The Last Thing Scottish Football Needs Right Now ..

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.. is More Secrecy

We all now know Lord Clark’s judgement on Friday has kicked off an arbitration process to solve the case raised by Hearts, Partick and their sleeping partner, Stranraer.
He seemingly had no option and did this because it is the “pre-decided” SFA procedure for football disputes.
Accordingly three qualified persons will be chosen from an existing SFA list and in effect become the judges and jury tasked with coming to a decision on a complex and complicated situation.
Be cogniscant that this is a situation where relegation will have huge financial impact to the three clubs and their members of staff at a time of pandemic related economic hardship.

Real people and real jobs cast aside by what could be classed as myopia and lack of leadership.

And potentially exacerbated by a decision made in secret, in an unreported process, with no avenue to appeal.

Did Hearts and Thistle and Stranraer deserve to be relegated I hear you ask?
Yes so far, and on points per game, but there were enough games left and all three could easily have avoided the drop.
By the same judgement Hearts should already have been awarded the Scottish Cup as they were statistically the remaining club with the best cup record and goal difference!

The three Arbitrators will now hear the SPFL case and the Hearts and Thistle case put forward by their expensive legal teams and then decide.

Simples.

Maybe not.
From press reports the SPFL even tried to block their own members, Hearts and Thistle, getting access to their co –owned SPFL documents but Lord Clark seemingly stopped that.
It seems being aware of the severe time constraints, and maybe also possibly suspecting downstream game-playing, he also offered his and the court’s availability if required.

Let me clarify something that I didn’t know until last week.

Arbitration is not the same as mediation.
Not even close.
From what I’ve read since, mediation would have been better for all concerned but progressing that way that would have taken a less dysfunctional corporate structure across our game.
It could and should have been the best way forward for us all.

If only.

But fair enough we all need a result and arbitration we’ve been told can maybe deliver that in around 10 days.

In the meantime ask yourself if an arbitration decision made and dished out without any kind of public scrutiny or redress is the way to go?

What if deep inside the system there is any kind of unseen bias?
By the way that’s just a question.
I’m not suggesting that there is inherent bias.
Surely no biases in Scottish football exist.

Being positive I can see the advantages of coming to a conclusion in a process that is quicker and less costly to our game than going to the courts but something about the whole thing is wrong.

My instinct says it’s the secrecy.

Most of the people I have spoken with agree.

We all live in Scotland where our government is open to the public and where government committees are on the public record.
The fourth estate is all over everything they do.
Likewise our courts are generally open to the public and to the media to report on what is happening within.

There is nothing in this dispute that should be kept secret from the real stakeholders in the game, the fans.

We all have a stake in the game.

There is nothing healthy about this closed doors charade.

It should all be out in the open.
Any judgement made without the presence and scrutiny of the media and SFM’s very own Easyjambo and John Clark is open to retrospective revisitation ad infinitum and will never bring the fairness and closure we all need.
It is not in any way the formula for the reconciliation that is needed across all 42 clubs.

Football fans don’t always have to agree but we need to know that it is refereed fairly. Arbitration rules laugh at that basic requirement.

How The Hell Did We Get Here?

As I write the countdown to the new season is underway and a sans-Hearts fixture list is imminent.
I have no idea what will happen if the three wise arbitration men decide to block the Hearts, Partick and Stranraer SPFL enforced demotions.
They might indeed.
The majority of fans wouldn’t disagree with them if they did even if it becomes a mess.

Yes that would be a doomsday scenario for all but we’d bounce back.
If it is the right thing to do for our game then a bit of hassle for Neil and Co should not stop it happening.

10 days or so will tell.

Were the Leagues Called Too Soon?

Chick and Tam on the radio certainly, and indignantly think so.
Most fans concur with many of us already watching English football nightly and wondering what if?

I think only four countries in Europe ended their leagues early.

We’ve been told the SPFL came to the decision to trigger payments because of our new TV contract.
Seems plausible enough and to be fair there was great club impecuniosity and huge amounts of uncertainty at the time.
I’ve since also heard that the old broadcast contracts were renegotiated and compensation paid for the lost games as the new Sky deal became the focus and probably the driving force.
Money rules and Sky calls the tune in their 4 old firm games view of our world.

This combined and meant two big decisions were immediately on the horizon.

First Hearts, Thistle and Stranraer were to be relegated.
(“Bye-bye guys, tough luck and take your medicine”, from your erstwhile football family friends, almost certainly avoiding eye contact in the zoom meeting)!

Secondly Brechin City, or another, was spared the play offs and with the pyramid chain broken the top team from the play offs was told to forget their hopes of joining the SPFL.

Outrageous.

Someone at the SFA should have thrown a hissy fit and done something for their 2 disadvantaged members but I don’t think they ever did.
A real insight into how heartless our game can be.

Along the way
We all sat back in amazement as Neil’s “Good Friday Disagreement” evolved when John Nelm’s Dundee’s vote got first lost, then found and then changed over the weekend.
Didn’t smell right then.
Smells even worse now.
Along the way Dundee somehow became the casting vote.
(I hope there are full records of what really happened for the Arbitrators).

At the time, and rumbling still, there was huge criticism of the SPFL board for conflating approval of something or other to the much-needed payments due to the clubs.
(Apologies for the brevity but it all merges. So much was going on and a lot we never heard about too).

Rangers then came in live on radio demanding Neil D and Rod McKenzie to be spanked very hard but never quite being able to tell us why.

Other stuff happened after the vote too.

Maybe it was clever diversionary tactics, maybe something else, but for two or three weeks it was all go in all directions.
We had task forces set up here, there and everywhere.

So many I can’t actually remember their remits and to be honest like so many I can’t quite be bothered now.

It seemed we had the game looking at the genuine change that fans want and even us the independent SFSA were asked to help by Les Gray one of the task force co-chairs.

We did by taking it to our members and to the SFM too, in good faith even though deep down we thought it was all part of a game and said so.

Sadly it was a waste of effort and time moved on but fair play to Neil and the SPFL board.
Fair play because at the 11th hour they tried to get approval from their members to temporarily extend the leagues.

Neil’s attempt to do that wasn’t an actual formal vote.
That never happened.
What was termed by the SPFL as an “Indicative Vote” was heavily defeated.

Several weeks on and 18 of our 42 clubs still won’t even tell us their fans how they voted.
I had already asked Neil Doncaster how clubs voted and he told me it was secret ballot.
So it’s still mostly secret and like all secrets has the inherent ability to fester.

None of us can blame the clubs for voting the way they did.

A couple of weeks ago when trying to analyse the vote I highlighted that Hibs inexplicably voted against an Edinburgh Derby.
Having enjoyed many I still don’t get that.

I’m also on record recently stating that Ross County also voted no and effectively sentenced their two nearest neighbours and friends, ICT and Brora, to significantly less revenue in the next year.
And at the same time their no vote helped stymie the pyramid that was introduced to allow clubs like Ross County of old access the higher leagues.
(I well remember them in the Highland League – and played against them at the time).
I haven’t spoken with Roy MacGregor about his vote but I know that if I was a chairman of a bottom six club I too would have foreseen the approaching tsunamic, post-Covid crunch coming down the tracks. That was the season when the Covid induced “temporary league” of 14 had to be reduced back to 12, meaning 3 clubs get relegated, and 1 goes into a play off position.
4 out of 14!

Ouch! Ouch! Ouch! and ouch!

Not good business for anyone.

Like Roy, I’d have said “Sorry” to ICT and Brora and voted the same as he did. Roy’s fiduciary duty is to his club not to his neighbours.

Roy, I respect your position and all other chairmen too but it should never have come to this in our totally unnecessary football civil war.

And you know after hearing John Collins say on the radio today asking “Where’s the fairness in any of this”? I can’t disagree.

Words Of Wisdom For The 3 Wise Men

Fairness would be my starting point.
We know fans will never all agree about anything because we love our clubs and they will always come first.
But we crave fairness, openness and transparency.
That’s probably the first time I have written the transparency word since Stewart Regan nearly wore it our 8 years ago.

Out message to our Arbitrators is as follows.

The Scottish Fans are the bona fide stakeholders in the game and fund the clubs.

We collectively want and will welcome bigger leagues.*

We want no extra damage to any club from Covid.

We believe that there should be transparency in everything in football.
We abhor and have no trust in closed doors and secrecy.

Please publish your results and allow access to the process along the way.

What would be wrong with that?

What harm could it do?

A significant majority of fans don’t agree with these enforced relegations and would prefer either to finish the season or enlarge the leagues permanently.

And finally fans demand to be listened to because it seems we are the only ones who are able and willing to see the bigger picture for the good of the game.

No Closed Door Festering Secrets in Scottish Football

  • Arbitrators we are happy to share our research with you.

327 COMMENTS

  1. Regarding fans returning to watch football.

    I’d have thought the SFA (eg. chief medical officer) will have continued to meet and talk with government and other individuals will have lobbied, as far as they can in this very particular situation.

    Regarding Peter and the PLC. They are the establishment club and feel powerful enough to apply public pressure on the government (note the comparisons with other leagues). Peter will also be looking for his PLC to be part of any pilot fixture where fans return to the stadium.

    Comes down to bottomline again but in this case all clubs are in a similar boat.

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

    Shug
    Maybe it hasn’t hit Kerrydale yet but the news that the French Football Federation have no jurisdiction over the friendly competition in Lyon. Therefore no reports of anyone sent off in the 360 minutes that both Rangers and Celtic matches will be sent to the SFA ……has been in the media all afternoon.

     

  2. reasonablechap 17th July 2020 at 22:41

    Shug
    Maybe it hasn’t hit Kerrydale yet but the news that the French Football Federation have no jurisdiction over the friendly competition in Lyon. Therefore no reports of anyone sent off in the 360 minutes that both Rangers and Celtic matches will be sent to the SFA ……has been in the media all afternoon.

     

    What’s kerrydale? I have a suspicion it’s a Celtic thing and you think I support Celtic sorry but I don’t. I actually posted that this afternoon btw but for some reason I have to click the post comment button twice not sure if everyone has to do that or if it’s just me. It was still there waiting to post when I came back later so I posted it then sorry if i’m way too late in asking those questions.

    Just noticed as well when I posted then that I’m going back to the page before after posting been a while since it did this.

  3. Don't you think, after Simunovic's red card and consequent ban v St Gallen during last season's friendly that agreements were reached (this close season) whereby yellows and reds would be ignored in the real sense for this year's tourney and be unreported?

    If nothing else, Kent's behaviour has reinforced TRFC's disciplinary problems and the liabilities within heir squad. 

    In my opinion, he's £5m short of the 'best' £12m TRFC have never spent. 

     

  4. The more interesting line in yesterdays media was that the Arbitration process had some kind of procedural hearing yesterday (Friday) and that the main event would begin on Monday.

    I heard whispers that the SPFL hadn’t fully complied with documents that had been requested of them. However, they weren’t from a source that I’d trust, so I’d ask if anyone can provide a more reliable situation report?

    The blog post is spot on in highlighting the regrettable lack of transparency within such an important process for Scottish football.

    It has to be noted that it was the SPFL who wanted to avoid transparency. No surprise there given the smell that emanates from the 6th floor and beyond.

  5. This interesting piece on a Motherwell tour to South America in 1928 was on the BBC site.

    It involved 13 matches and the opposition included a couple of up and coming names in the game, Brazil and Argentina !!
     

    Motherwell: Beating Argentina & bringing football to South America

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/53403363

  6. wrt to Leigh Griffiths and his ongoing (mental health) problems.

    It’s clearly not just the physical aspect of his wellbeing, but I (not exactly a lover of all things SEVCO) was struck by Barry Ferguson’s understanding and sympathetic comments on PLZ Soccer about his ‘situation’ – as he, after touching only briefly on the attitude side of Griffiths, was fulsome in his praise for his abilities and wished him all the best. Ferguson displayed a nice touch in that regard.

    However, as for the ignorant Kris Boyd, he’s been like a ‘werewolf peerin o’er a dyke’ – waiting to pounce with some more snide remarks about someone he clearly has no time for. On cue.

    Cashing in though his ‘journalistic’ (!) endeavours on another’s sad plight… and he, patron of/involved with a mental health charity?!

     

     

  7. bect67 18th July 2020 at 10:14

    "I heard whispers that" = Fake noos methinks…

    =========

    I remember that phrase being used in the run up to RFC Administration.

    IIRC, it was late December 2011 and it was either Jingle Jackson or The ET 'sports journalist' who has long since moved abroad (?).

    To paraphrase;

    "I've heard there are whispers in the corridors at Ibrox, that a deal has been done with HMRC for £5M…"

    The Bampots immediately had a right good laugh at that effort.

    It's funny how your memory can retain nonsense details…  broken heart

  8. StevieBC 18th July 2020 at 13:26
    ………
    By the time charles Green was there those whispers had turned into a Nod.
    It’s funny how your memory can retain nonsense details… 😉

    Ps also have to click post comment twice, but it has been doing that long enough for me.

  9. Cluster One 18th July 2020 at 16:57

    ‘..whispers had turned into a Nod.’

    “”””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””

    And then there was that  great ‘Your Call’ with Traynor  defensively falling out with Chick ( I wonder was bully boy Traynor on the t payroll at Ibrox  while hosting ‘Your Call’?)and ridiculing Chick’s insistence on the fact of the nod, and the significance thereof!

  10. dom16

    Re. Events Industry Advisory Group

    On what is called a full list of members dated 12th June (link below) there is one from Scotiish football and yes, he is one of Peter’s good friends. So I guess you could pretty much call it direct representation for the PLC.

    Member: Ian Maxwell, CEO at the SFA

    https://www.visitscotland.org/news/2020/group-leads-events-industry-recovery-plans

    However a few days later Peter joins to give Ian some more direct guidance. Perhaps the puppet wasn’t strong enough to do an important job.

  11. "RANGERS fans desperate to pre-order the team's new Castore home kit currently cannot do so – after House of Fraser removed their listing.

    Light Blues fans were left anxious earlier this month when the retailer – owned by Mike Ashley – was the only place offering the pre-sale online…"

    https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/sport/football/5826169/rangers-fc-news-castore-strips-house-of-fraser-listing/

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

    Oh dear.

    Is Big Mike putting TRFC in its place?

    Interesting.

    Additionally: are those 50K shirt sales orders – and already paid for – going to reach their customers from 1st August…?

  12. reasonablechap 18th July 2020 at 19:33

    ‘..However a few days later Peter joins to give Ian some more direct guidance. Perhaps the puppet wasn’t strong enough to do an important job.’

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

    Where is your authority for that statement, please?

    Membership as at 12.06.20 A full list of members of the Events Industry Advisory Group is as follows:

    https://www.visitscotland.org/news/2020/group-leads-events-industry-recovery-plans

    Peter Duthie

    CEO, SEC  (Chair, Event Industry Advisory Group)

    Bridget McConnell

    CEO, Glasgow Life

    Geoff Ellis

    CEO, DF Concerts

    Tom Clements

    President/ Director, National Outdoor Events Association / Specialized Security

    Julia Amour

    Director, Festivals Edinburgh

    Fergus Linehan

    CEO, Edinburgh International Festival

    Alan Laidlaw

    CEO, Royal Highland Show

    Lesley Beck

    Director, Rare Management (Mountain Bike World Cup)

    Johnnie Cole Hamilton

    Executive Director ‑ Championships, R&A

    Dominic McKay

    COO, Scottish Rugby

    Claire Dow

    Principal Events Officer, Dundee City Council

    Mark Laidlaw

    Director of Operations, SEC

    Calder Sibbald

    Director, Black Light Ltd

    Gayle Findlay

    Chair, Heb Celt Festival

    Ian Maxwell

    CEO, Scottish Football Association

    Nick Waight

    Managing Director, P&J Live

    Paul Bush

    Director of Events, VisitScotland

     

    Then another member was added yesterday, no mention of Peter Lawwell

    Article published 17/07/2020

    ” The 17-member group has now been joined by Marshall Dallas, CEO of the Edinburgh International Convention Centre, who brings further expertise and insight from Business Events to the EIAG.”

    https://www.visitscotland.org/news/2020/event-industry-advisory-group-hold-third-meeting

    It is important to be accurate when making statements of fact and to give one’s sources where possible, unless, of course, one is employed as a sports journalist in the SMSM. 
    For example : statement:Rangers FC of 1872 is in Liquidation -see CH records

    statement of fact: The Rangers FC was founded in 2012 (known formerly as SevcoScotland, formerly Club 12)– See records of the SFA and SPL/SFL[ SPFL] and Companies House

     

  13. reasonablechap 18th July 2020 at 07:31

    " I heard whispers that the SPFL hadn’t fully complied with documents that had been requested of them. However, they weren’t from a source that I’d trust, so I’d ask if anyone can provide a more reliable situation report? "

    Still fishing, brutal when backbone hits belly.

     

  14. bigboab1916 18th July 2020 at 22:15

    Now come on.

    If someone heard "whispers" from someone they don't trust why would they not then spread the "story".

    Or just make stuff up then post it as if it was a fact.

    Are you suggesting they are just trying to get a reaction. 

  15. StevieBC 18th July 2020 at 21:31

    ‘..Is Big Mike putting TRFC in its place?’

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

    In the mad world of business contracts who can say, Stevie BC? 

    I think the problem is a manufacturing/supply line problem with whichever factories/producers,in India or wherever ,to which Castore (or J.Carter Sporting club Ltd) gave the manufacturing contracts.

    These may not have been able ( even if they were using quasi slave-labour, which of course I would not suggest for a minute that they were) to produce to specification the desired quantities, or to get them shipped to England by the (contracted?) time. 

    According  to Castore ( and Sir Andy Murray) their designs of sportswear are really quite good. But their quality is at the up-market, almost niche end. [Andy doesn’t buy a 50 or 60 quid tennis shirt!]

    To mass-produce high-end quality  for that kind of retail price is a horse of a different colour. If Castore got it wrong in their specification, or if the manufacturer did, then what? 

    And if Castore went downmarket into ‘cheap’ bog standard football gear, that might damage their ‘elite’ image.

    I don’t know, of course. 

    But there will be folks out there on this blog who will have that kind of clothing design/manufacturing/retail supply and distribution/consumer targeting knowledge. 

    Step forward, those who can enlighten us! 

    In making this post I am not just having a petty wee go at the Ibrox Board , but expressing a genuine interest  in how all of that world works, not ever having been in ‘business’ myself, but having been made increasingly aware of it by listening to the effects of Covid-19 on business generally.

     

  16. Homunculus 18th July 2020 at 22:47

    Now come on.

    If someone heard "whispers" from someone they don't trust why would they not then spread the "story".

    Or just make stuff up then post it as if it was a fact.

    Are you suggesting they are just trying to get a reaction. 

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

    Firstly, not trusting a source can mean different things. It may be because of previous experience of said source or simply the same, being unknown to you with no track record you know of.

    In this case it was unknown and given what social media can be like, my instinct was to be doubtful.

    I clearly expressed my doubt and asked if anyone had heard anything similar. Mainly thinking in easyjambo, who will be keeping a closer eye on what is currently going on than most, rather than being trapped within the Sevco Prism. Of all posters on here, he is the one who brings the most salient facts and objective observations to the table, by quite a distance.

    However, it was Brian McLaughin (BBC) who pretty much convinced me that there was nothing in the rumour/whispers when giving his weekly review of events on Saturday Sportsound. He is a journalist seldom mentioned on here, but IMO he has been fairly comprehensive and fair-minded in his reporting during this omnishambolic period. 

    Instead of the over-riding need on here to go after anything blue, posters might consider the unsatisfactory secret process that gives rise to a vacum of information, where speculation of various types will grow. Something that Andrew Smith touches upon in the actual blog post above.

    This blog often deals in doubtful speculation. It kind of goes with the territory but one kind of speculation is lovingly nutured whilst others tend to be stamped upon and dismissed.

    No-one is always right or has exclusivity on reason. The world, especially social media, might be a better place if we recognised that.

  17. JC

    Where is your authority for that statement, please?

    =========

    It was dom16 who posted a link regarding Peter directly joining the group in it’s efforts.

    The question here isn’t really about the semantics of whether he was officially a member or not (I’ll admit that I had that initial impression). His statement on Friday probably amounts to more than what most members have actually done, at least in applying pressure .

    IMO the main talking points are…

    • how the PLC interest seems to usurp or compete with the broader national interest
    • should a football club apply such direct pressure on the government during a health crisis ?

    º the apparent inconsequentiality of the CEO at the SFA 

    • the relationship between Peter and Ian
  18. I heard that the earth was flat and the moon was made of cheese. 

    However the person that told me was sure the Rangers never died or cheated anyone.

    He believes it was all Peters and the unseen Fenian hands fault.

    Do not listen to the people you are wasting your time.

  19. paraniodbyexperience 19th July 2020 at 10:40

    I heard that the earth was flat …

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

    I'm starting to think  there may be something in that, the people propounding the idea have a global presence.

    Anyway, people don't need to worry about unsubstantiated claims. When they turn out to be bunkum they can always either indulge in twisted logic, to say that their claim wasn't the main point anyway. So it's everyone else's fault for not understanding. Deflect onto other people having indulged in it themselves (nothing like a good logic fallacy). Or simply delete the initial offending claim.

    No wait, very few people can do that here, so it has to be one of the other two. 

     

  20. The ever-interesting and entertaining Barry Hearn expressed the need ,in these covid times , to approach the problems of holding sports events with hope and optimism and not in  defeatist way, otherwise you end up like Scottish Football!

    Nice one, Barry.

    (Sportsound, a few minutes ago)

     

  21. John Clark 19th July 2020 at 13:03

    The ever-interesting and entertaining Barry Hearn expressed the need ,in these covid times , to approach the problems of holding sports events with hope and optimism and not in  defeatist way, otherwise you end up like Scottish Football!

    Nice one, Barry.

    (Sportsound, a few minutes ago)

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

    Scottish football is controlled to a large extent by the policies of the Scottish Government, health is a devolved issue. The Scottish Government appears to be using more cautious policies than the Westminster Government as far as I can see. 

    Scottish football is trying to negotiate with the Scottish Government to allow to get things back to normal as soon as possible. However Scottish football can do nothing without the Governments agreement.

    Comments like Barry Hearn's are not helpful. Decrying someone for actions which are outwith their control is unfair. I am absolutely certain that the clubs want things back to normal asap, their survival depends on that. However the Scottish Government are quite rightly concentrating on saving lives and putting that above economic considerations. I'm not convinced the Westminster Government have the same balance of priorities. 

     

  22. Homunculus 19th July 2020 at 14:03

    ‘..Scottish football is trying to negotiate with the Scottish Government to allow to get things back to normal as soon as possible. However Scottish football can do nothing without the Governments agreement.’

    “””””””””””””””””””””””””””

    Of course they cannot.

    And of course ‘..Decrying someone for actions which are outwith their control is unfair.”

    My post was a reference back to Hearn’s speech in 2014 to the Scottish Football Association convention, when

    “Hearn said: “If you worked for me you’d be sacked. You have so much good in Scottish football, so many positive things, but you don’t sell yourself. You don’t do enough for yourselves. I’m seeing too much self pity.”

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/30317051

    I was not blaming the SFA for not getting ‘football’ back, because as you say, decisions on that front are not theirs to make. 

    But I do blame them for not reining in the SPFL  in its throwing to the wolves of those clubs that will be relegated/not promoted, instead of helping to find a  way to protect them, as they so easily managed to ‘protect’ by the ‘Big Lie’ the interests of those who founded a new club in 2012!

    And I blame them further for their phoney  hypocritical ‘Articles of Association’ legalism and blatant contempt for ‘due process’ exhibited by their bringing charges under their Articles 78 and 99 against  clubs innocent of any football cheating or grand scale tax cheating while those clubs are at Arbitration under the SFA’s own rules!

     Hearn would be right in his ‘humourous’ contempt for such a body as the SFA!

    SDM’s sports cheating killed the Rangers of my grandfather’s day, and made Scottish football so corrupt at its core as to be virtually incapable of redemption.

    Poncing about now with their Articles of Association , whether by the SFA or by  the SPFL  is not going to help.

    Both bodies are askew with truth and honesty and fair dealing, both of them mired in the murk of the 5-Way Agreement and the Res 12 issue.

    Let no one on those Boards sleep easily tonight or any other night in their miserable future lives.

    I go off to my kip, conscience free!broken heart

     

  23. Old Chinese proverb….
    Some view most events through the Sevco Prism, others go a step further and live in it.

    ===========%%%%%%%%%%============

    I was happy to see Peter get some well deserved media attention at the weekend. He so often lets his friends do things for him that you’d almost forget the large shadow he projects over the Scottish game.

    The good auld Sunday Post even came up with a suitable back page headline…

    “Not so fast, Peter”…..broken heart

    It highlighted the Scottish Clinical Director, Jason Leitch and what it called, the pouring of cold water over the PLC statement released on Friday. 

    https://i.ibb.co/XtKjTjT/Bacj-page-post.png

     

    IMO Peter and the PLC have usurped the collective position of Scottish football on this and naturally, will be putting the PLC interest in front of every other club in the land. I would get an argument that said, if successful, it would economically benefit all clubs, at least in the short-term. However, Celtic would be leading and position themselves first in the queue.

    This then switches focus on what the SFA are doing, or not doing.

    Here is where Peter’s friends come into play. Ian (CEO) and Mike (interim President) very much appear to give the main man the green light to take the lead.

    Peter gets what he wants from both the SFA and the SPFL.

     

    If Barry Hearn was to comment on how Peter and the PLC operated. My guess is that from his commercial way of seeing things, it’d be a thumbs up. I think Peter used to be an accountant, so for every credit there must be a debit entry….that’s where the thumbs down for Scottish football would come in.

    Neoliberal economics has wealth disproportionately flowing to the top. That wealth buys power that further influences decisions to increase wealth, increase gaps, etc., etc. and the rest can go to hell in a handcart. As far as Scottish fitbaw is concerned, the PLC continues to accumulate wealth and power….but when  the worst effects of hell and a handcart really arrive is when Peter (on behalf of PLC) hopes to make his ECA representation at UEFA count…..and leave the rest to make the best of what is left.  

    The elephant in the room for Scottish football is not so much the PLC agenda (Rangers would do similar, but can’t) . It’s what is actually happening in real time, how Peter and the PLC pulls so many strings and what that means for the rest of the game.

  24. Important day for the Scottish game with the Arbitration hearing to continue it’s process.

    However, it appears doubtful that the real stakeholders of the game (us) will be allowed to know much in the way of detail of the day’s play.

    Not good and it will leave a vacum that many will compete to fill. IMO, that competition already began last week with Mr/Ms Hampden Source prominent and arguably, the SFA compliance officer.

  25. Anyone expecting a lot of details from the arbitration process is likely to be disappointed. 

    It is a confidential process, other than the result I wouldn’t expect there to be much else available.

    That is just my understanding, if anyone knows different I am happy to be corrected. 

  26. Not the sort of thing I would normally bring here, however I think it is an important message at this time. At any time really.

    https://www.rangers.co.uk/Article/a-message-from-managing-director-stewart-robertson/2MGSMxIi2GWuSGXXsePlHA

    A MESSAGE FROM MANAGING DIRECTOR STEWART ROBERTSON

    Alfredo Morelos was the victim of racist abuse via social media on Friday evening. This hate crime is now subject of a police investigation.

    This is unacceptable, cannot be tolerated and must be condemned by everyone in Scottish football and society as a whole.

    Furthermore, as a club, we stand firmly behind our players who have taken a knee prior to recent games. This is a strong stance against racism.

    We will work tirelessly to protect our players every single day and will not tolerate the abuse or hatred that some have had to endure in recent days.

    To be clear, if you are unable to support our players, regardless of their background, you are not welcome at Ibrox. Rangers is a club for all.

    ‘Everyone Anyone’, our groundbreaking diversity and inclusion initiative, celebrates its first anniversary on Wednesday. Recent incidents highlight the importance of our campaign which we will continue to drive forward.

     

  27. Homunculus 20th July 2020 at 12:33

    Stewart Robertson…

    "…To be clear, if you are unable to support our players, regardless of their background, you are not welcome at Ibrox. Rangers is a club for all…"

    =======

    IMO, that deserves a: Wow Just Wow!

    And fair play to Robertson, as he is being direct and clear to his own supporters.

    Can't remember ever hearing / reading anything like that emanating from Ibrox before.

  28. As a Rangers fan, I back the statement from the club and would like to see those within our support that can’t back the players stance, walk away. 

    If some/many do, it would IMO, be a significant achievement on the back of the Everyone Anyone initiative. A step forward.

  29. The new SPFL Board

    New SPFL board announced: Steve Brown (St Johnstone) Les Gray (Hamilton), Peter Lawwell (Celtic), Ewen Cameron (Alloa), Ross McArthur, (Dunfermline), Ken Ferguson (Brechin), Gordon Thompson (Clyde), Murdoch MacLennan (chair), Neil Doncaster (CEO) & Karyn McCluskey (independent).

    Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose

  30. eJ,

    rearranging the deck chairs…?

    Would be much more encouraging if the announcement was to disband the SPFL instead.

    I know,  heart

  31. Homunculus 20th July 2020 at 12:33
    A MESSAGE FROM MANAGING DIRECTOR STEWART ROBERTSON
    ………………..
    Singing the Billy Boys was better than invading the Hampden pitch. May 27, 2016

    Start off the statement with a But, but. then later get to the point of the statement that should have been the main focus.

  32. Cluster One 20th July 2020 at 16:39

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

    To be fair he had to make it in some way palatable to the support.

    The way he has done will hopefully get as many as possible actually listening.

    It's better than he previous approach. Can you stop doing this because … it might harm the club.

  33. Homunculus 20th July 2020 at 17:58
    ……………
    Baby steps in the right direction, one can only hope.

  34. Surprisingly, that Ibrox statement was issued in the name of the MD, Stewart Robertson.

    Previously, Ibrox statements – especially any controversial statements – typically came from Chairman King himself.

    So, why did the new Chairman Park not get involved?

    Come to think about it: is Park involved with Ibrox operations at all these days…?

    It’s curious indeed that the Chairmanship has passed from one very vocal, influential individual of the Scottish game – to a relatively, quiet as a mouse, impotent individual, [e.g. ‘Dossiergate’]

    Has Chairman Park simply written off his Ibrox ‘investment’ – and now focusing his business prowess at his other, salvageable business interests?

    I think we should be told.  

  35. Regarding the statement from TRFC on racism and abuse of players , what did they expect if this is true ? (from Follow Follow)

    The need for this surely signposts that Stewart should concentrate on what he’s good at, and that isn’t club leadership. Last year when Everyone, Anyone launched we had a piper playing ‘The Billy Boys’ during the media call ffs!

    And on the singing of the Billy Boys during games in France 

    We had halfwits who went to France and thought it was okay to sing the Billy Boys. Despite knowing it’s off limits.

    Who needs enemies ?

     

  36. Extracted from The DR today;

    "Aberdeen's season opener against Rangers has been brought forward five hours at the request of Sky.

    Steven Gerrard 's side will travel to Pittodrie on August 1 for a mouth-watering Premiership opener against the Dons.

    But the fixture, originally pencilled in for a 5.30pm kick-off, has been rescheduled for 12.30pm.

    The SPFL have revealed that Sky requested the match be given an earlier start time…"

    ==========

    The clubs are desperate for supporters' cash, but still treat them with contempt.

    Nothing changes.

  37. reasonablechap19th July 2020 at 07:28

    JC

    Where is your authority for that statement, please?

    =========

    It was dom16 who posted a link regarding Peter directly joining the group in it’s efforts.

    The question here isn’t really about the semantics of whether he was officially a member or not (I’ll admit that I had that initial impression). His statement on Friday probably amounts to more than what most members have actually done, at least in applying pressure .

    IMO the main talking points are…

    • how the PLC interest seems to usurp or compete with the broader national interest
    • should a football club apply such direct pressure on the government during a health crisis ?

    º the apparent inconsequentiality of the CEO at the SFA 

    • the relationship between Peter and Ian

    ========================
    this is getting rather tedious. “Reasonable Chap” seems to be anything but. 

    Would you apply the same vitriol to the SRU? They have been lobbying the Scottish Government for months on letting spectators back into Murrayfield. And in the middle of a pandemic as well!

     

     

  38. dom 16

    I’m of the RC persuasion myself – but different from the one to whom you are referring.

    I’ve already advised folks about his condition – Argumentative Personality Disorder (APD). This does seem to be seriously escalating, to the extent that the next stage of treatment should be applied …

    Nil by feeding/commenting on the content of his posts.

    As an aside though – I think he actually fancies Peter!

     

  39. 'StevieBC 21st July 2020 at 13:27

    Extracted from The DR today;

    "Aberdeen's season opener against Rangers has been brought forward five hours at the request of Sky.

    But the fixture, originally pencilled in for a 5.30pm kick-off, has been rescheduled for 12.30pm.

    The SPFL have revealed that Sky requested the match be given an earlier start time…"

    ==========

    The clubs are desperate for supporters' cash, but still treat them with contempt.

    Nothing changes.'

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

    The fixture will be played behind closed doors. What's the issue with the kick off time?

  40. dom16

    Would you apply the same vitriol to the SRU? They have been lobbying the Scottish Government for months on letting spectators back into Murrayfield. And in the middle of a pandemic as well!

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

    There is nothing vitriolic about my posts. I’d suggest repeated, persistent or consistent would be a more accurate way to describe my line on Peter and his friends. It is an issue that is directly connected to the blogs stated aims.

    However, many on the blog simply don’t want to be distracted from their focus on all things blue, no matter how far away from the blogs stated aims, it may get. 

    Going back to the substance…I understand Peter wanting to do the best for the PLC he represents and the dependable #FollowtheMoney method shows why he would be so keen to hurry the return of fans to Celtic Park. However, these are not normal times and I draw your attention to the talking points below.

     

    – how the PLC interest seems to usurp or compete with the broader national interest

    – should a football club apply such direct pressure on the government during a health crisis ?

    – the apparent inconsequentiality of the ceo at the sfa 

    – the relationship between Peter and Ian

     

    What I am pointing to, is that Peter and the PLC are too powerful within the Scottish game and effectively hold the strings of both the SFA and the SPFL. This means that when matters of import come around (#FollowtheMoney), the PLC will generally be first in the queue to benefit.

    This has come about because of two main reasons

    • the PLC have become THE dominant club, on and off field 
    • Peter has been in the job 17 years and very much has his ducks in place

     

    The wealthy get more wealthy, buy degrees of lobbying power/influence, get more wealthy, become more powerful. The rest can go hang, their interests come after that of the wealthy.

    #FollowtheMoney is as reliable a guide for keeping track of Peter and the PLC as any. The res12er’s should know that by now.

    I recall a number of Celtic fans who were unhappy at their own PLC board when links to the Tories became apparent. IMO, the PLC is now illustrative of the posionous economic system that has evolved in the UK and beyond over the previous 4 decades.

    Winning football matches is one thing but are Celtic fans comfortable with the way Peter and the PLC are operating ?

    Are other clubs happy with letting one club almost always get their way and nibbling on the relative scraps that are left. It seems as if many of those in charge of other clubs accept it, grudgingly or not.

     

  41. According to the SPFL’s favoured conduit (at least it has been during this affair),….  Recordsport understands…that focus will soon return to the Arbitration hearing (my summing up).

    https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/hearts-partick-thistle-face-relegation-22393972

    By many accounts we’ll get a verdict but without any detail on how and why it was reached.

    That would produce a vacum to fill and one side of this argument (SPFL), have been a lot busier in trying to control media narratives. Since Easter, it was the only way they could react to a crisis of their own shambolic making. No leadership, only spin.

    Anyone heard definitive news on how the SPFL Executive got on with their request to clubs for more power to deal with any potential Covid-19 related problems during season 20/21 ?
     

  42. reasonablechap 22nd July 2020 at 07:21

    '…Are other clubs happy with letting one club almost always get their way and nibbling on the relative scraps that are left. '

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

    They were very happy indeed not to expel a club that cheated them all for a decade or so, and are very happy to accommodate a lying club which markets itself as being 140+ years old and falsely claims to be entitled to the honours of that defunct club while accepting no liability for the debts owed to taxpayers and other creditors.

    They can have no criticism of a club which has not cheated them .

     

     

     

  43. JC

    The blog has often used the word whataboutery. Your post at 08:41 this morning is a good example of it.

    Try to get out of that Rangers Prism once in a while and contemplate what is going on today.

    The best all round poster on here (IMO), Easyjambo, got fed up with so much on the blog being viewed through such a prism. In short, whilst you are obviously free to do so, it isn’t a credible way forward when dealing with today.

  44. reasonablechap 22nd July 2020 at 11:07

    ".. it isn’t a credible way forward when dealing with today."

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

    When dealing with lies and deception it is always credible , yesterday, today and tomorrow to call out the truth.

    Scottish Football was dirtied and soiled by SDM's RFC; and the stain will remain for as long as the lie that TRFC are that Rangers continues to propagated by our soiled and dirty governance body.

     

  45. Absolutely, JC!

    Although it’s only, (only), football we are talking about here,

    there seems to be some parallels with recent events across the world.

    It seems we should only talk about the ‘positives’, (the money the Ibrox club generates, “most successful club”, since 1872, etc.)…

    BUT, we have to erase from history the negatives, (the player registration cheating, the HMRC cheating, the death of Rangers, etc.).

    Mibbees there needs to be a plaque fitted next to the Ibrox entrance, (Edit: and at Hampden).

    “Those who don’t know their history are doomed to repeat it.”

     

  46. I'm telt that taking the knee is viewed as genuflecting by some , and they find it offensive in some way . Sects , eh ?

  47. reasonablechap 22nd July 2020 at 07:21
    Are other clubs happy with letting one club almost always get their way and nibbling on the relative scraps that are left. It seems as if many of those in charge of other clubs accept it, grudgingly or not.
    ………………
    Other clubs as you often say(FollowtheMoney)For years that money seemed to generate down from ibrox way.And other clubs were very happy with this. We are often told how the (Glory years) was the best time for scottish football and the money it generated in the game. Some even claim the (Journey) also generated great wealth for the lower divisions, each lower league club each nibbling away on the relative scraps that were handed to them. Now to coin a phrase from LOTR. the all seeing eye points to the East end. They now accept that the money is with Celtic and the money celtic can generate for them. Clubs will always follow the money and for the time being that money emanates from celtics direction.
    If only king did have that wealth to match the bluster, some clubs would have flip flopped very happily by letting whatever club get their way, but for now they will follow the money.

  48. Other clubs as you often say(FollowtheMoney)For years that money seemed to generate down from ibrox way.And other clubs were very happy with this. We are often told how the (Glory years) was the best time for scottish football and the money it generated in the game. Some even claim the (Journey) also generated great wealth for the lower divisions, each lower league club each nibbling away on the relative scraps that were handed to them. Now to coin a phrase from LOTR. the all seeing eye points to the East end. They now accept that the money is with Celtic and the money celtic can generate for them. Clubs will always follow the money and for the time being that money emanates from celtics direction.
    If only king did have that wealth to match the bluster, some clubs would have flip flopped very happily by letting whatever club get their way, but for now they will follow the money.

     

    ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

    Great post Cluster One laugh

    reasonablechap like you I value easyJambo's posts but its the only thing I agree with you about.

  49. Thanks for putting words in my mouth Reasonable Chap. I couldn’t possibly have come up with the selection of words that you supply. That they also make you look much better than vitriol is obvious, in your opinion, coincidental. 

    to use your own phraseology, perhaps time to move beyond the green prism that you are viewing the world from. 

    Im out in responding to your ravings from now on.
     

  50. dom16 22nd July 2020 at 21:25

    ‘..Im out in responding to your ravings from now on.’

    “””””””””””””””””””””””””””

    No, dom16!

    Keep in mind that  there’s a difference between ‘feeding a troll’ and making every effort to counter the insistent attempts made by perhaps RIFC’s  professional PR people and certainly by its fellow-travellers ( or maybe just one  ‘multi-personality’ individual!) to prevent the light of truth shining on the deceitful ‘sports’ club that claims to be RFC of 1872, and to get us all to ‘move on’.

    Any post that has at its heart support for the Big Lie, and tries to get us all to just dismiss it and let the liars get away with the lie has to be resisted!

    Remember , there is no ‘prism’ distorting the  simple truth.

    It is an objective fact that RFC is in Liquidation.

    It is an objective fact that TRFC did not exist before 2012. 

    And no ‘reasonable chap’ can honestly hope to deny those facts. 

    ( And I’m smiling now at the a.se that one of ‘Her Majesty’s Counsel, learned in the Law’ made of himself when wittering on about ethereal essences, the transmigration of ectoplasm ….No, those weren’t his words, but that’s what he was trying to convey: a dead football club was not dead but ‘lived on ‘ in the minds and hearts .

    I remember ,very clearly, listening to him as I sat on the hard uncomfortable bare wooden bench in one of the old court-rooms in Parliament House, and thinking of my dear old mammy, many years dead, but still ‘alive’  in my heart! And the fact that I did hand in her pension book, because she was, in fact, dead and no longer entitled to war widow’s pension! The old DHSS (which administered War Pensions) would not have carried on paying on the basis that ma mammy was alive in my heart!)

    And any chap who, failing to have truth on his side, resorts to trying to shut down reference to the Big Lie by getting us to ‘move on’ has to be pulled up from time to time, so that fresh readers or intermittent readers of the sfm.scot blog are not by our silence misled into thinking  that the Big Lie at the very heart of  Scottish football has somehow gone away, and that , magically, RFC of 1872 is still alive!)

    RIFC plc/TRFC spokespersons must not ever have the last word!

    For, as representing a club that is a living lie, their word is worthless!

    And , by the Lord Harry, don’t they know it!

    Gnashing of teeth isn’t in it!broken heart

     

  51. Cluster One 22nd July 2020 at 19:59

    ' Clubs will always follow the money and for the time being that money emanates from celtics direction.'

    """

    Indeed, Cluster One, that would seem to be the case at the moment. 

    Of course, Celtic's money is honest money, honestly earned with complete football integrity , nae cheatin' of their fellow clubs for ten years.

    The 'following of the money' in the case of SDM's cheatingly obtained 'money' was reprehensible. For 40 clubs to sign up to a lie for filthy lucre's sake! What a dirty wee episode in sports history!

  52. John Clark 23rd July 2020 at 00:28

    When did "40 clubs" sign up to the lie.

    Rangers, the new club, applied to join the SPL (as was) and were rejected, one club abstained.

    They then applied to join the SFL (as was) and were accepted, on a majority vote, into the lowest division of that league.

    How is that signing up to the lie that it was the same club. A new club applied and were let in by one of the senior leagues. 

    Or are you referring to something else. 

  53. Homunculus 23rd July 2020 at 11:08
    Rangers, the new club, applied to join the SPL (as was) and were rejected, one club abstained.

    They then applied to join the SFL (as was) and were accepted, on a majority vote, into the lowest division of that league.

    How is that signing up to the lie that it was the same club. A new club applied and were let in by one of the senior leagues.

    Or are you referring to something else.
    ………………..
    All very true. And every club, fan, SMSM, sfa, spl, sfl member, person knew it to be true. But telling that truth. And sticking to that truth does not bring the money in. And sticking to that truth brings it’s own problems. Much easier for all involved to stick to the one narrative, even thought it goes against what they knew that, a new club applied and were let in by one of the senior leagues..
    Why none have a backbone to now say and state the truth, i don’t know how they sleep at night.
    Back at the start if you don’t stick to the narrative as told.
    https://twitter.com/ClusterOne2/status/1286258218604417024/photo/1

  54. Actually, there is another argument not “to move on” – but instead keep shouting out about the continuation lie until we’re blue 🙂 in the face.

    All the indications are that RIFC/TRFC has not improved on its ‘Going Concern’ position since their last Annual Accounts. 

    We all witnessed how Ibrox was accommodated in 2012: rather than justifiably being expelled from the game, they were shoehorned, eventually, into the SFL.

    IF TRFC goes bust in the near future, any new club must be treated just like any other club.

    No secret agreements, no preferential treatment.

    However, as we still have Petrie and Doncaster involved, why should we expect a more honest outcome…?

     

  55. Homunculus 23rd July 2020 at 11:08

    ".When did "40 clubs" sign up to the lie"

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

    They "signed" up ,via their respective league representatives, when they accepted (and continue to accept )an arrangement that allowed CG's new club to claim to be RFC. (  RR under Turnbull Hutton tried to distance itself from acceptance of that arrangement, hence I say 40 clubs rather than 41)

    This was/is such a mockery of sporting truth and  governance integrity as to make them all little better than the likes of CG in the 'moral values' stakes, without even such  excuse/reason  as a pandemic would have provided, since the liquidation of RFC the consequence of the greedy cheating by SDM.

     

  56. John Clark 23rd July 2020 at 13:25

    Homunculus 23rd July 2020 at 11:08

    ".When did "40 clubs" sign up to the lie"

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

    They "signed" up ,via their respective league representatives, when they accepted (and continue to accept )an arrangement that allowed CG's new club to claim to be RFC.

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

    Sorry, I'm not being obtuse but I really don't know what you mean by this.

    They can claim to be whatever they want. How have 40 other clubs accepted that it is true.

    If it was the same club they would have "stayed" in the SPL (as was). They didn't they applied and were rejected.

    If they had been relegated they would not have had to apply to be in the SFL (as was) they would have simply been in it. The same as any other relegated club.

    The other clubs signed up to them being a new club by that process, not being the same one.  

  57. Homunculus
    23rd July 2020 at 13:57

    ……………

    Collectively, the SPFL has accepted the current iteration of Rangers as the same 'Club'. It states quite clearly on the SPFL website that the 'Club' calling itself Rangers was founded in 1872. 

    All nonsense of course, but no SPFL 'Club', has as far as I know, objected to this assignment since 2012.

    I'm not sure that even Turnbull Hutton was as clear on this point than folklore would have us believe.

    As far as I know, no club has objected to the repeated statements from the SPFL executive (in particular Neil Doncaster) setting out the contorted rationale by which it considers the current 'Club' to have been purchased by Charles Green and his ragtag band.

    The clubs may not believe it to be true or vocalising their support for the SPFL position, however, they have collectively acquiesced to the false narrative.

    To aquiesce may be to accept the lie reluctantly. However there is little doubt in my mind that the clubs have indeed accepted that lie.

  58. Homunculus 23rd July 2020 at 13:57

    '..They can claim to be whatever they want. How have 40 other clubs accepted that it is true.'

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

    They have not forced the SFA to publicly declare that TRFC is not RFC of 1872 and therefore is not entitled to claim a history   of sporting success before the year 2012, or to advertise itself for any purpose, sporting or marketing,  as being RFC of 1872.  

    By allowing such deceitful behaviour, the clubs are endorsing a lie propagated by the very governance body of the sport. 

  59. John Clark 23rd July 2020 at 16:30

    Fair enough, that's your opinion.

    I do not agree that not "forcing" the SFA to make such a declaration constitutes signing up to Rangers being the same club as the one in liquidation.

    That's just my opinion though.

  60. John Clark22nd July 2020 at 23:58

    dom16 22nd July 2020 at 21:25

    ‘..Im out in responding to your ravings from now on.’

    “””””””””””””””””””””””””””

    No, dom16!

    To clarify John. I’m out from responding the Mr RCs comments. I’m not out from the blog. 

    My experience of this blog is that from time to time various contributors visit us to provide some “re education” service. It invariably fails as their true purpose emerges. I fully expect RC to follow the path of Steerpike and his ilk. 

  61. dom16 23rd July 2020 at 17:53

    '..To clarify John. I’m out from responding the Mr RCs comments. I’m not out from the blog.'

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

    Roger, dom16.

Comments are closed.