Sweet Little Lies

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Tell me all your sweet, sweet little lies
All about the dark places you hide
Tell me all your problems, make them mine
Tell me all your sweet, sweet little lies

The stridency of Scottish journalist/pundits, particularly coming from those on the BBC Sportsound platform from where they cry out for an investigation into what took place behind the scenes before and after the SPFL put forward a resolution to SPFL clubs, subsequently accepted by the majority, that allowed SPFL to pay out needed prize money to sides below the Premier level is, to quote an old saying, “the talk of the steamie”.

Whilst those cries are ostensibly in support of a demand led by The Rangers FC for a need to change the governance at the SPFL, it is not clear if they mean the way the SPFL conduct business or the way individuals inside the SPFL go about the conduct of that business.

During on-air interviews, questions are being put to clubs about the degree of confidence they have in individuals rather than the processes, systems and structures. This suggests it is individuals who are being placed under scrutiny, and not the dysfunctional processes and structures themselves. A pity, since there is little doubt the governance is dysfunctional.

SFM has long been asking questions about the system and processes of governance and in fact tried to elicit the help of a number of journalists (in 2014) after information which had not been made available to the then SPFL lawyers Harper MacLeod during or after the LNS inquiry had surfaced.

Information that had it been made available would have changed the charges of Old Rangers’ mis-registration of players contracts, and to the more recent and unresolved matter of their failing to act in good faith to fellow club members (which the SFA Compliance Officer made in June 2018 in respect of non-compliance with UEFA FFP regulations relating to tax overdue in 2011).

Following the last Celtic AGM a detailed independent investigation by an accountant was provided to Celtic who passed it to the SFA where the matter has been overtaken by world events but not forgotten. That report can be read here.
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1NeNzADsUAXkcFQ6QtehK5QqNsFa6he8V

It only adds to the mountain of evidence on https://www.res12.uk that suggests the need for reform of both governance bodies, their structures, systems and process.

Instead the media have given us a narrow head hunt to remove individuals for reasons that can only be guessed. This from individuals in the media whose motivations are as questionable now as they were in 2014, when they and their organisations ignored stronger evidence of greater wrong doing than has so far been presented by those currently advocating change.

The current media clamour for heads on a plate carries with it more than a whiff of hypocrisy.

During week commencing 22 September 2014, some volunteer SFM readers posted a bundle of documents that had surfaced to a number of journalists. SFM had previously sent these documents to Harper MacLeod, the then SPL lawyers. These were important documents pertinent to Lord Nimmo Smith’s inquiry into Rangers use of EBTs, documents which had not been made available to Harper MacLeod by Rangers Administrators Duff and Phelps despite being requested in March 2012 as part of the commissioning of LNS.

Earlier SFM blogs provide the details of communications with Harper MacLeod and can be read from the same link(s) provided to 12 Scottish media journalists in the draft below.

Some of the addresses may have received more than one copy but apart from one for whom only an e mail address was known, they should have received at least one hard copy of what Harper MacLeod/SPFL had been provided with which the latter passed to the SFA Compliance Officer in September 2014 according to their last reply to SFM. It is unlikely none were received by the organisations they were addressed to.

The draft to the journalist which the volunteers were at liberty to amend said:

I am a reader of The Scottish Football Monitor web site and attach for your information a set of documents that Duff and Phelps, acting as Rangers Administrators in April 2012, failed to provide to the then Scottish Premier League solicitors Harper MacLeod, who were charged with gathering evidence to investigate the matter of incorrect player registrations from July 1998 involving concealed side letters and employee benefit trusts by Rangers FC as defined in the eventual Lord Nimmo Smith Commission.

The failure to supply the requested information in the form of the attached documents as clearly instructed resulted in incorrect terms of reference being drawn up by Harper Macleod and a consequent serious error of judgement by Lords Nimmo Smith in his Decision as regards sporting advantage.

The information in the attached was provided to Harper MacLeod and the SPL Board in Feb 2014 and it was pointed out in subsequent correspondence that SFA President Campbell Ogilvie had failed to make a distinction in his testimony to Lord Nimmo Smith between the already confirmed as irregular Discount Option Scheme EBTs paid to Craig Moore, Tor Andre Flo and Ronald De Boer from 1999 to 2002/03 under Rangers Employee Benefit Trust (REBT) and the later loan EBTsfrom 2002/03 onwards under the Murray Group Management Remuneration Trust (MGMRT), having initiated the first DOS EBT to Craig Moore (as shown in the attached) and being a beneficiary of a MGMRT EBT as widely reported in national press in March 2012 at the time investigations commenced.
The complete narrative was set out in a series of blogs on The Scottish Football Monitor Web Site that are accessible from

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B6uWzxhblAt9dnVHSl9OU3RoWm8/view?usp=sharing
(Edit: The links to the original SFM blogs were listed but some have been lost but original sources have been uploaded to Google Drive accessible from the above link)

However in spite of the correspondence sent to Harper MacLeod, there has been no response from them or the SPFL, save their answer to the original letter. (Edit: There was subsequent correspondence with Harper Macleod after the package and this letter was sent to the journalists which can be read from the above index to the original blogs.)

These points suggests that the SPFL, Harper MacLeod and Lord Nimmo Smith were misled by Duff and Phelps failure to supply the attached documents as instructed as well as Campbell Ogilvie’s failure to correct Lord Nimmo Smiths decision to treat all EBTs as “regular” when the DOS EBTs are not, as the attached evidence clearly demonstrates.

You are one of a number of journalists to whom this letter and attachments is addressed either electronically or hard copy. We are hoping that some journalists will prove themselves worthy of the challenge and investigate the story, even if only to refute it and stop suspicion of a cover up.

A copy of this letter and responses from addressees (or failures) will be published on The Scottish Football Monitor web site for the Scottish football supporting public to note. The e mail address for your reply is press@sfm.scot and we hope that you will investigate what appears to have been the corruption of the very process set up to establish the truth or you will explain why you cannot.
Yours in Sport

Note: The letter above was drafted and distributed with the documentation before a reply from Harper MacLeod was received, but as the reply did not address the issue of the nature of the irregular DOS EBTs, the request to journalists to investigate was even more valid.
The following were the journalists to whom documentation was posted/delivered.

Mr Richard Gordon
Mr Richard Wilson
Mr Tom English all at the BBC.

Mr Grant Russell
Mr Peter A Smith. At STV

Mr Andrew Rennie Daily Record Sports Editor

Mr Paul Hutcheon
Mr Graham Speirs
Mr Gerry Braiden at The Herald

Mr Mathew Lindsay Evening Times (belatedly)

Mr Gerry McCulloch Radio Clyde

Ms Jane Hamilton Freelance ex-Sun Sunday Mail (by e mail)

Only three individuals showed an interest but it is inconceivable to think that the media outlets they worked for were ignorant of the information provided or that the Scottish media sports departments are unaware of the narrative and its implications which were subsequently picked up by The Offshore Game but drew no refuting comments with the exception of Tom English.

He opined that the TOG report was ‘flawed’ although he did not specify how he came to that conclusion.

Darren Cooney of the Daily Record did take an interest in November 2015 when he met an SFM representative, who explained the case then sent him a summary to give to his editor but The Daily Record did not publish the story nor give any reason why they didn’t.

Grant Russell was with STV at the time and a meeting with him was arranged with a fellow SFM contributor but he failed to show up.
He subsequently did show an interest when The Court of Session ruled the Big Tax Case unlawful in July 2017, when he was provided with the a note of the consequences for the LNS Commission. However Grant moved jobs to join Motherwell in late October 2017.

Why bring all this his up now?
Because currently, the existence of texts and e-mails and unsubstantiated claims of skullduggery appear to have energised a media (and BBC Sports Department in particular) that had ‘no appetite’ to investigate actual evidence presented to them in 2014. There seems to be little doubt that an agenda is being followed, but as the preceeding paragraphs demonstrate, it casts doubt that their motivation is reform of the governance of Scottish football, and raises a suspicion that replacement of individuals (whose steerage of the good ship Scottish Football into the RFC iceberg was deemed adequate a decade ago) is what is important. A meaningless powerplay. No more no less.

One may jump to the conclusion that the foregoing is a defence of the individuals at the centre of this controversy, and that it defends the SPFL position in respect of the requisitioners review of governance. That would be the wrong conclusion. The point is that a wide-ranging review of the SFA/SPFL governance is way overdue.

The time window covered by any review should the very least cover the tenure of those accused of malfeasance and mis-governance. The media, and the requisitioners are cherry-picking their poor governance. That is poor governance in itself.

1118 COMMENTS

  1. I gave up listening to BBC Sportsound yesterday. Not everyone will agree, but I think many will, that the Sportsound crew are a gullible bunch!

    Once again they have allowed Ann Budge the opportunity to attempt to publicly embarrass/shame Scottish football administrators by her comments about her philanthropic acquaintances. 

    Just like Scott Gardiner she gives information to the Sportsound team that leads to them having another opportunity to blast Neil Doncaster and the cynic in me asks how come these statements always seem to come when things are not going Hearts way? 

    If she felt that ND was ignoring her why not directly share with other clubs after all they are the SPFL? Apparently it was on Hearts websites earlier in the week but that’s not the best way to share the information. 

    The Sportsound conspiracy theorists of course then had the Aberdeen manager saying he had heard about the Budge offer adding to their condemnation of ND.

    They must have been so disappointed with the Dundee United interview with a carefully worded response making it clear that they knew nothing about this possible source of funding.

    Have the Sportsound crew not learned that Ann Budge interviews more often than not have a hidden agenda and give an inaccurate representation of events? Every time they are taken in hook, line and sinker! 

    ND did make a statement in light of what was said but if it was read out on Sportsound I was no longer listening so have no idea how they treated it. 

    My sympathy for Hearts position comes and goes. I have to say Ann Budge approach tends to make it go! 

     

     

     

  2. Sorry EJ but I forgot to mention what I was actually cynical about. Given the pure mentalness of Scottish fitba it may be that whispers are reaching Celtic Park, that some clubs might prefer to stay mothballed until bums on seats are possible…..Hence Celtic's rush to get fixtures confirmed. (as you say to get up to speed)

        Such was the palaver of shutting the game down, I wouldn't be surprised to see a similar palaver as to re-starting and under what conditions. It just seemed to me that Celtic have retaliated first.  

  3. Another possible reason for Celtic’s keenness to see the fixture list for the new season could be to do with ticket pricing: Celtic’s season ticket (ST) renewal prices have been published (with renewal deadline date having already been nudged back a couple of times, to 30 June).  However, my guess is that a big number of ST-holders (not just at Celtic) may be delaying their decision to renew until they have a clearer idea of what they’re being asked to pay for.

  4. How can there possibly be a fixture list whilst there is still discussion of restructuring, which would presumably mean the top division changing size.

     

  5.     I was just reading that Celtic have ordered two all singing all dancing test machines from South Korea, offering a result within 20 minutes. Also that the SFA have ordered two and Ross County one. At £35K a pop they're not cheap. 

  6. Corrupt official 31st May 2020 at 16:06

    Dunderheid 31st May 2020 at 16:28

    Homunculus 31st May 2020 at 16:48

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

    In the normal round of announcements, the League fixtures don’t come out until the middle of June at the earliest. Last year it was 21 June.

    https://spfl.co.uk/news/201920-fixtures-released-tomorrow

    It is not unreasonable to suggest that Celtic has other motives than simply to get the league underway.

    I stick to my view that readiness for European games is their number one priority at the moment. In a normal season, training would probably resume in a week or so’s time, with a series of low key friendlies to get rid of the rustiness, then start their CL qualifying campaign in early July (the original schedule would have seen Celtic’s first qualifying game on 7/8 July).

    I can’t see any scope for friendlies before the planned 1 August start date, so it will be straight into competitive action in both the League and the CL qualifying (if there is any).

    UEFA had penciled in the month of August to complete last season’s tournaments. I guess that a qualifying tournament could run in parallel with that, but you could only play two rounds, rather than the normal four if you stuck to midweek fixtures.

     

  7. adam812 31st May 2020 at 15:54

    I gave up listening to BBC Sportsound yesterday. Not everyone will agree, but I think many will, that the Sportsound crew are a gullible bunch!

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

    For a publicly funded national broadcaster they simply don't present both sides of a debate, which is just plain wrong. Ironic they went on so much about reform in Scottish football governance. A huge clear out at the BBC would not go amiss either.  I find it particularly baffling why they place so much store on what Stephen Thompson thinks. Clearly his status as an ex-Rangers player and the holder of an illegal EBT overrides everything else. 

  8. Higgy’s Shoes 31st May 2020 at 15:45
    i suspect some sort of jiggery-pokery would come into play.
    ……………..
    A 5 way agreement could play a part

  9. Money from anonymous benefactors cannot be acceptable.Transparency requires that the sources of cash are known and are seen to be reputable. Hearts have had one such donation already and now are at it again. Is there a limit to what may be donated anonymously? £1M?, £10M, £50M? More dodgy unaccountability in Scottish Football.

  10. macfurgly 31st May 2020 at 22:12

    '…Money from anonymous benefactors cannot be acceptable.'

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    Would I be altogether off the mark, macfurgly, to understand your statement as indicating that it could not be acceptable that monies should be offered anonymously to an already suspect sports governance body , because there might possibly be the impression that undue influence may be being brought to bear on that suspect governance body in order to bring about an outcome desired by the anonymous benefactors?

    I make it clear that I am in no way impugning the motives of Mrs Budge or of those to whom she makes reference.

    Rather, based on the experience of 5-Way Agreement and the LNS/Bryson nonsense ( not to mention the questionable RIFC plc Prospectus!) , I believe that the SPFL would not be above a shabby thing, and, in effect, understand 'benefactions ' as imposing some kind of demand for a 'quid pro quo'

    If there are folk prepared out of the goodness of their hearts and a genuine desire to save Scottish Football (corrupt as it is) , then let us know who they are, so that we can assess them and their motives, and applaud them -or wonder.

  11. At the behest of my daughter , I read through TRFC's season ticket terms and conditions , ( then compared them with Thistle's ) and can find nothing that exempts them from having to offer refunds for unplayed home games . Same as me wanting nothing back from Thistle , I don't think she's after a refund ( I paid for the fecker so she's on to plums ! ), but doesn't want caught out if there are no games this year, can't accept that they are allowed just to keep the money . Could any TRFC fans looking in point me to the appropriate clause ?  Cheers .

     

     

     

  12. paddy malarkey 31st May 2020 at 23:54

    '. I paid for the fecker so she's on to plums ! '

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    The 'fecker' being the season ticket , not your daughter! ( I hope). 

    Ah, you're a hard man, pm, if you don't give your daughter the refund of what you paid!!broken heart

    I enjoyed your post.

  13. macfurgly 31st May 2020 at 22:12

    Money from anonymous benefactors cannot be acceptable.Transparency requires that the sources of cash are known and are seen to be reputable. Hearts have had one such donation already and now are at it again. Is there a limit to what may be donated anonymously? £1M?, £10M, £50M? More dodgy unaccountability in Scottish Football.

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

    The mystery benefactor has been connected with Hearts for the last five years and was instrumental in the arrangement that saw Hearts adopt the "Save the Children" shirt sponsorship, as well as helping fund the stadium redevelopment.

    In those five years his identity remained largely unknown (at his request) to everyone outside the inner circle of the Hearts board.

    Now step forward less than 48 hours. He offers support to struggling SPFL clubs and his name is revealed and plastered over the Daily Record.

    Now who has the most integrity, the benefactor, Hearts, the SPFL or the Daily Record?   

  14. easyJambo 1st June 2020 at 09:07

    '…He offers support to struggling SPFL clubs and his name is revealed and plastered over the Daily Record.

    Now who has the most integrity, the benefactor, Hearts, the SPFL or the Daily Record? '

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    Prime suspect has to be the SPFL, in my book.

    The DR is incapable of doing any original fact-finding and research, reliant as it is on regurgitating what is fed to it.

    James Anderson would not have provided the details.

    Hearts had kept schtum for years. 

    I think Anne Budge had to tell the SPFL, in confidence, and someone in that outfit fed the story to the DR.

    If the DR had known about the details when Budge first mentioned the fact that people were prepared to help, they sure as hell would have published them then.

    And the SPFL has a track record of lack of integrity.

     

  15. The SPFL resolution to end the season and distribute monies to the lower league clubs was passed on 10 April 2020.

    The Premiership was called on 18 May 2020.

    At the time many a chairman stepped up and said the resolution was great because 1) It got the last tranche of prize money into the club’s bank accounts and 2) It gave everyone certainty so as to plan for next season.

    We are now at 1 June 2020 and still we haven’t got a clue what is happening with regard to Scottish Football.

    The SPFL chairman has recently been talking about the Bet Fred Cup starting in July while at the same time lower league clubs are talking about mothballing. Therefore, you can’t have both scenarios.

    The Premiership is trying to get started ASAP but there is no obvious pathway for how the Championship and Leagues One and Two are to start up.

    In that circumstance if you thought that promotion and relegation were difficult to decide in 2019/20 what about 2020/21.

    For example if the talked about 18 game Championship goes ahead from January 2021 and, say , Hearts win, will they be worthy of promotion? Will the bottom team in the Premiership, say Dundee United, feel hard done when they will have toiled over a full season only to be replaced by a team playing a limited number of games. Asterisks anyone?

    Presumably there will be no relegation from the Championship to a mothballed League One where no-one will gain promotion. Teams in the lower two divisions could therefore be ‘trapped’ there for a season and maybe even more.

    What came across from Ann Budge’s interview broadcast on Saturday was an apparent frustration at a lack of progress for the footballing authorities.

    Yes there is a degree of self interest in relation to Hearts position but she now seems to be  not only putting forward plans for reconstruction but now also trying to find out exactly what other teams are intending to do.

    Perhaps her tardiness in dealing with Mr Levein has made her realise action needs to be taken and quickly to make progress if football in the lower leagues is going to survive let alone be played anytime soon.

    Where has her co-chair on this group, Hamilton and SPFL Board member Les Gray,  gone – missing in action.

    What have the lower league teams contributed to the debate from all these self-proclaimed experienced business men – nothing but criticism. (See Clyde and Cowdenbeath) As far as I can see not one positive uttering or any alternative proposals for finding a way forward.

    As discussed above they don’t even seem to have considered the future implications of mothballing on other teams in the SPFL or the pyramid system in general.

    Where are these guys in terms of finding  innovative solutions.

    Budge, through her contacts, appears to be trying to bringing potential new cash into the game in attempt to see Scottish Football through this crisis.

    Where is the similar drive to seek out help and use wealthy contacts for the whole of the Scottish game from the big players at Celtic, Aberdeen, Hibs etc.

    Where is the similar drive from the lower league chairmen?

    As the old saying goes, if you want something done give it to a busy person. At least Budge comes across as being passionate about trying to move matters forward – not only for Hearts but for others.

    As always the Scottish Football Authorities have reverted to type and set up a Joint Response group with six sub-groups. Plenty of chatting but no action. Like many initiatives before,  anything coming out of these groups will stifled by the self-interest of member clubs, the can will be kicked down the road and/or a weighty document will be produced that will end up siting on a shelf.

    The game needs real leadership now but I don’t see anyone in a position of authority really trying to get a grip on things.

    Budge, at least, appears to be trying to find a way forward but, for a variety of reasons, seems to be getting little or no support from the wider game and now her contact, who may have been able to help from a financial point of view, has been ‘outed’ and could be more inclined to walk away so as to leave the petty minded to get on with it.

  16. I too think Celtic are desperate to get the footie underway because of the Euro quailifiers , Ive no problem with that. However I am very uneasy about the way Rangers have said before that they dont want to play games behind closed doors . I get that to a certain extent too as playing these games will incur costs , costs that they probably cant meet.  With all the fraud , cheating and down right lies that that club has been guilty of over the years I dont think it would be too far fetched for them to "claim" that a right few of their players have tested positive for covid and no games can be played ………..no footie , possibly not any form of meaningful games  for Celtic to prepare for a shot at the champs leaugue……… the Rangers fans would erect a statue for DP if that came about. … Ok maybe I am being paranoid but I have been guilty of not being paranoid enough in the past

  17. I’m as confused as anyone about self-isolation & the duration thereof when arriving in the UK from a foreign country.

    I understand that a large number of non-Scottish footballers returned to their ‘home’ countries to sit out the pandemic & the consequent footballing hiatus.

    If these players come back to Scotland to commence training on the eleventh of this month how is that possible if they are required to isolate themselves at a specific address for fourteen days?

  18. To echo the cynicism echoed by some other posters, we are supposed to believe that a previously unidentified "off the radar" billionaire is now willing to donate money to the teams in the lower leagues without expecting anything in return. 

    It's obviously got nothing to do with him having a connection with Hearts and Hearts, purely by chance mind you, wanting to gain the support of teams in their attempts to reconstruct all of the professional leagues so that they avoid regulation. Of course, there is no chance these two items could be in any way related. 

    Scottish football does itself no favours sometimes…or should that be all of the time?!

     

     

  19. ElCapitano2013 1st June 2020 at 14:04

    As discussed above, all other teams, individually or as a group, are more than welcome to source other streams of income to help resolve elements of the ongoing crisis.

    (Michael Stewart has been banging on about trying to raise the issue of additional broadcasting rights and income for weeks now)

    As Budge said in her interview, yes it is about Hearts being relegated in unusual circumstances but it is also about peoples jobs, not only at Tynecastle but at other clubs. For some it may actually be about survival.

    I’m more than happy for this chap to simply keep on directing his millions towards Tynecastle if his offer is so abhorrent to others.

    Reading between the lines, while there will be hardship playing in the Championship, if it ever gets started, the message is that Hearts appear to be in a reasonable financial position with people, including this philanthropist and the FoH all potentially putting money into the club over and above season tickets and merchandising sales. Whatever this next season brings the club will make the required financial decisions and, IMHO, still come out the other side.

    I’m guessing that some may not be so lucky the longer this crisis goes on.

    While I hope that all teams can survive, if any do fall then I hope they remember who at least tried to offer assistance and who drew up their drawbridges.

  20. easyJambo 1st June 2020 at 09:07

    Now who has the most integrity, the benefactor, Hearts, the SPFL or the Daily Record?  
    oooo

    I take it from that his name and the nature of his donations was known to the SPFL, who were satisfied as to his aims and integrity. I trust the same was the case with the previous other anonymous donors to Hearts. 

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/42415484

    That being the case, they are not truly anonymous. Anonymity would mean donations from unknown persons, possibly in the £M’s from, possibly and allegedly, Hong Kong or South Africa which may cause UEFA or others to consider the possibility of money laundering or other corruption. The source of funds into football needs complete transparency.

  21. Cluster One 1st June 2020 at 13:40

    I see what you are saying, however an alternate take on that could be that it relates to expenses other than the ticket itself. For example if someone had paid for travelling, a hotel or whatever else.

    In the even of such ambiguity surely it should be read to favour the party which did not draw up the contract.

    Having said that, there is unlikely to be any legal action, so I doubt it will go anywhere. 

  22. wottpi 1st June 2020 at 14:32

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

    When you say "people putting money into the club", is this actual donations, as opposed to loans, buying shares etc.

  23. Cluster One 1st June 2020 at 13:40

    Thanks for that , but I'd read that and don't think it covers the current situation . The matches haven't been postponed or cancelled , they have been"called" within the competition rules and the points shared between the competing teams . And it's not incurred expenses that you would be looking to recover , but recompense for undelivered product you are being deprived of . 

  24. macfurgly 1st June 2020 at 15:12

    I take it from that his name and the nature of his donations was known to the SPFL, who were satisfied as to his aims and integrity. I trust the same was the case with the previous other anonymous donors to Hearts. 

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

    I think that you will find that the Hearts donor(s) on each occasion have been one and the same.

    I don’t think that it is within the remit of the SPFL to satisfy themselves that the source(s) of clubs’ income is kosher.  However, Hearts do have a legal responsibility in terms of money laundering regulations to ensure that any funds they receive are legitimately sourced and given. That means conducting due diligence on the donor(s).

    Where the football authorities may have an interest is in relation to UEFA FFP. As Auldheid has previously pointed out that is very much a self certification exercise with the SFA doing next to no diligence on the returns. 

    Unlike other clubs, each tranche of cash received by Hearts was a donation. There were no loans involved, no shares issued, nada.  Any Hearts trading “losses” that may have been covered by the cash sums received were just a fraction of that allowed by UEFA (€39m over three years). 

    No rules were broken, bent or anything else untoward. If  you disagree with clubs being allowed to accept generous donations, then you better have a word with the Boards of the Foundation of Hearts, the Well Society, AberDNA, etc.  

  25. easyJambo 1st June 2020 at 16:50

    Thanks, that is what I was asking, so it was donations.

    I believe I read that all he wanted for that was not to have to wear a tie. Which I have to say is quite cool.

    However if it was allowed it just shows Hearts don't have the same high standards as Rangers, at least sartorially. 

  26. I assume that the proposed donation will be to the SPFL who will then 'divvy up' the cash but on what basis?.Football clubs in the top flight are owned and operated by rich men in their own right(with notable exceptions such as Motherwell) and it would be unseemly if said owners sat back to take advantage of this gentlemans largesse.
    As no shares or equity is involved does the recipient have to pay tax on the gift ?

  27. The frustration is starting to show on here. To expect any organisation to plan for the future under the present circumstances is expecting too much. The EPL can take the gamble without financial mayhem worrying them too much but in Scotland we don't have that luxury. 

    So Hearts and Celtic aren't getting the clarity they seem to expect, so what? They, and there fans, are ignoring the threat to the future viability of the other clubs and the health of the players that they expect to bend to their requests just so they can deal with their own predicament.

    Is it really acceptable to risk a number of clubs' existence just so that one club can get its defined number of games or so another club can get match practice to better its chances in Europe and extend its financial superiority over the rest?

    Calm down and let's just be thankful that we are healthy enough to worry about the future.

     

  28. Mickey Edwards 1st June 2020 at 17:32

    I don’t expect any number of games and nor do I expect players and other members of a team’s staff to be put at risk.

    What I do expect now is, after the resolution was voted through so convincingly over six weeks ago (as we are often gleefully reminded) and many a chairman waxed lyrical about how it was great news as they could now make plans for 2020/21,  that the powers that be and the ‘supportive chairmen’ actually come forward with those plans. 

    If, having considered the options,  they want to mothball then go ahead if that helps their clubs survive. 

    However just say so and those who want and can play can make the appropriate arrangements.

    If you recall it was Hearts asking why the SPFL was in such a hurry and in supporting the T’Rangers motion queried the actions and intentions of the board and the key members of staff.

    Now the first resolution has passed and the T’Rangers one defeated  those same board members and CEO, supportive chairmen etc seem to be dragging their heels.

    Why? Because as usual they had no long term plan beyond dealing with one hurdle when clearly there are at least a dozen ahead.

    The current situation is not one of Hearts or indeed Celtic’s making.

     

     

  29. wottpi 1st June 2020 at 18:46

    I don’t think Hearts “supported” Rangers per se. Well any more than they supported Stranraer. 

    Am I not right in saying that Hearts, Rangers and Stranraer together called for an EGM to discuss a resolution that all three put forward. 

    Probably worth also mentioning that both Hearts and Rangers have now accepted that the league could not be played to a conclusion. 

    https://spfl.co.uk/news/ladbrokes-premiership-and-spfl-season-201920-cur

     

  30. WOTTPI@18:46

    The simple fact is that no-one knows what we are able to do. Our politicians,as always, are making changes that will let them achieve their goals while not upsetting the masses. They want to start the country back to work but that will cost lives. They will use the frustration of people shut up at home to believe that it will be safe to do so and they will pray that it doesn't backfire on them. Should something as trivial as sport take that same attitude? 

    The simple fact is that, just like everyone else, the football governing body does not know what the future holds. They can't predict what will happen once the league restarts. Smaller teams could go to the wall if a single case of covid19 shuts it all down again. They will have committed to contracts while knowing that there is no kitty in the Scottish game that can help them.

    Clubs see a message from the government indicating that we are returning to normal but that is a lie. Do you really think that they should gamble?

    I have no time for the SFA and SPFL but they are on a hiding to nothing in the current circumstances. For Celtic to want clarification so that they can prepare for Europe and Hearts so that they can plan for next season is the height of stupidity. Number one aim is to clarify what, under the worst circumstances, each club needs to survive and whether we can afford it. 

    Having said that, does it really matter what the end result is at a time when we don't even know what awaits us in the new normal. Recession, hyper-inflation, high unemployment, an elderly population that cannot mix with the rest of society for fear of catching a fatal illness and a government has no financial reserves to pay credits to the much higher numbers of poor and unemployed.

    I don't think that knowing next year's fixture list is really going to matter, do you?

  31. Mickey Edwards 1st June 2020 at 20:12

    In the big scheme of things I don't think next season's fixtures are a priority.

    But those matters are for other forums.

    This is a football forum/blog to discuss the matters of the day. Therefore I think it is perfectly, reasonable to comment on current developments.

    Yes there are going to be many hurdles and issues ahead but football is like any other business and it needs to make plans as best it can.

    When things get tough folks like a distraction, be that drink, fags, the movies or sport.

    Football and other sports may not be top of the list in terms of  restoring the countries financial position but it may help with peoples mental health and therefore shouldn't be so easily dismissed.

  32. I note that there are expressions of hope that the SPFL Board will not use the distribution model used for the distribution of Commercial Revenue in deciding how to allocate to the 42 clubs such millions of pounds as may come as a charitable gift from a donor/donors to 'Scottish Football'.

    The Articles appear to give the Board absolute discretion in how other monies or revenue of whatever kind other than 'commercial' are to be dealt with. 

    But it surely would not be right for any division  in the SPFL to be given less than any other? And there would have to be some provision made from the total gift for other areas of the sport, perhaps the women's game and certainly grass -roots football?

    Each division might thereafter decide how to distribute its share among the clubs in that division.

    No club or division ca be assumed to have an 'entitlement'  to a  greater share than any other club of an unearned, charitable gift!

     

  33. WOTTPI@20:12

    My original answer to your post @12:34 yesterday where you wrote a long moan asking why people, the administrators and the lower league clubs, were not doing something. My response was to show that it was unfair to demand that. So my posts are football related.

    As far as planning for the future I think you will find that companies of equivalent size to Scottish football clubs will be at the same point of forward planning, financial risk assessment and prayers that they will solvent. Our experience from the 2008 financial crash tells that the banks and financial institutions will not be listening closely to those prayers.

    I would say though, as someone who has his own mental health issues, getting angry at the running of the game will do nothing to ward that off. In fact quite the opposite.

  34. JC @ 11:59

    This is where giving a donation to the organisation is inappropriate. Far better to put the money in a trust (NOT an EBT) and let the clubs apply for financial aid supported by a clear plan for its use.

  35. Mickey Edwards 2nd June 2020 at 12:04

    '..Far better to put the money in a trust ..'

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

    I wouldn't disagree  with that , of course, although I would wonder why the likes of James Anderson (who probably knows a thing or to about Trusts!) would not himself have suggested that way forward? [ Of course, for all we know he may already have proposed that, and the talks with the SPFL may indeed run along those lines]

    The really important thing is to ensure that, whether it's a one-off charitable lump sum payment or a continuing Trust arrangement looking to the future as much as to the present, the 'commercial revenue' distribution  model'  is ruled out.

  36. I see the SMSM has recently wheeled out SPL referees, in articles whose purpose seems to be to generate sympathy for the whistlers – and for the well paid, side job they have chosen.

    Interestingly though, this is one area where most/all SPL clubs’ supporters are united: there is minimal trust or respect for the match officials.

    I don’t think a few feeble SMSM articles will help either – and especially going by their attached ‘Comments’.

    And another cost of the shutdown – presumably – will be the delayed introduction of VAR.  The Scottish Referees Association will no doubt be able to kick that particularly awkward can along the road – for another couple of seasons, at least?

    So, whenever the game restarts behind closed doors and further: we are stuck with the unacceptably poor standards of match officiating.

    …along with the continuation of unacceptably poor standards of governance at Hampden.

    Mibbees the SFA could add a sixth ‘pillar’ to their ‘Strategic Objectives’, just for transparency;

    “No change: no improvement.”

  37. John Clark @ 12.31

    I had no idea who James Anderson was. However coincidently today’s Herald Business has a big feature on a James Anderson, joint manager of £10bn Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust and Baillie Gifford partner. I assume it is he?? Or maybe not??

    Presumably it is within the donor’s gift to say how any donation is spent and if the SPFL feel that they can not commit to any/all of the conditions (an extreme example would be that there has to be a restructuring that meant Hearts were in the top division) then they would have to decline. If it was to pay for every club’s covid testing then that would probably be OK. Alternatively there may be no strings attached and therefor could be the money spent at the discretion of the SPFL. I do not know how much is being donated but unless it were a very large sum then the income from a Trust Fund would likely be insignificant in today’s environment when divided by 42?

  38. Bordersdon@13:55

    According to the Scotsman, that's the very man.

    As to the trust, a large income is not a priority. The big clubs have no right to stay big and therefore should not be looking to a fund to help them do so. They have the ability to cut their cloth at this difficult time. Unfortunately the amount of cloth clubs below the top leagues have wouldn't be enough to make a thong for an anorexic. The only cuts that they could make would be there own throats. It is for these clubs that a fund would be advantageous at a later date. Just now though I can't see past the mothball option.

  39. bordersdon 2nd June 2020 at 13:55

    !Presumably it is within the donor’s gift to say how any donation is spent '.

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

    Both Mrs Budge and Mr Anderson ( the very same Anderson) have indicated that the gift would be made absolutely and without pre-conditions as to how it is to be spent.

    And the amounts being mentioned are in the order of £9 million or so, apparently.

    42 into £9M=£214 285 and pence. Not a lot of help to the bigger clubs, but a potential life-saver to many clubs which might otherwise die due to lack of lack of revenue because of 'behind-closed-doors matches' .

    I think my basic point is that whatever use is made of the charitable donation, the 'commercial revenue' distribution model should NOT be used!!

     

     

  40. Homunculus 1st June 2020 at 15:17
    paddy malarkey 1st June 2020 at 15:22
    …………………
    They did Receive a £25 voucher, but i could not find anywhere that it would state a £25 voucher is what you would get as compensation for a situation like this. Seen a few screen grabs of fans not happy for not getting any refund for games not being played.
    …………
    But Rangers won’t be following the likes of Stirling Albion and Partick Thistle who have offered refunds to fans, and will provide vouchers to be used on club products instead.

    The £25 being provided by Rangers will be able to be used on the new MYGERS membership scheme, match tickets – including friendlies, women’s games, cup tickets and legends matches -, hospitality packages, soccer school programmes, RangersTV subscriptions, stadium tours and club events.
    I could be wrong but it looks like no refund, you get a £25 voucher a season ticket price freeze and a few other bits and bobs.
    Thing is if they are selling next seasons tickets at the same price, and next season kicks off with no fans, Will they be offered another £25 voucher?

    It comes as the Ibrox side begin selling their season tickets to fans for next season with managing director Stewart Robertson announcing the new scheme.

  41. wottpi 1st June 2020 at 22:34

    21
    Mickey Edwards 1st June 2020 at 20:12

    In the big scheme of things I don’t think next season’s fixtures are a priority.

    But those matters are for other forums.
    ……………….
    Celtic like most clubs may want to get things in order, although that order could change at any time.but best be prepared anyhow.
    ……………….
    Smaller teams could go to the wall if a single case of covid19 shuts it all down again. They will have committed to contracts while knowing that there is no kitty in the Scottish game that can help them.
    …Don’t smaller teams get Uefa solidarity payments on the back of Celtic reaching the Champions League group stage?
    Could be a life saver for some clubs this season. Celtic doing there homework early could help a lot of clubs.

  42. I know JC was looking into the IPO.

    I stumbled across this.

     

    https://www.investorschronicle.co.uk/2012/10/19/comment/chronic-investor-blog/rangers-ipo-likely-to-appeal-to-fans-not-investors-4K3OdfNlzZV4zBan7MLmDK/article.html
    …………..
    Investors chronacle.
    It means that the new club – The Rangers Football Club Limited – is debt-free.
    ….
    As punishment for going into administration, Rangers was booted out of the SPL, Scotland’s top division.
    It is a bit over the place. A new club, but no mention of liquidation, just administration, and there is an upside for the 54-times Scottish New club champions.

  43. Cluster One 2nd June 2020 at 20:34

    '…

    I know JC was looking into the IPO.

    I stumbled across this.'

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

    Ha,ha, Cluster One:

    I've put  Ken Wieland  in among the SMSM's worst purveyors of  half-arsed 'journalism'  and propagators of misleading pieces. 

    I'd never heard of him before (my household has not much call for the 'Investor's Chronicle'!)  and may I say I would never read anything else he ever wrote or may write again, if he's still around.

    Thanks for the link.

  44. John Clark 2nd June 2020 at 21:07
    ………….
    Found while looking for something else, so many things wrong in one article, and they are the ones who are suppose to know what they are talking about.

  45. CO @ 18:42

    "Don’t smaller teams get Uefa solidarity payments on the back of Celtic reaching the Champions League group stage?"

    No they don't unless they are in the top division in the previous season. So Dundee United will get nothing as will all the clubs in the other three leagues.

    I take it that it was a typo when you put "Celtic" in the above quote instead of "any Scottish club" because UEFA don't care whether it is Celtic or not. Only the ever more skewed Scottish set-up means that the odds are stacked against any other Scottish team doing well in Europe.

    It is a self-regenerating anomaly that is not good for the Scottish game. It is the very same anomaly that sees Celtic unprepared to call out the Big Lie. That sees desire for income trump the good of the game. Celtic (at this moment it is Celtic although a hat tip should go towards the Ibrox club for outlasting them in last season competition) would veto any move to make our league more competitive if that challenged there place at the top.

    Be clear, this is NOT about sport this is about money. Those that still carry the belief in the "Celtic way" and the "Celtic family" need to come to terms with the reality that their club's board has long since jettisoned that fantasy.

    To get back to your point. The solidarity payment is not from Celtic but from UEFA. I think if the responsibility of deciding where that money ended up were handed to Celtic we would see it resting in their own bank account. What it currently adds to the coffers of the recipient teams would be less than what they would earn through the gates playing in a league where the disparity in quality and finance was minimised.

  46. Mickey Edwards 3rd June 2020 at 08:34
    “Don’t smaller teams get Uefa solidarity payments on the back of Celtic reaching the Champions League group stage?”

    No they don’t unless they are in the top division in the previous season. So Dundee United will get nothing as will all the clubs in the other three leagues.
    …………………
    I was more talking about the smaller teams in the top division as that is were celtic play And the lower leagues have not been given a start date yet.(Celtic to want clarification so that they can prepare for Europe)
    So the smaller clubs in the top division will get a UEFA solidarity payments.

    ….
    Dundee utd may miss out on a UEFA solidarity payment but will know that playing in the top division will bring other rewards.
    ………….
    I take it that it was a typo when you put “Celtic” in the above quote instead of “any Scottish club”
    …No typo, as the original post was about celtic calling for clarification.
    …………………
    You say. Only the ever more skewed Scottish set-up means that the odds are stacked against any other Scottish team doing well in Europe.
    But then give hat tip towards the Ibrox club for outlasting them in last season Europa competition. Not much of a stack against then.I suppose if other clubs wanted to speculate to accumulate like the ibrox club they could do well in europe and out last them in european competition.
    ………………….
    I agree that the desire for income trump the good of the game.Has done for many years but no one complained about it, they did try and keep that desire for income in the top division in 2012 but the fans believed it would have killed the integrity of the game and was a lesson to be learned to keep club finances in order as you never know what is coming down the pipe.
    …………..
    Be clear, this is NOT about sport this is about money. Clear as day, always has been about money.
    …………………
    To get back to your point. The solidarity payment is not from Celtic but from UEFA.

    Never said it was from celtic.
    Don’t smaller teams get Uefa solidarity payments on the back of Celtic reaching the Champions League group stage?

  47. Sky’s deal to show SPFL matches for the coming season and the introduction of virtual season tickets has been concluded.

    https://spfl.co.uk/news/scottish-premiership-to-return-as-part-of-new-de

    It’s worth noting that it looks as if the liability due to Sky in respect of games not shown at the end of season 2019/20, is being repaid over the five year duration of the new deal.

    It was suggested yesterday that Sky was due in excess of £1.5m.

  48. I'm not giving a "hat tip" to a club which lasted longer in Europe by losing £11m in the previous season, then immediately spending £10m on players it couldn't afford.

    They are still in the Europa Cup so could win it. However with the amount of money they have spent / lost since they were formed they should have won at least one domestic trophy since they falteringly clambered into the top division. 

     

  49. I recall EUFA solidarity payments being mentioned by ASWGL on SentinelCelts recently

    In 2018 nine clubs in the SPFL got more than £370,000 each, in UEFA solidarity payments due to Celtic reaching the Champions League group stages. Celtic themselves received £28.7m.

    As CO correctly states it could be a life saver for a lot of clubs

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/45978052

  50. Easy Jambo @ 12.40

    ———————————–

    If it is correct that the repayment regarding 2019/20 is £1.5m to be repaid over 5 years and the 5 year deal is for £150m (I think) then this is not a bad outcome. Considering that over 20% of the 2019/20 season was not completed including 50% of the BIG games £1.5m seems very reasonable.

    Whether or not the Scottish game is being undersold compared to other comparable countries is of course another question.

  51. my post of 13.44: delete the redundant 'you' between 'when' and 'people' in the first line, please.

  52. bordersdon 3rd June 2020 at 13:51

    If it is correct that the repayment regarding 2019/20 is £1.5m to be repaid over 5 years and the 5 year deal is for £150m (I think) then this is not a bad outcome. Considering that over 20% of the 2019/20 season was not completed including 50% of the BIG games £1.5m seems very reasonable.

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

    In the reconstruction papers a figure of £9m+ was mentioned. The fact that the SPFL has reached a settlement with SKY now opens the door for other broadcasters to do likewise, e.g., re BT live games, BBC highlights, radio and live championship games, international deals (do we still have that?), Ladbrokes as league sponsors etc.   

  53. There are still a lot of unanswered questions following the SPFL's statement, particularly about virtual STs. I'm a bit sceptical about the arrangements as I don't think they are quite the radical innovation that they are being portrayed.

    "During the 2020/21 season, each Premiership club will be able to sell a package to season ticket holders to watch all home games."

    Streaming is limited to existing/new ST holders?

    Do you therefore have to purchase a full price ST in order to watch (in theory, only one person in a household would need to buy one for a whole family and friends to watch).

    No individual match tickets?

    No access for fans to stream away games?

    How long is the service available? The whole season or until fans are allowed back (in limited or unlimited numbers)

    I assume games can be streamed at 3pm on a Saturday.

    Does the streaming service cover games that are already being shown live by Sky?

    On what platform will they be streamed, e.g. on a club's website, youtube etc.?

    Is there a limit on the number of subscribers for any club?

    Who will be providing the cameras/commentators?

    Will Sky be taking a cut of the revenue?

    Will Championship, L1 and L2 clubs be allowed to stream their games simultaneously?

     

     

  54. Sky have a cheek.

    They want the money back for non completion of the season whilst still charging Sky customers

    for a package which contains no live sport.

    I've contacted Sky to cancel or get a price reduction and they tell me I am to be held to the 18 month contract I took out with them last summer. 

     

    HS

     

  55. Higgy's Shoes 3rd June 2020 at 15:36

    I've contacted Sky to cancel or get a price reduction and they tell me I am to be held to the 18 month contract I took out with them last summer. 

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

    Is that correct. I was sure that Sky Sports had offered a 3 month pause on subscriptions, i.e. extending them beyond the current contract.

    I have a "premier league" Now TV subscription (subsidiary of Sky) which gives me streaming access to all the Sky Sports channels.  I also complained about the loss of live sport and finally they agreed to refund 3 months worth of my subscription. A day later, I got an email saying that they had instead decided to extend my contract an no extra cost until the EPL season is complete, which is all I had asked for in the first instance.  

  56. EJ: I thought so too.

     

    But trying to get a rebate/cancellation is impossible (obviously not for you).

    I noticed you used the words "finally they agreed" which suggests that things weren't straightforward.

    Also, one of my friends has Sky through Talk Talk.  No rebate for him either.

    Although this can't solely be put down to Sky.

    But some general questions need to be asked

    Have Sky reduced the costs to third  parties?

    If not, then why not?

    If they have, then why aren't these third parties reducing the amount they are charging their customers.

     

    HS 

  57. Higgy's Shoes 3rd June 2020 at 16:18

    But trying to get a rebate/cancellation is impossible (obviously not for you).

    I noticed you used the words "finally they agreed" which suggests that things weren't straightforward.

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

    It wasn't straightforward. I used their complaints process without success, before eventually emailing Sky's CEO (jeremy.darroch@bskyb.com). That finally got a response from their customer service department and, after a few emails were exchanged, we reached an acceptable settlement.

    Now TV's Ts & Cs requires that any material change to the services provided should be communicated to customers. They didn't do that with me. I'd imaging that Sky's Ts & Cs will be similar. Add a threat to take the matter to OFCOM if you don't get a satisfactory outcome.

     

  58. I'm with Virgin.

    They have reduced my payment by c£30 for the last couple of months because of no live sport. 

    I still have SKY and BT Sport available to me.

  59. The demand on CelticTV servers will be substantial in terms of providing a reliable streaming service. 50K season ticket holders plus existing expat subscriber base all adds up to trouble ahead. I think it will have to be offered via the Sky streaming platform as they have the infrastructure to cope.If the clubs try and limit access to a single stream per registered address on the season ticket list then they fuel the demand for refunds. I can see multi ticket households lending a virtual ticket to a mate as they ahem can't attend the game that week.Pubs will have a field day too.Tricky.

  60. easyJambo 3rd June 2020 at 16:37

    ‘…., before eventually emailing Sky’s CEO (jeremy.darroch@bskyb.com). That finally got a response.’

    “That finally got a response” (my italics)

    “””””””””””””””””””””

    That’s where I went wrong in these kind of complaint matters!

    The CEO of the FCA fecked off to the Bank of England when I complained to him direct about their authorisation of the RIFC plc ‘Prospectus’ without first writing to his minions .broken heart

    Seriously, though, and may I say, eJ, that your list of questions in relation to the SPFL/Sky ‘deal ‘, when set against the likes of David Currie’s ‘BBC Scotland’ report of about 9 hours ago ,clearly demonstrates the deficiencies of our SMSM sports journalists;

    not in the fact that they cannot provide answers but in the fact that they don’t even ask questions, or seem to think it’s important to ask detailed questions that are of great practical significance to football club supporters!

    They take their ‘handout ‘ and some encouraging words on the phone from some vested interests, add a few words of bumph of their own, and come out with an unbalanced, totally useless bit of journalistic CRAP.

    In my view as one speaking as someone who has no Sky , Virgin, Youtube  or football club TV subscription.

     

     

     

  61. Homunculus@13:05

    Unfortunately the written word does not allow clarity when an attempt is made to be facetious, there isn't even an emoji for it. CO's responding comments to me intimated that Celtic required to be heeded because, afterall, they would be saving clubs from financial ruin if they did well in Europe. That is just as unacceptable to the supporters of the "smaller" clubs than money generated by the other cheek in Europe. If we are to be grateful to Celtic for the solidarity payments then we should be more grateful to TRFC as their run in Europe was/is longer. I don't think so.

     

  62. Cluster One @ 10:18 yesterday.

    You post was in response to a thread regarding Celtic and Hearts requesting action inspired by self interest when the current situation would mean the requested action would disadvantage other clubs. By introducing solidarity payments you could only be justifying Celtic's right to make the request. To later state that you had meant that "smaller clubs" that would be saved by this was only meant to refer to the top league leaves us to surmise that you believe that only the top league matters and in that league Celtic matter more than other clubs. It is an attitude we smaller club supporters see consistently from the supporters of the "big two" from Glasgow.

    Perhaps it would be worthwhile if the "big two" supporters kept in mind that the word "big" refers only to the number of supporters that turn up on match day which in turn leads to bigger bank balances. Within my own time following football I can recall periods where the attendances at Parkhead and Ibrox numbered c.10,000. These were times when other clubs had broken the stranglehold. There are two types of football supporter, those that enjoy the sport and those that want to wear "their"(?) clubs mantle of success. Unfortunately, because they are in the majority at any club, it is the latter that finances continued success. It is why my own club takes three times its average gate to a cup final.

    Ibrox is not the sole preserve of hubris it is a characteristic of every glory hunting supporter no matter the replica strip that they wear.

  63. Mickey Edwards 4th June 2020 at 09:17
    How would celtic’s request for a fixture list for the Spfl disadvantage other clubs?
    ………………..
    leaves us to surmise that you believe that only the top league matters

    So far it is only the top league that has a start date, and it matters to celtic to see what the fixtures are from that start date.
    ………….
    Perhaps it would be worthwhile if the “big two” supporters kept in mind that the word “big” refers only to the number of supporters that turn up on match day which in turn leads to bigger bank balances. Within my own time following football I can recall periods where the attendances at Parkhead and Ibrox numbered c.10,000.
    ……………
    You don’t have to remind me as i was there.
    ………………
    Perhaps it would be worthwhile if the “big two” supporters kept in mind that the word “big” refers only to the number of supporters that turn up on match day which in turn leads to bigger bank balances.

    These were times when other clubs had broken the stranglehold
    ………
    We are often reminded thet a big bank balance leads to no sporting advantage.

  64. Having been to Celtic Park and Ibrox Stadium when the home clubs have been in the doldrums , my opinion is that their support is 50/50 at best fans/gloryhunters . What I think we are seeing  from the TRFC support is defiance and a refusal to accept things as they stand from the less committed supporters who only wish to be associated with success . Some people on both sides are only buying into the ST lark to try and best their rivals numbers . 

  65. As noted by our hero, John Clark,

    JC

    “In my view as one speaking as someone who has no Sky, Virgin, Youtube or football club TV subscription.”

    I don’t often comment but I have considerable sympathy with John’s view of some of those ‘media outlets’. I am amazed that many of the contributors to this Blog, who will rightly condemn SFA/SPFL/Sevco, etc., for the disgraceful management of Scottish Football, will still happily fund the empires of people like Murdoch and Branson. It’s almost as bad as buying ‘stuff’ from Amazon (the tax-free company)!

    Wake up and smell the coffee, chaps!

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