The Ballad of the Billionaire
By Paul McConville
(With apologies to William Topaz MacGonagall)
Oh, ’twas in the year of two thousand and eleven,
When wining the SPL put Rangers and its fans into seventh heaven,
That dark storm clouds did then loom into sight,
And to the apparent rescue came a man named Whyte.
He bought the club for the sum of a pound,
Because, by Sir David Murray, no other buyer had ever been found,
And as well as the cash to buy up the team,
He found the cash to pay off the bank, which made the folk at Lloyds beam.
Mr Whyte proclaimed to the world his detailed plans,
And these were acclaimed by most of the fans,
But very soon after he stopped paying the bills,
And this caused many to swallow headache pills.
On the face of the deal it all seemed well,
But already the matters were in place for the fate which did later Rangers befell,
For Mr Whyte also ceased paying over the tax,
Which he denied and denied, but these were the facts.
The purchase of the team being done for one quid,
It being by far the highest sum bid,
Came down to Sir David and the Big Tax Case,
A massive bill up to which Rangers had failed to face.
The bill it arose due to EBTs,
Which seemed even more prevalent than a mangy dog’s fleas,
A device intended to reduce the tax paid,
As long as proper foundations for the scheme had been laid.
And so the Billionaire took full control,
A worldwide media and merchandise operation was his goal,
He even appointed Mr Misha Sher,
Though how Mr Sher was dealt with was hardly fair.
Whyte’s team now was lead by Super Ally,
With whom Whyte gave the impression of being really pally,
In fact Whyte was effectively a recluse,
Bain, Greig, McClelland and McIntyre all being cast loose.
The league season started with goals at a rush,
Building hopes and dreams Whyte was later to crush,
Rangers soon pulled many points clear,
And no one knew the horrors about to appear.
Well, that’s not quite true, it is fair now to say,
For there were various writers who saw it right to say
That they saw the disasters about to unfold,
But the Rangers support did refuse to be told.
RTC, CQN and alongside them a man,
Going proudly by the name of Phil Mac Giolla Bhain,
Who told the story clearly as it ran,
Much to the Rangers fans’ chagrin.
The warning signs were there to be seen,
But much of the media seemed scared to look behind the screen,
And observers threw their toys out of their prams
At the silence of the succulent lambs.
Rangers set off on their Europe sojourn,
To the land of Benny, Anna Frid and Bjorn,
But a thrown ball and a red card
Proved to make the challenge just too hard.
And so off to Maribor, in the East,
Where the spectre of defeat loomed like a terrifying beast,
And lo, as was feared, it soon came to pass,
Rangers were dumped out of the Europa League ….. on aggregate.
Thus the pebbles were set in motion
For what would be an avalanche, a financial commotion,
For the riches from UEFA had now all been lost,
And away with them the chance of survival was tossed.
And so over autumn and winter the bills they ran up,
And at the same time Rangers went out the League Cup,
And their lead at the top of the SPL, it had gone,
To a team bossed by a man called Neil Lennon.
Posted by Paul McConville