” matches to potential broadcasters.
    I have tried to find the terms of membership for the Glasgow FA. I will put following questions to the organisation:

    1.) Does Sevco Scotland Ltd. retain membership of the Glasgow FA irrespective of the iminent liquidation of Rangers plc;

    2.) If not, is their an application process outlined in the rule and regulations of the Glasgow FA;

    3.) What, if any, are the criteria for membership;

    4.) Is there a deadline to be met for any application process to be completed in order to guarantee participation in next seasons compettion.

    The only information I found in the Glasgow FA website on membership is here:

    http://www.glasgowfa.co.uk/glasgowcup1112.html

    4. Membership
    All clubs in membership of the Glasgow Football Association shall be eligible to compete for the trophy.

    Since the liquidation process of Rangers plc is not yet fully completed that their list of clubs now defunct might be updated at a later date.

    http://www.glasgowfa.co.uk/clubs.html

    I wonder if anyone on this blog site has any inside information on the rules and regulations of membership to the Glasgow FA to give me more of a background.

    Thx.

    • Marzipan Joe

      Sorry, silly me:
      Just found this on the Glasgow FA website:

      5. Participation
      Each club wishing to participate in the Competition for the ensuing season shall notify the Secretary of the Glasgow Football Association in writing, no later than the 31st day of May in each year.

      Wonder if anyone at Rangers iA remembered that deadline…

  14. kieren

    When and if Rangers gain permanent transference of the SFA membership from the old company to the new company does this continue the historical timeline of the club founded in 1872,is it recognised as a continuos club.

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