SPFL Myopia Flares into Civil War

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The Covid 19 Pandemic is a truly serious game-changing situation for us all.
We are all currently staring into a future with no declared road map exit of
how we might move back to normality and the certainty of disruption now and
long into the future.

Against the background of lockdown to curb the virus spread we have all run smack bang into economic and social chaos.
We have gone from normality into unheard of times virtually overnight and with horrendous economic consequences coming every which way into the future.

Football is not important in the greater scheme of things but still has issues that need attention and urgently because it affects people’s lives.

 This Week’s SPFL Plan to Move On

The SPFL are simply the members association who run our leagues on a “for the members, by the members, for the members” kind of way in theory.

For reasons known to them they collectively took the decision to start to draw an end to season 2019 – 2020 with its Covid 19 uncertainty.
This was probably to allow them and all their members (our clubs) to at least
start to plan for the future when income streams will return.

From speaking to those involved from the club side and reading and hearing more at a truly astonishing pace since Wednesday 8th of April, just 3 day ago, the SPFL decided in their wisdom that the best solution was to conflate two particular issues. 

To back their case quite forcibly they also provided a dossier of over 100 pages of supportive material.  All good bedtime reading for our club’s boards I have been told, but i haven’t seen it.

The issues the SPFL decided to conflate were to ‘pro-rata’ all games played so far this season so they could equalise and close the Championship and Leagues 1 and 2, with the Premiership going the same way if it became clear that fixtures could not be completed.

If and only if the motion was agreed by the members then the end of season prize money would be forthcoming from the SPFL bank almost immediately.

Money desperately needed by some members. A real lifeline in troubled times.

There was also another possible wee carrot dangled.

This might have been of a sort of half-hearted agreement to look at re-organisation of Scottish Football. This because despite the dossier urging clubs to vote yes, the SPFL knew some clubs would not be happy with their proposals and would not agree.

 In the Real World of Challenged and Stressed Football Clubs

 The SPFL conflation of “do this or no money” meant things like.

The title would be handed to Celtic eventually if Premier Clubs then followed suit, despite Rangers having a mathematical, albeit statistically unlikely, chance of catching their rivals.

Hearts would be relegated despite having enough games to catch their nearest rivals and stay safe possibly by a play off (if they hadn’t already been cancelled).

Partick Thistle would be relegated because they failed to play one league game while playing another SPFL competition and also had a bunch of games left to save themselves.

Stranraer would go down despite being proven late season successful relegation fighters.

Brora (declared Highland Champions) and Kelty (current leaders in Lowland League, by a bawhair over Bonnyrigg) would have no play off with a likely game against Brechin or whoever was going to be bottom of the SPFL2 league.

And these are just the tip of what football chiefs I’ve spoken with have termed an ill-considered iceberg of matters arising from a hapless attempt to bring some certainty to the SPFL membership. 

72 Hours of Mayhem as Peter was Played Against Paul

People are interconnected today and from the moment clubs were pushed into a corner they discussed it together and in depth.
They all know who voted how why and when and have WhatsApp records too.

They all feel they could have done it better. I can’t try to sum up the sheer enormity and quantity of what has happened since Wednesday night but after I had penned a piece for SFM on Friday with suggestions that there was a civil war brewing that is just indeed what happened.

Every club effectively had a moral and economic choice and sometimes they were conflicting.

Friday was too close to call

I was in a few communication loops sitting at home on Friday afternoon as the vote unfolded.

I had been warned how close it was going to be and it was fascinating with first Inverness seen as the potentially key vote then an acceptance just before 5 that the whole thing had failed.
Then, 5.30ish, a different and quite hopeful view came out that after the vote had been seen to have failed that a 14, 14, 14, compromised was likely. Sense seemed to be prevailing. Then later and very late in the day a view that 1 vote (Dundee) had still to come and was in effect now the casting vote with all the power that casting votes carry.

Since then we have first seen Dundee castigated in the press and by unthinking media pundits as the villains for holding everything up.

(But that’s now old news).

Today (Sat 11th April), ICT Chief Executive Scott Gardiner was on BBC Sportsound alongside Richard Gordon, Michael Stewart Tom English, Kenny Miller and later on Willie Miller. It wasn’t a normal filler show in a period with no football.

It was truly amazing with some hard facts and honest insights. Uncommonly so. 
I should have been forewarned after one well know football finance insider had tweeted last night (Fri) ahead of the curve that “Dundee will have earned some concession and will now change their vote” or words to that effect.

Wow he was ahead of the tsunami that burst this afternoon. If you haven’t heard BBC Sportsound at 2 pm today then the first hour or so is unmissable.

Since then matters have gone on apace we have now heard that Douglas Park, interim Chairman of Rangers, wants the SPFL CEO Neil Doncaster and legal counsel Rod Mackenzie (Rangers links) to stand down ahead of an independent inquiry.

So less than a day after a yet to be agreed vote outcome and genuine internecine war is brewing and exploding with Mr Parks claiming he has damning information from a whistleblower.

In turn he has been asked by the current SPFL Chairman Murdoch MacLennan to substantiate his “very serious accusations”. .

So Who Scored the Own Goal and What Can We Do About It?

As of now I actually don’t care who did what and when.
Stuff has happened and in the fullness of time we can look at how it happened and what we can do to avoid it into the future.
Today we need to move forward and that needs leadership.

Here is a 5 point roadmap.

Ditch this divisive plan
It doesn’t matter how Dundee vote just consign all this crap to history.
Pay all the monies due
This week no strings and if that needs a vote then vote on that and that alone.
Agree what happens and how to end the season
Scottish Football Supporters Association say this must include no relegation and pyramid winners should be included. Don’t penalise anyone at this time.
And an interim plan would be fine of three leagues like nearly got agreed for 20 minutes on Friday.
Take time
End the season properly and fairly and plan for the future to reinvigorate our game for the greater good. The world has changed but we haven’t.
Involve all stakeholders especially the fans 
This should all be on the record and transparent. 

The Time To Stop The War is Now 

851 COMMENTS

  1. Bogs Dollox 25th April 2020 at 15:58

    '..Tom English did say that man [i.e. the semi-literate Member of Parliament]should never have been invited onto the show …..'

    """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""

     Unusually very brave of him to criticise whichever high heid yin in Pacific Quay who whistled up the semi-literate guest? Will he be publicly punished, like others before him – Spence, Stewart…?

     

  2. You would think that Clare Whyte would be front and centre , taking the heat off her employers by releasing her decisions on some of the stuff  she has been deliberating over . Fit and proper ? European licence ? ( list not exhaustive ) . No football to distract her . 

  3. Orange strips , photo shoots with flute bands in Belfast , employing a DUP councillor for PR who has no PR experience , an outlawed song book that a deaf ear is routinely turned to ( at least in Scotland) and now DUP MPs publicly fighting their corner . This club* is an open top bus for bigotry and their Board have resorted to scraping the bottom of the barrel . Only kkknukkkle draggers will be roused by these tactics and our society as well as our national sport will be damaged by it. Anyone/ Everyone ? The "Old Firm" derby became infamous on a global scale due to the hatred stoked up by religious differences not the quality of its football . It seems that one side is intent in stoking those fires in a desperate attempt to make itself relevant . I know in the current situation Social Distancing is important , 2 metres is adequate . We do not need to be driven 330 years apart . 

  4. Cluster One 25th April 2020 at 20:51

    Ah , the heady days of Dave King undermining , no , saving the club .I wonder what happened to that cheeky chappy ? Hope it all turned out well .

  5. I sincerely hope that the inclusion of a Westminster MP on Sportsound has repercussions for whoever thought it was a good idea. I’m sure had the local MSP not been a little bit busy dealing with matters of life and death then I’m sure he would have pointed out that a DUP MP has no locus in Glasgow. My complaint has been lodged with the BBC.

  6. Well at least Mr Campbell’s contribution to today’s Sportsound was edited out of the podcast. A small victory.

  7. Ex Ludo 25th April 2020 at 22:56

    ".Well at least Mr Campbell’s contribution to today’s Sportsound was edited out of the podcast. A small victory.V

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    Or, perhaps, evidence of the readiness of BBC Scotland to hide their readiness to lie?

  8. Interesting point Homunculus. I’m not sure they could instruct the leagues on how to finish, but could certainly advise them. This should have been done a month ago. We’re now in the crazy situation that not only are different countries taking different approaches, but leagues within countries are taking a different approach! Finishing the seasons, at least in the UK, Spain and Italy is just not happening – especially as death rates are still close to 1000 per day. Football is a very insignificant thing on the grand scale of things and the thought of starting even behind closed doors is irresponsible. How many people would that be when you include all the coaches etc? How many for TV crews? What happens if a player is injured and has to go to hospital? Every league has to be declared over now for this season, in my opinion with immediate effect. It’s then I believe that UEFA should make the recommendations on how to settle the leagues. Either there are winners, promotion and relegation, or there aren’t. But if every league has the same approach there can be no arguing. The carry on at the moment from a number of clubs, not least my own, seems completely undignified in the grand scheme of things and could all have been avoided if UEFA had said a month ago how leagues should conclude. 

  9. Darkbeforedawn26th April 2020 at 00:20

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    …………

    I'm afraid you have completely misunderstood UEFA's place in the operation of national leagues.

    They have none.

    UEFA has no place, authority or standing to order, advise or even suggest how its members' leagues should be run.

    Its only input is to provide advice on how the completion of those leagues may affect qualification to its own competitions next season on the grounds of 'sporting merit'.

    Its motivation, for even this limited level of involvement, is the sheer panic over the likelihood that it will lose significant revenue if/when this season's competitions are curtailed.

    It needs time to develop its own strategy; but, doesn't wish to be seen as the only body pretending that this season can be completed before the next is due to begin.

    But, to repeat, UEFA has no standing in the operation of national leagues.

     

  10. Ex Ludo 25th April 2020 at 22:34

    ………..
    I have not listened to the interview.
    Was the politician from Ireland in the studio? and if he was why?
    We are told to stay at home, and only to go out for essentials.
    What mindset thought it a good idea to have DUP MP Gregory Campbell travel to a studio?
    If the interview was done in his own home over the phone, that will be about the only thing the BBC got right, if there is any right in this fiasco.

  11. Could it be another exclusive for BBC Sportsound? Rumours are that Rangers have found an honest broker to share their evidence with. Is Gregory Campbell back on today to confirm he has seen the evidence? 

  12. shug 25th April 2020 at 22:03

    Thanks for sharing that, Shug. A very well written and heartfelt letter, regardless of the football content. The gentleman who wrote that should be on TV/radio/MSM giving a similar message to all those more concerned with when the lockdown will end than looking to make the country safe before risking an escalation of the virus, for we can be sure that whatever careful first steps are taken, there will be far too many people using the relaxation of the rules as an excuse to party and meet up, just because they can. We will all be in the most danger once the lockdown ends, unless the near impossible happens and the virus is gone.

    Stay safe everyone.

  13. Elgin City: Chairman Graham Tatters says reconstruction should not be SPFL priority

    Elgin City "will be finished in three months" if the UK government's furlough scheme is not extended beyond June, says chairman Graham Tatters.

    And he believes SPFL reconstruction should be shelved because the priority has to be keeping clubs in business amid the coronavirus crisis.

    Scottish football has been suspended indefinitely since 13 March.

    "I can't get it across forcibly enough that some clubs won't survive this," Tatters said.

    "We've got to start thinking as a unit instead of bun-fighting all the time. That's why I can't understand why we're going through this reconstruction."

    The Scottish League Two club have placed all players and staff, bar one employee, on the job retention scheme, which pays 80% of wages up to £2,500 per month.

    But Tatters says Elgin's contract commitments for next season means they won't survive without further help should the shutdown continue.

    "We were in the play-off spots with a really good squad, we were the form team, and we signed nine of that current squad. So after June we have nine players signed," he told BBC Sportsound.

    "If the furlough stops, we're finished in about three months' time. Nobody is giving us any guidance on contracts or what will happen with the players. There is so much more for us to worry about than reconstruction."

    A 15-person reconstruction group, co-chaired by Hearts owner Ann Budge and Hamilton Academical vice-chair Les Gray, was set up by the SPFL in the wake of the resolution being passed to cut short the lower-league campaign.

    And while Tatters believes reshuffling the leagues is unnecessary amid the current crisis, he revealed the 10 League Two clubs have come to a consensus to back a 14-14-14 structure.

    'It's as though the lower leagues don't exist'

    Iain McMenemy, chairman of rival bottom-tier club Stenhousemuir, is in favour of reconstruction, but argues it needs to offer more than a short-term fix.

    "I referred to it as a sham because before the vote we were told there were no pre-conditions on reconstruction," McMenemy said. "And then the vote goes through and Ann Budge and [Aberdeen chairman] Dave Cormack say in the media actually it is just temporary, not long term. Well, that is a pre-condition we weren't aware of.

    "I believe reconstruction should be about righting the wrongs that happened this season, because it's incredibly unfair to get relegated through a boardroom decision. But the game does need permanent reconstruction. It needs fresh thinking.

    "I get very frustrated because I hear what the likes of Budge, Cormack and Gray have said and it's all centred around reconstruction in the Premiership. It's as though the lower leagues don't exist.

    "If they don't start to take us seriously, there is a collective of 10 votes sitting there who want to be listened to, otherwise nothing is going to go through."

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/52427942

    Scottish Football needs to ensure we have strong clubs for the future.

  14. HirsutePursuit 26th April 2020 at 01:50

    =================

    I am puzzled at why FIFA are not getting involved. As far as I am aware they DO have some jurisdiction over every member association. Perhaps the varied television deals the world over would make it too complicated though. 

  15. bordersdon 25th April 2020 at 12:10

     

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    Timtim @11.44

    ST's are held in escrow and released as games are played 

    ———————————————————

    Really? Is this mandatory or up to the club? If the latter I don't see TRFC going down that route. If the former then they will have cash relating to 3 or 4 games (about 20% of ST sales) sitting in this account?

    I can understand that for revenue recognition purposes the income would be released as the games were played, but the cash?

    This is a myth that grew up from a misreading of accounts. As Bordersdon says, season ticket money is recognised in the accounts on a game by game basis, but the clubs gets the money at the time (and often spend it all during the summer)

  16. scottc 26th April 2020 at 11:38

    I think, though I may be wrong, that some of the confusion may be caused from the time it was reported/revealed that TRFC's ST credit arrangement provider was only releasing funds to the club on a game to game basis – because they wanted to protect themselves and/or their customers (the ST purchasers who'd used their credit facility). So it may be a problem unique to TRFC.

    If that was, and still is, the case, then TRFC might not be getting the funds from the last 4 games of the season that would otherwise be due from STs purchased on credit. I think that was also mooted as one of the causes of their desperation to play the Livingston match.

  17. Shug

    Thank you for sharing the contents of the very letter above.

    I have known since I was a young boy, growing up in a community where the majority of my friends supported a different team from me, that there are some people whose football allegiance meant that they thought differently from me, but they were still good friends. 

    An incident from 1971 when 1 person refused to contribute to a collection, instigated by my father and friends, following the Ibrox disaster. The comments made are not repeatable but it was the first time I heard my father swear and was a life lesson for me! This man may have supported the team my father and I did but I have no problem in saying that he lacked basic humanity! 

    Football allegiance is strong but anyone who has given your post a thumbs-down really needs to re-read it!

     

     

     

     

  18. There has been a lot of chat in recent weeks from clubs and the SMSM about league reconstruction,

    yet not a peep about Scottish football governance reconstruction.

    I would guess that >95% of football fans have zero confidence in both the SPFL and SFA.

    During this crisis we have all witnessed the SPFL totally mismanage a vote, combined with weeks of confusion and mistrust.  The SPFL SOP.

    At the same time the SFA has hidden away in the Hampden bunker, as per.

    A distinct lack of leadership from both organisations – again.

    Governance reconstruction should come before any league reconstruction, IMO.

    I know… smiley

  19. Having been fortunate enough to listen to all of yesterday afternoon's sports coverage there were a couple of soundbites that stood out (ignoring the view from Northern Ireland's finest).  To be fair, and to set context, they were completely unrelated (in fact completely different shows).

    On the general football programme the point, said more than once by several contributors – centred on the lack of trust, lack of awareness and frankly lack of ability within the authorities and how that was a major stumbling block to moving forwards.

    Then separately (earlier to maintain accuracy), on Tam and Stuart's show Hibs Chief Executive Leanne Dempster was on espousing that one of the absolute drivers of a club's attendance, financial performance and thus underlying strength was "success on the park."  Its funny but I vividly remember a time when that was both openly admitted by a dishonest perpetrator and yet simultaneously and vehemently denied by those in power yet I don't remember many objections at that time.

    They are reaping what they sowed.  Hell mend them. 

     

  20. A Sunday Statement

    These really are unprecedented times.

    https://rangers.co.uk/news/headlines/independent-investigation

    Sunday, 26 April 2020, 17:00

    by Rangers Football Club

    THERE are key issues to be discussed and agreed within Scottish football including the circumstances and dates on which football can resume, the health and safety of all involved and the financial implications for members.

    It is vital that those involved in making those decisions have the confidence and support of member clubs. An independent investigation provides a route to achieving this.

    It has always been Rangers’ intention to produce our evidence at the appropriate time. The evidence will be provided to all member clubs well in advance of a general meeting to approve an independent investigation.

  21. Still nae interims though. Should that be investigated? Forensically?

    Scottish Football needs a strong Arbroath.

  22. Homunculus 26th April 2020 at 17:13

    "… in advance of a general meeting to approve an independent investigation."

    =======

    That's a wee bit presumptuous / arrogant of the Ibrox club!

    Yet another pointless, unprofessional and weak statement.

    Like an unruly wean making a loud noise randomly – just to get some attention.

  23.    So still no disclosure of evidence……Must be good stuff. 

    Next weeks Euro-millions numbers?…..The answers to Who wants to be a millionaire?….Dunno, but it's still a secret until they get their way…..

        Maybe its the secret to the gift that keeps giving? mail

  24. Homunculus 26th April 2020 at 17:13

    =========

    Their statements are becoming like Facebook posts. Next thing they'll they'll be posting a photo of what they had for Sunday dinner.

    Firstly they were not releasing evidence until Doncaster and McKenzie had been suspended. Then they said they would release it once an independent investigation was in place. Now they say they will release it in advance of an EGM which is not even granted yet. What's it to be? 

    Personally I think if the evidence they have is so damning the entire business would have been conducted via the media. I could of course be wrong. We'll see. 

     

     

     

  25. StevieBC 26th April 2020 at 17:32

    '…That's a wee bit presumptuous / arrogant of the Ibrox club!.

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    Certainly is: but it's also an indication of the inability of the PR chap to use the English language to convey meaning.

    It might well  have come from the tainted pen of  the MP for East Londonderry: whose contribution to the Sportsound debate  was cut from the BBC Radio Scotland podcast because of time restraints (or so we learn from the DR today, courtesy of Liam Bryce:

    https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/bbc-explain-rangers-fan-mp-21929681

    "The BBC have said DUP MP Gregory Campbell was cut from Saturday's Sportsound podcast due to time constraints.

    The controversial politician, also a Rangers fan, appeared on the live show to discuss tabling a motion for an independent probe into the SPFL voting fiasco in the House of Commons.

    A number of fans reacted angrily to Campbell's appearance and the interview was removed from the listen again version.")

    They are all over the place, TRFC and BBC Radio Scotland.

  26. I can't help thinking we're going to be awfully disappointed when this 'explosive' evidence comes to light!   Such a build up.   indecision

  27. jimbo 26th April 2020 at 19:15

    ‘..awfully disappointed when this ‘explosive’ evidence comes to light!   ‘

    “””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””

    Well, Jimbo, if there’s nothing of substance enough to pressure 32 folk into accepting that an independent [does that word really have any meaning in things to do with the SPFL?] investigation is required then the huffing and puffing by TRFC will just make them even more ridiculous  if such a thing is possible.

    As against that, if there is enough substance to require an investigation, but related only to relatively minor matters, then that will be deservedly one in the eye for the SPFL for making an unnecessary pig’s ear of things.

    The third possibility – that there might have been real skullduggery, we could be in for a lovely tit-for-tat as a club living a lie challenges those who set up the lie and with whom they are now displeased!

    A wee bit of mutual self-destruction might result in a cleaner and more honest football league and football governance.

  28. JC,  Sounds like it could be a win win situation?   To be honest I would love to see any of the suits at Hampden get their comeuppance.   I just have my doubts about anything that comes out of Ibrox.

  29. The thumbscrews are clearly being put on the Santa Fe Public Library , but why ?

    Is it now time for clubs to be passed for Euro participation for next season ? handing over the interim accts for inspection I believe is a requirement . Painting themselves as the victim of a discriminatory governing body may help when it comes to pressurising same for re-admission into Senior football should a 2nd reincarnation be necessary . If they were to be passed for euro football and subsequently went bust then the authorities are left with egg on their blazers and a real investigation may take place so I imagine they are extremely wary of doing so. Without the Euro licence and associated funds then the goose is cooked, however to appease them a swift return to the top division with no penalties may be the bargaining chip. Remember the rules changed after the 2012 debacle when clubs applied sporting integrity . There will be no such impediment this time around. The more things change the more the stay the same .

  30. Timtim 26th April 2020 at 20:26

    The main difference this time is that there is only one league. Previously the SPL and SFL were separate. So whilst it was nonsense it a made some sort of logic to apply for the SPL and when that failed the SFL.

    Now there is one league, the SPFL and if anyone applies to join it the only sensible place is in the bottom division of that league.

    Also, why would the 41 clubs vote for anything other than that.

  31. At this time of crisis, it does put things in perspective.

    So, in this vein… why don't the other 41 clubs vote to do the humane thing… and award the Scottish Cup to TRFC?

    Yes, they did get legitimately punted out of the cup by Hearts,

    but if the competition is not going to be completed this year, then giving the cup to The Rangers might stop them greeetin' ?

    Like an award for 'participation'. indecision

    But, they'll be so pleased to 'win' some silverware they'll be celebrating it like a 'Big Cup' win… with an open top bus parade and everything!

    Any talk of investigations or spurious allegations will be swiftly forgotten.

    We could all help put a smile on the faces of those who need a bit of extra help in these challenging times.  It's the least we can do…

    enlightened

  32. @Homunculus

    It's my understanding (I may have misunderstood) that the decision would be taken by the Board of the SPFL and not by the individual clubs. 

  33. Timtim 26th April 2020 at 20:26

    '…should a 2nd reincarnation be necessary..'

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    Timtim: there was no 'first reincarnation'. RFC of 2182 wasn't brought back to life. It is still there in the graveyard of Liquidation, alongside every other Scottish football club that ceased to exist for any other reason.

    TRFC is an eight- year- old club, born in 2012 and is in no sense to be understood as having had any previous existence. 

    (I know you know that;  and we have to acknowledge that CG was, as men of his type are wont to be, as creatively clever as the types who write misleading share prospectuses. However, we need to keep emphasising that TRFC were not ever and are not now RFC of 1872, and sit like a perpetual burr under the saddle of the TRFC horse) until the lie is stripped away or until they fold into Liquidation , whichever comes first)broken heart

     

  34. Must say I am enjoying them old games on BBC Scotland.The best being the Dundee Derby how many familiar young players going on to good careers.Tonight the Jackie McNamara show.Even not to bad Referring lol that will come back to haunt me.

  35. Could this whole Rangers* diatribe against the SPFL be a warning shot to the SPFL & SFA to set aside normal rules** when considering anything upcoming to do with Rangers* e.g. ignore the interims as of course COVID-19 has destroyed almost all clubs financial positions, especially as they were poised to bring in mega-zillions from overseas RRM?

    Scottish Football needs a strong Arbroath.

    **As if they ever applied anyway….

  36. Oh forgot to say the after match interview on the Dundee Derby with Jim Duffy he stated that the playing surface was ideal or perfect , in that case Jim why did you look like Bambie in ice .

  37. Timtim 26th April 2020 at 21:48

    The SPFL is basically just a continuation of the SPL (SC175364)

    If they couldn't just force Sevco in the last time I don't see why they would be able to this time. 

  38. In fact, correct me if I am wrong but when Rangers went into liquidation they were replaced by “Club 12” in the SPL. Dundee were then selected as being “Club 12”.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/18850864

    SPL chief executive Neil Doncaster said the decision had been taken “purely on sporting integrity” and that Dundee were the “overwhelming” choice of the other clubs.

    Dundee, who were runners-up in Division One and finished 24 points behind champions Ross County, will accept the invitation to play in the SPL.

    Dens Park chief executive Scot Gardiner said: “We were always confident that, on sporting merit, it would be us, but we have been in limbo for a few weeks and, only now, can we start to plan properly for the SPL.

    “We have a very good squad of players and can now add to that squad.”

    =====================================

    Now there’s a conspiracy theory if anyone wants to start one.

  39. Imo , the whistleblower "evidence" is just a device to further polarise Scottish football . It will probably contain some true but trivial infractions that one club deem to be important . Once presented , them as support our stance are brothers , them as decline to are haters . It was ever thus. And I can't accept that  a large group of financially distressed companies would vote to spend a very large sum  of money solely to appease a fanbase that behaves like a horde of delinquent teenagers .

  40. Redlichtie ' 22.13

    I certainly find the latest SEVCO deflective 'statement' farcical,  bizarre and desperate.

    Do they fear that they won't secure a general meeting (I think they will), and are offering this promise to release their 'evidence' well in advance of said meeting 'pour encourager les autres'? In the name o the wee man – why not now??

    Is this outfit really asking clubs to trust them – on anything??

    They remind me of the guy who paints the wooden floors of his bedroom from the door inwards and ends up cornered by the window – and with the wet paint in front of him.

    I am equally confident that there will be no further independent investigation (they won't get required 75%) – which will lead us to their next statement that Celtic cannot be crowned Champions after the SPFL declare them to be.

    For that reason, I am desperate for season to be completed – although I accept it won't – to remove any sniping about CFC winning 91AR – on merit and within sporting integrity (a concept beyond their ken down Govan way)

  41.      Memorial Walls, an English based company had a four day hearing scheduled v Sevco, beginning 24th March…. Guilt has been admitted.    In the current climate, it would be remiss of them not to take steps to protect themselves to the tune of the damages claimed. With fitba' gates closed, for some clubs the only forseeable income stream is the end of season positions payment. It would be natural to plan on that as a trigger point for a ring-fencing application, as doing so when they were skint would be a waste of time. (Did I mention that Sevco can't afford to pay their players at the moment?) 

             A wise legal firm would already have informed Sevco thus. The claim is for £1.3m….2nd spot pay-out is for £2.4m – VAT.

        Close Finance….A company where business is business, need no such security protection for their loan. They can sleep safely in the knowledge of having a great big padlock, to which they hold the only key. The legal term for that being a Floating Charge……It's funny how one wee trigger point can have a knock-on effect. 

        A premature end to the season would not be a good thing for Sevco…

    Neither Memorial Walls nor Close Finance would give a flying fig-tree if they were blamed.

           I've got the evidence. A great big dossier…….I'll show you it all after they go bust with nobody to blame but themselves..

        Actually I'm only kidding. I don't have that kind of evidence. I'm just mentioning a few known knowns………At least I'm honest about it.      

          

  42. It’s a waiting game right enough as Vladimir (Ukrainian RB) and Estragon (Spanish midfield maestro) sit waiting under a tree in Bellahouston Park to see the evidence which will never arrive.

  43. Aside from the constant contradictory statements. does anyone have any idea what Rangers are getting so upset about? Do they believe the SPFL conspired to come to a decision simply to disadvantage them? Do they believe the SPFL conspired to come to a decision simply to give Celtic an advantage? Do they believe it is possible to play out the season and the SPFL refuse to do so, simply because that might mean Celtic will collapse and Rangers will win the league, which the SPFL wouldn’t want to happen. Or, from day one has their only aim been to ensure Celtic can’t be awarded the title, and they are lashing out everywhere? 

    I know which is most likely.

  44. Decent article from Keith Jackson in the DR this morning believe it or not.  Hopefully it is typical of the thinking throughout Scottish Football on the machinations from Ibrox.  Apart from Ann Budge of course (I will refrain from using 'Hearts' as I hope she is not typical of their thinking) and Stranraer.

    It was also good to see he avoided dragging Celtic into this bun fight.

  45. From DR today;

     

    "OPINION The two Rangers endgames hinging on what's inside the secret dossier – Keith Jackson

    In fact, they (Rangers) will be owed a great debt of gratitude from all of us who care passionately about our football if it is proven that the game in this country is indeed bent…"

    =======

    Ooofftt!

    Reading that quote, I feel a bit confused – like Patrick Duffy must have felt when he exited the shower in that 'Dallas' TV soap all those years ago…

    the blatant corruption at Hampden in 2012 was just a dream!

    (Or mibbees Keef was sleepwalking throughout that particularly shameful period in Scottish football governance?)

     

    As for "what's inside the secret dossier" at Ibrox?

    I'll have a wild guess;

    – an IOU from Dave King for personal expenses charged to his corporate card,

    – some low value, Dirham bank notes left over from their winter training camp in Dubai,

    – and a Curly Wurly wrapper.

    Or mibbees the "dossier" is just a big, empty envelope…?  indecision

  46. Just reading elsewhere on the web that Rangers are planning to move to English football.  All sorted then, and like every good fairytale 'they all lived happily ever after.'

  47. Yesterday  I was up in the attic, looking at the ballcock in the cold-water tank ( the external overflow pipe was dripping water onto my garden bench thingy). It was fraction too low in the water, so a washer must need replacing. 

    Astonishingly, though, I noticed that there was a slimy wee beast of a snail inside the tank, just above the water level! I speared it out with a screwdriver, put it in a plastic bag, stood on it, and took it down to the bin. 

    A few minutes ago I read Keef's bit of pseudo-journalism.

    And was immediately into reflecting on the relative worth of a human being like Keef and the harmless wee snail in my water tank. 

    I have a clear idea which is of lesser worth in my estimation, and it is not the snail.

    Honest to God! Keef as a crusader for what is right is something that does not compute!

     

  48. upthehoops 27th April 2020 at 09:50

    Just reading elsewhere on the web that Rangers are planning to move to English football.  All sorted then, and like every good fairytale 'they all lived happily ever after.'

    =============================================

    One of those situations perhaps where you give the most glowing of references in response to an enquiry about a current employee in the hope that the poor sucker company will take the annoying and parasitical person off your hands. Which I would never ever do. Oh no…

    Scottish Football needs a strong Arbroath.

  49. ‘upthehoops 27th April 2020 at 06:49

    Aside from the constant contradictory statements. does anyone have any idea what Rangers are getting so upset about?…’

    ##################

    I don’t think that RIFC/TRFC (whichever entity is driving this scheme) is any more upset than is the norm for that organisation. What’s different at the moment is how that ‘upset’ is being managed, particularly without the input (Steadying hand? Ah-ha!) of DCK & Traynor. 

    I think RIFC/TRFC’s actions are driven, like many bullies, by fear; fear of being seen as ordinary, fear of their perceived WATP lead-dog position being replaced by being one of the pack, fear of losing ‘credibility’ with their foot-soldiers (and hence the ‘Ulsterisation’ that’s occurring to ‘spice up’ their following), fear of skeletons tumbling out of closets &, perhaps above all, fear of being skint to the extent that they seemingly are.  

    I suspect that things are very-much on the knife-edge at Ibrox. World events have diminished the perceived/inflated values of Morelos/Barisic/Tavernier/Kamara/Goldson et al. Those same world events have chased away the blessing of unicorns, all with £10m bank drafts impaled on their horns, which were almost ready to be corralled for ‘fresh investment’. Debts are due to be serviced, but the cupboard’s bare.

    They’re in the sh!t up to their oxters & they know it. They think their best way out is to splash about & spread the contaminant over anyone close by. It really isn’t & D. Park & co. should know that, but their mindset sees that as their only option.

  50. upthehoops 27th April 2020 at 06:49 

          Aside from the constant contradictory statements. does anyone have any idea what Rangers are getting so upset about?

    ==========================================

       Celtic doing 9 IAR is something they seemed to have resigned themselves to a few games after the return from Dubai. If anything this virus has provided a useful deflection from on field failings. 

        When the Big Liar legged it, The statements were curt, but not overly panicky. Only the news that the leagues were to be called caused the full Corporal Jones.  Initial statements were in full headless chicken mode. Gradually these have become more muted as they have formulated something on the hoof to events.

          Every club in Scotland has had whatever they did have planned completely thrown into disarray. Whatever Sevco had planned, or projected did not involve £2.4m arriving in the coffers too soon. (And this club is a club where every penny should be a prisoner). 

        They need delays to that, (for whatever reason), and now, slightly more composed, have laid out a delaying formula, and the necessary time frames required or EGM's offers them the best opportunity.  They do want the 2nd spot money, indeed, will have budgeted for it's arrival. …..They just do not want it at the moment. For whatever reason, (and there are a host to choose from), they don't have the ducks in a row yet. 

        My feeling is a premature league ending seriously messed with their planned schedule. A voluntary administration event.  

         I think they are upset about nothing, other than the timing of cash deposits.

  51. Corrupt Official @ 12.08

    I agree that might just be the crux of the matter . I read someone on here a while ago ( it may have been your good self ? ) That they may have been banking on that money on the other side of an administration event . Nothing else seems to make sense. They MUST realise that Celtic being crowned champs is enevitable , the SPFL will just go along with the herd  ( EPL and a lot of  other leagues throuout Europe ), they probably dont have much option or they would look stupid ( or should I say stupider ! ) . Rangers  Jumping on board with Hearts is fooling nobody , I stand by what I said in an earlier post . Rangers MkII would not think twice about bringing scottish football down with them if  they could . " Its ma baw n your no playing with it " Mentality of ra peepul .  I have no time for Anne Budge but I do feel sorry for Hearts as they could have realistically MAYBE scraped a play off and possible survival. But Anne you need to look at the terrible football decisions you have made. I was in favour of no relegation and a 14 team league but after reading more stuff from different blogs it would be a bit daft to do it now, wait and see how many teams we have by the time this is over, Hearts may yet get a reprieve.  Listening to wee Nicola , football aint gonna be back anytime soon. The Scottish government will do football no favours , they seem to hate football and its fans.  Incidentley what is the cut off date for an administration event  for points to be deducted this season ?

  52. I think what is more upsetting is they are rapidly losing the battle to stay solvent and all that investment and all those shares are on the verge of becoming worthless. As debts continue to pile up ,players contracts continue to run down and the need for a scapegoat is becoming increasingly desperate . Their level of debt used to be measurable in the faux offers for Morelos , it can now be measured in packets of Crayola used by the PR dept. Even the MSM are finding it difficult to promote the latest tantrum without a sidenote questioning its credibility. Ashley has them by the throat , Close Brothers have pinned both arms behind their back and what Memorial Walls have them by is best left unsaid on a family forum. As we know that is just the tip of the iceberg but as in the case of a big liner that also had strong Belfast connections it was what was unseen that dealt a fatal blow.

  53. roddybhoy 27th April 2020 at 13:14

    I have no time for Anne Budge but I do feel sorry for Hearts as they could have realistically MAYBE scraped a play off and possible survival. But Anne you need to look at the terrible football decisions you have made.

    ==================================

        Ditto. I have maybe sounded condescending towards Hearts in some posts, but that was not how I intended them to be. I like the Jambos and it is one of my favourite stadiums. You have summed up better than I have.  

  54. roddybhoy 27th April 2020 at 13:14

    '..Incidentley what is the cut off date for an administration event  for points to be deducted this season ?'

    """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""

    Ha ha,roddybhoy, first determine when the 'season' ends!

    The stark situation TRFC find themselves in seems to me to be this:

    having to make a choice between going now for a Voluntary Administration and taking the 15- point hit now, thus 'handing' the League title to Celtic, but possibly saving the club from going bust [ screwing their creditors to some extent, but staying alive] . If there is a next season, they would have another 5 point deduction, but they could theoretically overcome that.

    OR

    Holding  out for completion of the remaining games in the hope of winning the title, and thus qualifying for CL  (if there is a next season)  The risk is that they might go bust if a Vol Admin does not succeed and liquidators are called in ( and there's no guarantee that a Vol Admin will be successful.They would then not be able to stay in competition in this present season's EL.

    They are between a rock and a very hard place indeed, and their days of living a lie might well be over, with bugger all to do with the effects of Covid-19.

     

     

     

  55. John

    "Haha Roddybhoy , first determine when season ends !  lol Valid point John lolol

    They really are as you say between a rock and a hard place …….That karma's a bitch mail

     

  56. roddybhoy 27th April 2020 at 14:35

    John

    "Haha Roddybhoy , first determine when season ends !  lol Valid point John lolol

    They really are as you say between a rock and a hard place …….That karma's a bitch 

    =================================================

    Karmageddon! 🙂

    Scottish Football needs a strong Arbroath.

  57. tony27th April 2020 at 13:19

    Imagine them trying their nonsense with the English FA 

    ———

    I have oftened wondered how the English FA would have reacted if much of e.g Man Utd's modern success was founded on illegal tax evasion. I doubt if they would have fallen over themselves to make up rules to excuse it. I doubt the English media would tolerate it if they tried in any case. 

     

     

  58. John Clark 27th April 2020 at 14:08

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    I'm not convinced entering and exiting Admin is actually possible for this iteration of a club/company playing at Ibrox for various reasons.

    One, have they actually got the money to pay an Administrator

    Two, Close Bros have charges over significant assets and they would be taken by them rather than vote for any pennies in the pound deal.

    Three, Sports Direct, Memorial Walls would be significant creditors and would probably not vote for a CVA.

    Four, the footballing debts are around £25m. The SFA would expect these to be paid not dumped in a CVA or liquidation. Therefore, a Third Rangers entering the SPFL would be extremely difficult for anyone to finance. A new investor would be paying off the debts of the current TRFC, that would be difficult to swallow. It was a bugbare of Greens and the amounts involved then were miniscule by comparison.

    I'm afraid it's goodbye for good this time.

     

  59. Homunculus 26th April 2020 at 21:30
    …………..
    Timtim 26th April 2020 at 21:48

    @Homunculus

    It’s my understanding (I may have misunderstood) that the decision would be taken by the Board of the SPFL and not by the individual clubs.
    …………………
    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/scottish-football/10631856/Scottish-football-abandons-plans-to-automatically-relegate-clubs-in-administration.html
    …………..
    It has also been agreed that, in future, the SPFL Board will have the sole responsibility for adjudication regarding clubs who might face liquidation.

    “It will be down to the board to determine any conditions for a transfer of membership if a club is liquidated and attempts to go down the newco route,” said the source.
    ……………
    I am a bit late, i hope this will help, i am just trying to catch up.

  60. Bogs Dollox@16.46

    “I'm afraid it's goodbye for good this time”

    Hence the entirely false furore emanating from Ibrox. Support elicited from a DUP MP and filtered through a PR officer recruited from the ranks of the LOL surely represent the last throw of the dice.

     

     

  61. Bogs Dollox 27th April 2020 at 16:46

    ‘..I’m not convinced entering and exiting Admin is actually possible for this iteration…..

    I’m afraid it’s goodbye for good this time.”

    “””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””

    I wonder, BD, has it ever happened that a football club went into Administration,

    -and the firm of Insolvency Practitioners appointed to handle that Administration managed to find a friend of the chap who owned that football club in distress

    and being  unable to arrange a CVA , were  happily able to sell  some of the principal assets of that football club quite cheaply to that friend, while they handed the club over to the Liquidators  

    • while that friend who did not have the will or resources just to pay all the creditors and buy the football club and ALL its assets (club A)  but who did have a (nudge, nudge) wee plan to set up a brand new football club (club B) and persuade the Football Authorities, by paying some of the monies owed to the Football Governance body by the liquidated Club A to agree that he was actually buying Club A with all its football history etc etc.

    Could that ever have happened?

    Could a football governance body ever admit a new club and then lie to all and sundry that it was not a new club but was actually the very same club as a club had been liquidated?

    Surely that could never have happened, and couldn’t happen anywhere!

     

  62. Cluster One 27th April 2020 at 17:04

    “It will be down to the board to determine any conditions for a transfer of membership if a club is liquidated and attempts to go down the newco route,” said the source.

    ——————————————————–

    I'm not having a go at you CO, you are clearly just quoting something.

    That's a non sequitur. If a "club is liquidated" it cannot go down any route, other than liquidation. 

    I can understand the point of the membership being transferred, but it would by definition be to a new club.

    One wonders what particular agenda the "source" was supporting. 

  63. FAO John Clark 

    If and when normal Court of Session proceedings resume in the cases we have been following, it may be possible to dial into the live proceedings.

    At the moment, access is limited to Inner House appeals, but could be extended to the Outer House later.

    The access process is detailed in the following link.  

    http://www.scotland-judiciary.org.uk/24/2376/Public-access—Court-of-Session-Inner-House-appeals

    One problem I see with that is the potential cost in joining such calls, unless you have a generous or “unlimited minutes” phone deal, or if access is via an 0800 number. 

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