Pay Cut for Ally McCoist? Does Rangers’ Boss Have Highest Basic Wage in Scottish Football?

Rangers* do not have financial problems. Their Finance Director made that clear last week. They have £10 million in the bank after all!

But the doubts are still there. When former Directors like Messrs Johnston and King talk of administration, that, especially to Rangers fans, should ring warning bells.

So it was against that backcloth that the press reported Mr McCoist’s willingness to consider whether or not to accept a wage cut, if asked.

Recent criticism of spending at Ibrox has mentioned the salaries of executives and management. Mr McCoist’s basic wage is understood to be £700,000 (plus bonuses). As that was his salary with the now liquidated Rangers, he was entitled to insist on keeping those terms when his employer changed from Rangers Football Club PLC to Sevco Scotland Ltd/The Rangers Football Club Ltd and thence to Rangers International Football Club PLC.

He deserves credit of course for agreeing, it is understood, to a significant pay cut during the period of administration in 2012.

However he also appears to have been richly rewarded, including the issue to him of 1 million shares, described by some commenters as effectively “reimbursement” for the significant financial compromise he made to help his employer in 2012.

So what did he actually say? The Sunday Mail reported, at the above link, as follows:-

McCoist last night admitted he’d be prepared to take a pay cut to stop Rangers’ finances hitting the skids again.

After a week when the club’s finances have come under severe scrutiny by the fans, McCoist’s salary of around £700,000 hasn’t escaped attention.

McCoist said: “Has anyone asked me to take a drop? No. Would I consider it if asked? Yes.

“So if someone said to me your wage bill is too high or your staff is too high, then that’s fine I can react to that. But until that comes it’s not my gig.”

It is not my place to say that Mr McCoist does not deserve his salary. That is a matter for his employers and for the shareholders of his employers. And, as the Good Book says, “the labourer is worthy of his hire”.

But if the general issue being discussed is the financial prudence of the Rangers Board post-Craig Whyte, as it is, then consideration must be given to Mr McCoist’s position, as indicative of the wider attitude of the Board.

Unlike in American sports, the salaries of Scottish footballers are not formally published. Therefore it is hard, though not impossible, to work out what players and managers are on.

It can be said however that Mr McCoist is undoubtedly one of the top two highest paid football managers in Scotland and, based on press reports about Neil Lennon’s wages being increased from £200k per year a couple of years ago, Mr McCoist is almost certainly the highest paid, and by some margin. Indeed I have heard from good sources that his earnings exceed that of the Parkhead management team added together!

As far as players go, wages are also made hard to calculate as a result of bonuses etc.

However, the website, Sporting Intelligence, carries out an annual survey of average wages in major team sports. In January 2011 Nick Harris reported the following (and the full piece can be read at this link):-

Celtic got off to a flyer in 2011 today by beating Rangers 2-0 in the Ne’erday derby, but one sign of how dramatically Scottish football finances have continued to deteriorate in the past year is found in Celtic’s deal to sign Freddie Ljungberg until the end of the season.

Freddy Ljungberg in his normal position for Celtic when he was the highest paid player in Scotland

Freddy Ljungberg in his normal position for Celtic when he was the highest paid player in Scotland

Ljungberg, who did not play today because he has a virus, earned £16,000 per week in Major League Soccer in the USA, most recently with Chicago Fire, and Celtic put together a deal that effectively matches it to sign the Swede, 33, until the end of the season. That pay packet is understood to give Ljungberg the highest guaranteed basic wage per week in Scotland currently.

So, as at January 2011 the highest weekly basic wage in Scottish football was around £16k per week, or £832,000 per annum. Since then all of the highest earners at Rangers (or at least those on the playing field) have departed. As for Celtic, I would be surprised if any of its new signings are on a salary at that level, and few, if indeed any, of its existing players will earn a basic close to that sum.

So, on the face of it, is it possible that Ally McCoist has the highest basic wage in Scottish football? Very much so!

Few managers, it is fair to say, have had the challenges to face which confronted Mr McCoist.

After all, for the group of players one manages to ply their trade one season in the top division and then, in the immediately succeeding season, be three levels down, is not an experience many managers round the world have had.

In addition he lost the services of his highly-paid star players, leaving him reduced to only a handful of full internationalists and youngsters who had represented their countries. Facing such a mountain, and being backed only buy the second or third highest wage bill in Scottish football, Mr McCoist managed to overcome the part-time teams which faced Rangers* and led them triumphantly to winning SFL3 (something no Rangers team had ever done before).

Mind you, whilst his challenges might have been unique, it still seems awfully extravagant for the man leading the challenge to be the highest paid person in Scottish football!

If I was given the chance to speak to Mr Stockbridge, or even Mr Green, about this I would ask them the following questions:-

  • Was any consideration given to reaching an agreement to terminate Mr McCoist’s appointment prior to the Green takeover? (The answer is probably negative, as he was an integral part of the process of reassuring fans about the future, and selling season tickets in 2012).
  • Was any consideration given to re-negotiating his salary at or following the Green takeover? (The employer could not insist on this under TUPE regulations, but could have sought to reduce the wage packet by agreement).
  • Was any consideration given to asking Mr McCoist to reduce his wages at some stage, either to reflect the reduced income of Rangers, or directly to help keep the company financially afloat?
  • Was the issue of shares to Mr McCoist intended as a quid pro quo for his wage cut during administration, or was it hoped that he would allow his contract to be re-negotiated, with 1 million shares acting as a “sweetener”?
  • Do they think it is prudent financially to pay their manager what might be the highest wage in Scottish football to get the team up from the fourth tier to the third, and then from the third to the second?

And as for Mr McCoist, first of all I should make it clear that it is nobody’s right to tell him he is being paid too much – good luck to him!

However, being, as he is, an honest man and a devotee of Rangers, surely he would realise that there would be value to his employer in reducing his pay (even temporarily) to free up more funds for investment in the team or its infrastructure?

Why wait for an approach from the Board?

If he gets on as well as he undoubtedly does with his CEO, why not suggest a reduction, or a re-structuring, to him?

Bobby Bonilla - the King of Restructured Contracts

Bobby Bonilla – the King of Restructured Contracts

(Talking of restructuring, many of my readers will never have heard of Bobby Bonilla, but his example is the most ridiculous and yet most memorable contract re-structuring ever. Mr Bonilla was a star player for the New York Mets baseball team. In 2000 he was due to be paid $5.9 million. The Mets wanted him off the books to free up money to sign someone else. They therefore agreed that, if Mr Bonilla would defer his right to the $5.9 million, the Mets would buy him an annuity which would pay him $1,193,248.20 on July 1 every year from 2011 through to 2035. So his agreeing to defer under $6 million results in him receiving almost $30 million! His deal survived the Mets investing the annuity with Bernie Madoff and, unless the Mets go out of business Mr Bonilla will continue to receive over a million dollars every year up to and including the year he turns 72. He never played a single game for the Mets under this restructured contract. Mind you, as the re-structuring depends on the Mets staying in business, one might see why Mr McCoist might not want to take the same risk with Rangers*!)

Telegenic personality that Mr McCoist is, surely the shortfall in his own earnings could be supplemented by some guest appearances on a Question of Sport or Loose Women?

If Mr McCoist takes a pay cut - maybe he could get a guest slot back on A Question of Sport?

If Mr McCoist takes a pay cut – maybe he could get a guest slot back on A Question of Sport?

If Rangers need to watch the pennies just now, then, with the greatest of respect, they cannot afford the most expensive manager in Scottish football, can they?

If an employer cannot afford to pay an employee, then it is possible to agree a revised pay deal, or, in the absence of agreement, potentially to make them redundant. However I suspect that it would be seen by the fans as a betrayal if Mr McCoist, who boldly stated that he did not do “walking away”, was forced out on financial grounds.

(However if sacked for his performance, I suspect that a number of Rangers fans would have no problem with such a decision!)

The final question therefore is whether or not Mr McCoist is a luxury which a third tier football team can no longer afford.

Posted by Paul McConville



Filed under Administration, Rangers, TUPE

58 responses to “Pay Cut for Ally McCoist? Does Rangers’ Boss Have Highest Basic Wage in Scottish Football?

  1. Budweiser

    Fatboy Slim deserves every penny .Long may he reign ! Absolutely !!

    • cam

      Is that Lawwell you’re talking about? 🙂

    • Maggie

      Very much so ! 🙂
      I see Mr Mc sneaked that little bon mot of Sally’s onto the end of his sentence …….”is it possible that Ally Mc Coist has the highest basic wage in Scottish football”
      Tut tut,Bud,there’s no need for that now,is there? 🙂

  2. cam

    Aah the green eyed monster rises.
    Wee Ally, a man not blessed cerebrally,,as they say in Glesca toon,,up here fur thinkin,doon here fur dancin,gets paid more than most succesful lawyers*.
    Top scorer,Golden boot winner,Scottish internationalist,popular with the ladies,popular with everyone apart from the hate mhob,TV personality,able to bridge the sectarian divide,respected by every decent Celtic supporter until the arrival of football’s angriest man,manager of the world’s most succesful club and even in the midst of the biggest crisis to hit the Gers still loved by the People.
    We don’t care what the Celtic say
    why the hell should we care
    for we only know
    that there’s gonna be a show
    and the Glasgow Rangers
    will be there!

    • Fisherking21

      I like to think of myself as a decent person. I work. I pay my taxes. I try to live a life that my children and grand children can look on as a good example. I also support Glasgow Celtic. I do not respect Mr McCoist. His outbursts, grandstanding and bile make this next to impossible for me to do. The very fact that “The People” hold him in such high regard is a pointer to his character. Reading Cam’s comment one might be led to believe that Ally should be canonized. I think not

      • graham

        Mr f’king ,
        I do all those things too except the celtic supporting and the grandchildren stuff ( for now anyway ) .
        So that must also place me in postion to comment on the fella who didn’t walk away . For you to suggest thatsuper ally comes out with bile is a bit over the top
        Think you should look at your own current manager for that !
        His DOB rant and spitting on the rangers scarf , his racist comments to rangers players at half in an OF are proof enough ,
        Can you give me an example if the bile your refer too .
        Oh I see mr stokes is ‘all shook up ‘ in Dublin today !!

        • Monti

          How would you describe someone who cheats on their wife while their child lay sick in hospital?
          I have my own thoughts, how about you Graham?

          • Sevco United

            A cheat, perhaps.

            How would you describe someone who cheats on their pregnant girlfriend getting someone else pregnant, whilst doing so, then sending threatening texts to the burd he cheated with ?

            I have my own thoughts, how about you Monti?


            • Monti

              how do you feel about a fat goalkeeper wearing a black armband in support of a loyalist murdering bastard,I have my own thoughts sevcovite, how about you 🙂

            • Sevco United

              How do you feel about a footballer playing in Scotland attending a fund raising event for an IRA terrorist loving bastard, i have my own thoughts on that Monti ! How about you ? 🙂

            • Monti

              @ Sevco, how did you feel about Rangers (IL) playing the sectarian orange card, orange strips & having sectarian flute bands at pre season friendlies v Linfield?
              I have my own thoughts Sevco how about you?

          • graham

            Is that not what Lenny did to his pregnant girlfriend when he dumped her by txt as she was in hospital in fact was it not fuck of colourful industrial language ! Back to you monti !

        • Name The Names, when it was already know, dreadfull and out of Business, Rule on Ally, Bankrupt Sevo, like SDM did for the previous incarnation !!!

        • Kerrygirl

          He’s not walking away cos eez up to his knees in twa boab shares, again he and Walter the vaulter (cleared the broomlands road stand oan his road ooot) knew ,,, they know who owns what, so why not tell the fans, if there is nothing to hide,the best bet would have been for vaulter not to accept the chairmans job no one would have bought season books ,and hughie greens brother “I mean this most sincerely folks” would have shot the craw

      • cam

        Ally has his faults.
        Outbursts?,,,having a word face to face in Lennon’s ear?,,,good man,don’t say anything through the press,do it up close and personal.
        Grandstanding?,,,who are these rockets?,,we don’t do walking away?,,get in there Ally.
        Bile?,,,,expand on that FK21.
        Canonized,,,,wtf is that?

        • Budweiser

          ‘Canonized,,,,wtf is that?’

          It’s when they stuff some geezer in a big gun thingy and bang!! Don’t think fatboy will fit in the canon. Does that help?

      • Ben McGinlay

        Totally agree Fisherking21. I too could have written that, whilst adding religion plays no part in my life…also what Neil Lennon has had to put up with since living on these shores is a f’king disgrace, is it any wonder he reacts the way he has done in the past, it’s not an excuse but very understandable.

    • Kerrygirl

      Cam your jam Cam

      • cam

        Kerry, i dinnae ken whit that means.I do approve of your improved vocabulary though.

        • Fra

          Kerry n Cam….I’m beginning to see a wee cyber relationship developing. Keep it coming folks. I can always say ‘I was there as their clatter boards met across the cyber space’

    • Monti

      Definitely popular with one lady…as his son was seriously I’ll in hospital…cheeky chappy tho,it’s alright. :/

    • alfredthepict

      Ally is very popular with we celtic supporters ! We think he is brilliant ! hope he stays for years and years 1 Honest !

  3. cam

    C’mon bhoys and Ted,,get stuck in,,i’m away oot fur a pint!

    • Monti

      Nice quiet seat in the garden with a large glass of Chateaux Mont Du Pape, copy of An phoblacht & Tiocfaidharla!
      Quiet reflection of our Republican heroes at peace,I’m sure a dove with a broken chain just landed beside me, hello Bobby, I hope you are well my friend!

      • cam

        If i had the wings of a sparrow
        if i had the arse of a crow
        i’d fly over your garden 2moro
        and shoite on that rocket below.

        Monti,,,just tae let ye know,,,,he’s deid 🙂

    • Kerrygirl

      Your not allowed out

  4. jim62

    Don’t think he can be made redundant just because his wages are too high…presumably his post would still exist??

  5. Geddy Lee.

    The more you read about McCoist, the less likeable he becomes.

    What’s truely astonishing is that rather than lose percieved face in front of celtic fans, imbeciles like poor old cam will continue to defend this serial failure, all the way to financial meltdown.

    After all, everything is Whyte and Lawwels fault LOL

  6. Sevco United

    Scott Brown is on more than McCoist. Not that the wage isnt ridiculous mind you.

    • JimBhoy

      @Sevco I think the use of the phrase ‘basic’ might be centric to Paul’s post as I know first hand that most footballing contracts are a basic plus many more incentive pieces, ie, getting a place in the squad to play, appearance money, per point, per win, (competition dependent incentives, (I recall Durrant getting on for the last 2 mins in a rangers Euro game for a reputed 60k appearance money), reaching top 6, reaching cup final, winning cup x etc… Some even have goals scored, assists, so could even extend to shut outs etc..

      • Sevco United

        Scott Brows basic wage will still be higher than £13k per week.

        • JimBhoy

          I have no way of verifying that…Mibees ayes mibees naws… What do you think of: 1. The recent accounts of Mccoist and backroom staffs’ salaries? 2. All those other execs getting large bonuses on winning the 4th division? 3. Chico getting 300k to walk then coming back in whatever capacity he wants? Some would suggest he never left..!

  7. josephmcgrath112001809

    If Mr. McCoist is fulfilling his contract then he deserves his contracted salary. I certainly would not advise him to give up his contract. Any savings the club would make by cutting his salary would make little difference to what is going to happen.
    He should take the money while he can. I suspect others will be taking their money and running soon. He will need his savings ( and a tax rebate) then.

    • Very true Joe the closing of the door when everyone has gone is pointless, time for action was last year but i think the notion of business plans have escaped the govan area as was evident with the shambles of the IPO documents. All fur and no knickers…..just snickers for Sally.

    • Budweiser

      joseph.;- OT. 2 MILLION shares traded – somebody offloading !

    • JimBhoy

      Hey Joe, Chico pyro pants could have sat down with Sally and coaches and tried to mutually agree a more realistic contract but the fact is he did not, why? Because Sally was a sweetener to the fans and he received a million sweeteners on top of that… Chico then procedes to get a bunch of henchmen in with similar large sals and various ludicrous other incentives (some of which I am sure have not been visible YET) all for a short term investment of Chico’s time…This has been Chico’s MO from day 1, it will all come out with the washing..

      The rangers fans have made a few mistakes along the way in not questioning more, that is evident but they thought buying SBs en masse would be enough to see their club thru hard times… It clearly is not. Blind faith, yeah but for a football club they love and I kinda admire that in a way…

      I am one of the rangers haters of course but those taking the blue pound for winning the 4th division is down right robbery, the blame lies squarely with Chico, a man who will use anything and ANYONE to get his wedge (and some face time in the papers), a fantasist who has regurgitated old ideas for football money making to a desperate fan base.

      We shall soon see (I hope) who else has made cash off the wee success from last season, Did Wattie? Did Jabba? Did Malkie? Did the rest of the board members? The bonus thing I assume does have one positive (If I can make one assumption) that tax has been paid on it at source.. Too big an assumption..?

  8. Frankie

    Did he take a pay cut last year? I am reliably informed that none of the management team took a reduced salary during administration.

  9. Paul it will never come to that, he and the rangers do not want to disclose to the public that there is trouble with the finances. Despite the wild ravings of us rangers haters last year giving our personal thoughts on where they were going to spend the SB £ from last year which was almost exhausted before the rushed IPO and the subsequent funds from that going to repay the “initial investors” in full plus sizable bonuses and OE to keep the club running until this years SB sales kicked in, we were vilified as trolls idiots, ( remarkably cleaned up version). None of the blue noses that regularly featured then or now listened or wanted to listen. They still don’t want to listen even though everything we said at the time has been borne out to be accurate, not our imaginations.

    I agree that he should be on a more relevant income with respect to the fans and institutional investors. If I was personally either then I would be demanding that the pay structure was adhered to ( as stated by CG) but as usual its all BS.

    I don t really pay much attention to the situation there because what we have all said in the past is coming true, and truthfully hell mend them all. The only reason I take part now is for the comedy value it now presents because its gone past (thankfully) the embarassing stage, and of course the self righteous self complimenting that comes with being right……most of the time.

  10. Monti

    With McCoist’s record in cup competitions alone, being knocked out of them that is, I’d happily give him more money, for his salary & buying players.
    @David & Cam, the chuckle brothers….

  11. Pingback: Pay Cut for Ally McCoist? Does Rangers’ Boss Have Highest Basic Wage in Scottish Football? - Speymouth

  12. How could they make the manager redundant? Under law that position couldn’t be filled for a further two years.

    Mind you with a squad filled with such quality I’m sure an experienced first team coach, rather than a manager, could do well with it in Scotlands lower divisions.

    Forgetting about cup competitions, which aren’t Ally’s strongsuit anyway.

  13. Is it not an absolute disgrace, McCoist is on absolutely the same money for the third year, why is he not getting cost of living rises, how can he absolutely be expected to keep Greggs in business if he can’t earn enough.

    McCoist has absolutely saved Rangers an absolute fortune since he single handily saved them from dying absolutely, he absolutely sends out teams to get absolutely knocked out of cups as early as absolutely possible, he knows they are absolutely never going to be able to win trophies like the Ramsdens cup so Ally absolutely saves the club all those travelling and home game expenses,
    It’s an absolute wonder Sevco have not registered him as a charity,

  14. JimBhoy

    I think we would all commend McCoist for being in receipt of his huge remuneration package providing so little with so much and with most rangers fans suggesting he is a legend but not a manager to take the club forward..Why wouldn’t he hang on for his pay off if that’s how he is thought of after many years of excellent service to rangers (i make no discrimination between the speculated old and new rangers)..

    I wonder how much in bonuses winning the scottish 4th division actually cost rangers last season.. Must be a record breaking amount for sure, it would probably be a record off the radar.. 🙂

  15. joratim

    Think a major point being missed is this.

    A business which does not publish audited accounts can do whatevever they like. Who knows, some of the minor staff such as cleaners, etc. may not even being paid the minimum wage.

    In our small minded country anything can happen and in particular when those from the South West of the city are involved, as they know that the Shocking Scottish Media become mute when it comes to their having problems made public.

  16. Monti


  17. Monti

    ” They’ll never lock us out again & here’s the reason why, MY NAME IS JAMES CONNOLLY I DIDN’T COME HERE TO DIE” 🙂

  18. Monti

    I’m still waiting David 🙂

  19. Pingback: Why is Mr McCoist Taking a Pay Cut at Rangers When There is £10 Million in the Bank? | Random Thoughts Re Scots Law by Paul McConville

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s